Thursday, August 31, 2017

The Miri Lieutenant's Man

Afternoon sessions at the gym are becoming quite a routine for me, not that I've actually turned into a man-beast. Sadly not true though I'm starting to fill out that t-shirt which is fine by me. Note to anyone else reading - don't overdo leg day or you'll never wear slim jeans ever again.

Apart from the occasional desperate housewife who sneaks in for a resentful run on the treadmill, I've noticed the afternoon denizens of the gym come from two specific sorts. Since slick professional fellows wouldn't be waltzing into the gym at such unseasonable hours, it's obvious that only those who aren't working would be able to workout then.

So the first group would be the schoolboys and the collegiates; all far too dangerously enticing despite being practically jailbait. It really should be illegal to look so scrumptious at that age dammit. Enthusiastically bounding in, usually in large mate-y groups slapping each other on the back, they scamper and scuttle from machines to the weight rooms with such energetic vivacity that it's almost painfully distracting.

That, and the neverending display of abs of course.

Basically something out of Fitcasting but unfortunately with clothes on.

Could you show me that move again? 

Then there's the more sinister second group.

Burly, dark and tattooed, grunting, cursing and spitting; I dub these the Gangster Ges. So much less appetizing than the former. Quite apparent that early daytime isn't their usual mode since most come with bleary hangover faces that probably haven't seen the morning sun since they were in blue shorts. These ones specifically come in pairs, hardly ever in crowds. What I assume would be the mob boss and his most trusted lieutenant.

No doubt building muscle for their extracurricular activities later in the night.

And this particular Gangster Ge always comes with his faithful sidekick at the very same time. Oddly enough the lieutenant does nothing but just hang around waiting for the boss to finish his routine. Unlike the forlorn girlfriend waiting in the wings, at least he helps out by spotting for his boss, even hurrying over to refill his canister of water. Very little is done otherwise with him literally just twiddling his thumbs watching over the man pump iron.

Monday, August 28, 2017

To Speak or Not To Speak

Whispered secrets are shared mostly in confessional boxes where the sacred seal of confession sufficiently conceals whatever misdeeds and misdemeanours might have been committed before. Outside the hushed sanctity of the church, things get a little bit more complicated especially when unsubstantiated rumours start gaining more traction with mounting visible evidence lending credence to the heretofore questionable fact.

And by that I mean Ambiguous Aaron.

Once upon a time a possibly Maybe Gay, doubtful events of late however seem to have sufficiently confirmed Aaron's deeply closeted status. Not only is there the same ubiquitous 'friend' wherever he travels - which is suspicious enough, validated statements from his hometown have basically settled the case of 'Is He or Isn't He?' for the rest of us. Apparently on some long forgotten occasion, he once professed his sexual proclivities to his inner circle of intimates and that lil nugget of information made its stealthy way across the seas to us.

Didn't even have the need to call in the big guns!

Of course knowing the fact and hearing it straight from the reticent horse's mouth is a far different thing. Till now despite our attempts to present a thoroughly welcoming, supportive front for his much delayed outing, Aaron stubbornly clings to his purported heterosexuality with persistent appeals to recommend him to the eligible bachelorettes in our circle. 

Therein lies the problem. 

A new dillemma? 

Not that any of us would knowingly lead some innocent damsel to her sacrificial doom on the altar as the unfortunate gay bride - or tongqi 同妻! Far from it since we tend to steer the more oblivious fillies in the opposite direction away from him - but apparently we do occasionally lose sight of one or two. Unbeknownst to us, Aaron's buttoned-up conservative demeanour has somehow bespelled someone that we know.

Or at least the devastating charm seems to be taking slow but steady effect.

Paul : This is starting to be a problem. 
Calvin : How so? 
Paul : I think she's starting to like him. Subtle but I think it's there. 
Calvin : Aiyo. 
Paul : Perhaps a hint of warning in her ear? 

So do we tell the friend our growing suspicions about his assumed heterosexual facade? Or do we keep the sacred seal of confession even though he hasn't technically come out to any of us yet?

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Miss Independents Club

Don't get me wrong, self reliance and independence are wonderful traits. Something most of us would do well to inculcate in ourselves.

Only some of the Miss Independents I know seem to go overboard with the virulent D.I.M. Syndrome - and by that it means Do It Myself; a newly discovered infectious disease that seems to affect most young Miss Independents of a certain age rendering them physically and mentally incapable of accepting help. Any offer of aid is immediately repudiated with a vehemently impassioned nay followed by the pridefully repeated 'I Can Do It Myself' mantra.

Miz Independent : What if my car breaks down? What if the car battery dies? 
Paul : You're not living in the jungle. You're basically in a small town where everyone's just a couple of minutes away. 
Miz Independent : How will I get to work? 
Paul : Just tell them the car broke down. Get someone to pick you. Get a cab. Get an Uber. 
Miz Independent : I can't possibly do that! I should be able to do it myself.
Paul : What's wrong with getting help? 
Miz Independent : I must be independent and self reliant!
Paul : And walk to work? 
Miz Independent : Maybe!
Paul : Or how about a car battery charger?
Miz Independent : Yes! I have to depend on me! I want independence!

Made it sound almost like an energy drink. Wouldn't surprise me if our burly frontierswoman wanted to live a self sustainable life in her own sturdy treehouse - made with repurposed timber chopped with her own fair hands - and grow her own organic food.

D.I.M. Syndrome! It's a real thing, I tell ya!

Honestly though, never have I understood the women of today's single-minded obsession with being independent and self reliant. Since I'm pretty certain none of the boys I knew ever had such frenzied fixations, I can only imagine it is something they all learned back in school! For all I know, perhaps the schoolgirls have been secretly shuffled away to secluded mountaintop convents just to have the oft-repeated mantra on autonomy and independence drilled into their young malleable minds. 

Or perhaps something insidiously mixed in with the rubella vaccines only given to teenage girls? 

Or maybe we have Destiny's Child to blame for it! Obviously the theme song for all the Miss Independents throwing their hands up at them. 

Maybe all my crazed suppositions are wrong but surely there has to be a Miss Independents Club out there with clandestine meetings disguised as book clubs along with regular weekly pamphlets covertly cloaked as frivolous beauty magazines. Otherwise how are they all being plagued with the exact same symptoms of D.I.M. Syndrome? All of them seem to have something to prove... but to whom?

For me, I think I would much prefer to be a lethargic potentate with thousands of slaves at my beck and call. Self reliance? Pshaw! Hell, I wouldn't even lift a finger to feed myself if I could! 

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Diffident Dress

Don't get me wrong. Though I do have certain fastidious scruples about proper attire, I certainly don't contemplate showing up at a summer pool blowout all bedecked in a frilly silk ballgown. Let's not be totally daft. It's all about dressing for the right occasion; which means those stained t-shirts and ratty shorts that you wore while cleaning out the dusty garret last weekend simply shouldn't make an appearance at a dinner party.

And absolutely not to a wedding banquet. Have some respect for your troubled hosts please.

Yes, laugh all you like but I've seen that particularly graceless faux pas take place a couple of times. In fact our very own fashion blunder Reasonable Remedy did it twice, right in front of our very eyes so that my eagle-eyed nurses felt compelled to immediately post up on Instagram for posterity! Terribly judgemental they have become as well though I've tried my best to rein them in.

Or at least prevent them from emphatically pointing out the deplorable flaws in public.

Though sometimes it can be a little bit hard to judge!

However what I didn't expect next was a surprisingly patronizing critique from Diffident David instead. For someone like him - like the ultimate slob Lanky Larry - who obstinately champions the Get Casual Everyday Cause to find someone's attire absolutely execrable, I find myself absolutely flabbergasted. Have I finally successfully converted him?

David : I'm just surprised you didn't make a comment about his dressing!
Paul : Why? 
David : He looks terrible. 
Paul : In t-shirt and shorts with selipar buruk? 
David : Yes!
Paul : You wear the exact same thing all the time. 
David : That's different. I wear better. 
Paul : In t-shirt and shorts with selipar buruk? 
David : Mine is more fitting!
Paul : I hate to break it you but still t-shirt and shorts with selipar buruk. 

Try as he might to convince me, I really couldn't tell the difference. Even with high-definition pictures to prove his point, I couldn't see it. Sure, the t-shirt was a tad less unkempt. Maybe the shorts were a little smoother and newer. But overall let's face it, it's still t-shirt and shorts with selipar buruk.

Selipar buruk just means lousy flip flops over here.

Wait, did that mean he doesn't actually like what he wears himself?

Sunday, August 06, 2017

All By Myself

Certainly not a theme song I'd recommend for anyone other than the eponymous Bridget Jones but these days I think a friend of mine might appreciate it. Remember the taciturn someone I once mentioned who drew the line between her super-tight BFFs and the rest of her ignominious generic Fs?

Well, let's call her Anxious Annie.

Delayed flights are not uncommon, and over here with the tiny runway coupled with the numerous domestic flights, it has become an almost daily event. Almost impossible for anyone to even confirm their flight ETAs, even once already safely boarded on the plane. For Anxious Annie however, the very notion of a flight delayed would certainly spell a catastrophe.

Annie : I realized I was all alone. 
Paul : In the airport? 
Annie : Yes. 
Paul : Aren't there dozens of other passengers around? 
Annie : Yes. They immediately all took out their cellphones to inform someone of their new arrival times. They all had someone. I had no one to call. 
Paul : So? 
Annie : I am all alone. 
Paul : There's no need to call anyone when you're going for a business trip. You could call a taxi. 
Annie : There's no one I could call!
Paul : Uber? 
Annie : Nooo....

Well perhaps my bleak pragmatism wasn't exactly what she needed at the time. Diverted by her disquieting mental ordeal, I might even have chuckled. Probably one of the reasons I've been ingloriously bumped down to her forgotten second tier compatriots.

What? So you were singing All By Myself at the airport? 

Shoulder to try on, I can provide but you'd probably get a painfully realistic dose of tough love first.

Though I found the reasons obviously simple enough, I hesitated to even tell her. There's only so much you can reveal when you're cheerlessly mucking it up with the other shoddy acquaintances beyond the true friendzone, and not living it up with her cozy intimates. Would speaking the truth only leave you even farther in the cold?

So let me tell it plainly enough, Annie. Tragically there's no one to blame but yourself. It's hard to find a friend to call when everyone else has been placed at chilly arms' length, while the ones you count as real BFFs aren't actually that emotionally available. It's all about the science of friendship which means also being a friend, so hiding in seclusion and refusing friendly overtures isn't going to help. Being closed off only denies real intimacy between friends which is why there's hardly anyone around to call when emotional help is needed.

Really... that's the problem. Tough love, like I said.

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Weird Things with Gay Couples

Haven't gotten around to putting it up but I just have to, even though it's a year late throwback, but hey doesn't mean it rings any less true. Especially since Charming Calvin and I get the first part all the time.

Stranger : Wait, are you two a couple? 
Paul : Yes. 
Stranger : I thought you two were brothers. 
Paul : I introduced him as my boyfriend. 
Stranger : Are you sure you're not brothers? 
Paul : Yes. 
Stranger : Stranger things have happened. 
Paul : Stranger than brothers saying they are together? 

Really. Not the first time we've gotten the baffled look since appallingly, Chinese fellas with square faces and dark-rimmed spectacles frequently get mistaken for one another. Usually to cover up their obvious gaffe, they follow it up with the common Chinese phrase 夫妻相 to mollify us after so it's all good.

Fortunately some of the gay stereotypes are actually true when it comes to me so the nagging questions on fashion and interiors are all fine since hell yes, I do have vehement opinions on that. Not too sure how Charming Calvin feels about it but busily snacking on the party hors d'ouevres usually saves him from answering.

And hey, if you're almost the same size are your man, it basically doubles your wardrobe. Isn't that the best part about being in a gay relationship? Never actually tried on his shirts since I actually have an embarassing number untested and unworn in my closet but I've definitely pulled on his shorts before. Way back when we were first dating. Having to dash off for work emergencies doesn't leave me much choice unless I carry spare clothes to change everywhere I go.

Which I do these days of course.

When we travel, I have to admit there are times when our clothes strikingly match, though never ever on purpose, but we still draw the line at getting couple t-shirts.