Uniknya Singapura

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Merlion Gold Lion

I haven’t been writing, yes I know. I mean, I did, but not in the true sense, all those “Bits & Pieces random thoughts should be developed fully. I have also felt the disappointment of seeing so many blogs that I frequently visited does not do the same as well, so, yes, I owe everybody one- though technically this IS my blog and I don’t owe anybody anything but being a guys who are so eager to please, I succumb to the non-existence, imagined pressure.

Before that, just as a sort of side thought, I think I would definitely be a sucky academic writer. I use at least two adjectives for every noun, old timers in that would surely shook their head seeing all the empirical maxim flushed down the drain as I yap on and on.

I do feel tired at times when it comes to writing and rereading back what I wrote, sometimes the sentences were so forced, the description is so lagging that I feel like telling myself, “Enough of the adjectives already, when will the subject be revealed?!” Self-hate.

I think everybody would be laughing their ass off if I tell them that I actually take my writings seriously and that, given the chance, I would be quitting whatever day job I have just to write full time. A good writing needs research on the subject matter and not just blabberings fully loaded with personal prejudices. So all this while you have been getting lopsided shits from me.


I have just came back from Singapore. It was a rather disappointing one though, as I didn’t have much time to go around immersing myself on the local cultures. On one hand Singapore is no much different from us in Malaysia, but on the other hand, there are things that are done in a different way from us here, changes that occurs since the time both exist as different country.

That is why, over and over I emphasized the importance of knowing a knowledgeable local who can tell you stuffs about their place. I was hanging out with a bunch of Malaysians with minimal “essential” knowledge: just enough for them to know of famous shopping centers and how to walk/get the MRT to reach there. Yeah, Singapore is like a giant shopping mall.

I was tagging along, trailing them behind going from shops to shops selling their lifelong obsession: shoes. I hangout with two guys, Latino Heat, my sis’s boyfriend and their good friend, Average Joe. Average Joe is foremost the encyclopedia of shoes and also on a general sense, a branded apparel merchandise expert.

Lemme tell you about Average Joe. Now when I say brands up there, I don’t mean Gap or G2000, I am talking about those so-called ‘underground’ brands like aNYthing, SUPREME and UNDEFEATED. Never heard of those? That is because you are not cool enough. If you don’t know what to wear at your night to Ghetto Heaven or any cool big scale corporate sponsored rave party held either on top of a hill, runway on a defunct airport, shopping mall rooftop or equestrian park; Average Joe is the guy to consult.

I never knew the exact number but Average Joe sure has more shoes than you do. He is a collector of various limited edition Nike Air Max (I like particularly the Marvel crossover which he has the one for Hulk- which came together with a comic) and god knows what else- I never really check out his collection though- not really my thing. Point to any shoe to the guy and rest assured, he will give you info about it more than you can ever obtain from the ever pestering sales assistant at Royal Sporting House near you.

(Sorry if my writing after this is not congruence with what I wrote above, I was alternating between writing this entry with making props for my kayaking competition tomorrow- pics to be shown here soon. Damn I am so excited for tomorrow- check: today is Friday night, tomorrow, Saturday morning will be the day for the competition)

So there I was walking with two shoe freak- Latino Heat, a recent convert to the shoephilia religion as he succumbed to the power of the fashion intelligensia in the form of Average Joe. Nobody can blame him, prolonged exposure to the power of Average Joe (a contradictory name by now, not so average) will have such effect on any people. If I am his close acquaintance, I might be cracking my head thinking what to wear that most likely to get an agreeing nod from the master.

‘Enuff about the two clowns, most of the places I visit consist of shopping malls, shopping malls and shopping open air markets disguised as flea markets. This might be the first time that I visit any place, be it a state in Malaysia or another foreign country, that I did not visit a single location that has either historical or cultural significance. Yes, this might be the worst trip, in my own terms of course, that I have ever been. No offense guys, it’s not you, it’s me (hehe).

Ok, having me bitching about those guys, I admit, the aura of the living fashion God was too much for me to resist. I ended up buying three T-shirts and two pair of Vans slip-ons. I am not innocent, sue me. Visits after visits to outlets inevitably brought me to some goods that I really like and feel like owning. The Vans was very cheap, all three of use got 2 pairs each. So much for reading all those Crimethinc articles telling me to detach myself for all these silly material pursuits.

In a conversation I had with a new friend, I told her about my (recent) reliance to cigarettes (ok, not so recent on this) and alcohol. Just like I mentioned it before, that at least by having these to console me in the end of the day, I have something to rely on. Sure, it is destructive and all, but hell, at least they are the ones that I could rely on at the end of the day when I need something. Humans could never challenge the ever availability of these substances. Guess to an extent, that is what all the addicts feel in the end of the day, allowing their addiction to take over all their everything, devoting their lives to revolve around these attractive killers.

To some extent, the stuffs that you are able to procure at shops works the same way. Other than the role that it works for most people as an extension of their self- just as how the whole concept of Topman’s hipsterishness or Miss Selfridge’s missy-ness, there is something consoling about the purchase of these stuffs which has been manipulated by marketers of these produces all the wile. The ability to own a piece of the lifestyle or whatever concept bombarded and propagated through aggressive advertising invading our private lives through TV commercials and billboards has a very motivating effect- that by our capability to own- either the new Dopod, Vertu handphones or Bang and Olufsen soundsystem, define our success as a human.

Existence precedes essence. We are supposed to create the meaning of our own lives, if what the fella by the name of Jean-Paul Sartre was right. The tragedy is of course, before we even get to do that, it has been done for us, involuntarily, by the Art Directors and Copyrighters of advertising firms. Decide what you want in life. I regretted that it was two pair of Vans slip-ons for me. Not! I love the two pairs, the center of my attention now.

Well, the rest of the trip to Singapore was in betweens rushes from malls. Did not even get to at least typically checkout the nightlife there. Nada. We just had a drink at a pub nearby the hotel that we were staying at near Beach Road. The pub was probably the only place open past 11 p.m. at that row, so you could imagine how ‘happening’ it must have been.

I am happy for my sister. Sis, you made it, you make all of us proud of you. Not only your studies were fully sponsored, you finish it off well with a distinction. If only I am as good as you.


Written by yuenkokleong

November 7, 2007 at 3:48 am

Posted in Firing neurons, Travels

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