Friday, December 30, 2005

I don't want to go home. If I had it my way, I wouldn't want to spend a single festival/holiday at home.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

The two Paks were happy to see me, but in the poor lighting conditions in their tent i couldn't really make out their faces.. but I think one of them had significantly more white hair this time.

Brought them some food items the next day. As I approached the tent, I realised that one of them was playing the radio, tuned into a Singaporean Malay language station. So he wasn't lying, after all, they did tune in to listen about Singapore after meeting me. It was really quite bizarre listening to Taufik being interviewed while sitting there.

I met up with Iskandar, a translator I met during our last trip, and I told him over dinner how stupid I felt to mull over the Ex while being surrounded by people who had much worthier things to mull over. I mean, I would take a pill if I could. And in the middle of my self-abusing rant, he just looked puzzled and said quite curiously, "But... you're only human."


Wednesday, December 21, 2005

The Cats Are Still Here.

At the IFRC camp surfing wirelessly. Nothing much has changed.

I'm so predictable.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Birthday, Schmirthday

"The important thing is that I kept up my special birthday tradition of gut-wrenching misery and horror." - Buffy, Helpless, S3

Erm. Not quite accurate, of course. I refer only to the fact that its 1:36 AM and I fly off at 8:40 AM and I am about to start packing.

Feel free to mock me!

See you soon.

No shit, Sherlock.


Originally uploaded by elsija.
The (incomplete) set is up.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

In the (seemingly) never-ending quest in finding out who I am, and what I like, and what's my calling etc etc, I kinda realised yesterday photography for aesthetic reasons doesn't quite do it for me.

Of course, this is an entirely personal thing, since we all find meanings in different things.

But I realised, after looking a lot of online photo galleries, and my own things (all the cat stuff haa) that I just don't feel anything. Pretty is not good enough.

And its funny, because for once I was right about myself. I always told people that I wanted to do documentary photography, that it was my ideal and dream. But I figured, hey hell what do I know I haven't tried much.

Hm wait. I still haven't. But well, at least I'm one step surer of it.

I don't care if I managed to concoct a great set-up pose, or a great moment when this pigeon landed on an ashtray in the middle of a red room or whatever.

I think not doing serious work for a while made me realise something was missing from my photographs.

Fire Walking - Tears

I know its terrible quality (PH DAMN YOUR CAMERA), not exactly the ideal angle, not exactly the best composition or lighting. But so what. This is what I want to do.

Thursday, December 15, 2005


I don't know how else to put this, but I'm going back to Meulaboh.

I'll be gone from the 20th to probably 27th, taking photos of whatever goes on there during the one-year anniversary for Mercy Relief.

There's a lot of things swimming in my head now, but nothing tangible enough to express. I've gone from overjoyed to extreme nervousness/anxiety to guilt and confusion - my head's quite fucked up now.

What I do know for sure, is that I'm beyond-words grateful. To the person who offered the lobang, to the people who have been happy for me, to the pix desk people who had every right to been as nasty as they wanted to but didn't, to Liwei who really has been so nice about the whole situation.

I really don't know what I've done in my past life to deserve all this luck.

I know of more deserving people out there who don't get quite as many breaks as I do. Why do I get so many chances in life? It makes me get complacent sometimes, and yet I'm always constantly aware.

Its the reason why I feel guilty for ever feeling down or sad. Why I only whine to a select few people who understand me because I don't think others will tolerate it since I have nothing to whine about. Why I feel so ridiculous mulling over an ex.

Once, in Bangladesh, when I was feeling less-than-happy, I forced myself to sit down and write out all the blessings I could think off. I don't remember how long the list got, but I think I made the point to myself.

I try really hard to have an attitude befitting of my life, but sometimes I fail. Ok fine, a lot of the times, I fail.

I don't know what people will think about this, but I've already spoken in person to those who mattered and I (hope) know what they think, so that's all I care about.

This trip means more to me than I can explain. And I just want to say again that I'm very very grateful.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005


Ladies and gents, PMS is hitting real bad this month.

Take care y'all.

Here's a little treat:

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Quote of the day on MSN:

"Anyway, I have to clear the studio of inflatable sex toys now, they've got to use it for something else." - Lars

I hope I will be around on the day they fill the ST studio with inflatable sex toys.

The rest of the fire-walking photos are up. Couldn't do a lot with post-editing, because of the fantastic D1 quality, and plus I forgot to fix the white balance before shooting, and colour correcting this kind of intense tungsten lighting is way out of my photoshopping capabilities. So ya, everything is YELLOW.

I want to go Haw Par Villa to take photos, inspired by my APJ classmate who did an essay on the place. Beautiful photos. Any interested people? Another APJ-orgy of sorts?

Everynight I am tempted to take Sedil, Bangladesh's version of Valium (same ingredient), which I bought to use on Kitty during the flight back. I read the information sheet, I know how much I can take etc etc.

I know it's not right to rely on it as a sleeping pill, but I'm sick and tired of dreaming and waking up feeling as if I never slept at all, and this pill really does knock me out. Or maybe its just a psychological thing.

NO i'm NOT depressed, I've only taken maybe 5 since I came back in June so i'm not addicted or anything. Plus I only have a couple left, should "save up".

I've no idea how much Valium costs in Singapore, but I can assure you it was dirt cheap in Bangladesh, and I bought it at the drug store without a prescription. Apparently, everyone there has taken it at some time or other. Hm.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Push back!

Would like to pledge my undying support for Tym's PUSH BACK campaign.

Because idiots who do not understand 'if i don't get off, you don't get in' really ought to just shove it.

And here I'd like to appeal to everyone with a handy camera, to anticipate and position yourself when you're about to get off and SNAP a picture of the ensuing chaos in all its fugly glory.

I noticed that the ratio of people getting off : getting on always tends to be 1:2 because there's only be a single file of people squeezing off in the middle, flanked by idiots on either side who think they're SO skinny as to be able to nudge their way in without imposing on others.

In all honesty, I don't think that these people are stupid. I think some magical wave of ignorance lives at the entrance of every MRT station and is set in motion when the number of people near it exceeds 10, and it leaps off from the top of the door into the minds of the hapless people outside, numbing their self-consciousness and turning them into temporary zombies whose sole purpose is repeated like a bad record in their heads.. must get in, must get in, must get in....

Fight the zombies! PUSH BACK.

(NEXT UP: MOVE IN - How to use non-verbal cues and body language to tell the standing people on the bus that their ass is NOT skinny and the centre aisle is NOT wide enough for three and how there is NO ghost at the back of the bus so really its quite safe to move in.)

Saturday, December 10, 2005

The PR effect

I don't know if my letter below makes sense, because I typed it out in a hurry. But I hope they print it.

But if you guys would be so kind as to look at the Forum today (Sat), Ms Elaine Pong has gotten herself into a bit of a pickle. At least with me lah.

The "stray dog problem is complex and multifactorial" WHAT THE FUCK? Please lah, shoot me if I end up in PR. Wait, no need, I'll shoot myself.

Forum Editor,

I write in response to Ms Elaine Pong's letter, "Not practical to replace culling with sterilisation" (ST, Dec 10).

I would just like to ask about the effectiveness of the AVA's lethal-sounding "multi-pronged" approach over these years. If culling is practical and impossible to remove as one of the "prongs", the assumption is that it makes such a great difference that without it the stray animal population would be out of control.

If so, the practicality and effectiveness of culling would surely have yielded some results after so many years of its implementation.

And if it had indeed been successful, then I would not be wrong to assume that the stray animal population is now controllable, and we can now make do without killing/culling these animals, and instead direct our efforts towards the arguably more humane re-homing and steralisation methods.

I hope I do not wrongly assume that the AVA would be eager to stop having to kill these animals.

However, if the AVA cannot do away with culling because the animal population is still not under control, then perhaps it is a bit of a problem to claim that your current method is "practical" and effective. Changing strategies, and having the support of passionate and rather fervant animal-lovers is surely another viable path?

Surely, the AVA does not wish to have to continue answering the public's questions on why they are culling animals 10, 20 years from now.

Jessica Lim

Its always very heartbreaking to find out another cat has gone missing overnight.

And even more so when you find out that the people responsible for their deaths are those who actually do love cats, just that they're a bit stupid and don't clean up or leave such a horrible mess that it makes residents complain.

Stupid, stupid.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Well, ph FINALLY passed me my photos from the fire walking all-nighter photography stint so I've uploaded a bit of the stuff. And he saw THE cat, so please ask him how damn cute it is.

I'm constantly astounded by the number of bruises that appear on me without me realising it. Am I a thick-skinned klutz? Is this a disease? Why do I bruise so much? Is it the job?

I had two assignments today, one at a yacht club facing the sea, and the other at a newly opened spa. So my working mood was totally ruined because I felt I was on some kind of holiday.

Man, I miss the sea. Even though it frightens me, and I'd never have the guts to go sailing alone.

And I tried to picture myself as one of those people with large amounts of disposable cash spending $300 on a spa thing. And as much as I'd like to think be a simple and unmaterialistic person, I'm not going to be such an idiot to pretend that I don't like to be pampered. For free lah, maybe.

Fire Walking

Typically not very comfortable with wide, cluttered shots, but I like this one for some reason. See the set! Even though its not complete.. i'll finish it when it isn't a struggle to keep my eyes open.

Have a nice day everyone.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Cheryl Tan 1974-2005

I've just returned from the cremation ceremony of a relative, and I am tired because I didn't sleep and was doing the traditional chinese shou ye (nightwatch).

There's nothing I can say that people wouldn't already know. Yes it was sad, no parent should have to bury their own child, I wonder if someone will look into whether the hospital was negligent, but we're all very lucky to have a huge family that rallies round with playing cards and nonsense talk when its needed the most.

But, at the risk of writing something politically incorrect due to my current state of irritability, I would like to say that I did not appreciate being preached/evangelised to during the wake last night, and before the cremation this morning.

I respect all religions, I respect that she was a Christian, and a devout one at that. I do not mind listening to hymns and prayers and the pastor/priest telling us that she's happy in the safe hands of the Lord Jesus Christ.

And in all likelihood, this is what Mei Mei would have wanted anyway, and that's fine.

So then, I don't know why I bristled during their speeches. I know that this religion is all about putting God above everything else. But I thought we were supposed to be remembering Cheryl, and not the God she worshipped. I wondered why 80% of their speeches revoled around how Jesus sacrificed himself, how God is the only way, how those who embrace him need not fear death, and how he's the answer to the meaning of life etc etc... What about Cheryl? But I suppose, its all the same to them anyway. Doing the work of God, and all that.

Whatever makes her happy.

It could also be because I was being a bitch, and I did not like what I (subjectively) perceived to be smug look of know-it-allness on their faces and the tone of their voice. And how that lady constantly referred to her as "our late sister Cheryl". Yes, we get the idea. The word 'late' started to get very redundant after a while.

I'm very sorry for all this negative feelings Mei Mei, but just to make things clear, its not towards your God or your religion.

I wonder if I was supposed to dream about you that night. Why me, of all people? I was never particularly close to you. All your siblings had that puzzled look, as if wondering, why not in my dreams? Why hers? Or is it because I thought about you too much?

So many ways of looking at this. Please visit them too ok? I think they all want to see the same smile you showed me, it'd put them at ease.

Monday, December 05, 2005

My weekend.

Some self-explanatory, but not quite linked, photos from over the weekend:


Mom clocked 5:52 this year.

Terrifying conversation:
Mom: "No more, no more, please don't let me do this again next year."
Mom's friend: "Can lah! You retire, then your daughter takes over your place!"

You've got to be kidding.


The mandatory cat photo.

Just wanted to show off Kitty's tail. It'd win itself some awards at those fancy shmancy pet shows, I'm sure of it.


This is the kind of photo that can break a man's career. To be fair, he only looked like this for 0.1% of the time. Taken at Think Centre's forum for the upcoming Human Rights Day. Dismal turn out, even more dismal discussion. Seriously, other than the speakers, no one made a single intelligent point at all.


I actually filled in plenty of these quizzes/memes/lists things without posting them. But as ghim the birthday girl said.. keep the ball rolling!

Five snacks I enjoy:
(i'm not a snacking person so this is difficult)

grape-flavoured Fruitips
the round fish-ball cracker thingys
"original" potato chips
all fried items

Five songs I know by heart:
Raining on the Sky - Naked

The Space Between - DMB
Run, Baby, Run - Sheryl Crow
On that Street Where you Live - Nat King Cole version
Blower's Daughter - Damien Rice

Five things I would do with a million dollars:
buy a digital camera and a better Mac
send my mom to the Boston Marathon, and my Dad to an African safari
set up an animal shelter
send money to buy the two Paks and Sufia a house
buy my way into the National Geographic

Five favourite shows:

Five bad habits:
thinking too much
worrying too much
talking too much
sleeping late

Five biggest joys:
being with animals
early mornings (as the beginning of a day and not the end)
getting that one special photo
family dinners

Names you go by:

Parts of your heritage:
er... negri sembilanian??? punggolian??

Things that scare you:
false promises

Two everyday essentials:
food and water (nothing else is essential leh)

Five things you are wearing right now:
rubber band

a tired look, because this list is longer than expected

Two favourite bands/ musical artists:


Two things you want in a relationship:

Two truths:
I don't know myself very well
I don't read people very well

Two physical things that appeal:

Lean and toned physique

Four favourite hobbies:

watching entire seasons of sitcoms
sitting in wide open spaces without concrete in sight

Two things you want really badly:
for my FYP to be done and over with
for me to stop mulling over the Ex

Two places you want to go on vacation:
Any place where I can see whales (and zoos don't count)

Any other place where I can see any other animals (and zoos don't count)

Two things you want to do before you die:
Swim next to a whale/manta ray/shark
Go trekking on horseback alone

Two ways you are stereotypically a chick/guy
I talk/think/worry too much
I am emotional

Two things that you normally won't admit
Sometimes I'm nice just to make myself feel less guilty

Two things you are thinking about right now
Why I'm such a bitch for the reason stated above

How I really should stop doing that

Two stores you shop at:
I don't shop, so I can't answer this

Is it weird that I had to think very hard to answer a lot of these questions? Wah lau.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

More cats.

Let me know when I'm overdoing it. Cats cats cats.


Super Cat!


Cat and Clown

My Precious

Feed Me

Called back at the last minute today to do work, which thrills me because every job I get I take it as a sign that I haven't fucked up that badly yet. But today was excruciating because I had to use flash, which I loathe. I swear if they give me more night jobs to do, they're eventually going to figure out they hired a dud of a photographer and fire me.

Its quite fun being silly in the newsroom at midnight when there's no one around to shush at us.


Kitty's curled up in a corner on my bed, I wonder if she dreams and what she could possibly dream about. There's just something about her, I could lie there and stare at her for as long as she sleeps.

I find it so hard to believe sometimes, that this is the same kitten I picked scabs and fleas off six months ago. I'm unbelievably lucky to have her here with me.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

"You know, people underestimate the value of a good ramble." -Buffy

I was notified that someone in Sunnyvale, California paid a (short) visit to my blog. And I got all excited because I thought it read 'Sunnydale', which as you all know is home to the nicest collection of jackets, coats and boots on television.

Man, I wish Buffy would come kick me in the ass for not buying the DVDs when I was in Bangladesh.

I miss that show :( I mean, I think ALL the men on the show are attractive! The goofball, the cynic, the librarian, the macho man, the tortured soul, the erm werewolf (xander, spike, giles, riley, angel, oz).

Just one of my all time favourite photos.


Clean Cat

Bushy Cat

Chewy Cat

I have been trying for the past hour to change the irrelevant 565 green thingy at the top.. but my brain's too tired to try any longer.

See lah, this is what happens when you try to run (changing bkgrounds) before you can crawl (basic html).

So I shall just settle for posting photos of The Cat.

Saturday, November 26, 2005


Diya shows off the only 2 things Brits are good for.

Heh. Just kidding, lah.

I did not realise it when I went out yesterday, but I did at 5 am when the Ex sent me a message, that it has been a month since the walls collapsed and the waters rushed in and blahblahblah...

Only a month? One bloody month? And I had thought i was doing so well, so busy with everything and feeling independent and in-love with my single self and blahblahblah... but it has only been a month.

This is just one of those days when I cannot be bothered to maintain the facade.. the "i-don't-need-nobody-sista" facade which I put right out there while The Voice in my head giggles softly at how ridiculously convincing self denial can be.

Ya but today, I just cannot be bothered to pep talk myself. I'm tired.

I'm tired of how everything seems so bland these days, that I know this really should be one of the happiest times in my life because I love what I do, and how I desparately want to enjoy every nanosecond of it but its all just so bland. Its utterly frustrating and I feel really stupid that I cannot control it, letting one segment of my life ruin the rest of it.

Its like eating good food with a stuck nose. Horrid.

*I promise not to let this down time last past 5 pm today*

Thursday, November 24, 2005

What a trip

I accidentally removed the wrong plug when trying to fix up the iron and unplugged the computer instead.. and now my earlier post is all gone.

No matter.

Here's a summary:

1. A survey guy from IDA pissed me off because he took the liberty of filling in some answers on my behalf. On my behalf. Oh.. the nerve.

2. Work was great. Because I got to see old friends again. And some of the pix desk people remembered me (not without some jolt to the 'ol memory cache) so I didn't have to go through the excruciating 'hi-lets-introduce-yourself-and-make-inane-jokes-about-stringers' round.

3. I had no food the whole day till 5 pm and it felt great. Because I was actually WORKING.

So yes, just a memory/keepsake as my first ever photo for a commercial newspaper. I don't know which one they use, or if they're even gonna use it.

But dammit the sugar glider in the centre is so DAMN CUTE I could dip it in chocolate sauce and gobble it up. And as a person who strongly feels that one of her greatest flaws is not being a vegetarian.. that's a.. compliment.. i think.

And kitty shows just what she thinks of Steve Irwin.

And that's no g'day to yau you drongo whacka! I love freaking Australians out by immediately associating them with this dude.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Its more or less confirmed, the terror begins tomorrow.

And as usual, I don't know the details before I go to work. ALWAYS like that. They'd think i didn't need the money. But I do! I want to treat myself to lamb at Jerry's which was so heavenly... so so... sigh...

Also, I never get sick of sarcasm (unless its malicious! there's a difference):

Malcolm: "I think we can hook you up to a D2H... if you break it, you pay for it."
Me: "I'll probably just sell my body and soul to the company, do you think that'll do?"
Malcolm: "Sorry, but you've already done that."

*weak laughter* its still funny lah, until it becomes true, anyway.

And today, at the cost of $1.55 + $1.10 (reservation fee + MRT fare) I got this for 2 weeks:

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Up up and away!

Moolah coming in!!!!!!!!! Make way make way....

I think its mostly settled, although the details are not quite ironed out yet, and i'll be doing a temp/freelance stint at ST pix desk during the holidays. Hopefully others will be joining me...

I was excitedly trying to make Malcolm (who did the pseudo-interview) remember that mini conversation we had along Cross St. in a cab after some assignment on Boy Scouts.. when I was telling him enviously that I wish I were in his shoes. Of course he didn't AT ALL, but I do and that's what matters.

I don't remember why I was always envious of the photogs... I don't remember if I had that a la burning passion to pick up a camera.. if it were that strong, surely I'd remember it right?

Oh well, it doesn't matter anyway. Anyway when he called my hp by mistake like an hour later, and I said.. no this is not Wilson, this is Jessica.. he said "oh my god" and I realised that the mention of my name to people above the age of 35 typically results in the utterance of that phrase. "oh my god".

I should consult someone about that.. ask me and I'll tell you how it really sounds like!

Made the mandatory stop by the home desk, and said hi to Bertha first. It's like CNY visiting.. you always say hi to the lao da first, otherwise you no show respect leh!

Had lunch with Dom, who exudes Dilbertism (now that I've watched the DVDs I can make the link) even before noon. But the look on his face after hearing me respond to his "how's the husband" question was utterly priceless, and quite made my day.

The hpb oughta go after ST pple to quit smoking first. If they can succeed with the entire of level 2/3, i'd say they have their game going on.

Anyhow, things are looking up. I'm meeting Shyam tomorrow, I start work soon... finally some semblance of a routine that I could get used to.

My brain's pretty fried. Too much Stephen King. Too much blog surfing. After 2 hours of surfing Singaporean photogs' blogs.. my nerves are worse than ever. Fuck. On the game on the game!

Sighting sighting!

Yes yes yes I know it's almost 4 am, and I've to wake up really soon, but I just had to post this. Miyagi has been.. Crystalled!

"Last week, a Crystal (is your middle name Jade?) Chan from the New Paper emailed and then called me to ask me some questions, mostly about whether there were differences between Singaporean and American bloggers.... "

Please don't ask me why I got excited about this. I get excited when my cat's ears twitches.

I went for my first supper at Geylang today. I feel like I oughta get a badge or something, or like check off a list of "Things All Singaporeans Usually Do".

Sunday, November 20, 2005

But but... I don't want to be half and half! Although technically, we all are not entirely male/female... but ya you know what I mean.

The $100 Tangs voucher is gone, because if you want to FORCE me to spend money, I will gladly concede.

The shopping trip today was one of the weirdest ever. Here we are, holding a free voucher, and simple unable to find the will to spend it. It's not that there was NOTHING to buy, my mom got it quite wrong.

It's because we don't usually shop, and when we do, it's functional shopping aka - i need a pair of sandals so i'll get a pair. But today, we didn't really need anything, see, so we were both quite helpless at the prospect of getting something we DON'T need.

But of course, you can always trust me to kick the NEED into WANT gear. After mom declined vehemently to get a $99 Timex watch (I can buy 10 of those anywhere with that price!!!) I erm well, bought myself a pair of shoes.

And she tried to dispel the guilt by saying it was my birthday present.

OK! Whatever it takes man.

Man oh man, I could buy shoes to fill my room if I had the vouchers for it.

Saturday, November 19, 2005


"If you're a boy, you should be working. If you're a girl, you should have a boyfriend. You don't have any! You're not a boy, or a girl!"

- Nazrul comes to a stunning conclusion.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Marching On

Not that anyone I know is any different, but I'm really no good with breakups. I'm not sure if it gets easier with experience, but I can attest that the lack of it doesn't help.

I'm just very glad I'm not the sort to turn to food for comfort.

But as was saying to all the unfortunate people who had to listen at some time or other, it doesn't seem quite right that I haven't been properly alone for the past half a decade, and that mustn't be a very healthy thing.

Does the word "mustn't" even exist??

But I'm also very glad that my friends are very realistic and pragmatic people who will discourage any form of self-pity/whining/general-wallowing/listening to sappy music. =)

And a trip to Borders really makes me wish a truck would come along and dump a shitload of moolah on me to spend. Other than the Get Fuzzy paraphernalia, there's also all the Banville books, all the Stephen King's Gunsligher series, and other assorted very yummy things.

If you so happen to be a Stephen King fan, I would like to inform you that the new National Library actually bothered to stock up with multiple copies of most of his stuff. Try your best NOT to look at the "Changing Faces of Terrorism" exhibition, but if you must, try to refrain from reading anything. Just look at the pictures.

They did not, however, bother to do the same for Get Fuzzy, and I had to spend the $1.55 to place reservations. It's worth it though.

The Orchard Road lightup is not very good, but I think its become an instinctive thing to diss the decorations. I no longer have a "good" to hold up as a standard. And I realised that the "God of Fortune" hat has GOT to be a ribbon on you get on top of a present. I find it hard to imagine it as anything else.

Also, I'm not sure if anyone will believe this, but my mom and dad collectivlye FAILED to spend a $100 voucher at CK Tangs. In my mom's own words, "I really couldn't find anything!" My brother made three trips there, and returned all three times still with the voucher. There is something VERY wrong with that shopping centre.

*wry smile*

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Er ok I admit it. It's true! I follow the ANTM website! And I really do care who wins the new season!!!!! (And it'd better not be Nicole).


And it gives me little tingles of celebrity-sighting-type-infantile-pleasure that
Elysse from Season 1 thinks that SIA is "the world's best airline". I always liked her form of bitchiness on the show.

I do NOT read too many blogs. Bleah.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Late last night and the night before,
Tommyknockers, Tommyknockers,
knocking at the door.
I want to go out, don't know if I can,
'cause I'm so afraid
of the Tommyknocker man.


It's 23:14 - No reply yet.

I have been avidly following the Dawn Yeo/Yang saga. Wow. People are nasty.

Monday, November 14, 2005

As of 1.30 am, Tuesday, November 15 2005 - Shyam has not replied me. An enlightened source tells me he flies to Sri Lanka on Wednesday.

I'm very sorry to all the people who has had to bear my talk about this incident. But not sorry enough to stop it. =p Thanks lah.

Kitty just gave me a bad scratch. She was tangled in a plastic bag that wouldn't "let go" of her, and she was duly distressed. It makes me feel so sad, I wish she didn't have to feel so helpless.

I really wonder when I will stop jumping when my phone beeps with a msg after midnight, and think that it means more than it always turns out to be.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Unprofessional Jess

Well yes, here's some news.

Prof Shyam called me to stay back after a very awkward group FYP meeting the other day to express his utter displeasure at my "unprofessional behaviour" and "lack of discipline" and that "he has consulted the committee and is on the verge of dropping me from FYP".

Er.. ya. I think this is the MOST trouble I've been in for my entire academic life, save for that trip to the principal's office in St Nicks when they found I had set up some kinda anti-teacher voting website.

He said he'll make the final decision on Monday, which I intend to accept entirely.

From our conversation, during which I was extremely upset, I gathered that the key issue here is that:

1. I'm "always late"
2. I "do not show up for class"
3. I don't take my work seriously.

And that he "does not wish to work with someone who is not capable of professional conduct".

So until I find out on Monday what is going to happen to me, I'm reserving personal comments.

Er ya I'm ok now.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Joolin The Man

Characters involved:

1. Joolin, Teh
2. hows-the-curry-PH
3. assorted friends
4. Vodka and A&W rootbeer
5. A deck of cards

Set up:

PH suggested introducing stakes when we were playing tai-ti (???). This involves everyone topping up a common cup with alcohol, and the loser at the end with the most cards will drink it.

The Plan:

Joolin the man decides to rig the cards so that PH will end up drinking. When PH goes to get the drinks, Joolin proceeds with his masterful plan.

The Build-Up:

Joolin pours HALF a cup of vodka while the table sniggers at PH's fate. PH laments "wah lau! my cards are damn bad!" GQ turns red trying to control her laughter. PH decides to pass on adding into the cup (as the rest of us did).

The Fall:

In a spectacular game, holding nothing higher than a '10', PH deals TWO sets of 5 cards... and yes. Joolin loses the game.

Joolin is THE MAN.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Deelicious news!

Diya is heading to Singapore and I'm estatic. I don't know why exactly... but ya I'm estatic.

On a cold night in a guesthouse in Bangladesh, Diya and I put frozen beer cans in boiling water in an attempt to melt the beer because we were stupid enough to have left them in the freezer for too long... and proceeeded to hack away at the can to try to get it open so as to get out as much of the half-mush beer as possibly possible. Erm.. a chopper and a knife are deemed insufficient materials to open an alumnium can safely.

The results? Beer-slurpee... which is NOT good.

But ya, I'm estatic. Diya!!!!

Monday, November 07, 2005

On a dark and stormy night, Alvin...

Alvin's trying to be placid. And I totally support that! I am an avid supporter of placidity-niceness-all-round.

So Alvin, these are some statements for you to practice your "placid-ness" on.

1. I believe that Journalism can change the world. And Truth comes with a capital "T".

2. I believe that there is a white-picket-fences-happy-ever-after.

3. I believe that optimistic people are the smartest people around.

4. I believe in the good in people.

5. I believe that you can always trust and depend on your friends to be there for you.

For the record, three out of the five are accurate (as far as what I believe anyway). Chew on THAT.

It isn't easy, I don't need to pretend that it is.

At various points in my short life so far I always end up back at the doomsday-teenage-pessimism statement of "you can't rely on anyone for happiness but yourself".

But I think during this return trip, instead of arriving on a dark and stormy night soaked and miserable and lonely, its coming back wrapped in a neutral-beige white wrapper with a twig of wild flowers and scrawled in friendly pencil-writing.

And that really isn't such a bad thing.
I'm all a-tingling with the prospect of being able to spend a full day reconfiguring the blog, colours/words/tags/sidebars/table widths etc.

The way I'm with tech is the way i was with science (aka physics and chem) in secondary school - I don't know/understand what I'm doing, but I manage to get it done anyway.

Its a real blessing I suppose, since the periodic table scares the shit out of me and don't even get started on what's protons and neutrons and electrons and covalent bonds AHHHHH.. but I still managed to get an A. The wonders of blind mugging.

But ya I like fiddling with HTML (have not advanced) and seeing what's there to do.

Manbitch Alvin: the 565 was part of the template design lah. Don't ask me what it means.

Am procrastinating at Macdonalds (oh the horror!) but sigh I have been sold out by the 24-hourness of it all because I hate having to stop studying when I don't want to.

And hows-the-curry PH is here as well, cursing at Greenwalt.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

"Ya lah, and then the girl with the mole fly up and push him down into the spikes."

It's quite something to wake up and hear your mom say those words. Damn these Sunday morning period dramas.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Procrastination Version 3.2

After a crazy 12-hour marathon photoshop/indesign orgy I'm glad to announce that I can start studying.

I don't know how certifiably Singaporean this makes me, but I actually like studying. But only and only if there's a really nice open air bench (with a wall to lean on), a coffee machine/shop nearby for emergency purchases, and a good buddy to watch my things when I need to go to the toilet.

Its just so calming. Everything has to be so organised, files books notes readings... coffee on the right, laptop on the left, the occasional food binge/surprise from visiting fellow-studiers.

I still think the best study place in the whole of Singapore is the canteen in St Nicks. Imagine a huge auditorium with really really high ceilings, rows and rows of benches which you can push together to form a little island for yourself, and an always-open drinks stall that you can buy Ribena at 50 cents, over-looking the track and field... yeah.

I miss Xanga's protected posting. Does it exist on Blogger?? Am I a total tech idiot?

And oh yes, it was time for a change. Kitschy my ass!

Wednesday, November 02, 2005


Below: Nabir, Nazrul, Mr. Foreman. Saiful cooking in the room.

Although the photos don't show, I think Nazrul minus is moustache and plus a nice fancy get-up, would look very good in some portrait shots.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

I've been quite a fan of (i refuse to use their old name), since they've an EXCELLENT video collection of college pranks.

I'm a big fan of pranks.

I've been following the one below.. its not hilaroius compared to some stand-alone stuff they have, but still! I love the continuity! If I lived in a dorm, everyday would be a nightmare! I'd love it!

Part 1: Crap Attack!

Part 2: Revenge of Milk

("I talked to Jason tonight and he told me the whole house lives in a constant state of paranoia. They cant shower, crap, eat or anything without fearing someone will jump out and scream. Round 3 tomorrow! ") AW man.

Part 3: Revenge.. again..


Saturday, October 29, 2005

Erm. Yeah.

The Keys to Your Heart

You are attracted to those who are unbridled, untrammeled, and free.

In love, you feel the most alive when your lover is creative and never lets you feel bored.

You'd like to your lover to think you are optimistic and happy.

You would be forced to break up with someone who was ruthless, cold-blooded, and sarcastic.

Your ideal relationship is lasting. You want a relationship that looks to the future... one you can grow with.

Your risk of cheating is zero. You care about society and morality. You would never break a commitment.

You think of marriage as something precious. You'll treasure marriage and treat it as sacred.

In this moment, you think of love as commitment. Love only works when both people are totally devoted.

I swear, ignore the horrible cutesy title and just take the test. It's fun because they only ask questions about animals, and I keep trying to figure out how they linked it.. It IS fairly accurate, and I really like the questions - only because they are the ones I ask people all the time - and no one has bothered to really ask me back, which is silly because I ask the questions because I like the questions.. but nevermind.. go!

Scram cat.

I love Bucky.

Look at his fat tummy! My god!
I wonder how may cats Darby has in real life.
I wonder if he looks like Rob.

I would like to come back as a Bucky in my next life. It ain't so bad. No matter how nasty I am, my fat furry tummy will set people at ease!

But I don't want to be Catbert though.

(ok just found out Darby doesn't have pets, his Boston apartment landlord doesn't allow or something.)

Friday, October 28, 2005

This is not cool.

Now I know why most Singaporeans dislike having to look at their cleaners in the eye. If I were responsible for throwing down that kind of rubbish, I wouldn't want to face them either.

Today the guys had to take out all the bins from the chute so that they could turn on the water supply which automatically flushes the rubbish chutes from the top floor.

Pretty cool. I never knew it was automated.

What's NOT cool, is that once the bins are out (since you can't have water collecting in there, and besides the point is to wash the area inside) whatever rubbish that gets thrown down within that half and hour has to be picked up.

I tell you, there are only 6 or 7 chutes in my block. And within that time, I saw Nazrul pick up about 3 or 4 diapers, and two sanitary pads, and a packet of half-eaten Macdonald french fries which was obviously much too heavy and torublesome to put into a plastic bag first before throwing it down.

Now the way Nazrul works, you'd think he was channelling the spirit of a bulldozer. He's efficient and fast.I always have to run to catch up with him.

And he's not going to bother walking to and fro to get extra equipment (like steel gloves and a gas mask) to clean things up when he's just trying to get the washing job done.

And just in case you think that they're used to the smell and the dirt, well Nazrul's face is scrunged up in a perpetual frown of disgust.

But yes, in the name of time and efficiency, everything is picked up with his hands.

I salute this guy lah.

I stink.

I'm just tired of talking. I'lll try not to talk about myself, I'm tired of that.

And no lah, i don't stink.

I did spend 12 hours sitting in a rubbish dump and being around rubbish in general, but I don't think I stink. The cat had a real good time sniffing me up when I came back though, in that quizzical way that seems to mean "where the hell have you been?".

Nabir and Nazrul has been working at my blocks cleaning and doing the stuff that no one wants to do for the past 3 years, and I have never said hello to them till this week.

When I tell them I want to do something about cleaners because we Singaporeans don't appreciate them enough, you guys really should've heard the kind of laughter I got in response. Not spiteful, more tragically amused.

"Singaporeans 1 is good, but 10 will be bad."

We're pretty shitty people, as I've noticed. Nazrul tried to prove a point I think, and shouted out a cheery HELLO!!! to an auntie bringing her kids home from school, and she had this confused look of disgust (why the hell is he talking to me) on her face.

And you know the funny thing is, the rubbish dump doesn't stink. I could sit in there all day. Sure it's not the cleanest place ever, but its like a little covered up hole, it gives me anonymity and safeguard from all the prying eyes following me around.

Photos to come, I promise.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Taking a hiatus from blogging (not that I was ever very regular), but yes. Shall spare all of you the doom and gloom!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

"You call yourself a free spirit, a wild thing, yet you're terrified that somebody's gonna put you in a cage. Well, baby, you're already in a cage and you built it yourself." - Fred darling.
I really do think it's the walls that you built around yourself that are the highest and the most impenetrable. Rapunzel rapunzel, let down your hair.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Am stuffing myself with chocolate eclairs and durain cream puffs - the frozen kind. Which taste nossogood, but is very convenient and because it's all in the freezer, I get to eat 'em still very cold and quite "crunchy" which I like! Compared to warm and gooey.

And my mother just told me how my grandparents and uncle and aunty spent five hours hunting for the cordless phone handset all over the house, and the house next door (where the other set of grandparents stay), and in the kids' school bags and everywhere and everywhere..

Only to find it in my grandfather's pocket.

I really shudder to think about what kind of amusement I will provide for my grandchildren when i'm that age - given that at the age of 21/22 I take about 3 trips on average to leave the house proper without having to go back because i forgot my ezlink/handphone/rubberband/money/sweater/tissue what not.

I really have to stop finding excuses for my utter disrespect for punctuality.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Things that make Jess happy.

I'm simple that way. Er, I think.

Islam and Rickshaws

Dogs and Wine

Thursday, October 20, 2005

This has been happening a lot.

I type things, finish the blog, then delete everything and just don't feel like posting it.

What? Jess not feel like talking?

Ya, so out of this world right.

Monday, October 17, 2005

We're the very finest university in Asia! Really! We is really the bestest!

Lucky for Ah Mooi, no one reads emails from Career Hub. Not that I believe, or want to believe anyway.

So credit goes to the girl in the west, who's still giggling about it (an hour later).


Originally uploaded by elsija.
This is gonna be one of the last photos I take for the sake of taking for the sake of "pretty-ness".

Saturday, October 15, 2005


I'm in a foul mood. Not stormy grey sky foul, but black and lighting and thunder kind of foul.

I am quite upset over the presence of this under the block of flats across the road:

I just rattled off a rather unhappy letter to AVA, and CC-ing the top honchos in the division, courtesy of this, just so they will have to reply me. I hope.

They'd better not be culling anything in my area because I haven't seen these two for the past two days.

And I'd really hate to think that something happened to them the day after I considered getting them collars.

Whereas this one hasn't quite learnt how lucky it is. But it's getting fat.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

I think its funny how all the wires are calling it a "colonial law".

I also think it's funny the way the judge romantically recalled the racial riots.

But what was the funniest of them all was how the judge said the Sedition Act was a "red line".

More like a red sea, if you ask me.

How do you draw a line with this set of vague laws that is of no use unless they want it to be used?

And technically, I now could be charged with 3(c) "[bringing] into hatred or contempt or to excite disaffection against the administration of justice in Singapore".


I did a search for my name in Google Images just to see if by any chance people had used any of my photos.


Just a very small number, but makes me happy enough. Given that they were just sitting there and someone thought they were good enough to pick. Cheap thrill?

Aw fuck it! i'll just let myself be happy about this without any reservations or guilt!

Funny thing is, even though there's no money. It feels so much better than seeing a text article of mine being picked up and reproduced. I don't know... it's so much more powerful, and it means so much more to me I guess.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005


Lars and Rajiv are probably having a whale of a time in Oslo now.

Thinking about how much it would cost for me to go there makes me shudder..

Lars, I really think you should come to Singapore. I really cannot stress it enough. Oh bring Rajiv if you have to, although I hope by now you've weaned him off his intense idealism and head-in-the-stars (which u like, but I have no patience for sometimes) because I think Singapore might depress the poet in him.

If I like photojournalism, but I like to take my own sweet time to do it, does that make me lazy? I refuse to feel guilty for wanting time.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

He's busy competing with the sun to be the centre of the universe.

Quote above from Lords of Dogtown, which you should watch, like immediately, if you haven't already. It's so raw. I like.

Tonight is a funny, discombobulated kinda night. I wore pink today. The girlishness feeling is taking a long time to wear off.

I'm so totally into gossip/bitch sites now, no thanks to addictive
Junk Feud which I check whenever I can because dammit that girl updates like nobody's business.

I'm also totally devouring everything on
McSweeney's site. I can't stop myself giggling! Help!


Currently devouring:

I don't want to get sued for copyright. So here's just a very very very small extract.

"I don't want to sound condescending, but I think if you unrolled a spool of unused film, the sun would expose a better picture."

Its so much like William H. Robinson's stuff that I get confused. Same kind of humour. But one American, one British. I dunno lah.

I've got his book of Absurdities which i stole from my uncles house, if anyone wanna borrow.

In other news, colours photos are up.


Thursday, September 29, 2005

Meulaboh, Aceh, Indonesia

Meulaboh, Aceh, Indonesia
Originally uploaded by elsija.
Busy, busy busy busy. I wish I could just sit and edit all day. The photos are piling up! And I haven't even scanned in the rest from Bangladesh. =(

I blame my cat for my procrastination. Lazing about is contagious.

Random question. Who's the one behind the camera taking all those beautiful photos of Furong Jie Jie?


All these shirts constantly fuel my fantasies of having my very own t-shirt printing machine and a never-ending supply of plain t-shirts. Make a new one everyday! Depending on your mood!

If I had the money, I could print myself a brand new t-shirt everyday... and it'll line the walls of the Museum of Jessica's Utterly Incredible Projects to show how I felt everyday for one year.

I liked this one too:

This is one of the few lines they came up with that wouldn't offend people in a bad way. Shitty Americans will do anything for the shock factor. Some of the taglines were downright nasty nasty nasty. Already, they've come up with spoofs for H. Katrina. Nasty people.