“Your Mandarin good or not ah?”

Another week came and went in silence. Interactions with humans have trickled to moves on the online Scrabble-esque game with others and the odd tweet. If one were to plot a graph of the number of words I spoke during a week five or ten years back and the number of words I’ve spoken each week in 2011, it would be a great exhibit for psychiatrists studying solitary behaviour.

Out of the long list of people on my MSN account, I’ve not been chatting with 99% of them. Even longer is the list of people who have possibly gone offline permanently or blocked me.

Facebook has become a bit of an albatross around my neck. I defend my privacy so much that I refuse to post stuff on my wall (or others’) and even participate in some of those games. I stay connected with them (by logging in and reading their latest status updates without commenting). Only just.

Twitter is heading the same way. The sole saving grace is the interesting stuff that the people on my feed post. I’ve been trying to stop myself from tweeting stuff out of frustration. I’m not sure if my rants are interesting to anyone else out there. Chances are, they aren’t.

So what am I left with?

My thoughts. Alone.


I’d like to think that my writing was more prolific years ago compared to the (occasional) trash I spew these days.

(Digressing a little, AOT’s 11th anniversary passed without any fanfare.)

It simply brightens up my day to receive comments for the recent entries. When almost everyone and his dog have jumped on the 144-letter limit, it is almost unthinkable for anyone to have the time to plough through a wall-of-text. And most of the stuff I write isn’t the funniest thing since the word “comedian” was invented.

So, for those who are still reading this space, you have my deepest gratitude (and sympathy).

I will still continue to rant and spew rubbish here. But they will be irregular simply because:

(a) most of the stuff I want to write have been written and posted on this site (usually with no new perspective)

(b) I’ve become more reclusive, which means that observations about human behaviours and interesting scenes have become increasingly fewer

(c) I don’t have much inspiration left to write stuff after a long day having to battle general idiocy and the overwhelmingly crowded public spaces. By the end of each day, I’m emotionally spent.


Many years ago, something got in my head and I decided to (self)publish a collection of stuff I’ve written. Being the Great Poseur that I am, I followed others by calling it a “zine”.

I was young and willing to impress then.

I gave readers of this site an option of me sending it to them or meeting me so that I could hand the “zines” to them (saving them some postage costs).

I’ve sent a few by post. I’ve met some in person.

In the heart of hearts, I reckon that those who got that “zine” via post might have been the luckier ones. They don’t get to see the bulging girth that is my paunch and a face that perhaps only my mother could love. The rest who met me in person must have been too scarred for life. I’ve not met any one of them more than twice.

Then, I’ve gone on those “blog” meetings a few times. Made friends with people who were expressing stuff online. There were some whose writing I loved and whom I’ve had the privilege of meeting them in person.

I’ve always treasured those moments when I met people who could write way better than meself, including those very rare moments when we talked about stuff we loved reading and writing.

Yet, through the passage of time, those connections became fragile and they fizzled into a distant memory.

As my social circle grows into something that is near extinction, I guess I won’t have to go around scarring and scaring people for life anymore. I’ve been troubled too much by how things petered out.  I don’t want to revisit again and again the thoughts about why they decided to walk out.

So, I am back to being a recluse, writing more than speaking when I express my thoughts, living a day at a time and writing a piece of shit, a word at a time.


I expected a verdict over the weekend. There was none.

Perhaps the agency received more than a mouthful from the previous date. Perhaps something along the lines of “that guy had a paunch so big, the table tilted towards me throughout the lunch date”, complete with the threat of a lawsuit for being permanently scarred in her mind. Or “I had that disgusting thing following me throughout the ride home and I wanna sue for damages.”

With such feedback, I’m sure the agency would possibly need not contact me for my version of the story. Somewhere in their office, my folder is being relegated to some obscure category.

Maybe I’ll get a call from some foreign brides agency soon.

“Hello sir. XXX dating agency passed your details to us. We’ve a fantastic date lined up for you. We’re in the process of flying her in from XXX village from the Cheenaland. Your Mandarin good or not ah?”


  1. tricia

    i still have your zine. you hand delivered it to me! haha

    i have the same prob with 99% of those on my msn list too. many seems to have mia-ed.

    while u still have me as a friend around, if you ever need a listening ear.

  2. D W

    You are the 1%. And the impression I have is that females tend to receive more messages on msn. And thanks for that offer!

  3. nessa

    I’m glad to read that going back to being a recluse doesn’t stop you from continuing to write. Because you should write, even if you think it’s a piece of shit. Because being able to express yourself as you do, even if it’s in this space, is a gift.

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