i stepped out of central station in hong kong this morning wondering what village i've been living in all these years. "this must be hong kong", i say to myself, pinching myself ever so often to remind myself that humans do build buildings that tall.

the country bumpkin in me spoke only chinese and english whenever they mistakenly mistake me for a native islander. i tell them i come from singapore. "singapore is a humble place", i say, and i tell them i'm not used to all the neon. "bright lights scare us", i add, also adding that singapore is a very epileptic friendly place.

hong kong, clearly is not. mongkok and tsimshatsui need to come with epilepsy warnings. also, anyone with fear of heights need not apply too, given that a 30 storey building is probably low-rise. blind people though, have it great in this place, not only do they not have to put up with all the light pollution, the traffic lights beep when you're allowed to cross. also, there is always some cantopop tune blasting which you can enjoy. also, beware of falling airconditioning units. (they just looked pretty vulnerable all that way up).

the light show was fucking hilarious i might add. it's this extravaganza (which is fantastic, i might add, i now know why singapore is rushing to build all those casinoes) where skyscrapers start spewing lasers and changing colours and patterns to amuse people. when they introduced hsbc tower, it would then start blinking pink and purple to introduce itself. and i read this about the bank of china building.

With its height of 131 metres this would make an impressive building in a lot of cities,
but not in Hong Kong. On the list of tallest buildings of the city, it ranks somewhere near to #360...

i also spent my annual pay on shopping, which doesn't go far in hong kong.

queer village, this hong kong.

summer school photos!

the cold war. cox vs arne westad, pakistan, central asia and mongolia vs korea, taiwan, s.e. asia and india. no contest. underneath a banner saying "long live the party and the may our ideology stand proud for 10000 years". well no, but typical pompous chinese banner.

look who's paying attention.

class teacher brendan

cox talking cock.

the 201 and 202 classes. observe the banner again.


all the chinese students are returning to schools now. the trains are filling up. beijing west station was a madhouse. it's an immense train station and there are 50 ticket counters. its a sight to behold. each one had queues in the tens of peoples.

xi'an. probably not.

i will end up in hk.
what is globalization?

globalization is fucking semantics.


司马台的万里长城, 密云县,北京市东北的郊区。

司马台离北京市有150多公里,需乘三个多钟头的巴士。可能是因为距离较远,来这部分的长城来看的旅客较少。城墙也是原始明代,而不像八达岭,居庸关,以 被重建,翻修的部分。可是,卖礼品的小贩越来越多,特别是从附近河北的农民。至少美国的 《星巴克》(Starbucks)还没攻打到这边的城门外!

北京大学。共有三万多人在北大留学。每年中国的《高考》给学生们不少的压力,烦恼, 是为了考上中国的名校。这就是其中的一个奖赏, 你的学院内将含有一个美丽的湖畔。LSE规模可能比这个湖还要小呢。





the economist has in it this week an article on the 'mismeasure of woman.' after lawrence summers dared to suggest that there were not so many women professors in math and science because there were fewer intelligent ones.

what i learnt from it:

female is the default brain setting! testosterone makes the fetus male.

men masturbate much more than women and had more liberal attitudes towards sex in a casual relationship.

men and women, though, reported the same degree of sexual satisfaction (80, 50, 30 anyone? that's got to be conditioning!)

men are more likely to be geniuses and idiots. variance of intelligence is higher.

when participants thought they were being observed by the experimenter, men dropped more bombs to destroy a target in a video game. when the identities were unknown, women dropped more bombs.

they had a related article on "la diff�rence", on how women won the sex war:

let's count the stereotypes:

1. "take map-reading. the female tendency to call for five right turns while holding the map upside down"

2. "men, studies show, are exceedingly good at rotating 3d shapes in ther head. perhaps women once stared open mouth in wonder as their mates juggled pyramids of imaginary polyhedra."

3. "but now that the rich world has about as many tunnels and bridges as it needs, and the large bits of machinery which aren't made by computers and robots are made by the Chinese, their usefulness is limited."

I'm Chinese. does it mean i'm still useful?

4. "modern professional life is dominated by management, which sets high store by emotional intelligence, empathy and communication. wise chaps seeking professional advancement should therefore spend their free time with groups of women, boning up on how to undermine somebody's confidence while pretending to boost it, and how to turn an entire lunch table against an absent colleague without saying a mean word. such skills are likely to have a greater influence on their lifetime earnings than the abilty to spin an icosahedron."



i am very proud of my blog.

despite its rather default template and absolute lack of photos.
despite its lack of controversy or motivation the change the face of singaporean politics
despite not telling you anything useful about how to cook or which is the best aluminum rim for your car.
despite its rather childish entries dating from 2002.
despite its lack of stories of conquest and sex.

i am proud because i read some of the entries and think, 'damn, what a damn fine blog'.


four letter words and other symbols of rebellion.

i remember watching once sinead o'connor perform. well, i didn't remember the circumstances until i was reminded of it tonight, but she had 2 weeks earlier ripped up a picture of the pope saying "fight the real enemy". she was supposed to perform dylan's "i believe in you" but she came on stage to a chorus of boos.

well, look at it yourself, you can find it on youtube, search for "sinead booed"

shaved head, hands behind back in a plain blue dress she then rips into an version of bob marley's "war".

the following is from wikipedia:

On September 22, 1997, O'Connor was interviewed in Vita, an Italian weekly newspaper. In the interview, she asked the Pope to forgive her. She claimed that the tearing of the photo was "a ridiculous act, the gesture of a girl rebel." She claimed she did it "because I was in rebellion against the faith, but I was still within the faith." She went on to quote Saint Augustine, by saying, "Anger is the first step towards courage."

this is a horribly complex post to write.

dylan :
"who booed me last night?"
"did you boo me last night?"
"i want you to find all the people that booed me last night."

i used to try that kind of self-avoidance of shortcomings and i used to infuriate people with out of point answers and arguments. what happened to it.

i have sold out, i think. i'll be honest. to most definitions of "selling out", i have sold out. bravo. i applaud all my free-spirited friends.

i don't know what crazy impulse leads me to think that now. what crazy impulse wants me to be a pubescent again, and not younger in a "life was simpler then" sense, but 14 year old two fingers to your teacher, how uncool all the other earnest, eager little kids were. no matter how stupid it looked, i miss the conviction that i was cooler than everyone else. yes, i want to be the hottest thing since sliced bread. =p everyone else is from camatotz, as far as i'm concerned. i think i idolised myself. i saw my idols in me. even atticus fucking finch. don't matter that you don't see nothing.

i was so cool i didn't need to say much. in fact, i want conversation with me to sound like strawberry fields forever again. i don't want to know how your day was. fuck off. but i hate confrontation of course, dad knows best. dad always thought i was the "quiet rebel"

and then growing older is about learning new things. but then you convince yourself that there are limits. and people come along and tell you not to sulk so much. you convince yourself that happiness is attainable. and it very well turns out that it is. you work hard, you get good results, generally. smile more, and you make friends. "the love you take is equal to the love you make". so you try to be a more wholesome, well-rounded person. girls like wholesome, well rounded boys who are sweet and caring. well, anything to get a wholesome girl.

but i find myself wondering what kind of life i would have had i not gone to jc, or not gone to a particular class in that jc. somehow i felt a part of that community which prevented my full don't give a flying fuck self from taking hold. nobody allowed me to brood in the corner as i would have liked and even on my off days someone would always tell me to snap out of it. plus, life become more of a responsibility have to get things done kind of life as we all strived to prove what fantastic interpersonal/managerial/leadership skills we had. it's quite easy to turn on really. i think i would have drifted aimlessly (until a need for change took hold and then we're back where we start today)

maybe i just don't do interpersonal. make me.

don't get me wrong. i think i'm happier. but i've sold out. my blog reads like a fucking carousel now. which is a shame really. it was the blog or me.

i feel like being a petulant spoilt brat now.

this can be sung to a tune to your head. it's quite profound anyway, most of the best pop choruses are simple and catchy.

don't know much about middle east
don't care much about no third world peace
all i know is that i love god.
and i can tell you that god loves you too.

when you find only a little piece
of the carcass that was once your niece
tell yourself she's in a better place
"members only" membership by race.

who loves me
who loves me
the whole world's fucking crazy
who loves me
who loves me
you're never gonna find me

they say that love is just a four letter word... i used too many four letter words today.

"dear ms oeni,

Thank you..."

They never learn!