Soon we’ll be living in the future

Not writing on a daily basis really takes a toll on your ability to write. At least that’s what I’ve discovered after not writing consistently for quite a period of time. I mean I thought it would be the other way – write less often, ideas build up, and you can unload your brain on the internet.

Nope.

I mean, I sat down here in front of my computer for a good five minutes before even writing the first sentence of this blog post. While thinking of what to write, I shaved my face. The wonders of an electric shaver – I don’t have to shave my face in front of a sink because there was no mess. The electric shaver pulls the hair from your face and cuts it. Most of the hair is then trapped in a chamber instead of falling all over the place. Or maybe it’s because I have pathetic facial hair, so it didn’t really matter in the first place. Every now and then you just open up the chamber and release the hairs. You can then wash it if you like. Make sure you leave it to dry properly if not it’ll end up with a funky smell. Like a T-shirt that hasn’t been dried in the sun. Except it’s a lot worse because you hold the shaver so close to your face, it’s impossible to avoid the smell without holding your breath.

It’s day 25 of my almost month-long trip. It feels good knowing that the end is near, and I can go home to see my family, friends and dog. Sleeping on my own bed. Not having to worry about whether I have enough underwear or cigarettes for the rest of the trip (spoiler: I do – I picked up 3 packs of boxers at Walmart at $7 each – what a steal. Also, bought a carton of Malboros duty-free before my first flight). I also brought plenty of vape juice, cotton and coils.

I bought an overpriced hairband because I lost the one I brought to the US. I don’t know why those things aren’t .99 in the US. They’re just bent pieces of plastic! Not a big deal because I didn’t spend that much else on anything anyway.

Getting a SIM card in the UK was a good idea. I don’t have to worry about being bored on long drives. Then again, I’ve been spending a lot of time sleeping in the car. Something about being in a vehicle that puts me to sleep easily. The constant motion while not being in control? Beats me. Sleep rules anyway.

I wish sparkling water was more common in Malaysia. It’s a fizzy drink without the calories! What more could you ask for? Dr. Pepper. But that’s a bit too much. I wonder if there are Dr. Pepper vape juices. Hmm.

I was genuinely disappointed when Google decided to replace their awesome blob emojis with generic looking faces. I was already annoyed at apps not using Google’s emoji on Android (how is that even a thing?) and now I won’t even get the chance to use them anymore in Google’s own apps. Ah well, they will be missed. By me.

Birdy is a really good singer, with really good songs. More people need to listen to her. Here you go:

Cutting cords

It took a while, but I finally did it. I took the plunge and purchased my very first pair of wireless headphones. They aren’t completely wireless, there are still cords that connect the earbuds to the Bluetooth receiver which hangs around my neck, but compared to the regular earbuds I was using before – it’s a world of difference.

Previously, I was put off by wireless headphones because I hadn’t used a pair before. After a few weeks of using these wireless headphones on a daily basis, I gotta say, they’re a pretty damn good step up from regular headphones. Makes me wish I shelled out more money for my initial purchase. Oh well, I’ll be using these a while longer, at least until they break or I lose them. Any bets on which one happens first?

Wireless headphones are the shit. Especially when you’re traveling a lot. You don’t have to fuss around with your cables when you need to stop listening to music. Just press the button to pause it and remove the earbuds and let them fall around your neck. Previously, I had to take out my earphones, roll them up and put them in my pocket. Making sure my headphones didn’t fall out accidentally while on a flight was no longer an issue (those wires liked to get caught on arm rests or in my jacket for some strange reason). And on the rare occasion they do fall off, they’re still hanging from the receiver.

Sound quality (on the set I purchased) is decent – I’m sure it’ll be much better on higher end models, but I didn’t want to splurge on something I didn’t know I would enjoy. Also, I’m no audiophile. As long as I can listen to music or podcasts clearly through the earbuds in my ears, I’m good to go. Bluetooth also works pretty damn well. I didn’t have any trouble pairing my headphones with any of my devices. However, it is unable to pair with multiple devices and switch between them quickly (I don’t even know if it’s a supported feature in higher-end Bluetooth devices). Battery life has been great (I get about 9 hours+ of use), it doesn’t take long to recharge, and it works with my exiting micro-USB cables.

I’m not ready to replace all my wired headphones yet (what’s the point of replacing the headphones I use at my desktop?). I still keep my regular one handy for the rare occasions I run out of juice or when I need to save battery on the wireless. But I’ll definitely pick up a pair of wireless headphones again in the future. Conclusion, I’m now a fan of wireless headphones and I wholly recommend for people to pick up a pair if they’ve been on the fence about it.

Key things to look out for: sound quality (do you like natural sound, extra bass or treble?), weight (I prefer them light), battery life (9 hours is a good place to start, more won’t hurt), type (in-ears are my preference, headphones don’t work well with thick frames) and appearance (haven’t seen any outrageous looking ones yet, but it boils down to personal taste).

Coffee sans Cigarettes

Sitting at a Starbucks in Charlotte Douglas International Airport, waiting for my next flight out.

Today marks the end of my first week on a very long buying trip. I haven’t written anything substantial on this blog in ages so I figured I’d just launch notepad, drink some coffee and see what comes up.

In the grand scheme of things, one week isn’t a very long time. But the duration of my trip is probably going to be the longest I’ve spent in a single stretch out of the country. Not that it matters. Personal milestone. Not really. I mean, it’s part of work, so it’s not really an achievement. Speaking of work, whenever people find out I get to travel for work, they think I have a dream job. I mean, sure it is great. You get to go to nice places, you get to eat fancy food, you get to see the world (albeit mostly through airplane and car windows), but that’s it for ‘fun’.

Besides the rare downtime (like I have now, which I should actually be using to get some other work done but I can’t be fucked because I’m exhausted getting up at 5 today) – our schedules are full. No days off, even on public holidays or weekends – after all, time is money and we’re here to work, not play.

So all I’ve been doing for the past week is buy books. Going through sales history of books. Going through our suppliers’ inventories in showrooms and warehouses to look for books. Suggesting how much books should be priced, and how many copies we need to take. It’s not difficult, but when you do it all day, every day, it does get tiring.

I hope this doesn’t sound like I’m complaining about work, because I’m not. I have a good job. It’s not my dream job, but it is very interesting, and it pays the bills. Also, I love books, so I can’t complain about being surrounded by books all the time. Like every job, it has its ups and downs.

Again, I don’t know why I typed out a whole essay about my job but I did.

Waiting at Charlotte Douglas International Airport is kinda annoying. To smoke, you have to exit the airport and go through security checks again just to reenter. I’m probably going to smoke 2 sticks when I land.

My flight leaves at 8pm. It is currently 5pm. I’ve got 2 and a half hours to kill before I head to the boarding gate.

This trip I noticed I’ve been listening to a lot less post-hardcore and pop punk. I’ve been listening to a lot of Birdy and Tegan And Sara. And Oasis. Catfish and the Bottlemen. And more Kavinsky. All great artists. I’m still a fan of palm mutes, chugs, power chords and breakdowns. But I guess I’ve just been feeling more mellow and chill. Lil Dicky is still on constant rotation though. That guy is too good to get rid from my playlist.

Last month I created a Spotify account for the first time. It’s pretty cool, but I don’t find myself going back to use it. Somehow I’m still a fan of locally stored music. Also, Spotify player is pretty ass. Foobar 2000 is life, don’t think I’ll ever replace it. However, access to brand new albums the day of release and easy way to share tracks with friends is great. Also, it’s nice to see what the people I follow are listening to on it. I noticed a lot of surprising scrobbles.

This airport is bustling. People just walking up and down past Starbucks nonstop since I sat down.

Yesterday, while having a smoke, I met a veteran. He was in the area for his son or grandson’s graduation. He told me he was stationed in Korea and Vietnam in the past. He told me about his injuries (apparently he had broken his legs, arms, fingers before). He told me that he was trapped in his hotel room last night because for some reason their door was stuck from the inside. He said his wife almost passed out due to her claustrophobia(?). He told me that in his spare time, he went camping alone with his two knives and an AK-47. He hunted snakes and sold them. He was an interesting old man who smoked orange Pall Malls.

This morning on my flight to Charlotte, the guy next to me started talking to me when the plane landed. He told me he was on a business trip and that he and his colleague were flying their wives in for the week to stay at their hotels as well. Get this, I wasn’t even smoking on the plane! He just opened up to me. Maybe I have a face that signals ‘I care’. If I didn’t write this down, I probably wouldn’t remember all this in a week’s time.

Anyway, I think I’ve rambled enough on my blog for now. Maybe I’ll write again sometime this week. Maybe not.

I miss Snuggles. Hope she’s doing okay without me. She deserves a better friend.

Gig #105

Been a while since I’ve headlined a show, so I’m pretty psyched to announce I’ll be one of the main acts for tomorrow’s Feedback Open Mic at Jaya One. I’m also going to be away from Malaysia for almost a month, so this will be my last one for some time (doubt I’ll be playing any open mics in the US/UK haha). I haven’t prepared a set list yet, but I believe it should be a mix of some old tunes and newer ones. Hope to see you guys there!

Feedback Open Mic Jaya One ft. Yi Fen & 2storeyheart
Event Page

9th May 2017, Wednesday
8-11pm
The Bee
Jaya One

Details
Hey folks! Feedback is happening at The Bee Jaya One again, bringing to you one of the busiest open mics in town!

Featured acts for this show include:

Tan Yi Fen
2storeyheart

Here, have some easy-to-digest bite-sized info:
– Signs ups are at 7pm and are first-come-first-serve basis
– Show starts at 8pm
– It’s a 2 song slot
– Bring your own cables
– The Jaya One edition is ACOUSTIC only
– Because you are awesome, best open mic-er gets to open for one of our Lot 36 slots and the chance to win recording time with iseekmusic!

Remember to tag us in your pictures with our #FeedbackOpenMic hashtag =)

Entry is free. See you there!

***
Feedback is a collaboration between Moonshine & The Bee. It happens every 2nd Tuesday (Jaya One, acoustic only) and 4th Tuesday (Publika) of the month and has been running since December 2011.

Gig #104

Nothing much to say except that I’ll be performing tomorrow night for the first time at Ril’s Bangsar. Should be fun! Drop by for some good music and drinks.

Ril’s Warehouse Sessions | Event Page

Thursday, April 13th
8:30 PM – 11:30 PM
Ril’s Bar
30 Jalan Telawi 5, Bangsar Baru, 59100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

THIS JUST IN! We are running a pilot open mic night 8.30pm onwards at Ril’s Bar, Bangsar on Thursday, April 13th! πŸ˜€

#1 Kahlilfornia https://youtu.be/z7CKYJ2lRkw
#2 Jess A Craig https://youtu.be/OOtChwFLR6M
#3 Arisha Akhir https://youtu.be/669-klj4qBc
#4 Sarah Daniella https://fb.com/sarahdaniellamusic
#5 Sia Nicholas https://youtu.be/mxsfBhyjLLM
#6 Darryl Thomas https://youtu.be/b_TKjP9ddwU
#7 Maha Jeffery https://youtu.be/vTp_Xzn6icE
#8 2storeyheart https://youtu.be/hFFZ3Y8-3KU

Sign up by emailing us@openmicmalaysia.org πŸ˜€ slots are limited so get in touch ASAP! It’s gonna be a mad one! πŸ˜‰

P.S. Shaneil Devaser of The Endleaves will be kicking off the night, Ian Tai of The Propositions will be in the middle, and Boy Bravado will be closing!

We’ll also have a lot of drink promotions, so don’t miss out this Thursday night!

Completed: Renewal of blorgy.net for 1 years/Gig #103

Is it so hard to remove the s at the end of years if the preceding number is 1? Why not just make it year(s), that way you don’t even have to change anything?

Man, this blog is almost 10 years old now. I’ve spent a third of my life writing on it. 10 more years to go before I die a triumphant death. Can’t wait. I wonder if anybody will bother to help me keep it running. I guess I could pay my hosting fees for a hundred more years before I die. Maybe blogs won’t even exist in the future anymore. Everything would be VR and shit. This site would be a relic of the past.

Like paper. Not really. People still read physical books. And magazines. And newspapers. Maybe only hipsters will read my blog next time.

Anyway, it’s that time of the job again – where I get super busy right before a sale. This time even more so because Jakarta 2017 is gonna be bigger than before. I’ve cut down my dota time to once a week. I haven’t even been able to keep up with all the DAC matches. But OG has been kicking ass, so I’m rooting for them to win the whole thing.

Tomorrow I may be playing my 103rd gig. Not confirmed because I don’t know what time I’ll get off work – but if I am able to make it on time, you’ll be able to catch me at:

Open Mic de la Frontera #29 | Event Page

April 4 2017
8 PM – 11 PM
Frontera Sol Of Mexico, Jaya One

Lineup:

Open Mic de la Frontera happens every Tuesday night! #OpenMicMY

#1 Sarah Daniella
#2 Ian Tai
#3 Arisha Akhir
#4 Jojoe
#5 Shavkat
#6 Darryl Thomas
#7 Cikicikiboomboom a.k.a Harissa Halim
#8 2storeyheart (maybe, maybe not, but definitely maybe)

See you if I see you!

Revisionist History

“What if it was doomed to fail in the first place? And that incident only served as a catalyst to speed things up? What if we were already falling apart at that time, but just didn’t know it?”

“And what if it wasn’t? What if you weren’t so fucking stupid and didn’t do what you did – what then? Would it have ended some other way?”

“Not that I can think of at the moment…”

“Exactly.”

I dragged on my cigarette and exhaled into the tortoise’s face. It didn’t seem to mind – it never did. It just stared ahead, through me, seeing through all the smoke and bullshit.

“Stop trying to revise history. Just swallow the pill and man up. You fucked up, that’s all there is to it. There’s no point trying to believe otherwise.”

“Can I make things right?”

“It’s unlikely. And if I were you, I wouldn’t even try. Why the fuck would anybody give you another chance to let them down again? You’re better off dead. You should’ve killed yourself in that car crash.”

“Yeah, I should’ve stepped on the pedal harder.”

“Probably.”

There was nothing left to be said. I put out my cigarette, and walked back into the house.

***

“And to think I was actually rooting for him,” the tortoise thought to itself. It turned and retreated into its alcove.

The specieist in me

So today, I was linked to an article about some folks in China shaming a rat – literally. They strung up a dead rat, hung a sign on it saying “Is that all you’ve got? You can kill me and I still won’t admit it was me who stole your rice!”

While I was amused by the picture, I found it cruel at the same time. I mean, if they had done the same thing to a dog, I would have been outraged. Which got me thinking – is it wrong to favor an animal over another? Like, let’s say a dog stole some rice, or maybe it killed a child. Then it was slaughtered and hung out to be shamed. How would I feel about that? I don’t know.

But then again, China gives no shits about what kind of animal you are when it comes to punishment.

We gave ourselves the right to put down animals without any fear of retribution. Imagine if animals could band together to avenge their fallen ones? Would we reconsider how we treated them then?

Sometimes pets are treated better than human beings.

Is owning a pet equivalent to keeping a child in captivity?

I’ve read a quote saying something like “if you claim you love dogs but you eat meat, you’re a hypocrite”. Would that mean someone saying they love eating carrots but hate potatoes is a hypocrite? Where do you draw the line?

If animals like dogs and cats were bred to be slaughtered for food (like chickens and cows), would that be any better? What makes eating one animal versus another frowned upon (assuming that neither of them are endangered)?

I enjoy eating meat. I also love dogs a lot and would probably never eat their meat under any circumstance. I love most vegetables except bitter gourd (that isn’t deep-fried), lady fingers, and other slimy vegetables. I don’t mind people who are vegans. However, I don’t like people who feel the need to shove their beliefs down the throats of others (though this isn’t limited to just dietary habits *cough*religion*cough* sorry, I used to be one of those people). Also, eating meat isn’t such a bad thing.