Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Thing About Chinese New Year

Chinese New Years are always my favourite time of the year, not only because of long weekends and food that defy all calorie counts, but also because ironically it celebrates not being married – how else do you get Ang Baos.

This festive season is always filled with so much pseudo positivity that it’s like half the country is on prozac over dose. It’s like going to Haw Par Villa. I never understood what all the hype is about taking a boat ride to see how you will be tortured in hell.

Why is it pseudo positivity you ask? Well it’s because so much well wishes comes out the mouth that I wonder if people actually know and truly mean what they are saying or that it’s just a social routine. It's like touching wood every time you say something ominous.

The only thing better that can come out of their mouths in this period, would be if they pulled a red packet out of it.

That said, I’ll give you the six things that define every Chinese New Year for me, because this is my blog and I don’t give a shit about what defines yours.

1. Well Wishes

This is the one time we are encouraged to say four letter words – Mandarin nonetheless – like ‘all year got fish’ and ‘step step high increase’ and dumber ones when you are my age and people tell you, ‘faster high grow up’. Like, hello? Puberty gave up on me ages ago.

I’d be honest here. I only say the most common ‘Gong Xi Fa Cai’, of which I don’t even understand the fucking meaning of it because it’s like you are congratulating someone for something that probably hasn’t or will never happen.

It’s just mocking. It’s like celebrating a pre-ejaculation, but worse, because you’d probably never get to enjoy anything at the end.

2. Goodies

I can’t really say I enjoy the snacks because I hate snacks. If I had to choose between starving and a pineapple tart, I would choose hidden third option, which is the razor, to slit my throat.

I also realize people are deaf during this period, or generally they don’t really give a shit about what you are saying.

They : “Try this pineapple tart. Very nice. Best you can find in Singapore.”
Me: “It’s okay. I don’t eat pineapple tarts.”
They : “Come, take one. Very nice. You must try this.”

I don’t know. Maybe I didn’t make myself clear. Do I need to send an email on this? Do I need to pee in the tart box to make myself clear? Maybe I need to yell. Was I laughing when I said it? Maybe I need to emphasize it with sign languages.

3. Gambling

The other thing I do love about CNY, is the blatant gambling. It’s only natural I feel this way, because I am Chinese, and the only thing we love better than gambling, is playing Mahjong and pretending that we are only playing it to pass time. Or maybe going to karaokes, but then again, singing is a Pinoy thing.

I hate Blackjack, because it’s a stupid game that resigns you to fate. You don’t need skill, all you need is luck and the ability to count till 21 – or 16 at least. The best game is Mahjong, because it helps to pass time.

Chinese New Year without gambling is like Michael Phelps without this bodysuits and bong, just ordinary.

4. In-Between

I won’t even call this gambling because it’s the dumbest yet most thrilling communal game since ‘Heart Attack!” and Mad Magazine.

You just open two cards and you call you rbet and hope it falls between both cards. It’s so easy to play, if dolphins had fingers to shuffle cards, they would be playing it. And at the same time, it is so wretchedly cursed with coincidences, you think you are witnessing a David Blaine card trick.

Just last weekend, I saw a pot grew from $30 to over $670 because in 4 hands, 3 of them hit a double from a 2 and Q and A and K. Those were the three times I laughed the hardest all week long. It was so funny, my conscience was laughing along with me.

5. Repetitive Questions

As you get older, your relatives run out of topics to talk to you about, that is why they constantly ask you the same questions every year.

If you went through an entire CNY without someone asking you; “When are you getting married”, then you belong to a very select group of people. There aren’t many of you that are this privileged. You can probably all fit into a Maxi cab.

6. Ang Baos

If Ang Baos had tits, it would be the equivalent of Florence Nightingale, because this is one tangible reward that supersedes all prior and subsequent flaws CNY may possess and saves it from being the shittiest period of the year – which is when we pay taxes.

This is the one time when single people are reassured that they are doing the right thing when they continue to receive red packets, mock at the bleeding bank books of married couples and think of a vasectomy when you see ugly children running around.

It’s like as if the married people are trying to tell us to stay single, so embrace it, enjoy it and cash it in.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Before I start writing a new post - long overdued I know -, here's some for those who haven't read the third. Here.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Butterfly Hates Time Share

Now, remember what it was like to honour words? To deliver promises? For civic mindedness and honesty? For efficacious communication and trust? For compensation of time and due reward.

Well obviously some people have forgotten. And since it is at my expense of time –
and partial amusement if I really must admit
-, then I say spare no mercy. My humour is only as potent as my wrath.

When I agree to take time off my busy schedule to attend a
time-share, it’s not because I really give a shit about what they are trying to sell. You can be selling me tampons for all I care or Nike shoes to polio kids, and the only reason I’m there is because you are offering me something attractive to sit through an hour of me giving you a hard time.

You can’t hard sell me. I will buy what I want to, although I don’t always make the most sound choices, or sometimes $5 cup noodles sound too good a bargain to resist or maybe that one time I bought that
sound system that is now still in the box.

It’s not like it was a convivial parade when I sat in that dingy office that would have made a cardboard box look like the Taj Mahal. Neither am I some gregarious youth looking for conversations with a novice trying to up sell me a program that made as much sense as heavy metal song lyrics.

So for sitting through 70 minutes, oh wait no, it was 90 minutes because I gave them so much problems with my questions, the company director actually had to tend to me himself, I think I fucking deserve my free accommodation and air ticket to Phuket.

What?! But Butterfly, you mean you didn’t get your promised gifts?

No shit Sherlocks! It says on the fucking voucher that I have to email my booking details to them, but I must have obviously missed out the part about the 'no reply will be given' fine print.

And here I was thinking I was going to start believing in free goods. Start trusting that perhaps there can be other free things in life, like sex, air, newspapers and STDs.

But because I am such a magnanimous person, so much so that my armpits sweat magnanimity and forgiveness like rain over the Amazon, I am willing to take the high road and give you fucking shitheads in that company a chance to redeem yourself.

I am giving you the benefit of doubt that your IT server might have crashed because there is a free chapatti food festival in India or re-runs of Slumdog Millionaire, so your help desk is not available to rectify the problem.

Or that perhaps Poca might have mistyped the email and God forbid, Hotmail has yet to prompt her of her mistake. Or that maybe you are just so overjoyed to see my booking reservations that your admin staff passed out from sheer excitement.

Whatever the case, I am going to re-send –
for the 3rd time. My gawd, three times. Not maybe people even get that many chances in life. You are so much luckier than the Jews at the Holocaust, or John McCain who will never be President.

So what do you do when you are given another chance by me? You don’t fuck it up. You read the damn email and you acknowledge the fucking booking. And if you have some time, you send me an apology letter and maybe a voucher for two free sundaes at MacDonalds.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

The Consequence of Luminous Friday

Consequence is like a gay prison cell mate, you don’t want to believe it will come, but sooner or later, he’s going to fuck you in the ass.

When we got past laughing about the Luminous Friday story the day after, which included filling in blanks about what happened and who did what, never did I imagine that the story hadn’t ended with a punctuation.

I did however come to realize how RotiPrata came to have a whole massive roll of toilet paper that would have been enough to wipe every ass in China, in his possession.

To put it simply, alcohol is a vortex of all logical behaviour. Call it an emancipation of rage or surrender of basic motor skills, but it all began when he started having difficulty pulling the paper hand towels, he lost patience and decided the best way was to kick open the contraption and take it altogether.

Then of course, Monday came and it was always a day we would recount the weekend over a morning cigarette and allow consequence to catch up to us, or in most case, deny all of it.

We knew Friday was a carnage of sorts; intemperance of alcohol, school boy misdemeanor, kleptomaniac disclosures and the list runs on, all we needed was an axe murderer and we would have made Fox River Prison look like a kindergarten.

What we didn’t know, was the repercussion of our actions.

First it was a complaint that LB had ruined the pool table’s felt cloth by staining it. This was in addition to him also breaking a cue in what he now refers to as ‘The Longest Pool Game Ever’.

Sure, there were giggles and grins under the guise of condemnation and scorn of his actions. And most definitely, the cost of replacing the felt cloth did send a wave of severity through our cranial receptors, but if there were cause of worry for LB, we lost it somewhere after he tore our shirts.

Then evening came with a phone call. A rude awakening. It was like receiving a voice mail from consequence and it would have sounded like, ‘Haha...”. In reality, it sounded like this,

I don’t know what you muthafuckers did, but your faces are all over the video. And who the fuck broke that paper shit in the toilet?!”

Well apparently, our whole debacle was caught on CCTV. The main star of it being me and my little stunt by the bench, right down to talking to the stone dog. Oh, but I wasn’t alone.

RotiPrata had to top it off by apparently –and I say apparently because we don’t see how that is possible – being caught kicking down the paper hand towel holder and running off with it.

If you actually knew who I was, or what I do, then you’d probably figure out why this is a HUGE problem. So huge, there isn’t even a font size worthy enough to write it in.

: “What the fuck are we going to do now?”

Me: “How the fuck should I know? Apologise? Fix the bloody hand towel disposer? Do you think thinner is good for getting marker stains out?”

Then after a full evening contemplating what reaction to this would be, which probably included fleeing the country, full cosmetic surgery and blaming alcohol amongst other things, we decided to leave matters to fate.

I met LB and Reznor an hour later.

: “You muthafucker, you ruined a pool table.”
: “I told you all not to ask me to drink already. You see! This is what happens when I drink you fucker!”
: “Ahh, fuck you. Yours isn’t even close to what happened to RotiPrata and me.

LB: “Huh? What happened?
: “Remember our debacle?
: “Ya..”
: “We got caught on CCTV…”

There was a long pregnant silence. His face was priceless. Then,


The great thing was that things took a turn for the better and it all came down to Sunday afternoon champagne brunch that burnt a hole in the wallet to mitigate matters.

LB was so tickled by the fact that the brunch was angled almost like it was a punishment that he spent the days leading up to it in perpetual stitches every time we mentioned it.

Then Sunday came, and it was exactly as how I had imagined it to be; good food and a race to clear out as many bottles of Champagne as we could. It just got so out of hand with ferocious cheers one after another that I had to do what all responsible men would do.

I ran to the toilet to induce puke and I can because I am that awesome. It was also weird because I had so much meat for lunch, it was like I was puking meatballs.

Then 18 bottles of Champagne later, LB was so drunk, he - and I will go about this like a checklist – accomplished it all in one afternoon.

a. Bite someone x 3

b. Volunteered to have his chest hair plucked

c. Threw a glass of water at RotiPrata

d. Threw a full bucket of ice and water at RotiPrata

e. Wrestled to the ground

f. Volunteered to pay for a group hair wash

g. Concussed in the backseat of the car

h. Paid $210 for our hair wash

Don’t you just love alcohol?