happy halloween

just me and my shadow this year

things happen for a reason and all i needed was some time to see it, i've decided.
not going to be counting my chickens before they hatch but considering how things have been lately, i'm ecstatic about each tomorrow now. the hypochondriac in me is screaming bipolar but i'm putting it down to having my grad ball ticket in my hand and my dress being safely at the dressmaker's for a serious revamp of my awful handiwork =)

happy all hallow's eve =)


it's ok only when you say so

it's ok to bend the rules a bit and give me credit for the 8 weeks of medicine i attended. that's more than 350 hours of being at the hospital, nevermind the study time for the long case and other things like helping out my registrar prepare a grand rounds presentation. it's not ok for them to bend the rules a bit by letting me catch up 8 weeks worth of classes consisting of around 240 hours at the hospital over summer despite both course supervisors giving me the green light.

it's ok when the prof shows up late or complete forgets to turn up for a tutorial.. or makes the whole group of us traipse down to the university only to find out he got the date wrong. it's not ok for me to miss a lecture i've been to twice already despite the cursory "well, you don't need to go but i think it'd be good for you to as revision" line from the prof. seriously.. talk about choice.

it's ok for the Islam community here to pardon comments by one of their own comparing unveiled women to uncovered pieces of meat or proclaiming that scantily dressed women incited rape. supporters say the comments have been taken out of context. sure, that's a possibility and he might have possibly been quoting something for all we know. i just find it hypocrytical that it's ok for one of their own to make comments like that inciting such huge public outcry but it wasn't ok for the Pope to make certain comments in his speech a few months back despite the explanation that the Pope was quoting someone who died centuries ago. Both comments when taken out of context could be construed as atrocious yet one can be quickly pardoned and even condoned whilst the other had to be dragged through mud and gunk. nice going. story snippet here

don't get me wrong - this isn't me being biased against the Islam community. it's merely me unable to shut up about the inconsistency i see in the situation. like i've said before, one of my biggest pet peeves would be hypocrites and people who break promises. should be be one of those, beware the evil death stare of amy!


as a tag on, something else that i'm unable to shut up about. yes, it bugged me that much. enough to blab about it so here goes..

it's ok for people to hurl insults mostly based on superficial observations and extrapolated conjectures at one when the only contact has been several photographs. i'm referring to a certain someone from my alma mater (*sigh* how utterly embarrasing) ruffling many a feather in the singaporean blogosphere with her comments as reproduced by the link. the original blog's apparently been ceased and in true scandal protocol, key links, urls and photos have gone missing. yes, i realize that some of the responses at the forum may be tongue-in-cheek and banter spawned for varoius reasons but i see it as more of a "pot calling the kettle black" in this situation. i don't agree with the opinions originally expressed by the 18 year old, but i don't see how passing judgement based on her photos are any better than her passing judgement on the rest of the "non-elitist" citizens. sure, it might not be of the same severity but runs a parallel course. i'm sure it wouldn't be ok if any one of the commentators was in her position and others slung 'em through mud and grime. i'm sure it wouldn't be ok if any one of the commentators got a similar backlash from the girl herself, commenting on a past photo she happened to dig up. i can't speak for the rest of you when i say that i'm sure it wouldn't be ok, but merely what i'd imagine feeling like in such a situation.

it's ok only when you say so, huh?

really. everyone has opinions. some are right, some are wrong. some agree with your own, others don't. sure, it's ok to disagree but it' all goes badly inane when people take it to a personal level and start with personal insults. kinda reminds me of the tibian forums (i.e. "you have such a high-levelled character, you're such a power abuser, you have no life, you must be some ugly pimply nerd with no friends that sit at home 24/7 playing tibs and can't get laid") or politics.. or real life. *sigh* gimme back my fairytales =(


a tad too close to home

What have I done... *sigh* In a trademark amy blunder where words come tumbling out of my mouth without any semblence of preparation, I let slip about my bento craze to my mom yesterday. Of course, it's not called a blunder for nothing.. when these things happen, they precipitate a cascade of events that usually involve half-truths and white lies. grrr. I hate when I put myself into these situations.

Preempting the squirmish thought of fielding several questions from her, including "shouldn't you be studying?" ...I had to backtrack and tell her I was inspired by cookingcute.com. That opened up another can of potential worms of course... "Wow, how'd you come across this website? I can never find anything online, I don't know how to search"

Told her I just randomly stumbled across it. That's true! Upon further questioning out of sheer innocent curiosity on her part, I had to cross my fingers behind my back as I told her I found a cute picture searching for other things on Google Images and one click led to another... What really happened was that I stumbled onto the site via someone's LiveJournal blog. Telling her that would've been too close to home and let loose questions like "so who's blog was this? how did you know them? WHAT? online friend? what are you doing talking to people online?" which could spin off in several directions. It could lead down the "don't talk to strangers, I thought u were smarter than that" path or veer into the "no wonder you aren't focused on your work.. you spend all your time a-wasting online!" or goodness gracious, heaven forbid it go down the "who do you talk to online? do you have a boyfriend? who is the guy??" path. She hasn't been down that path for a while... And should it go down the "so why were you at the blog in the first place? do you have a blog?" ...well, I'd be screwed for not being able to say no without giving the fib away.

Despite seeing my mom more and more as a friend over the years, despite being able to chat about a hella lot more things and vice versa (gawd, rue the day she mentioned in passing what went on in the bedroom with my dad... or lack of. dear gawd. too. much. info. really. now you all can be as traumatized as me! muahaha! teehee)... despite breaking down some of those walls accumulated from yesteryear, some boundaries are still needed. When an old friend of mine cautioned me about not revealing their facebook account to the parents, it made me grin in realization that some things really don't change =)


nostalgically pink

proof that i succumb to fads and openly admit it once in a while...

and in other news ~ a reminder from twice the rice that it's breast cancer awareness month. doesn't hurt that i used to be a pink freak and of late, that craze has been rekindled... anyway, pink ribbon day is coming up on Oct 23rd this year so even if you're not one to donate and such, please at least send happy thoughts and wishes towards those who need it =) why the fuss, you ask?

*patpats fluffy pink cushion on the floor* time for a bit of sharing...

my mom self-diagnosed a lump that turned out to be ductal carcinoma in situ after biopsy results came back. i still get really mad at the fact that she went ahead with an unilateral mastectomy and now have it as a constant reminder of what she's overcome nearly 15 years later. for her sake, i wish that i had a bigger say in the whole process at the time and to be told of what was happening.

all i remember was my mom sitting me down to say she had cancer and that she would be having an operation. i remember her telling me she'd be losing her hair soon because that's how it'll be treated, but that it's ok. i remember being assured that there was nothing to be scared about, that they had caught it early and everything was going to be fine. i remember how she made it into a happy activity to try on different wigs and bandanas in preparation for her chemotherapy. i remember how odd it was to not be picked up from school by her. i remember how empty the house felt coming home afterschool the day of her surgery. i remember how i tiptoed around her single room @ the hospital, poked at her tray of food and felt like a total stranger in someone else's house staring at the stranger smiling weakly on bed with tubes and things running out of her. i remember wanting to go home =(

my aunt got diagnosed with carcinoma in situ herself nearly a year ago and underwent a mastectomy along with the usual chemotherapy. no, there's no BRCA1 gene present ~ both were just random quirks of nature. talking to her highlighted an important issue that i seldom come across in all the campaigns and organizational websites ~ do you tell one's kids and if so, how do you do it?

my aunt had huge difficulties deciding whether to tell my cousins. she was worried that they would be too young to understand. one was 11, the other 10. she was worried that they would get worried and scared. she was worried about not telling them ~ it wasn't like they wouldn't figure out something was up with all the frequent visits to the doctor and the sudden disappearance of their mom for a few days. she turned to me asking how i took the news when my mom told me way back when, of what was running through my head at the time and whether i wished that it was handled any differently.

i think that the worst thing one can do as a parent is to cover up something that impacts such greatly on your life. it's easy to think "aw, they're just kids" and want them to have a happy carefree childhood etc, but that's an insult on so many different levels. it's as if you're dismissing them based on age, as if they didn't matter enough to be included in something important to you. you may not think this way and i know that's the last thing you'd want your kids to think, but digging into my own memories... i look back with the goodness of hindsight and feel relieved that my mom told me upfront. i remember feeling honored? proud? not quite the word.. it's that feeling being treated as an "adult"at the time, to know (or at least feel) that my parents trusted me enough to divulge such information to that was so obviously important to them. i didn't fully grasp everything but the serious mood definitely made me realize this was a big thing and that i should be pulling my weight around to help out because my mom was sick.

kids understand more than you think, in ways you wouldn't expect... especially the quiet ones *wink* admittedly, a lot of preparation should be done by both parents for their own sakes in terms of reading up on the particular condition and mental preparations too before sitting down with the kids. it doesn't really help to burst into tears in front of them after suddenly having the news sink in for yourself halfway through explaining to the kids what it is you have.

some people are more fortunate than others - they might have had an early diagnosis, successful treatment, minimal side effects and such, but even amongst the survivors of breast cancer.. and any other cancer for that matter will be personal stories that someone called i can say "i remember."


hungry hungry hippos

hungry hungry hippos indeed. that's what the past two weeks have been like... a mad frenzy of activity propelling me towards a vague goal, one that gets forgotten quite easily in the flurry of events.

lotsa things still left to do. wouldn't be surprised if some of them hungry hungry hippos missed out chomping down on many a lost plastic ball in the midst of it all. can't wait for the end of the year, for that will mean many a happy thing! apartment hunting and the clean new canvas ready for decoration and color schemes, celebration week (corny as the name may be) with graduation ball invites, freedom from faculty tightwads...

in the meantime, will leave you with another type of happy ~ it's how i've been destressing of late! makes for some interesting lunch conversations up in m'land on many a slow afternoon =)

is it safe to come out?beep beep!happy beep beep!nemo's cousin?


free hugs for all

i'm glad i got distracted, that i got sick of looking up volumes and volumes of journals.
i'm glad i sought out the latest incarnation of elmo or else i wouldn't have stumbled onto the free hugs campaign.

not one to be a youtube junkie, let alone post videos and slow down loading times unable to embed in blogger, linking instead... this is an exeption that i really wanted to share with whoever happens to stumble in here. always been one that's drawn to the bittersweet, this free hugs campaign tugged at the heartstrings. yes, maybe it's a tad crazy to hug some stranger with a nutty history or one that might have um... head lice! i agree that we all have different levels of personal boundaries but that being said, i think it's a tad sad that everyone's treated with caution at first sight until proven otherwise safe. what happened to the old kampung days, those days of playing amongst the wheat fields and random stops at various neighbors' places?

seeing pitt street mall brought back a scene i came across a few weeks back. parents were in town, was trudging up and down the shopping areas and came across this little asian boy of about 8, standing in the middle of pitt street mall with a light mist of rain soaking him slowly. he was oblivious to the crowd and to the rain, diligently playing his violin with a gentle sway. a container for money was on the ground just next to him.

first thing that sprung into my head was "where are his parents?" followed by "what kind of parents let their kid do this?!" a lot of split second assumptions were made and had i known the full story, i might have not been so horrified. first impulse i had was to give the kid a huge hug and ask him why he was playing alone in the middle of the crowded shopping strip. the free hug campaign brought back that feeling...

anyway, happy mooncake day ~ huggs to yuh and yuh and yuh (a la the sound of music) =) hope these huggs find you well ~


another episode in the quarter-life saga

optimistically assuming that i'll be living til a hundred, this year of twenty-five has definitely been one full of mini quarter-life crises. excuse the pessimist in me in saying that i can't wait for the snowballing of them all into one huge avalanche just before i turn twenty-six.

came across the timeframe of a pediatric surgeon's training today that really pushed all the panic buttons in my head, even the ones i didn't know existed. the guy graduated from med school in 1987 and he just became a consultant two years ago. 1987!! i was in first grade in 1987. his journey had been relatively hitch-free and it still took him nearly 20 years to reach the beginning of his career. the world revolves around me of course.. so naturally, i transcribed his timeframe onto my own. i'll be just beginning my career in about 20 years' time, give and take a few years. should be about right if you throw in plans for a future family with a kid or two and allow some time off for burnout and sabbaticals. so, twenty years. shite.

according to my mom, im twenty-five by western calendars. means im twenty-six by the traditional chinese lunar calendar, but then there's new years' that passed and that adds another year too. she concludes that i'm twenty-seven which approximates to thirty so therefore, i'm about thirty this year. my reaction to her zany brand of logic is another tale in itself... so anyway, if we go by her logic that i'm about thirty years old.. then i'll be a consultant at fifty. 0.0 fifty!

some may argue that fifty year olds aren't old at all but then i think of my parents' age. they've eased into their fifties with a grown up kid to show for it. transcribed in my timeline, does this mean i'm going to have to wait til my future kid's out in the workforce to fully qualify myself? goodness. twenty more years! sigh.

things seem to be better, mood's less dreary with a hint of extra pressure. m-land definitely lived up to my expectations of being my runaway hideout. that being said, i think this sense of calm is partly due to a combination of being in the state of denial and being swamped with work. not a bad thing =)