..:: Kellog ::..


Friday, October 31, 2003

Upon Hindsight

40 years later (or 39, or 27), I would probably look back at these college years and reflect on how all that encapsulated my life then (my current "right now") turned out be a mere blip in the course of my life. That is at once sad, scary and invigorating.
kellykelly, 10/31/2003 09:33:00 pm | link | 0 comments |

Thursday, October 30, 2003

Yin Shi Nan Nu

"Eat, drink, man, woman. Food and sex. Basic human desires. Can't avoid them! All my life, everyday, all I do. It pisses me off."--Chu to Old Wen

My third viewing of Ang Lee's 'Eat Drink Man Woman' last night was just as scrumptious as the first. It ranks comfortably in my top 10 movies of all time (probably top 5).

So many themes and familiarities I love about this movie. The characters are hilarious. My favorites have got to be the church-going oldest daughter Jia Jen (especially when she pussy-whips her husband with an intensity that could only come from religious smugness...I know too many aunties back home just like that) and the obnoxious Mrs Liang (especially when she bemoans about her white son-in-law in America who does nothing but play guitar in his basement and eat hamburgers with onions).

It's only a shame that the subtitles, with their literal translation, miss out so many of the subtleties in conversation. So many times I wanted to tell Pat and Natalie "oh man, no, that's not what she meant!" It only made me wonder how much I missed in the other non-Madarin foreign films I've seen.
kellykelly, 10/30/2003 04:45:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Tuesday, October 28, 2003

Strange Love

As Patrick unabashedly tries on the bright red bra for his Halloween costume in the middle of the streets in Chinatown, I don't think I have ever felt a more intense pang of love for this guy.
kellykelly, 10/28/2003 07:56:00 am | link | 0 comments |
Oh, San Francisco!

This weekend only confirmed how I can only live in a major city...preferably a weird one like San Francisco.

We were having a dinner party at the Castro on Saturday night and a group of men dressed up as Hooters girls walk past our window. We cheered them on, I yelled out to them "I want your tits, babe!", while one pointed at my boyfriend and went "oh my!"
At 3am, we crashed a house party a block away. Talk about professional partiers. It was a 3-story house where the first floor was cleared as a dance floor, the backyard had a mega-screen projection up on the wall, a chill-out room up on the attic with another DJ spinning down-tempo music, cushions and chairs you can sit on with access to the rooftop.

The next day, we took the bus down to Chinatown for a dim-sum lunch, after which we walked a few blocks to the financial district to chill at an Irish pub where there was a huge group of power-lesbians drinking up a storm. On the bus home, there was crazylady with a pram and a plastic doll in it and 2 trannies yakking away in front of us. On the walk home up Castro, there was a man standing outside the Thai Restaurant without his pants on. One could spot his bare ass across the street.

Patrick and I could only look at each other and laugh and say "I love this city!" No wonder we miss it everytime we take a short trip away.

Once again, leaving will be so painful.
kellykelly, 10/28/2003 07:50:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Kim gave birth to a baby boy last Thursday. We visited her on Saturday. That baby has got to be the cutest newborn I have ever seen. I do honestly consider most newborns pretty darn ugly.

But this boy (Kierin Blakely, talk about a superstar name) is just captivating. You can literally watch him get used to his basic human mechanisms of breathing, smiling, crying, frowning. His face had a hundred different human expressions every minute. I kept thinking of how graphic artists (especially after watching the awesome Animatrix) would love to record him for analysis. It was amazing. For half-an-hour as Patrick held him (I would have been too stressed about dropping that bugger), I had my thumb grabbed by Kierin's fist and had him sucking on my finger. I was transfixed. If I were 10 years older, I'm sure my uterus would have made a stir.
kellykelly, 10/28/2003 07:31:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Saturday, October 25, 2003


Uh oh, we just got Netflix. Watch out!

Natalie's adament about educating me in legendary 80s classics, like you know, like Caddyshack, Revenge of the Nerds, Porky's, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, etc...I have been warned.
kellykelly, 10/25/2003 02:56:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Friday, October 24, 2003

oh yeah, and...

"I am gripped by the knowledge that I have nothing to say...Everything I have to say has been said a million times and better. Plus it's a cliche. Plus--and here's the kicker--it doesn't change anything. The inevitability of history hits me like a mallet over the head."
"...my pamphlet is not being written. I cannot write it, and the reason is this: pamphleteers are fundamentalists. They believe in something without a doubt. They know they are right. They know. They have the knowledge. They know what is what. They are not flounderers. They are not confused. Their message is not ambiguous. They know they know, and they share their fucking unequivocal knowledge. Can you imagine this state of mind? I can't. It must be close to religious conversion (in some cases it is). Ah, the sweet rested mind. The mind that knows and wants to share."

--Jenny Bitner 'The Pamphleteer' (taken from 'The Best American Nonrequired Reading')

(note: attach quote to end of previous post)

Funny how you read things pertaining precisely to a loose thought you had an hour ago but was inept in expressing it. See? See? "Everything I have to say has been said a million times and better."
kellykelly, 10/24/2003 09:26:00 am | link | 0 comments |

BAYCAT (Bayview Hunters Point Center for the Arts and Technology) held their fundraiser/awards ceremony/screening gala last night. I went on a last minute invite from Patrick. A couple of his students were involved in the project.

Amidst the free wine and free sushi and wonderful music from Herbie Hancock, I was touched (ok, a cheesy term 'touched', but here, appropriate nonetheless) by how people engage themselves to make these kid's lives better. Made me recall all the awesome teachers I had...Made me realize (or remember) how my entire education was an alternate world constructed for me (students). By that I meant that my life was just school. Maybe it was Singapore, and my parent's obsession with education (mummy's a teacher; papa works for the Ministry of Education); my world revolved around school and I really had nothing else to worry/think about. I studied, and was supposed to study. I read a lot, given that TV was banned from us on weekdays (good decision, papa). Hell, the topic of dating, boys, sex was beyond the scope of my comprehension even till junior college (that's high school for you Americans).

And the whole point about educational projects it seems is to create that "world of school" for the kid; so that ideally, they are allowed to read, learn, "discover their inner creativity", play in this world where issues like urban poverty, guns, wars, rape, economic trade-offs are sheltered.

Some old dude went up to the podium in the middle of a speech asking for donations to this project. He wrote a check for $25,000 and told them there were 3 more where that came from. $100,000 from eccentric old man who almost rudely waved the check in their faces and disappeared, thus creating a dramatic ripple-through-crowd moment that you see in movies. Hey, whatever it costs to create that shelter of the alternate world and allow for right-timing release to the real world.

I was the lucky one. I never grew up in the projects. I never had to worry about anything else other than school. I was never pre-maturely thrown into realities which granted must be experienced eventually (except for the unfortunate spoiled few that remain sheltered and thus, close-minded). The timing in my life has so far, in my opinion, been just right.

But timing is everything, innit? Which brings me to another point, also pertaining to reality vs the classroom. There's a frustrating duality emerging more and more clearly in my life lately. I'm beginning to see the dangers of placing people who exist only in the academic realm (researchers, theorists, policy makers) in power. Having the natural propensities to be excited by economic models and philosophical/political science theories (nerd-alert! nerd-alert!), I caught myself yesterday being surprised by micro human interactions (disadvantaged kids who need good teachers who are being side-lined by longer-term economic growth policies). So it's an old debate: "stupid white men" (Michael Moore) in government who have been sheltered all their lives in their Ivy League education making policies for people whose lives they have no conception of. I see that in my old high school (Raffles Junior College), all these kids having nothing else to worry about other than school, eventually staying in that same bubble and going into my government. Now, that's scary.

But what do I know? Oh, I aced both my midterms. I wrote essays arguing for and against 'hegemonic stability theory', about the American/Japanese/German models of capitalism, and how I would geographically and economically produce a new idea for hard disk drives. I definitely got a happy buzz from the grades cos I worked my ass off for them...but it'll only add to my frustration on what the fuck can/should I be doing with all these knowledge that I keep pickin' up. Because I ain't smart enough to do shit with it. I just know what makes my graders give me an A for an essay so I give them that. But I never really know how to apply that; I never have a point of view because I just stay undecided after reading various arguments. The world is too complicated out there. I kinda liked my fantasy world of books and theories and essays. Everything is a whole: there's always an end, a synthesis, a resolution, a formulated answer.
kellykelly, 10/24/2003 07:18:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Thursday, October 23, 2003

It's Security, Stupid

Despite being a political economy major, I hardly ever make a stand on political issues. The probability of being wrong on complex political problems can be 100% just because there is never just one answer.

But Bush's noisy whining about terrorism at the recent APEC summit irks me. Thank you Economist for acknowledging how he is using an economic summit for his political agenda. No wonder Mahathir got pissed off. Now, it's still controversial as to what Mahathir meant with his Jews-rule-world-by-proxy comment.

But the Bush administration is starting to make me feel sick in the stomach.

We are reading Stephen Krasner's 'Structural Conflict: The Third World Against Global Liberalism' for class. He argues that the Liberals (as in people adhering to liberalism as a political ideology, what Americans call 'Conservatism') misunderstand the primary motivations of the less developed countries (LDCs): they are interested in increasing international power and their sovereignty (nationalism), not only their economic position. Funny how Bush appears to be pushing this agenda on them.
kellykelly, 10/23/2003 05:54:00 am | link | 0 comments |

I cannot believe that I am arranging my class schedule for the last time. Phase I of my Telebears is tomorrow. To clue in non-Berkeley folks, that means I will be signing up for Spring 2004 classes, my final semester at Berkeley. The thought of graduating and leaving is painful.

My life here has simply been a privilege. My college life has been astounding: just looking at my list of possible classes to take (Economics of the environment, Financial economics, International trade, Popular culture in 20th Century China, History of modern southeast Asia) gives my nerd-radar a buzz. My Berkeley/San Francisco lifestyle has been enviable. In the past 20 months alone I have gone to Paris (twice), Madrid, Barcelona, Bordeaux, Las Vegas, New York, Boston, Florida, Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, Beijing and Shanghai. I have had the time to read a crazy number of books, write a crazy bunch of papers, fall crazily in love and dance like crazy till dawn many times.

In about 10 months, it'd be time to go back and pay my dues. Try I will not to whine about it (ya gotta get the job done). But dammit, it's gonna be hard.
kellykelly, 10/23/2003 05:07:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Something Interesting

My mummy sent me this some time back:

"Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at an Elingsh uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer is at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae we do not raed ervey lteter by it slef but the wrod as a wlohe. Ineteristng isn't it?"
kellykelly, 10/22/2003 11:15:00 pm | link | 0 comments |

Friday, October 17, 2003


I finished Ian McEwan's 'Atonement' (I kinda like this novel about novels) at the Sunset Party on Sunday. I was dying for a good easy page-turner (after going through The Penguin's History of the World, Doctor Zhivago and various political economy readings for school), and I sure as hell got it. My first Ian McEwan novel, and it certainly will not be my last. I got the same feeling from McEwan as I did from Zadie Smith (White Teeth*) and Dave Eggers (AHWSG*) and Susan Orlean (Orchid Thief*) and Nick Hornby (Fever Pitch*), they are just so clever; making me wish I could be just as.

* only these novels, not their other works which have tended to disappoint. Except Nick Hornby's High Fidelity; except Susan Orlean whose other works I have never or not yet read.
kellykelly, 10/17/2003 03:22:00 am | link | 0 comments |
Reel Life

Is one supposed to pick up the public telephone when it rings as you walk past it at dusk?
I didn't.
No wonder my life is not a movie.
kellykelly, 10/17/2003 03:16:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Wednesday, October 15, 2003


queer ( P ) Pronunciation Key (kwîr)
adj. queer·er, queer·est
Deviating from the expected or normal; strange: a queer situation.
Odd or unconventional, as in behavior; eccentric. See Synonyms at strange.
Of a questionable nature or character; suspicious.
Slang. Fake; counterfeit.
Feeling slightly ill; queasy.
Offensive Slang. Homosexual.
Usage Problem. Of or relating to lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, or transgendered people.

Usage Note: A reclaimed word is a word that was formerly used solely as a slur but that has been semantically overturned by members of the maligned group, who use it as a term of defiant pride. Queer is an example of a word undergoing this process. For decades queer was used solely as a derogatory adjective for gays and lesbians, but in the 1980s the term began to be used by gay and lesbian activists as a term of self-identification. Eventually, it came to be used as an umbrella term that included gay men, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgendered people. Nevertheless, a sizable percentage of people to whom this term might apply still hold queer to be a hateful insult, and its use by heterosexuals is often considered offensive. Similarly, other reclaimed words are usually offensive to the in-group when used by outsiders, so extreme caution must be taken concerning their use when one is not a member of the group.

I have always liked the word "queer" somehow, back in my pre-US days when I only knew the first 3 definitions of the word. I always thought it carried a 'cute' connotation with eccentricity. How lovably quirky I would be if someone were to call me "queer".

I never turned out to be queer, in all definitions of it. I am attracted to (attractive) men for sure. And unless you take the natural propensity of my face to sulk/look-bitchy/therefore-unsocial (and that's not a 'cute quirk' I desired anyway), I am truly one of the most boringly conventional (I add risk-aversity to that definition of conforming to established practice) people I know.

So I have abandoned hopes of possessing a 'queer cute quirk' and tuned my conformist propensities to my advantage.

The main point of this blog entry was to say I give in to the hype: Queer Eye for the Straight Guy is absolutely hilarious.

But I kinda got caught up in the word 'queer'.
kellykelly, 10/15/2003 12:44:00 pm | link | 0 comments |
Weekend Hangover

*Groan*...crawling out of bed after a heck of a weekend is painful.

There was James Zabiela on Friday night. James Z is God on the turntables. He's so technically proficient, and so Beck-ish cute, you can't get off the dance floor nor tear your eyes away. Then there was Lumafest on Saturday afternoon, Christopher Lobsinger at Anu at night, then a hoo-hah Sunset Party up in Novato (where I made a hula-hoop friend whom I just found online) that boinked me out big time.

In between the socializing partying, we made room for quality couple-time as Pat and I chilled with campy movies like Can't Buy Me Love, freaky-weird movies like Legend, and scary-ass movies like Identity. I amused myself by taking Pat-as-only-white-boy-in-Chinatown-bus/Pat-as-only-white-boy-skateboarding-down-Chinatown/Pat-as-only-white-boy-in-Chinatown-park pictures on Monday afternoon (Indigenous People's Day) where we enjoyed a dim-sum branch on a sunny terrace at a restaurant innovatively named "Chinatown Restaurant".

'Twas a perfect weekend that makes the week just that bit harder to face. I really shouldn't complain given that my next weekend comes up in a couple of days (4 day weekends, baby!).
kellykelly, 10/15/2003 03:54:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Friday, October 10, 2003

Alain de Janvry

Professor de Janvry teaches my Economics of Development class. I think he is absolutely wonderful. Teachers like him make many other professors seem like stuck-up academic snorts working in their hubble and bubble of academic intellect without a human face. Teachers like him make me feel so lucky to be studying in this university.

Our class was about the economics of fertility today. Bunch of economic models. I really like economic models. They are fun to look at. And play with.

Food for thought:
the desired number of children declines with increases in income, therefore, children are inferior goods (...not really. But that was funny though.)
the number of condoms provided in Africa is 3 per man per year (...getting boinked merely 3 times a year is highly unlikely, if not highly unfortunate).

I would like to write more and have a point to these random bits of thought. But I have a class right now.

Dammit, I enjoy school. I need 4 more years to inhale all these academic shit. Me likey.
kellykelly, 10/10/2003 05:00:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Thursday, October 09, 2003

I Am...Exported Labor

We are supposed to email in a commentary page weekly to our Geography 110 mailing list as our homework for the section. It is supposed to be a discussion about the readings; but since people don't do the readings, they digress and talk about the lecture/section discussions.

Here's one email from an American student. Always interesting to hear what they have to say about my country. I kinda like this girl; she's pretty direct. I have underlined the parts I laughed out loud at:

I'm attracted to the focus of this course upon Singapore. I considered the city-state insignificant even after meeting several Singaporeans at Berkeley. [I can only hope that I have not/will not induce someone to consider where I come from to be insignificant] This course has placed my knowledge of the place in a global economic context. My friends personify the government's commitment to skilled labor and technology [I can only hope that I have not/will not induce someone to consider me a -personification- of my government's commitment to skilled labor and technology.]. Apparently Singapore exports its youth to the United States for their education. While some are privately supported, a number are official government scholars. The government selects its very best students from its
intensively competitive academic environment for the opportunity to attend a prestigious American university with tuition fully paid, in addition to granting a stipend for living expenses. It will pay up to half a million dollars for a Singaporean's education. In exchange, the student is bound to work for the government for a few summers and the following six years. My
former suitemate is studying engineering (nanotechnology). By the time she completes her doctorate, her exceptional expertise should augment Singapore's technology-oriented economy.
I discussed the skeptical attitude of the video which we viewed in section with my Singapore friends. They would rather the rest of the world stop labeling the ruling regime "authoritarian," as they do not feel in any way repressed. However, one noted that Paul Krugman has termed Singapore a "paper economy," which will eventually collapse.
As for the reading, I find the Companion to Economic Geography exceptionally dull, not especially valuable, and not particularly worth discussing.

I don't feel repressed. I just worked with the system that bought my freedom for half a million dollars (I think it's probably closer to a quarter of a million dollars, given interest).

Given my scholarship to come study at this "prestigious American university with tuition fully paid, in addition to granting a stipend for living expenses", having "up to half a million
dollars" invested in this "Singaporean's education", being bound to work for Singapore for six years (although not the government but a bank...but they are all linked to the government in some way or other anyway), and therefore ultimately serve to "augment Singapore's technology-oriented economy", I now officially feel more than ever like an ant in a colony.

kellykelly, 10/09/2003 08:48:00 pm | link | 0 comments |

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

The Gubernator

Somehow, I keep thinking abouut that scene in 'Demolition Man' (and I'm not the only one) where Sandra Bullock tells Stallone that Schwarzenegger was president of the US. Well, he is governor of California now. Hence my taunting to Patrick "nyuk nyuk, Arnie is your governor, Arnie is your governor..." To which he replied "God, I'm moving out of this state!"

It ain't funny though. I met Pat, Eric, Doug, Keyatta, Amin, Alex, Ana, and a whole bunch at the Civic Center (they voted, I didn't for obvious reasons). They made a carnival out of it (SFans make a party out of anything). There were 3 DJ booths set up, with a huge stage in the middle for a fashion/fire-twirling show. Sen-sei and DJ Manny rocked the 2nd Sunday DJ booth. Ravers came from nowhere and danced crazy right in the middle of Civic Center. We went into the Civic Center building for them to vote. There was a 45 minute wait in line. Alex flailed, not voting because the wait was too long (first sign of arbitrary voting. Who are the people that bother to register and vote?). Pat and Eric wouldn't be able to hold up to their consciousness as teachers to not vote and tell their students to. Plus, they wanted no for recall. By the time we finished dinner at Tu Lan (where I met a Singaporean girl (I can spot Singlish a mile away) who brought her mom there..."....just because the name is Tu Lan! Hahahaha! Tu Lan!" she cried. I went "finally! Someone understands! These Ang Mohs have no clue." I think I found a new friend.) and walked home a couple of hours later, we passed a bar on Castro that had the news on which showed Gray Davis congratulating Arnie. It meant that Pat and Eric's votes weren't even counted because Arnie won by such a wide margin. We felt sick.

Democracy is noisy enough as it is. I find my Singaporean statism creeping up insiduously. I feel guilty for it; but should I? Point is, I agree with the Economist that the recall is inefficient. Elected officials shouldn't be made to face ousting just because people don't like him. In Economics terms, the elected official then faces a problem with long-term investment and cost-benefit analysis that can prevent an effective leadership. 12% of Californians voted to have this recall election in the first place. How many even voted him in? And just because of Arnie-hype, the dismal voter turnout culture of California turned around; this is the one good thing about political Arnie, argues the Economist. Californians should learn to vote, and if it takes The Terminator to make them remember to, so be it.

The US has solid enough institutions to tolerate aberrations like that without unraveling its system. But things like that make me believe even more that the US is an anomaly of the world, unique to itself, therefore, the "universality" of their style of democracy and neo-liberalism cannot apply to the rest of the world (hence, they should quit pushing their values on us...their Americanisms, MTVisms, consumerism, and other -isms, are addictive enough as it is). A Singapore, with completely different geography and history, will not have a noisiness of democracy like that if only because of its sheer tininess.

I wish our elections would be coupled with kick-ass house music with people raving to it too. I wish I can watch uncensored Sex and the City episodes in Singapore. But as 'authoritarian' as our government is, it stiill is probably the optimal system for now, given that our tininess requires us to be so vulnerable (high trade-ratios) to the ebbs and flows of the international econmy anyway.

That is, until the authoritarian government corrupts itself. Then one can only hope that the corruption will result in a split within the government with equally capable people (for our government does have extremely capable people...they take all the capable people, that's why the opposition parties are so inapt) on either side, so a peaceful turnaround can happen. But it will not happen, I don't think, in the American way. It will be done our way. I keep my fingers crossed.
kellykelly, 10/08/2003 10:53:00 pm | link | 0 comments |

From the Economist's 'Singapore Brief':

Small moves
Singapore's zealous censors have backed off on two fronts. A 20-year ban on Cosmopolitan, a women's magazine outlawed for promoting “sexual permissiveness”, has been lifted. This autumn, the hit American television series “Sex and the City” will reach small screens across Singapore, though it will be heavily edited. "

I wonder what SATC episodes would be like without tips picked up from Samantha's innovative positions. Horrible, I predict. In compensation, I will be smuggling my SATC DVDs back home and intend to throw major SATC-viewing parties (shhh....) for my Singapore friends in the (unfortunately, near) future.

Reading this makes me feel like I am taking my accessibility to sexual depravation for granted.
kellykelly, 10/08/2003 03:57:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Tuesday, October 07, 2003

"Lucky you are gay."

A man in a sparkly purple miniskirt and Fly-like sunglasses crawled up to me and licked my thigh as I aimed my camera at him.

Another yelled out to me "Sexy skirt, babe!"

Another man smacked my (and I mean smacked HARD, goshdammit) ass.
I gasped, turned around and saw him, while holding on to his boyfriend's hand, grin back and me and say "sorry, I just had to do it." Still gasping from the smart on my cheek (which I kinda enjoyed), I wagged my finger at him and said "Lucky you are gay, boy!"

Gay men get away with things straight dudes get thrown in jail for. So maybe I was looking for trouble with a naughty school-girl micro-mini-that-looks-like-a-scarf-supposed-to-be-worn-with-tights-but-worn-without-cos-the-weather-was-hot out. But I assumed the Castro Street Fair was the safest place to wear it.

...it was actually (and unfortunately). I felt thrown into a strange fantasy world, pressed into a crowd of horribly hot half-naked men, all gay.

Like a kid in a candy store with inedible candies. My boyfriend's sister and I spent the day gaping and ogling. Lucky they're gay, I say, or I'd be feeling very guilty with these impure thoughts while my boyfriend stands next to me.

Then again, he's got nothing to worry about next to these men:

The last dude kept insisting I got a full body picture with the shows cos "the outfit is just not the outfit without the shoes..get the shoes, hun."

More cute than crazy, the Castro Street Fair was like the Disneyland version of the Folsom Street Fair (Re: Sept 29: Debauchery). No public cock-sucking; no public balls-fondling; no whipping...only cuddly cocks handing out comic-brouchures ("The Adventures of Healthy Penis: Fighting Syphilis").

It takes so much more to shock these days.
kellykelly, 10/07/2003 02:01:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Sunday, October 05, 2003

Sparks at the Boom Boom

Melvin Sparks, apparently the Acid Jazz Guru (I say apparently because I know next to null about acid jazz), rocked the Boom Boom Room last night.

We chose Sparks over the sure-thing Jimmy Van M at 1015, who's highly known in a genre I know I like (read: am passionate about). Just for something different. 'Twas a risky call, but paid off marvelously. Like Ziggy Marley's free concert at the Oakland Arts and Music Fest last month, Sparks and his band were able to make me captivated by a genre I never knew I liked in the first place. Like finding a broccoli dish delicious when you hate broccoli in the first place; you know it's a great recipe then. So it's kinda like that...(?)
kellykelly, 10/05/2003 03:22:00 am | link | 0 comments |
Siegfried & Royyyyyyyyyiiiiiieeeee!

I feel guilty for laughing in incredulity after Keyatta read out loud the subtext "A 9-year-old white tiger attacked Roy Horn of "Siegfried & Roy" during a Friday night performance on the Las Vegas strip -- the magician and trainer's 59th birthday.

But the poor dear is in critical condition. Oh Roy, you and Siegfried are legends.
kellykelly, 10/05/2003 12:42:00 am | link | 0 comments |
Oh my, lump in the bed

Taking time off bombing other nations, Prez Bush pens a lovely poem for his wife.

I love CNN's explanatory write up:

As her husband watched quietly, she recited it.

"Roses are red/Violets are blue/Oh my, lump in the bed/How I've missed you."

Bush sometimes refers to his wife as a lump in the bed.

kellykelly, 10/05/2003 12:36:00 am | link | 0 comments |

Saturday, October 04, 2003

Gone too Soon

I attended a memorial service for a 14 year old boy last night. I only knew of David Maloa because he was a recent student of Patrick's. He died from an accidental gunshot. Despite the paper's vague account of the event, apparently he and his cousin were playing Russian Roulette for kicks.

The nauseating air of death just hit me as I walked into the crowded mortuary where the memorial service was held. It's the death of a young one that hits you in a different way. I didn't even know the kid. I was 2 degrees of separation from that kid. Pat is the one all torn up; I was there to support him. I was supposed to feel 2 degrees of separation from grief. But I wanted to cry the moment I stepped in.

Then I remembered the last time I was affected by death of a young one. It was a neighbour of mine. His name was David as well. He was 3-4 years older than I was. He was part of our neighbourhood gang of kids, 5-6 of us, who'd play together almost every evening. As far as I can remember, David, Mohammad Fadzlin, my brother and I made up my 'core' group of neighbourhood buddies who'd play hide-and-seek, race on our BMX bicycles/'Racers' (that came into fashion after BMX lost its trendiness), play soccer (I was always made the gratituous goalkeeper cos I was the only girl), marbles, computer games (I only liked Sonix...and only the first 3 stages cos they were easy), etc, etc.

About 5 years ago (could be 4, could be 6...), my mummy told me "David from house #11A" (...not #13 as it should have been because #13 was an unlucky number) had leukemia. About 10 months later, we attended his funeral at house #11A. Wakes and funerals had until then, always been for the Old People, the Grandparents, the Grandparents of friends, etc, for me. I had seen dead people before, even touched my paternal grandfather, maternal grandmother, when they passed. But when I saw David in his coffin, I felt an oppressive nausea slap me in the face for the first time. He looked nothing like himself, all painted like a wax dummy and like a morbid joke, he had a baseball cap placed on his head 'casually' like this tall, good-looking basketball-playing neighbor of mine always did. But it turned out looking so deliberate and fake. I don't recall ever seeing anyone from his family more than twice since then. I think they still lived in house #11A. but house #11A always had that fence (even when David was around), the only fence in the neighbourhood where you couldn't look into the house.

I saw David Maloa's schoolmates wearing "RIP David" T-shirts that they made. The death of a schoolmate was always a 'special' event, an event that 'shook' the school, an event that made for the bulk of every conversation in the students' chatter, an event where every teacher would make their honorary statement at the beginning of each class (announcements on where you can get therepy if you need it; "what can we learn from this? how do we prevent this in the future?"), an event that justified flying the school flag at half-mast. The last time that happened to me was in Raffles Junior College (11-12th grades). Two girls drowned in an accident while at their orientation camp in Pulau Ubin. Everyone had gone through that orientation camp, which was complusary for all new 11th graders (hence, added to the extended sympathy, a guilty self-consciously self-centered pang of "It could have happened to me!"). I remember that wave of shock, all the conversations pertaining to the accident, how my teachers talked about it (Mr Purvis, of all, made the most respectful speech. But I love Mr Purvis, my favorite teacher of all time, so I'm biased), and how it rained exactly in that minute of silence we held at the courtyard that morning which we all were freaked out by (for the rained stopped right after the minute of silence was over).

I am wondering how I am going to wrap up this blog entry. It was supposed to be about David Maloa. It was supposed to be about catching a glimpse into a world I have read so much about but knew nothing of--the world of urban ghetto kids, stuck in their ghetto, impoverished worlds, and the circumstances they are subjected to; the world of legal guns and the Columbine-esque problems it carries. It was supposed to be about the grief from lost opportunities when a young kid dies.

There is always something that we should learn from an event like that, isn't it? Like something that generates so much grief could not be gratuitous. Things are supposed to happen for reason. Oh, this (xxx's death) teaches us to live everyday like it's our last. This (xxx's death) means that we should tell our mother/father/sister/brother/husband/wife/boyfriend/girlfriend/friends that you love them. The lost opportunities from this kid's death must be turned into something positive, like an increased love in the community, lessons to be learnt, etc.

But though a death like that sends a ripple of grief throughout a community, the hype/conversations/shock wears off with time, and the people 2 or more degrees of separation from the death move on, usually almost untouched. For what else could we do? "People die." "Shit happens." "There are more dying children in Somalia/Congo/Afghanistan/Iraq (insert current-event of choice)." Etc. *shrug*? I wonder if I were one of the few directly connected (family/close friends) to the death, would I be fucking pissed to think that my loved one's death was categorized as one of the many in those peripheral people's lives that it was supposed to teach them a lesson about life/love/blah blah blah that they'd move on from? That it was a subject of someone's blog entry, as one of the few deaths she remembered affecting her personally more than other Older People's deaths? That this death has been used as a proxy to reminisce about a childhood, a favorite teacher? That this blogger cannot find any lessons to be learnt, cannot find a conclusion for her blog entry about the loved one's death, and feels guilty for it? Bitch.
kellykelly, 10/04/2003 01:28:00 am | link | 1 comments |