Search This Blog

Monday, September 22, 2014

To Taylor's University, and Taylorians

The parking problem among Taylor's campuses have been prevalent for the past few years due to the increasing demand for quality education that is significantly overpriced. Parents are willing to pay for a better chance for their children.


However, things are getting out of hand. A few weeks ago, one of lecturers tried to justify that the problem was caused by an unexpected increase in enrollment to the university, and the management had not anticipated so many students to be part of Taylor's.


I think the actual phrase was:

We have reached our goal for 2018 four years earlier.

If they think that this is enough of a logical explanation to pacify us - think again.


The overpopulation here is just ridiculous - freshmen are starting to take refuge as stairwells as there aren't sufficient tables and chairs around campus to accommodate them. Empty classrooms are also becoming sparser given the increase in students.


As if the overpopulation in campus is not bad enough, the parking system is constantly being cut - there used to be three floors open in the basement for parking, but now they've sliced it up to two floors, I think, for make space for the parking reservations.


Arriving on campus at 8am in 2011 could still score you a space just a row or two beyond the first tower - now it's half way to the last tower.


I would think that building a state-of-the-art campus would have taken into account the growth of students within the institution, regardless of the turnover rate. And even if the growth of population wasn't expected so soon, shouldn't the facilities be built for the next one or two decades?


Also, with all the money being channeled into Taylor's by eager advertisers and parents, they spend it all on aesthetic upgrades - new signage stickers for different departments. While there are more elements that meets the eye when running an educational institution, I think bigger issues should be tackled first.


And to the students themselves, especially the self-entitled freshmen with their nose in the air - lose the attitude. You don't own the place, and neither do we - we share this place, as well as the parking.


It's not a secret that we're facing a really bad shortage of parking spaces, to the point where people would park on slopes, and any parking - regardless of how far - is a miracle in itself. So do everyone and yourself a favor - don't park like an asshole. Your car is precious to you, so is everyone else's car to them.


Leaving enough space for half a car is being a douchebag, and doesn't help the congestion. And no, driving with a probational license doesn't give you the god-given right to park like an inconsiderate dickhead.


It's not about being egoistic, complaining about one of the most renowned campuses in the country, but this is a real issue we're facing here, and since we're all in this together, show some consideration as a fellow Taylorian.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Suck it up, bitch

As time goes by, we are forced to accept that the world isn't as polished as it is in the movies. Every video clip and movie published is edited, with a lot of parts cut out. Every vlog that you see on YouTube is just a very short snippet of the vlogger's life, and should not be used as a reference to real life.


We only hear dialogues about how people juggle a few jobs at a time, or juggle classes with homework and a tedious job. It's never really portrayed in the open how stressful and sometimes depressing it is to be in the real world.


Even one of the more gritty waitresses in movies get whisked away to a life of luxury, or other aspects of their lives are given the main focus.


Which is why many of us, especially those who have never really been faced with ultimatums, have unrealistic expectations about tertiary education and getting full time jobs.


Semester after semester, we're faced with almost impossible amounts of assignments, but most of these are workable as long as you manage your time well. Each assignment requires a significant amount of research and critical thinking, so if you manage your time accordingly, things will be a breeze.


The tripping stone comes on, however, when a lecturer assumes that since we all are in our last year of university, that he/she can bestow unrealistic expectations upon us. In other words, they think that they're module and assignments are the only ones we have for the entire semester.


Having been through an internship with a company who does their own events, and with one executive handling pretty much everything within that event, I've pretty much come to the realization that these shitty conditions were being put through are real life representatives of what we're up against when we enter the workforce.


Your superiors and bosses will expect you to handle your own time and get thing done, no matter how unreasonable the tasks are. They don't care about how tired you are or how many other deadlines you have to meet - they want it done, and they want it done fast. And they expect you to do all of this with a smile on your face.


As much as I'd like to go on complaining about shitty lecturers who don't teach what they should, we've all to face the fact that we're on our own - no one owes us anything in the real world (of course, unless you're paying about MYR3,000 per semester to be actually taught stuff).


From primary school to high school, my mum focused on having us study and understand the syllabus, rather than have us just wait for the lazy-ass teacher to get off their lazy asses and actually teach and not just hand out notes.


Last semester, we had to come up with our own event, while being led by someone who was always M.I.A and did things on her own without notifying the entire committee. It was hard work for those who actually had to get the event up and running, while cleaning up the messes that came up.


Fortunately, we had help - the event was a partial success, our event objectives not met, and a handful of mishaps during the event day itself that led us stranded with a room full of leftover freebies by sponsors.


We were our own clients, we could change the gameplay whenever we wanted to. However, now we're faced up with an actual client - a potential mogul in the entertainment industry, having their hands in several cookie jars.


The challenge is real, and as much as I want to roll around the floor screaming for them to stop, I can't - this is probably gonna be what we're gonna be up against for the rest of our lives.


It's at this point that I ask myself why I chose to major in Event Management in the first place. On the surface, it seems like a breeze - just gather up a bunch of people to meet the client's needs within the budget, and you get to strut around admiring the masterpiece that you put together.


Job-hunting is something entirely different altogether - we were provided with a list of companies to approach for our internship, but after that we're on our own. Sure, I could go back to that company since I pretty much already know the system, but I thought I'd try my hand at a writing/journalist job...

Saturday, September 20, 2014

It's more than just cuddles and kisses

Back in 2008, practically the only channel I was on happened to be hitz.tv, which is the Malaysian equivalent of MTV, and at that time it featured different genres of music during different times, and had an SMS chat service which I spent a lot of money on (50sen per text).


Occasionally, there would be these few tracks which weren't as popular as the others, and these were the ones I usually clung to (that thing about trying not to be a cardboard cutout and all that shit). And among these was Daniel Bedingfield's If You're Not the One.


I seemed to be the only one who knew about the existence of this song, and among all the J-rock that filled my MP4 player, I turned to this particular track. The lyrics were meaningful, and the song itself was relaxing, especially after so much rock and metal music.


That period of time was short-lived, as other tracks and genres replaced it - Shayne Ward, more J-rock and metal, K-pop, C-pop, American pop.


Fast forward to just a few months ago, I realized my boyfriend loved this song too, and it kinda became "our song".


None of my previous relationships had dedicated songs, like one in particular that brought us even closer together. I shared the same Japanese music taste with one, and the other one opened my eyes to the world of techno and hardstyle.


This one... was like a spark.


Like it was destined that we would meet, and share something so strong.


There was also a sign that was given to me a few years ago, in the form of a really strange dream. All my dreams are never normal (which kind of reflects my logic in general), but this one really scared me but made me happy at the same time.


I had this dream of being in the bathroom in his house, and I remembered feeling a really close connection between me and the other male figure in the dream (I seldom see faces of strangers in dreams). And when it happened in real life, it freaked the fuck out of me. Every reaction I had, every decision I made to try to break the deja vu chain ended up making the whole part of the dream reenacted, from me shifting my focus from the floor to the door, up to his reaction to my reactions.


Things weren't great at first. I wouldn't delve deep into the details, but things slowly got better. Our arguments were sparse, but intensely fierce when they happened. Confrontations, drama because of third-party opinions... It's safe to say we've been through a lot (for a couple our age).


However, he's been the most amazing gift that was bestowed upon me.


LITERALLY.


(Perhaps excluding my car, but that was thanks to dad).


Of all the other girls that fit his prior expectations of the perfect girlfriend, he chose me - almost the complete opposite, to be honest... Flabby curves, the vocabulary of a sailor, and a liking for cigarettes and alcohol, and almost absolutely no regard for many things. I wasn't the demure, quiet girl who never talked back (neither am I now, actually), and I end up doing a lot of stupid things due to the lack of logical thinking and general klutziness.


But somehow, through all the obstacles we've been through, we end up appreciating each other more.


He is the first one to ask me to be his girlfriend without the aid of a messaging app.


He is the first one who brought be out for a trip that wasn't to just a mall.


He is the first to bring me home without having to have me sneak in and out of the house and hide from his family.


He is the first to snap and flip the shit out the moment I started to berate my body image.


He is the first to call me his precious gem, and the first to make me face my fears.


He is the first to give me a complete, 100% sense of security.


He is the first one to buy me a bouquet of flowers complete with white roses and a filling of mimosa.


He is the one who never let's me call myself fat if I don't want to exercise and do something about my weight.


He is the one who spends more than he has just to give me irreplaceable memories and experiences.


And the only one who pays more attention to me than I do to myself.


Most of the time, it was the difference in expectations that fucked up my other relationships. I was willing to give 100% of my attention, and I expected the same. Unfortunately, not all people are as clingy as me.


In other words, he's the guy I've always fantasized about - sweet, sensitive, manly, and loves me pretty much more than anything. Oh, yeah, and the only one who would slime me back when I slime him (a.k.a lick him from jaw to forehead). As well as the only one who would actively make me face my inner demons, and finally help me come to terms with my warped body image.


Just the other day, we were just sitting around spending time together, when he started to play some songs on Youtube and we ended up singing along with them.


Then it hit me like a truck - at the start of the relationship, I was less than a girlfriend, because I was still poring over some douches who let me down. I even went as far as to tell him that I was just "trying him out". And crying over ex-flings with the only guy who confessed to you face-to-face isn't being too much of a sensitive girlfriend - it's being a bitch.


And the arguments were the turning points for me - did I want to win the argument, or did I want to keep the man of my dreams? I find that I fail as a girlfriend for not completely understanding my own future husband, but it's better for the relationship that I finally know his standpoint on different topics.


And what hit me like a truck was that even when I've done so many shitty things to him, he still wants me. And while talk about marriage is commonplace, he's the only one who still talks with me about our future together in detail (the last and only other one merely said that I'd be his wife and last girlfriend, and we know how that went).


And there, everyone, is when I started crying like a bitch. Never in my life that I thought that any of my dreams would come true, in the form of the near-perfect boyfriend/future husband, who cherishes me more than I deserve to be. The only guy who strives for me to become a better version of myself, and strives to give me everything he can.


It might be nothing to some, and even normal for others, but given all my relationship failures, I'd already given up hope on relationships as a whole, which is why it's all the more precious.


Fights, arguments, clashes in opinion will happen - very seldom do two people have the exact same personalities and opinions, but I know where my priorities are now. I can lose the argument, and possibly feel a little bit frustrated after that, but a short moment of frustration before a moment of reconciliation is peanuts compared to losing him completely.


My mum gave me this golden nugget of advice when I broke up in 2011, and told me the story of how she and my dad actually got married. In essence, what she told me was que sera, sera, and if it's destined that they are for you, they will come back to you even if they leave.


I think even if destiny hadn't written for him to be a part of my life, he forced his place there by doing so many things for me. From being there for me since the day I met him, to the one who would just spend time with me forehead to forehead, hands intertwined, soaking up the fact that I'm the luckiest girl on earth to have someone so unique, and so beautiful.


There's still a lot we have to work through, such as my insistence to still correct his English sometimes, and his insistence that I let him buy me gifts.


But other than that, I dream to see him chasing kids around, and somehow I can see him with a sleeping baby on his lap while playing DotA 2. Then having dinner together, falling asleep together, waking up beside each other...


Most of my family keeps telling me I could do better... The thing is, he's already everything I could ever ask for in a partner, so there is no "better". And rest assured that he'll be a really big part of me for a really, really long time.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Life without my phone

This is the perfect example of modern technology ruining lives. LOL


Just recently, my Galaxy Note crashed due to software problems. According to my SO, it's because of an overload of third-party content, i.e. I've been downloading too much stuff that aren't apps. This happened the day after I found out that I could play Clash of Clans using campus Wi-Fi.


The only solution was to reset it to factory settings, but I have a ton of photos and videos in there from vacations and trips that I didn't get to transfer out yet, so I passed the device to someone who could help me attempt to extract the data.


So naturally, I'm without my usual phone. Am currently using a Galaxy Ace (loyal Samsung user kthxbye) which only has WhatsApp, Between, and Facebook Messenger.


It is this point in life that I realize how much my phone is a central to my day-to-day activities.


In other words, my phone used to be my social media machine, and the retainer of my sanity.


While it's a bit refreshing that I'm not tied down with obsessing over how many likes my Instagram posts are getting, it gets a little difficult when I actually wanna do stuff.


I'm so used to the size of my Note that using the Ace is physical and OCD torture. The entire Ace device is the equivalent to less than the screen of the Note. Texting is pretty much hell.


Lesson learned: ALWAYS back up your data.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Of metaphorical swamps and bad decisions

The first thing most people tell me when I recount to them my experiences in life is that I'm stupid. Well, thank you very much for implying that I'm so stupid that I didn't even realize that I made stupid decisions in my life before.


As per beauty, stupidity is also subject to individual interpretation - different people may perceive different things as beautiful, or in this case - stupid.


I, for one, find spending a ton of money on a dye job that last for a total of 3 days stupid. Others may find that my tattoos were stupid decisions. Are we on the same page now? Good.


Unfortunately for me, most of my decisions are universally perceived as completely, bat-shit insane stupid, if that's a good enough description for the level of daftness that we're dealing with here. And for some of them, I agree heavy-wholeheartedly.


For the most part, my decisions are mostly based on my gut feeling, and from what I observed from other similar situations. The hormones that control my gut feeling are usually estrogen, testosterone, and above all - adrenaline.


In most cases, once I have an adrenaline rush, you can pretty much trust me to throw most of my logical thinking out the window and perhaps into outer space in a droid or something for a couple of hours.


There are also cases where I actually put in a few months worth of thought and research before making a decision, and when I decide to do it, I get reprimanded for doing things without contemplation. My dear, should I vocalize my thought process and decision-making process, or whatever mechanics that go through my jumble of a brain, all you will here is a massive ball of unintelligible gibberish, seasoned with a few short sentences here and there.


While I defend my sanity, I also must own up for it - I've never been the brightest person alive. I'm used to letting other people take the reins; and a light dash of social anxiety doesn't make me adventurous enough to wander out on my own (even if I had that freedom) to take on spontaneous decision-making that is deemed smart.


There are a million things that I wished I decided against.


I wished I were more active in sports when I was a kid (I loved playgrounds and theme parks, though).


I wished I was more daring to make the first move on first days of school.


I wished I never really just slacked during most of my primary and high school education.


I wished I never took relationships with certain people to that certain level.


I wished I kicked against the walls harder than I did.


I wished I went to sleep earlier instead of starting to write this blog post on impulse, because then I'll have about only 2 hours of sleep to about 4 hours of class within a total of 8 hours of campus. And those are just approximate figures, mind you.


See? Adrenaline rushes. Always works.


I'm not alone in this matter of regretting about a good half of the decisions I made in life. Regret, disappointment toward myself, shame, and frustration are frequent emotions whenever I'm stuck in this kind of thought/emotional vortex.


Regret, because of obvious reasons. Disappointment that I let myself make such decisions. Shame, because of the implication of my decisions. And frustration, because I can't lie that I didn't know what would happen should I proceed with my decision - I knew exactly what would happen, but I went ahead anyway with some sort of self-conjured cloud about my head.


But then again, it would be even more stupid to wallow in these murky waters for too long. I mean I'm a klutz - I'd lose my footing or just by sheer absentmindedness as to the structure of my ankle bones might have me drenched in this swamp of negative emotions.


What happens when you fall in a swamp is that you get back out of that infectious swamp, and wash everything that fell in - your clothes, your hair, your body. Pop out that antibacterial, fragrance-heavy body wash, and lather well with a bath sponge (loofahs are the bomb). Remember to get under every nail.


To prevent myself from ever going near the swamp again is gonna be a slight challenge - all it takes is a little distraction for a mental detour. Let's just be a little more careful not to drop in like a total idiot again...

Saturday, September 6, 2014

My current story with Maxis & DiGi

Update: DiGi did call me to inform me about my request being rejected, and the reason for it being an error with my IC number. And calls after 6pm for services mean hardworking staff, from my perspective.


My first hand phone and mobile number were both hand-me-downs from my older sister - a Nokia 2100 (for which I purchased several different covers for), and an old Hotlink number.


I switched that number to DiGi in 2009 because of ... reasons (I got a boyfriend and since we both were using basic candybar phones, we had to actually text instead of WhatsApp, etc, which costed significantly more because we used different service providers).


I purchased another number in about 2011 at the Maxis Centre in The Gardens Mall, because I was in another relationship, and the same situation applies. Little did I know that my address was wrongly registered into Hotlink's system FOR THREE WHOLE YEARS.


A few months ago, I approached Paradigm Mall's DiGi Centre to submit an MNP request, which meant that I applied to have my service provider for my current number switched. I paid MYR10, and after months, there was no effect. That was when I requested to switch to DiGi Prepaid.


This time, I submitted another request to a DiGi Centre at The Mines Shopping Fair, and instead of Prepaid, I opted for the Postpaid 50 Smart Plan - 2GB data allowance, and a number of SMS and calls DiGi-to-DiGi for free, for MYR50 a month; reason being it would finally put an end to my survival on Wi-Fi, and it's easier when I have to call people (most people I know use DiGi, even my mum has switched to using DiGi).


I also asked the distracted young staff behind the counter how long it would take, and she told me it would take about 24 hours.


24 hours came and went. Knowing how Malaysian companies work, I gave it a week, since I also looked up some FAQ on DiGi's website and it was stated there that it could take up to 7 days to submit the request.


A week also came and went, and I finally picked up enough guts to call the DiGi helpline (I'm socially anxious that way LOL). I was put on hold for about 10 minutes, and after a few confirmation and verification procedures, I was told that my request was rejected, and the cause may be due to a wrong input of my IC number format by Maxis, and I had to call to confirm.


Called Maxis, was almost immediately connected, and after another few rounds of confirmations and verification procedures, I was told that my address is wrong, and to update it, I had to call Hotlink.


And call Hotlink I did, and I was attended to by a service staff who didn't bother separating his words. He sounded like,
"Alright,miss,letmereconfirmyournumbertobe012xxxxxxxandthepurposeofyourcalltodayistoupdateyourhouseaddress?CanIputyouonholdwhileIcheckourdatabaseandservice?Thankyou."


A brief while later, I was told that I had to proceed to a Maxis Centre to get this done. While I don't mind physically going out to get things done, why are there so few Maxis Centres in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor. The nearest one in KL is in The Gardens, and the most convenient one in Selangor is in Sunway Pyramid.


Firstly... How is it possible that the system has different IC number formats? The staff at DiGi told me it might be the presence or absence of dashes in between the different sections of the number. I thought there was a standard in format for IC number registration? At least there should be.


And Maxis, addresses are registered in reference to my IC, which is printed in sans serif block letters. And even if I were to write down my house number, "97" is no where near "83". Kudos to you on how you managed to fuck that up.


Also, I think it would be a good idea to have some sort of notification system should the request be rejected? Like through an alternate number, or via email. Would be much better than feeling significantly frustrated and nervous about having to call the helpline (again, I apologize for being a wuss).


So much trouble... just for one number.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Legal cigarettes vs. illegal cigarettes

To be honest, I wouldn't be able to tell them apart. I'm a person to usually go with the more widespread brands for any product, and any brand of product which has a less familiar packaging would not be my purchasing choice.


However, cigarettes are still cigarettes. You can argue that the increased amounts of chemicals, or presence of illegal substances in some brands increases the danger of smoking. I'm not in the health industry, neither am I interested in the manufacture of cigarettes, so I can neither refute nor confirm the argument presented. Even when there has been official reports on national newspapers about this matter, I still think it's incredulous. Again, not an expert.


My two cents is that they're cigarettes anyway. Personally, I like how smoking gudang garam seems more exciting than normal cigarettes. I prefer white filters over orange filter because they look more expensive and less samseng to me. Oh, and I dig, Dunhill over Marlboro - both ice.


Not trying to be sarcastic, but I could also argue that slim cigarettes are safer in a sense that you get the mental satisfaction of smoking one cigarette, but it's quantity of tobacco and thus chemicals is less than the conventional cigarette, making it a "healthier" smoking alternative.


Also, I could argue that light and menthol cigarettes are less hazardous than conventional cigarettes because they contain less chemicals for a lighter smoking experience and more menthol in place of other chemicals respectively.


With that said, I am no expert - I smoked for about a year and a half, switching from Marlboro Ice, to Pall Mall Mint, back to Marlboro, then switching to Dunhill when I tried and preferred the taste versus Marlboro, as well as Mevius, League Green, gudang garam, and Winston (which I detest) occasionally.


There are reasons why the government chose to make tobacco manufacturers put disgusting images of deformities on cigarette boxes - because they are dangerous and harmful nonetheless (though I still prefer Dunhill).


Just as a disclaimer, I am not encouraging smoking. I used to smoke, and now occasionally take puffs, but I'm not glamorizing it as a cool thing to do, or even close to healthy, for that matter.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Shallow

I'm starting to realize that I'm living in an actual nightmare.


In what way? you may ask. Granted I have more luxuries and exposures to cultures than a lot of other people have, but what if I told you that's all for naught?


Every single day I'm reminded - regardless of how good I'm feeling about myself on that particular day - that I can't be better than a bimbo of a hot girl standing next to me in butt-cheek-revealing hot pants and her tits falling out of her top.


Sex sells. It really does.


In a lot of ways, what talent you have is useless unless you dress up - not in a good quality pressed shirt with starched collars with professional-looking trousers.


No.


Why would anyone take notice of you - regardless of your skills and talents - unless you dress to impress? In the most subtly revealing piece of clothing that you have?


Day after day after day, I'm reminded that skinny is indeed better. Don't care if you're born with this body, skinny is better.


Oh, you're born with wide hips? Too bad you're a little on the chunky side...


No. The harsh reality is that even when people say all shapes are beautiful, confront them with someone who isn't a slender hourglass - everyone will point out something.


"Lose some weight." "I see you have a belly there, I have one too!" "Are your arms muscle or fat?"


Oversensitive? Maybe. Insecure? Absolutely.


Love thyself for thyself is impossible.


"Just ignore what they say, you're beautiful!" they tell me.


I was raised to listen to everyone. I was conditioned to satisfy everyone. I grew up doing everything I can to try to please everyone around me.


For the entirety of my life, what defined me among friends and family was mostly my body.


CNY of 2013 I had an uncle say that I finally lost weight.


"Finally"?


All the comments all throughout my life haven't exactly been puppy licks. Even if I manage to deflect every detonation thrown at me, don't you think they left some sort of indentation?


What with all the girls now... those with actual slender bodies desired by men everywhere, looking in the bathroom mirror and pointing out their "chunky thighs" and "bulging bellies".


Oh, you girls don't know the real struggle.


I've tried flash diets. I've tried anorexia. I've tried long, intense hours at the gym.


But all it takes is one small meal to render all that useless.


It's coming to the point where I feel that being hungry is feeling good. That depriving myself of nature's call feels so good. Perhaps even better than what's being laid on the table.


Having back pains and having every joint and muscle ache beyond comprehension is like an achievement for me ... until I don't see the results.


Yes, I pretty much value myself by how I look. Which, in my book, I'm not even in the book. It's shallow, but welcome to my reality.