Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Sentimentalist : 7myths

Fulfilling bet no 3

Debunking certain myths about men, love and the incomprehensible

This debunking will be in the form of experiences of some friends (who kindly permitted this "publication" ) whose identities are fictionalized to protect the innocent -yours truly

The cast:

- female lawyer, early 30s , disillusioned cynic, lady z

- the hunter gang; hunter 1, mid 30s executive whose marriage lasted all of 6 months after couplehood of 10 years

hunter2 , mid 20s executive, frisky as a puppy (ladyz)

both fancy themselves as birds of prey (incomprehensible) and do not appreciate the reminders that these hunters often feed on carrion or rodents?!

-last but not least silent nice guy, late 20s, executive, so slow in the game that he watched the love of his life marry someone else without saying a word, would inspire violence if he weren't so nice; let's call him vanilla

Exploding myths

1)Men do not talk or gossip

hahahaha, never met a drunken guy have you? Actually, apart from puke and bs, guys at a certain stage of inebriation tend to spill their guts (every sense of the word) and spare no details, some even bawl and we're not talking about the snag

heard of how men dread the "we've to talk" line from their gals, lady z concurs that a guy saying that is even more terrifying

a reason why guys like the silent myth? Talking sometimes means big trouble. Hunter 2 talked himself into trouble at a school reunion; in a scene that could have been a remake of 4 weddings, he asked about what he assumed was an old girlfriend of a senior and when that senior replied that he wasn't going out with that gal anymore, hunter 2 didn't wait for details but blabbled about how that gal had known the entire rugby team. After an awkward silence, hunter 2 was told that his senior was married to that girl. That wasn't the worst , the worst came a week later when the senior walked into the company as his new boss - he left that job pretty rapidly

2)Equality of the genders

hmm, very much a myth workplace and relationship wise. Females too proactive are deemed easy or desperate. Aguy who proposes an open relaiotnship still means open only on his end. Some men have star tek syndrome (some writer invented that term, can't remember who) at this day and age whilst many still want the whore / pristine goddess combi whlst women want the swiss army combi male

3) Meaning what you say?

Both sexes are afflicted. Menspeak often omits the important facts like; you're his first and last (just not his 2 - 99)

Womenspeak assumes some intellect which is unfortunately absent from the male audience- as lady z fumes, the dolts think that not wanting a celebration means not wanting a celebration instead of wanting a surprise!

4) Conventions

Conventions like the 3 date rule are invented to promote easier scoring; hunter 1 analyses the gals as follows - one daters are easy, the secondaters are as much scorers as the guys, the thirdaters are conventional. Those who don't surrender after the 3rd date aren't the scoring type, they're the serious type and time to test the acelerators

The strong and silent type - erm, sad to say, most of the time they are better off not speaking- hey, haven't you seen that footballer who's all cute but cringeworthy when he speaks

5) Platonic love

erm, not unless you're the abelard heloise type but you've read that earlier post so not repeating

friendship is NOT platonic love, it is when the thought of being with that guy makes you wanna barf or laugh hysterically or (before male friends draw knives) you don't wanna lose a cool guy after some meaningless fling

6) The amicable breakup

erm, never watched the war of the roses have ya?! but seriously, it's awkward at best and real psycho at times - ask that friend who ended up at some Newfoundland fishing town to escape some fbi wannabe ex

7) Time and commitment solves every problem

The physic law of relationships: relationships and people often move in oppositeand equal directions- what is attractive becomes irritatingand soon you'll be homicidal . If love is blind, vision is restored gradually as will rationality.

Hunter 1 is the first to agree that commitment is no solution - he realized that love had ended and that was even before the wedding was over

Vanilla has heard that geriatric joke way too often but dear, wake up!

And for galpals who want to reform their guys - as time goes by, you might just discover your reformist efforts have cost you the guy you liked

okie, that's the end - thank god before the sacchrine overwhelms, those who are still syrupy, listen to that alison (okie so it's a mistake!) krauss songand be happy!

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Sentimentalist : What is Love?

Fulfilling the bet, no2

Frankly my dear, if yours truly knew the answer, the greatest philosopher of all time would be undisputed - after all, mankind has been asking the same silly question for centuries

The following 7 truths and 7 myths regarding love and the 2 genders are NOT biographical (well, not so far as it is offensive to others) and come from a person who's never been in love (lotsa likes, some irate exs but not love) - huge pinch of salt required.

7 truths

Love :

1) is the domain of the irrational

if you're too rational, you're liable to analyse love to death. The fun of the "crazy little thing called love" is the impulsive headlong rush that reflects some reckless adrenaline funk that makes you ignore that voice of rationality that tells you "save yourself"

2) is ironic

if you list Mr Perfect's qualities, you'll meet him one day and ... you'll dislike the guy - apparently your x'mas list forgot the all important quality - that you like the guy

heard of 6 degrees of seperation? You'll probably travel through 359 degrees of wilderness to find that Mr Right

3) is a combination of time ...

The right time , the right him and the right mood is essential - if one is serious and the other isn't, there'll be fire but no fireworks!

And anyone dating across timezones will testify, the phonecalls and videochats aren't all that fun especially at ungodly hours - and the only reason why your coffee breath isn't killing anyone is 'cos fibre optics aren't that advanced yet - wait for 6/7G

4) and space

Time alone is essential 'cos everyone blows some steam at some time - if your Mr Right doesn't believe that every relationship requires some space, let him be around when you "morph" into your grizzly self (snappy looking for someone to "annihilate") - you might see him do a bad imitation of Little Miss Bo Peep (run screaming) - sadly that's the last you'll see of him and your reputation.

5) is complicated

You'll realise this when god's idea of a joke is to split Mr Right into 3 seperate men ; Mr Brains, Mr Nice Guy and Mr De ja Vu. It's a dilemma (unless you have Mary Shelley aspirations) as a friend once said "you can't ***** brains", and nice guy sometimes means "no personality" and Mr Deja Vu is freaky especially when your first meeting is at a graveyard (it's nothing sinister -it was outside a college library) on a very foggy night.
Just for the record, none of the 3 involved a physicist - that was just a distraction tactic gone bad
Besides, if everything is too simple, you'll be wondering what the catch is?
6) is communication
Guys , when your female companion stops speaking - it isn't that god has heard your prayers - it's probably a sign that you'll discover that the "big freeze" isn't a drink or east coast weather but the temperature of your relationship
7) is neurotic
ok, as neurotic as the people involved. Just remember some safety rules
guys, do NOT talk about weight , age or kids to your women and gals avoid talk about his toys (cars etc), his friends and c*****ment (especially in relation to wedding vows)
7 myths will be posted later but if you're blindly in love, just go listen to that heather krauss song and be blissfully blind

Monday, July 11, 2005

Sentimentalist :Talking about memories

Lost a bet the other day (not the olympic bid - won that bet) and agreed to write 3 sentimental pieces , this represents no1
Was talking to an old friend from university times, and as with most old friends, the conversation revolved around (you guessed it) old times (geez, think, there's about more than 30 years of these conversations to go, assuming average lifespan) , didn't help that Mr Chirac actually jibbed about Brit food the previous day - that merely guided the conversation to Brit food. That merely triggered memories of really bad hall food (but if you ate at other "halls" - erm, well, it's kinda the devil and the deep blue sea!) and curiously enough "ready, steady, cook" . For those who're longer in the tooth (never did quite figure what that means), long before Jamie Oliver was famous, the selection of tv chefs was kinda limited - there was the immaculate dame of brit cooking Delia Smith , the really weird chefs from channel 4 or 5 and those cool chefs who competed in "ready, steady, cook", of whom Ainsley Harris was a favourite - hey, if you remember that the culinary skills of most guys then were limited to heating up that can of baked beans , you'd agree! Ok, so we watched too much tv but if bearing in mind the weather of a typical day and the limited resources of a student there's only so much travelling, shopping and movie watching possible.

Associative thinking

It's quite amazing how you associate certain things with certain friends or acquaintances, even tv. Whether it is "friends" or "er" with american exchange students and medic students; "ready, steady , cook" and "x-files" with friends from home country; "east enders" and"neighbours" with some brit friends (don't ask why ) and the fav of all " have I got news for you" and "whose line is it anyway" with that senior who introduced yours truly to brit tv, ET ( and nope that's not some description of the guy, just his initials since he hates other forms of shortening his name!). Of course, this was thesame guy who was freaking about Kant and cant even though he aced the exams eventually

Naturally, memories are made of much more than tv , there's music . There's nothing short of Fate that'll allow you to find a friend who has the german version of the obscure song you like which most people don't remember or even more amazing find a friend who shares such similar taste in music; from ella and sinatra to crowded house and that george michael song to that excerpt from Samson - that it's freaky! How do you thank a friend who convinces you Trisha Yearwood isn't all that corny or explain why amidst all the bad memories of 2nd year there's one really weird memory of singing abba songs (which you hate) with a medic, economist and biochemist at a really weird dinner/drink party. And nothing will equal the irony of singing a friend's fav queen's songto him when he finally got married! heehee and the list goes on...

The moral of this story? Forget those interminable translation classes (no thanks to certain smart asses, okie, just kidding). Forget those who made life hellish, they aren't worth the bytes of memory! Remember those good times or funky times when there was laughter, fun and cheer. Even those weird times like when you had to push a stranger's car with a friend and you were really pissed not because the car looked like it had just gone through mud derby , not even 'cos the driver and her friend were individually bigger than you and your friend combined but 'cos the men who drove by had the time to make catcalls and jeer but not help! Above all, thank all those who were there for you through all those really tough times be it lending a shoulder to cry on or a ear to listen. So thank youf or all the memories and for being a friend

Friday, July 01, 2005

Society through the movies 2

A lighthearted look at the psyche of men

Movies in recent years have tackled the theme of differences between men and women ; often suggesting that differences are more than physiological - a fact that women have known for ages!

One common theme east west is what it would cost men to think like women."When Men become Women" , a hongkong film , proposes that men can only think like women when they're emasculated...quite literally. Don't worry, it's not some femmie movie , the plot's too thin for that. A short summary; 3 cads who treat women really poorly are on a ghost bus to hell and their bargaining with the devil wins them a reprieve, the catch is that they have to reform themselves to win their manhood back. Suffice to say that the movie kinda proves that men think with their , er, sexual anatomies. A similar but more puerile movie suggests that men have to dress up as women to think like them and that mammaries are key to the female psyche. That kinda ties up the movie with the hollywood comedy "What women really want " . Bearing in mind that Mel Gibson was regarded as the sexiest man on earth for a couple of years, it was funny to see him in stockings and makeup, a far cry from the mad max days, but the entire movie was disturbingly from a male perspective, with mere flashes of female intuition. Isn't it ironic that Mel's character benefits commercially (by "stealing" the thoughts of his female colleagues) and sexually (the Marissa Tomei character) purely by being able to hear women's thoughts and thereby associatively think like women. Though Mel's character isn't "emasculated", he is "electrocuted" before he's able to hear women's thoughts, hardly a walk in the park and funnily reminiscent of Frankenstein ("it's alive!")

The surge in superhero movies may not just indicate that the post 9/11 world thinks it's in need of rescuing, but also a wish that mundane lives are merely a counterfoil for superhero exciting lives. There's just something really freaky about grown adults in costumes - ok, just freaky for the author (but hey, if your first male friend had a penchant for superman costumes and various playmates had the knack for shouting "super XXX has done it again " every time they won a game, superheroes are a feaky chldhood memory!). Interestingly, superheroes are a lot darker and more ambivalent than ever, perhaps indicative of a world where facts are different depending on your tv channel and network (eg. Fox or Al Jazeera). Then again, are these movies indicative of man's refusal to grow up or that man doesn't grow up, the toys just get bigger!
Men and arthouse films are like oil and water unless the male is a film buff, critic or in the film industry. A unscientific poll shows there are 2 main reasons why men watch arthouse films
1) They are hoping to impress their female companions (and catch 40 winks)
2) They were dragged by their companiona to arthouse fare.

The younger set are a little more puerile - most watch for the sake of "gratuitous sex scenes" - guess why there is a predominance of male viewers at, for example, scandinavian art films

Before the men complain about male bashing, they wouldn't like it if women thought like men , remember the lessons of 9to5, besides, weren't the '80s a lesson that gender differences are best maintained?!