February 15, 2009

the prodigal child returns

Posted in Random Ramblings, The Thesis, Travel and Adventure at 6:20 pm by meldee

Good lord, it’s been months since I last updated. I apologise (though I’m really not sure why) for my unaccounted for absence–I’m sort of borderline ‘OhMyGod you poor fellers who still come by this blog (all two of you)’ and ‘Hufff it’s my prerogative to update/not so live with it’.

I even forgot my blog username/password, if that’s any indication of my dedication to this. In summary, I suppose what I’m trying to say is that I (will) blog when the spirit moves me, but also I’d like to get back in touch with writing (insightfully and wittily)–for my own good.

Updates, updates. As much has been happening in the last few months since that frazzled, angsty post.

In no particular order:

  1. The Thesis was submitted on time. In fact, about 10 days early. A lecturer remarked rather incredulously to me that this is possibly the first time she has seen anyone hand in their work before the deadline. Which made me smug, because I pride myself on doing things faster than your average procrastinator.
  2. The Bali conference went spiffingly! I met some really lovely people and gaped in awe during speeches of some incredibly inspiring women (and some men). I felt a sense of belonging there, though some of the ‘older’ feminists did pretty much frighten the beejezus out of me.
  3. My Australian break was fabulous. I cooked, baked, ate, lazed, read, watched a shitload of TV and went to the beach. I went camping, drove a boat (for all of two minutes), became a Mummy Koala (according to T’s second niece) and had many, many drinks of the alcoholic variety (my poor liver was out of training for so long). And oh–I got engaged! 😀
  4. So yes, though we are now engaged we have not set any date. The not being in the same country is a huge hurdle, as is the fact that many companies in Australia were not hiring and had freezed headcounts (especially for foreigners, sigh). The lack of money and work experience on my part is also a problem, albeit one that is being worked on. We have no idea when we’ll see each other again for sure (save the Skype webcamming) but I’m hoping he’ll make it up here for my graduation in September.
  5. I did not forget to apply for graduation this year. Yay, me.
  6. The Thesis (unofficial) results came back a few days ago, and it really hit me when I rang T to tell him. I got an 86 from one examiner and a 90 from another, which should give me First Class Honours as prior to getting these results I had an average of 81.5 for both the taught units. Needless to say, I was over the bloody moon and exuberantly declared that I would happily do it (the whole Honours year) all over again. Actually, on second thought–maybe not.
  7. I am currently being interviewed for a number of jobs, and chastising myself for not being ‘all’ that these companies want. I am now torn between the idea of working for a huge MNC (but I dread the idea of being a desk jockey doing things I absolutely despise) and the idea of working for a publication, which has been my lifelong dream but does not have the same sort of prestige/payroll as this particular MNC would (also, that area of writing is not exactly my forte–have been shitting myself all weekend reading everything I can get my grubby paws on and making little diagrams). But I feel I know what I want, and becoming a corporate bunny most definitely is not it. I am dizzied from the options and pros and cons.

Going for interviews also exposed me to something quite nasty which I have (usually) been quite oblivious to. The fact that when people see a relatively nice-looking young woman (who oh, happens to wear makeup and dresses and have kitsch accessories and shoes) they look at you funny. And by people, I mean middle-aged women in positions of power. I know it’s extremely catty and stereotypical, and as a quasi-feminist I should know better, but I’m just saying that it happens, and I’m certain not all middle-aged women are so inclined–I’m just speaking from experience.

Hell, I might even end up being one of them in a few years. I’m not exactly getting any younger, and I do admit to tut-tutting over the way some of my ex students were dressed/conducted themselves. I guess we all do that–judge. It’s nasty but that’s the way it is.

Anyhoo, I don’t know why but it really gets to me. And I know it shouldn’t, because I am in control of the thoughts I give energy to, but I would really love to be judged by merit and not anything else. But that’s my idealist speaking–having worked in media-esque fields I know in this industry (and in ANY industry, for that matter) it’s all about who you know and not necessarily what you know.

I just find it a bit sad, that’s all.

I should dash now–there’s a barbecue going on at a dear friend’s place as a send-off for her to go to Australia to pursue further study, and I’m sicketty sick sick–a detour to the doctor’s is needed before I rock up at her door and possibly render everyone else there sniffly and coughy.

On the note of infectious diseases–whoever drank my Black Label and Coke last night, if you catch my cold serves you bloody right. Effing freeloaders.

Right, I promise to try harder for my next entry and actually have a structure/form of some sort.

If I remember that I have a blog. Heh.


October 16, 2008

on see-sawing

Posted in Happenings, Random Ramblings, The Thesis, Travel and Adventure, Uni at 4:14 pm by meldee

It’s been a mad few days; and ones that I will possibly look back on in a few weeks and smile wryly at. Until then, I’m floundering in a pit of frazzled-ness.

Take this morning for instance.

Was supposed to send my grandmother to the bus stop for her to catch her express bus to Melaka. I thought she said 8pm, so I was rushing to get her there by 7.30. When we got there, poor thing gives me a doleful look and says, ‘It’s only an hour I have to wait’.

Her bus was due at 8.30am.

After driving off, I felt so bad I wanted to turn around and wait with her, but it took me 20 minutes to wait at the traffic light to make the U-turn so I decided not to. It took me about 50 minutes to crawl the measly 5km to uni after that.

Got to uni, and BLOODY security guard at the staff carpark stops me and demands to see my card. There’s only one guard who does this to me, always the same feller. I pressed my card up to my window (it displays the card validity period and faculty) and he shooed me away.

There was a car behind me and I was still wracked with guilt from depositing my poor gran off so early (plus my window rosak. Proton car, what’s new) so I just reversed and drove all the way in to the construction area to park.

By the way, this guard only picks on me. I swear to God. In the time that it took me to walk from my car to the end of the path, he’d let in four other cars (two with P stickers!) without so much as a ‘STOP! SHOW ME YOUR ID!’.

I was eyeballing him furiously from behind my bug-eye sunnies and he was actually eyeballing me back! At the end of the pathway I pulled out my ID and waved it very violently at him to say ‘I HAVE MY BLOODY ID YOU STUPID COW!’

Then I got stopped at the main gates. By the nice lady security guard who sees me everyday.

Who also asked me for my ID. (Bloody hell).

Turns out she was walkie-talkieing with the feller who denied me entry and she eyeballed my card.

‘But your card expires in two weeks,’ she said, confused. ‘I know!’ I wailed. ‘This is the last week of my class and I always park there but he didn’t let me in! He always picks on me!’

Grimacing sympathetically, she walkie-talkies back to the guard. ‘Her staff ID expires on October 31st 2008. Today is not the 31st, it is the 16th.’

Apparently the fat bastard thought this month was what, NOVEMBER?! Bloody eejut. He then apologised and asked me to go back so I could repark my car. Huff. Fat chance.


Rest of the day was spent tutoring (for four hours, oh la la), giving a talk (I am totally creeped out that my name has been splashed on all the uni computer desktops)…in which I got to talk to a cute guy (ho hum!), and now, waiting for my effing virus scan to be completed because the effing uni laptop gave me a nasty something-or-other.

On the agenda is another talk to attend in the evening, working on my slides for my presentation tomorrow, and then starting to read feedback from one of my supervisors on one of my chapters.

And, oh, work on my conference paper.

Yuppo, will be going to (get this) BALI to present my very first (international, eek!) conference paper! All expenses paid, which I am quite smug about. I said I’d blog about it only when I got it, so it looks like my visualisation has actually been pretty effective.

It’s basically a young women’s leadership forum and dealing with the future of feminisms in Asia, so I will be one of possibly hundreds of presenters. I am both terrified and thrilled, and I know it’s a wonderful opportunity, but still.

Wah. With the current workload. Plus there’s a wedding this weekend! Gah.

I’m quite literally see-sawing up and down and mood-swinging like a maniac, because there have been so many things coming up this month. I am so relieved that tomorrow is officially the last day of the semester, and that all this madness should settle by next week.

Big sigh. Apologies for being a Rambly Pants but I’m done now. Expect to hear nothing of me for the next few weeks. It feels like at times like these I am too busy to even breathe.

October 7, 2008

weekly hate list

Posted in Bah!, Ranty Pants, The Thesis at 11:27 am by meldee

I dunno how some of the more emo, touchy-feely-esque bloggers can remain consistent in layout, theme, etc for so long. I keep getting distracted.

Because I am procrastinating work (what’s new) and generally feeling very angsty with myself and things around me…

The Weekly Hate List

1. The fact that White Rabbit Creamy Candies are bloody toxic and are going to be annihilated.

2. Superfruckingslow Internet in the office.

3. No news about the Bali Conference (but oh I’ve not mentioned this before aye? I’ll only elaborate when I get it pfft).

4.  Trawling shopping blogs and Liebemarlene Vintage, which is possibly my favourite blog at the moment, and feeling gloomy because I want to be out and shopping.

5. Not shopping, because firstly, I kind of shopped already in Singapore (exchange rate graarrhh!) and secondly…


7. Looking at The Thesis makes me physically ill and all brain function grinds to a halt the minute I open my chapters.

8. I have a month to finish The Thesis 😦 I’m not ready. It’s absolute rubbish and I hate it.

9. Daylight savings has started again in Melbourne. HATE. Daylight. Savings. Give me back my hour so I can talk to the boyfriend for that much longer! 😦

10. Mad hair. I very badly need a haircut but I want to wait till it’s a bit longer because if I cut it now it’d be too short. Yes, there simply is no pleasing me.

But to balance things out (I’ve got no Libra planets so this is my very lame attempt at being objective)…

The Weekly Love List

1. Watching hot Greek guys busting moves on the beach in tight Speedos in Mama Mia!. Twice.

2. Lemons to go with my green tea ❤

3. The wedding reception of a dear friend on Friday.

4.  Um…I can’t think of anything else I love this week o_O


August 26, 2008

on (four)ces

Posted in Angels, Random Ramblings, The Thesis at 9:43 am by meldee


Canon EOS Kiss, Somewhere in Penang.


I’ve been away again.

Way to go, Captain Obvious (one of my students loves this line).

But as I sit here on this (blank) Tuesday morning (I don’t have a window in this cell so I’m left guessing the state of the weather outside) with five chapters of my thesis handed in (BIG HURRAH!) and God-knows how many words written, I am experiencing an odd moment of stillness that befuddles me.

I like it, but I don’t. I’m bored of it already, but I also know I’ll be caught up in a mad flurry of something-or-other again soon. I’m tired of standing still, but at the same time feeling the wind created by something other than me (and I am not refering to flatulence here, mind you) is great.

Seems like I’ve been in limbo for the longest time.


Since I’ve been so terrigibly vague lately, with the BlogStalker and all, here are some (‘real life’) updates.

I discovered that we have an online branch of like the CIA, wooo~. It’s called CyberSecurity Malaysia and I suspect they track the IP addresses of whoever goes to their site (you pandai-pandai cari yourself la ok) or types them in a search engine. Their job scope is very vague (even more so than me!) but ah well. I’m guessing these were the folks behind all the blog arrests, and YouTube posts, etc. If they’re reading this…hello, CyberSecurity Malaysia people! Please do not investigate me, I lead a fairly boring and clean life.

Four Dahlings are reunited in the turf of SJ, which makes for fun times…but not overly, as this Dahling is often stuck in Uni from 7:30am (yah shut up I told you I’m boring) till about 5pm…or 9:30pm, depending on what mood I’m in and what day it is, and how freaked out I am about work. One more Dahling is going to Singapore soon to be reunited with her ManFriend, yet another one is going for job interviews and one more is flying back to the UK in a little over a week. BOO.

Oh! AirAsiaX has finally listened to my fervent prayers and decided to bloody fly to Melbourne already! This came a day after I was mooching over my Angel Cards and asking about Australia, and the cards Ask came out for the Present, and There’s Nothing to Worry About for the Future. So I asked, and I received 🙂 I got a return ticket for RM1,500. Sweet as! I’m leaving November 22nd and back January 21st. Now, I really really really want to be able to find a job I love there in those two short months so I can come back to SJ and grab more stuff (i.e. clothes and shoes) and relocate there to be with my own ManFriend! C’mon folks, visualise with me…

I am trulymadlydeeply obsessed with thrifted and vintage stuff lately. I love. And it seems to be all the rage now too! Awesome finds lately have been old 80’s chiffon hairclips that I’ve been wearing out at night as a hairpiece, which had a Dahling gushing that it looked soooo GossipGirl. *beams* Oh and my heeled brogues, bought for a happy-clappy RM29 from Bata. I kid you not. And I can bloody run in them too, they’re that comfortable.

I work alone nowadays. I’m not a big fan of major drama (though small dramas can be fun) but this recent bout of it has left me completely thrown. Consequently, I am in hiding. Sort of. Yeah, I know, back to being vague again.


Ooh! Celebrate Merdeka with a difference this year.

Come to Central Market this weekend and find out for yourselves!

OK I’m running out of things to be vague about and I need to go return my Cockburn book. Haha no, seriously, I kid you not. She’s a famousish feminist theorist dealing with ICT and gender.

August 5, 2008

where am i?

Posted in Happenings, The Thesis, Travel and Adventure, Uni at 12:00 pm by meldee

Here, there, God-knows where.

Canon EOS Kiss, M.University Cultural Night 2008.


So I’ve been away…don’t know how many have noticed, indeed, how many still stop on by as part of their blog-skipping routine. It’s four weeks into the semester and things are starting to go blah again, as they inevitably do. Have been feeling scattered and uneasy, and the pressure is mounting (as is the pile of work).

I’ve decided to firmly knuckle down this week before I head up North for an eating holiday with a Dahling. 2,000 words is the goal–how feasible this is remains yet unseen.

It has come to my attention that I have a blogstalker. While that in itself is hardly something to be shocked or horrified over, given the very nature of the Internet itself, the whole notion of stalking in general scares the bejeezus out of me. I never understood why some people do it, or comprehended the compulsive nature of it. I suppose I’m being quite contrary as I have stalked a few blogs in my time (now mostly fashion-oriented ones) but I hate it when online activity spills into my offline life.

So BlogStalker, stalk my blog all you want but please don’t give me meaningful looks in public. Good grief, the very thought of it… it’s enough to make me want to pee in my pants with fright.

I am perfectly aware that I am rabbitting on quite incomprehensibly.

For anyone who cares, indeed, I assume not many would, I am about 7,000 words into my thesis. This means I’m about a third done? Unfortunately, not much of this 7,000 words make any sense; it’s still a montage of dispersed arguments and disparate thoughts. Now I know why I was discouraged from tutoring, alas my pride required me to do it just to prove a point (and to earn money).


I have a new pet rock. I kid you not. I carry it in my pocket (starting today, seeing as how I got it yesterday) so consider yourselves warned, would-be-assailants, I have a pet rock and I’m not afraid to use it.

Listening to Yann Tiersen’s soundtrack for Amelie always makes me smile. I’ve been listening to it for the past..oh, four hours? It’s on repeat; it almost always is. Perfect for mood music (mood to do work, that is).

I am obsessing over my hair. Again. My Aries is fascinated with it and so I can hardly help myself.

Three months to Australia. The visa and return ticket have yet to be sorted, though. I’m not migrating there yet, so you can stop asking me polite questions or fretting that I may not return. I fully intend on bringing The Boy home with me again though and letting him experience Chinese New Year on the home turf.

Wanderlust’s hitting hard lately. The more I know I need to stay in, the further away I want to flee. Let’s hope the trip North this weekend and the sojourn down South at the end of September to visit a dear old friend will keep me motivated, and satiated.

Books on photography and vintage RM10 skirts have been one of my sources of joy lately. As have the long whispered conversations with The Boy, though I hope his Internet connection gets sussed out soon because my phone credit is depleting like that *snaps fingers*.

I want to crawl into some seaweed and stay there for a good while.

June 19, 2008

on realisations

Posted in Friends, Malaysia, My Home, Strange Feelings, The Thesis at 9:54 am by meldee


Taken with my Canon EOS Kiss, 50mm. My room.


I know, I know, I’m supposed to be at work.

After the mini-drama this morning when my usual computer wouldn’t log me in (there are five computers in my office, only three of which work–mine, D’s and the one behind my cubicle) because apparently the time on the computer and the main server wasn’t the same. I was growling quite ferociously because just a few hours ago I’d sworn that I’d transcribe at least one interview today.

Then I remembered to thank the computer for shitting on me (not literally lah ok) because it reminded me to be patient (yes, I’m still in my Reclaiming Zennity (wtf) phase).

So I hopped on to the computer behind me, checked emails, etc, and after a while, frustrated with the non-scrolly mouse and squinty old CRT monitor, I tried my computer again. And yayness, it works now.

So, um, my point is, um, I need to, um, recover from this morning’s, um, drama.

That’s why I’m blogging in lieu of working.

*defensively* But I will do it eventually! I, um, swear.

By the way, why on earth am I justifying myself to myself? In cyberspace at that. Jeebus.


So I had lunch with two friends of mine from primary school yesterday. I don’t know if they still read me regularly (heh), but if they do, holla, M and L! 😀

It’s been 10 years since we kissed our dark-blue-(sexy?)-white blouse uniformed days behind now, and of course it’s inevitable that people change. We were just updating each other over green tea and sushi, or rather, those two that see each other regularly were updating me on things that have happened lately.

Apparently M was not surprised at all that I’ve taken the path that I did. I am, and I look at myself each day with wonder. I certainly never would have guessed that the emotionally unstable, awkward, unpopular misfit kid that I was back then would turn into who I am today, though that’s not to say I’m not still a misfit kid…I reckon I disguise that fact a little better now.

We were talking about relationships, about the idea of marriage and settling down, about the phenomenon of “everyone who goes to Melbourne doesn’t want to come back, everyone who goes to the UK almost always does”, old friends, double lives, and such. The unavoidable question that came up was why I want to go back to Australia when “the country needs people like (me)”.

I guess no matter how many times I’m asked it, it always throws me a little each time. This country, every country, needs people like me. Like you. Like them. It’s unfair to assume that because some people are activists, warriors for social justice, policy makers, etc, that it’s their job to run the country and see that it doesn’t go to the dogs. It’s everyone’s responsibility, that’s why we’re citizens. That’s why we have the right to vote and question and not merely accept the status quo.

It stings that the thought even crosses the minds of people that I don’t love my country, though I know I hardly have control over what I think, what more what others do. Ah well.

On the topic of relationships, I was also asked if the cross-cultural thing was an issue. That stumped me a little. Besides the fact that T likes Vegemite and I hate the stuff (we’ve reached an amicable decision on Promite being our spread of choice), he uses funny language sometimes (as do I), and that he’s white and I’m…er, not, I never really thought of the ‘cultural differences’.

He wears jeans, I do too. He speaks English (or Australian), so do I. We know (almost) the same music and movies, we both believe in good manners, we can both hold our own in an argument but still respect each other.

And I know this may sound really obvious, but I’ve never seen him, or anyone else, as ‘that white guy’ that is so different from me. He’s just T. A person. I mean, of course we all do it, refer to someone as ‘the white boyfriend’ or ‘the Malaysian girlfriend’, but itsn’t it kind of arbitrary? It’s all just labels, words that don’t really mean anything.

Or at least they don’t really to me. But then again maybe it’s because I am such a product of M.University’s cultural critiques, etc? Have I thus lost my ‘Asian values’ and crossed over to the dark side? Am I sucking up to neo-Imperialism and turning into one of its many poster-persons?

I dunno. I really don’t. I’m not saying that I think M or L are wrong in saying what they did, or that I’m right, I’m just stating what happened and the corresponding thoughts that crossed my mind. And it struck me how just a few years ago I’d have chipped in, talking about how Western values have corrupted us all, and we’re fundamentally different because we are Asian.

But what is Westernness, or Asianness? I’m not disrespecting history or culture as in, you know, traditions, ceremonies, bla bla bla…I mean it as a whole. Isn’t it just different ways of doing similar things? Isn’t it like religion, where all paths ultimately lead to God/s? And who created these labels for things anyway, did Humankind (observe my attempts at being Politically Correct) not decide to make these distinctions? I hardly think they mulled over these things and its future implications/connotations for days/weeks/months before reaching a conclusion. Isn’t culture thus, to some extent, arbitrary?

Gasp. I think I might get burned at stake/flogged/stoned to death for heresay.

But I digress.

Anyway, like the title of today’s post says, I realised how much I’ve changed. How different things are, yet how achingly familiar. I still love my friends, and my family, and home, but I’m different now. I don’t think the way I used to, I don’t even feel the same.

Weird eh. One of those strange moments when home suddenly feels like a foreign land, and all things once-familiar feel just that much more strange.

Maybe this is a feeling that comes with age. Lever/age. Whatever.

May 30, 2008


Posted in Random Ramblings, The Thesis, Travel and Adventure, Uni at 9:33 am by meldee

It’s the last day of the semester, and I finally feel I can breathe a sigh of relief. It’s been a fun 13 weeks (for most of the part, I think I flew off the handle somewhere between Weeks 6-10, which are the usual killer periods) but I can’t wait to just bloody go on break.

And (yes, I’m whining here) it’s not even a real break, but a pseudo one. I’m in early on a Friday (tis eerily quiet about the 6th floor today, most of the lecturers take it off for fieldwork/research day) to try and force myself to knock out at least a couple thousand words on my 60% assignment (which is due in two weeks…groan) and work a bit more on my Introduction for The Thesis (I’m about 1,200 words in, but I’m deeply dissatisfied as everything sounds like utter rubbish).

To cheer myself up, I’m making a shopping list (I swear I have a latent Virgo in here somewhere, nothing about disorganised Pisces, or impetuous Aries, or flighty Saggi have anything on list-making, which is something I love though not to the same extent Miss Venn-Diagram Pet does) of things to buy in Bangkok.

Ironically, more than half of them are requests from family (my aunt requested 10 pairs of velveteen flip-flops. Now, really, why?!) who’ve asked for everything from shoes to hair products to leather flowers (believe me, I’m as bemused as you are). Didn’t they just go to Bangkok like, last month? Hmm.

Not to say I mind a whole lot, it’s just that I’m traveling with my Dad and brother, and I know for a fact I will get no mercy from them with my luggage. I forsee me juggling my duffel bag (to be checked in), backpack, dorky passport pouch (I despise these things with a vengeance, however I am more concerned with the safety of my passport and moulah and gadgetry rather than how much like a DVD seller I look) and camera bag, running for a bus or something, while those two prance on ahead.

Dad wants to cover his ass, so he’s already declared repeatedly that they’re not checking in anything, and if I want to carry “so much rubbish” I can carry it by myself. Huff. Very well for you to say, Papa Song, you don’t need to worry about carrying shampoo (given how he is borderline balding) or deodorant, or tweezers or razors to prevent hairy ‘pits. I can’t bloody carry on all that stuff!

Ooh, does anyone know if I’d be able to carry on my camera tripod though? I’m flying AirAsia, and am worried it might get dented or bashed up mercilessly, though I guess I can buffer it with my clothes. My check in luggage is ridiculously light at the moment. Dad’s already scoffing at me, saying that we’re going to do outdoorsy stuff (like whitewater rafting, oooooooh! Something I’ve always, always wanted to do before I died!) and not going for a fashion show.

Bah, men.


I’m really beginning to be sick to death of The Thesis.

I’m tired of explaining myself (already) and am sorely tempted to just do a half-assed job of it so I can actually reclaim my life instead of spending weekends in uni being miserably unproductive and subjecting myself to the godawful cafeteria food (because I’m too lazy to walk to Medan/Rock Cafe–good God, what a lameass name!–and I hate the catcalls and up-down looks from the mechanics in the workshops).

But on another level I know I’ve already programmed myself such, and being the bloody overachiever I am, I know I will not be content until I get First Class. I will bloody spend nights here if I have to! Kiasu kan! Sigh, what to do.

I feel like I’m a set of overused rechargable batteries. I wear out quickly, get recharged and am on Power Mode and super-cheery for a few days (I was crazyhyper the other day after Cuppacakes with Eva—I was asking all the lecturers if they could do cartwheels/handstands, and made futile attempts in the office with The Office Mate looking amusedly on) but then I begin to shudder to a halt. It’s times like these (now) when I lie, drained, in bed, having a Family Guy marathon and turning off the lights by 10.30pm.

I’ve had enough of this shit, really, but I know I have no choice but to go on :/ I just wish I had a longer-term solution, and one I would not get bored of so easily.

Damn my goldfish attention span.