Sunday, November 05, 2017

流泪到天亮

又来了。又是这种逼死人不偿命的歌曲,又是那种把所有情感直接唱近你心坎里,一针见血的口气。



大家都说这是继“我不难过”,“我怀念的”后的“我” 系列第三部曲,但我并不认同。相较前两首的激情澎湃,这首相比之下更显无奈与平静。前奏一下就已经预告了整首歌曲的曲风,比较惊艳的是编曲竟然也一气呵成,并没有一般情歌在后段的歇斯底里,反而选择了延续开场的娓娓道来,而且你姿也越唱越凄美与绝望,真的听了好似被逼的就快窒息一样。好喜欢这样的颓废,在我心里也只有她的歌声可以带得出来这份恰到好处的情感。

作为你姿的铁粉,这样类似的曲风只能追溯到前一张专辑克卜勒比较冷门的非主打,“错觉”。这首歌比较下曲风比较高冷,没“我很愉快”那般抓耳,但营造的意境是不谋而合的。刚好3年前我也是听着这首歌帮我度过了好朋友的离去。我非常不认同逃避悲伤并不正视它的做法,因为它终究会追上你,是逃不掉的。与其如此,不如直接面对,痛痛快快干干脆脆的病一场。抒发完了,沮丧过了,才能正式的放下。所以这样的歌,我觉得是很必须的。

歌名与歌词整个真的是不搭,但我又好爱这样的对比。那种强颜欢笑,逼迫自己愉快至窒息的疯狂,几乎以为可以把悲伤都隔离。看似越平静越揪心,反而不适合现在大行其道的呐喊式炫技唱腔。

这女人我追了17年,真是我生命其中一个最长也最稳固的感情了。

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Mong is Married

Hey you

The unimaginable and unthinkable finally happened - Mong is married.

Actually that first statement is not entirely true. Mong has always been a planner - he does not partake in activities that do not serve some kind of purpose and have some meaning to him. As Xiu recounted that decade old 'controversy' with Mong and Bating's relationship, I thought of this as well. Mong plans his life, and plans it damn well if you ask me.

That is true for today's wedding too, everything went off without a hitch. Even as we were half-expecting some off-tangent moments from the true original weirdo of 30/05, nothing happened.

Still, I got to congratulate this old friend of mine. I do see him as a great friend, even an older brother, who has always been wise beyond his years. His thinking, definitely ahead of his physical age. If we were in need of some advice, or just talk to someone about anything crappy or serious, he somehow fulfills both the roles. What a far cry from my first impression of an unruly, violent ah beng back in school.

Weddings are ideal events for retrospection. The man himself noted in his speech how far he has come along as well, regardless if it's the physical or social changes, we are all somewhat different from our younger selves now, for better or worse.

Funniest point came towards the end, when we huddled around, one of the last few tables to leave, pilfering the few bottles of half-drank wine from the tables at the side. As the drunkards began to show themselves, Mong joined and got shoved a glass of red wine. He with his usual awkward expression, softly lamented that he would itch if he drinks. But that too got drowned out by the boisterous crowd of drunkards.

May you have a blissful marriage, roomie.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

ST2 - All Over Again

Hey you

If July was just a dip in the water for me back into the industry, then September completes the full-fledged personal comeback into the field, culminating in the exam today. In many ways, the actuarial career started with exams-based education back in University. When people were running around doing presentations, making business cases, attending networking events and socialising, the actuarial students were busy attending tutorials and doing assignments, pretty much a throwback to junior college days. And that has been pretty much the same for inspiring actuaries post-university as well.

Now I am definitely not an aspiring actuary, but now I see myself more as a completionist. I am not going to leave this hanging as long as I have not successfully qualified. Will treat this as a personal target, on top of the luring monetary incentives that come with it.

However nice it sounds, there is a reason not many people wants to be in the field. The work can be boring, the exams are especially difficult. Now I got a firsthand experience of it (again), after going two years prior without any studying, and the rust shows. I struggle to memorise bookwork and apply concepts, and my brains are just not as sharp as before. However, I hope that the additional experience and accumulated wisdom would offset that impact and be my lucky charms. Afterall, I stumbled at this paper previously just before I left.

Typing this as I am preparing to make the journey back far West in camp. Currently on reservist and this year especially I got a distinct recollection and nostalgia for those active days. Probably cause there is no outfield exercises and I got to spend more time in bunk, probably the guitar and probably the people (or lack of).

- Domon

Monday, September 18, 2017

Topicless X^10 I

Hey you

Trying to clear my mind a bit. Time is running out yet I have been procrastinating.

The pro and direct con of an Actuarial career is the exams. They are a nuisance, yet rewarding. I do think this time round I have a better grasp of the concepts compared to last time round, yet I do feel my age. It wrecks havoc to my memory, which was severely deficient to begin with. The snowballing effect builds up to a summit of negativity as I try and fail in memorising bookwork and interpreting questions correctly. I find myself going through the motions, passively reading pages of model solutions yet absorbing nothing.

This all feels too familiar.

Yet I know if my mind is not working, I just cannot fix it. I chose to let it be and just relax for tonight. Although at the back of my mind I know I cannot afford this luxury, yet I have no choice.

I shall sleep earlier and attempt to wake early tomorrow and see what I can do.

I do feel challenged, at work, and also academically now. I feel I am learning and progressing, no doubt much slower and definitely laps behind compared to my peers, who have not sought after 'greener' pastures like myself, and stuck to their guns. Perhaps I could've done that, but I regret nothing.

Between notes and tutorials, memory work and intense brainstorming for solutions, my mind wandered to idealistic lands - especially befitting someone who is nearing 30. Gosh... even typing this now feels foreign. Why is it already upon me? This imminent milestone is kindly celebrated by the local immigration authorities where we have to update our identity cards with the latest self-portrait. I'd imagine that is necessary for most. It all feels a bit ceremonious, as though the fact of reaching that milestone alone is not enough.

30 with nothing to show for, that was the starting point where my imagination took flight. Many wacky and superfluous plans conceptualised and took off on their own, in the safe space of my mind. Many of those were initially conjured in my early twenties, which I still feel is sort of a 'lost' period for me. And I lament the missed opportunities, and I have the very bad habit of blaming everything else for my aspirations not materialising. Very unbecoming.

As I watch as my peers settle down with families, kids, attaining good social status in society, seemingly checking off all boxes in the proverbial 'successful life' checklist, I am left to wonder what do I want in life. I am not so extreme as Nusiax, and certainly buried that kind of idealism in my early twenties. But you know what they say, 30s is the best period of a man's life, so let the guy dream a bit. Who knows, maybe something might happen?

- Domon

Friday, July 21, 2017

On Career

Hey you

I have gone through quite a personal journey with regards to my overall feelings for my career. Growing up in a pragmatic society, studying was for the sole purpose of getting a good job - it was kind of a foreshadowing of what makes up my perspective towards life and career. Of course it got partially derailed 2 years ago when I abruptly switched career tracks. But with all that said and done, 2 years later and I am back to square one.

I can confidently say, the idealistic, young and naive me is dead. Aspirations dreams and goals are terms better used by university freshmen or even starry-eyed fresh graduates. Well I do have them, but I have reached the stage of my life where I almost certainly have missed the crucial juncture of chasing for those dreams. Circumstances played a part too, I had a perfect opportunity 3 years ago, but I did not have the means to do so. I do however, believe that everything happened for a reason, so no regrets and not going to waste too much energy and time worrying about those.

Currently though, I am in an incredible dilemma re career. Or probably, I should just call it a job. Should I commit myself 100% and do my best, or just do the essential and breeze through work? I no longer have the fervent drive years ago to succeed - as said, I think I have already missed the boat. Neither do I want to just be a leech to my coworkers and team, I would and should contribute, at least up to what is expected of me. More than that? I am not so sure.

In some ways it is a sad realisation of how far I have progressed to the jaded stage now, to when I was motivated and optimistic. Guess life has a way to pull everyone back on Earth, just give it some time.

- Domon

Monday, June 26, 2017

On to the Next

Hey you

Probably a good time to share my thoughts on the past 1.5 years of working in the healthcare industry. Most of my peers, those not in the industry, may well be like myself back then, with nary a clue what constitutes our public healthcare system. We know the GPs are the expensive and bobian option, some of whom may be our family doctors since young. And the affordable, true-blue Singaporean option is the queue-till-you-die Polyclinic option. I remember I was confused when I polyclinic-hopped between Sengkang and Hougang (both rather near to my place) and realised that they each issue different appointment cards, complete with different logos and colour schemes.

Local healthcare all comes under the purview of the Ministry, and as such, although I was not considered a civil servant, we are quasi-civil servant, or more appropriately classified as public sector workers. Our salary, admittedly, flows from taxpayers' money. Therefore, the Ministry constitutes the big boss and very much dictates most, if not our very move, with them holding on to the funds (and by that extension, really the Ministry of Finance). That kind of dynamic comes into play so often in my time here, and therein lies the politics and notorious restrictions and red-tape which frequently hamper real efforts in effecting change.

Nonetheless, I have learnt quite a bit. I did take the opportunity to express myself, and speak out more, much at the encouragement of my manager. Presentations, slides, minutes, reports, all those skills picked up in University but were since left dusted at one side, finally got to see the light of day. I was so lost with doing those but thankfully things moved along swimmingly after.

Still, operations is another thing altogether, and I can admit it is not my favourite part of the job. Having to make 'cold' calls to setup meetings, solve problems or even just to expect a earful, these are just not up my alley. It was fun giving it a go, but definitely nothing more for me.

This was also the first workplace where I was almost living my true self. Granted I did not pretend to be someone I wasn't all along, but I definitely had reservations. Although it wasn't wholly voluntary this time round, I am glad I got to forge a deeper relationship with these new friends.

Deeply grateful for this experience, and honestly, no regrets!

- Domon


Thursday, May 18, 2017

STM

Hey you

Huangmu makes sure that she reminds me constantly that I have STM - a term coined in JC to denote that I have Short Term Memory. This happens quite frequently as I do suffer from temporary amnesia of some kind - yea I know how paradoxical it sounds.

I tend to forget things - big or small, immediate or distant, serious or trivial.

But what I cannot seem to figure out is how my memory seem to adhere to a random protocol in its construct - I seem to recall the most random and unimportant of things, while neglecting bits that I probably should remember better. I guess the brains do some resource allocation subconsciously on its own when dealing with things to store in memory - some assigned a much higher priority than others. I do notice that I make special attempt to remember some things which i know are important, but some just creep up seemingly from nowhere - and unimportant to speak of!

This came up when I met up with ex-colleagues, I remember the name of my ex-colleague, whom I only got to know for a short 2 months before I left there. I remember my ex-colleague's kopi order - iced yuan yang teh gao, most random and very very unworthy of remembering.

There may be many more examples over the years which I cannot recall now, but it does bring a chuckle when I realised I can remember these effortlessly.

- Domon