Sunday, July 5, 2015

Circle-Jerking

I'm a big fan of anime and one of the tropes or cliches of many of these animated series that target teens and young adults is this spirit of togetherness.

A lot of cute anime characters often say, teary-eyed with appreciation, "Minna..." which means "Everyone..." as they build a community and carve out a place for themselves in this group of people. These are concerns of a juvenile nature, of teenagers and younger people.

It is also the basis of political parties and the key to corporate and business achievements. This finding a place for yourself amid a crowd of people you call your own.

I see all this, and all I can think about is this: weakness.

You see, having a group of people around you and depending on them could also result in extremely bad things. The group, in an interest of survival, could rabidly defend its members, regardless of what they are defending. The individual ego is fortified by the group ego and individual common sense is often forfeited just for the strengthening of the image of the group.

I do not believe in families or groups. I recognise the benefits of separate entities pooling resources together to achieve a greater goal, but I do not subscribe to tribalism or circle-jerking. You know what a circle-jerk is? It's when all members of a group defends the actions of each other with no self-reflection or fairness. It is when false praise is heaped on each other just because one is in the same group.

Not to say I favour betrayals, which is to me the number one crime that can be committed by any human, but I believe that self-reflection and discarding the ego as well as image - both individual and as a group - to be vital in self-improvement.

In order to attain peace, one must embrace the truth. There is no truth in shallow circle-jerking groups.

I am not denying its power - whole nations are founded on circle-jerking as do profitable companies. It is simply something I personally do not prefer, as with all lies, it carries with it its own seed of destruction.

With lies, there can never be true happiness, which is a situation without want; an absence of want. Circle-jerking is founded on very strong desires - the desire to belong.

There can never be true happiness in circle-jerking each other.


Saturday, June 27, 2015

Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?

I took a five day vacation, around three days off in total. Made sure I did enough work to fill up my own self-imposed quota while I was gone.

I needed the vacation. I developed anxiety issues in recent months and that manifested in several ways. The most damaging of which I began smoking again. I stole a few cigarettes here and there until I was smoking maybe four sticks a day.

A far cry from four packs a day, but I was frustrated that I got back to my old stressed out days.

See, just before my heart attack last year, I was in a state of bliss. I was running a consultancy business that could be my endgame. I needed to make around RM2 to 4 million and then retire before I was 40.

Things start to go wrong, but like any gambler, you double down, hoping to make good on some losses. It got so bad that I had my cardiac event. I had four risk factors through the roof - smoking four packs a day, eating whatever, whenever, and a high-stress job. The fourth is genetics - both sides of my family suffer from critical illnesses though one or several heart attacks and/or strokes never took any of us out. My family members are extremely hard to kill.

Anyway, I was bothered by the fact that I lost that bliss I enjoyed before the heart attack. My calmness was shattered. I began to allow myself to be affected by idiots again, by liars and pretenders. Motherfuckers all of them. Not worth a single hair on my ass.

Back home, my parents' situations continue to worsen. There is nothing more I can do for them in order to improve their being and their experience of the world, and I hated accepting that.

So I went to the Source of All Power. I went to Thailand, where I originally found my peace. I wanted to retrace my steps and to remember what it was all about.

And so I went.

Five days there, and no less than four different people on four separate occasions told me the same thing, "Slowly."

Apparently, even while sitting down quietly and waiting, my energy was one of anxious anticipation. See, I like being smarter than everyone else, and to me, being smarter meant I could anticipate any and all moves, all the time, every time.

I run countless continuous simulations inside my head on how things will unfold. This is extremely useful at work, but I had begun incorporating it into my personal being and this easily becomes toxic.

Whenever you anticipate the outcomes of any situation, you will flag all the bad ones as well. In fact, you will focus more on the bad possibilities and come up with plans and contingencies for each separate bad possibility.

I have always been extremely lucky, but I am also never wrong whenever I anticipate the evil in humanity. I understand the evil that lurks in the hearts of men. And women. And things.

So anyway, I was in Thailand and away from everyone. I couldn't find my copy of A New Earth so I brought Eckhart Tolle's other book - The Power of Now. This happens to be exactly the book I needed to read. In fact, if I could sum up my trip, it would be that I got exactly what I needed at exactly the right time. I felt spoiled because I got everything I asked for. Everything.

From the time I arrived, I met exactly the right people telling me the exact information I needed at the time. For example, I needed to get on a bus to Pattaya. A tour lady hailed me to the side and asked me whether I was going to Pattaya on a bus and if I wanted a taxi to go to the bus station. As a tour lady, I thought she was going to sell me one of her tour packages, but she just gave me good advice and good direction. "There are two bus stations - Morchit and Ekkamai. Morchit is closer to Don Mueang. Don't take airport taxi. Take meter taxi."

Every step of the way, I was given valid intel and useful information. This was a refreshing change from Malaysia where I constantly have to navigate one pile of bullshit after another. People lie a lot here, but during my vacation, there was no need for any of them to lie and even when some do, I was not affected by the lies at all.

The difference is energy. There is a desperation here, in Malaysia, and there is a quiet calm in Thailand. I don't know why.

In offices, people build forts out of cubicles and then they either hold a siege or believe themselves to be under siege. Alliances are made, and broken. The backstabbing, back-biting and blood-letting is silly because none of them are fighting for RM42 billion or even a RM42,000/month salary. It's pathetic and insulting. A lot of Malaysians do not live in gratitude. Tak sedar dek untung, cakap orang Melayu.

Meanwhile, in some of the seedier underbellies of global prostitution, there are people whose jobs it is to suck dicks every day. Their daily drama is 'can I suck enough dicks today to put food on the table?' and they're still very calm and happy.

We have it good. We have food, relatively fast internet (though Thailand's broadband is cheaper and more or less the same as ours, from one consumer's perspective), cheap clothes and adequate shelter.

This does not mean we should be thankful to politicians, who remain the one blight on humanity. Politicians are parasites and should be dealt with accordingly. Why would anyone want to honour people whose job it is to lie to you everyday? Politicians are liars and we should move beyond them by not giving them any focus whatsoever. If we listen to politicians, I assure you we will start killing each other in whatever name is trendy at the time.

Thailand and other countries such as Indonesia do not give a fuck about politicians in the sense that no matter who is in power, it's mostly business as usual. Indonesia does not have a Finas and their movie industry is arguably churning out better films. Thailand's tourism industry is still running strong despite massive changes in Government. In fact, numbers have only grown over the past 12 years despite political instability.

We Malaysians cannot give so much power to politicians and political parties to decide and do everything for us that when they fall - AND THEY WILL ALL FUCKING FALL - all our industries will also shatter and the nation would crumble to the ground.

We should be independent of politicians and politics. Fuck them. Fuck them to hell.

Anyway, I managed to exhale and reset everything. As I began to see things from the perspective of the now and not the past or the future, I began to relax again.

One of the things that affected me with my anxiety was an outbreak of pompholyx on my hand. Pompholyx is a type of eczema that only affects the extremities such as fingers and toes. It got better and tonight, my hand is completely healed.

Evil people will continue to be evil and petty. I don't have to deal with their bullshit in any way shape or form. Fuck them and their entire family.

Shifting my focus from the future to the present solves my anxiety issues. The future does not happen except as the present, and rather than a million different possibilities, there is only one reality, one outcome, and it is always now.

Doesn't mean I have stopped planning or anticipating things, but I have separated my thinking self and my real self. I have the Greatest Mind of the 21st Century, but I am not my mind. This separation is vital in order to stay sane.

There are other things, of course, but I am taking care of myself first and ensuring my mental and emotional health are as good as my physical health. I've stopped smoking again and I hope this time it sticks.


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Fumes

It's been 10 months since I had a break. Then the whole heart attack thing happened and I've been on a mission of recovery ever since. My father took a turn for the worse and is now very, very angry. My mother is not doing so well either.

I am physically, mentally and emotionally drained. Been running on fumes for the past year. I remember all the high hopes and broken promises and despair that led to my severe health crisis.

I'm not really angry at having a heart attack at 34. First of all, I have dropped 21kg and am now very thin and sexy. I can fuck half of KL if I wanted to, but I'm way too busy.

I could have done a half-assed job at work, but I just couldn't. I had to drive myself to the brink and the past few weeks, I've been stepping on the gas a bit too much. I'm doing it all alone, not like I have a bunch of slaves or anything. But this is a better way of doing it. Other people can't be trusted. Best to go at it alone for as much as you can.

And yet last weekend I felt re-energised with the comics thing. Maple Comics - the company I started with Roy - has published three titles in six months and is on track to release six to seven titles this year.

If I could choose to do just one thing, I'd love to do Maple Comics full time. We have total control over things and if there are fuck ups, it's ours. We own it, good and bad. We do not have to answer for other people's shit.

Last weekend, I was on the panel at Comics Arts Fest KL. I will be on the panel again for Cooler Lumpur this weekend.

After that, I'm going for a break. Taking some days off. I'll be back later. Hopefully rejuvenated and resurrected.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Negativitity and Sucking Dicks

Just saw Another Country - a play showcasing Malaysian and Singaporean works and performers. Review coming out in The Malaysian Reserve early next week. Won't say much but it is a sign of a great play that it gets me thinking.

For some reason, the past few months, I have been meeting Malaysians who have spent some time in the States. Their observations and message are consistent. Why are Malaysians so negative?

I immediately felt responsible, partly because everything is about me but largely due to the fact that I am such a great person who feels responsible all the time. I also felt guilty because I single-handedly made being cynical cool.

I mean, who can deny the large social impact I have had on Malaysia? Hordes of Malaysians suck my dick every day. I am the iconoclastic icon, the thought-leader, the forerunner, the Greatest Mind of the 21st Century.

For over 12 years, I made being cynical cool, when all this country ever needed was to appreciate what we already have and enjoy. And we all know, before I arrived 12 years ago, all Malaysians were very positive people cooing about our stupid buildings and stable economy. After me, everybody was like, "Meh" to everything.

I fear I have done all of you a great wrong.Things are not so bad here.

In my travels, I have met people whose job is to literally suck dicks every day. Fat dicks, thin dicks, long dicks, short dicks. Sweet dicks, sour dicks, sweet and sour dicks, salty dicks, spicy dicks, dicks with too much umami and cheese or whatever. Dicks dicks dicks. When you talk to these people, and you usually only hear "Mrrf Mrrf Glug glug glug" cause they're sucking dicks most of the time, you get the sense that it's not so bad here, in Malaysia, where you can make even better money sucking dicks. You only even have to suck only one dick a day instead of like, 300.

Things SEEM bad because we are a molly-coddled nation whose people are so used to having politicians do everything for us. We asked these politicians to take away anything and everything offensive from us, to uphold our laws and keep us safe, to tell us what is right and what is wrong. In return, we allow them to take our money. Most of our money.

And yet, even with all this, I sincerely do not believe that we can attribute all our successes or blame all our failures on politicians. This is lazy. This is avoiding responsibility. This is giving away too much power to politicians.

Politicians are the worst of us. They rise from a pool of the most desperate, deformed, mentally-handicapped and morally-bankrupt. And yet we expect them to do anything?

I believe that all of our successes and failures are our own. Datuk Nicol David became a dominant force in world squash not because of politicians, but in spite of them. Datuk Lat became an institution not because he had to kowtow to politicians - it was the other way around. He became such an institution that no one dared to mess with him. Name one single politician who can fight Malaysia's most talented people.

Blaming others simply give up power over ourselves to idiots. We all have more control over ourselves and our environment than we dare to admit. Because admitting it is accepting responsibility and our greatest sin is refusing to be accountable.

And what is so dangerous to own up to everything you've done - both good and bad?

So that others would not hate us? So that others would love us? Weak. Pathetic.

And so I find myself agreeing with these Malaysians who see more than I have. I have not set foot outside of South East Asia nor do I desire to do so. I'm okay with Malaysia and the occasional trip to Thailand to rejuvenate my flagging spirits.

I think they have a point. We are being too negative. Not to say that we should start being delusional or let our guard down, especially with politicians. I'm just saying, enough with the negativity. I'm tired. Just relax.

Otherwise, there is only one way this will play out. Come 2018, we might have blood on the streets, instigated by politicians who fight for the power to decide everything for us. I hope I'm wrong, but you see, I'm always right.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Odds and Ends

Woke up early today as I have a doctor's appointment in the morning. Noticed I had passed the million visitors mark for this blog, after deleting it the third or maybe fourth time. Which means, realistically, this could be the second or third million hits.

Over, I dunno, 11 years? 12?

Those journalists who once told me that this Internet thing is a fad and that yes, they've seen similar fads come and go (like Smell-O-Vision, perhaps?), that it will soon die off in 2004 and people would go back to buying newspapers are now plying their trade at Internet portals.

If there is a literal interpretation of eating one's words, I guess that would be it.

In any case, things keep on changing. Internet media is a nebulous, ephemeral thing. People keep on repeating nomadic patterns. The numbers shift from one thing to another. Now, that is a fad behaviour.

Myspace and Facebook are interesting examples. Myspace died quite properly some hundreds of cyber years ago. Facebook didn't. Or haven't. Facebook is no longer sexy, of course, but the late adapters number more than the attention-deficit Xs and Ys.

While the cool and hip leftist-leaning urbanites moved their overpriced coffee pictures to Twitter and now Instagram, the majority who just discovered broadband Internet access also stumbled upon Facebook.

The bulk of the BN audience is on Facebook, which remains their most effective platform. Twitter was won over by seemingly endless bots, as demonstrated by the ill-fated and easily-discovered bot-fuelled 3 million tweets campaign one Merdeka Day.

I sent a message to one of the bots, that were tweeting the same message even though sporting the Twitter equivalent of Osman, Muthusamy and Lai Kok Seng multi-ethnic Twitter handles. I told them, "We come in peace and look forward to serving our machine overlords."

While numerous Opposition agents try to convince me - someone they marked as Government-friendly, though I'm nothing of the sort - that Twitter is no longer cool, I understand it still has a role to play in the coming election. The big one. The one BN is supposed to lose due to their own stupidity.

And yes, BN as a political party has played the cyberwars quite stupidly. Their tactics are easily uncovered and the stance or direction - when they have one - has always been arrogant and standoffish.

There are people and brands who succeeded by being arrogant and brusque online, myself included. There is a reason why and how it is done that way. Mostly due to the pursuit of vaginas. It is not one would expect from people begging for your votes to stay in power and does not inspire any confidence or endearment whatsoever.

When the giant BN cyber machineries fall and fail, and they will fall hard and fail catastrophically, I hope somebody notes the numbers. Would be fun, dissecting just how much they royally fucked up.

So where does that leave blogs? I wrote in 2008, after the GE that blogs are done and dusted. That bloggers are now inconsequential. Those who believe otherwise are delusional.

Sure, there is still a role for blogs to play as a platform. But lose the tired idea that personalities drive blogs. Nobody cares anymore. Post-lonelygirl15, nobody really believes in the interesting personality online. And Lonelygirl15 was a thing - a scandal - before even the big Malaysian blog boom.

Blogs are sites. Sites are sources of information. Sites are tools. Blogs, sites, FB pages have all blended under the generic 'Internet Tools' banner.

Nobody cares who you are, unless you are DrM. The rest care about WHAT they get from this... tool. Naked pictures? Weather forecasts?

The age of the thought-leaders are over around seven years ago. You have mob-leaders now and at the post-peak point of the Information Age, we will have hordes of the most mis-informed crowds going at it with each other. All shouting, non-listening, hordes of idiots flaming online. This is the future? This is today.

The future exists in tangible things. I have gone back to working at a newspaper and updating this blog. Why? Because despite everything, I have never done this for money (except the newspaper, TV and movies part) or attention or fame. I do it because I want to. I rather enjoy it.

Few things give me greater pleasure than reading my own writing and admiring how great and intelligent I am.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Malaysia Airlines Website - The Hell is This?

Planning a trip, so I checked the prices of airfare and decided even though Malaysia Airlines' tickets cost around a hundred ringgit more or more than a hundred ringgit than Air Asia, I wanted to buy one.

The reason is logistics. I'm going to Bangkok sometime in the near future, so I wanted to go to Suvarnabhumi airport as it is closer to where I want to go. A taxi ride from Suvarnabhumi is around RM110 or I can take a bus for RM15. A taxi ride from Don Mueang Airport - basically the KLIA 2 of Bangkok - would be RM160. Or I can take a shuttle to Suvarnabhumi from Don Mueang or take a taxi to a bus station before I take a bus to where I want to go.

Malaysia Airlines land in Suvarnabhumi while Air Asia lands in Don Mueang. So to keep things simple and clean, I thought I'd take Malaysia Airlines and make up for the difference in fares with land transportation by taking the bus.

So I went and filled in whatever info on their website - a website I had problems with in the past for refusing to take my money - and it went crazy. Again.

Here's a screencap:



I tried the website again and again for maybe a total of an hour, over a few hours. Same error message.

I tried reloading, restarting the whole thing, and nada. Nope. Zilch.

So anyway, I decided to take things to the real world. I went and took a cab, paying RM15 to KL Sentral and plonked my ass down in front of the Malaysia Airlines counter to buy the goddamned ticket. Manually.

I haven't bought a plane ticket this way since... ever. I have never done this.

So keeping my rant and whining to a minimum, I told the nice counter person I wanted tickets to such and such destination, at such and such dates and time. The price quoted to me on the website was RM577 and I wanted the same price or slightly higher.

Upon a cursory check, the price she could give me was RM700++. Later, there was an improved offer of RM600++.

No can do, man. I decided to just fuck it, went home (after paying RM15 for another cab ride) and bought an Air Asia ticket. Air Asia website booked my flight, took my money in 5 minutes, from start to end.

See, the problems with Malaysia Airlines are many and varied. I have no interest whatsoever in their corporate tussle, the share swap fiasco, whatever, man. I don't give a flying fuck.

But this is basic elementary stuff here. I have a website selling comic books to people and if we find an error, that shit gets fixed within a few days - hours if we had nothing to do or not at our jobs.

For a massive company to fuck up their website on three separate occasions when a customer is practically trying to throw money at them is just plain stupid. This is user experience. This is website functionality. This is fucking bullshit.

The fact that I couldn't use the website is one thing - a major thing. Not having the same price for the ticket at the counter is also insane. It's not like Malaysia Airlines is the only game in town. Hell, there's KLM and Jetstar with their shit on offer as well as Air Asia.

The previous problems I had was when I tried to pay Malaysia Airlines using their website and the damned thing wouldn't take my money. It just wouldn't. Straight up wouldn't take my hard earned cash I wanted to throw at them like a hooker in a strip club.

This latest shit is the third time something stupid happened to me while using the Malaysia Airlines website.

I don't know how many other people faced the same problem or how much money is lost simply because the website sucks balls.

I don't know who's in charge up there at Malaysia Airlines, and I don't give a fuck. White guy, yellow guy, brown guy. Whatever. You fix the website, dude.

Just for fucks, I will go to the website again several months from now or maybe next year to book another flight. It better be ready to take my money.

I mean, come on!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Dogs of War

"I am his Highness' dog at Kew. Pray tell me, sir - whose dog are you?" - Alexander Pope, on the collar of a dog.

People always want something from you. Sometimes, it is something innocent, like a smile, or some company. Most of the time, though, it is darker things. Money, power, control, a means to feed their ego.

I am constantly attuned to the darkness in human hearts. I have gazed on their evil and the blackness void that is their soul for far too long that I don't shy away from it anymore.

Some... wiser men have advised me that I was being paranoid, that people are not that evil. These wise men kept on getting screwed over and sabotaged by the evil people they dared to trust.

And yet, the biggest mistake would be to allow yourself to be consumed by the darkness. These evil things wish to make a dog of you, so you make a dog of them.

Lay traps. And then lie in wait. Of course, there are no traps. I simply say that to mess with the evil people. I am not that capable. My connections don't run that deep or go that high.

Nope. The only recourse is to stop playing.

The world dances to whatever tune you tell it to. Our minds hold such power in freedom. I had strings but now I'm free. There are no strings on me.

The Madness of Crowds


Caption: PICTURE IS UNRELATED

I need a vacation. Been a hectic week and it doesn't seem to clear at all next week.

For some reason, I unwisely filled up my schedule last week with lots of assignments. I wanted to do more for the company where I currently ply my trade.

Meanwhile, I just had the urge to start something new. So I started a crowd-funding website for poor people undergoing treatment - currently at proposal stage, touched base with many international comics publishers (one, two, many), hoping to grab some titles and publish it here, started selling the third title under Maple Comics - Taubat Si Tanggang, initiated some comics projects, said yes to a book project and started consulting for something.

I used to be able to do more than this. At one point, I had 10 projects running at the same time. My current health means this is my limit. I have reached a stage in my life when I would need a team to do everything.

I didn't feel the energy drain until I faced so many people at the KL International Book Fair today. I don't like being around many people. My communication is personalised, targeted, focused. I don't do so well when it comes to so many faces. I feel like I have to morph and shift every time I talk to a different person.

I understand that different people communicate in different ways and so they would need different forms of communication. Every time I talk to people, I automatically gauge their disposition, level of knowledge, exposure, and the really crazy social dynamics.

When you talk to a person in a crowd, how they respond to any given information or stimulus depends on their own personality and how they relate to the others around them. As I do my own assessment, so would they. What they say and how they react depends very much on how they anticipate others would react if they say this or that.

I do a short-hand for this with simulations. I imagine myself to be in their shoes, and then try to feel and think how they would.

For example, when you approach someone within a crowd of, say, four. You ask him or her, "Where is the toilet?". Now, he/she would be mindful of the other three. How he/she responds depends very much on what kind of outcome he/she desires from the group. There is also his/her own level of knowledge - whether or not he/she knows where the toilet is.

Social dynamics is by far the most maddening and complex and ultimately determinant component. If he/she were to simply be helpful, it could mean that he/she wishes for the group or the audience to think of her in a certain way. Same goes with mocking the person asking for the info. If her/his group he/she belongs to wishes to share in a tribal/herd bonding by nominating a common enemy or target of scorn, there are several ways this could go down.

I simulate all of this in my head like how people divide the bill at restaurants. It is extremely taxing and exhausting to do more than five simulations at the same time. Imagine this, times a few hundred or a few thousand. Because when I see a sea of faces, I don't see a sea of faces. I see many different individuals.

In a crowd, I create stories for each one. I imagine each person going home, sitting alone on the toilet or in their bedroom, and when all the doors and windows are closed, what do they think about? How would they think?

So when facing lots of people, I get lost in simulations.

Over the years, I have developed coping mechanisms. I realise that I do this mainly because of insecurities about my intelligence. I feel the compulsion to do it because it makes me feel smart, which I don't need. Another reason is paranoia and the desire to control variables in my environment. People are the biggest variables. Without people, a stadium is just a building. Filled with people, it is a bowl filled with emotion, it is an event.

Still - it can be very unhealthy and this weekend, I already feel the strain.

However, these are extremely useful tools when analysing group dynamics, relationships and correlations.

The trick is - balance and automation. Nowadays, I run on autopilot with simulations and I pick and choose which analysis I need to do. Otherwise, I'd be a schizophrenic within months.

For the rest, I would just have to accept and let go. I'd have to accept that humans will be humans, with their silly little games and silly politics even among themselves. And let go, which is still the most difficult thing to learn.

Anyway, knowing is half the battle. Coooobraaaa!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

The Initiative

Today was a busy day. I went to three places all over town. I even fell asleep in the cab.I used to be able to go to six places and then still have energy to party. It is clear to me that my powers have waned.

And so, as I sat down and listened to a spoken book review at a launch, something clicked inside me and I decided to resurrect yet another save the world project.

Months ago, I conceived an idea to do a Kickstartr-like website to crowd-fund medical treatment for poor people who can't afford it.

Two things happened to make me see this is a need in today's world. First, when I was warded last August, there was a guy who needed an angioplasty. The cost is around RM10,000. He  received RM5,000 from the Welfare Department and was expected to fork out the rest.

He had no insurance, no visible means of income, no sukuk or whatever the fuck. If he didn't have the money, he might have to just walk it off.

Meanwhile, I see a lot of people sharing Facebook postings and Twitter posters on this or that patient requiring financial aid. I always doubt these things and I always wonder whether they are cons. Is there any way of knowing, for sure?

SO.

I decided that the best way is to institutionalise these calls for aid. All funds MUST be channeled through the hospital or a foundation. The cases must be reviewed by the hospital and the Welfare Department for fears of paying for some rich guy pretending to be poor's health bills. Everything must be legit and transparent.

I'm putting together a proposal to get the hospital on board - so far I have people inside who can send it through the proper channels. What I need right now is costing - I need to find out how much the website will cost.

After the platform details are sorted, we need to look at continuous implementation. The hospital should take ownership of this. There has to be synergy between the hospital, the Welfare Department and volunteers.

This initiative cannot work without volunteers. We'd need people to take pictures, write the cases on the websites and then publish them on the website.

I already have the online spread thing figured out, more or less.

But now, of utmost importance, is I need to know how much the platform is going to cost. I need to speak to coders and web designers keen to do a charity project. Who wants to listen to my pitch?


Rapid Psychosis

"Chicks really dig people with a lot of mental problems," said a friend. "You're a mess. That's very hot."

I was like, really? I mean, I'm not a mess, psychologically. My awareness of my mental state and other people's mental conditions means it is very difficult for me to feel extreme sadness or be very happy with people.

I understand that ultimately, all that I feel are caused by my own self. This dulls any emotion, except anger and frustration.

My father has only two emotions - angry and angrier. I am fast becoming like him, and I fear if I live long enough, I would know extreme frustration.

But seriously - chicks dig psychosis? I do not tolerate lying, but maybe highlighting some insecurities and potential problems would position me as a more attractive prospect. Of course, the moody and brooding Vincent Valentine, Kyo the Samurai and Gray Fullbuster all have mental problems and they are chick magnets.

For example, I am extremely insecure about my intelligence. A quick assessment at my childhood, growing up as the fat kid made me struggle with the stereotype of the stupid fat kid. Meanwhile, in my household, the attribute that is most coveted is intelligence, outstripping wisdom, strength, defence, magic power, agility, or any other attribute.

Would my insecurities be much more alluring than my strengths and happiness? Because as it is right now, I am quite happy. I don't go skipping around or prancing about in tights or anything, but I am quite sated. Even my heart disease means I will not live for very long - and I loathe living a long life.

I want to die when I should. Around 40-50 or so.

Anyway, long story short, I shared my insecurities and my inability to see anything other than shallowness in human interaction. Because only I see the real truth, and that is a burden rather than a gift.

And so I highlighted my insecurities. These are real - I don't believe in lying. I just omitted the fact that I am fully aware of myself and my insecurities.

"What the fuck?" said the girl.

"Well, you're supposed to fix me."

"I won't fix people," she said.

And so it ends. My insecurities are worthless. Probably because I am not that insecure since I have accepted them long ago.

Perhaps I should be sadder. But I am not. It's really difficult to brood when all my current day-to-day problems are not that dire and all the drama I face are more mellow and inconsequential than any of the stuff I faced before.

I think I'll just enjoy being happy.


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Hell and Back

So I went back to my hometown. Had to do some family stuff.

One of them is to see my father. His condition is deteriorating, though he remains an obstinate old man. I wonder, though, how would I turn out when I'm older?

I hope I have the strength to let go of stuff when the time comes.


Monday, April 6, 2015

The Long Intermission

So much has happened in the past few weeks.

I was recommended for another angioplasty, where they put balloons in my heart and then reinforce the damn thing with wires but I got a second opinion from a Wind Elemental Doctor and he told me I shouldn't get it.

Angioplasties have risks - you could die during one due to ruptured arteries or have visible boners that would scare off hot nurses - and there is no clear benefit for me to spend around 22K on the procedure. I have insurance, of course, but I'm saving that in case I come down with something worse.

So, I decided not to. I'm sure the doctors who advised me to get another angioplasty believed that I could benefit from it, but I will go with the recommendation of the second doctor.

I am off Warfarin - the fucking rat poison - so I can now eat green leafy vegetables again, as well as cranberries and soy products. I'm taking my supplements and I find I have more energy at times. Sometimes I do feel fatigued - I often fall asleep in car rides.

I have maintained my weight loss but I need to step it up to lose a further 10kg. I was considering hard drugs but I guess a high fibre diet will do.

Work is progressing and I hope to move forward with some things in April.

Meanwhile, Maple Comics is growing from strength to strength. I spent some time with nerds and found them to be filled with either neutral or good energy. Wait till you get into the corporate world, kids - it will crush your soul!

I am now planning a card game to go with the comics we're publishing. I hope it will be popular and I can focus on selling comics and cards. It will take a year or two to design the mechanics and print the cards and organise tournaments.

Back home in Kuantan, my father's condition is deteriorating. I hope he doesn't suffer, but the old man is tough and he will always decide whether he suffers or not, on his own. He defied science for over 30 years and he continues to beat the odds. Doctors told him he had a few years to live around 34 years ago and he's still alive.

He had four strokes and he's still kicking. The men in my family are extremely hard to kill.

I've also been asked to read the doa for a family event back home. Leaving for that middle of this week. Yeah, I'm THAT old now. I get to do old men stuff, like lead prayers or some shit.

More girls would be sucking my dick if I turned religious, but I will die as I lived - real to the end. I'm not religious at all and I find all religions to be fascinating bunch of stories and tales.

Some people tried to dangle stuff in front of me. Pussy, money, power, position. I find no desire in having any of the things offered. I said no so many times these past few weeks.

What I want, I already have. Freedom. Time. A bunch of real friends.

I don't need much. Just want to pay my bills and live a quiet life, waiting for death. I don't need to prove myself to anyone or anything because what needs to be proven already has.

I am what I am. Perfect. Flawed. Whatever. I no longer feel the need to convince anyone of anything. You are all stupid anyway. In my short life, I have only ever met two guys who are smarter than me. One of them is myself and the other is not you.

So fucking busy these days. My illness is currently manageable and I hope to slowly push forward and get to the level I was before. I need to be able to do 400%, and then relax. Because the point of going 400% capacity is so I would no longer have to.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Comics N Toys Geek Fest 2015

So last weekend, I was at the Comics and Toys Geek Fest 2015 at Jaya Shopping Center.

Had a blast. Maple Comics sold a bunch of comics (we now have enough to print bags and receipts by June), but we were really there for two other things:

1. Awareness

- Need to get the brand name out, man! This is to get more submissions from Malaysian artists and to engage the public in what we do. The more our comics get noticed, the better it will be.

2. Connecting with artists

- We ALWAYS, ALWAYS need more artists working on projects. Keeps the fire burning and ensures a steady supply line. Right now, we have between 10-20 projects in progress. We don't know which ones will get finished first, if any, and we'd love to initiate more.

What I didn't count on was the fact that there are so many awesome hoomans at the thing. I live in a very serious and whiny corporate world of intrigue and espionage, with murder around every corner. So it was nice to be surrounded by young people who had my enthusiasm 16 years ago.

Now I'm the old man, talking about shit I had to go through. "Back in my day, CF was at Dewan MCA, man! And it was just a few tables with thin tablecloths. People come, buy shit and then leave. PATHETIC! And look at it now - a large marketing behemoth with whatever."

Nobody gave a shit about politics or whatever. They just made lewd, not-so-funny jokes and puns about lightsabers being an analogy for dicks. It was dumb and spectacular at the same time.

Also met some cute cosplayers and volunteers. I'd probably take maybe two of them out for dinner.

Anyway, it was a refreshing change from corporate whatever and hospitals I've been to the past several months.
Thanks to all the organisers, Andrew Tan, Batcave, Lil' Monsters, Kalleon (Kaleon?) Rahan, Heng Kok, all the volunteers, etc, etc and whoever I forgot to mention.


Monday, March 23, 2015

Second Opinions and CTGF 2015

I spent the weekend at the Comics N Toys Geek Fest 2015, Jaya Shopping Center. It was a blast as I relaxed and sold some comics. Made some friends and generally experienced the robust geek culture. A refreshing change to the corporate world and the multi-layered bleeding edge of communications consultancy.

Previously, in last week's whatever, I saw the cardiologist who handles my follow-up checks. He recommended I get another angioplasty, scheduled tomorrow (Tuesday).

Since then, I have consulted three other doctors and today have made the decision not to go for angio. The procedure will clear the vessel to a part of my heart that is already dead - the part that cares for any human. An angioplasty would carry its own risks and since the benefits are iffy at best, I was advised not to take it, for fear of complications or risks that could lead to my death or whatever.

The good news is that my cardiologist told me I could stop taking Warfarin. Yes! This means I can eat vegetables again. Green leafy vegetables, soy products, cranberries, and all sorts of berries... as soon as the meds clear out of my system, which is probably a week or two from now.

I also met some very smart people who suggested that the limitations I have been experiencing with my body after the heart attack could have been psychological. The opinion is unqualified, of course, but merits some digging into. I will see a psychologist this week for a rudimentary, informal, unofficial diagnosis.

I found that after the heart attack, I have less energy. Where in the past, I could work till 4am, sleep for two hours then wake up, do a proposal and present by 9am, nowadays I get tired at 6pm. I was once lightheaded at 4pm, feeling almost faint.

It could be a combination of my new diet - limited in high-calorie foodstuff, my intense exercise regime and my heart's reduced capacity. I also feel cold nowadays. Previously, it takes a lot to do that as I was always warm - perfect for baking bread.

What it means is I was operating at half-capacity all this while. In the past, I could go to 400% but now, a mere 50%, which is pathetic. Still better than everyone else, but if you want to commit to several different projects at the same time, you'd need to step into high gear now and again.

I need more info on that, so no use thinking about it now.

Anyway, will do a proper post on CTGF later. Right now, I have to inform my bosses that I won't be going for the procedure and will be in the office tomorrow.




Monday, March 9, 2015

Happy Birthday To Me

There. It's after 12. I survived my 35th birthday.

I'm still alive, though around six months ago, that was an iffy proposition. Some might think I'm being overly dramatic, so fuck you. I don't give a fuck.

Almost six months ago, I was lucky to be alive after a heart attack that took 1/3 of my heart. That part is dead and will never recover. So no, you can't really recover from a heart attack. Not really. You learn to lie with it, cope with it. Try to teach your body to compensate for the reduced ability.

I am thankful for the heart attack as I have benefited from it in several ways.

First, I don't want to live that long. This illness shortened my life span considerably and I am now on track to die in my 40s, if not earlier. I have been preparing for death since I was 17 and I know what I really don't want in life - to be old and suffer the indignity of trying to make it to the toilet in time.

I have been insecure about my intelligence and memory since I was a very young person. If I were to still be alive at say, 70++, I am not sure whether I would have full control of my faculties.

Some people cling desperately to life as much as they cling desperately to anything. Whatever, man. I don't give a fuck. I believe that life is to be lived during our lifetime, no more, no less. When it's my time to go, it's my time to go.

I am scared of certain illnesses and conditions such as paralysis, dementia, Alzheimer's, Huntington's (which I don't have, I think. Thank God), Gehrig's disease, sarcoidosis and a bunch of other things. Death is not the least desirable outcome.

If I were to die in the coming months, know that I am happy to pass on before I get too old or sick to see existence as other than suffering.

I have stayed away from relationships and family precisely so that I don't have anything anchoring me to this world. And at the end of everything, I want my freedom.

Another thing the heart attack brought me was this clear realisation that I can discard people and things from my life. The liars, abusers, the hollow people - gone. Things that give me grief or are not my responsibility in the first place, things that are not my mess - gone. Thank you, or fuck you, but goodbye one and the same.

I have a renewed appreciation for time. I don't want to waste time on frivolous things or frivolous people. If you are stupid, hollow, delusional or simply annoying to me, take yourself - your whole entire stupid being - and shove it up your own asshole.

I'm streamlining my life for ease of passage. Like an intestine-friendly piece of turd that slides right out of the shithole and into the afterlife that is a flush down the hell of plumbing.


Sunday, February 22, 2015

Messiah Complex: Great Expectations

I went back to Kuantan for CNY and was immediately stressed out. After a mere six hours, I blew up.

I saw my father in his state. He's survived a number of strokes and is now more or less wheelchair-bound. He's frustrated and I can relate to that. I understand. His condition puts enormous pressure on my mother and other family members.

At its core, I can totally relate to my father's frustration. Even at my relatively young age, I can only do so much. And in recent months, I have witnessed some of my big plans laid waste and some of my great expectations come to dust.

I am no longer an important man. In fact, I was never an important man. I am nothing, really, and though I understand that and all its implications, I still had trouble accepting it.

I still have a superhero complex and with my illness, I can't do what I did before, how I did it. Work myself to death till miracles start coming out of my ass. Seriously. The past 12 years of working resulted in many results that to me were probably pure dumb luck, in hindsight.

I have reached the top of certain disciplines and have managed achievements some could only dream of or lie in their resumes. But those things are the past. The present is much more modest. I do not hold the fate of millions on my shoulders and nothing I do really matters.

I did not realise how great this is. I mean, I don't want to be responsible for that shit. Fuck that, man. I'm happy being inconsequential and taking care of small things within my limited realm. If some fuckers were to betray me or backstab me, the stakes are very low and nobody's going to die. Nations will not crumble due to a tiny mistake I do, and that's a relief.

In fact, I have lived a charmed life and continue to be extremely lucky. There are people who have been very kind to me and rather than focus on backstabbers and people who don't know they're heading towards destruction, I would much rather spend my limited time left on this earth with those who matter.

Seeing my father struggle at the twilight of his life really stressed me out, but I understand that there is not much I can do for him. I can't save him, I can't fix him. I can't even reprogramme or control what happens or the people around him.

I can only listen to his grouses and stories. I told him about my condition in stark, brutal honesty - how according to some studies, I have only a few years left to live, but the jury's out with my new lifestyle I adopted in response. If I had known he would be lucid enough during this trip, I would not have been so direct.

He was concerned and even offered me some money to cover for my medical cost. That's very sweet considering I am paying for his meds every month - it's the least I could do. My father doesn't have enough funds to get him through this time in his life.

My father remains frustrated every day. He can't control his surroundings and his body. He stubbornly refuses to use the wheelchair sometimes and insists on walking (barely being able to do so) and refuses to acknowledge his own illnesses.

I watch him, and I think, selfishly, "Will I suffer through the same ordeal as I get older?" In his position, I would have asked for death. I can only imagine what he goes through.

So, again selfishly, I am so grateful that I have what I have. I am grateful that I don't have to deal with all the bullshit I had to deal with and the people I had to deal with last time. Nowadays, I only do things I want to do and as soon as I allow myself to do that, the universe also follows suit.

I am nothing, and in this nothingness, I am glad and happy.

So yeah, I believe going through all that stress - intense pressure - at home with my family, seems necessary. Especially now that I'm back in KL, on my primum mobil.


Sunday, February 8, 2015

Mortal Kombat!

Fuck, man. I was sick for two whole fucking weeks.

The flu got me the first week, but I kept on going for assignments anyway. My boss told me to stay home, but I didn't.

On Thaipusam, I decided to go to the gym. I thought I could bully the tail end of the flu by working out and doing what I always do to fight off a flu - ignoring it.

It used to be, I would recover from a flu in a matter of hours. This time, though, after I completed a hellish workout session, I got even worse. I'm too old for this shit.

I went home and my temperature just shot up. I was worried that I got dengue, the remnants of a PSA on RTM lingered in my mind. Fever that comes and goes, for longer than two weeks, and all that.

If I had dengue, it would decrease my platelet count. I'm already on two types of anti-platelets and one anti-coagulant due to my heart condition. Dengue could kill me.

So I went to the hospital and had my blood tested. It wasn't dengue. It's just a flu that my body found difficult to get rid of because I dunno why.

The only thing that worked was lots of rest. I spent two days mostly asleep, and felt better each time. I went through 7 boxes of tissue (225 sheets each) in two weeks. I was - at the peak of my illness - sneezing blood.

Today, I think I don't need those boxes of tissue anymore. So I'm going to work tomorrow. I went to all these assignments and I haven't written the stories yet. I haven't chased after some PR people for photos and shit. I work with stringers now and I need to pass them loads of information.

Work looms like a spectre.

Added to that, I am handling my comic book company and we just got featured in Sunday Mail and The Malay Mail Online, after The Sun and The Edge earlier.

During my flu spell, I was meeting up with artists and stuff, Cause you need a lot of prep work before a comic book can come out.

Good news is, I think I'm ready to go for all these things. I'm gonna go out soon and check out sales of the comics at SACC for Pesta Buku Selangor.

I hope the bloody flu stays away. Like, forever.

Anyway, I think I'm good to go. Bring it on.


Thursday, January 29, 2015

The Fucking Flu and Other Stories.

Finally. I think I'm recovering nicely from the flu that got me last week.

I was ready to go to the hospital because I was sneezing up blood. That's bad considering I'm already on three types of blood thinners - two types of anti-platelets (Plavix and aspirin) and one anti-coagulant (warfarin).

If I had contracted dengue fever, a condition that reduces platelet count, I would have been at risk for brain hemorrhaging or whatever.

The sneezing of blood sounds more dramatic than it really was - basically I was sneezing up phlegm that had some traces of blood in it. Quite a bit, but not dripping with blood. And tonight, the bleeding stopped.

Furthermore, I exhibited none of the symptoms of brain hemorrhaging - no dizzy spells, no headaches, etc.

The flu almost incapacitated me anyway. I treat it like I treat any other flu viruses - I ignored it and I avoided people. When you're infected, you should quarantine yourself.

I didn't stop going for assignments, though I did let up on writing. This week proved to be filled with a variety of events, interviews and other things.

This is the kind of thing you watch out for when you're on some types of dangerous medication. Warfarin was, at one point, rat poison. The six types of meds I'm on for my heart condition meant I have to be extra vigilant and educate myself constantly. I fucking read fucking medical journals.

For example, recently I started eating blue cheese because a study in Norway suggested that blue cheese such as Roquefort, danish blue and soft cheeses such as Camembert have these anti-inflammatory things that are good for the heart.

I just have to ensure the saturated fat doesn't kill me, so everything in moderation, to achieve the desired balance.

Some friends have asked about losing weight and my take on it is simple:

1. Portioning

Regardless of what you eat, you have to control the portions. This requires a lot of self-control. If you don't have it, you're doomed to being fat and sick.

2. Choice

You need to choose the right food. I go for high fibre most of the time. I don't eat fast food or anything too salty, too oily, too sweet or too stupid.

3. Timing

I don't eat past 10pm, unless I did not have dinner on that day, which is rare. I sleep at 12 or so.

And then there's exercise. I couldn't exercise this week because of my flu. Fucking flu.

Anyway, the second comic book by Maple Comics is out and it looks better than I expected.

Two dear friends are getting married this weekend and I have to find their wedding gift tomorrow.

But first, some rest. I need to recuperate from this goddamn flu.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Flu Fighter: Two Crazy Days

So I went for my cardiac stress test yesterday. Previously, I reached level 5 with a METS score of 10.7 which means I can do heavy farming but not deep sea diving. To go for deep sea diving and run really fast, I need to beat level 6.

I went in, and immediately told the doctor and the nurse, "I want to beat level 6 today."

They were like, "Eh?" Cause that's not how it works. But fuck it.

So I went on the thing and they strapped these things to my chest and I beat level 6. Fuck you, level 6.

My METS score is now 13.5. I'm way above average for heart patients and still above average for normal hoo-mans.

I was extremely satisfied with the results and immediately gave myself a blowjob.

It was a good day.

Today, I began to feel sick. My core temperature was rising from morning and I felt a certain dryness in my throat.

The discomfort made me quite pissed off almost the whole day and by night time, I wanted to punch people in the face.

Am not going to the office tomorrow, but will do work at home. I feel sick right now and my nose is runny.

Within these two days, I also begin to get a clearer picture of certain things and certain whatever. And guess what? My instincts are always correct.

I'm so fucking great. Even though I can feel the temperature of my eyeballs, I can safely say I did the right thing and made the right decisions.

Now, if only that physiotherapist would go out with me, when I've recovered from my flu/fever.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Wankathon Hypersigil

Tomorrow I go for a stress test. It's where they hook you up to an EKG thing and make you walk, jog or run on a treadmill.

Come hell or high water, I won't stop until I reach the final level - level 6. Last time I did it, I reached level 5. I thought that was the final level, but nooooo. There's another level. Hope my heart and my leg muscles hold out.

In the gym, I could do 60 minutes cardio on the eliptical, reaching 9km yesterday. Then I usually follow it up with an hour of weight training - usually 100 crunches, bicep curls, tricep whatever and some chest thingies.

My man boobs are all but gone. My stomach does not bulge outward anymore. Well, not that much.

I am also managing my stress better than before the heart attack. I let go of idiots and the stupid things they do, and I put my faith in people who are smart. I don't think I need to correct or show smart people what's what, because if they can't see what I see on top of what they already see, then they are not very smart to begin with. And I don't waste time with idiots.

I don't feel maligned or victimised by life or by other people because I don't allow it to happen. Once you take full responsibility for yourself, there are no excuses and you will do more.

I'm juggling a full time job and two separate businesses. All are coming along well. I wish the physiotherapist would go out on a date with me, but if she doesn't, I'm not gonna cut myself or feel unwanted or sad or whatever.

I feel my age, which is good. I'm 35 years old this year, and I'm too old for the regular retarded bullshit. The devil is in the details, but you can't go wrong looking at a bigger picture.

People get so lost in minutiae sometimes that we forget what's really important - is anything I'm doing making me happy? Am I happy?

The only way to be happy is to stop wanting. To do away with desire, and not in a 'fight desire' mode. Desire would only be managed by acknowledging it and to acknowledge yourself.

Same with ego, as ego is often times defined by our desires. The desire to be accepted, to have a place, to be recognised, to be told that they are loved, that they are okay people.

I find all this pathetic, but I also understand that it is a basic stupid human need.

Choose your battles wisely. Not everything is a do or die situation. I have been in situations where it is literally do or fucking die. As in, funeral die, morgue die. As in you fucking stop breathing or your heart stops beating.

It forces perspective.

All these people, all these games, the politics, the posturing, the lies - they are all worthless. I do what I want to do. I spend my limited time with people I want to spend time with. And fuck all to everything else.

End of the day, I'm still the best there was, the best there is and the best there ever will be.