5 things women look for in a man
I had a conversation with two lovely girls the other day. One attached, one not. And it turns out, all three of us had the same ideas on what we look for in a guy. And the best part of it was, everything we wanted in a man was freeee! No, we did not require the man to buy us a bag or a pair of shoes every month. (but if you want, can lah. thanks.)
Singaporean men, you claim you would need a handbook to understand us, and today, taadaa, I’ve just made one for you.
*DISCLAIMER* These notes apply to the average Singaporean girl, in this case a girl between 18 to mid-20s who comes from a middle-income family and is considered a normal chick by her peers. (If her friends hate her and bitch about her… RUN FOREST RUN!) If you’re dating an underaged girl the rules are completely different. If you’re dating an early 30s and upwards woman, the rules, as mentioned, are completely different as well. Also, all these points are my own opinions and thoughts. So don’t be hatin’ on the women populace. *DISCLAIMER*
Approach all these with an open mind, and you might find that they are all simple, understandable notes.
"IF YOU ASK ME ONE MORE TIME WHERE I WANT TO EAT FOR DINNER I WILL LOSE MY MIND." - I have said this to my own boyfriend a hundred times.
Aren’t men supposed to be the man of the house? The leader of the family and the king of the remote control? I don’t know about you, but I’m old fashioned in that I prefer the man to lead. I will gently nudge you in the right direction from behind.
In short: Manliness is when you make a stand and stick with it. It’s sexy.
Make decisions when you guys go out, it shows that you wear the pants in the relationship, and when she whines that she wants to go somewhere else, then you should graciously follow where she wants to go. See, this means you still wear the pants, but you’re kind and generous enough to give in to your lady. You become the bigger man! Isn’t that better? You look better! If she really has a place she wants to go in mind, SHE WILL SAY IT. We not shy, cause we know you will do anything to make us happy cause you love us. Right? Right?
Most importantly, if you made up your mind about something, stick with it. Don’t be wishy-washy and change your mind. That’s our job.
Honestly, I can’t stress this enough. Singaporean girls, plenty of them are quite manja. They want to be pampered and taken care of, so if you’re looking to attract a girl, MAKE decisions and learn more about her so that you can make decisions to SUIT HER TASTES. No more complaints, no more arguments. Or fewer lah.
"I’M NOT STAYING HOME TO WATCH YOU PLAY ASSASSIN’S CREED ANOTHER NIGHT." - date nights gone awry.
There comes a point in the relationship when the romantic dates trickle away, and he stops planning dates and you get mad. You find both of yourselves staying home a lot because he is “tired” all the time and he can’t decide where to go.
In short: If you don’t plan, you’re not a man.
Women can multi-task right? Which means that if they have nothing to do, nowhere to go and no one to take care of they will get bored. And grumpy. Really, it’s important to set aside time for your SO at least once a week to do something out of the ordinary and different. It doesn’t have to be a new restaurant every week, but it has to be something new. Or explore a place you haven’t been to in a while.
Pack a picnic, take a walk on the beach. Explore Haw Par Villa if you haven’t done so in 15 years. Head to JB for supper or even bring her to your favourite childhood mama shop to buy some barang. At least be proactive in saying, “let’s do something different today.” and be consistent by making sure you keep the romance alive at least once a week. You’ll find your SO smiling a lot more.
"YOU SAID YOU WOULD FIX THE TOILET DOOR. YOU PROMISED THAT YOU’LL FIX IT." - A frustrating argument that will just set both parties on fire.
Never cheap talk. If you promise your SO something you better do it. If you don’t want to do it, then don’t mention it at all. Don’t back out and don’t change your mind.
In short: If we promise by our pinky, keep the promise or I’ll break your winky… I mean your Dick.
We understand when certain circumstances prevent you from fulfilling your promise. We understand. But if you simply change your mind or forget we will get frustrated and we will NOT understand. As your SO, we’re trusting you with important things and in not being able to keep a simple promise, how can we know that you’ll be trustworthy enough for us to put our trust in you? Think of it this way, if you and a bro make plans to meet every week for a beer and he keeps bailing on you, would you want to call him out still?
Yeah, you won’t. You’d move on.
"I JUST NEED A FEW MINUTES ALONE." - Usually happens after an argument.
Contrary to popular belief, women don’t need to be in your presence 24/7. Clingly males piss us off. And trust me, mysteriousness is sexy. And when she’s mad, give her time. Especially after an argument, when both of you need time to cool off, give each other some space!
In short: The tighter you hold on, the more you’ll find her slipping away.
But gentlemen, everything in moderation yes? Give each other space for some quality me-time but still find time for each other at the time. Overly clingly men who need to know where you are 24/7 and who have no friends of their own just tells us women that without us you’re pretty much an invalid. Be independent, take some time out to have football games with your friends or a beer or two. Trust me, when you get home, your SO will welcome you home with open arms. Give each other time to miss each other as well.
Give a girl some breathing room!
"SERIOUSLY. WHY AM I ALWAYS LENDING YOU MONEY? AND SOMEHOW I FIND THAT I’M PAYING FOR ALL OUR MEALS." - extreme situation when the man has nothing but a 20c coin in his wallet. Then you carry wallet for what??
Okay, this is a very touchy subject, first there’s is no official definiation of financial stability, but personally I define financial stability as the ability to afford the things necessary to live your lifestyle of choice. Hence, it changes with your lifestyle choices. If you’re a student, and you can afford to live like one (frugal etc) then good for you. But if you’re a working adult and you can’t afford to live your lifestyle of choice (e.g. if you’re a party person who open’s bottles at every club every night) then I assume you are NOT financially stable and that you have no sense.
In short: Live - as my mother constantly reminds me - according to your means.
This applies to relationships in the biggest sense, if you have promised your SO a certain lifestyle and you can’t afford to provide it for her, you’ll have a very unhappy SO on your hands. If you have a girlfriend who wants the world from you and a branded bag every week, sorry lah, your ah kong better be rich or you better earn a five-figure sum every week.
Women simply hope that the man they choose to be with can provide and take care of them. Financial stability simply means: Being able to provide for her and to pamper your SO once in a while.
Anyways guys, thanks for reading. I hope I clarified something for you. Don’t get into a relationship without knowing all this. If not you’re going to have some really unhappy arguments. It takes two calm, level-headed people to get out of an argument, if you’re in an adult relationship, behave like adults yeah. Discuss, don’t use words to hurt each other.
The nail salon
Do you know how difficult it is to get a job in Perth as a student?
It’s terrible! I lived there for a year and a half and was conned by a Vietnamese nail salon, stupid enough to walk into a brothel to work there and had many rejection phone calls from stores. Really builds character I say.
I had almost given up on finding a job. Everything was either too far away (I had sold my ‘89 Toyota Corolla) and I couldn’t get there or they wanted me to work mad hours and I just couldn’t give up studying for it.
Angry Vietnam Man
One day I got desperate enough and walked into the nail salon at the shopping centre about 20 minutes walk away from my home. It was a typical Australian nail salon, run by a Vietnamese couple. All the workers were conversing in quick Vietnamese and it looked like I was definitely going to be the standout if I worked here.
No matter, I thought. As long as I got money. Since I had no experience the boss told me he’d start me off by going through training for two weeks. Unpaid. “Come in as often as you can.” he said and told me that once I get good enough he’d pay me about $100 a day.
I worked 9 to 5pm daily, which meant a 8 hour shift, which meant less than $15 an hour. This was the worst pay ever because the minimum wage in Australia was $18 for students my age. That’s right, I was earning less than someone working in MacDonalds. Taking the whole Bachelor of Arts careers to a whole new low.
I sucked it up, said okay. I’ll “train” for free but at the end of my two weeks I wanted to start getting paid. Beggers can’t be choosers.
The grand art of pedicures was entrusted to me. I had to learn to cut cuticles, buff and shape nails, do a massage, paint and shave the bottom of heels the way an Vietnamese could.
I had come to realise that pedicures and manicures were no easy feat. In fact they were one of the toughest things I had ever had to do. Kudos to the team at the place, I couldn’t imagine working 6 days a week picking at toes and fingers. Eventually I picked it up, too bad I was so slow I spent an hour trying to perfect the entire procedure.
At the end of my two weeks I had successfully finished pedicures, could do an average, but still decent, pedicure. One customer even asked for my name so that she could become MY regular. But I had a long way to go.
For that one customer who had praised me, I had one who thought I was horrible and walked out without paying because I took too long. That I admit was my fault, but she was only one!
The first day of my third week they told me, “We’re going to go two more weeks without paying you.” My jaw dropped, you’re kidding me right? I spent two weeks picking at feet, digging the dirt and sometimes manure from women’s feet - she was a vegetable garderner -, shaved the bottom of their feet, had shavings all over my tights and my nails officially ruined by people constantly applying and removing acrylic on them and I STILL wasn’t getting paid?
"I don’t want to waste your time. And I could be studying. As a student I’m only allowed to work 20 hours a week but here I am working for FREE, 3 days a week, 8 hours a day. That’s 24 hours a week, without pay!" I told the boss. He said if I wanted to quit, he’d understand. Good. I’m glad we came to that agreement. Then I asked for compensation. Because even interns get paid a sum of money right? "$100." I thought that was a reasonable sum.
He almost threw a fit. That small Asian man looked at me with almost accusing eyes. “People pay me to train them. You should be paying me instead for training you.” Dafuq?! I used a pair of nail clippers to peel a damn lemon because you told me too! You ungrateful, nail-buffing, New-Balance wearing, stereotypical little Vietnamese man!
Two ladies who were eventually going to take over the store saw reason and gave me the $100. They told me, “We understand that it’s hard as a student.”
Well, that was one job opportunity down the drain. What did I do the night after I came home. I chewed all my nails off.
Disgusting habit, I know. But it was my small petty way of taking revenge on that nail palour. Looking at my tiny, ragged nails now, I regret that cause of action. I have stubby fingers once again and it’ll take about a month to grow them back to a pretty length without cracking.
Looking back at that few weeks, I must have worked harder than I ever had anywhere else. Even today, the acrid smell of nail polish remover and artificial nail powder makes me sick.
The misfortune of being fortunate
I live in a condominium with my two parents, two siblings and a domestic helper. My parents owner two cars between them. On weekends, and some nights, I’m able to drive one of these two cars.
It happened that on the day I drove my father’s car, I decided to take a new route to work. Unsure of the way, I had taken out my phone at a red light to check the map. But, with my poor sense of judgement and my goldfish-like 5-second memory, I looked up and thought, “eh! Green light!” and hit the acceleration.
It wasn’t a green light. It was just a flash of light at the corner of my eye.
Immediately, I hit the car in front of me with a loud, “thunk”. Horrified, I hit the brakes and sat in the car freaking out. I was stuck, I couldn’t move the car for fear it might lead to some incriminating evidence of my carelessness. Well, duh. Of course it would. Whether I moved the car or not, this was a clear example of carelessness.
The feeling of horror deepened as the very angry Chinese man stepped out from the Honda i-VTEC and knocked on my window asking me to come out. I shut my eyes for two seconds hoping he’d go away, but well, that’s not how things work in our world is it?
I stepped out of the car and he exchanged some very angry words. All in Chinese, which right now escapes my mind because 1) Chinese is not my strong suit and 2) I wasn’t thinking straight.
Then he became calmer and started asking for my insurance and driver’s license. We were stopped opposite a bus stop, so after taking a few photographs of the accident - he had a bruised, dented bumper and the car plate number had fallen off from the car I was driving.
I don’t remember the exact specifications of what happened next because his pregnant wife stepped out the car.
I remember feeling sick then. I hoped I hadn’t damaged her, or her child. But as she went to the bus stop, bag in hand, she seemed fine. Quiet though. I apologised to her as her husband called his friends as he too, had never been in an accident before. As the man and I were exchanging details, his wife got to the bushes behind the bus stop and started gagging. Vomiting. That terrified me. Was I the cause for her sickness? Was it morning sickness? What was it?
I had to call my mother. See the biggest problem of all this was that I DIDN’T have car insurance. My mother, furious, but calm, came over in the second car, explained to the man what had happened, but he wasn’t sympathetic, he wasn’t moved. He was furious. I understand. I would be too in the same situation.
At the end of the exchange, his friend came to pick up his wife, he waited for his friend to come help him settle the insurance. I drove home with my mother to fix the car. At night, I texted him apologising. He replied, “Remember next time drive car must be careful.”
Who knew that one sentence would cost so much?
Last night, I received a letter from the man’s lawyer. He wants to claim $8,481 from me. $5,000 for his wife vomiting. I don’t know whether this is valid or not. I’ve never been in this situation before.
I should turn to a lawyer. I’m fortunate right? I live in a condominium with my two parents, two siblings and a domestic helper… My parents owner two cars between them… …
But that is my family. I, a 24-year-old fresh grad, three months into my new job and hoping to purchase a flat with my boyfriend, am poor. I have about $1,500 to my name and an $8,481 debt.
Truth is, because of my background, I might not able to afford a probono lawyer. I can’t apply for financial aid because I am blessed. Isn’t it funny? I’m blessed with good things, but because of that, I can’t afford a lawyer.
Did you know HOH legal services charge $200 per half-hour for a consultancy?
I’d like to say I’m sorry for the man. I was. I was sorry I hit the car, I’m sorry his wife had a huge shock. But I believe as of this moment he is still driving his car, and his wife whether pregnant or has given birth, is fine and healthy. Some tell me he’s milking me for all that’s worth. But I don’t know. I’m pretty much at a loss.
Right now, I’m less sorry for him. Instead, I’m more worried about a debt that might set my life back by a few years.
What can I do? Anyone? Who can I turn to that won’t cost me $200 a half-hour? Or should I pay him $8,481? That’s not even counting the fees from the damage of the car.
If you do know of a lawyer, or if you do know of someone who has gone through the same thing, please let me know. I need help.
A Peranakan woman’s pride is in her kitchen
Something awful happened yesterday. I was shown up in a cooking contest. By a man, a fellow journo.
It all started at the Philips Airfryer press event. My colleague and I had gotten there early so our lovely PR walked up and asked if we would care to volunteer for their mini cook-off to be held after the presentation.
“Sure, why not!” I saw the words escape my mouth and might have regretted a little. But I figured, since I’m done for, I might as well whip out some Peranakan cooking skills. And what’s the difference between a wok and an airfryer right? They both fry stuff. I will kick ass.
Oh how far the mighty fall, as my pride got the better of me, I found myself awash in a state of panic when faced with a room of skeptical – and mostly bored – press people.
Given a plate of butterfly-ed king prawns along with rows of condiments and flour we had a 15 minute Masterchef-esque pressure test to create something delicious. I peeked from the corner of my eye to watch my competition cooking up a storm, “very professional!” said Bryan Wong of my competition’s egg beating skills.
I was slowly dunking prawns in an egg wash.
By the time my competition had finished his prawns and put them into the basket provided by the airfryer (we fit all 6 king prawns in, quite a feat I must say) and had them frying away for 8 minutes, I was still covering mine in breadcrumbs.
The end results were disappointing. Bordering embarrassing, Bryan Wong and his no-holds barred hosting had already pointed out my messy work-top, my canned-food inspired pineapple-in-longan salad (I can’t help it! You give me a bowl of longans and a bowl of pineapples I think of one thing and one thing only! Canned pineapples in longans!) Apparently, it’s very HDB, explained our dear MC of the afternoon.
HDB or not, I was hoping my egg-wash, cornflour, egg-wash and panko-breadcrumbs prawns would be delicious. I maintained my placid expression and smiled and posed as the camera flashed to take photos of our 8 minute air-fried “creations”.
And to get my mind off the fact that my competitor’s (who is a lovely person by the way) prawns were probably going to win, I kept my mind on the fact that I managed to use the airfryer. It’s about the weight of toddler and the height of a large microwave. It kind of works like a microwave too. But instead of limp, hard-as-rock fish fingers, you get crispy, just-fried fish fingers.
They announced the winner (chosen unanimously too!) after calling us up on stage and congratulations! He won an airfryer. I walked home with a food processor (THANK GOD, cause it’s exactly what I needed okay.) and my pride in shambles. I spent the rest of the afternoon meeting new people, trying food made from the airfryer, I didn’t get to try my creation by the way.
The food surprised me, I thought it’d have a healthy taste of air-fried food, but really, it tasted just as oily and crispy as their old-fashioned counterparts. 80% fat-free and 100% guilt-free with the same tastes is their promise.
Cooking skills not included though.
Had my boyfriend, mother, father, sister and brother been lying to me the whole time? Had my chicken roulade stuffed with pesto and mushrooms been a lie? Had – gasp – my buah keluak and chap chye been an actual disappointment?
I should be shoved down a well or made to squat in my mama’s kitchen to tombok chili till I learn the ways with the airfryer..
I had lost a contest for deep-fried food.
I don’t know if my pride will ever recover from that, but for now, I’m pulling out the old wok and going to fry rempah the old fashioned way – until I see my sambal oil seeping through the sides – yes. I will stick to using oil in my food.
In response to No Shave November
Hello men of Asia.
I come bearing a message of hope.
Please, do not participate in No Shave November.
Unless you can a sprout a beard in two weeks instead of those nasty strands you call a mustache - I call it pubic hair - I have to impart some important advice.
If you wanna get some action, stop all that distraction.
Yes, that is what we call those sad, wiry bits of eyebrows on your chin, a distraction. You know you’re Asian right? A pale, yellow skinned male? Your genetics have claimed it impossible for you to grow a full-on man beard except for that old-wise-man long wispy white scarf-types those ancient Confucius look-a-likes use to stroke when reciting poet while drinking tea. Your genetics have made it impossible for a bush to grow anywhere else but down.. there.. The rest of your hair will be thin and ticklish not thick and scratchy! Both of which are qualities a man-beard should have!
Now, now, don’t despair. It doesn’t matter if your beard can’t come in right (not even a 5 o’clock shadow my good man! Pubic hair I say! Pubic hair!) your woman will love you all the same. You might think otherwise, but it’s true. We Asian women, unless we’re looking for a hunky white man, will go for Bruce Lee types over Arnold Schwarzenegger any day. You can kick their asses with kung-fu anway.
Wait, you all DO know kung-fu right?
Just kidding, I know you all do wu-shu instead.
Okay okay, I’m sorry, you don’t need wu-shu, kung-fu, wing chun or whatever Tom, Dick and Hairy martial arts. You really just gotta act like a man. The manliness doesn’t come with a beard my brother, it comes with the action. Look at Manly Man Meme, yeah he has a beard, but his defining traits are that he has probably been shot by 400 bullets and can still wrestle a crocodile to the ground with his toes. Yeah. MANLY. His beard didn’t do SHIT.
So shave that pathetic attempt of a beard and pick up a chick with your sexy words and extremely sexy chivalry rather than a not-so-sexy attempt at a beard.
I’ll see you at your wedding.
You’ve been ADVICED.
My boyfriend’s long schlong
Caught your attention?
Good. Cause today’s question of the day is: Is it okay to talk about schlongs? Or in particular your - or my - boyfriend’s schlong?
When did it become okay for everyone to talk about schlongs and other things that five year old’s aren’t even aware are used to make babies?
I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with asking about it, I’m just curious as to know when it started being okay. Was it Carrie Bradshaw and her feathered friends? Maybe some of their uninhibited breakfast talks rubbed off on all of us twenty-somethings and made us think, “if only I had a group of girlfriends whom I could share my dirty little secrets with and then we’d discuss it and after four episodes the problem will disappear and I’ll move on to the next chapter of my tv series life.”
No, lady, that’s not how it works. The problems never go away and you don’t move on in four episodes, but! Talking actually does help! And I give it my stamp of approval.
Deep down I know I should keep ALL my little secrets to myself. But, - and I’m sorry - I can’t. I can’t keep myself from opening up to a couple of my nearest and dearest. And I think that that’s something most girls face. We just can’t help but discuss our love lives - in great detail - with our brunch/breakfast/lunch/school/work mates.
Who else would I go to if I needed advice or just someone to listen to? The priest? tsk. Men. They don’t seem to phantom the great need for women to talk things out. Women.. Are different from men. They don’t offer a hundred and one different pieces of advice, they listen, they sympathize, and really, that’s all we want. If I want advice, I’ll ask and they’ll give, gladly. But if I just want a listening ear, they’ll give that too. GLADLY.
I’m of the opinion that communication is key in every relationship, and I guess I’m also of the opinion that communication between friends is key to your relationship too.
Men, you’d never know, but a girlfriend’s conversation has probably saved your ass more than once without you knowing it. Plus, in comparison with others.. how else would we know whether yours is a schlong or a short? Food for thought. Sausages anyone?
For all those curious ones, my boyfriend and I have only gone as far as to link our pinkies and swear eternal love by the fires of gondor. We’re THAT pure.
10 Places For Date Night In Singapore
For A Smoking Hot Date: Burnt Ends
The term ‘burnt ends’ refers to the perfectly charred, smoky surface of the fatty parts of meat. Here at Burnt Ends, Chef David Pynt makes full use of the huge wood-fired oven and grill, promising well charred, but moist and tender meat. The Onglet is outstanding, and is not a dish to be missed here. This 18 seater shophouse is definitely one to visit, but just be sure that the both of you don’t mind coming out smelling a little smoky!
Order this: Onglet and Pineapple with rum and vanilla ice cream
For A Unique Journey: Ding Dong
If you enjoyed Open Door Policy, you’ll want to visit Chef Ryan Clift’s latest venture- Ding Dong, which offers reinterpretations of Southeast Asian flavors. There is a wide range of small plates to choose from, and you might be tempted to order them all.
Take a slow, tantalizing journey with your date as you make your way through the menu, and cap the night off with Asian inspired cocktails at the bar on the second floor.
Order this: 5-Spiced Lamb ribs, Vietnamese scotch eggs & Malacca Chendol 2013
Who says Singaporeans aren’t romantic?
You know many people - mostly Singaporeans - insist that Singaporeans aren’t romantic at all. Simply because before proposing, we buy a flat first. We iron out all the nitty gritty details of government-funded family planning before the rock is flashed and the knot is tied.
I used to think the same way too.
I’m a firm believer in romance and think that without it, a marriage is nothing. So woe was I when I realised I, after much deliberation and resistance, found myself face to face in that very dilemma. Ring? Or HDB?
It seems the time has come for B and I to start thinking of crossing the line from pinky holding into official *gasp* hand holding. The right location has opened up for us and we are strongly considering going for it. But my inner voices are struggling with each other, romance over practicality.
Should I wait for the proposal before applying for a flat? But if I do, I’ll be 30 by the time I get anywhere close to stepping into the house! What was I to do? The practical option was to save money (with a sudden influx of grants from the government) and wait for the romance to come later.
Moping at a Dim Sum shop with one of my girlfriends, I shared my thoughts with her and to my surprise she scoffed and said I was being stupid. “You know he’s the one right? You know that the minute you put in the money for the house there’s no turning back? This IS your proposal!”
My proposal was to turn on the computer and apply for a 4-room, 4 walled apartment? It brought back memories of of an old commercial on television where a couple is sharing a plastic cup of Bandung in a coffee shop. The guy pauses his sip, passes the cup to the girl and just as she holds it he says, “Do you want to get a HDB with me?” She smiles bashfully and some Goverment family propaganda pops up. The girl smiled bashfully. Why would the girl have smiled bashfully if she wasn’t aware of the romance in that awkward bandung-assisted proposal?
Because, and wait for the revelation, it IS romantic! Not in the traditional sense but in that one sentence you are committing your whole life and about all your life-savings as a youth to another one person. With an engagement ring you could just as easily turn it down halfway through as switching off the telly in the middle of a tv show cause it was his money you are spending not your own. But with BTO, the minute you commit to the down-payment, both yourself and your man have committed your CPF savings for slightly over 25 years of your life. You have committed your life into the hands of another as has he. You’re both in it together and I think, this dependence you now both share, is romantic. It shows real trust, faith and most important, love and confidence.
The question you should be asking yourself is not how huge a diamond can he get you, but can a man trust you more than you trust him and vice versa?
For those rom-com affected girls such as myself, romance comes in all ways and shapes and sizes and you never know what’s missing till it’s gone. Proposing BTO might not be the most visually romantic proposal, but it sure takes a lot of guts and balls to commit your life-savings to a girl you think you’re going to marry.
* This doesn’t mean you can avoid getting me a ring though. FYI.
Job hunting thoughts
You know when I started out with just a diploma in my hand I told myself, “Look here you. Clearly $1.7k is the most you’re going to be making with that little scrap of paper. You’re gonna have to do more than that!” And so I worked for a year and got myself into an overseas university.
Two years later, I find myself with a second scrap of paper, with “Degree” scrawled onto it and I’m just as lost as before. I was rejected from a job that offered me LESS than what I made as a diploma holder. What?!
Where did the money I put into getting my degree go? Aren’t I supposed to make it back through the HIGHER pay that I would receive with my degree?
Clearly. I made a big mistake. And now the job market is worse than before, and I’m typing away at my dinky computer hoping that the 40-odd resumes I sent out would mean something to someone out there and they would welcome me with open arms. And a reasonable pay. More than what I made as a diploma holder.
"Don’t be picky…" Said my mom. "You deserve it the low pay for wasting my money going overseas." Said my dad. "Suck it up." Said my best friend who’s still stuck in school. "Don’t expect anything higher than $1.2k." Said the lady at the job agency.
I’m SORRY. Am I really expecting too much when I ask for salary that is higher than what I used to earn two years ago? I thought inflation was going up! Shouldn’t my pay be going the same way too? And I went up a notch on the education level! Doesn’t that count for something? Apparently not.
You know when I hear stories about the thousands of students stuck with student loans who have nowhere to go, I tell myself this: “This will never happen to you. You’ve got both a diploma and a degree. Plus you got skills girl!” Oh the lies I tell to keep me warm at night.
Face the facts, your degree and diploma will count for nothing if you don’t have experience. It will count for nothing if the jobs you apply for have a thousand other applicants as well! What makes you the 1/1000 to get that job? Your degree and diploma will count for nothing in our job economy because of hiring freezes, and the need for more operational and technical jobs rather than brain jobs.
Stay home. Pick up the wok, pick up the bread pan. You should start learning to cook, and clean. You should be a housewife.
Anyone knows how to start making a sandwich?
5 late-night things to do at Punggol
*note: the pictures are NOT mine. They’re basically from the net.*
This is pre-Punggol:
Empty, quiet, really nice for kite-flying.
This is Punggol now:
It’s pretty amazing. How everything went from nothing to a whole lot of urban HDB, cloying amount of people stuffed into blocks of flats. But when there’s people… there’s a 101 more things to do!
Here’s a little list on the exciting things to do in Punggol I discovered over the past two years:
1) Prawning and Fishing @ Hai Bin
It’s late at night, you’ve got pretty much nothing else to do, I’d suggest going down to Hai Bin for some prawning fun. It’s four pools of different seafood, two have prawns, one has crabs and the other fish.
You can actually hear Hai Bin, before you step into the area. It blasts top 40s music or club music throughout the night. I’ve stayed once till 3am and the music just doesn’t stop. It’s pretty amazing, you see groups of “professional” prawners sitting on the cheap plastic white chairs, and staring intently at the water, their nets practically teeming with prawns. Then you see another group, usually teenagers, huddled around two rods all desperately trying to catch something and failing miserably. Still it’s a great place to catch up with friends - albeit in an unglam way - and have a bbq with what little prawns you catch.
Fishing there is an adventure though. You would think, in a tiny pond, what the heck can you catch? A lot apparently. Next to the yellow-lined splash zone, you can see red buckets full of ice and fish. Huge fish, big and heavy. When you’re there, everyone’s staring intently at the water and the minute someone get’s a bite on their hook it’s a war between man and fish. Water flies everywhere, people have to pull up their rods to get out of the way. Then sploosh! Someone throws their hand in the water to grab the fish by the tail and it’s over. Quite a lot of fun.
Location: 6 Tebing Lane #01-04 Singapore 828835
Tel: +65 6447 8693
2) Have A Picnic @ Punggol Waterway Park
The new Punggol Waterway has to be one of the most beautiful places being developed in Singapore right now. B and I took a stroll from his house all the way to the other end and it was just stunning. There were a few joggers, some couples enjoying the night, and at the kids play area, some kids were running around even though the water works hadn’t come on yet. For one Valentine’s Day we climbed up a hill and had a picnic at twilight. Really peaceful pocket of nature in the midst of the hustle and bustle of city life.
3) Have a buffet dinner at Sakura Charcoal Grilled and Shabu Shabu @ Marina Country Club
We went a bit mad the last time my family and I went there. We had a non-stop munching fest cause my grandma was in the mood for some steamboat and charcoal grilled noms.There’s fresh seafood, a ton of meat, free-flow drinks and it was really fun cooking it on your own.
No lie though, getting there’s a bit of a hassle, it’s deep in the heart of Punggol End and it’s only accessible by car or cab. The food’s good, the location is great, I’m a sucker for boats and water and the fact that the Sakura buffet place is in a boat yard is pretty awesome. After dinner we took a stroll, played a few games at the old-school arcade and just had a nice walk along the boardwalk where all the boats were lined up. Totally worth going if you’re looking for a nice place to have dinner and a relaxing after dinner walk.
4) Visit the horses @ Gallop Stables
What? Horses in PUNGGOL. I KNOW RIGHT. I was shocked too when I saw their friendly looking heads pop out from the stables. Right at Punggol End, just before you hit the jetty and the police post, you’ll see a bunch of funny looking caravans. They all belong to a new attraction, the Gallop Stables Punggol Ranch. It’s so idyllic. With a rustic, cowboy feel, caravans surrounding a big field for the horses and the sea just a few steps away.
The ranch isn’t open yet, but the horses are there already and everything is built. They even mentioned a rabbit park being built. Definitely a staycation worth having, horses surrounding you, the ocean just at the front and bacon and booze just next door.
5) Have late night munchies @ Bacon and Booze
It’s a new pub just next door to the stables and opposite outward bounds. The best part about this new pub is the fact that there’s FREE PARKING. I can’t take it, going to clarke quay, Bedok 85 or Simpang Bedok is annoying because you’re constantly fighting for parking. But at Punggol End, there’s no one there to compete with at the dead, dark-as-a-grave carpark of outward bounds. Bacon and Booze has a really small menu, a few bar bites, sharing platters and only four mains. The mains are not served after 6.30pm. But the rest are available up till 12am and sometimes 1am.
It’s sinful, bacon, and alcohol. But imagine a piece of bacon rolled over some sweet, caramalised onions and topped with a tomato on a skewer. Heaven. The cherry tomato bursts in your mouth, pair that with the greasy, guilty-pleasure of bacon fried with fat and it’s a party in your mouth.
They have a great selection of beers, ciders and Japanese alcohol (whuutt!) at the bar. my favourite being Pure Blonde. It’s a hard beer to find in Singapore. But I also love the ciders.
The prices are a little steep, and the bar is still in the midst of renovation, we saw chairs still piled up at the side of the entrance. But I have great hopes for this little B&B. (haha geddit?) Hopefully they’ll expand their menu and make it a little more welcoming in time.
How I feel about B&B is similar to my feelings about Punggol. It’s great, a little rough around the edges, with much happening at one time. But it definitely has great potential. I’ve a feeling in a few years, Punggol’s going to become the new East Coast.