I Enter The Working World Tomorrow

Ever since I was in Year1, I have been hoping, praying and wishing that I would get Johor when I start my compulsory three year service with the government.

The reason is very obvious. Chee Kiang has three years with the Singaporean government as well.

With fingers and toes crossed on a couple of Fridays ago, it was written in the letter from the healthy ministry that I was indeed due to report at Jabatan Kesihatan Negeri Johor! I was ecstatic!!

Long story short, I thought I could get my way again the second time around but as expected, Johor Bahru was just wishful thinking for now and here I am in Kluang, feeling nervous about my first day of work tomorrow.

The stuff going through my head seems to be even more than the feelings I had about finishing dental school and graduating. It just seems like a different ball game, this working thing.

Prior to driving to Kluang, I had a very difficult time finding a place to stay. Kluang is not quite real estate heaven, no one bothers to list any properties for rent on any of the property websites. But fortunately I had a junior from school, Vivian, and a new friend I met on twitter, Jonathan, (thanks Jason for introducing us!) who each gave some suggestions as to where I should stay.

Google maps became my best friend and I think the GPS is probably the best thing since the mobile phone. Seriously. Papago is actually better than Garmin in terms of refreshing rate.

The point is….I have to try to do this on my own. I’m scared but at the same time I am excited. I have to keep reminding myself that I am not here to be a student, I am here to work and earn money. Like ACTUAL money that gets deducted for EPX, income-tax. I’m still trying to take it all in. Walking into the KWSP office in Shah Alam was still rather surreal for me.

I still feel like a freaking student!

I was of course a little disappointed that I got Kluang (the other choice was Kota Tinggi). But at least I am in Johor. All this while I was just blinded by the fact that Chee Kiang and I can shorten our distance for the first time in almost six years but when I reported for work at the hospital, the seriousness of the job settled in and I think the motivation is sinking in as well. I’m not just here because I love someone, I’m also here because I have a purpose to serve. I’m pretty gung-ho about this new job, if you can’t tell. I heard that my clinic will have 100 patients a day. That sounds pretty awesome either way.

Kluang is only three hours from home and about 1.5-2 hours to Singapore..see lah if I want to drive or something. I can even take the KTM from here!

Being working adults (wahhhh), Chee Kiang and I will probably have less time to see each other if I was posted back home. But with me being in Kluang, seeing each other would be easier and by seeing each other more, we get to be in the same line of thoughts as we grow through this phase of our lives. We have so much to think about for the future – not just marriage lah u kepo aunty – but like where we actually want to live, what we actually want to do with our professions ..we need to settle down somewhere. And without constantly talking about it, we can never reach an agreement.

With discussions of big issues, come disagreement I’m sure. So if we maintained our distance of over 800km and seeing each other only every 1-2 months, once, (sometimes we are lucky enough to have reasons to see each other for three weekends at a go, or a few days of holidays together when we were still in uni) we won’t be able to talk about the big stuff and ideas would individually form in our heads as we grow up. We make up our own minds about what we want in life and automatically assume that’s what the other one wants as well.

But being here, nearer, we won’t have to spoil any rare weekend by disagreeing about something that we want together in the future. That’s the idea of why I chose Johor. 🙂

My stomach keeps clenching whenever I think about my first day at work. I worry about arriving late, I worry about making first impressions, I worry about parking spaces at the clinic, I worry about my lunch! And please don’t get me started about worrying if any of my clinical knowledge has escaped my brain. SO DAMN SCARED! AHHHH!!!

This will be my first real job. It’s a definite jump from the days where I worked part time at a nail art salon in Sunway Pyramid when I was 15. From scrubbing callus from the feet of rich tai tais, pushing back their cuticles, changing the dirty water (had to row 20 litres of dirty water to the nearest toilet) every morning and sweeping the floor…..to well, being a dentist!

Wish me luck…I’ll be needing it. 🙂

My Shopping Habits As I Mature

This post on Paris B’s blog made me think about my attitude towards shopping.

She asks if we calculate our costs per wear while shopping. An interesting thought that has never ever gone through my mind! We all have some variation of judgement as to whether our purchase is going to stick around or be forgotten at the back of our wardrobes. Sometimes we regret our purchases and sometimes love it that we wear it so much to the point of embarrassment. *stares down at almost 4 years old Teva flip flops. To all my family and buddies, it is the green flip flops with the twisted strap that I wear all the time!*

I do feel that my attitude towards the things I buy maturing a little bit. I have made many foolish buys in the past. There was a time.. *deep breath*.. where I would be so happy to buy some random top just because it was like RM8. Yeah, RM8. This was in high school, don’t judge! As a result of this blind passion for bargains, I ended up with a wardrobe full of crap!

I could spend RM200 (this was a lot of money back in my college days) on a whole bunch of crappy tops and dresses just because it was cheap! I use to snub my nose at what I thought were branded stuff just because it was well, branded. And to me, back then, brands mean MNG, Zara, Topshop and Miss Selfridge. The only thing I ever bought from Miss Selfridge were some undies. To be honest, I still can’t afford it but I hope that one day, I will buy these things without thinking twice. And perhaps when that one day comes, I might not even want these brands anymore. But the point of my post is not about brands, it is about using a handsome sum of money to buy something that doesn’t look like crap!

Even if the skirt/dress is nice, it has to fit perfectly. I know this is a little bit of a no brainer, but when you are…between size 12-14 (I’m not sure)..you just don’t want to pass on the gorgeous top with buttons and ruffles in the front. The side zipper doesn’t go all the way up with one attempt, but it’s okay, you pull it to the front, suck in as hard as you can, huff and puff, pull and voila! The zipper is up! So your boobs are squashed to your chest.. but it’s a gorgeous top. Maybe just suck in your tummy when you sit down! Only RM40 for something so ..unique. Not quite awesome, because it doesn’t fit that well, but it is unique. And you buy it.

The one size too small top then sits in your cupboard and months later you wonder what were you thinking?? Multiply this scenario by another twenty or so times, I’m stuck with a cupboard full of shit that I can’t be bothered to wear. Losing weight is of course an option that I know of/have considered/on my New Year resolution list, so don’t lecture me about that. Shhh.

When I was in school, I remember thinking that a piece of clothing that was about RM30 was pricy! I’d trawl through the RM15-20 clothes rack and be so happy, picking out things that I think will suit me. Think tank tops that ends at my midriff with cartoon flowers printed on it, tops that are made from lycra, spaghetti tops that also barely cover my tummy, miniskirts with no cutting at all…. ughhh…what was I thinking?! I once bought knee length boots that I only wear in my room. I would have to sit down after 10 minutes because the heels were not made for walking. RM50 for a pair of Vincci boots! At 80% off!! I had to have it because it was CHEAP! Who cares if it was not practical?!

Great things don’t come cheap. Great pieces that actually look good are hardly found in the bargain racks of a random shop. Great bargains only come by once in a while and not everybody is blessed with that skill to hunt.

I have become so particular about material. Cotton shouldn’t feel like the texture of a hotel’s laundry bag. Satin should not crease. Chiffon should not be super scratchy. Stretchy material should NEVER feel like Lycra!

Oh and BAGS. I am so particular about them too! My criteria for a bag is usually 1) it has to be a big bag 2) the material should be suede. Most bags with no brands (my bags don’t come with brands… why must I pay a few thousand bucks for a bag?! I still don’t understand that universe!) that cost about RM20… I will stay clear of it. Unless I’m in Bangkok, it’s a whole different story. But bags that cost below RM30 will fall apart within a week. True story. Not only that, the material is so disgusting. The thinness of the ‘suede’ material is so disappointingly pathetic that I don’t even want to step into that shop. I would pay about RM50 to RM80 for a nicely built bag with a good thick suede material. I can’t waste anymore money on bags that are so cheap in texture to the point that it is disgusting! Sometimes you get those bags with super thin PVC that you can actually see your reflection in it! THOSE ARE THE GROSSEST BAGS OF THEM ALL! Only one rule: A bag must be made of a thick material, whatever material it is.

But speaking of bag, I seem to have the lousiest of luck with them! How do you stop a bag from tearing? 🙁 My bags have a life span of about 3 months tops. My heart always breaks when a great bag starts tearing.

While we’re on bags, I need to slot in a little commentary about designer bags. I respect girls who buy it with their own money though I can never understand why the love for a brown bag with a bunch of checkers on it or some hooked half rings printed all over it. I feel the love for Chanel though, but not enough to spend an entire month or two’s salary on a bag! But tell me, do designer bags break? If they really don’t, I might have to rethink my bag buying habits.

As for shoes, I don’t have to be particular picky about this one. A good pair of shoes has a certain weight to it. It cannot feel light as air. The heel or the wedge has to be made of something heavy, it shouldn’t feel like cardboard. Some shoes do feel like cardboard wrapped with fabric. I hate those.

I find myself touching the things at Diva longingly but I cannot justify spending RM30 on a pair of earrings! Or RM60 on a necklace that I know will be left to rust after wearing it once or never. It’s not about loving ‘branded stuff’ when you’re talking about Diva. They are a whole different ball game. You can, but it is hard to find such quirky/quaint jewelry. I know some blog shops sell such sweet pieces but the price is usually crazy. Like..RM80 for a necklace that will only tarnish in a couple of months kind of crazy. SIGH AM I TOO KIAM?

As I said, now that I am older, I seem to demand more of the things I want to buy. I’m choosing quality over quantity..though I need to curb my hairband addiction..but the thing is, I can’t settle for the below RM20 stuff anymore. Good quality things don’t come in that price range. I want to pool what money I have and get the nicer stuff! But until I have secured a job, I can’t even afford RM80-RM100 stuff on a regular basis. As a result, I don’t end up with anything. T_T

Blog Shop or Online Store?

Maybe I am wrong but I think the Malaysian blog shop scene is lacking one major thing: A forum.

The few sites that we have, namely lowyat and malaysianbabes are quite inadequate.

There are so many questions that I want to ask about having a blog shop and my best bets are to consult top blog shop owners and popular blog shop reviewers. I assume these people are the blog shop connoisseurs.

With The Sticker Monster, I am not sure if a shopping cart will ever work out. I do offline sales too when I have the time, go to bazaars or even meet up with customers one-on-one. So say if an online customer has checked-out her orders and paid via paypal or maybank2u, but at the same time I have sold that exact same piece, the one and only piece, how do I go about it then?! That is why I have not gotten a shopping cart yet as I can foresee all these issues. ;|

I do wonder what people prefer to see when they wanna browse. Do you like it all in one page like how blog shops are? I have seen online stores that have a huge following, registered their business, have a dot com etc all pointing to the fact that they are a real and proper business, yet maintaining the blog shop layout. But doesn’t it give a more professional feel when everything is in a store layout?

I am so confused. 🙁

I have plans to register The Sticker Monster..not that I can live on stickers..but better to do so before any authorities come after my ass for the few cents in my pocket. I’ve already got a dot com for it though I wanted it to be thestickermonster.com but it is already taken. SO SAD RIGHT!! T_T It apparently belongs to some dude who sells stickers for bad ass bikers to decorate their bad ass bikes with flaming skulls and the likes. So totally different from cute, pink, glittery, pop-up and puffy stickers.

I feel it is easier for me when the codes come in and I can pack accordingly, I just don’t know which way is most convenient for the shoppers. Would they be missing out on more things if it was in a store layout? Like if it remains in a blog layout, the customers have no choice but to look at everything before they can find what they want. (to a certain extent)

If only I knew a thing or two about programming. Can write my own inventory program..might speed things up as compared to my slow but stable system of excel sheets.

Paypal and maybank2u is like the best thing ever.. actually online banking is like one of the best inventions ever. I don’t know how I can ever live without it! At the end of the day I would prefer to manually give them the payment option details so that I get to interact with the customers and also, I might have to return payments for one or two items out of a long list of say…20 items, if those particular items have sold out and I have yet to update the inventory. Too much to think about!! @.@

Penny for your thoughts, anyone? Any ideas if a store layout is better or a blog shop? If I make it a store layout, is there anyway that I get them to autofill a check-out form instead of a check-out and pay kind of form?

We need a forum for the online shopping scene in malaysia!!

TVB’s Latest Drama: The Mysteries Of Love

After finishing Fly With Me (where Ada Choi is a ridiculous superhero who is conceited and obnoxious but with a conscience), I finally had the chance to start watching TVB’s latest drama, The Mysteries Of Love. I would say this series is very refreshing as I normally enjoy watching modern series more than period dramas. I find the cantonese used in the modern series far easier to understand than the ‘tau lei tau hui’ cantonese of the past. I get to learn cool new canto phrases too. Like do you know that the flab under your arm when you wave is called Bye Bye Yuk (Bye Bye Meat)?? Hahahaha. I learned that from Moses’s mother in Fly With Me.

The Mysteries Of Love has been criticized for copying a certain Japanese drama about a professor working with a detective to use science to solve cases. For someone who does not watch Japanese dramas, I am totally okay with the fact that they got Raymond Lam to portray the calm, almost sedated but brilliant Professor Kingsley and Kenneth Ma as the womanizing high flying detective. Tavia Yeung is thrown into the mix as Raymond’s love interest and she is a young police woman in this show.

I have watched three episodes so far and I CAN’T STOP OBSESSING OVER KENNETH MA!!! AHHH!!!! While we’re talking about hot actors with the surname Ma, it is with great regret and a heavy heart that I bring to you the news about Steven Ma’s upcoming wedding plans. 🙁 My mother will be very sad as well. Stay strong, mummy. We are in this together. T_T

Kenneth Ma usually gets roles as a bumbling love struck idiot (in other words, a sor chai) and has this baby talk voice going on for his other series. But in this one, he plays a cool and suave detective who womanizes like mad!

All the girls they use to portray his girlfriends are like super hot and not a single one is pure chinese except for Bernice Liu who plays his long time fuck buddy. It is a lovely new role for Bernice too as she usually gets pure, decent and angelic roles.

There have been various interviews on the gossip blogs asking Kenneth Ma if he feels awkward while making out with his costars (too many to count) and he says that if the girls start to be a little more reserved, he will hold back. I know Hollywood have hot sex scenes as well but this is TVB we are talking about!! Where sex is mostly taboo!

He has a tendency to start stripping all his chicks from the door and then kiss them passionately until they bend over backwards and then on to the bed. Then he gets shirtless. *bites knuckles* MORE MORE MORE!!!

Given his slutty ways, Kenneth actually harbors actual feelings for Bernice, who is a globetrotting career minded journalist and has no qualms about sleeping with Kenneth on a regular basis. In the third episode, Kenneth tells Raymond that he is okay with the status of their relationship though you can hear a tinge of sadness and desperation in his voice.

Then we have Raymond Lam who portrays a physics professor with a gaggle of research students flocking around him at the university. He has a brilliant mind which he uses to help Kenneth solve his crimical cases.

Now, Raymond is one of the hottest TVB stars around but this show will either knock him down a few notches on the hot TVB stars scale or propel him a few levels higher for those who dig geeks.

In this time and age, girls in general DO dig geeks but maybe unknown or less famous stars would have made much better geeks. We have practically seen Raymond Lam grow up on TVB as a typical hot and spoilt rich man’s son, a playboy, a cheeky guy, a casanova and so much more, but never a geek. Oooh, ooh trivia. He is in actual fact a rich man’s son in real life too and his classmates at the TVB academy used to call him Siu Yeh (Little Master). He has this weird side parted hair and the way he talks..omg don’t even get me started on it. I have to tap furiously on my volume key when he gets screen time. He is definitely a fantastic actor lah, I’ll give him that since he can transform into a quiet and shy professor who clamps up when he is around girls (Tavia and his research students). He talks with this vacant look on his face and is overly genuine with everything he does. Not Raymond Lam at all. Boo.

Tavia Yeung is still Tavia Yeung. So cheery as usual. I do enjoy the scenes she shares with her nephew, Hei Chai who is played by the 11 year old Lawrence Ng. I can’t believe this little fella is still 11 as I have seen him acting in TVB series for years and years! He is one of the most utilized child actor on TVB. Tavia’s scenes with her nephew is very real and that’s what acting should be about. If you have the episodes, check out the first episode of Fly With Me. Lawrence Ng portrays one of Ada Choi’s ex-boyfriend’s son. Ada Choi talks to him like a small kid, trying to win his heart. The boy’s coffee then arrives and he starts telling Ada off in a voice with a sense of maturity and cynicism that is at least 30 years older. “Tai ha lei la, dou chau lei sei cheong lah, hok mai sai yan tei tau lou kong, lei chi mat yeh yong la…~~”(Look at yourself lah, already in your mid thirties, learn from others to steal other people’s husband, what do you look like..). Sorry for the lousy translation but I loved that scene so much. Hahaha.

Oh and another memorable scene from the series is the one where Tavia meets one of her second brother’s old friends who seems to be interested in her and insisted on taking her out to dinner. He brings her to a buffet where there are kids running about and then when she says “Okay I’m going to go get food.” He stops her claiming that it is only 8pm and the buy one free one buffet starts at 9pm. What a terrible impression on a first date!! Nevermind, then he goes on to pile his plates with food from the buffet spread and even takes off the sashimi from the sushi, leaving the rice for the other patrons to take. Which is quite pointless lah, a sushi with just the rice. UGHH. Then nevermind, Tavia tries to let him down slowly by saying that she doesn’t like buffet so there won’t be a next time. He then whips out all his restaurant coupons.

The guy is such a horrible joke. If there is ONE thing a guy cannot be towards a girl that he wants to impress, it is BEING STINGY. I mean if you can’t afford it, don’t overdo the frugality lah. Just spend within your means and within the norms of society. Being kiamsiap within your own family members is fine. But towards a girl that you like?! I really felt so embarrassed for the guy’s character… which means kudos to him for an acting job well done as a stingy guy who can never land a girl. Remember guys, don’t be stingy. I’m not asking you boys to bow to your girl’s every whim and fancy, just be generous once in a while lah. A stingy guy is one of the most disgusting things in the world. Don’t worry about the girl taking advantage of you, a keeper will be considerate but will totally judge you lor if you dare to be kiam!!

As for Raymond and Kenneth Ma’s acting as buddies, the laughs were so forced. I don’t actually feel the friendship and their acting together is dangerously bordering on corny. Hope this will improve over the next few episodes. 🙂 Now I need to get back to my books and then maybe take in another episode.