Thursday, September 30, 2010

Reasons to smash your brain up

If you are a hardcore gambler, reading this research article may make you want to go out and find the best way to damage your prefrontal cortex. Apparently, you make a better gambler if you feel no fear.

Yeah, try telling that to those with the ah longs breathing down their neck.


Why must we live in boxes?

Categorising organisms is a scientific discipline brought to organised form by Carolus Linnaeus (is my nerd-dom obvious?). Is labelling things a biological imperative? Why do we feel compelled to identify things (even people) into neatly labelled boxes?

Sexual identity is one of them. How many of us enjoy a titillating whisper speculating on whether X is gay and does his wife know it? We hear of cases where children kill themselves after being jeered as gay by their schoolmates. Being labelled accurately (or inaccurately) can  be hurtful, especially if the label is perceived in a negative manner. The best case scenario is that we no longer attach negative connotations to any labels, but that is pure fantasy.

Nevertheless, is it necessary to let people know whether we are straight/gay/bi/asexual/pansexual?

What business is it of theirs anyway? Unless they are a potential bedmate, I don't see why it would be of relevance to them. Even if you did end up in bed with said person, it is still not of relevance to them.

It may only be relevant if you decide to make a commitment to that person; in which case, I do believe in total disclosure. I see no reason why a gay person (male or female) should not get into a heterosexual marriage, so long as both parties are willing to stick by their vows (To love and cherish faithfully, till death etc etc etc). Sexuality is NOT an excuse to be unfaithful (yeah, Jim McGreevey, this means you); you chose to marry that person, commit to a family life with that person, so you damn well better stick to your end of the agreement, bud.

However, with the famewhore mentality that seems to be pervasive, it appears that people feel a need to let the world know of who/what they are. Look, at the end of it, who cares whom you like to bang (unless you're Roman Polanski)? I agree wholeheartedly with Ms Moreno on her post Gay? Straight? Get Over It. When it comes to treatment of non-heteronormative characters on television/silver screen, I prefer the way the Europeans do it; with a shrug and "let's move on" nod without the drama and obsequiousness that we see in Hollywood.

So unless you're like this guy (see bottom), there is no need to tell all and sundry about whom you'd like to kick the sheets with, yeah?

Monday, September 27, 2010

Don't be too hard on the youth today ...

... they can't help being what they are. If you are a GenX'er (or even a baby boomer) who is exasperated when dealing with a junior / student / whatever who belongs to the Generation Y, you are not alone.

Some have harshly dubbed the GenYs as the Dumbest Generation who believe everything they read on the Internet and are desperate for fame that they'd do the most hideous things to get the most hits on YouTube. Narcissistic and short-sighted, they are disdained as fame whores who have little understanding of privacy of self. They come across as figjams with a massive sense of self-entitlement. But is that really what they are or are we guilty of generalisation?

As a GenXer, one should be a little more understanding, coming from a tough sell generation that has been dubbed as cynical slackers with no real ambition or impact on the world. Yeah, no doubt you had moments of wanting to yank your hair out by the roots because the dumb intern refused to write a letter / e-mail without using gibberish texting acronyms (W U?!) but once upon a time someone else had bashed their head on the desk at the sight of you as well.

Frankly, I believe that the GenYers face a great deal more challenge than we did. They are bombarded with so many messages that rivals an ADHD with no Ritalin on a sugar high. Yes, they have the advantage of technology (home PC, laptops, highspeed Internet connection, mobile phones etc), but it also means more pressure for them to stay connected, to out-perform and to be the one to be noticed in a crowd. For those who lament that this generation do not know how to take care of themselves or do the simplest chores, remember that they are the generation raised by maids and had no other job except to study and go for tuition / dance / music / art classes.

GenYers are also under pressure to excel in a terrifying way. The pressure to take more than 10 subjects for their high school exam., to score all A's, to be the best athlete, the best performer, the best writer etc etc etc is something we never had to contend with. Granted that the SPM during our time was tough enough that getting 8 A's makes you the wunderkind of the district, sometimes even at state level. Since so many people are obtaining a gazillion of A's, university entrance become extremely competitive and they have to work ever so much harder to distinguish themselves from their peers.

We can afford a childhood rife with play time, exploring our neighbourhood with friends and generally just being a child. We had little fear of strangers and except for the odd, racist fear mongering of our elders ("If you are naughty, I will sell you to the cloth merchant Bengali!") we are relatively footloose and fancy free. We didn't worry about being bullied online (our bullies prefer being up close and personal), we didn't worry (overmuch) about passing the exams, we didn't worry about the environment that we were despoiling, we didn't worry on whether the economic cake was enough for us as well and ad nauseam the worries that plague kids born after 1990.

And many of us forget that the target of our rants are just a small percentage of the population of GenY. These are the privileged, middle to upper class kids who come from two income families. We forget those who slip between the cracks, the children of the urban poor (many who turn into Mat/Minah Rempit to spend their time or relieve the pressure they face) or the rural poor who struggles because they are not equipped to face the changing economy.

So let's not be an old fart and give the kids today a break.

Word of the Day

polemomania (n.)

Excessive desire for conflict; militant anger.

After the umpteenth time of having her stapler disappear, Polly was seized by a rush of polemomania.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Necessity is the mother of all invention?

Did you know that pornography helps drive pay-per-view television (precursor to what is now Astro in Malaysia) and the VCR (the great grand-daddy of DVDs and Blu-Ray disks for you millenium kids)? Not to mention the infrastructure of the Internet.

I didn't know either.

On the scientific front, the reason for females to be unfaithful has been quantified mathematically (in a Royal Society B paper, no less).

It is beautiful, see?

For men to be unfaithful, apparently mathematics is not required (either that or scientists haven't bothered analysing such a common and unremarkable phenomenon).

Pest control green-style

Eco-friendly pest control is all the rage. It took the near-demise of the bald eagle to stop the world from using DDT to control mosquitoes (a move said to have inadvertently drove up the number of malaria cases)and other agricultural pests for us humans to learn that, "Dude, you gotta also look at the bigger picture."

How do you kill an invasive nocturnal predator that was accidentally introduced into the ecosystem of an island? By parachuting dead mice laced with toxin onto the tree-tops where said predator inhabits. Bear in mind that the parachute systems evaluated includes those that make sure the poisoned bait stays on the tree-tops and not harm the innocent crabs living below on the ground.

Is that ingenious or what?

Monday, September 20, 2010

Video killed the radio star ... best and worst.

I was flipping channels one night and had the poor chance to watch the "Telephone" video clip, courtesy of MTV Asia. Like an insect caught in amber, I was paralysed and unable to change the channel; hence my watching it in its entirety.

I have known that Lady Gaga isn't a believer of titillation; rather, she courts outright revulsion, but seriously, that video clip is about as sexy as pornography.


I wish I had seen this video right after I had seen that mental rape of a video. Now *this* video embodies sexiness in a textured and visually delectable manner. Oh, it also helps that the deliciously sinister Mr Eric Roberts is featured in it *bites lip*.

Enjoy. The Killers' Mr Brightside.

Monday, September 6, 2010


The strength it takes to make this look effortless is stupefying. Wonderful interpretation of the tango via the titillating pole dance.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Word play

Atonement by an adequate degree of suffering.

To make up for calling his girlfriend's pet beaver a rug rat, Owen paid for and sat through a Lady Gaga concert and considered this an act of satispassion.

Saying enough.

Henry's mother-in-law is a fan of hour long satisdiction over his inadequacies as her daughter's mate.

A speaker, an orator.

Lily was disappointed that her boyfriend's claim to be an expert tongueman was from his Toastmaster's Club efforts, not from anything else.

An imaginary instrument for measuring the degree of indecency in something.

Mrs Pruneworthy's obscenometer broke after viewing her son's Internet cache.