Monday, January 7, 2008

Oh, it's 2008 already?

December 31st, 2006, 11:30pm

I'm on the rooftop of the carpark complex just outside The Atria - Damansara Jaya, catching my breath after short anaerobic jog past drain and dumpster. They should make this a standard track runner training technique - half mile jogs in a dumpster.

Nothing wears you out faster than not being able to breathe.


A gentle night's breeze, the soothing silence and a reflective moment alone under a beautiful starlit sky - well worth the trip here, I'll say. My handphone nudges for attention. "Happy new year. May your (insert generic greeting text here)". I slip it into Drafts, to be relayed later as a reply to the next person who texts me.

Experience has taught me that it's okay not to write your own greeting texts. Nobody else does. Instead, simply mediate. Take what you recieve, and pass it on to the next person you're obligated to reply to. If everyone gets everyone else's greeting through you, you've done your job. Let the 15 cents per sms you pay be your New Year's gift to them.

I start to wonder if perhaps they settled for prefabricated greetings only because they were too busy partying to type me a real one.


5 minutes to midnight, and here I am alone atop a car park. "This'd make a mighty fine spot for a barbecue", I think to myself. "And a party." "With people." "Lots of people."

Just then, I hear shuffling in the distance. Shuffling and the banter of a dozen or so unruly juveniles exchanging what I presume to be dirty jokes and naughty giggles in their native tongue. Which also happens to be my native tongue, except that I'm not much good at it.

I pretend that I'd rather not have them around; that I don't mind being alone; that I don't wish I was with a certain someone right now, (or anyone I know for that matter) and that I don't care that she's out probably having some awesome (clean) fun with a certain other someone or something. It's not really working, but it's the thought that counts. Or whatever.

Five, four, three, Fireworks go off in the distance and the mob breaks into song and dance. I look around, put on a smile, and tell myself, "Well, at least I'm not alone."

I'm not a very good liar.

Exactly one year later...

December 31st, 2007, 11:30pm

I'm standing in a restaurant with 4 other guys next to 2 ladies seated at the only available table, on the only available chairs. We're just here to take a breather before charging headlong into the crowd while unloading foam aerosols over our heads and I'm guessing the staff can tell from the Snow Spray cans we have, all lined up on our table. Heck, I don't even drink.

The room feels emptier than a restaurant should feel, but only because every newly vacant table and chair gets shipped out to the porch so real customers can party under the fireworks without having to leave their beer coolers.

The air is damp and warm from underventilation and Daniel's whining. He doesn't want to be here, and given his experience two years prior in the car park just down the street, I can see why.

But I'm determined not to spend this new year alone - neither pule nor perspiration will stop me from ushering in two-thousand-and-eight with a bang.


I ready a short, somewhat vaunting text to let fly at the stroke of midnight : "Happy new year! From Brian @ the Curve, and NOT alone!" but just before I can put it away into my sms Drafts, the handset gives up its final beep and dies. The brilliant blue backlight fades to lifeless grey - an excellent time for a flat battery, I'll say. I think to myself, "Fine, I won't brag, then."


We suddenly realize watching airborne pyrotechnics through a concrete roof may prove somewhat difficult, so we ready our party sprays and make our way outside. A friend of mine takes extra precaution and keeps a firm hold on my sleeve. "Just so we don't get separated", he says. I shrug it off as a mild homosexual disposition coming out to play.

Fireworks, foam aerosols and friends - I couldn't ask for more. Everything's set - There's no way I'm going to spend this year's countdown alone now. This is gonna be awesome!


We wade through the crowd single file, intent on getting into the heart of the action before it all breaks loose. Halfway there, a massive ring dance spontaneously erupts like a maelstrom in the endless sea of people. A racing human train breaks off the spiraling body and ploughs straight into our puny convoy. I snicker at the comic potential and turn to make a wry comment to Daniel, only to find that he isn't behind me - he's far ahead, along with the rest of the bunch. I was last in line. Well, was. I reach for my phone, only to remember it didn't make it through an earlier greeting text. Bummer - I should have just stuck with em' prefabs.

I watch my friends fade into the thick through the impenetrable barrier of a train of dancing smugly smirking partygoers (well, it sure seemed like they were smugly smirking at the time. Along with everyone else in the crowd. And quite possibly, the universe.) and contemplate the sheer irony of this grand conspiracy.

Five, four, three, Fireworks go off directly overhead, and Snow Sprays discharge in every direction. I look around, put on a smile, and tell myself, "Well, at least I'm not alone."

As it turns out, I'm still not a very good liar.

Happy 2008.

A Brianlah Wallpaper (omgwtfbbq!)

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Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Activation Energy

If you've done chemistry, you should at the very least have heard of the term Activation Energy being mentioned in passing. If I may so blatantly misappropriate a scientific term, Activation Energy is simply the obstacle that must be entirely overcome before one may proceed with the rest of whatever-it-is-that-needs-to-be-activated.

In the matter of blogging - to which I am not new - the activation energy involved in setting up a blog often entails having to secure a satisfactory blog url; and as anyone attempting to hitch a free ride on board the blogspot train in recent times might have noticed, such is no pie.

If you consider how the maximum length is 37 characters for a blogspot url prefix and the 37 (26 letters case insensitive, 10 digits and a hyphen) different characters you have to craft it out of gives rise to over 1.08E58 different valid "" URLs, it really shouldn't be as hard as it is at all.

Alright, fine. If you really must be an ass about it, it's actually closer to 1.02E58 since the hyphen isn't allowed at the start or at the end. But that's not my point. What is, is that even with 1-and-58-zeroes-behind-it addresses to go around, most - if not all - of the good or at least intelligible ones have already taken (not to mention a large part of the unintelligible ones too) and of those, most boast little more than single "testtestest lololol i luv bloging [sic]" post for content.

You think I'm just exaggerating, don't you? Here. See. For. Yourself.

PS : n and 8 o' appears to be abandoned, as does n and 9 o' and n and 10 o', if not actually for good reasons. I'm guessing any number of 'a' will probably yield a result as well, but I've not had the time nor the motivation to try them all out.

It's all almost as silly as the dude who shows up at the post office and button mashes the ticket printer just to hear the voice go "Two-Five-Seven, Counter Thirteen...Two-Five-Eight, Counter Thirteen...Two-Fiv~". No wait, I forget - the inconvenience that guy causes dissipates the moment he's tossed out by security. The prefixes registered by some kiasu blogger wannabe stays there for life - and by that, I mean BlogSpot's life.

That's right, kids. You're not getting even if Mat Blogger gets hit by a car. In fact that, or any other fatal catastrophe on his part for that matter only serves to snuff out what little hope you have left in securing that address you so dearly hanker for.

So here I am trying everything I can possibly come up with that doesn't sound completely stupid and impossible to remember (I even laxed one or both of those rules on several attempts, to no avail) and then just as I was about to give up and settle for the uncustomizable plank of a blog application that is, mom goes "Oi! Who left the front door wide?! Own up before I feed you both to the dogs!" at which point my sister obediently discloses, "Brianlah!"

Blasted sibling of mine...


Okay, so I made part of that up. You don't need to know which part, except that it really isn't that far from the truth. And I promise, I won't make anything else on this blog up. Unless I implicitly say so, or as implied by my right as a blogger to make stuff up in the name of entertainment. And trust me, alot of bloggers gorge themselves on that liberty.

I won't be posting as habitually as some bloggers do, but rest assured that when I do post, it'll be free from all that perfunctory nonsense chronically compulsive bloggers so often pad their blogrolls with. (No offence, chronically compulsive bloggers. =)

I value opinionated comments and even the occasional "Hi, How're you doing!", but please try to keep the chatter to the shoutbox in the sidebar which I will someday find time to put up, and the flaming and trolling to the flaming and trolling section of your own personal site because I don't think I'll ever want to start a flaming and trolling section here on mine.

Customary introduction cum disclaimer out of the way, I think I should get back to my life now. Things are just starting to get busy for me of late (quite a bum of a time to start a blog, I'll say), and I reckon not every 20 year old has time to squander on egocentric online diaries while work piles up in the inbox...

Oh, and by the way if you haven't already figured it out, the name's Brian and I'm friggin MALAYSIANLAH! HELL YEAH!

(that was a happy hell yeah.)

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