Boy problems, who’s got ’em?

Just a short post to let you guys know that I’ll be heading to Malacca later this week for another Big Bad Wolf Sale, so I won’t have time to blog again. Should be back in a couple of weeks – feel free to go through my archives or check out the (non-dead) links on my blogroll kek.

Also, go listen to Carly Rae Jepsen’s Emotion album if you haven’t already. It’s been my jam of late. Boy problems is so damn catchy.

See you guys soon.

Pavlov’s Coffee

I’ve unknowingly conditioned myself to work better when I’m out of my home, drinking coffee and smoking.

It all started a couple of years ago, when i left work early and decided to do some work at a cafe instead of heading back home. At the cafe, I ordered a cup of long black and drank while I slaved away at my laptop. Little did I know, this was just the beginning.

When I was done with my work later that evening, I realized that I finished a lot of work in such a short time span. My mind told me, ‘it must have been the coffee, keeping me awake and focused!’ Plus when I’m not home, I actually have a reason to focus on work, since I can’t do anything else. At home, I’d just be distracted by my computer games, guitar or my bed.

After that day, I continued doing the same thing whenever I had the opportunity. Cup of coffee, cigarette and laptop open. In fact, tonight, I’m doing the same thing.

I didn’t really think about it until about 10 minutes ago when I was thinking about excuses, and why people use them and realized that I’ve been using excuses myself. Sure, I’m away from my distractions when I’m not at home – but I know people who can work from home just fine. They know how to compartmentalize their time well. Why can’t I?

I’m probably just not trying hard enough, and now, I’m a victim of conditioning. I can’t work at home at all and I take every opportunity to get out of the house if I want to work. Sure, I get my shit done, but I’m also running away from the problem of self-discipline instead of fixing it.

Just some food for thought on a Friday night.

That Darn Cat

He sat and waited in his car, but she didn’t show up. Her car was home but she was nowhere to be found. There was no answer when he called her phone, he thought to himself, ‘she must be busy’. He waited for another five minutes before he left. He had everything he wanted to tell her all planned out and rehearsed in his head. ‘I guess I’ll try again another day.’ He felt his heart sinking and fought back tears as he drove home.

Oh man, he’ll be so disappointed
hope he doesn’t think I avoided
him on purpose! I can’t believe that
I’m stuck in this car ‘cos of my cat.

I fell in trying to get him out
of my trunk, clunk! was what I heard
before I blacked out – my vision was blurred

I passed out and I lost track of time
Before I woke and started to yell
Get me out before I lose my mind!
I didn’t want to die, can’t you tell?

Sure enough, I heard his car pull up
It idled for a while then he gave up
Guess he’ll never know what happened
I found myself fading

Writing Prompt from Reddit: Write two sides to the same story, one in Verse, one in Prose.

The Sunk Cost Fallacy is real

The Sunk Cost Fallacy – I know it’s nothing special, everybody experiences it, but it was only recently I discovered its name. It’s basically a name for when you keep doing something you don’t have to or shouldn’t do because you are already invested in it.

Anyway, I noticed that it’s something I’ve been going through a lot recently. I spent a lot of money on games on Steam – and even though they were cheap (I only ever buy games on discount or in bundles), I felt the need to complete them because I had already spent money to buy them. However, not all these games are good and when I play bad games, I end up wasting my time (which could be spent playing Dota 2 instead kek). While this doesn’t happen all the time, I do finish some of these bad games, which is often a mistake. I don’t get my money back when I play them, so I have literally no reason to play a game to completion if I don’t have fun doing it.

Now I’m not saying it’s a good thing to waste money, but all this could have been avoided by being careful with my money in the first place. I’ve learnt to cut off a lot of things in life due to the limited amount of free time I have. Life’s too short to waste – so make sure you do what makes you happy.

Driving Forty Five To See Fireworks On New Year’s Day

Isn’t it funny how music connects people? When two people enjoy music by the same band, they somehow forge a connection and have something new to talk about. For me, Ellegarden was one of those bands. Back then, I was dismissive of Japanese music – choosing not to listen to it because I didn’t understand Japanese lyrics. I couldn’t appreciate instrumental music or just melodies back then, the songs I listened to needed to have words in them. So I was surprised when I put on “New Year’s Day” after the recommendation of a friend.
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Cloudy Conversation Catalysts

Cigarettes are bad for your health. There’s no denying that, but if there’s one thing which I think cigarettes are great for – getting conversations going. Great conversations have started from someone asking for or offering someone a light or a stick. This little stick in your hand holds a lot of power. Sometimes it’s as simple as asking someone, “wanna go for a fag?” or saying “hey, you smoke too!”.

Maybe I’m imagining things but I think there’s some unspoken bond between smokers which makes it easy to strike up conversation. Be it talking about work, your night out, or just life in general – smoking seems to put people at ease and in a position where they can comfortably say what’s on their mind. Notice how smokes light up before they start talking about something heavy?

Smokers are also almost always nice enough to share their cigarettes with you. Even if you’re a complete brokeass stranger in a foreign land (true story).

Sure, not everybody enjoys smoking, and some people will even tell you off for doing so. But the number of people I’ve met who were annoyed by cigarettes is fewer than the number of people I’ve had great conversations with while smoking.

I’m not here to advocate smoking (do it if you want to, it’s your life) but it’s just something I’ve noticed since I picked it up.

Haven’t met many people through vaping yet, but I have received random high-fives from complete strangers which I thought was pretty weird. Nobody ever high-fived me for smoking.

PS After a while I decided, maybe what I’ve written is just my confirmation bias, and people who don’t touch cigarettes have just as interesting conversations.

PSS Also, it feels great to have one while it’s raining outside. Something about the cold, wet, miserable weather contrasting against the warm yet cooling sensation (if you smoke menthol) in your mouth.

The problem with importing a tablet

So over the Chinese New Year break I decided that I would get a new tablet for myself (and give my trusty old iPad 2 to Max). After some research online, I decided that the NVIDIA Shield Tablet K1 would be the one for me. In terms of price, performance, size and features, it seemed like a great option – especially the price tag (RM955 including shipping). It fit my budget, and it was an Android tablet – something I hadn’t owned before. After 3+ years of using the iPad 2, I figured it’d be a good experience to try an Android tablet.

I found the tablet on Amazon, checked out, got the SMS from my bank about my credit card being used and smiled to myself. What could go wrong?
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“Get out of here, shoo! You don’t belong here. Fuck off!”
“Look, I don’t know what you’re hopped up on and I don’t care, but I’ll call the cops if you show up here again.”

My vision blurry, I stumbled out of the club’s rear entrance, hands fumbling in the air for a wall to prop myself upon. Kids these days, don’t they know who you are? You’re the fucking boss! How dare they disrespect you? So what if you’re high as a kite, you can do whatever you want, it’s your establishment! Yeah! Don’t these kids dope too? Damn hypocrites. Not wanting to get into another scuffle with the bouncers, I decided to approach the club from a different direction.

I paused for a moment to catch my breath, then I reexamined my options – claiming to be the club’s owner didn’t seem to work and nobody seemed to believe me. It was going to be tough sneaking in because for some reason club security had tightened due to crime-related problems over the past few years. I didn’t have my phone with me, so it was impossible to make a call to my assistant who should be able to get me in with no issues and if I borrowed somebody’s phone, I wouldn’t have been able to call her because I didn’t remember her number.

I heard the sound of a large vehicle pulling up next to where I exited earlier tonight – it was the ice supplier! Great, here’s your chance to get into the club. I sneaked up to the driver’s side door and waited for him to open it. Just knock the driver the fuck out, put on his uniform and pretend to deliver ice. This was some Hitman-level shit. You’re a freaking genius! When he had half of his body out of the vehicle, I slammed the door onto him.

However, in my current condition, my door slam translated into a mere thud against the burly-sized driver who got out of the truck with a confused and annoyed look on his face. “The fuck is wrong with you?” were the last words I heard as I felt my body slammed against the side of his truck.

Ouch. He hurt us. In the distance, sirens approached. Not long after, I felt arms lift me into the back of a vehicle.

The following day, the papers read “Escaped Metal Asylum Patient Finally Found – Sneaking Into His Own Club!”. Oh boy, now it wasn’t just the voices in my head who were laughing at me.

Writing Prompt from Reddit: Foreshadow the ending of your prompt within the first five sentences, but make it so subtle that it’ll still be a surprise.

(Circling) Parking Spots

If there’s one thing I can’t stand when I’m in a car in a parking lot – it has to be drivers who go around in circles looking for the ‘perfect spot’ to park in. You know where’s the perfect spot? Any fucking spot. Anything is better than circling a lot for 30 mins just to find some place that’s closer to the entrance because for some reason you can’t walk more than 10 meters to the mall. Seriously. It annoys me to no end. It inconveniences other people (because parking lots usually have narrow lanes that don’t allow cars to overtake) and the time you spend circling the parking lot could be used being productive.

You know what’s the best way to find a parking spot? Drive down to the lowest floor. Because many people in Malaysia seem obsessed about finding spots on the higher floor for some strange reason. A lot of the times, these people create jams inside malls looking for spots to park in. I think it’s a worse offense than parking in handicapped spots. At least those guys don’t hold up traffic for no reason. So, just go all the way down and chances are you’ll find plenty of places to park in. It’s a great tip which works in every mall except during public holidays (when you should be avoiding such places in the first place).

You park your car faster, you spend less time in it, more time doing whatever you need to do, and you can even leave the mall within 15 minutes if you’re fast enough. Also, you don’t hold up people behind you. You’ll make someone else’s day. Don’t be a dick, walk a bit, it doesn’t hurt.