Trading emotions

I remembered how I was when I got thrown out of Claire’s, penniless, to mean every inch of the word. Somehow the will to live kept me afloat, and am glad am still alive today.

I have resorted to trading recently. It was something I had deemed untouchable in my sane days. But after learning that everything in Singapore is about undercurrents beneath the still, all about personal wealth more than group planning, and I heard a thing or two from a very cute gambler I met in Sydney, I decided to give it a go. Well I think a big portion of the population trades these days, I might be wrong. It is just a guess that trades differ in magnitudes and timeframes, depending on your emotional make up. 

During the days shortly after Claire’s, I tried to learn the finance game. there were loads you could go to at the sgx. It is interesting how I gathered lots of collateral but never got down to the real thing. But just a few days ago, I signed up at FXGM, and I never thought it would make a gambler out of me. I woke up this morning and realized it did just that and now I am writing to myself to find out what actually went wrong.

Alright, so it all started out as innocently filling in details. Then I got a call from an advisor of FXGM who made me feel extremely comfortable about putting money with him. Initially asked what the min sum possible to deposit in order to start trading is. If I did not remember wrongly, the sum quoted was 200. I had a think about it and decided it safer to, if possible, to drive it down to 100. Another call came along from the same comfortable voice, asking if I would be comfortable putting 500 instead. When I asked him how much I would be losing possibly, he said if I trade 10 times a week, lose 7 out of 10 as a beginner, and putting 60 pips as take profit, and 20 pips as stop loss, I will make a profit of US160 a month methodologically. I lost 20 on the first trade. Then i got a call from a guy called theodore who sounded like mafia. I had a hard time trying to listen to the guy so I thought to myself it would be interesting if I could figure out a few tricks on my own, and so bought and sold the jpyusd simultaneously. I reduced loss to 2.50, and made a loss on another trade of 38. (taking into consideration that I am supposed to make a 20 loss on each trade). Then I got another call from mafia later yesterday evening asking me to put in 1500 euros and take a stop loss this time of 200 and take profit of 300. I said yes because he sounded like a real professional and he sounded very much like he was trying to help. Problem was I did not consider many sides of this trade. As it is a bigger trade, it required more time, but I fell asleep. Also i got used to the bigger fluctuations, and didn’t panic as much as I did the first two trades. The trade was very slow so I was taken off guard when it started sliding down the scale to hit 200 at about 6 am this morning. What shocked me was I forgot my initial intention of only recouping my losses, I missed the point when the figure went up to probably more than a hundred when I was asleep and did not look at the chart in the last few hours of the trade. It was such an awful trade. My heart beat was the fastest I ever remembered outside the bedroom.

I am trying to figure out how I was able to make a trade like that. Emotions are very powerful. Ability to handle high stress while making the right decisions is crucial. “Stay calm”, the first voice told me. I think every adult who wants to grow up should experience trading. I have found out a few things about myself in the last few trades. It has turned out to be something that is not just about the money but more about human nature. Id say i am so bad at it i wouldnt bet to make money, but it is something I like to do everytime I can afford it. Tell me why but why does earning money this way feel wrong, or should it be something i should get used to, just like how it was when I was selling ads. Well but guess it’s a good thing for the government. If someone can allow people onto platfoms without national identification but very high deposits, I can imagine a growing population of people who find it more profitable to go stateless since they can trade on a boat to avoid taxes and living expenses.

The revelations of Gym-innings

Ok, had it a little rough. Spent the last year or so getting myself out of debt. Got into debt out of faith and it sure was an arduous but most wonderful journey. Shortly after spending on CCVG, which was something that didnt happen, I moved into Cp and had a fairyland experience with 10 other people. Somehow i couldnt trust the others to take care of the boy enough to continue
giving tuition. It also happened that I fell sick on the fateful day i was supposed to go for an assignment and that just ended my relationship with janice, the agent. Throughout my stay, I continued to work hard on renewable energy, putting that second after getting yoogz’s education back up to scratch and above other things like putting food on the table. It was really fun then cos i would slip out of the magical premises after yooga had fallen fast asleep for a cup of tea downstairs and receive strange sightings, imagine the
lord of the rings. We also had a mini cinema and a look out point, and people started spending more time at home. I believe we had the wildest scenes indoors in Singapore. But no pictures allowed, rules similar to invitation only clubs. We had a bit of discotheque once and yooga would fall from the upper bunk to two naked adults and continue sleeping very soundly despite the very loud noise every now and then. After hearing the noise on the very last night of our stay, one of the very beautiful girls who stayed in the same flat said to me:” you need to know someone well before you do juju.” juju is Tagalog for sex, I guess.  I wonder how she knew that i tend to head straight to the bedroom quite very soon. I think it came from my mom, who just wants to cut the crap all the time. She does not believe in marriage. It’s just get on with it and leave. Never mind about the flowers. She has got lots of flaws and I can’t believe she has resorted to praying daily to statues she has relocated to the dark dark storeroom. I pray for her now. She’s providing food.

Back to where I was at CP: After lots of praying and living 3 months to the fullest ( I didn’t exactly like the idea of pilot on mars very much, or even the alternative of having li’s kid),  miraculously, i got hired by Recharge, a renewable energy newspaper. This happened a month after being thrown out of Claire’s.  I can’t believe what I was thinking, how i got evicted, but it’s just so hard to take anything seriously in Singapore, until I started work at the trade newspaper,which was 10 heartbeats too fast for someone who was recovering from eviction and getting things at home with grandma and a new househelper, citi, the girl who is to be my twin but not my soul mate, sorted.
Initially thought that the Indonesian girl, having lived in Singapore long enough, should have the capacity to act in accordance to  schedule and common sense. Unfortunately, no. Everything felt very awkward and despite citi, my aunt’s apartment remains sans citi like.

Cant blame the girl. It has always been her job to simply follow orders and tolerate harsh treatment. It is a sin to think. On the 15th of Feb, when I held the paper and it felt thinner, i knew the lack of ad bookings had taken effect. At a 5% discount,max 25% discount, there werent takers. I panicked and decided to read the paper outside the office after visiting the Raffles hospital for a sore throat I got from an overdose of chips. I was at the lobbyof Hotel Ibis, plastic sandals straddled my feet. And unsurprised, a day later, I got the birthday fire from the job. I mean, i was such a drab at work, and I couldn’t even afford the wallet the boy sitting behind the partition from my desk  carries. He declared it to cost some 10,000s of Singapore dollars and it has such a sophisticated brand, I cant even remember the three syllabled name. “we are of a different class.” he said. “don’t talk to me.” hurt beyond repair, I went on to work everyday like that. Wanting to fit into the group of nice nasties, not wanting to offend, yet feeling thrown off by how I should and shouldn’t give comments at the same time. It was simply perplexing. These people drive and own real homes. that made me want to work things out at home. I took half a day off on the 15th and bought the thinnest mattress in the market for the upper bunk of the bed in citi’s room, telling myself that I would need at least a bed space to get rested and then to work properly. But before resting properly can happen, I had to be in her room physically so that she can see herself as an equal human being and treat herself better so, and hopefully that would stop her treating me so awkwardly.

Maybe she was used to treating herself as a thing. She even slept like a thing. So I slept in the daytime once so she gets it. I thought to myself this girl doesn’t really know what it means to be human. It’s really hard to come back after a full day to see the thing taking care of the boy in a thingly way. Just so unfortunately, job and jibe waits for no man, and I was fired before Citi and home matters had the time to fall into place. To put it objectively, not being too hard on myself, i didnt fulfill the 40 phone calls I was told to make. Which is ok actually when you think each call is to be just 5 mins. But it felt very hard with a lot of other things that are very wrong happening in the background.

To be honest with you, I stopped painting the picture with li permanently in it when i found out shortly after moving in that it was all about politics.
I mean, he can enjoy the highs and thrills of the game, but all i wanted wa
s to be a homemaker and not some go between gal of sorts and having an impact beyond a comfortable measly few. I felt betrayed, he called me a poisonous chef. To know that all he really wanted was a pilot on Mars, which was clearly not what i was sold into when i moved in. When i knew that was the intention, i quickly shuffed thoughts of a permanent home life with the said man living on whatever little he can provide and told myself that be it, even if it were to be just 3 months if they cant wait till i get a job. But I wanted to live a magical experience with the 10 and Li for as long as it lasted. I then gave him a gigolo status, fair for one living close to a life of a female equivalent. That started me thinking about how to treat gigolos. I wonder how women can care about gigolos. I mean men can care about prostitutes by not forcing them into the act too abrubtly, and buying lube. you know, if the gigolo cant get it up, he just cant get it up. He had been on serious viagra without my knowledge previously so no reason to put me on a Petri dish for an investigation into the violation of human rights. But when I really needed it and he just couldn’t get it up, I told him to get some on the streets of geylang, zen’s secret society kakis should be able to provide some, but he said no and just to look out for an old man operating out of a suitcase. The description sounded like me except that I am not male. I thought it would actually be easy to hunt down the man, without given characteristics of the fellow, and get a stash of the pills most discreetly. But I couldnt. I checked up the side effects of Viagra. Bad for men’s health, no wonder they arent available OTC. Can’t bear to hurt the guy. Looked up perky gigolos in Singapore and considered getting paid by being on the receiving end instead. But nothing realized. I am glad they didnt cos then I got the opportunity to find out for myself that a lot of sex that happens is cheap fun conveniently available exercise. I’m glad I found out now, after withdrawal, that there are clearly 3 elements in sex: physical fitness which helps to release tensions and frustrations, (let it all out, cry, fall flat and black out), fun with someone you like a lot (you can get really creative but not at hotel 81 since it’s not equipped) and a connection with the special someone. The letting it all out expels toxins and many times, you get a better complexion. Having fun is why sex is called adults’ play, and having that connection is what sets a relationship apart from the ordinary. In modern  life, when we are not out there in the wild just hunting for food, getting garments for warmth and setting up tents for safety, and when the only social life existent is not just the big family the man creates with a dozen wives, which provides much needed drama, and their children, we are in touch with people all day in the civilized society people call the city. Unfortunately, animals are at most pets or in the zoo. They don’t roam. Yoogzi was expecting real animals when we went to the Jungle cafe at little India quite recently. I had to tell him that we were going to dine with animal statues. That said, in the modern age when the most profit and image making part of businesses are housed in cities (pr,marketing, sales departments), successful people tend to be social butterflies who hold no shame. I remember an ex colleague saying how she thought the boss Alf, was horrible as his wife would always be walking in his shadow. Alf didnt care what people said. He would be what people call shameless to the core, and very successful.

Putting the above together, People, being people, get exposed to all sorts of people. The more people you know, the better you are positioned  in society. you will more often than not always experience the attraction of the opposite sex. Ex boss Sui at Eudora said this to me once: there will always be an attraction between men and women. That’s why we are made different. Initial attraction is one thing. Defining the elements so the relationship remains healthy and strong is another. So when you think about it, if a couple can get the above sorted, differences in opinion may be a daily struggle, but highly unlikely that bonds will break. But of course they are just hollow hypothesis. I have never lived a healthy relationship. It is getting increasinglydifficult to be sensitive to this especially in my blood tied family where w=
e are supposed to be desensitized and un-emotionalised. My cousin asked once when she hugged someone in the family:”do you feel anything?” And the answer was,”no.” which is the correct answer.

Even though i got fired in the end, I was glad I promised my full commitment to holy man leo stornes and gave up my my blog for the entire period of my employment, was led to take over duties by dinosaur Rex, who was a really nice guy and can smile under any circumstances. During my employment, there was prayer but my church membership didn’t last. I got such heavy eyebags they can hold quite a few bars of gold. After my employment ended, Li wrote an email to Luke stating me as the ex-gf. I know we have already broken off a couple of times but seeing the status in type plus it being said to someone outside of us made me sit up straight to have it sink deep into the plushes of my heart. The next few days saw me  meeting the people in his living family, Luke and Agnes. It’s not nice to say that his aunt and grandma are dead family, but if you want me to put it plainly: the family you do most with and feel most comfortable with would be the current and living one. I felt comfortable with them.

Enough said, then the events were followed by a phone call in which he said, “you can’t drag me into a hole. I have to work and can’t give you attention all the time.” I can’t believe what I heard not because of the words, but because of what I am now in contrast to three years back when I held a job (wasnt seeking attention) and hadn’t started appeasing relatives who have raised me in one way or another. But it was a good choice to. Brings back memories. It’s kampongish how I was raised: young aunt would play games like monopoly and card games, elder aunt would be the one to demand strict discipline and education. She taught us to swim. My mum would never return home unless she needed sleep and her role was to put me through school and never say no to whatever I wished to buy or needed in school. I know I used to complain that she spent all her money bringing me along to holidays she herself would enjoy, me acting rather like company, and I would very much have preferred if she acted like a mom much more and treated herself better. But acting her company did have it’s perks: I got to see a few other places outside of Singapo
re. Whenever we come home, she would say: nothing beats Singapore: so clean and green. She also adds everytime we get home that she has spent every penny with a slight sigh in her voice. So it did come across that the travels aren’t always what she wanted to do.

Well those days of 8.30am to 6pm malady are over. And because I hid in my room till the time I got my compensation pay cheque, I paid off my debt and am now living a free woman. Spent the last 2 months reducing my possessions to as close as nothing as possible. Still struggling to keep the boy on the straight and narrow yet not being a watchdog, and playing catch up with memory and the gym at the mo.

Rant only

So the conclusion is although the topic of rare earths made it into roundtable 1 of the Singapore International Energy Week, we, the guys in the renewable energy industry, are not going to be as hard hit as someone from say the military machines production and security sector. We are definitely not going to be upset about knowing that there might possibly be no more rare earths left for us in the future, but rather, that we are going to be really optimistic about our future in innovation, creating a lubricant of some sort, I can imagine, whose functions supercedes that of magnets. We can also look forward to the lack of mining complexities that come with the exploration of the element. No need to draft out trades and proposals. No need to get into the nitty gritties of the trade of rare earths, most of which are in the Chinese language anyway. About lithium, another metal that is not traded in bourses, we should approach it in such a manner that it is tied up to carbon, in terms of value. For governments who care about people, the cost of carbon should be so great that the cost of lithium should not be an overcoming issue. It is important to know that environments, as romantic as it may sound to be protecting them, when it comes down to bureaucrats and politicians, they are concerned about the amount of repulsion they will get from investors who are looking at investing in their country in the manufacturing sector. It is difficult to imagine governments forgoing money opportunities and job creation opportunities for the sake of protecting blue skies.

For sure, the people who are interested in innovation are the dreamy types who will be looking at the possibilities rather than the efficiencies. Think about how much southeast Asia has moved in the area of energy efficiency? Carrots are definitely not hanging low enough, meaning not reachable, and maybe not even visible to call for action by the persons in question.

We also shouldn’t be concerned with how much the world is falling behind in terms of electric vehicle integration into roads. We should think that we are going into an age where things will just work out, regardless of whether it is easier for people to be wearing masks than for governments to get a grip on reality.

It is important also to note that most things are not as they seem. A lesson learnt from photographic angles, but we are going to get the word out that we will look at the number of people who will benefit from the business of renewables and the number of businesses who will save themselves from closing down.

I look forward to the day the choice needn’t be too hard. The people who are going into the industry should not be too concerned about the gloss of the oil and gas industry, which is going to stay for a while. Rather than find the faults to them, we should look at the benefits to a different group of people, say the innovators or the scientists. Funding never should be a problem when the objective is to educate. This can be the perfect reason to improve thinking skills of people. The funding can come out of different sources, so in this case, it will be the pool of money set aside for education.

Lots of things can be done, if only we look sideways, and not upwards. The world is only made of a few peaks, but the land is wide. There is always enough space to start building your own mountain, which will have its own peak.

Testing translating Trash

Translation of first half of a blog entry on http://tigertang.multiply.com

在新加坡其中奇怪的一点是她在“性”这方面的政策。虽然我们已经把自己卖给世界为一个沉迷便秘的社会;看待“性”更加为人民责任,不为社交 娱乐(我们并不是好色的西方人或其他亚洲部分的贱人),我们关于卖淫的法规是在世界上是最自由的当中。只要你不强迫任何人进入这当工作,你有自由在“憋 闷”的新加坡卖身-一件你肯定不会在“开放”的纽约做的事情。可是,虽然我们有一个旺盛的红灯区,我们不润许出售任何黄色物品。把一份“花花公子”杂志带 进国家能使你被罚与带香烟进国的相同款数。

还有比性为个市场更有趣的是,在卧室里发生的私密行动也有所看法。很多年我们为一个国家禁令了用口交为得到最后效果的方法(技术上说,就是女士能用口交让你硬起来-可是你硬上来之后必须做其他事情-不要问我他们是怎么样强制执行这一点)。

我 们,为一个国家,还是保持在世界上少数接受婚姻强奸为一个完全合法的行为。简单地说,如果我有心情可是夫人没有的话,我把自己逼在她身上。刑法典说,是作 为个丈夫的权利得到丰富的行动,无论她怎么想(当然女子宪章不会像保护她的财产一样的保护她的身体。她提出离婚,我要抚养她。虽然她在一天赚我一个月的薪 水,我不能得到一分钱。)

可是,如果我是一个同性恋,我会和同意的伴侣在卧室的私人空间犯法。根据保守女-男性社会,润许两个双方同意的成 人做一件在卧室私密的空间会损坏社会道德。总理,很不幸的,也同意这一点,所以我们有一个法律叫做S377A。可是,总理他自己也宣称这条法律不会“积 极”的执行。

Chased out of dream home.

Forgot that I was given a month’s notice to leave the premises and took it all for granted, until the day came when I had to seriously leave: that was when my work was done. Tried to find out if there was any way I could have stayed, but Lecter Claire gave me an absolute no, saying I was pleasant but I destroyed the house. Everyone thinks she is right and that I ought to learn my lesson: to take the place you rent as it is. Not make any changes to it no matter what. The thing I will miss is the paranomic view, and the near domestic experience with Li in that space.

I managed to pack all of Yoogz’s and my stuff into the 30 centimetres on the right and left of the bed on the last day of my stay, and had his table and chair put on the upper bunk, so it was rather like a playhouse, with the little boy jumping between the two bunks. I turned the left side of the bed into a work space. When I am facing the wall while sitting on the edge of the left side of the bed, the printer’s on my left and my work documents are on my right. On the right side of the bed was Yoogz’s make do bookshelf. We had that setting for a day before Claire evicted us.

It was a good experience in that I realized how safe I really am in Singapore. I would never have done what I just did should it be elsewhere in the world. Yes I said I would camp out at the beach to Li, but when the time really came, I thought God told me to take a vacation in Malaysia. The trip to JB felt different this time. It felt less urgent and I wanted to come back to Singapore after the few hours there, unlike in the past.

Claire’s place also seemed really odd near the end of my stay, when my brain kind of sorted itself out, when it gradually felt a little unusual to have many frequent visitors. It was not supposed to be owned by anyone and no one pays rent. Claire is also an employment agent whose business requires engaging people in the house. Also the contract offers no protection of any sort but you can imagine my immense desperation to get out of my mom’s when I first decide to move out. Anything goes really, as long as I could get out.

I prayed a lot in that apartment. Somehow it took precedence over everything else. It seemed as if it was important that everyone there become well. I enjoyed making everyone’s stay happier while I was there. However, I’ve learnt that taking care of others’ interest above God’s interest has dire consequences. I think I kind of overdid it. It’s somehow difficult to stop something once I am at it. But I’m glad the last time I saw Claire, she could at least walk around the house bare feet.

The eviction was at a good timing too. Green Dollar has come to a point when I can’t have Yoogz hanging around at home all day any longer. Time to get out to the real world and hear real thoughts of people. I think Yoogz might also have suffered from some extent my trying to do everything without compromising one for another. He has gotten pale from porridge every meal and a lack of play stimulation. With the help of my 2 uncles, I moved some of my belongings at about midnight then and am now putting up at my aunt’s, sleeping on the floor until I get my mattress delivered on 3rd Sept. Gotten myself a decent bag, some new plain clothes and made some necklaces to go along with the tops so let’s see how things will roll from here.

L1-32: Faintly Red Nor White

Walked down the main threshold this afternoon which holds lorongs on both sides: Even numbers on one, odd numbers on the other. It felt unusually touristy, although I would say only for the backpacker-at-hearts. I was there at about 4pm, just when the sun was getting ready to set, so the walk was tolerable, bending towards pleasant, with a slight breeze and definitely less pollution than tuk-tuk touting Thailand.

Amongst things I saw were flea shops selling factory rejected clothing. Though only a sporadic few, they reminded me of a street at Xiao Jie, a place in Beijing, close to Houhai, which is like Singapore’s Clarke Quay. There were at most two I spotted, so it wasn’t much a lustre experience, but it brought back some dusty memories.  Known as the dustiest and most unkept place in Singapore and I suspect it is to stay conveniently that way, it made me fascinate over what it would be like to have a perculiarly clean dark fringes we call Geylang.

Clean is a very broad word. I try to keep up though most times I fall behind in cleanliness in the slump I live in now. There are 14 other people in this space so it’s hard when you have these other things to do like work on Green Dollar, be an unqualified home school teacher to Yoogz and (I hate) laundry. All of us, myself and Yoogz included, are less than domestic, except for Lecter Claire, who has the agony of shouting over my leftovers left uncovered in the fridge every time it happens.

To this day, we have leaking pipes and a choked kitchen sink, which I have chosen to leave uncared for, picking the easier option of writing this blog entry instead. Others in the house have chosen to do other things too, like watch movies, play with their mobiles and chat a lot with one another. I am less petrified with the place now that I have a tiny room to hide
in: the little maid’s chamber in which I have nicely fitted the bed in the middle of, leaving only a narrow gap of about 30 centimetres on each side. By the way, as an update: the mattress purchase did help me cut down on sleep the first night. I slept for three hours then, and it went up to 5.5hours last night, which is still better than the pre-mattress situation of 7-8hours a night so I’m happy. It has also given me the option of letting the room out to desperate travelers who have just arrived from Malacca just downstairs. But my air con pipes are still leaking and will continue to do so as long as they wish, so there would be a huge guilt factor should I decide that the room is good for at least USD80 a night.

I imagine if I’m letting my living premises turn into a dirt bank, many others who are with people who take their spaces for granted will eventually give in too. It is time-consuming to keep up. Geylang is all about keeping brawn –busy, itself being already quite an achievement if the Ah Peks are to get up and work their butts off at the coffee shops. They got lots of time, just that I wonder if they are using it to their greatest pleasure.

Pleasure is the other big thing in Geylang. The closest I got to a prostitute like situation was with Li, who gives really good sex once in a while, and on records, the best I have ever experienced on earth. I wonder how much of that really goes on around here. I was told Orchard Towers can about beat that, but like it or not, regardless of where, people start acting differently, for better or worse, it really depends on who and where, but it does change things. I can imagine the act on stained sheets and cracked floors in Geylang. In environments like this, you know the act is more a consequence of wanting frustrations vent than as a union to open heavens. So the area really isn’t hot red, nor bright white.

I bought sleep instead.

Just spent my last 3 hundred buying sleep. It’s been a while since I last spent 5 hours sleeping and yet still felt fresh in the morning. My natural alarm clock sets me to sleep for 7 hours now, after which I am still not functioning at breakneck speed from 9am. It may be because Yoogz is a person now, no longer a baby, so there’s always his voice, dvd activity and the need to answer his concerns about what I’m up to all day.

Started out the Saturday planning to shop for fixtures to ease laundry area woes. Planned to go to Sungei Road, a place that sells everything a handyman will need to build a house, but got reminded once I stepped out of my block that I now live in a colourful neighbourhood with shops in which I can possibly find what I need within walking distance. True enough, I found two wholesale shops selling clothing racks for retail shops which I can use to fit drying laundry.  The lady in the first shop has a very cheerful disposition and though she had three customers at her shop at the time, she still managed to serve all 3 enquiries, with different
needs without losing her top and in fact with great ease and fluidity. I also picked up vibes that these people got to know about the shop through recommendations. This clever woman also managed to squeeze 2 candies into the hands of Yoogz in the process, exuding an unusual generosity of a businesswoman.

I found something which allows me to dry 60 pieces of clothing if I were to put a piece on each hanger. It costs $60. That works out
to $1 per piece of clothing, and it would be the simplest solution if I were to buy it and put it on top of the dysfunctional front load washing machine just next to the working top load one, but it felt dangerously simple. So I walked out and went into the shop just next to it to see what else I could find. The owners are a middle aged couple busy screwing parts together for the whole time I was there. There were no customers except for a man quietly browsing, but they have twice the shop space of that of the first woman. In this shop, something caught my eye and so I asked for the price of it. There was a bland “$3” answer, and sadly no further speak on how the rack is to be used, or it’s features. The woman in the first shop didn’t skip that step of the sales process. She even seemed to have everything she needed to make the sale (sales tools). In contrast, I went into her shop and seeing the catalogs she had prominently displayed, I asked for the one that shows clothes hanging systems.

She didn’t have a big shop space, but she had it all in the catalogs. I found a few models of racks I thought I would like to see in real life, but she managed to sell me into getting the only one she had on display by explaining the features and reasons why the one right in front of me was the best of the lot. I quite enjoyed the experience and if I didn’t have that dangerous feeling of convenience, I would have gotten it quite happily.

The second shop left me clueless. There was so much of the same thing in different variations that it was difficult to focus on what I
need and to picture it actually happening in my laundry area. Among the two, this was the inconvenient shop that felt right, but there’s so much screwing and fixing required of the parts that I decided to let what I saw sink in first, think of the best inconvenient solution possible away from the shop and come back another day for it. If this turns out to be lesser than the convenient solution, I would buy the convenient one. But I didn’t want to buy the convenient one without first thinking through the inconvenient one first. It feels dangerous.

After that we walked to the nearest bus stop and waited for a bus that took too long to come. Then I remembered that there might be a possibility that Sungei road uncles close shop on Saturday afternoons. So I decided we turn back and took a bus to Paya Lebar MRT station instead and headed to the Pemimpin industrial estate for a mattress warehouse sale advertised in the Today newspaper.

The process of purchasing a mattress is vastly different from that of buying the right laundry hanging solution, which is a far more
complicated process. Mattresses only come in 4 sizes, and they are sold to taste, not on function. In my case, I had to sit more than lie on the mattresses to make a decision because for a bedroom cubicle only big enough to fit a queen sized bed in, the bed is going to be almost the only thing in it. The experience of shopping for a mattress can be likened to shopping for a bathtub for the bathroom. You enter a bathroom and soak in the bathtub, the highlight of a bathroom, (or a comfort room as some Filipinas call it. In the same way, you go to the bedroom cubicle and plunge into the bed, spending luxuriant hours on end in your free time on it. I have always lived in places where there’s only room for showers, so this is a nice first shopping experience of this type  for me. Even shopping for a sofa is different. It may be a place you lounge on in the living room for many hours doing a variety of activities, but it lacks the intimacy and feel of privacy that of the bathtub or bed.

So as you can imagine, buying a mattress was a simpler thing to do. At the warehouse, I got to sit on a good number of mattresses. When I came to the mattress that felt right as I sat on it, I stopped, and wanted to find out more. The saleswoman was quick and went on to say firmly to me, as if to ramp it right into my bones, “This is the right one. You know and you can feel it right? So this is the one.” When she said those words, I felt it a little like hearing the words of a friend, whom advice I come for when deciding  whether or not to accept a marriage proposal.  It’s true you can’t lie about how you feel and the only thing she said I should certainly do then was to buy without further considerations. After a little thinking about how that would wring out another 1-2 hours everyday, I felt that it is indeed quite a good bargain, especially for something I felt right about. Because there was less to explain (what you feel is what you get), the saleswoman pressure-sold me on price and freebies after she was ascertained that I was moved by the product. I didn’t have any problems with pressure-selling in a warehouse environment, and she successfully took the last 300 I have, which I painfully parted with. I could only bring myself to put up $50 for the deposit when she asked for one. She should have told me the standard procedure would be to put up at least half of the price tag from the start instead of asking how much I wanted to put up and later refusing me on it. She flipped through the invoice book to show how every customer would put in full payment and that I, in comparison, was overly hesitant. I think they should scrape the deposit bit at warehouse sales. Why agonize over how much your customer has to put in first, risking cancellations and wasting time on the same final payable. I don’t know.

Well, so I bought luxuriant sleep instead at the end of the day. It is something I have only bought on time-share before, in hotel stays. Ever wonder why you can bear watching the telly on the bed and why it has even charmed you to room service, breakfast in bed. For me, it’s now left to see how this bit of human civilization will work out in my little life. I will start my brain matter-rest-ing experience this Wednesday.

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