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Daily

Extreme

I don’t know if there’s a word for how I feel. Love seems much too mild. This feeling is too strong, wild, potent and forceful. Too metal. I imagine this is how serial killers feel when they’re locked in on a target, how a heart attack feels when it yanks your breath away, how Christians feel when they’re feeling God-like power touch them.

This is the feeling I get sometimes when I’m just this fiercely obsessed about something. Almost…angry? I don’t know why. It’s the aggressive urge you get when you see an obscenely cute puppy and you just want to squeeze it to death.

This is how I’m currently feeling about Extreme’s music. The genius lyrics, melody, harmony, vocals and awesome musicality. From an era where musicians wrote magic because there were just no rules about what makes a hit song.

Obsessed with the entire Pornograffiti album. Start with these: Hole Hearted. Decadence Dance. Get the Funk Out. Play with Me. I’d list the entire album if you’d let me, but only because I wish you knew there’s so much more to Extreme than More than Words, even if it is a great song (made more amazing by Nuno’s harmony and Paul Gilbert in this video).

Daily

Now we know

The past month has been a crazy ride on this adulting train, and we’re not even reaching our station yet. Some of our friends already know this, but Clif and I are house hunting.

I’m met with good wishes when people find out – omg you guys are getting married?! – approval, congratulations and general positivity. It is a sentiment I then dampen by telling them not to congratulate me – it is not an achievement I feel I’ve earned and so doesn’t count. All I did was to agree to be married. It’s not something we had to work very hard for.

In fact, I didn’t feel a need to tell anyone, and I think everyone was confused by this. Posting a picture of my wrinkly dry hand on social media would have been easy..but I didn’t feel right doing it (which may have caused more problems on my end because I had to explain exactly this).

Congratulate me if and when we manage to be happily married for 10 years. I would probably have earned it then. Or maybe if we manage to organize a wedding/party because that would be an incredible feat considering our lack of event organization skills and general laziness.

So the only people we really officially told were our immediate families. Our friends found out when we were trying to get advice on buying property together. Yes! It is a thing, we are trying to crawl ahead in the next phase of adulthood. Now you know. (Maybe, or maybe you’re reading this in the future in which case, you’re late in knowing and it’s not your fault because I didn’t tell you.)

And I wish I’d known that it’d be this difficult (and expensive) to get a house we like. Maybe we’d have started listening about talks about Bidadari. It was a word thrown around a few years ago and I’d completely ignored it. Coming back to mock me every time I think about BTOs and when I see that my only options are Punggol, Sengkang, Yishun and Tengah. Where? No. Waiting 5 more years for a new flat to be built would mean that I’d be 35 when I move out. When? No.

So we’re making appointments. Researching questions to ask and things to look out for. Calculating budgets. Getting payslips. Submitting loan applications. Practicing my poker face and nonchalance (though I’m told I’m good at this). Viewing houses. Listening and getting advice from family and friends. Ignoring bits of advice from the family.

Wow they should’ve prepared us for this in school.

Finding out how much renovations cost. Finding out renovations don’t include furniture. Learning that people can expect housing prices to increase but it doesn’t mean that it’d be possible to sell for that amount. Learning that road noise in Singapore is a pain. Wondering if I would be able to be happy in a world where I could never open my windows ever or be subject to dust and fumes. Learning that if we’re serious we need to bring a chequebook along to make an offer.

Making plans. Downloading an amazing budget app to manage my finances better now. Finally setting up GIRO for my credit cards and handphone bills.

Popping by the unit we’re interested in unannounced to look at it at night and to meet the owner. Trying to learn negotiation tactics to make an offer below its listed price. Trying to sound less apologetic and like I know what I’m saying. Trying to not feel annoyed when I can’t get what I want. Asking for help for all of this.

They should’ve prepared us for this in school.

Things that make you an adult. Things all adults should know how to do. Things people don’t tell you about adulthood. There are tons of articles about this #adulting thing. Is it obvious that nobody has a clue?

We’re going to handle it. And this quote I stumbled upon just today makes me feel like it’s gonna be okay.

Your success in life is largely dependent on the number of awkward conversations you’re willing to have. – Tim Ferris

Now I know.

Daily, Writing

Witta, Queensland

I thought I’d show you this, what life looks like with peace. Where the buzzing of the roads become rustling of the trees, I hope you fall in love with life outside the streets. Then maybe when we’re old, we’ll watch the free skies be. And maybe when we’re old, we’ll live our lives like this. When days and weeks and months, turn into years and years of bliss.

Daily

Plant Parenthood

The not-having-kids thing. The i-want-to-move-out thing. Maybe it’s just something about the circle of life that creates a desire to be surrounded by living things. Millennial things.

I’ve always wanted to get some cacti and succulents in my visits to Bangkok but I’ve always been to afraid to even think about transporting them back to Singapore by plane. Turned out to be a lot easier than I thought, because all I needed to do was to open my mouth and ask the vendor at Chatuchak, who promptly said that he could pack it for me. Easy.

I also bought a ton of beautiful fake orchids, which are now laid out around the house. Am I becoming a plant lady? Okay then.

Daily

Mr Big

Three years ago I went to Japan to watch Mr Big live in concert with Clif, major Mr Big and Paul Gilbert fanboy.

I knew 3 songs at that concert.

The first non-Wild World/To Be With You/Just Take My Heart song I really enjoyed was Green Tinted Sixties Mind, which I heard over the speakers as “365”. We were in the corner seats near the stage and the speakers were muffled. Very confusing.

Me (after concert): I like that song! 365.
Clif: What?
Me: 365! It goes like *hums tune* THREE HUNDRED SIXTY FIVEEEEEE.
Clif: There’s no song like that.

Also got hooked onto Queen, and Extreme. Now feeling sad I missed a whole era of music and concerts.

But I’ve since been to two other Mr Big shows, added a lot more songs to playlist and learnt more about their career by reading old interviews.

So it was sad to learn that Pat Torpey died today.

And it was sad to think of how underrated they are. So here’s a nice, pretty radio friendly song about the peak of their career. Enjoy.

RIP Pat.

Daily

Ready?

The last lap of the Comprehensive Pilates Teacher Training is here. My performance and teaching evaluation is just one. sleep. away.

Can I just say that I’m terrified?! Even though I’ve been practicing almost every other day… there are just so many things that I’m not 100% about. Body placement, springs and equipment set up, intention of the piece, breath and movement sequence…Somehow I don’t think my practice will ever be enough. There’s so much to learn and my body and movements are still lacking.

The moving parts of the human body is complex; even more so when every single person is different. The teaching styles and cues that each person responds to, the muscular differences and imbalances, lengths of bodies and movement habits.

Perhaps the knowledge that I’ll never be ready is why I’m ready for tomorrow.

GetPocket aptly recommends me this article that says that you have different selves with different goals in your head, all trying to do what they think is best for the greater “you.” This makes sense. Right now a part of me is saying to watch an episode of Friends to unwind, another part of me wants to read through the Training manuals, and another’s saying to just go to bed and rest.

Now that I’ve spent some time writing this post, it’s midnight and I have no choice but to bring my manuals to bed and glance at them in a feeble attempt to calm myself.

Here’s me sending tomorrow-me a reminder to be open, brave and confident to perform and to teach to my best ability and to remember that conquering the evaluation is to receive feedback with open arms. Remember that time when you needed liquid courage? You’ll be okay. This is a good time to read these articles.

“It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings

Daily

Walking blind

Everyone’s posting reflective notes about 2017 on their social media. Happy, bittersweet things that happened in the past year, hopeful things for the new year. I’ve been trying to summon something hopeful for 2018. Perhaps I’ve run out of the spirit to fight for better things. I’ll blame it on the traffic.

Daily

Not okay today

Feeling a little lonely, a little blue. I wish I had the power to will myself up off the floor. Get my spine upright and tall. Something happened this week that felt like an obstacle was placed in the straight path I’ve been walking.

I decided to be a little selfish, which only made me feel shitty. Being self-sacrificing would have felt a lot worse, but it would’ve been the good thing to do. Is this why my mother’s such a lamb?

Then it happened again. I feel stuck in a loop and there’s no one I trust to give me that booster shot I need. Shoot me up with dopamine, take the brakes off this steep climb.

And I’m reminded of a time when I was in Polytechnic. Where a girl I called friend said pretty things to my face, and spoke ugly things behind.

I realise that I don’t trust the things people say.

Daily

In dependence

Years of my mother telling me not to have a boyfriend, and telling me that it’s perfectly okay (and probably better) if I don’t get married. Now it seems everyone expects me to and maybe I’ve bought into it. For no reason beyond the fact that we’ve been together for a long time.

There are some days when it doesn’t sound like a bad idea. But there are other days too.

I don’t want a legal contract with another human being to bind us in utilitarian harmony. What I want is an apartment. What I want is to get back to Australia for a month or three. What I want is to live away.

Has my desire to be independent turned into a dependence on someone else?

Daily

Farming EXP points in teaching Pilates

I clocked 4 straight hours of teaching today!

I was worried the entire week that I wouldn’t be able to last the marathon teaching, but I managed to clock in these hours teaching four different types of classes today. These included classes that I wasn’t confident in like BARE and Slider & Tubing.

I revised the night before, and then again in the morning and I felt that helped tremendously. I hope the students enjoyed the class because contrary to what I thought about attending BARE classes, I quite enjoyed teaching it.

Roller & Ball at 9am happened first. I’m getting a lot more comfortable with Roller & Ball so it’s getting more fun to teach. There was a student who previously came up to me and said that I had improved in my teaching, and thanked me for improving (!) You’re welcome, of course! I hope to keep improving!

Today, she told me that she enjoyed my class so much that it passed super quickly without her realising it. I feel so blessed to have students like that who affirm my teaching. Truly. It’s hard to know if students are enjoying class or not sometimes. Some grunts of pain, some peals of laughter. Maybe a slight increase in class size or having the same familiar faces in a class can signal that but otherwise, it’s not an obvious path of improvement.

Also grateful to have an incredibly encouraging Clifton Sim – who (at most times) drives me to the studio in the morning and then spends an obscene amount of time in the gym on his own to pass time.

Thanks for always pushing me harder and telling me to take up that extra class tomorrow morning to continue harvesting experience. But WHY do I have to wake up early again tomorrow?!

(Shout out to the Honey Lime Tea I bought at Fun Toast that helped me survive the consecutive hours of teaching. What a great decision and a good use of $2.40.)