Friday, December 14, 2012

Love and the Singaporean

What's up with all these sex scandals surfacing thick and fast in the media this year? Teachers, principals, uni profs, senior civil servants and parliamentarians: respectable people all, yet publicly disgraced because of some indiscretion causing the affair to be outed for the moral majority to tut-tut over.

Can we really be so shocked that people in our midst would jeopardize promising careers and social standing over some illicit hanky-panky? Perhaps these cases are an indication that our puritanical state is starting to show cracks in the facade we've so meticulously maintained until now and we're finally seeing that biology is a much stronger force than we thought we could control.

Romantic love washes the brain over with a cocktail of chemicals that messes up the logical thought process. The feel-good sensations one experiences when one is in love encourages living for the moment; the sense that nothing else matters; and -- most importantly -- reckless, risk-taking behaviour. Hence, people with the most to lose are also likely to be the biggest risk-takers regarding matters of the heart.

Here, I'm confused because on the one hand our population is suffering a baby-dearth while on the other, we're criminalizing behaviour that gives rise to more babies. Could this strange dichotomy be at the heart of our population problem -- that the people we marry are not the ones we are in love with?

Before you overreact, let's think about the common Singaporean courtship ritual. It's planned, organized, structured. The proposal comprises making plans to purchase public housing for the couple; the wedding is a programmed event that follows a generally predictable order of must-dos scheduled to the second; child-bearing brings a new round of planning; while child rearing likewise follows a narrow, set pathway or bust.

If love is reckless and encourages risk, the Singaporean marriage pact is hardly that. Without allowing room for the chaos of romantic love, the Singaporean couple isn't likely to change its plans regardless of whatever "baby bonus" is thrown at it. And if wild, crazy romantic love isn't found in a Singaporean household, is it so surprising that dissatisfied partners may be finding it elsewhere, in more dangerous places, with more disastrous consequences?

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Only mad dogs and Englishmen...

Took a stroll around the Marina Bay area simply because the sun was shining. As I soaked in solar rays, I could feel the symptoms of various maladies melt away. Staying indoors in a sedentary job sometimes requires the occasional venture outside to blink at the brightness of the day.

Here's a view of the Bay I've never beheld before. The new boardwalk almost completely encircles the bay and if not for how solar-averse our population is, it would remind me of beautiful Sidney Harbour. Well, that was my impression, anyway. Odd being a tourist in your own country.

In other news, Doc Nair agrees that Maui's bladder health is improving. The silly boy provided his own evidence.So scared he is of the vet that he peed in his carrier... more pee than I've ever seen him produce in a long time. Bath time when I got him home, which necessarily meant a shower for me too, new scratches and a ruined T-shirt to show for it.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

System upgraded

Cybermind is currently offering a 25% discount on MSI Intel mainboard packages. That's an offer I couldn't refuse -- despite what I said earlier about upgrading Mr L33t. Shelled out just over a grand for an i7-based system, 8 gigs RAM and a GTX660Ti video processor. Nice.

The old parts are going to become my in-house project: upgrading the living room antique Win XP-running PC to be compatible with the first decade of the 21st century at least. I've never put together a whole system from scratch, so wish me luck on this one. I'm sure I kept the manuals around someplace... hmm.

Monday, December 10, 2012

What's my beef?

McD's new BLT quarter-pounder with cheese. Good idea putting fresh veggies in the burger. Too bad about the fake bacon. Hence, special order: LT no B.