March 2009

have you ever experienced this phenomenon when a song just keeps going on and on inside you?  im currently trying, to no avail, to get this song outta my mind!

“That you give me no, That you give me no, That you give no, That you give me no, Soul i hear you calling, Oh baby please …”

know this one? yup, Erasure’s “A Little Respect”.  Not that its a lousy song, in fact its kind of fun having this little number on “loop” mode inside me. heck, i even feel like doing a little jig! unfortunately, im in the office.  anyway, not sure when this whole episode started but it also brought back good memories of the crazy retro days of the late 80s and the 90s. among other things, those tea parties, Fire, Mambo nights, white t-shirts, vodka lime, falling into drains, a certain Lynn (private joke but im clean here. honest!), turntable, vinyl records etc.

and i also recalled strangely that since 1999, i have not followed the music scene – local and international – since.  just like that.  somehow, i decided overnight that it just wasnt worth the time and effort anymore.  i decided there and then that the songs that have followed me through my teens and semi-adulthood shall suffice to entertain me henceforth.  somehow the music of yesteryear seemed to be so much more meaningful than what is churned out now.  both musicians and songs now dont make that the kind of impression that the ‘older’ songs do.  in fact, they could even be downright brilliant but it just isnt the same. 

i remember reading sometime back that songs jolt our memories and different songs bring us back to different certain phases / points in time of our lives.  perhaps that is what happened to me back then.  i no longer want to be reminded of the present (and future).  the past is good enough for me to live the present.  strange?  perhaps.  but then again i always felt that nothing is really wrong with me.  not when i see tens of thousands of both young and old fans pay buckets to watch the reunion concerts by Led Zeppelin, The Police, The Eagles, Take That (gasp!) etc.  

now does anyone know if Erasure is coming back together for a reunion concert too?


Note: For what its worth, the author is a big fan of Led Zeppelin, Guns & Roses, Dire Straits, Suede, The Cure, Sheryl Crow, Erasure, Take That (only one song – “Back for Good”), Alan Tam, REM, among many others.    


as most of you would have known by now, 7 months had passed by just like that and i am coming back real soon.  the decision to take my first break was easy.  the hard part was the stress associated with my homecoming.  a sample of the “Things to Do Before I Board my Flight” includes: getting my leave approved, booking and purchasing my tickets, coordinating with my friends on my beijing holidays, clearing my work before i leave, packing, coming out with the list of things to do and people to meet, planning my schedule/time-table in S’pore, listing down the ‘die die must eat lest i die of regret’ foods etc.  gosh, its gona be one heck of a ride just going home! 

anyway, i leave with (unsurprisingly) few regrets.  its been an eventful time since i got back here and i have really experienced and learnt so much more and different things as compared to my first 6 months.  could be better but can’t really complain there as the learning curve here is steep and i think ive handled it relatively ok.  looking forward to switching off my thinking capacity by at least 30% once i reached back home! 

work-wise has been a little tougher.  for the few obstinate one who think i live a ‘007’ lifestyle, i clarify again that i don’t get any babes, aston martins and sip unlimited martinis.  on the contrary, much of my job involves being friendly and meeting people to chit-chat and have lunch.  yup, chit-chat and have lunch!  that’s only part of the story, the other is learning to speak intelligently and indulging in little Jedi mind-tricks (i.e. ‘plant’ ideas).  yes, those hours of repeatedly watching  the Star Wars films are finally paying off in a big way. 

anyway, it will be interesting to see how i adjust back to S’pore.  ive been following news back home daily but im sure S’pore being S’pore, much has changed.  and im not talking about  just the exterior, its also about the soul of the country.  i even asked myself at times whether these changes permeate to my family and friends (and importantly, the local food – have the FTs finally taken over the cooking of all our famous local dishes?).  maybe yes, maybe no.  but guess the only important thing as i countdown the days to my hokkien mee and kopi siew-dai is this ………………. “im home.”