Tuesday, February 28, 2006


So we're bidding for a project today which, if we do get it, will completely scuttle my March holiday plans. When will you know if you got the bid, the husband asks. Well we meet the client for the second round today. Which will probably be the last round. So you'll know today? he asks.

No dude. Even if we're successful, it's not like the client will stand up and punch the air and scream YEAAH!!! They'll probably be really quiet about it, and then send us an email later in the week. We're bidding for their legal work you know, we're not stripping and dancing for them.

Then I laughed and laughed at my own joke. Like I'm starting to do alot nowadays. It's good to know that I still make me laugh, even now.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Laughed so hard I hurt myself



Gah! Help!

Of all the items on my bedside table that present the most temptation to The Son, the most ravishing one seems to be the aircon remote control. Next is the Snoopy Nightlight which he will probably get round to smashing in a month or two, but that's not the subject of this entry. I think this aircon remote control unit could possibly be the most sought after aircon remote control in the world.

Such being the case, we usually restrict his access to the aircon remote control until such a time as nothing else could possibly please him. Also coz it's got a glass display panel. For now, it is the Holy Grail of baby distractions.

So about a week ago, we had to resort to handing him the said aircon remote to get him to stay still while we changed a particularly well-used diaper (no hands to hold him down when we are covering our noses). The fat little baby thumbs twiddled, the baby fingers poked, the baby teeth clamped down.... and he managed to change the thermostat reading from Celcius to Fahrenheit. Not, mind you, that there is actually a button there (that I can find) which offers this option.

The Husband and I each had a crack at trying to change it back (me more desperately than the Husband, since he actually prefers Fahrenheit) and neither of us can figure out how on earth he managed to do that.

We should have noticed this when we took the remote back from him the other day - I saw that the thermostat reading was about 66 degrees and thought he was just trying to roast us all to death - but really we're not that quick thinking, generally speaking.

Does anyone out there happen to know how to recalibrate a McQuay Air Conditioning Remote Control Unit from Fahrenheit to Celcius? I'm too old to get acquainted with a new temperature measurement, even if it's just for the bedroom aircon.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Would you rather go hunting with Dick Cheney or driving with Ted Kennedy?

Thursday, February 23, 2006


Faced down my nemesis today at a seminar.

Which is to say I spoke on a topic which I had spoken on before at another seminar, and at which the reviews couldn't be worse. I SUCKED at it the last time I spoke on this topic. The only thing the audience didn't do was throw things at me.

I could say it's a difficult topic because it covers a diverse range of issues, most of the current legislation in vogue doesn't actually apply here but everyone keeps getting worried so people want to hear about this topic.

The difficulty is making it relevant. Keeping it real. Nobody really wants to hear about the SOX regulations and yet they feel they need to hear about it because it might be relevant (it isn't - it doesn't apply to companies which are not listed in the US or which have derivatives listed in the US). But the people want to know. Oh well.

Armed with a completely written-out speech and the Ghosts of Seminars Past, I took on the same topic today before a mix of lawyers, accountants and business people. The mike didn't work properly, the thing to move the slides didn't work at all and I was stressed out and showing it. Somehow I came to the end of my speech. Then stared at a room full of big big eyes. And then went back to my seat. Silence and crickets. The chairperson said, "Well, let's take a coffee break. Be back in 20 mins." And then there was applause. Soft at first, then louder. Then everyone filed out for coffee and chit chat.

For the rest of today (and possibly the next week until I get the feedback statistics) I'll be wondering if:

1. the applause was for (a) me; (b) the chairperson; (c) the coffee; (d) politeness;
2. I sucked again;
3. it would be possible for me to break into Asia Business Forum's office and burn all the feedback forms; or
4. I sucked again.

Received the feedback forms for the previous seminar and bent my boss' ear about it something fierce. The seminar organiser called to say I had gotten the highest rating of all the speakers.

20 "Excellent", 10 "Very Good" and 7 "Good/ Fair".

A total of 37 feedback forms.

I wanted to ask the seminar person who were the 7 who gave me the "Good/ Fair". Also, where they live (and will they be missed if they stopped showing up for work). To be fair, I was happy about it for about 5 minutes before the voices in my head pointed out that 7 out of 37 is almost one-quarter. Twenty-five percent of the participants thought I was Good/ Fair.

Which really means Average.

The boss says my personality type should consider a progressive reduction in speaking engagements where feedback documentation is involved.

Which is his usual polite way of saying that he thinks I'm psycho.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006


Og. Og. Goof. Og.

Not so long ago, I was staring at some other toddler babbling baby talk in disbelief whilst the toddler's mom tells me, "Oh! [ ___ ] just said that the rain in Spain falls mainly on the plain! He also confirmed that Jupiter is the fifth planet from the Sun and its mass is 318 times that of Earth! So clever!"

Well. I could have sworn that all I heard was ig. goo. gaaaa. ba baba. Maybe it's the voices in your head that you're hearing, sweetie.

Now it's my turn to interpret the wise babblings of my own toddler. What on earth is Og. Goof. Og? While my ears tell me it is what it is, my maternal instincts say that he is probably predicting that our next General Elections will be held soon, and the PAP is going to win by a landslide. Not exactly rocket surgery to figure that out, but I can't fault him on logic. His grammar is a little off, but what can I expect. After all, Einstein had speech defects too.

Part of me knows that, since he said it whilst staring and pointing at the neighbour's German Shepherd, he was probably trying to say "DOG. WOOF. DOG." But there must be a deeper meaning. Come on.

Friday, February 17, 2006

My Dream Job

At the ripe old age of x, I have finally decided what my dream job would be. Not what my dream job really would be if I wanted to annoy my mother/ ex-boyfriends, etc. but My Real Dream Job.

(a little drumroll for effect)

..... IN-HOUSE LEGAL AT CHANEL!!! Or Prada. Or Yves St Laurent. With special assistance to the Creative Director. Whatever. Take me! I'll work for whatever you'll pay! So long as every year, I get to pick out 5 new outfits as my bonus. One of which must be haute couture, i.e. moulded to fit my cute little butt and only my cute little butt.

My inner voice keeps whispering ... this is so shallow. uhh uhh. this is so shallow. uhh uhh (inner voice is currently listening to Gorillaz "Feel Good etc")

Shallowness be damned. Some people find brain surgery fulfilling. Other people quit their jobs to do charity work. My passion is a Chanel suit, complete with the gold chain sewn into the inside bottom seams of the jackets (so that the jacket hangs like a dream). What's wrong with that?!?

Met an audit partner from one of the Big Five audit firms once. Gave him my namecard, exchanged job descriptions, etc. and I was starting in on my 'well, how about you give my firm some more work' spiel, with some light client name-dropping when he stopped me in my tracks.

"We do work for Chanel" says he, slightly inebriated.

"Wow! Really! That's very interesting. Do you handle their audits yourself?" sez me, momentarily forgetting to tripod.

"Yeah. I do their stock-takes."

"Wow! Really! So you get to see all their warehouse stock!"

"Well, yes, but we also help them deal with excess stock."


"No, I help them to DESTROY the excess stock. I have to pick up their shears and help them to cut up the suits."

"You... cut up Chanel suits?" Oh God.. I've met the Antichrist.

"Yes, the skirt, the jacket, the blouse, the ..."

At this point, I had to turn away and look down into my drink. Couldn't help it. I was seriously about to cry. If I was his audit assistant, I would have stabbed him with my shears, grabbed a bunch of suits (preferably black, cream or dark blue, size XS) and started running.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Local Boy Urges Vehicle to Move

Parents of a baby boy were amazed and delighted at 7.10 a.m. this morning when their 11-month old son urged a vehicle passing outside their house to move.

"I was asleep when it occurred," says Smoot, the 22-year old mother of the child. "To think, if he hadn't slapped me on the eye, I could have missed this life-altering event completely."

Machine, the father of the child, left the house for work shortly thereafter but was said to be ecstatic over his son's achievements.

Astounded observers re-enacted the scene repeatedly, pointing at passing cars and stating "Go Car Go. Go Go Go. Go Car Go."

Analysts say that the child was predicting not just the continued forward motion of the vehicle this morning but also the decrease of COE prices in Singapore this quarter. Given that the said vehicle did in fact continue moving forward immediately after his statement, experts remain very optimistic about the outlook of COE prices this year.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Outspeak, Outstay, Out-Tripod

Went on a rampage this morning. The competitive gene just took over and ran amok. Managed to:

1. Get my hands on materials of the 2 persons speaking after me at the seminar and cover their topics as well;

2. Point out (in advance) some errors in their speaking material, so the listening audience knows what errors they are going to make this afternoon when they speak; and

3. Sit through the earlier speaker's entire presentation so that I could adjust the tone and pitch of my voice to sound more interesting than him. Also re-answered some questions from the audience that they had asked him.

I have to stop doing this. Am still obsessing about yesterday's lecture as well as this morning's speech. If I haven't stopped replaying and rephrasing everything in my head (including the jokes) by this evening, then I'm going to need a strong drink (or three).

Gah!!! Just remembered there was one joke where the audience failed to laugh.

Monday, February 13, 2006

The Sound that Sparked Off a Million Comments (well, 31)

Just met Squee in the loo. She looks sleepy and kind of pinched in the face. Kind of a disappointment after all that ruckus and not just over her noisy breast pump.

Being competitive as always, I took a quick peek at her bottle and was amazed and disgusted to note that she had just expressed 7 pints. I mean, 7 ounces (I always refer to them as pints - it's such an internal joke that nobody laughs not even me).

Gave my 2nd lecture ever today at NUS to a bunch of under- and post-grads. Not sure how it came off this year but I hope I haven't completely ruined the interest of yet another generation in corporate work. We'll see when it comes to the tutorial how well the information has actually filtered through. Actually I can't stop obsessing about how I performed and whether the lecture was okay and whether everyone understood what I was trying to say and whether I could have said it better and what else could I have said .... ....

The internal voice of doubt never shuts up. Never. Doesn't matter how many pop-psychology-self-help books I read. Just can't get it to shut up. It's driving me batshit.

Will give another seminar tomorrow and just hope that my competitive gene doesn't really go into overdrive. There are 5 speakers, 58 attendees and 1 Smoot. AARRGH!!

Friday, February 10, 2006


I've been chasing deadline after deadline after deadline today and I'm beat. And kind of down. My mind is so frazzled that I don't even know why.

Wait. I remember now. We're bidding for a project and a consultant to the client (bah!) is putting in a strong recommendation for another firm. Which will quote and charge 5 times more but will the client be able to reason this out when the consultant is exerting influence like this?

Now I'll just have to kill him.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Don't make lunch appointments without checking with me

It sounds like something a boss would say. But it's not my boss, it's Fore! my erstwhile-sometime-long-ago-partner-in-crime. I'd link to his blog but that kind of handiwork would be too cool for me. Now that I have ceased to be available for after work drinks it's just meetings over weekday lunch for the 2 of us. If we want to keep in touch. Which we do. And, of course, this blog.

WHICH IS THE ORIGINAL PURPOSE OF MY KEEPING THIS BLOG - TO KEEP IN TOUCH WITH MY FRIENDS, not some random asshat. In case anyone was wondering. I do not put up with this shit - I'm not twenty-something anymore.

So, Fore!, let me know when you are free for lunch next week. And wish me good luck with the Wasabi Bistro double-bookings. I don't know if I can take 2 consecutive days of Rainbow Roll and Kumi's No. 1.

Monday, February 06, 2006





The poor woman who has to express milk in the executive bathroom every day with her super-secret-super-quiet Avent breast pump has no way of knowing that we can hear her even from outside the bathroom. Through 2 closed bathroom doors, no less. I would hazard a guess that they can hear her even in the men's loo.

Either she's doing severe damage to her milk glands (in certain circles, this is politely referred to as 'producing strawberry milk') or the regulator in that breast pump badly needs replacement. But how to tell her?

It's just the voices in your head

Something odd has happened to my office telephone, which is a problem I haven't encountered in years - we're getting old fashioned cross-lines again. People who call me hear another person (a man) talking on the phone, like it's a 3-way call. I can't hear it. If I hang up and call them back, then I get to hear another person (a woman) talking on the phone but the person I called can't hear it.

And it's not even a traditional cross-line where there's static and the other voice sounds like it's coming from far far away, this one is 'crystal clear'. Just like the Singtel tagline. Although I don't mean to be rude but I hope this is not what Singtel was referring to when they came up with that ad.

I told the first person who called me that this was just the voices in his head, and he should ignore them. Then it happened to the next person who called, and then the next. Chances are they're probably not all insane, although I wonder.

Anyway, Singtel seems to be taking our complaint seriously as they hope to be here by the end of the day. I hope so too. So does our office manager. We're a bunch of real hopeful people.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Hormones Schmormones

It actually seems worse now after I've had a baby. When the PMT hormones hit, I become a demon. A red veil descends and I'm not responsible for my actions thereafter.

Unfortunately the red veil descended yesterday when I was at the (bloody incompetent) hairdresser. Now I don't know whether they were just bloody incompetent or I was just insane. How to complain like that?

I called them days ago to make an appointment. Hair colouring, highlights, the works. They confirm, it's fixed. I called them yesterday, on a hunch, ten minutes before my appointment to reconfirm that I'm on my way. Getting The Works done within the space of a 2-hour lunch break is always tricky. The female voice that picks up the phone whispers.. huh? what appointment? what is your name? there is no appointment...

Undeterred (and without a lunch partner so I'm desperate now), I asked if I could just show up in 10 minutes and would they be able to accommodate. Yes, she said, with a faint smile in her voice, just come. I tell her my name so no imposter with needy hair can sneak in and steal my slot.

So should I have been surprised and disappointed when I show up and no one seems to know what appointment I'm talking about? All I see is an open appointment book with no entries against the timeslot and one blur hairdresser asking another blur hairdresser if she has any recollection of an appointment under this name. Everyone is wide eyed and shaking their heads. It's like moving around underwater. But through the thick fog of ineptitude, they smile and say, never mind, sit down anyway.

After a discussion of what I need done, I ask the all-important question - how long does this take? She scrunches her pretty little brow, looks at my hair and says, one and a half hours. Great! Let's do it!

Two hours later, I ask again. How long more do you need? She scrunches her pretty little brow (it's a different brow, belonging to a different girl) and says, another twenty minutes, at least. The red veil comes down.


She looks at me, the mouth opens, nothing comes out, she drops the lock of hair she's holding and wanders off. Comes back with the original brow bearer, who says, well, we can try and hurry this up with more heat.

Many hurried movements, more heat and twenty minutes later, my hair is a wet curling mess. My neck has got little brown-dyed spots. I'm sure my ears are brown too but they're hidden. The 2 idiots glance at me in the mirror. I look like a sight with my black face, spotty neck and wet hair with tendrils curling everywhere.

You want us to blow dry straight for you?


Oh. Was your perm done a looong time ago [implying that it was so old it was practically straight anyway]


Oh. That's... quite a long time.