Did you miss me?

Wow, what a 2015 year! So many things happened that… I am too tired to really talk/write about it now. Later maybe, baby.

Okay, a short summary: quit job, started psychology class, started blogging, moved from Europe to Asia, started new job, more traveling less blogging… I missed you guys!

Anyway, now is 2016 and it seems to go even faster with other endings and new beginnings: one of my paintings  was noticed and got bought and I have been asked to create a collection.

A whole collection of 10 to  12 paintings. For Friday. It’s Wednesday. Okay, I was asked last week, still. I said “Yeaaah hm okay but huh… how about the Friday next month?” As much I wish to be able to, I can’t possibly pull paintings out of my round ass. I did not say that though I guess everybody got the point.

Also, a guy clicked on my Instagram account (where you find basically almost nothing for it was created in the sole purpose of stalking other people’s accounts) and decided to pay a massive amount of money (that I did not bargain in case he realized he was being insane) for a design I have made from a doodle of my legs. In leggings. On my couch.

My legs on my couch, yes.

Well, now my legs are on his wall in high-definition. Odd. But convenient as it pays Babylove’s art supply. Yeah, he’s already crazy about colors and paints. And my landlady proves very supportive.

Though I keep remembering this Pablo Picasso quote and feeling somewhere between uncertain and thrilled:

“Painting is not done to decorate apartments. It is an instrument of war”

Aaaah… life. Bring me some more questionings and wonders. And please please please make me strong enough to quit occasional French party smoking, damn it!

So. Did you miss me?

I swear this one is an old pic from when I thought I could be a model.

The disgusting thoughts I have in the subway – Part II

The Parisian metro, if I may give some precision.

It smells like my 158 year old neighbor’s living room.” Or what I imagine his living room would smell, given his own body flavor. I might go check if he’s still alive when I come back to Singap. Might, because as well, I might die here, in the subway, thinking disgusting stuff.

I am back from Reims. Finished writing the rest of my exams. Relieved. It was super hard, and I feel 22 year old all over again. Horrible sensation. The boom boom in my head mainly – now I have to precise that some of my best friends decided to ruin my future career and came to visit me every evening to drink Champagne. As I am weak and I don’t see them that often – mainly my weakness and my taste for sparkling wine on my strawberry pie – I kept my arms and throat wide open to receive them… that sounds nasty now. See? 22 year old.

ruinart-rose

If I add some avocado in the Deep Fried Bacon Peanut Butter Balls, will Ele eat them?” I found this absolutely disgusting recipe on DudeFood on Facebook after she left me the other night to take her shared not Uber at all (it’s illegal in France hinhinhin). I sent her the link but, as she is on avocado addiction these days, she did not seem as open as I had expected. Ele, she’s my best friend. She loves cats and wine (and beer at the end of the month). She is fun and smokes long thin whore cigarettes. Me too sometimes, but just because I mouch her. Once we kissed with the TONGUE. We were probably 22. Well, we are French. We kiss everybody and touch a lot people around us. It’s cultural: this is our way to empathize and get close.

Like the guy sitting next to me, in the subway. I think he wants to empathize with me. My hand will soon empathize with his face. Or my foot with his balls, depending on if I decide to stand up. He tells me that his girlfriend is in Sweden for her internship, and he’s kinda free and open. Love won’t restrict his liberty. I totally know his whole life after 14 minutes. That’s the effect I have on people when they sit next to me in the subway, or on a terrasse with my sunglasses and my ristretto. Can’t make up why. It’s a super power I guess.

Putain the poles are so greasy I can see digital prints with my bare eyes without squinting behind my sunglasses.” And they are super dark, like, you know, the ones you wear when you have a ophthalmic migraine after days of drinking alcohol and you’re not completely sure the world will ever stop moving as if you were on a drunken boat piloted by a blind rhumized captain. He’s probably even high on something. The captain. I feel like 22, but I am not anymore. I am RESPONSIBLE. Luckily, Babylove is safe and sound tyrannizing his grand-mother in Germany.

If I were a forensic, I would take the fingerprints on the poles and then, I would sue all these disgusting people who “forgot” to take a shower this morning before leaving to work. I even took one. It wasn’t easy to extract myself from the couch of the AirBnb guy – super nice and tolerant by the way, thank you Jerem, if you ever read this – to carry my body to the bathroom. But I did it. I even felt human again. Then I had my last exam and it was applied statistics. Had to put my brain on robot mode. I think I even did something good. But then, I often think I do good (I am a little arrogant and self complaisant).

Beards are not so cool. Okay, it does look good on some. But finally, if you shave some of them guys, and cut their greasy man bun, what is left?” You need to know that in Paris, for the past x years, it’s all hipster shit everywhere. Even my friends fell into the well. Mado, the merriest girl I have ever met in my life, said to Greg, the hipsterest guy I have close to me: “But you know, a study showed that beard are as clean as a toilet bowl?” They aren’t best friends. I laughed and I thought of Greg’s girlfriend doing what girlfriends do. And I felt a bit dizzy. So I turned my thoughts to the mini feta cheese balls on the table. It goes very well with olive oil and cherry tomatoes.

Oh Jess stop! You’re hungry again.

The subway stops for awhile. It’s not my station. It stops for a forever minute…which feels like a whole forever hour. Forever. That’s so damn long. You have the time to thin weird things. And the guy with the girlfriend in Sweden is going on and on. Now he’s telling me that he hesitates between love at first sight and love that you build. He did build something solid with his girlfriend, but sometimes, in a stroke, in a subway, you meet someone and it’s BAM. Bam? I take off my glasses and look into his eyes. Voila. He’s quiet now.

Fuck, I missed my stop.

Babylove is addicted to the screen. A bit like me in fact. So I decided to take up the problem from the roots: buy books.

Because after all these disgusting thoughts, you probably need a little rest of the mind.
These are children books for Babylove, it’s important for me that he keeps touch with French imaginary.

The disgusting thoughts I have in the subway – Part I

I am now back to France to go through an exam period for my BSc in Psychology. Yeah I know, I am SO GOOD: mother, Business Developer for a start-up, lover, and the future savior of all my friends with psychosis and neurosis. I am even EXTRA GOOD.

But for one little bone: I could not make it to Reims (you know the city, capital of Champagne, where they sell REAL champagne). Like now, I am writing stuff on my public diary instead of writing my exam in Psychopathology. Which I would have totally rocked. I had already lots of ideas to share on how to treat this and that – mainly drunken ideas which came this weekend I spent with my Parisian friends…bastards… observing their weird behaviors. Oh and I am sure I would have rocked the one of Inter-group relationships too. Because I am that good, and because I have observed my own behavior adapting to my friends’s.

Well, that’s okay. I’ll pass the exams of the rest of the week and pray the stars and bet on my luck to be allowed to pass in spite of everything. Because I am good, but stars and luck are good…er.

I won’t tell you what happened because I am ashamed and that’s not a public diary of ashameness. If I had an Instagram, I would NEVER put on the pictures of the dirty five year old sweat pants I could wear on Sundays. Because I don’t. I only wear totally wearable and fashionable stuff. Even on Sundays. What, you don’t believe me? Well… that’s not even what I was talking about. I mean Instagram. Though I will probably write something about it anytime soon.

Because I just got a smartphone. Yeah, me. Horrible.

It’s all the fault of the smartphone.

Societies are getting worse because of it. And then we have odd thoughts in the subway. You don’t follow me?

Look, since the smartphone and Instagram, I see people around me feeling guilty because their homes and gardens ain’t white and grey (like mine could be posted on the page 102 of Better Homes & Gardens, if there was one), and they did not use their gym card since they took one two years ago (and that they continue to pay, but that’s their own fucking choice, no?). And, sorry, but those wonder wanderers surfing huge waves and punching with their bare hands HUGE sharks and then they go rollerblading to their awesome offices… hm, okay. Also, we aren’t all fucking Jamie Olliver. Well, I could be, but I feel I am slightly better looking. Which engages only me, of course. Especially if you know that I am now eating the fourth croissant of the breakfast (AND IT IS NOT FUCKING BREAKFAST TIME BUT 3 PM). So those people I see, they think: “Fuck, what did I do with my life? I am alone drinking my 9 EUR bitter beer (it’s Paris here, no kidding with the price) sitting view on the subway and the cigarette butts left dying on the sidewalk by anonymous assholes.”

This shit makes me sick. And gives me ideas too. I am soon on Instagram, I m telling you...

That’s absolutely NOT my living room. Hell, the day you see me willingly hammering fucking pigeons on my wall, kill me.
Though I totally respect people’s choice to decorate their place with flying rats.
Photo credits: Shinoshi

But how do the Instagramers do? Is it me? How is it that I can’t fucking do glamorous whatever in my 24 hour day, too?

Well, first I don’t have an account. Then, my ego. Taking a one hour posing with multiple shots and maximal contrast plus monanegra filter wefie / selfie is not something I want to put on my ego booster list. Because I am different, of course. Also, I have a child. And, hm, I am too lazy. I have friends to do it for me.

But then, I thought the same about the smartphone. I fought well, I swear. None of my distant friends could bring me to buy one arguing that Whatsapp and / or Viber would SO MUCH bring us together no matter the distance in the world between us. Guys, I wrote you postcards I made my fucking self. None of my bosses could pressure me enough with their BYOD policies allowing money back only on super secured Blackberries my ass on the moon. My little Samsung could have NEVER been cracked or pirated. It could not go on the Internets. I fought well and long and bravely. Never ashamed, always proud. I was accepted as an oddity of my generation, and I felt awesome. And my phone died. Out. And left me alone in this cold world tyrannized by the smart people.

I went to a store. To another. And another. And then Babylove got hungry. And Love too. So I had to decide between

  1. the devilish device
  2. flying to Europe without being able to reach anyone and taking the chance to die alone in the sea dehydrated in the water if my flight had crashed… okay, this is going too far, but you get the idea

And against my free will and my high principles, because of hunger and curiosity, and because my old phone had left me… well, I bought a smartphone.

Now I am like everybody else and I feel my pride and my ego shivering away, slowly melting down under the heat of my curiosity for all things social and white & grey homes and gardens.

Horrible.

Oops, I forgot to tell you about the disgusting thoughts I have in the subway in Paris. And why it’s all because of the smartphone. Can do the latter, though.

Because my friends aren’t so good, they never reply to my postcards (did I precise that I draw or photograph them myself? How bad a friend can you be to think that a chat app is better than that?!). So almost nobody RSVPed to my welcome back to Paris Jess party (only the best did). But then with this newly bought smartphone, I got a newly installed Whatsapp. Many came out of curiosity to see me drowning my shame in alcohol… And we danced. And we cried. And we laughed. And had a really really really good time. From Friday to this morning. More or less.

This is me. Jess.

Smokes, alcohol and cheese ain’t the answer. Unless you ask me what I did this weekend.

“Stories only happen to people who can tell them”

– Allan Gurganus

Here is a thought. This guy is damn right, by the way.

As it happens, my mouth is dry and my fingers too. For a few days already. Not that nothing happens. I just can’t tell my stories, because I don’t find the angle that makes me laugh. Or think.

That’s what I want my ideal reader to feel when passing by randomly on this public diary. I want you to feel laughing or thinking.

Usually I would tell you about my yesterday running in the sudden monsoon near my house on the way to buy some Chili O’Crab, and everybody started to stare, and I started to frown, until I remembered that my wet top newly was white. The good thing is that, well, I can keep my composure quite well. Even when mortified inside. The other good thing is that as I was already running, it did not look like fleeing when I started to sprint back home. No. No no.

See, stuff happens. Small things, big things. But then, I just don’t feel telling. Today.

I am drowning in work, cheating on Babylove with my job, not unwillingly I must say as I really like what I do. Also, Love cheats on both of us with his own job.

This is the Singapore fever.

That’s okay though. For if I can’t tell, I can still draw. And this is something Babylove and I share. And the curls.

Sometimes I wonder if genetics is what matters. I can't see too much of my genes in this child, but definitely loads of my worst behaviors... that somehow makes me even prouder. Though I may have nothing to do with it.

We went to the hairdresser. Babylove refused to let his curls get shortened.
The hairdresser won anyway.

“Get cape. Wear cape. Fly.” – ain’t I already a Superhero?

Wait a minit? Have I been lied at all my life already?

Okay okay, so if I had an alter-ego who is a Superhero “for real”, here is what she would do during her day:

1. Wake up and go swimming when the night is still upon her loved ones but she knows that the young day is coming. Every day. Everywhere.

Before, I would have said “running” but because of the weather in Singapore, the natural laziness of this particular Superhero (it’s an alter ego, eh), I expect that she’s better off having a daily swim the rooftop pool waters. Plus, did I mention that it’s like practicing flying – true story: gravity stuff and such. Follow me?

So she swims, then she goes back home and lovingly stares at her loved ones. Then she puts on music and starts dancing because it’s fun and it shakes away the potential rest of sleepiness. And it annoys her partner in non-crime. And that’s fun too. I assume that my Superhero has a little taste for controversy and can be sometimes cheeky.

Also, they all have breakfast together and once the others have left, she goes to put on her magical costume. And her cape. Very important. My Superhero can fly. Who wants a Superhero who cannot, seriously?

2. Patrol the place where she lives (depending on her mood and the day and the opportunity, the place can be the city, the few countries around, or the WORLD. Yep, absolutely) to find where she’s the most needed. And fly there to rescue people.

I believe that most of the time, she’s rescuing people from themselves.

You may not have already noticed it, but danger comes from within. It’s easy to blame and point fingers, to contemplate the details of what’s not working. And complain. And that’s okay, that’s human. That’s why we have Superheros and Antiheros. The latter are there to be blamed, and the former to rescue. Without judging. Although we finally all come to know: that danger comes from within.

Helping people to realize it, to step back a bit, to get a big picture and heal the system – that’s what my Superhero does most of the day.

3. Go home and watch series while cooking and checking new places to visit with her family.

At the end of the day, she needs some time for herself of course.

So she streams stuff, she reads news, she cooks a bit (not that she does not want, but Singapore has plenty of different foods to discover everyday and the whole family loves it. And she’s lazy too, remember?), she paints a lot.

She plans the next days, readjusting with what happened during the day.

4. Share with Superhero-partner and go for dinner. Foods and news and love often come together in her family. And stomachache too, when they go Indian. But that’s okay.

Also sometimes, she has a beer with Partner. Or a glass of wine – but that does not happen so often because it’s SO expensive here. And served in plastic glass, no kidding. I SWEAR. Last time, with some friends, I went to the Lantern, rooftop of Fullerton Hotel. And the wine was 25 SGD… served in a PLASTIC glass. Shocking.

Okay, not really her Superhero problem. Still. They would have deserved a red laser beam shot.

5. Read a book or listen to music in the bed.

After having had a swim with the little one and brought him to bed. He needs to practice flying too. It’s important.

I have a cape, it's red. Am I a superhero?

Because I wouldn’t be me if after free writing for 11 minutes I hadn’t a picture worked on for as long.
And because random images are nice to look upon for our delicate brains.

————-

No of words: 579 – 11 minutes

Free Writing CHALLENGE

Irene challenged me and I accepted.

The challenge is a incentive amongst bloggers to promote and stimulate free writing, helping each other out with a prompt. These are the rules:

Open an MS Word document (or Pages)

1. Set a stop watch or your mobile to 5 minutes or 10 minutes whichever challenge you think you can beat.

2. Your topic is at the foot of this post.

3. Fill the word doc with as many words as you want. Once you began writing do not stop.

4. Do not cheat by going back and correcting spellings and grammar with spell check in MS WORD (it is only meant for you to reflect on your own control of sensible thought flow and for you to reflect on your ability to write the right spelling and stick to grammar rules)

5. You may or may not pay attention to punctuation and capitals. However, if you do, it would be best.

6. At the end of your post write down ‘No. Of words =_____’ so that we would have an idea of how much you can write within the time frame.

7. Do not forget to copy paste the entire passage on your blog post with a new Topic for your nominees and copy paste these rules with your nominations (at least 5 bloggers).

And the nominees are…

  1. Note pour moi-meme
  2. The middlest sister
  3. Jhaneel
  4. Girl in the Hat
  5. Brittany

Your topic is…

Hm… what about your first toddler memories. Or let’s say, what you believe to be your first memories.

🙂

“You smell French”

No kidding. This is really what a prospect told me last time.

I asked him if it was positive and he said: “Yes, I think so.”

Since then I have been on a quest: I have smelled as many French people as I could in Singapore. Believe me, sometimes it gets awkward and my explanations ain’t so convincing. But it’s all on behalf of science – or personal curiosity, which is more or less the same when you think about it.

I have no conclusion to give. Yet. I am not sure what we French smell in particular and if it’s so different from what others’ scent. Of course, due to what we eat, there are people that you can definitely assign to a culture or another. For example, the spices in the air of Little India are all around and with the looks of the buildings and the saris of the ladies, this part of Singapore seems to be in its own space and time. Magical.

However I am not quite sure about what French people eat that would make them so recognizable for the nose… but why not? It is vain (here again, I am being vain. Seriously…) but nice to think that you are part of something small, recognizable and positively different. Also, carrying a bit of your home culture even after so long abroad – and in spite of not recognizing yourself in the culture sometimes…

“You smell French” was a odd and funny thing to say. He probably thought me tired of hearing that I sound French (and I swear I work hard on my accent because it is so annoying to repeat every word containing the sounds h or i and i:). And he tried to find something new. Well that worked.

“You smell French”
“Is that so? Is it positive?”
“Yes… yes, I think so. I am Polish you know… I have lived six years in France – in Bordeaux.”
“Ah. I am from…”
“Yeah Paris, of course. I see that.”
“Is that so? Is it good?”
“Neutral. You make me go back to France. I love France.”
“So… you’ll give me money?”

I guess I look French. I smell Hot Couture or Cartier sometimes. Or cinnamon....

A little vanity never killed nobody…

…or so I hope.

A horrible thing is happening to me in Singapore: I am discovering yet another true myself. A vain myself. And a little arrogant too. Probably it came together in a package, along with the clothes I bought online.

But truth be told, I should come clear: I was already a little of both before. I have always liked fashion and looking at what people wear in the world. And I have also always appreciated that people appreciate the way I wear my clothes – you know, two people can wear the same outfit and give a total different impression. It’s the attitude. You wear it even naked.

In Singapore, when I look around, I see ladies and gents wearing kind of different outfits, but all looking alike. Somehow. Especially in Tanjong Pagar and Raffles Place. Or anywhere for that matters. I do not believe that it has to do with the fact that I lost my glasses (again) – though it could be, why not…

Serina Wee wearing corpo rats outfit like most people in SG

Credits: Serina Wee on SingaporeSeen

But then, on my I am bored to work and I don’t want to mother right now time, I googled stuff like “Singapore fashion at work – why do they all look the same in their fancy expensive clothes??”. A funny article about how to attract Singaporean men came up. More or less. And it opened my eyes (you should see me opening my eyes now, seriously.)
Indeed, with all the time they spend at work (really crazy IMHO – but who am I to judge?), ladies and gents alike must optimize what’s left and use office time. Sometimes in the MRT or the bus, I look at people’s smartphone screens. Have a guess what I see most of the time.

Dating apps or websites.

(And games, or kung-fu movies, but that’s not the point of my post. Though I could tell you about that time I was watching so intensely above the shoulder of my seat neighbor that he gave me one of his earphone. I almost blushed. Now we are Facebook friends. He’s very nice and a bit shy.)

Anyway… where was I?
Dating and clothing and why everybody looks the same even wearing sorta different stuff. Well, sorta. That’s the trick. And also, the attitude. Hm… I forgot the point of my hypothesis. I think I forgot why I wanted to write this post at the first place.
Ah yes, my vanity.
My boss asked me gently to look more “Singaporean professional” (and less “European whatever”, though he did not say it, I felt strongly what was in his head). So I observed for a while the Singaporean professional way and contemplated the idea of going into that.
Then I realized that I certainly did not have the money for it. Nor the taste, but my boss does not care.

However:
1. I bought online for the first time
2. Stuff being a compromised between Singaporean professional and my personal taste

I received the clothes this morning – and don’t get me started on what happened with the POP Station not working and the lady on the phone shaming my non Singaporean convenientness because I don’t have a smartphone and I would have been able to open this locker with one… okay breathe in breathe out.

I really loved it – most of it. Now I feel like belonging to a special tribe: I will even return some clothes as if it was normal not to know your own size.

And I thought: “Hm, well, even with Singaporean corporate rat outfit, I look different.”

I really loved it too.

Vanity & me: good that it does not kill, or else I'd be dead now.