The organised chaos

Five reasons

why I am still with the boyfriend:

  • He is damn good driver
    That might sound utterly shallow but hell, it’s quite fun being his passenger. He likes to pretend that the tiny Hyundai Getz he is driving is some turbo-charged Ferrari but (un)fortunately, it’s just a 1.3l car. I used to think he was darn sexy while driving his manual Honda Civic (SIR somemore, don’t play play) but that’s a thing of the past. Too bad.
  • He makes me laugh
    Every month, I morph into a flesh-eating bitch from hell due to the fact that hormones are wrecking havoc in my brains. I sob for no rhyme and rhythm, bite people’s heads off and ingest large amounts of chocolate. He has this ability to then piss me off (with no real effort) and subsequently coaxing giggles out of me. I just tell him that I am currently in the midst of the three singularly most powerful alphabets – PMS – and he understands immediately. A mark of a well-educated man.
  • He goes shopping with me
    Unlike other useless men who just hang around obstructing traffic, he’s actually helpful and tries to pick out stuff for me. And I must add, his taste is not too bad, I have actually purchased clothes that he suggested I try before. In addition, he does not mind carrying my bags for me and is not in the least grumpy at being in Mango for the 10000th time in one week. And in return, I spare him the horrors of ploughing through the sale racks of Mango with me.
  • He does not act his age
    That is both good and bad. It’s good since we have a relatively large age gap between us and he doesn’t mind indulging in extremely childish activities with me. It’s bad because it means that he has this affinity with computer games. He acts like my seven-year-old nephew when he is playing on the Xbox. He (the boyfriend, not the child) likes to sprawl all over the floor, with that weird-looking contraption that calls itself a headset on his, err, head. He enjoys pretending that he is invincible and likes splattering people to death. He then proceeds to get really mad, childishly, I might add, when actual little boys annoy the socks off him or when he loses. Tsk.
  • He’s my punching bag
    No further explanation needed

So to the 30-year-old who thinks he is still 20 with a whole head of hair, happy 5th anniversary.

What’s Playing on iTunes
100 Years from the album “The Battle for Everything” by Five For Fighting


What the boss said

All true, spoken during a dreadfully long meeting of one and a half hours, discussing strategic 2005 plans for one of our clients.

Our client XX could launch a new “Care for Babies” programme for Indonesian maids. Back in their hometown, they have 20 babies and don’t have the time to take care of them. So they leave them in the field and ignore them when they cry. Even if they die, nevermind, tomorrow the parents can still pop out another baby. But it’s different in Singapore. The maids don’t realise that there are only two or three babies in each family and so our babies are precious. That’s why you have cases of the maids tossing the babies out of the windows.

and then,

Many maids are very young, they don’t know how to take care of babies. That’s why they get stressed out and start throwing the babies out of the windows, or burn their employers to death.

followed by

Sri Lankans are an important group of consumers, which the advertising agency had failed to identify. I want you to talk to the construction workers, to find out where they like to go, what they like to do and which media they use.

which led to

Record the Vasantham Central show, watch it and tell me what it is about.


See if we can get (a remittance company) to let Singaporeans donate money to the Singapore Red Cross for free.

Back when I first applied for the job, they didn’t tell me that I had to be a cunning linguist.

Everything Else

Prayers from a small island nation

Without sounding callous, I just wish to say that I am extremely thankful to be living in Singapore.

Aceh is not terribly far away from us, and yet the disaster took nary a life here. However, 23,000 60,000 114,000 others were not so fortunate. When the tsunamis struck them unexpectedly, they were swept away into the vast ocean of water, possibly never to be found again. From Indonesia to India to even Somalia, the tremors were felt and the worst is yet to come. With a magnitude of 9.0 on the Richter Scale, the greatest since 1900, nobody really knows how to handle a disaster of such scale simply because it has never happened before in our lifetimes.

And since we live on this small island nation, we will probably never encounter natural disasters such as this in our lifetimes. And as we pray for the victims of the tsunamis, we should also mutter a silent word of gratitude that we never will. Let us be thankful that we live in an island that is protected all round by land masses, that we are geographically sound. Let us never take our survival for granted, and as a result, grow increasingly self-centeredness.

I am a self-declared shopaholic. The post-Christmas sales get my heart pounding, which explains why I was trawling the malls after work just now. I confess now that a yummy-looking pair of shoes that I had seen is still calling out my name, hours after I left the boutique. But do I really need another pair of shoes? What would be the use of 50 pairs of shoes, when the money could probably go into feeding a starving child whose home has been destroyed by the ravaging waters?

I’ve never dealt well with large-scale disasters. September 11 had turned me into a morbid, gloomy zombie for days after. And now, as I read the news reports, my heart clenched tightly and tears threatened to spill. But instead of just whinging about it, this time, I want to make a difference. And I can, by donating money to the Singapore Red Cross. They are raising money to fund purchases of emergency items such as medicines and food parcels to aid the victims. Every bit counts.

Let us do our part in ensuring that relief comes to those aggrieved in the speediest manner.

The organised chaos

Merry Christmas!

To everyone out there, have the merriest Christmas!
Here’s wishing ye all a Christmas that’s filled with love, hope and joy.
If you are free, do drop by either Hyatt Hotel or Sheraton Hotel to catch some sweet, harmonious caroling!
More information here.

Eeeps! It’s Santa! From Scared of Santa

What’s Playing on iTunes
All I Want for Christmas Is You – Olivia Olson from the album “Love Actually” by Love Actually

Continue reading “Merry Christmas!”

Geek Girl, The organised chaos

Have a very Sony Ericsson Christmas!

My new phone!
Originally uploaded by yannie.

Christmas arrived almost one week early yesterday, in the form of a new phone – my Sony Ericsson K700i.

The boyfriend was going to get himself a SE S700i since he had a $200 voucher from our local green mobile service provider. Conveniently, my contract had ended and my phone was dying on me at the same time. So I decided to piggyback on his purchase and get myself a new phone too.

The best thing is, I didn’t have to pay a single cent for it! Using half the money he got from selling the iPod mini that he had won, he bought me this phone as a four-in-one gift: Christmas + anniversary (end December) + birthday (in January) + Valentine’s Day. Such a value-for-money bargain!

Went down to Funan to buy meself a bluetooth dongle and man, I’m having a ball of a time transferring MP3 ringtones and answering sms on my iMac. I can even control my iMac using my phone, although it is an utterly frivolous and useless application.

Anyway, Christmas came early for the boyfriend too, since I bought him this at Sitex. It’s probably gathering dust though, since he seems to favour this most of the time. Tsk tsk

The organised chaos

Peace and quiet

I’m alone in the office now.
My colleagues are either on leave, on MC, away for lunch or running errands. Hence my solitude.

But I don’t mind it, honestly.
It feels good to be alone sometimes. Well, not really alone. There are a couple of guys who are doing renovation in here as well. But they go their own way, doing their work and don’t really bother me.

It’s cold, the skies have opened up outside. The chill is refreshing and comfortable, and I can almost make believe that I am back in Germany again.
I remember running from the competition centre to the town centre clad only in my sari and in slippers. The cool breeze that had rushed against my face was crisp, but not biting. Was that only in July? It feels like ages ago.

VC will be carolling at the Esplanade later this evening. Christmas never really feels like Christmas until we go for carolling.

Last Christmas, I wanted to hide from the world, under the love of my family.
But I think that this Christmas will be a fabulous one this year.


That’s why they call it work

I’m positively uninspired.
After reading through The Lost Girl‘s lament about how nobody seems to be blogging recently, I felt guilty.

It’s just that somehow, now that I have started working, I find that my creative juices have been squeezed dry. I sleep between six to seven hours every night and yet I end up bleary-eyed and late for work. I have no time to read the papers, let alone the Dan Brown paperback on loan to me. My wardrobe is a mess, it’s practically exploding on me. My bills are all dumped unceremoniously on my table. I just want to flop onto my bed and sleep by the time I get home.

I know that compared to the Evil Fat Brat, my work is considered easy peasy. And that there are many people out there who are unemployed so I should just shut up and shove my words up my arse. But honestly, work is just work.

Just work, someone told me before, just work and earn the money. Is that the mentality that we should all have then? That we are all be working for the sake of earning money and nothing else? Am I too idealistic in thinking that a career is something that we should all take pride in? Should my job be just work? (via Cowboy Caleb)

The double meaning gets at the two faces of work. One is the side of necessity. Work is something compulsory, not merely an option or a lifestyle choice. The other side is more hopeful. It invites us to find work that is fulfilling, that is part of a good life.

Of course work is a necessity. I have to pay off my tuition loan. I have a retired mother to support. I have bills to pay. I have dreams of flying back to Germany to sing again.

But does it mean that I have to compromise myself in order to survive? For the past month, I’ve grown from being distraught to feeling indifferent. Client unhappy? Too bad. Co-worker irresponsible? Whatever.

And it’s sad, because you know that it doesn’t have to be that way. I know for sure that I can’t stay in this job for long, not even when my boss tells me that I’ve been doing a good job and she will be letting me handle accounts on my own from next year on. I feel like a traitor for going for interviews but at the same time, I know that this is me fighting for my future. I’m chasing a dream because I want to find a place where I can belong, where the puzzle will finally fit. Wishful thinking? Maybe. But at least I know I am trying my darnest.

My mother tells me that I should change my ideals to suit the work place. Maybe. The problem obviously lies with me and not the nature of the job. I just cannot reconcile the dissonance within me at calling this my career. Was it a mistake then? Perhaps. But then again, I wouldn’t have known that if I hadn’t tried.

There are lots of activities we might have an aptitude for, but cannot manage to identify with or enjoy. You might be very good at accounting.Yet you might not be able to think of yourself as an accountant, to take any enjoyment from the activity, to connect it in any deep way to who you are. Fitting work in the deepest sense means having an ability to realize and to enjoy the distinctive goods that your work offers. This kind of fit is what matters most on a personal level.

What’s Playing on iTunes
How To Be Dead from the album “Final Straw” by Snow Patrol

PS Comment moderation has been enabled, in light of the fact that my blog was bombarded by almost 2,000 spam comments over the weekend.


When I was 18

When I was 18…
Originally uploaded by yannie.

Inspired by Hucks, I have decided to embrace my previous 18-year-old self and put it out for the whole world to see.

To my left is my brudder’s most (in)famous “ex-girlfriend” (or so she claims to the whole of Arts in NUS). As my brudder will tell you, and everybody who is kaypoh enough to listen, the relationship was just a figment of her imagination, thank you very much. In fact, her antics are his favourite topics to rehash, as most of VC can tell you.

To my right is a budding lawyer, who was recently featured in the December issue of Shape magazine for losing tonnes of weight. She looks really different now. Let’s just say that with her personality, she would make one kickass litigation lawyer.

So what was I doing with them?

This photo was taken on Valentine’s Day in 1999, or what was known more diplomatically as Friendship Day in JC. We were selling those balloons and some assorted knick-knacks to raise funds for the choir. The would-be lawyer and I didn’t sleep a wink the night before in order to prepare for the booth.

This photo was taken by one of my all-time favourite teachers. He used to be a prolific writer but is now busy with teaching, selling Nu-Skin products and conquering the world with his Subaru WRX (previously an assortment of motorbikes).

How I miss those times.