Tuesday, October 31, 2006

It Hurts So Bad

Picture having an open wound that's in constant contact with water, surrounded by sharp edges and endures massive pain 3 times a day. Several days ago, I bit my tongue and now it has developed into a full-blown swelling.

To make matters worse, I bit my inner lip while I was out having my lunch JUST NOW. I was trying to position the food in my mouth so as not to come in contact with the swollen area but things got complicated and I accidentally clamped my teeth down too early.

Now with all the accumulated oral damage, it feels like there's a riot going on inside my mouth:

(Inside Ben's mouth)
Teeth (Police): Hey you guys better cool it or we'll be forced to get physical.
Tongue: [Hands over a RM10 note]

Even my accessory organs are corrupt. Anyway, it hurts like hell everytime I try to talk so the gang resorted to communicating with me in yes or no questions. Unfortunately answering them only make me look retarded:

(At a hawker centre)
Kim: Do you need me to order for you?
Ben: [Nods, nods]
Kim: I'm having porridge, you want one too?
Ben: [Shrugs, nods]
Kim: Without vegetables, right?
Ben: [Nods, nods]
Kim: You want the bigger portion?
Ben: [Shrugs, nods]

(Next table staring)

Kim: He's my brother and it's been a difficult time for all of us. Could you spare us some change?
Ben: !!!

Right now, I am practically drinking my Bonjela cream.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Our Other Dog Hating Neighbour

Our dog, Chocy, has been making new enemies around the neighbourhood. After the argument with our next door neighbour on the right, we decided to chain Chocy up for a while. However, the limited movement space sometimes has Chocy struggling to break free. This is usually accompanied by incessant barking and moaning that drives even ourselves up the walls.

That's when our neighbour from the left, an old grandma, resolves to take matters into her own hands. So what does a woman of 80 year life experience who have (on the way) figured out what is good and bad, right and wrong, do to quiet our dear Chocy down? She lights a firecracker and throws it at our poor dog.

Normie saw the whole thing and quickly went outside to confront her:

Normie: Ah-ma, why did you throw a firecracker at our dog?
Grandma: I wanted to watch my TV show, the dog was so noisy.
Normie: But what you just did is inhuman!
Grandma: You raised your voice at me! I'm an aging grandmother and YOU still want to pick on me. Didn't your parents teach you anything?
Normie: ...

She could get with anything if she wants to with a statement like that:

(In court)
Judge: So it says here that you robbed a bank, raped a young boy on the streets and murdered your daughter-in-law. What do you have to say for yourself?
Grandma: I'm old.
Judge: Oh well then, you're free to go. Here's a gold-plated fake teeth for your troubles.

Speechless, Normie gave up and went back in. He couldn't say or do anything and neither could we. Each of us were trained to fully respect the elderly without question and we did. I met Adrian (who's in KL) online to tell him about the incident:

(On MSN)
Ben: Our grandma neighbour..
Adrian: What's her problem this time?
Ben: threw a firecracker at our dog.
Adrian: FUCK!
Ben: Normie confronted her but she played the "I'm old" card.
Adrian: Let's get back at her.
Ben: How?
Adrian: We sneak into her room while she's asleep, surround her bed with firecrackers and then light them all up at once.
Ben: Wouldn't that get her killed?
Both: ....
Ben: I'll get a copy of her keys.
Adrian: I'll be back with a fresh supply of fireworks.

There's the elderly and there's the firecracker wielding devil woman. One needs to be respected and another needs to be sent back to where 'it' belongs.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

The Unromantic Friend

(Driving home from dinner)
CK: I think I am becoming less romantic.
Ben: Why do you say that?
CK: Back then when I go after a girl, I used to write letters, buy flowers, give presents and go on fine-dining. Even before she was my girlfriend, I'd willingly do them.
Ben: Thrill of the chase is better than the bird in the hand, huh?
CK: Exactly. Now, there's no thrill whatsoever! Now it's like meet a girl, get her contact number, text message her for 2 days, pop the question and ta-da, she's mine.
Ben: That easy?
CK: Here's the messed up part; despite the dull unromantic approach, most of them would usually say yes. Like they are also as desperate as we are. There's no 'challenge' anymore.
Ben: Ok Mr. 6 exs, it's time for you do to the obvious.
CK: Take a break from the dating scene?
Ben: Turn gay.
CK: ...
Ben: Well think about it, what's more challenging than courting the opposite sex? Courting one from our OWN gender!
CK: ...
Ben: And to make things even more challenging, go for a straight guy!
CK: ...
Ben: Once you bag that straight guy, your parents can finally brag to their relatives, "My son can have ANYONE he wants."
CK: I am never opening up to you again.
Ben: It was worth it.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Women Are Like Corpses

I cannot stress enough how our mechanical engineering faculty is in serious need of some female undergraduates. How serious? Let's put it this way; Since day 1 that I got to UTM till now (a year and a half), I have never made one single friend from the opposite sex.

Stop laughing. This also holds true for most of my coursemates. I SAID STOP LAUGHING! There are practically no female undergrads in our faculty, sure there's a few but they would usually always be attached and hence become off limits. There's no denying that we are way past desperate right now.

Our course was thinking of throwing a party this weekend, just for funsies. I told my friend June (a female friend I ALREADY had back when I was in Tawau) about it and she was rather eager to come. That's when I had to give her a short pep talk:

Ben: No, you can't come.
June: Why not?
Ben: Because you're a girl.
June: So you guys are having some sort of all-guy orgy there, big deal. I'll watch. quietly.
Ben: It's not that. See to us, women are like corpses.
June: ... corpses?
Ben: And we're the vultures.
June: Oh..
Ben: When my faculty mates see you, the only girl in the party, they will make A LOT of advances. I don't want you to feel uncomfortable.
June: I don't mind, no guy has ever approached me since I got here anyway. I wonder why.
Ben: [Ben, choose your words carefully] Well, maybe it's because you're not a corpse yet.
June: What?
Ben: You're still living and breathing.
June: Did you just say that I'm not a woman?!
Ben: No, you're just one of those healthier-looking corpses.
June: Now I'm ugly?!
Ben: I.. er..

(Picture Ben struggling to stay afloat in the middle of the sea while screaming, "Help! Help!")

Ben: You're living, breathing and healthy-looking! How can you not take that as a compliment?!

That'll teach me never to use the vulture-corpse comparison ever again.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

My Most Memorable Hari Raya (Personal)

I was awakened today by the sound of our neighbour's ghastly yelling. It's been a while since I'm roused from my sleep by a loud, ringing noise. It is after all the festive holiday, one that doesn't concern me so why bother getting up early. Truth be told, I was angry. Why is it that THEY get an entire week off but WE only get two days? It's not fair and I'd like to think I'm sleeping in as a sign of protest.

His voice was getting louder by the minute, or maybe that's how it seemed to me at that time. "Bersihkan tahi anjing kamu!", he yelled. "Kamu jangan buang sampah di tempat kami la!", Adrian retaliated. ... ADRIAN?!

I immediately jumped out of my bed and rushed downstairs. Apparently, this episode wasn't over yet. Reinforcement has arrived and Adrian was receiving severe verbal punishment from (suprise, suprise) the neighbour's daddy who came home to celebrate raya with his son.

"Kamu tahu tak undang-undang? Kalau anjing itu tak ada lesen, saya boleh panggil polis datang dan ambil anjing kamu!", he threatened. Adrian turned fuming red and replied, "Saya budak universiti, tahu apa itu undang-undang! Kau tak perlu ajar saya!"

The man got so irritated by Adrian's response, he practically screamed his next sentence, "Tunjuk saya lesen itu la! Kau ingat aku tak tahu kau menipu? Kamu tengok plat kereta saya." He points to his Toyota Unser and there printed on his car plate were the words, PUTRAJAYA. "Saya officer kerajaan," he proudly declared.

Taken aback, Adrian turned diplomatic, "Ok sir, sekarang baru jam 7 pagi. Kita janganlah cakap terlalu bising." "SAYA MAHU BISING! Saya akan buat panggilan polis, dan kamu akan tahu siapa saya!" and the man marched back into his house. Adrian, equally pissed, stormed back into our house and started mumbling profanities. It was clearly a poor start to the morning.

After a while, Adrian cooled down and asked me to purchase some kuih to give to the neighbours as a sign of apology. "We can't keep this sort of things in our heart," he told me. Adrian wanted to apologise himself but he was rushing to return to KL. Truth be told, I wasn't too happy with his decision. The man was clearly being a prick, why should Adrian say sorry?!

But it was a favor for Adrian and I had to do it. While I was shopping around the kuih section in Jusco, I kept thinking about how unfair most things are in this country. I just saw an elder malay man threaten a helpless chinese boy using his power in office. The same power the country bestowed upon him to HELP the people. The entire system is screwed up!

As I waited in line to pay for the kuih (still engulfed in rage), I noticed that the cashier had his Raya clothes on. He was frowning the entire time, I would be too if I were him. It's Raya and instead of being home with his family, he was doing a price check on a loaf of Gardenia bread. Of the 5 people in front of me, none of them even bothered to wish him happy holidays so I thought I might as well be the first.

After he handed me my change, I greeted him with my perkiest tone, "Selamat Hari Raya!". His face suddenly lights up and he gave me one of the warmest smile I've ever received in my life. He thanked me and I noticed even after I was walking away from the counter, he was still looking at me and smiling. It's as if he has been waiting for ages for someone to wish him that, which really is suprising. I'm glad I made his day.

The rage in me was instantly put off. I don't know why but all I could think about was getting home quickly. "Sir, kami ingin meminta maaf pasal kekecohan pagi tadi," I apologised to the neighbour's dad. "Oh tak apa, saya sendiri pun dah melampau," he replied. After a brief exchange of self-blaming remarks, we called it a truce and I handed him the kuih.

I wished him, "Selamat Hari Raya sir" and he followed it up by giving me a very familiar smile, very much like the cashier's one. Amidst all the war and tragedies happening around us, it's sometimes better to just forgive and forget. That is after all what Hari Raya is all about.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

That Trip To The Zon

For the past 3 days I've been doing nothing except stare at the four walls. Of course I didn't JUST stare at my own four walls for 3 days, that would be crazy. Occasionally, I would go to Normie's room to stare at his four walls.

Yes, I was dead bored. So today, we decided to take trip down The Zon, a free trade zone in Johor Bahru where everything are sold tax-free. I was all ready to do some serious liquor and beer stocking but then we were told that each person is ONLY limited to two cans of beer. The tax-free liqours were only for foreigners. No matter, paying RM2.80 for a RM7.00 beer is still worth the 45 minute drive even if it's only two cans.

We are so cheap. Anyway, we just needed an excuse to get out of the house and have fun. Even the drive there was entertaining:

(Winter Sonata playing on the radio)
Normie: The male actor in this series looks like a chick.
Ben: That's how most asian artists look like these days. They go for the feminine look.
Kim: Some people criticised the Korean actor, Bae Yong Jun, for putting on so much make-up.
Ben: Huh?
Kim: Japan conducted a survey on "The most good-looking asian artist" and Bae Yong Jun came up top. The hottest looking male asian artist wears foundation and mascara. Just shows you that the more feminine an asian guy is, the more good-looking he is deemed to be.
Ben: F4 would be a good example of women-like dudes. It's a group of four guys with long hair, fair skin and tight shirts. And the asian girls go nuts over them!
Normie: You know, all of them are pretty muscular. Vic was an exception but I think he looks pretty buff now.
Ben: Jerry has the nicest body among them all, it's toned!
Kim: I like Vaness's hair, so long and soft. I would grab him by the hair and smell him dry of his conditioner.
Everyone: ...
Normie: We shall not speak of this ever again.
Everyone: [Stares at Ben]
Ben: I swear, I won't, I won't.

Yeah right, like I would pass up a good blog material. So after 30 minutes of awkward silence, we finally arrived at The Zon and began shopping. Besides 2 cans of beer, we also bought some chocolates. Tax-free chocolates aren't that cheap but they're still cheap-ER. After that, we strolled around The Zon and gave every foreigner there 'the look'. Bah! Them walking around with their bottle of tax-free Jack Daniels and us with our two measly cans of beer. Of course we'd be jealous!

After spending about half and hour in that place, we left for home. Unfortunately, leaving this place requires us to pass through the customs checkpoint. Now we've done nothing wrong. We each only took 2 cans of beer and that's it but I was still scared shitless. I guess it's because I have an unexplained fear of the local men in blue:

(Kim driving towards the customs checkpoint)
Normie: Hey look, they're not so strict. See, they just let the car in front of pass through.
Kim: (Passes the officer) Hello.
Officer: (Stops the car) I need to ask you boys to step out of the vehicle. Please empty all your pockets and pop up the trunk.
Everyone: [Stares at Ben]
Ben: Are you kidding? This one is definitely going in.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Hawker Stall Peddlers

Yesterday we had dinner at the usual hawker stall. The thing about Malaysian hawker stalls are it's always crowded with table-to-table peddlers who are trying to sell you illegal goods like jewelry and watches. To some, this might be a good thing. To me however, I despise the crap out of them.

Take this scene for example. There you are enjoying your greasy chinese food and out of nowhere, a guy nudges you from behind and asks, "This one veli cheap watches, veli good plice I tiau you!" Your appetite immediately becomes as spoiled as the peddler's English.

I basically just ignore them but it's awkward to have them stare at you while you stuff your face. It feels like you're eating for the sake of keeping your mouth full and occupied. After a while, they'll get the message and move on but then you realise that you just swallowed half of your dinner. Sigh. I mean honestly, what response were they expecting?:

"I came to this food centre searching for a handbag and I must say the service here is terrible. You are 10 minutes late. Yes I'd like the blue one, please."

Sounds like there's a whole new reason for going to a hawker stall:

(Discussing about dinner)
I need to get me a new purse and Lim Restaurant peddlers sells the cheapest ones.

Dad: Actually I was thinking of Yap Restaurant. I have to return this pair of ripped jeans the damn Vietnamese peddler sold me.
Mum: But this RM5 voucher for Lim Restaurant expires tomorrow. Please, dear.
Dad: Fine, Lim Restaurant it is. We could eat there too, you know.
Mum: Oh, ok.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

I Ain't Going Home

Today is day one of my 2 week study break. I really needed to make the most of this break so I can recuperate from my poor carry marks and study even harder for my finals. But it's been a while since my parents have seen their only son face to face, so for this past week they've been understandably relentless in their efforts to persuade me home.

For an entire week, I suffered an onslaught of bribes and guilt trips. It wasn't easy but I still stayed strong. By the end of the week, they finally gave up and I'm glad they understood. My dad even called me up to tell me how much he respected my decision:

(While having dinner)
Dad: Hello son. You really aren't coming home, huh? Looks like you have your priorities all straighten out.
Ben: Glad you understand.
Dad: So what are you having for dinner?
Ben: Er, just plain ol' chicken rice.
Dad: We're having steak. Mmmm, it's so yummy.
Ben: I want mom to cook steak for me when I get home!
Dad: Oh, but you're NOT home. And I don't think we'll be having western food for another 6 months. How sad. -click-

See, respect.

Saturday, October 21, 2006


Compliments are something I have problems receiving as well as giving. When someone gives me a compliment, I always blush and say, "Thank you" in a really soft tone then proceed to curtsey. How else do you respond to a compliment without sounding cocky?!

And things turn from bad to worse when it comes to dishing out compliments, for me anyway. I'm sure most of you have seen those commercials where a kid gains a questionable ability to outsmart their parents just by drinking a glass of milk. I hated those commercials because at the end of them, the parents would always pat their child's head and go, "My son is so smart". It's just so fake!

Ok maybe that's because I come from a family that doesn't show much affection through words:

(I was in Form 1)

Dad: What?
Ben: I am selected as the school prefect! I feel like a young policeman!
Dad: Congratulations, you're now one step closer to being part of our country's corrupt law system.

Heck, the best compliment I've ever gotten from my parents was, "Thank god it's a boy!" but even that was quickly followed by, "This kid looks sick. Doctor, please tell me there's still one more." Don't get me wrong though, I don't come from a broken home or anything. The love is there but my family prefers to hide them inside a huge barrel of sarcasm. Take this recent conversation with my little sister for example:

(On MSN)
Lil sis:
Bennie, I got 6th in class! Dance with me!

Ben: 6th?!
Lil sis: Good or bad? It's good la weh!
Ben: How many students are there in your class?
Lil sis: 34. I'm in the best class and I got 6th!
Ben: ...
Lil sis: Be happy for me!
Ben: You're 28th from behind.
Lil sis: I hate you.

There's love in it, somewhere.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Our Dog-Hating Neighbour

Lately whenever we return home from campus, we'll always find a new bruise or two on Chocy, our dog. The sticks and stones scattered around our front compound shows that someone in the neighbourhood has a personal agenda against our mutt. Mind you, our next door granny is off the list. She couldn't even lift a rock much less throw one.

Our lecture was cancelled today so we spent the entire afternoon occasionally peeking through the window, hoping to catch the culprit red handed. Sure enough at around 2pm, our dog started yelping in agony. Adrian quickly turned his attention to the window and sees our OTHER neighbour lunging rocks and broken sticks at poor Chocy.

Adrian quickly summoned the entire house to confront our animal-abusing neighbour. Now, confronting people isn't exactly what we do best. That's what you get when you have a house filled with soft-spoken undergrads. Lucky for us, CK had some experience:

Adrian: So how do we confront him?
CK: It's ok, I've done this before. All of you just follow me outside and I'll do all the talking.
Kim: And we just stand there?
Adrian: No, we put on our mean faces too.
Kim: Yeah! Grrrrrrrr!
CK: You look constipated.

After the short pep talk, it was time for the dirty work:

CK: Hey, we saw you throwing rubbish into our house! Why did you do that?!
Neighbour: There's a dog in your house.
Adrian: So what?!
Neighbour: I'm Muslim!
CK: It's OUR dog and you have no right to abuse it! And aren't you people suppose to refrain from sinning this ramadhan month?
Neighbour: ...
Adrian: Well what do you have to say?
Neighbour: Your friend looks like he needs to go to the toilet real quick.
Kim: Damn.

So yeah, the man blatantly used his religion as an excuse to hurt our poor dog. All that I can say is I am very disappointed.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Engineering vs. Business

We've always had our ethnic lecture at the business faculty. Unfortunately, since there are no in between breaks, we'd usually be sprinting from OUR faculty to theirs meaning I never have the time to observe the business undergrads.

Yesterday, our class before ethnic was cancelled so we decided to hang around the business faculty for a bit. So here are some of the things I observed:

  • Business students have more than one layer of attire. Mechanical students on the other hand, have never even heard of the word 'layer'.. or 'attire'. These guys dress to impress. Engineering students dress like there's a faculty PA announcement that tells us to quickly strip and do the macarena every 5 minutes. As long as it slides in and out fast.
  • THERE ARE WOMEN EVERYWHERE! THEY'RE SO HOT AND TIGHT! .. Hey I bet you'd be excited too if you spent most of your time in classes where there's a 70:1, guy to girl ratio. That's like 0.014 of woman for each male engineering students.
  • They stare. Ok maybe there's a good reason for it. But I swear, after I told Normie to quit adjusting his crotch and Kim to stop digging his nose, they were STILL staring! So rude. - "Ben, stop scratching your pits."
  • And of course, the business students are morally superior compared to the engineering students. We found a lot of these notices stuck around the faculty.

From sweaters to watches to wallets, we couldn't stop laughing when we saw these notices. It's not the fact that business students are a forgetful bunch that tickled our funny bone but it was the fact that these notices were even put up in the first place. I mean, what was the owner thinking?!

Guy Who Found Sweater: [Sees the notice] I think I should return this RM200 sweater to him.
Friend of Guy Who Found Sweater: Yeah you must. That sweater might have some sentimental values to it.
GWFS: Maybe the owner has had this sweater since he was a kid.
FGWFS: Maybe he went out on his first date with that sweater.
GWFS: Or maybe he found his true love while wearing this sweater!
Both: Aaaawww.
FGWFS: Or maybe, just maybe.. his grandmother knitted it for him.
GWFS: His grandmother knitted this commercially sold Nike sweater?
FGWFS: Yeah. His DEAD grandmother..
GWFS: [Tears welling up] I'll call him right away!

Engineering students would lelong the damn sweater for half-price at a flea market.

Monday, October 16, 2006

My Indian Barber Haircut

Indian barber shops are dirt cheap for a reason. When I got home from my first indian barber hair cut, my mom kept telling me that I finally look more like a "good boy". Then I got back to UTM and the gang couldn't stop asking me if I wanted to sell them a vacuum cleaner. That's when I promised myself I would never step foot into an indian barber shop again.

But of course, promises are made to be broken. Today Adrian wanted to get his haircut there, reason being that his part time job as an insurance salesman requires him to look more matured. His boss's slogan would be "Nothing says Buy My Insurance like a bad haircut".

Since we were all in a tight budget, Kim and I decided to tag along. I know, what was I thinking right? Maybe I just got in the wrong barber shop last time and told myself that this haircut would be better. Well it didn't help too much that the name of the barber shop was "Kedai Gunting Sai". It didn't help too much either that before we entered, a bald man came out and said to us in a heavy Indian accent, "You have chosen the right place" while stroking his er.. head.

(Seated on the chair and feeling like I'm on a death sentence)
Barber: How would you like your last meal to be?
Ben: What?!
Barber: I asked how would you like your haircut to be?
Ben: Thin and short.
Barber: [Yanks Ben's hair with a broken comb]
Ben: Can't you slow it down?
Barber: You be a man about it!

(After he's done cutting)
Ben: Oh god, my head hurts so bad. (By now, the barber has my head locked up in his arms) Er.. what are you doing?
Barber: [Snaps Ben's head to the left]
Ben: What the..
Barber: [Snaps Ben's head to the right]
Ben: Aaaaaahhhh!
Barber: [Pushes Ben to the front and starts giving him a ruthless back massage]
Ben: Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh
Kid, you gotta relax.
Ben: You're a barber! What are you doing giving me a friggin' massage?!
Barber: [Continues whacking]
Ben: Ooh it feels like you're throwing bricks against my behind.
Barber: All done. That will be RM7.

For RM7 I got my hair yanked out my skull, my bones busted, and a brief lesson on manliness and anger management. Who cares if it's bang for buck (quoted by Adrian). It's back to my regular quiet and torture-free RM20 haircut.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Teaching Is Not Easy

Adrian was getting good money from his current tutoring job. Problem is, the kid he's tutoring is making him earn every cent:

Adrian: Your semester finals is coming up so let's do some light revision. Do you know what's the basic formula for momentum?
Student: What's a 'momentum'?
Adrian: It's 'm' times 'v'.
Student: What's 'v'?
Adrian: It's velocity.
Student: What's 'm'?
Adrian: Ok.. maybe I should start from the beginning. State newton's first law.
Student: Wha..
Adrian: Ok what is it now?! What's 'newton'? What's 'first'? What's 'law'? Kid, there is no more question left for you to ask that could show me how miniscule your knowledge is on form 4 physics.
Student: What's that funny word that you used?
Adrian: Miniscule?
Student: Physics.

At least he is paid RM180 plus he's only taking crap from ONE student for only 4 days a month. I, on the other, was paid RM400 to take crap from 200 students for 20 days a month:

(Form 2 Class)
Ben: Today we're going to do divisions. What's 20 divided by 5?
Whole class: 4!
Ben: Good, now what's the answer to this? ['60/3' written on the whiteboard].
Whole class: 60.. 3.. 60.. 60.. 3..
Ben: What?!
Student: Sir, that line between 60 and 3.. it means OR right?
Ben: [Bangs head on the whiteboard]

Teachers, lecturers, profesional tutors, how do you guys do it?

Friday, October 13, 2006

Say It Right

Adrian once told me that he was going to make 'lizard' for us after our dinner. Since Penang is like a food-haven and all, I thought he wanted to give us a little glimpse of some special dishes from his hometown. Of course it was after dinner that we found out he actually meant 'dessert'.

Mispronounciations can be funny. I remembered on the very first day we moved in, Adrian tried to engage the next door grandma in a light conversation:

Adrian: Hello ah-ma.
Grandma: (Silence)
Adrian: So.. -points to a pot- what plant is this?
Grandma: (Silence)
Ben: I think you gotta speak louder. Maybe she's already in that period of her life where she has turned semi-deaf.
Adrian: But she hardly looks 60.
Ben: Ask her how old is she.
Adrian: Are you nuts? You don't ask a woman her age.
Ben: Fine, Mr. Courteous. Ask her in your own charming way but add a little volume to it just in case.
Adrian: It's called 'deaf period' right?
Ben: Yep.
Grandma: What?!
Adrian: DEATH! DEATH! [Pointing to his ear but with hands made to shape like a gun] DEATH! DEATH!

The very next day, we found:
1. Our dog badly bruised (stones everywhere),
2. Our clothes wet (sprayed with hose),
3. And a tennis ball stuck in Kim's car exhaust.

Forget what I said before. Mispronounciations (plus hand mimes) can be scary.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

A Hot & Hazy Afternoon

It's a Wednesday afternoon and everyone at home were dehydrating from the unbelievably hot weather outside. Most of us were already either drinking our 5th bottle of water or taking our 5th shower of the day. We felt like elephants. Come to think of it, it would be kinda awesome:

(Everyone as elephants)
Ben: Look at my nose, it's so long (waves) and flexible!
Adrian: Why am I in this dream sequence?
Ben: *Stiffens nose* Let's play hockey!
Adrian: You've got 5 seconds to get me out of here.
Ben: Let's play tug-of-war!
Adrian: 3.. 2..
Ben: Fine! *poof* ... -Looks around- (Tries to reach for the penis with the nose)

Apparently the weather got to me. So I thought I'd try to escape from the heat wave by grabing some shut-eye. Unfortunately, the heat got me twisting and turning on the bed several times before I could finally doze off. But I'm glad it got me up long enough to catch Normie's antics:

(Everything heard while half-asleep)

*Our rusty gate swings open*
Normie: Chocy, back! Chocy, NO!
Normie: HOLY FUCKING SHIT! Guys, our dog just ran away!
Normie: Ben? ... Adrian?
Normie: Sigh. I'll get him back myself.
Normie: Chocy, come on boy. *whistles* *claps* *whistles* *claps*
Normie: *Panting* Chocy.. get back.. here. *panting*
Normie: Fine go ahead and run! I hope a fucking lorry runs you over and flattens your corpse till every part of your organs are shot out of your mouth and splattered all over the street for me to point and laugh at! And after I'm done laughing and tasting your blood, I'm going to nail your sheet-like corpse on my wall just so I can laugh myself to sleep! HAHA! FUCK YEAH!
Normie: (Looks over) Oh, hello Mrs. Lim. So have you considered letting me tutor your kid?

Another typical hot afternoon in Skudai.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Small Talk

York was complaining that everyday before a test, that's when tons of SMSs and phone calls start flooding his cell to ask about the time and venue for the occasion. Reason being that he is the only one in our course who religiously keeps account of where and when every single test is being held. He seemed very annoyed.

Worse part is, he complained to us about this problem a day before our fluids test. So naturally, we were a little hesistant to ask him:

Kim: Where is the test being held?
Ben: At Singapore.
Kim: Sigh. Fine, I'll call York.
Ben: But didn't you hear him rant about this yesterday?
Kim: No one else knows about the time and place for our fluids test!
Ben: Fine you call him but after asking, engage him in small talk so he won't feel so used.
Kim: Ok. -Dial- -Wait- "York? Hey listen we would like to know... oh wow that was quick, thanks." P19 hall at 9pm, now what do I do?
Ben: [Whisper] Small talk!
Kim: So.. er.. Are you sitting for the exam?
Ben: [Mouth opens wide]

Kim could've gone for "How early will you be there?" or "Are you well prepared?". Instead, he went for the homerun.

Monday, October 09, 2006


A society was having a gathering over at our house. Unfortunately, there were some transportation problem. Seeing as most of the members were female (chicks don't drive, they tumpang), it meant that the guys (like 6 out of 20) had to do all the fetching:

York: I am so pissed!
Ben: Why is that?
York: Three other guys and myself had to fetch these 4 girls over from the nearby bus stop..
Ben: Yeah I'd be pissed too if a girl was hugging and cuddling me tightly behind on my motorcycle.
York: Let me finish. So the girls were already waiting for us at the bus stop when we arrived but their expression immediately turned pale upon the sight of our 4 motorcycles.
Ben: You mean upon the sight of your 4 horny faces.
York: [So that could be it...] Anyway, they told us, "But we've never sat on a motorcycle before. We want a car!" WALAO! It's already good enough we fucking rode under the hot afternoon sun just to fetch your pampered ass, now you wanna be picky about tranportation?!
Ben: But I do know for a fact that most girls are afraid to sit on a motorcycle.
York: So what?! There we were, 4 guys on their motorcycles, having a long discussion with 4 wannabe queens, in a crowded bus stop, under the hot scorching sun. At one point, a bystander even came to me and said, "You guys shouldn't be doing this in broad daylight."
Ben: I don't get it.
York: It looked like we were picking up hookers.
Ben: ...
York: Yeah.. And after 10 minutes of persuasion, I gave up and just took off by myself. Screw them bitches.

Like I said, I personally know some girls who won't ride a motorcycle even if their dear life depended on it:

Motor Man: I am Brad Pitt, hop on my motorcycle and I will marry you.
Girl: No.

Maybe it's the:
1. Fear of being unlady-like.
2. Fear of falling off and breaking open their heads.
3. Fear of getting kidnapped while waiting in traffic.
4. Fear of tearing their hymens and losing their virginity.

But then again, who knows.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Meet The Parents

My two week study break is coming up and I cannot be more happier. But then comes the question of whether or not I am going home during the break. Then I met up with my mom online:

(On MSN)
Mum: When are you coming home to KL?
Ben: I don't know whether I wanna come back during the study break.
Mum: Why not?!
Ben: I did badly in my first tests. I gotta study hard to score in the finals.
Mum: At least come back for a week..
Ben: But I've got 6 subjects to study.
Mum: Hmm, it's been a while since you've had good food, right?
Ben: Mum, I..
Mum: Veal chop marinated overnight in a savory blend of pepper vinegar, garlic and onions. Broiled and served sizzling with hot sweet peppers.
Ben: What was that?
Mum: No, I'm just trying out this new recipe book. Oven roasted free-range double chicken breast stuffed with garlic herb cheese and served with lemon butter.
Ben: You know what? It has been a while since I've had western food.
Mum: Marinated Portobello mushrooms on our garlic mashed potatoes, with grilled asparagus, broccoli, tomatoes and sizzling lemon butter.
Ben: I think I'll be able to make it back this break.
Mum: Good. Wait, your dad wants to talk to you.


Dad: Hey, you better score 3.7 and above this semester.
Ben: I don't think I'll be able to do that seeing as I..
Dad: Well then, I also don't think I'll be able to bank in the right amount of money into your account once every two months.
Ben: You mean once every month.
Dad: No. Once every TWO months.
Ben: I'll see what I can do.
Dad: That's better.


Mum: So when are you coming back?
Ben: I can't. I gotta study extra hard now.
Mum: Seared rare tuna topped with Colossal lump crabmeat and served sizzling with red pepper pesto.
Ben: I.. I.. I..

Leave it to the parents to threaten their child with food and money.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Why I Am Here In UTM

It's a fact that no parent with the money and the right mind and the money and the M-O-N-E-Y would even consider sending their child to a Malaysian public university. Hence, most undergraduates here come from a poor financial background. More often than not it also means that their parents never got very far, education-wise:

(After the final period)
Ben: Another day, another homework, another assignment, another test. Sigh. Come la, let's quit our studies. Why bother going for a degree, everyone has one anyway.
Normie: No, I want to do my family proud! I want people to say, "A Yap graduated from a Malaysian public university".
Ben: Woah, that would be awesome.
Normie: Did you know that my both my parents were only educated till Form 3? I wanna show the world that I got to where I am now all by myself!
CK: That's nothing. My dad only got till Standard 6 and my mum never went to school.
Normie: How about you, Ben?
Ben: Both my parents studied till Form 5.
CK & Normie: Wa, they got so far? Hahaha! [Teasing] Ben's parents are smart, Ben's parents are smart, Ben's parents are smart.
Ben: ... something is very very wrong here.

Anyway, I'm glad Normie reminded me of why I'm here. Sure my family had the money and I could already be doing my final year at Nottingham's by now. But I'd rather wait 2 more years just so I can shout out loud, "I friggin' graduated from a Malaysian public university!".

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

A Prayer For Parallel Parking

Parallel parking can be a nightmare to most drivers out there. It's the one driving manouvre that requires quick pedal, brake and gear shifting action combined with a very keen perception of depth. Kim has been driving for 3 years and of course, all the gear shifting and clutch control has already become second nature to him. Yet, he is still terrified of parallel parking.

Even if there's a parallel spot right at the entrance of the coffeeshop, he would still go for that slide-in parking spot 3 blocks away. It can be really frustating at times to take a long walk to the shop and then see some other car claim that parallel spot in less than 5 seconds. So yesterday, we MADE him parallel park:

Ben: Ok here's a spot (parallel).
Kim: It's too small.
Ben: That spot could fit half a truck!
Adrian: Come on just park here, it's right in front of the shop. The next empty spot is (looks ahead) none.
Kim: Fine! (Reverses the car slowly into the parking spot)
Adrian: Dude, you're sweating.
Kim: Shut up! (Trying to get a clearer view of the front bumper) Please don't hit, please don't hit, please don't hit.
Ben: ... Your driving instructor must be a very religious man.

Oh well, things could be worse:

(Me as a passenger on an airplane that's ready for take-off)
Pilot: This is your captain speaking, please fasten your seatbelts as we prepare for take-off... Please take off, please take off, OMG PLEASE FUCKING TAKE OFF!
Ben: Kim?
Pilot/Kim: Oh, hey Ben! ... Damn it, I forgot to shut off the mic again. Can you tell me how many people are left in the cabin this time?
Ben: None, not even the deaf guy sitting beside me. I guess he could still see the fear in the eyes of the other 200 passengers around him. Hey I'm a little late for my meeting so I'll just re-engage the emergency exits and we could be on our way?
Kim: Sure, thanks man.

Monday, October 02, 2006

My One Heck Of A Futsal Team

It was a busy and fun weekend. Last Saturday, we went for the Mooncake Eve Celebration and the day after, we participated in a whole-day futsal competition. Top football players from around UTM gather to pit their mad skills against each other where eventually, only one team will emerge victorious.

Every team that played ran after the ball like their life depended on it and the goalkeepers didn't seem to mind putting their bodies through some major punishments just to prevent the ball from entering their nets. That was the other teams. Then we have OUR team (Ahmeng was our captain):

(Pep talk)
Ahmeng: Now all you have to do is chase down anyone who crosses our half with the ball.
Ben (Defender): Don't worry! I'll defend my half like Roger Federer, dribble it up ala' Vince Carter and then strike a hole-in-one, Tiger Woods style!
Ahmeng: It's been a while since you've played football, huh?
Ben: Those were just random names I heard before switching from dad's ESPN to my Cartoon Network.

(Watching the match)
Kim (Goalkeeper): Hahahahaha!

Ahmeng: What are you laughing at?
Kim: Look at that goalkeeper, he's not wearing the right attire.
Ahmeng: Maybe he handles the ball better without gloves on.

Kim: It's not just the gloves.
Ahmeng: What else, padded shirts?
Kim: Er...

(Watching the match)
Wanyean (Midfield): I am bored. When is it going to be our turn?
Ahmeng: Two more matches after this one.
Wanyean: Aaawww! ... Itu dia Shukor Adan dengan bola untuk pasukan Selangor. Betapa banyaknya skil yang ditunjukkan oleh beliau. Pasukan lawan tidak dapat menghentikan Kaki Seribu Bayangnnya!
Ahmeng: What are you doing?!
Wanyean: I'm commentating.
Ben: I wanna join! Budak berbaju oren dengan gayanya menghantar bola kepada ahli pasukan.
Wanyean: Oren? Kita orang sebut jingga la!
Ben: Jenga?
Wanyean: Jingga bukan jenga la, bangang! Itu mainan budak kecil!
Ben: Cis, berani kau panggil saya 'bangang' di depan peminat-peminat setia saya!
(Everyone on the court staring at Wanyean & Ben)

It's obvious that we joined the competition just for fun. At the end of the day, our team lost 1, drew 1 and won 1. Not too bad, huh? Now, we need nothing less than a win from our next match on Wednesday. Sigh. Wish us luck!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Mooncake Eve Celebration At UTM

The mooncake festival is upon us and the folks at UTM has decided to organise an event to celebrate just that. I for one had no intention of going, whatsoever. I had a feeling this would be one very dull and poorly organised event. Don't get me wrong, I had more important things to tend to like er.. ehm.. (opens up personal organiser, *flip*, empty, *flip*, empty, *flips to last page*, A note!: "Dear self, you have got to get a life").

So here I am at the UTM's Mooncake Eve Festival. Curse you past Ben. Pictures follow, click on them to enlarge.

We found this humongous contraption just as we entered the place. The idea is to get people to write their wishes and then stick them on it. I thought it was silly. I mean you're putting up your hopes and dreams for everyone else to see. What a silly thing to do! (Guy walks by: Can't believe some idiot pasted his blog address all over the top half of the contraption! It was Sew.. something!) ... Don't look at me like that, I bet you would do the same too.

It wasn't at all like I expected, there were A LOT of people there! In the middle of the venue was a huge stage where they had performances going on throughout the night, from choir groups to breathtaking taekwando showcases.

But the highlight of the entire night was what was going on AROUND the venue. They had like a funfair-like thing going on where there were a total of 15 games to be played. You can win yourself tickets and for each 4 tickets you collect, you can redeem them for one lantern. Best of all, it's totally FREE! So I tried my hand at a few of them:

Game 1: Squirt The Candles. To get a ticket, you'd have put out at least 3 out of 10 candles from a distance by squirting water out of a salt shaker.

Ben: [Desperately squirting] How is it possible that not even one candle was put out?! Did you see that, it dimmed a while and then lighted back up again! You guys are using trick candles. Booo!
Adrian: [Quick squirt] Not a candle left burning, ticket please.

Game 2: Fishing. To get a ticket, you'd have to fish out at least 3 tiny gold fishes off the pool. The catch is instead of a fishing net, you'll be using tissue paper stapled on a huge ring as your fishing tool.

Ben: [Tissue paper immediately breaks upon contact on water] This is ludacris! It's already hard enough to get one of them tiny critters with a fishing net, now we're supposed to catch 3 using tissue paper enforced nets?!
Gamesperson: This man (pointing to Adrian) caught 10!

My self esteem dropped so low, people were trampling all over it. I never liked funfair-type games. But on the whole, I'm glad I went to this small but eventful celebration. The performances were good enough to keep the crowd entertained and the games were exciting enough to KEEP the crowd, period (I spent a whole hour there).

CK, me, Normie & Kim. You might notice that my face and Normie's are painted. I forgot to mention that for every game, it's either you win a ticket OR you get your face painted. Mine was the worst. Adrian is not in this picture, he was off winning his 10th lantern. -Sigh-

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