When you can't live without bananas

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Saturday, November 23, 2002


It's not very nice having a cherished illusion, held for almost 2 and a half years, shattered.

20 months. A lie.

No matter, I have Blue Bear.

Meanwhile, I'm awaiting my calming cup of herbal tea.
Happened to strike up a conversation with someone over WinMX, who wanted my "Bounty Hunter's Pursuit".

His theory on why Japanese have big eyes in Anime:

"they have big eyes to signify themselfs and small eyes for americans. they truely think americans are beutiful while they are ugly that is why they have the eye thing

yep that is what i read from one of the most famous anime creators he wrote that the eye thing was what he learned in school for art so he just kept doing it like he learned"
Work of a true blue looney bin:

Satan's Beasts Terrorists Of Singapore Since 1995......

"Apart from all other weapons used, I call this as �beasts voodoo weapon� like the voodoo doll. With it these Satan�s pariahs beasts terrorists are hitting people at any part of the body while they can be at any position. Even at the sole of the foot! While a person is sitting pinning the bum! Piercing the eyes! There are thousands of unheard torture!
When that happens how is one going to explain that it is the work of the Satan�s pariahs.

Done by both Satan�s pariahs males and females beasts terrorists of Singapore on both females and males. (inserted on 5 Nov) From their �muscle men� and �blood suckers� teams also, learnt that from their transmission! (end of insertion)

Inserted on 25 Oct 2002.
Satan�s pariahs beasts terrorists knew and will know what is going to take place in Singapore and the rest of the world and than acts according to their objectives and benefit for years.
Well how the people of the world feel about this!!
Now aren�t these Satan�s pariahs beasts terrorists more than deadly, as the name I call them by!!
All details will be covered in my book/e-book!!
(end of insertion)

They are all Singaporean Tamils and some Indians from
Ministry of Home Affairs and maybe other Ministries of Singapore
only those who are involved)! There is more info as you read on.

Inserted on 9th Sept 2002
Satan�s pariahs beasts terrorists � on 8 Sept 2002 � while I was facing the computer in my room for minutes marked my white t-shirt at where the heart is with a red leaser or whatever as a dot � these beasts were likely at Blk 215 (and /or the two beside blocks including surrounding blocks - you will find my address at, �Overview�) � will not be surprised they were also at Blk 218 the block I stay at and which is opposite � all these beasts are involved in all the activities. They are around everyday or take turns to be at several blocks or the surrounding. You will also find them around wherever I go!
Which department or departments of the Ministry of Home Affairs (and / or Ministries) have this weapon? (end of insertion).

I have also e-mailed informing of the now deactivated (on 26th August 2002) web site to PM Goh Chok Tong (goh_chok_tong@pmo.gov.sg) requesting him to take action, c.c. to Chief of Defense LG Lim Chuan Poh (lim_chuan_poh@mindef.gov.sg & mfu@starnet.gov.sg) and Commissioner of Police Khoo Boon Hui (khoo_boon_hui@spf.gov.sg) of Singapore. This was sent at August or earlier, 2002. Obviously looks like they did not receive it! What would have happened?

Inserted on 24 May 2002.
In the local newspaper, Straits Times (Singapore) at the late 1990�s (exact date can be easily be checked) had an article about what the officers or operatives of an intelligence department of a country were doing. If in doubt please check with the Straits Times. Please do.
Up and down a busy boulevard (at their country) the said personnel were spraying water into the ears of innocent people from water spray containers. Later the water was to be substituted with liquid poison.

"Satan's pariahs (Tamils and a few Indians from Ministry of Home Affairs and maybe other Ministries; only those involved) beasts terrorists (created by Satan) if you have the guts (since you been operating from 1995 -inserted on 26 April 2002) send a Letter Declaring War on Singapore and other countries (including USA) also stating that you want me in the front line (I look forward) to the Prime Minister!" - Ron Doray

I have a pair of silver kris. Each one and half feet long. The handles are hand carved. They are mounted and covered by thin glass. Chances are you may have never seen this before.
A majestic sight.
I got them in the 1980's. Now putting it up for the next owner.
View to offer.
Or if anyone likes an arrangement for me to buy back at an accepted price is also fine with me.
If You Like To Sponsor This Site. - This is 'outdated'. Inserted on 12 Nov 2002. Please go to 'Line Of Action' at Overview!
Just sent One Dollar to this address:
Blk 218 Lorong 8 Toa Payoh #13-625 Singapore 310218
With a self addressed envelope for a receipt.
Thank you for sponsoring this site in advance. Ron.
Again there is nothing to be afraid of if one abides by the Law.

With the prevailing condition since late last year good looking females are propelling this awareness. There numbers are slowly growing too. From all walks and apperances.
They have taken some blows as well from it.
Just that we have not communicated yet. Will soon.
You guys got to see the singles! Got to see the guys girlfriends and wives also. One can only say, can't be better!
Most times I have difficulty differentiating!"

Though among other parts, this makes me think it might be a parody:

"One thing it has done which has become a blessing in disguise is it cut off my past so called friends.
Well the truth I am happier with all the people that I am mentioning though we have yet to chat!
Another thing is since I am broke I am unable to be in the food center or go else where.
You folks got to see what happens when I am at the usual food center."

Friday, November 22, 2002


Can I interest you in a Planescape: Torment Ringtone? I hacked one out on Jurong Island but it sucked, so in desperation I imported the MIDI and modified it a little.


Ooo. Age of Mythology review.

"Remember how we said that returning Age of Kings players might do a double-take because of the graphics? That�s because the 3D is so good, it looks 2D. Nono� that�s not a bad thing, this is a Good Thing�. When 3D graphics get so smooth, detailed and realistic they look as impressive in screenshots as 2D � that�s saying something. Normally it�s just too easy to tell where the polygons are, how flat the lighting is and how poorly the textures on various body parts interact with each other. AOM�s 3D graphics have all the fluidity and motion of 3D, but they look as detailed as 2D units in screenshots."

One of my main gripes against 3D games addressed!


I feel like giggling now.

Hee hee hee. Hee hee hee. Hee hee hee hee.

Okay now I need to find something to do this weekend.

I talked to someone who sounds like Yaoi Girl. For some reason, she thought that comment uncomplimentary (and that without knowing what Yaoi was).


You got downgraded ah? [Me: How come you know? How come the whole unit knows?] You so cute what.

Finally visited the Esplanade today with Screwed Up Girl as a tour guide.

Nothing of note - except that there was this girl with a fractured pelvis - she kept jerking her hips as she walked.
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Last few days have been a positive deluge of work. Not even the fascinating, interesting, "ooh-this-tickles-me-elmo-on-pot" kind of work, but more like "dry-cleaning-the-big-bird-costume-by-hand" kind of drudgery. Still, once again the forces of Sloth have performed a Cannae-like maneuver - today I sluiced off some of my more menial tasks to the New Guy in my office (ah, seniority has its perks). And thusly, dear reader, I am free to entertain/bore you with another collegial rant.

"Just as the collected letters of Proust fill dozens of volumes, Dressler has stuffed Honig's Outlook Express in-box with e-mails totaling thousands of pages and spanning years. The writings of each man are a winding psychological journey, weaving experiences from his everyday life with memories from the distant past...."Clearly there is a higher purpose to these discursive ruminations," Honig said. "In describing in great detail the new dog his next-door neighbor just got or by writing about how he was tired and just drank three cups of coffee from the vending machine down the hall, Eric is seeking to rescue these moments from the clutches of the past. Proust had the same obsession with the inexorable passage of time.""

Last weekend was yet another quick, manic flitter-by down south for an interview. In the absence of any inspiration to structure this entry more imaginatively, will fall-back on tried and tested chronological order.


As usual, departed from work straight to the bus terminal at approx. 7:30pm, only this time was toting a sling bag instead of my usual utilitarian backpack. The sling bag was a result of my mother's excessively repeated exhortations to avoid rumpling the shirt and pants I had packed for my interview on Friday.

I've been taking the bus up and down the highway for years now, and I can never get over just how pilgrim-like it feels, at each terminal end. On the Malaysian side, in the Pudu Interchange, there is this constant flow of human fodder - circulating up and down the arteries of our nation's highways and by-ways. The interchange is old, grimy, and constantly punctuated by this odd, flinty smell of fuel oil, human waste, sweat and junk food. The semi-lit departure berths are filled with all kinds of people squatting restlessly, waiting for old, creaky buses to take them to places distant. There are merchants and stalls in almost every corner, peddling dried snacks, soft drinks, newspapers, and other assorted mamak wares. All of this always makes me feel like I'm in some kind of modern-day Samarkand; amidst caravanserai preparing for a distant sojourn. Too bad we're missing out on the camels, mercenary bodyguards, and bales of silk, but it's still the same, in many ways - people travelling up and down for trade, to visit families, to seek work, all the old, human reasons. And certainly the highways have their share of bandits (the local police, although, generally, buses don't get cozened for a bribe).

I suppose I'm lucky that I can find some touristy wonder in something that should be as prosaically familiar as a bus interchange.

There are pros and cons to taking an evening bus like this one. The obvious pro is that you can save an extra day by leaving right after work (as I did), it's generally easier to sleep in the night, and the highways are slightly less crowded. On the neg side, however, I can't read to kill time, and for some weird reason, they *never* show VCDs or other movies on evening/red-eye bus trips. (The express coaches usually have a TV embedded somewhere in the front to play pirated VCDs, for those unfamiliar with budget transport).

As usual, I spent about half my trip glued to the mobile phone, chatting. The other half was spent trying to sleep; difficult, given that I had taken a slightly crappier bus line this time round, one that I am normally leery of patronising given that their buses have terrible suspension. Unfortunately it was the only 7:30pm bus available at that time.

Being a veteran of the highway route, I am intimately familiar with the two rest-stops the buses pull in at along the way for toilet and meal breaks. The one I prefer is the brightly-lit monstrosity off the highway at Ayer Hitam. At least they serve something other than mixed rice; like hay mee or porridge. Mixed rice is a *trap* at these price-gouging hellholes - adding just one or two lumps of meat can effectively raise the cost of your meal by 50% (painful experience). The valuation of your conglomerate meal picked from various trays and dishes is performed by some professional aunty assayer who eyeballs your plate of rice, luncheon meat, assorted veg, and baked beans, and derives the final price from some exponentially weighted algorithm designed to rip you off. But after about 3 hours in a bus, one is in no position to complain about a little sustenance, however expensive.

And there's always this feeling of desolation, sitting in a rest stop, idly smoking over the remains of a meal, watching bus after bus disgorge their human cargo ad infinitum. People taking a few days off from their salaried serfdom in the city to visit their relations back in the villages and kampungs they left for a "better life". Students going back to their families for a few days. Supervisors travelling up to out-of-state factories. Auditors going to distant, out-station business sites. Hitchhikers on shoestring budgets. Salespeople, foremen, factory workers, students, housewives, travelers, all passing transitory. Sic transit gloria humanitas... What was that line from Miller? "Funny, y'know? After all the highways, and the trains, and the appointments, and the years, you end up worth more dead than alive."

"He had the wrong dreams. All, all wrong."

Anyway, they always sell steamed peanuts and corn at these places; a necessary snack for the rest of the journey. While watching the parking lot crammed with tour buses, I have this vague impression that I'm in a scene, an episode on a television screen filmed in washed-out palettes, perhaps the X-Files, with its familiar, opening onscreen note at the bottom left corner in Courier font text going:

9:37 PM

Anyway, the rest of the trip was just languish, watch trucks roll by, note disappointingly the absence of any chio hitchhikers on the bus this trip round, and finally arrive at the JB Causeway at approx. midnight (FYI, the buses down from KL almost always go through the first causeway, because about half the passengers on any trip disembark at JB. The few lines that go straight to Singapore via the Senai-Tuas 2nd Link cost far more, and pick up from weirdly located hotels.). As usual, there was a thrill of fear at Singaporean-side customs due to the six or seven pirated CDs stuffed down the side pockets of my cargo pants. And as usual, I was waved past with nary a glance; just another weary traveller; part of the steaming biomass being pumped back and forth to be processed by two different national economies; simultaneously a cog in a machine(as part of the financial economy), a victim to be exploited (as a consumer), and a resource to be squeezed (as a worker enriching an employer).

Snuck off at Woodlands - I wonder just how long the bus (which terminates its route at Golden Mile Complex) waited for me. Some drivers take the precaution of counting first just how many people are getting off at Woodlands and how many at Golden Mile. This bus driver didn't; and given that I invariably shove off at Woodlands itself, I wonder just how far they go when they take a headcount after customs and find a passenger missing... Probably they just shrug their shoulders and drive off.

Took a cab down to my assigned quarters for the night. As some of you may know, my mendicant trips down to Singapore are usually carried out in a nomadic, "so who wants to put me up tonight?" fashion - you poor sods. It was a little tricky finding a place on Thursday night, given that my peer group no longer thinks of November / December as holiday or exam time but, rather, as just another working month. However, one of my kinder associates at Serangoon Gardens took me in at 1:30am in the morning - despite having to go back to Tengah Base at 7:30am.

First time at this guy's house, and it's *old*. The floor tiles were of this style I haven't seen in years - which some of you might be familiar with. It's this smooth, granite composite, usually pale cream in colour, but embedded with conglomerate stones - so the mix looks like a bunch of rocks swimming in a beige pool. No ceramic finishing or glaze; just bare, cold rock beneah your feet. It's the kind you still see in those old apartments around the Joo Chiat Rd / East Coast Rd block. Apparently it's due for renovation soon (more bomb shelter issues), but my friend's the Spartan kind; his room comprises little more than a mattress on the floor, a few bookshelves, a drum set in one corner, and a PC. Walls devoid of decoration. A study desk with nothing but CDs, scattered stationery and stacks of academic notes. Disturbingly, all of his books are old textbooks.

Hadn't caught up with him for a while, but I could see he was in no mood to talk for long. So we just exchanged the usual convival cigarette outside the gates, and headed off to sleep with little further preamble. I pride myself on travelling light, but it's always disorienting to have to set up all manner of paraphernalia upon travel - hunting for a power point to plug in phone charger, arranging toothbrush and razor (the only toiletries I require) in an accessible location, folding up clothes and piling them neatly in unfamiliar cupboards or on unfamiliar surfaces, possibly surfing the net on an unfamiliar PC where even the arrangement of shortcuts unsettles you. It's the little things like finding your way through an unfamiliar bedroom in the dark, or how the contours of the bed (or, in some cases for me, chair, sofa, carpet, gorilla nest, or horizontal surface) one sleeps on isn't quite the same. Clearly I lack adaptability skills.

Okay. Shall continue later. Am busy organizing the few trinkets I have recieved from colleagues who just went travelling; a pair of carved chopsticks in an embroidered holder from Thailand, a pack of mini-sized playing cards from Xi'an (each card decorated with a depiction of a terracotta warrior or sculpture), and an odd little Japanese beanbag ninja, cunningly weighted so that it always lands on its base. Ah, what master engineers the Japanese are.

Currently the chopsticks are positioned on top of my PC monitor, with the rear-ends protruding over the edge like a gangplank, while the ninja stands precariously at the end, performing the crane stance. (Or it would, if it had limbs - it's basically two beanbag-filled spheres on top of one another, swaddled in ninja clothes, with two painted dots as eyes.)

Usual commentary on tracker stats.

The most used keyword by unique visitors descrending on this blog via search engine is, unsurprisingly, "Singapore", occuring in 2.39% of searches. The second most common word is "nude" - 1.88%.

And today's usual weirdness includes "strange plastic drinkware" (A Tupperware fetishist?), "kansas city bbq connectin" (Yup, we're allll good ole farmboys), and "wilting sound wav" (???), amidst the usual assortment of sex and zaogeng.

Comments to the G-Man.

Firstly, the technical distinction between pornography is that it involves flagrant nudity meant to titillate for sexual purposes, whereas tasteful nudity, say, a Botticelli nude, is simply artistic depiction of the nude human form. However, in an era of scrotal infusion and Lego pornography, everything turns *someone* on in some way or another. And of course, the role of sex in what Irvine Welsh calls "the commodification of transgression" Check out that link - very good interview. After all, what is MTV, pro wrestling, and most modern reality TV other than a way of turning the perverse, outre, and bizarrely alternative cultures into simply another cash cow?

Secondly, as I told you, racial harmony only exists as long as one is in camp seeing the same guy day after day. One odd form of (benign?) racism I've noticed is how one can be pretty good friends with individuals "of differing ethnicity", while disliking or holding prejudices towards their race as a whole.

Thirdly, I'm not hated as a person; simply as a provider of irritating opinions and as rants on a screen. Most people operate on assumptions about my personality based on what I write and the manner in which I present my ideas (telling, but not the complete picture, methinks). You're hated as a real, breathing, sack of protoplasm.
Word of the day is: "quodlibetical"

Am carefully tapping away blog entry. In the meantime...

Actual Analogies and Metaphors Found in College Entrance Essays & Writing Exams

* Her face was a perfect oval, like a circle that had its two other sides gently compressed by a Thigh Master.

* His thoughts tumbled in his head, making and breaking alliances like underpants in a dryer without Cling Free.

* She grew on him like she was a colony of E. coli and he was room-temperature Canadian beef.

* She had a deep, throaty, genuine laugh, like that sound a dog makes just before it throws up.

* Her vocabulary was as bad as, like, whatever.

* He was as tall as a six-foot-three-inch tree.

* The revelation that his marriage of 30 years had disintegrated because of his wife's infidelity came as a rude shock, like a surcharge at a formerly surcharge-free ATM.

* The little boat gently drifted across the pond exactly the way a bowling ball wouldn't.

* McBride fell 12 stories, hitting the pavement like a Hefty bag filled with vegetable soup.

* From the attic came an unearthly howl. The whole scene had an eerie, surreal quality, like when you're on vacation in another city and Jeopardy comes on at 7:00 p. m. instead of 7:30.

* Her hair glistened in the rain like nose hair after a sneeze.

* The hailstones leaped from the pavement, just like maggots when you fry them in hot grease.

* Long separated by cruel fate, the star-crossed lovers raced across the grassy field toward each other like two freight trains, one having left Cleveland at 6:36 p.m. traveling at 55 mph, the other from Topeka at 4:19 p.m. at a speed of 35 mph.

* They lived in a typical suburban neighborhood with picket fences that resembled Nancy Kerrigan's teeth.

* John and Mary had never met. They were like two hummingbirds who had also never met.

* He fell for her like his heart was a mob informant and she was the East River.

* Even in his last years, Grandpappy had a mind like a steel trap, only one that had been left out so long, it had rusted shut.

* Shots rang out, as shots are wont to do.

* The plan was simple, like my brother-in-law Phil. But unlike Phil, this plan just might work.

* The young fighter had a hungry look, the kind you get from not eating for a while.

* "Oh, Jason, take me!"; she panted, her breasts heaving like a college freshman on $1-a-beer night.

* He was as lame as a duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck, either, but a real duck that was actually lame. Maybe from stepping on a land mine or something.

* The ballerina rose gracefully en pointe and extended one slender leg behind her, like a dog at a fire hydrant.

* He was deeply in love. When she spoke, he thought he heard bells, as if she were a garbage truck backing up.

* Her eyes were like limpid pools, only they had forgotten to put in any pH cleanser.

* She walked into my office like a centipede with 98 missing legs.

* It hurt the way your tongue hurts after you accidentally staple it to the wall.

* She was as easy as the TV Guide crossword.

Wednesday, November 20, 2002


I tried F&N 'Freaky' Fruitade one day some weeks ago. The first time I tried it was at Farrer Market back when I was living in Tulip Garden and I thought then that it was the most repellent drink I'd ever tasted. Not so now, because I've drunk shallowly of the swill that is Dr Pepper. Jason, who used to promote the drink, said that it's flavoured with apple and banana, and after a while, I managed to detect the artificial banana flavour. I think he thought it okay, but Shao Chuan didn't, as he spat out the sip he took from my can =)


NS boys like to set pictures of women as their wallpaper. Usually they're scantily clad, so while they excite the hormones, they aren't indecent enough to pass for porn. However, I saw the wallpaper of one computer at the medical centre. It had a Japanese woman who was wearing only a white robe, which wasn't closed in front, but which covered her shoulders and her breasts. Well, much of her breasts - the sides were exposed, and - [mock] horror - part of her nipple could be seen. Time to charge someone :)

Actually the distinction between porn and pictures meant to heaten the blood of men is rather contrived and arbitrary. After all, both have the same intention, so who's to say that a mere peek of a brown protrusion automatically makes something Pornography, while covering it moves it back up into the realm of legality? Ridiculous.


We left camp at about 1+ today to go to... Jurong Library. We've to hand up a book review next week, but it beats being in camp! And we fell out at 4:05pm or so too. My first choice of book was The Satanic Verses, but they didn't have it there, so I'll just have to read one of the two copies I have at home on my own time. War and Peace wasn't available at that branch. After that, I happened across a Romance Novel, the sort my sister reads, about single women in their late twenties to late thirties wanting a man, but I changed my mind later. The last one I thought of was this year's Man Booker prize winner, but all copies were on loan or reserved. Well. So much for my attempt to investigate pretentious/'good'/acclaimed books for a change. The book I finally chose to review is not actually the one I borrowed - Marion Zimmer Bradley's Mists of Avalon, as I don't think I'll be able to finish it in a week, let alone in 3.

My trip to the library must have been really taxing, for I feel very drained now. But then that might have something to do with the lectures we medics got this morning about bucking up and forthcoming punishments if we transgressed regarding minor rules even and my helping out in our rehearsal of setting up of a Bronco BCS for the Chief of Medical Corps' visit tomorrow.

During the aforementioned, I saw Qingru and Melvin. The former had a nametag which said "Qing Ru". Lucky him. We didn't have much time to catch up as they had to run off with a mob of people to the Armour Training Centre, probably for a course, but Qingru said he was a CQ (Company Quartermaster)

Yong Siang thought that the Polar Bear on my shirt was a Koala Bear. Maybe I should bring both to show him ;)


[CO on The Economist] Wah. This is good.

[On the pictures of Kimberly the Pink Ranger on my bunk cupboard] I prefer the one from season one. That one is better.
I really must try Procter & Gamble's Ariel Soap Powder one day, in part to compensate for the brainless Arab boycott. Support Ariel Sharon by buying Ariel Soap Powder! 10% of the proceeds goes to the fund to establish settlements in the West Bank...

The Johor State Government is too free again! This time they're chiding shopping centres which have put up Christmas decorations for being insensitive because Hari Raya is before Christmas. Ma-laysia boleh!

Naomi Klein got savaged in the Economist. Poisoning the well, it was, but funny anyhow. Hehe, I must get around to reading "No Logo" one day.

Yechao didn't know what a smoothie was. Sigh.

M1 is evil. They charge $10 for each session you change one or more of the numbers for the "Family and Friends" service.

As usual, whenever someone suggests that NS be extended to women, some woman, leery of the thought of having to be a slave, will write in to the Forum and protest that women do NS too. Their form of NS apparently includes rearing children, cooking and acting as maids and caring for the family, and since men don't help, women have done their NS. Right. So if medically fit (non-PES E, shall we say) women choose not to bear children, or give them up for adoption, or neglect their 'duties' in some other way, we shall throw them into Detention Barracks for not performing their National Service! Those who hire foreign maids and don't do any housework should likewise be thrown into the slammer. Also, some man also wrote in to say that NS would delay childbearing and make our already precipitous birth rate drop further. Well, if someone wants or doesn't want children, I think NS would hardly be a factor.

[Luckily someone wrote in to dispel her sophistry. His parting shot: "By the way, Ms Wee neglected to mention that it takes a little contribution by the men to the women before conception takes place. So if her argument holds, Singaporean males would have served NS twice." A tad awkward, but effective.]

In the same day's issue, I also saw Mr Fatmonky writing in about lifelong learning and the government's overemphasis on O and A level results. Hehe.

I must get down to slamming the lamentable standard of "Chinese" in Singapore soon. That better not be rejected, as the letter a friend, err, sent in about racial harmony in NS was.

There was this show on "TPI", probably an Indonesian channel, where some Women and Men of Malay stock (90% of the former in tudungs, naturally, and maybe 60% of the latter on songkoks) were singing a cacophonic dirge. The women all looked dead or possessed. Maybe they were dead eyed because they were wearing the symbol of their subjugation and inferiority to men.

Women's Lib in the 60s had bra-burning. Maybe the women's lib of the 00s will have tudung burning!

I was discussing with someone why PJ Girl's friends hate both of us so much.

I think it's because we're both more outspoken, while they like to loiter in the background and keep their views to themselves. Clever lot, but not very vocal.

I'm disliked more, but apparently that's only because they've seen me in "action" ;)

Not going to name (nick)names here, hee hee.
Rejected Forum letters:

"Re: NS a social distillery for ethnic cohesion

National Service has always been lauded as a medium for ethnic bonding. Indeed, this is borne out by tales of NSmen acquiring lifelong friends after their 2 or 2 and a 1/2 year stint in the Singapore Armed Forces.

Anecdotal evidence, gathered from some casual observation and interminable NS Stories shared by relations and bosom friends suggests, however, that there are ways to further enhance ethnic bonding during our young men's service to the nation.

One can't help but suspect that race is one criterion in allocating NSmen to their units. I have never seen any Malays or Muslims in the Air Force, Navy, Commandos, Artillery and Armour, and the veracity of this fact is confirmed by some of my brother's friends. A Malay friend of a friend of mine was very keen to enter the Navy, and told the interviewers that he did not mind eating non-Halal food since Halal food was not served in the Navy, but he wasn't accepted in the end. At most, there is a token Malay presence in these wings. In addition, senior Malay Officers are hard to find, though this might be due to the fact that fewer Malays choose to sign on in the Army.

The preponderance of Malays in other areas is also unhealthy. I understand that the Singapore Police Force and Civil Defence Force are overwhelmingly composed of Malays. In fact, a bus I was in once passed the Civil Defence Academy. Of the 20 or so SCDF personnel who got on the bus, all but 2 were Malay. I have great faith in our Malay brothers - in their ability to keep the streets safe and to save our fellow countrymen from burning buildings, but I am equally confident that, if there were a war, they'd leap unhesitatingly to the Defence of Singapore.

Once NSFs ORD and return to the Outside World, they also lose touch with their friends from other racial groups, and fall back into theeir usual racial cliques. Also, racist jokes are commonly exchanged between NSmen when the race in question is not present. They may be meant lightheartedly, but still this is testament to how racial bonding needs to be encouraged further.

Perhaps the supreme irony of the article was that it showed an APC, whose tracks spelled 'Ethnic Cohesion', steaming along. I don't think there were any Malays in that APC. "

Sexism in the Bible:

Ephesians 5:22-33 :: New American Standard Bible (NASB)

"Marriage Like Christ and the Church

Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord.
For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body. But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.... Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband."

Luckily most of us aren't too restricted by the Letter of it. The socio-political-econo-historical context must always be remembered - just like how Islam, in its day, was actually rather tolerant and generous towards women.

[Ed: Dec 1st:

Addendum: "Ephesians is not a letter written to Western marriages! It is a letter written to Christians who were living in a culture where marriage was a type of slavery. Young teens were wedded to middle-aged men in order to bear them a legal heir. It is difficult for us to imagine the level of degradation and hopelessness these young wives must have experienced... perhaps more than the slaves. Paul was not intending to set up gender hierarchy in marriage in these passages any more than he was endorsing slavery by encouraging slaves to submit to their masters. He was simply referring to the slavery and male headship that was already a part of their secular culture."]
Oh my goodness. Power Rangers has just topped itself, when I thought it had already reached its nadir in goofiness a long time ago (and had since become better). This is the most improbable Deus Ex Machina I've ever seen.

Excerpt from episode transcript:

"Back at the warehouse, Moleman has the laser moved into firing position... Suddenly, a wall suspiciously covered with a ton of empty cardboard boxes gets blown up from behind!... a forklift was driven into the warehouse. The driver becomes revealed, it's Grandma Winslow, in hockey gear! What's most amusing about this, is Granny gasps upon seeing Kelsey there. Either she accidentally drove the forklift into the wall herself (which makes the most sense), or she discovered the Batlings converging on this location and decided to take matters into her own hands, much like her granddaughter did... Moleman orders the Batlings to destroy the Ranger, Granny yells for them to stay away from her. She whips out her hockey stick and hits the gas, plowing into the warehouse with a mighty "Kiyaa!" Vypra suddenly regains her mental composure and orders, "Attack!" Have I mentioned how useless she is today? It's very sad when the Batlings are doing more useful tasks than your main villainess. Moleman covers his eyes with his paws, whining about how this isn't happening, his work being threatened yet again. Granny Winslow drives the forklift into the Batlings, and swats at a few with her hockey stick. This frees Kelsey, who gets back to the hand to hand combat with them (it appears Kels is as senile as her grandmother when it comes to remember things, like Morphing). More fighting, the Batlings swarm all over Granny, but she bats them off. Finally, Granny heads towards the laser (notice Vypra is standing in the way, and then vanishes, apparently not only do demons fear water, they fear people pulling a Fugitive Alien on them and trying to kill them with a forklift!) and bashes the forklift into the machine. This causes heavy damage, and causes Granny to laugh like a wicked witch. Moleman hops up and down whining about how she's going to pay for that. He hits her, knocking her out of the seat. Or so it appears, as suddenly Granny is about ten feet high, landing on top of a Batling as she falls. She then snatches his sword and begins to stab the crap out of him with it. Kelsey is concerned, but has her hands full with Batling problems as it is."

Someone's comments:

"This was a good episode up until that ridiculous old woman showed up in that silly armor, fighting off Batlings, and pretty much saving the day. What were they thinking? This ranks right down there with Grandma Matchmaker from Power Rangers in Space."
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