had i the heavens' embroidered cloths,
enwrought with golden and silver light, the blue and the dim and the dark cloths of night and light and the half-light, i would spread the cloths under your feet: but i, being poor, have only my dreams; i have spread my dreams under your feet; tread softly, because you tread on my dreams.




after some prodding from spence, here is the next entry in this wholly inconsequential blog.

exams are/were over. are. i suppose. no point talking more about it. post exam 'class' dinner outing was at fish&co at the glasshouse. tried to entice them into going to the blue moo at ymca, but the remaining survivors preferred to go drink at chijmes. being teetotallers, moses and i sat there watching them drink. pictures are available at justiny's blog.

other than that, really, the holidays have not been much. pretty much boring me out of my skin. reading a lot, however. finishing pj o'rourke's eat the rich, and then starting on michael connelly.

can't wait for school to start, actually. kill me. have watched monty python and the holy grail and dogma again. cast away as well, last night on channel 5. that was a pretty good movie. shall rewatch band of brothers as well.

'more than you will ever know.'



econs midterm was ... actually easy, but i messed up the last question, which probably means i have probably destroyed my chances of getting an a or even a b. sigh. anyway, i just hope that the contract will be signed and cleared to go as soon as possible. the line of credit had better be open. hope. then i would know what the next few steps in my life would be. got to learn to live with it. to have the power to make my dreams come true. when? i don't get so very depressed anymore. i suppose that's a good change. a change will do you good.

move. get a license. get a car. get a move on. it's funny. it's like something just clicked in my head. like i feel like i know what i want now, and how i should go about doing it. work. further education. it's like i know what i want my life to be like, finally, and everything is linked.



thinking more and more about religion - where am i? where do i stand? if i were to commit, would i be able to commit with conviction and without a guilty conscience that i am faking my faith? would i commit because i believe or because it was a prerequisite to something else? where's jon when i need him to explain the bible to me... and so it is, really. i have nothing more to offer than my dreams. what else can i give?

next friday is an important day. not just because it is the date of micro-econs mid term 2, but also because the contract should be signed that day. with that, economic prosperity beckons, and the second last obstacle to my dream of doing masters is gone. (the last being my ability to do it in the first place!)

despite all my earlier complaints about the workload in smu, life has been much happier ever since. all i need now is just a missing piece to the puzzle, and i suppose i would be very much content.



finished ltb journal, but it probably should be proof-read one more time. intermezzo on monday was actually quite boring, sad to say.

omfg. i have a damn headache. my throat is perennially dry. my joints ache. have not felt like this since a long time when. i close my eyes and the darkness only amplifies the sensations. so close yet so far apart. when will it end? i am struggling with myself, and actually winning. play by ear.

more work to come. and to finish. what will i be doing in december? not back to the army, i know that for sure. where shall i go? vietnam? states? liverpool, to watch everton? if vietnam, would the vietnam gang be interested in going again?



went to may's birthday last night, she was wearing a delectably luminescent pink dress. gave her david mitchell's cloud atlas. i promise that it is not as depressive as murakami (but still depressing, nonetheless). nearing the end of 2005, where the people of my year are soon all to be legally of age. saw some vietnam trip people that i had not seen for ages.

still, happy birthday, may.

a long bus trip home, citizen soldiers (stephen e. ambrose) in my hands, listening to budak pantai, going past some places of previous history: tampines, bedok reservoir, paya lebar, geylang, kallang. i sat on the bus thinking more than i should about the relationship between past, present, and future. the past: what could i have done differently? present: wtf am i doing with my life? future: is the vision of the future going to be realised?

tonight was ben, ros, eddy's birthday celebration. dinner at bugis crystal jade, dessert at liang seah rd/st, with a mini cake from breadtalk for each of them. wonderful outing. have not seen ros for like 2, 3 years. next outing that i will be organising will be next year. no more this year. murakami books are so cheap at kinokuniya now - 20 dollars each!

did maybe half of my ltb journal in school today. that's about all the productivity i could muster out of myself for today. i have to take a step back. i think i am simply just stressing myself out by keeping a list of to-do's. omfg. it's like an abyss just opened up below my feet without warning, like being shot from a thousand yards away in the back, like walking onto the street with no car in sight just to have a 5-tonner smash into you. like. it's too fast, and i cannot cope. i want to talk about it, but when i do i think about it even more, and for now, i want to avoid precisely that. but yes. i want to settle down already. and start thinking about the future.

never mind. new long term goals.
1. graduate from smu with a double degree in econs and social science or business, at least magna cum laude.
2. make my first million before i am 30.
3. complete at least two of the following:
a. finish a mba at either harvard, upenn, mit or stanford.
b. finish a political science / public policy / international relations degree from harvard, princeton, stanford or georgetown.
c. finish a law degree from harvard, stanford or yale.
d. further my economics education at mit, chicago, harvard or wherever paul krugman is teaching (currently princeton).

to complete options 1, 2 and at least two of the option 3s. in other words, i am aiming for academia. (aka biting off more than you can chew). phd, but i have no idea in what subject. aim high, they say. at least my parents are saying, 'go for it.'

'a man's past is not simply a dead history. it is a still quivering part of himself, bringing shudders and bitter flavours and the tinglings of a merited shame.'
george eliot



recess week. finally. in the past one month plus, life has changed so much, and yet so little. my insomniac ways have not changed, and sleep still does not come even at 3 am in the morning. so what if school starts at 0830, and it's a thursday, where comm101 is in the morning and mgmt001 is in the afternoon? my eyes cannot stay closed. and with just a little 30 minute nap in between i can stay awake for the whole day.

just looked through may's blog, found a little reference to haruki murakami. wahaha. so the book i gave her for her 19th birthday was not in vain. but isn't the fact that murakami was so unknown and yet so good just another reason i loved his writing? share the wealth, they say, share the wealth. 5 more years to his next book.

10 reasons to stay awake. i am getting carried away, thinking too far, too deep. this weekend will be one hell of a busy weekend. first may's birthday on saturday night, then ros, ben and eddy for sunday dinner.

recess week. econs project. comms letter. comms square. reading to do. csp project. final presentation. portfolio. relearning microeconomics. looks little but i just cannot believe i can complete all of this. i am working harder than i have ever. with this kind of effort i probably could have been president scholar. someone please hit me with a mallet before i actually believe that is true.

maths is okay. comms is okay, so far. ltb is soon ending. microeconomics worries the hell out of me. will i be able to get my double degree? later today - econs project meeting, ltb meeting. comms.

listening to björk's greatest hits. good album. surfing through wikipedia for fun. random places, random articles. rommel, bertrand russell, cal ripken, patton, commodore 64, sandy koufax, winston churchill. note to future ltb students: please pick a leader you can actually get a whole lot of info to link with the textbook, 'k.

'dance, you got to dance. as long as the music plays. you got to dance. don't even think why. start to think, your feet stop. your feet stop, we get stuck. we get stuck, you're stuck. we know you're tired, tired and scared. happens to everyone, okay? just don't let your feet stop. dancing is everything. dance in tip-top form. dance so it all keeps spinning...'
dance dance dance / haruki murakami




1. kuishinbo lunch (bosh, jonk, donkey, neo, denis)
2. dinner at marina square, changing appetites (calvin, jianming, yongrui, yijia, sookhim, lingshan)
3. after dinner entertainment at haven's bar (+ jason)

happy birthday to jason, sookhim and calvin. november's outing is settled. october's is a pain because the 3 october babies are not likely to come for their own birthday celebration, based on past attendance.



d. i now know that you are still alive, for i saw you about 5 hours before. there have been rumblings: that email, that radiohead postcard yelling for fresh blood that i could only suspect was from you. still, darling, our time is past, and yet i fear that i am still unable to believe that it is. and that is why i have not ever moved a step towards reconciliation as acquaintances, much less friends. the plans i make still have you in them - just another reason why i chose smu over nus. i looked into your eyes for a second, and the woodlark i loved once was no longer there - it was meth, the meth i could hardly understand. our worlds are too far apart, and i am now beginning to convince myself that you are lost forever to me - i presume that you have long believed so. but i am not going to risk letting my levees break by seeing you. chance encounters are still so very heart-breaking, even after 4 years.



'reality is created out of confusion and contradiction, and if you exclude those elements, you're no longer talking about reality. you might think that - by following language and a logic that appears consistent - you're able to exclude that aspect of reality, but it will always be lying in wait for you, ready to take its revenge.'
/ haruki murakami



a decent concert tonight - not distinctly outstanding, more like quietly outstanding. corrinne may played the crowd pretty well - in all, a concert definitely worth going for. the crowd was typically singaporean - appreciative and rather quiet. an enjoyable experience, period.



'it doesn't matter what form she takes - a living spirit, an illusion - but you have to see her, have to have her beside you. your brain is so full of her it's ready to burst, your body about to explode into pieces. still, no matter how much you want her to be here, no matter how long you wait, she never appears. all you hear is the faint rustle of wind outside, birds softly cooing in the night. you hold your breath, staring off into the gloom. you listen to the wind, trying to read something into it, straining to catch a hint of what it might mean. but all that surrounds you are different shades of darkness. finally, you give up, close your eyes and fall asleep.'
kafka on the shore
/ haruki murakami

kafka on the shore is done. despite all the negative comments about how murakami's work in english is diminished due to the literary and cultural differences/nuances lost in translation: translated, his work is already genius. just imagine if we were able to experience him at full force.



finished reading natsuo kirino's out 2 nights back. stunning book, very direct, very visceral. also finished terry prachett's going postal - nothing new there, his standards are still high. also managed to get my hands on haruki murakami kafka on the shore - a book that has been on my reading list for about 3 years. have to actually try not finish it in one go. recently found out that his next book, after dark, will only be released in 2010. twenty. ten. i may be dead by then.

today is chuanwen's 21st. he got a very nice pair of oakley sunglasses. had dinner with a small bunch of jc classmates earlier in celebration, and cut the cake in suntec kbox. am now wrecking my head as to how to plan the next outing, considering the glut of birthdays in the next couple of months.



smu it is. matriculated. wrote and sent the withdrawal letter to nus. have disrupted, the pink card is back in my possession. nothing much has happened since the last entry. this is my first week out of the saf - but i kind of miss the office already. preparing for uni is really troublesome, i suppose. clothes, bag. specs. need to get stationery next.

started playing nationstates. here, i present the democratic republic of muaji, ensconced in the region known as the gathering of desserts.

it's rach's 21st today. happy 21st, rachel.

have been working for my father. i suppose that's not entirely true - but it's not false either. but i am still bored - it would not be wrong to say that i am lacking direction. my compass is spinning wildly; it may be that i am back in the bermuda triangle. and the worst thing about having so much free time is the fact that thinking starts to happen more often. like how foolish we were, how wrong it was, how misguided our views were - the power of hindsight, darling, the power.

things go wrong for a reason, you know. i do miss it all, but i also realise that the factors and circumstances will never be removed sufficiently, much less entirely for 'us' to see the light of day. at least our friendship still exists, to an extent. jon thinks that my behaviour on this issue is irrational, considering the amount of time that has passed. yet that is precisely why i have grown tired of this struggle - and happily do not mind staying in stasis. but i guess i'll be honest. there's an underlying current of anger that's ripping through me at times that i cannot control - only able to leave it simmering inside. internal combustion. and all because i have no idea what i want, no idea what i do not want, and no idea how to go on about it.



anyway. the great university debate is still on. from smu 90 nus 10, it has now become 50-50. jon has basically decided on nus. i have no idea where i will end up, even with 2 weeks left to decide. except that it will probably be nus by default. and that is even with all the lack of positive comments from friends about nus.

rachel seems to have dropped into her old abyss; but with this distance i cannot help her much. factor in the lack of conversation, and things look much worse. add in the fact that she is naturally secretive, and things look a whole lot worse. i worry.

i feel that i am changing, changing in a way that if i were to be told a few years earlier, be left in a state of denial. if only things were different. yet i still feel so very attached to my ideals of yesterday - the very same destination that i have been wishing for since junior college. what is it? where is it? from whence has it came? i do not know. i cannot believe that i would actually accept it - i know that i accept it on others, but thought that it would never happen for myself. i am troubled, but i can only go with the flow.

we are all so very different from what we used to be, yet we all know that it is all nothing more than an undercurrent that has only just surfaced.



went for my interview at smu today, and i think i messed up both the interview and the essay. wrote about 'no omelettes can be made without cracking some eggs - expand', and i wrecked my senses thinking of what to write. in the end the essay was a messy, convoluted, ill-planned affair. the interviewers asked about the casino affair and i rambled about asian psyche, betting habits, mature societies and loads of things that did not make sense. but i did make one thing clear - smu is the choice. jon's decision to go there as well just made it a lot easier.



1730 at bugis became 1830 bugis. and class outing became pseudo peiyun birthday celebration. anyway. congratulations on reaching the 21st milestone, 'princess'. still find it hard to understand her, but she has not changed that much since leaving srjc.

and attendance was pretty good. this class is beginning to surprise me once again... but the regulars were there, and the regular absentees were not. same old. fish&co, followed by a session at parklane tcc. we all left at 2300 whereabouts.

the guys who have ord-ed are seeking work, and listening to calvin talk about his monetary woes (and jonathan as well) reminds me of the time when i was working at suntec integrated media. the work was fine, the pay was good, the life was okay, the colleagues brillant, but i just hated the 9-5 routine. it's the same in ns, actually. i have to break this mold - i doubt i could be happy otherwise.



went back to bendmeer and had lunch with mrs lo. time has really passed - 4 years plus. and i still find myself looking back wondering about the different choices i could have made - and i know this now - i would have done things, many things, differently, because it would have been right. or just simply better. there have been pluses and minuses, but on my book of accounts, this path is running a deficit. yet 'tis too late. what if? what would have? what could have? i've lost too much, and gained too little. my lack of growth is disturbing. i'm still waiting for the next step of my evolution. perhaps i should continue my path of apathy.



dinner at home. asked about 10-15 people, but was left with: calvin, jianming, kangwei, adam, yongrui, paul, zixiang, jon. enjoyed the cookies 'n cream cake from bakerzin. i'm still trying to get rid of the vodka calvin brought, because i don't like the taste of alochol, nor the smell of it. even if i am now legally able to vote, as well as enter screenings of ra movies. time flies, and i find myself careening on the edge, between wanting to take it all back or going with the flow.



the first entry this year. in chronological order...

dinner with jc classmates. outstanding attendance for once. seoul garden, washed down with an hour or two at this funny outdoor/indoor cafe at the outskirts of bugis. once again, played the role of outsider looking in more often than taking part.

met jianming at srjc around 0920. visited whatever teachers that we had left. pondered over whether to visit meridian as well, but i begged off in the end. were accosted by this chinese psychic asking to read our fortunes for a fee, but his analysis felt more like a cold reading.

the last week or so has been filled with questions, questions, questions. questions that i cannot answer, questions that i wish would just go away and questions that i just wish i could ignore. but this does not make any sense. does it? i am running against the flow.