Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Happy New Year Shout Out

Lots of folks out there like to describe the passing of a year as a blink of an eye. Well, it certainly wasn't like that for me, it was a long year, filled with all kinds of emotion for me... Both the joyous and the gloomy ones. So now at the end of the end of 09 and the beginning of the beginning of 10, I'd like to reflect abit on what happened this year, and what sort of resolutions I should attempt to achieve for next year.

Firstly, alcohol was my downfall this year... I think I must have got overly drunk more times this year than the past few years combined. Thinking back, it surely is something to be ashamed of. One of the most significant distressing moment of my 09 was that in my drunken state, I accidently outed myself to a few friends. That caused more than a few problems for me, because obviously I'm pretty closeted... I tried to amend the situation by making the people I told not to out me, but it was slightly too late people started talking behind my back, and even started asking my housemate to scrutinise my every move to verify that I am gay.

That brought me to one of my happiest moment in 09, in an attempt to get the support of my housemate, and to ensure that he doesn't become a 'spy' for the people trying to find out about me, I outed myself to him. It was something I've been wanting to do for a long time now... And because of that circumstance, I decided there was no time like that moment, so I just pulled the trigger and came out to him (I was sober then, mind you). It was a most memorable moment of the year because he turned out to be okay with it, he is absolutely straight by the way... Lol I already know what some of you are thinking. So now at least I don't have to live a lie and pretend to be straight around my bestest bro.

I guess this year, I've started to make a lot of new gay friends, and my circle of gay friends have increased quite a bit, that is a happy thing for me, because I can be my gay self in front of gay friends... I don't have to put up a facade and pretend to be straight like when I'm around my straight friends. Its not that I don't like hanging around my straight buddies, coz I love and treasure them to shreds and would do anything for them, but sometimes its tiring hiding the real me from them all the time.

Anyway, knowing lots of people also means going out a lot more, and because of that my grades have suffered and took a plunge. I regret to say that this certainly is another thing I ain't proud of. My parents spend a fair bit on my education, and I really shouldn't repay them with bad results. That’s already 2 bitter sweet events of my year.

The final thing worth mentioning is that I've started to hit the gym more this year, this year I go at the very least once a week. I can feel that I'm a tad bit healthier, but certainly I have yet to lose my baby fat, haha yea I think of them as baby fat (despite my age) coz I'm hoping they will go away when I grow up (as in grow older), lol.

Anyway, my resolutions I hope to achieve are closely related to my downfalls of 09. Firstly I will try my best not to get overly drunk anymore... Drinking socially is fine, but I think I've learned that drinking is not only bad for your health, but when you're overly drunk... You might do silly things, like unnecessarily outing yourself. The next thing is that I wanna make sure I find the right balance between my social life and my study life. A balance meaning a lot more studies than social, because ultimately my profession is a student, so yea... Since its my last year of uni, its really time to put my head down and make the final year count.

Finally I also hope to be able to maintain a 3 times a week visit to the gym, and my goal isn't to build bulging muscles like them body builders, but my focus is to tone up, lose all my baby fat (yes, I've already decided thats what I'm calling them) and get fitter. I guess since I've made up my mind to pull up my grades... This also means there isn't going to be much time to hunt for a mate, so that is going to have to wait. I'm not saying if my other half shows up in front of me I'm not going to accept him - I will if the right one appears, its just that for now I wont actively be searching.

With that, I'd like to wrap up my last post of 09. I'd like to thank everyone reading Finding Relevance for taking a few moments every week to check out my blog, thanks for your support and comments :) lol, keep them coming. And finally I wish ya'll a very very Happy New Year, and may all of your New Year resolutions be fulfilled. Hugs.

Signing out.

Censoring Censorship

I recently got into an unpleasant disagreement with a friend over one of our intellectual exchange of ideas last weekend. You see, she was very upset about the Malaysian media censorship board because apparently they broke an age old tradition. In the past, most of the censorship of the media (mainly movies and T.V. programs) were done by an older more elderly group, probably 40s or 50s, of censor officers. But recently instead of up holding the age old tradition when the older batch of censor officers retired, the board instead hired a bunch of young (I mean to say the following term without stirring any racial issues) tudung clad fresh grads to man the censorship board. By the way for all non-Malaysians, tudung is the local term for the head scarf that Muslim women wear.

So anyway, my friend was livid and felt that these fresh grad girls weren't experienced enough to actually work on the censor board. I think she was hoping for me to agree with her and start criticising the powers above that broke the age old tradition. I on the other hand decided to criticise something else, and that was what got us into the heated argument, err I mean intellectual discussion in the first place. The reason? Instead of questioning the appointment of the supposedly inexperienced girls, I questioned the existence of the censorship board all together and also their role.

In my humble opinion, I think that a censor board should be monitoring and categorising films based on age groups but what they are doing now is far from that. Nowadays anything remotely sexual (a mere kissing scene) or violent gets totally edited out from the film or T.V. program before the general public can view it. I question this act because I feel it may be a little over doing things and is quite very much so unnecessary. Do you mean to tell me that even after putting a Rated-18 or Rated-21 tag on a film, it still need additional censoring? What the heck... Are our adults in Malaysia really so immature that they cannot tell what’s right from wrong and need the help of a censorship board to edit out sexual and violent scenes? Maybe.

Certain people I spoke to recently are of the opinion that scenes containing sexual references or violence need to be censored because there is a chance that the public will watch something on screen and then follow suit to do it in real life. Hmm... I always thought monkey see monkey do was a kiddie thing? Thats why we have age ratings for movies, right? Once again I ask... Are our adults here not 'adultish' enough to tell right from wrong and will imitate what they see on T.V. Maybe.

But to edit out scenes from a movie is a desecration of art, if I were the director or an actor/actress in the film, I would find this act of defilement insulting to all the hard work I've put into making the movie. I mean lets face it, if 'Sex And The City' is rated 18sx, and the word sex was in the title, would it still be appropriate to censor out the sexual scenes? Ain't this is an adult comedy for adults... Does it really need censoring? Apparently.

I can only imagine a documentary on T.V. about the great Michelangelo, he was gay apparently, and the documentary was about all his greatest work done in his creative lifetime. But guess what, the segment about David was censored out because the sculpture was naked... It would have been a blasphemy to Michelangelo. But in reality that is something that can happen here.

It is sad that there are people whom feel our adults aren't grown up enough to tell right from wrong, but it is even more sad if they were actually correct. Did we go wrong in our decision on the scope of power and portfolio of the censor board? Or did we go wrong in the moral teachings of our people? I guess the censor board are always going to continue doing what they are doing today, whether the reason is politically motivated or the reason is to keep crimes such as sexual or violent assault cases down. So I suppose illegal DVD peddling is always going to be around as their goods need not go through the censorship board. Should I 'sigh' out or 'sign' out...

Signing out.

Friday, December 25, 2009

A Merry Merry Christmas

Someone asked me if Christmas started becuase there was once a fat guy that got into a car accident on a snowy night and became santa clause. Huh??? I was like... you cant be serious mate.

Christmas is the day Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, so like any other cultural or religious celebration, its about family because of the birth of Jesus Christ and its about a time for giving, because the Lord gave us his only child. So it doesn't matter what religion you are, you can still probably take this time to appreciate our loved ones around us and spend more time with our family.

A Merry Christmas to everyone from Lucas.



Signing out.

Bending A Straight Twink

So last weekend I went out clubbing with my friends... I was firstly at Zouk, but then ended up at MarketPlace, lol. Mind you it was with two different groups of friends... The straight ones at zouk and obviously the gay ones at MP. Luckily I didn't have to pay to go into Zouk, because MP had a hefty charge of forty ringgit that night... I could really feel the pain when handing over the cash to the bouncer...

Usually mp members are allowed to bring one guest in for free, so I usually don't pay to go in. Anyway, that night mp had some guest dj from Sydney... So members weren't allowed to bring guests in, and I had to pay for my own entrance... :( the guest dj was very normal, he or she, played mostly latest hit songs as well as RnB hits. I generally think Malaysians (both gay and straight) are very easy to please. You just have to play us a lot of latest songs and RnB, and we will be very satisfied, and think that you're the best dj ever. Well obviously dj-ing is not just all about latest hits, but most of us are clueless about these things. So anyway, that dj was supposedly great, so that’s why I had to pay the expensive entry fee just to enter.

Not much happened that night, I really don’t know why I paid so much to get in. I like to dance, even though I cant dance for nuts... But that night the dance floor was soo packed, it was like sardines packed in a can trying to dance. If any of you ever take public transport, imagine trying to dance in the tram, train or bus during peak hours when everyone is crammed into one tiny compartment, if you can imagine that, then you are already picturing the mp dance floor that night. Not to mention everyone was sweaty from the heat (temperature) and the dance movements.

One interesting happened that night that really got me thinking... You see a friend's friend actually brought two straight guy friends with him to mp. Why he decided to bring them along - I don't know; but the more confounding question would be why did they agree to come? Even for me I was rather reluctant to pay forty ringgetoos to go in, but these two straight guys paid to come in? Wtf? Okay I really shouldn't complain because one of them was rather cute and I wished he was gay. This brings me to the main issue I want to talk about. The behavior of some of us that night (me included in thoughts), could be the very reason why straight guys dislike us.

You see a number of guys there were like, 'woah your straight friend is hot’ 'you're sure he is not gay?' 'watch me convert him'. The two of them also went to the over-crowded dance floor, and some guys were totally grinding in to them and trying to dirty dance with them... Assuming that they really were just two regular open minded straight guys that followed their gay friend to a gay club, the sort of behavior from many of the guys there that night might have scared them away from gays for good. I feel that we gave them an impression that almost all of us just wanted to get into their pants, and seriously... If I were straight, I would be terrified.

By trying to 'feel up' or attempting to 'convert' every open minded staright guy we meet, we're just painting them the image that we are sex hungry creatures that cant keep it in our pants. And that is the very image we don’t want the general population to have, cause that will only breed misunderstanding and fear of gays into their minds, I recall a wise man once said, fear leads to anger, anger leads to hatred, and hatred only leads to suffering. So these gay fearing straight folks will only turn into homophobic bigots and that leads to our suffering.

So maybe next time we see an open minded straight guy hanging out with a bunch of gay guys, we wouldn't be in such haste to try and convert him, because that might give us a bad image. Of course I am assuming both the straight guys there that night really are straight and just very open minded, some may argue that they could be curious, bi or even closeted, but lets give them the benefit of the doubt. So remember to think twice about trying to seduce or convert a straight guy, because if he really was straight, then these sort of actions would make him scared of us, and he wont be so open minded anymore; but then again if he was really curious, bi or closeted, then it would be a wasted opportunity not to do so, lol!

Signing out.

Monday, December 21, 2009

A Blue Moon Post

I’m now back in Malaysia for my so called holidays, but in essence I would be working for most of the holidays. I have previously applied to work at an engineering related company for an internship position, so that is what I have been doing for the past two weeks back in Malaysia. I’m quite happy I decided to do this because I get to meet a lot of new people and learn new things on the job. Of course the down side is that I don’t actually get any free time on my holidays.

I have to work 5 days a week all the way up until Chinese New Year next year. So my work schedule or rather my life schedule is now pretty routine. I wake up at 6:30 everyday so that I can shower eat and drive to work. It is quite a drive away and that’s the reason why I have to wake up early and also leave early. I have to leave before 7:20 otherwise the traffic build up can be quite bad, and I could be stuck in the traffic.

After a lot of hassle I have finally gotten a gym membership at the True Fitness for a three month period. At first they were very reluctant to give me a three month membership, and told me that the minimum contract period was four months. They offered to suspend my final month to a later period when I come back to Malaysia the next time, so that I can use it then. I was however reluctant to do that because it goes against my financial learnings to pay for something o wouldn’t be using in the near future.

So at first since True didn’t allow me a three month membership, went to Fitness First to enquire about their prices. I think the two gyms must be in cohort or something, because they wanted me to sign up for four months as well. However the difference with First is that they have a passport system, whereby I can take my final month with me back to Melbourne and use it. First is also slightly cheaper than True but the nearest First branch is a pretty small branch compared to True.

I went back to True telling them if they gave me a three month contract I’d gladly sign up, but still they refused… and there even was some mi- understanding, cause at first they offered the three month contract, but when I was about to pay, they switched back to four months. So obviously I was a bit annoyed and left without signing up for anything. However surprise surprise, the evening of that night the guy called and agreed to give me a three month contract.

Yay! So now I drop by the gym 2-3 times a week after work for some fitness workout. I am a fairly chubby person… I like to think I’m born that way (lol, blame the genes). Anyway, hopefully these gym sessions will help keep me on the healthy on the inside and better looking on the outside. I ain't greedy, I just hope to look like one of the guys down there :P

I'll be trying to update my blog more often, now that I have gotten in to a work rhythm.

Signing out.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Bloody Discrimination

Before going back to Malaysia I bought the December issue of DNA :) it was a cool issue because they had many pages of swimwear models to usher in summer in Australia. Anyway, an interesting article appeared in this issue of the magazine… and the debated gay topic is whether or not gay men should be allowed to donate blood.

Apparently in Australia, just before donating blood… you have to answer a series of personal health questions and one of them for men is “Did you have sex with a man in the past 12 months”. Well if you did, then you are not eligible to donate blood in Australia. This has sparked widespread anger within the GLBT community in Australia, particularly Tasmania… where by the GLBT community there has tried to take the case to court under the anti-discrimination law.

I cant say that I’m particularly pleased about this form of discrimination between blood donors, but also I guess I’m not as offended by it as some other gays because I personally hate needles and wont be donating blood anytime soon anyway.

In fact there is another story about me and a blood bank that infuriated me more than reading that article. You see once, sometime last year, when I was walking around campus I was approached by this man asking me to fill out a survey for the Red Cross. As usual I expressed my disinterest in the matter and tried to politely walk away, but he was quite persistent in saying that it would take less than a minute for me to fill out. So I thought to my self, I guess filling in a form wouldn’t take long… and would do much harm anyway… so I filled it in.

Well silly me I filled in some personal details as well such as my hand phone number and e-mail. You know what happened, roughly a week later, a nice lady gave me a call and said that I can just pop in anytime in the next two weeks to donate my blood at the blood bank in my suburb. I was like, ‘WTF!’. I mean I know donating blood is good and all, but I hate needles… and I don’t fancy donating my blood. I was actually quite angry at that phone call because I never agreed to donate any blood in the first place, and I calmly (tried) told her so. She replied saying that I filled in this survey form agreeing to do so. That brought be back to that shifty guy that ask me to fill out the ‘survey’ in uni. So I sort of gave her a piece of my mind saying that they cannot just ask people to fill blood donating forms in disguise of surveys. Well I guess at the same time I knew it wasn’t her fault… and it was probably just that shifty guy profiting from selling information of ‘donors’ to the blood bank. I mean seriously, I’m Malaysian and I don’t even donate blood in my own country, why would I donate blood in a foreign country. I hate needles, period.

Thinking back now, I should have just told her that I was gay and had sex in the last twelve months… hahaha that would probably have deterred her… anyway…I guess in the bigger picture it is unfair that gays cannot donate blood. I mean the reason behind it given by the Red Cross is that gay people are more prone to catching HIV and other sexually transmitted disease. This maybe true with some gays that sleep around, but isn’t this the same with straight man and women that aren’t choosy in their sex partners? Coz I know some of them that sleeps around just as much. Not allowing gay men to donate blood is really just a form of discrimination.

Hmm… the Red Cross’ explanation is that they do not discriminate homosexuals, because apparently lesbos are allowed to donate blood… only gay men aren’t allowed to do so. Erm in some ways I can understand why the GLBT community is offended… its not really the Red Cross discriminating homosexuals and not allowing them to donate blood. But rather it’s the Red Cross stereotyping gay men as sexually charged individuals that sleep around. This is most certainly not the case for most of us (definitely me) so I guess the blood donation ban does infuriate me in that sense.

Oh well, why donate blood… as a friend of mine says, the blood bank is just a sophisticated organisation run by vampires to harvest their food. And if I may say so myself, this fact seems to be strongly backed by quite a few literature, particulary the Twilight series. And I’d just like to add that Jacob is sooo fucking hawt!

Signing out.

Monday, December 7, 2009

A Matter Of Pride

Hmm… since its important to have pride in being gay, its important to know what our gay pride flag stands for :)

Hot Pink stands for sexuality
Red stands for life
Orange stands for healing
Yellow stands for sunlight
Green stands for nature
Turquoise stands for magic and arts
Indigo stands for serenity and harmony
Violet stands for spirit

The flag was originally invented by Gilbert Baker, the flag was first used in the 1978 gay pride march in San Francisco. However the eight coloured flag was soon reduced to a seven coloured one with the Hot Pink removed. This was because at the time, hot pink wasn’t a commercially available colour, and so to mass produce the pride flag, the hot pink had to be officially removed.

In 1979 a year later, indigo was removed from the seven coloured pride flag and then there were six. This was done so that during that years pride march, the colours could be equally divided on the marching street.

Whats the reason behind all this pride? Well I recently watched a recorded version of the 60th anniversary for china… apparently my parents thought it was good for Chinese all over the world to take pride in china’s achievement so far. And while watching the anniversary at Tien-An-Men Square… I was utterly shocked when I saw the pride flag embedded in the marching colours of the Chinese anniversary ceremony. Maybe China is more open than we think, and we should give them more credit.

I assure you that none of these pictures have been doctored in any way whatsoever. They are as seen on the recording I saw. Amazing right?

Signing out.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Measure Of A Man

So its been a long long while since I last blogged. Basically my exams is to be blamed for my absence in the blogsphere. Anyway, that’s all finally over and I’m actually back in Malaysia now… for my summer holidays. So something I noticed in some of my fellow bloggers posts were mention of free range chicken and free range eggs. I choose to take no side in the debate on whether free range livestock are better, but I feel its important that some people understand what they are fighting for.

I’ve heard somewhere before that a measure of a man is not in how well he treats his peers, but of how well he treats his inferiors. Haha, yea that’s what the title is all about… it isn’t really about measure any body parts in particular. So yea, I guess in some obscure sense… our live stock are considered our inferiors, and the way in which we treat them is a measure of how good a person we are.

I’ve seen scary pictures about livestock being mistreated, how they are confined to a small space… some barely moving more that a foot a day, and they are also supposed to be pumped full of medicine. The rational behind this is both evil, but understandable. How issit understandable? Well for one thing, our modern society has come to a stage where by eating meat as a form of protein has become a norm. This is certainly different from the stories I hear from my parents’ generation in the past. They always told of stories about how happy they were to have been able to eat chicken only during festive season… and apparently that’s less than ten times a year. Nowadays, we consume a lot of meat, particularly I think Malaysians consume a lot of chicken, because its not only cheap, but it also doesn’t conflict (much) with the halal issue- as most chickens are slaughtered the halal way in Malaysia anyway.

So imagine with the rising number of chicken consumption… is it actually practical to condemn commercial poultry farming and only go free range all the way? Let conduct a little thought process… suppose half the Malaysians consumer an average of two pieces of chicken a day, half of 20 million people is 10 million… and so lets say we averagely consume 20 million pieces of chicken a day. And the standard chicken is usually cut into nine pieces… so 20 million by nine is 2,222,222.22. So lets assume that its 2.2 million. So on average we eat 2.2 million chickens a day which comes up to a grand total of 1.7 trillion chickens a year. And remember this is just ‘if’ half of Malaysia eats an average of two pieces of chicken a day… I’m willing to bet that this amount estimated is probably less. But anyway, with such a huge number of chicken requirements, I guess it only makes sense to grow the chickens commercially.

And the rationale behind keeping the chickens confined and fully pumped with medication is simple, if they are kept confined its easier to round them up when its time to transport them to the slaughter house. I’m not sure if any of you tried to catch a ayam kampung (village chicken) before, but it is very difficult. Imagine how hard it would be to catch 2.2 million free range chickens a day just so that they can be sent to the slaughter house 0.o and the reason why they are pumped full of medicine is to make the grow faster… we would definitely need a lot of space if we wanted to only harvest chickens that grew at a normal rate. I think commercially farmed chickens nowadays take only 45 days to grow, but a supposedly normal growth-hormone-free chicken takes more than 3 months to grow? (correct me if I’m wrong here, cause I’m not too sure of this figure). So commercially, if we farm poultry the ‘cruel way’ we would need to have at any one time 2.2 million times 45days of chicken alive. But if we did it the free range way and not spurt the growth of chickens with growth hormones, we would need to at any one time have 2.2 million times of 90 days of chicken alive. That’s twice the amount. And thing about it… that’s 198 million chickens alive at any one time… cause it takes time to let the chicken grow from the egg stage to the slaughter stage. Imagine free range wise, if there were 198 million chickens alive at any one time and we are to give them one square meter of space to run for every chicken, that would be a grand total of 198 million square meters. Wow… a lot of space if u ask me.

Vegans would fight the battle a different way… instead of requesting farmers to not farm poultry the cruel way and switch to free range techniques. Their solution is much more extreme… and that is we should all give up eating meat all together and just eat vegetables. It is technically possible because we can get our protein requirements from the bean family. So whats the problem here? Apart from the fact that most people aren’t willing to give up meat (me included) there is also the fact of a possibility of a shortage of vegetables if everyone switched to just eating vegetables. Imagine if everyone only ate vegetables, would we have enough space to plant all the vegetables we need?

Space aside, vegetables also bring the huge problem of herbicide and insecticide usage in commercial vegetable plantings. Commercial use of these chemicals in the plantings of vegetation is very harmful to our planet, rising the concern of further polluting our (already quite polluted) water source and also the threat of hastening global warming.

Also a lot of commercial vegetables farmers in the world are now switching to planting crops related to biofuel, and there are mentions of a possibility of shortage in vegetables in certain parts of the world because of this. This is because its more profitable for farmers to plant crops for biofuel, such as sugarcane and corn. These crops are much higher in price due to their demand in making biofuel. So if everyone in the world switched to eating purely vegetables… would there then be a global shortage of vegetables?

My advice is simple, and haha frankly quite rational. As it goes now if you don’t feel bad eating meat (eggs included) farmed the ‘cruel’ way… then you most likely wont be swayed by anything you read. So my advice is for everyone to carry on as they have always been- remain status quo. Because not everyone can afford free range chicken and eggs, and not everyone can switch to just eating vegetables. So… haha I guess there isn’t much meaning to this post, but just to raise awareness on both sides of the debate of free range farming. Personally, I eat free range stuff but do not condemn the supposedly ‘cruel’ way some farmes grow their livestock. Hehe, I like to always remain politically correct. Cheers.

*the figures used in this blog is only based on my own thought process on the number of people eating chickens in malaysia. I did not consult the Malaysian poultry board.

Signing out.