The glorious and triumphant return of now-19 year old Blogger, the revival of a once-grand and dare I say influential webspace that produced daily content, and the crippling anxiety of a young woman who no longer has any time or motivation to write, and feels like any ability she had acquired in the past through repetition and sheer will alone is now slowly slipping out of her grasp. Brief history of the Blog and Blogger can be found here.

Here be personal journal entries, observations, slices of life, questions and conclusions, as well as exploration of social and political topics seen through the lens of a Malaysian Muslim, feminist, lesbian, Marxist, and horse enthusiast.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Pabst Blue Ribbon On Ice

I've been sitting in front of the computer, horror-stricken, frozen in place, and unable to do anything other than mutter, "Oh, God, I'm going to fucking puke," every few minutes because seriously, my stomach's contents are probably up to my chest right now, my hands are shaking and it's just not a very good time to get a rush of adrenalin pumping through my body, considering it's 6 am. I wish I had spent the night at Hanna's so maybe I wouldn't have to be alone while I'm experiencing this mental breakdown. Or maybe I should just learn to compartmentalize better. Like, for instance, when looking through the blog of this one guy who went to INTEC and took ADFP a few years ago to get a feel for how my great big college adventure is going to pan out, maybe I shouldn't look at Twitter and see someone - my friend Cornelia - talking about how trashy anti sex positivity people are and how if they want to call her a pedophile, they should just go ahead because she'd rather not have those people in her life anyways. Of course I got nauseous and felt like puking up the dinner I had fourteen hours ago. I was thinking about how if I can't even stand up to her - on Twitter, where I can delete my Tweets any time and basically plagiarize someone's disparaging essay on sex positivity - how can I do it, like, in real life? At college? Full of tall people? Who are all probably smarter than I am (okay, this is far-fetched - but they could be more articulate and I could trip on my words seventy times or resort to the totally unnecessary and detrimental verbal crutches like my 'likes' and 'ums')?

I can't. That's what's going to happen. I'm going to be, like, at a women's group meeting or something and someone's going to suggest we take our tops off or donate money to an organization that supports pederasty, and I'm just going to be, like, um, okay, whatever you guys say, you're all taller and more articulate than I am anyways.

I'm going to college. College. C O L L E G E. And what's going on right now, where I have to learn to drive within three weeks and then ferry myself back and forth from college daily, where I'm supposed to make friends and join clubs and have fun all while getting good grades and acing all the tests in order to get a government sponsored scholarship so I can go to the US, is no big fucking deal. I have embarrassed myself countless times. I'm that girl who said, really loudly might I add (like, really loudly - I need to work on my indoor voice), "Where's the guy who said he'd get me any sized t-shirt I want?" at Uniqlo, and the guy who worked there (who did a few minutes before promised me that he would get me any size I want from the top shelves - which I couldn't reach - but he'd disappeared when I took my eyes off him) couldn't stop laughing for, like, ten minutes (none of my friends could either). I'm that girl who bought a really tiny Frozen sippy cup thing, which I'm sure is for children (but I didn't realize this until way later - you would have thought the size would have tipped me off), at Juice Boost, and all the workers there looked at me like I was crazy, because I'm sure the only people who have paid money for that thing before me was probably a haggard-looking mother of three who's middle child saw the cute snowman on one of the sippy cups and wouldn't stop screaming their head off crying unless the mother bought it for them. I'm that girl who went into Dome with her best friend and belatedly realized after sitting down and perusing the menu that a) all of the things on the menu were expensive as shit and we didn't have money to pay for a $20 bowl of soup and pay for a cab ride home, and b) we weren't even that hungry, anyways, because our juice from Juice Boost was dinner enough and looking at menus that advertise something you can make yourself at home like eggs on toast for $20 per plate did nothing for our appetite. After which, we had to make a discreet exit, but the waiter/server/host (for a cafe that's not exactly cheap, they have a staff shortage and every worker's just sort of doing all these jobs at once) in his Santa hat still gave us a quizzical look. Two of those things happened today. I am that girl.

Considering that I've embarrassed myself that many times (and so many times in a single day, too), college here should be a breeze. I mean, it's not exactly school, where if something were to happen, I could definitely just call up my parents and ask them to sort things out for me. If something were to happen at INTEC, I'd probably have to get in my car and drive myself around somewhere and sort out my own things. And I don't want to do that. Yeah. I don't want to get out of my room or even my bed and I definitely don't want to talk to people and meet new friends. Those are the last and final things on the list of Things I Want To Do. But at least Malaysians are my size. Well they don't look like a twelve year old blow-up doll you can buy on Japanese sex-toy websites, but still. They're not that tall. And the tall thing does intimidate me, when I think about going to the US.

Mostly I'm just scared because it's a whole other country, and not just some random country. It's The Country. The Worst Country in the whole wide world. As of now, that is. But countries as we know it didn't really exist back before Europe threw up all over the world map and went power crazy. It's like entering the lion's den, you know? Like, who knows what kind of crazy people I'll meet there. People like Cornelia (I think she's Polish but whatever. That's European and God knows they're crazy, too - look at FEMEN) perhaps, who I don't even have the courage to face online. How am I supposed to face the crazy people who go out and riot in the streets with their tops off and tote their children around, carrying signs like, "It's My Body, I'll Do What I Want"? Again, because it bears repeating, I'm going to go with: I can't. I just can't do that.

Well, right now. I can't right now. And to be fair, it's 6 am and I haven't gotten a wink of sleep last night on account of the fact that I finished the last book in The Princess Diaries series (which I'm going to review, don't worry). And I am also simultaneously having a semi mental breakdown over college and the fact that, well, it's great we're going to have air-conditioned rooms and all but what if nobody likes me. That's worse than bombing the SATS. Well, of course, it's not worse than doing so bad I won't even get into a college, much less get offered a scholarship. But it would be doubly bad if I wasn't accepted into any colleges and I didn't made any friends for the entire year. The latter of which, of course, sounds less impossible by the day. Maybe by the end of next year, I'll be so good at making new friends, I'd be one of those people who go to parties or raves every night. Maybe by 2014 (or at least the end of it) normal, level-headed (and radical oops) feminism would be in vogue, and I'll be hailed as the new 'It' girl as opposed to being a kink shaming, party pooping, stick in the mud.

I talk a lot for someone who claims not to have any feelings. 

Anyways, I guess I opened this New Post page so I could write about how I went out with Nisa on Sunday, instead of spilling what looks like over a thousand words on my college anxieties. Despite a week of being well-rested (unless you count Hanna sleeping over on Tuesday, or going out with her on Wednesday, and the entirety of Friday, which was like one big party thanks to my Secret Santa idea), I was still sick by then (so that made it official: I had been sick for one whole week. But just in case we thought the worst had subsided or anything, it's Wednesday now. And I'm still coughing up a lung. But this is entirely my fault, I know, for getting a juice at Juice Boost yesterday in the first place). What made matters worse was I only had a pretzel for breakfast, and the only other meal I had that day before night time was, like, a quarter of the yee mee I got from the food court (I don't know why I keep ordering those things -  I cant never finish even half of them). All this was because I had woken up late (at 11), as opposed to when I was supposed to wake up (9 or something) so I had time to read whatever book of Princess Diaries I was on at that time, and also because my parents and I were supposed to go out and look at used cars. For me. To buy me a car.

And, yeah, I got a car. Like, they bought me a car. It's a 13 year old car, and I haven't gotten it yet due to the arduous process of second-hand-car-buying, where you have to get new insurance and switch the owner of the car's name from whoever-it-was to my dad's (it's not going to be under my name because I might only be using it for a year - which is also why I'm not even batting an eye at the fact that someone had used this car for 13 years before I will). It's a huge deal, this whole car thing, and I still don't know what to name it (the car). I probably won't get it until next week and even then, my dad still has to fix the engine or something (God, can you imagine if I ended up marrying - or shacking up with, as the case may be - with someone who knew nothing about cars and its mechanics? We might have to rely on actual mechanics at autoshops, and my dad always goes on about how they're untrustworthy and only want to wring you dry of cash). The whole day, I wouldn't stop bugging Nisa about the fact that, whoah, yes, I was in fact the owner of a car (not yet and not ever, probably, but without all the technicalities factored in, I totally own that car, whatever its name is going to be). I can't drive - yes, I have a driver's license but my hand feels like falling off whenever I put it on the gear and my heart's in my mouth once I so much as turn on the engine, so I don't consider any of this to be technically spectacular driving skills, or good driving skills even - but I own a car. I-own-it-ish. 

The whole thing with Nisa, though. I know I was, like, her fifth choice. She asked Cynta, and Nurin and Intan and probably Damia, before she asked me, but like she said in her message, we had only started talking a few days ago. I don't really care. Things like this don't bother me much. Maybe it's because of that time in Year 6 when Afreena, Raihan and Nisa had a two-night sleepover and only invited me on the second night and nobody but Afreena would admit to it, they tried to keep it a secret and I probably wouldn't have suspected a thing if the first thing Raihan's maid had said to me wasn't, "Why are you only coming over now? The other two have been here since yesterday." Maybe it's because of that. Like, I'm just not touchy about things like this. Given a chance between going out with people and staying in? I'd choose the latter. In fact, almost all of the time, I'll have my fingers pressed over the send button to an apologetic text of cancellation before telling myself I've got to suck it up and hang out with my friends because that's what normal people are expected to do: go out and hang out with friends. Which isn't that big of a deal to other people, I guess, not when you go to school. But when you haven't had proper interaction with a large, mostly stupid group of people in 18 months, it becomes more of an issue.

So we had lunch at first. Well, Nisa had lunch, I barely touched mine (I spend so wisely). I guess you can say it was awkward at first because - everyone should know this and it should seriously be tattooed on me somewhere like a fine print - I rarely make the first move in conversations I'm not comfortable with, or in conversations with people I'm not (or have yet to be) comfortable with. Maybe Nisa knows this. So she talked a lot at first and then I talked and it wasn't much of an issue. I think we talk less than we did back before I blew up at her and she acted like a five year old jerk, but I think that's par for the course. And we laughed a lot, too, particularly about Megat, who kept trying to engage Nisa in conversation on Twitter. I tried to tell Hanna about the stuff that Megat said, but I barely got a giggle out of her, so it's cool that Nisa and I can still laugh about stuff that's just, like, mutually ours, I guess. Well, I'm not guessing, because it is cool. I try not to think about what a shit friend she was to me back then, because she did apologize, and plus, I don't want to be confronted with the fact that, yeah, I probably had my bad days when it came to our friendship as well. So we'll just let all of that go. Water under the bridge and all of that.

I shouldn't have left so abruptly at the end (I didn't even say goodbye!) but I was freaking out because my brother was supposed to pick me up and I know he can't get mad at me (well, I don't think he has the right to anyway, but he probably would have gotten snarky) like my parents would if I had shown up late to where they had told me they were picking me up, but I just didn't want to burden him with having to go around the block twice in case I wasn't there on time, considering he went to all the trouble to pick me up in the first place. Look at what a conscientious person I am! Well, maybe not to Nisa, but what does that matter, I was her fifth choice of companion anyway.

On Monday, I didn't do much. I guess I just read. Even though I wanted a complete separation from Twitter this week, that didn't work as well as I had planned (well, obviously - given the whole Cornelia thing). It's just that if I had to quit Twitter just on the computer, that's fine. That's doable, I guess. But then you open your laptop and there's also a Twitter app there, all signed in. Ditto iPod. And my mom's phone and her tab and her laptop, all of which I regularly use. It sucks to have to do all this heavy thinking (not about The Princess Diaries - God, no. I meant about college, because that's all Hanna and I talked about today) and also open up a new Twitter tab and see all the stupid stuff people write when they fancy themselves smart. I fancy myself smart and actually end up looking like a fool all the time (like that time on Sunday, at the used car place, when I handed over my IC to the saleslady person and she went, all cheerfully, "Oh, '96? You just learned to drive then! My daughter will be able to drive next year," and I just went all sagely, nodding my head, "Ah. She's '95." See? These are the kinds of things I say. I am a walking embarrassment. So whatever's going to happen next year at college, it won't even be a blip on my radar) but I'd like to think that there is a truth out there, one that God wants us to work tirelessly in search for, and that kinks like rape and pedophile fantasies are wrong on account of how fantasies are things that happen in your head and reflect your thoughts and just because they make your genitals tingle doesn't mean they're not disgusting or that you don't need therapy, well, that sounds pretty close to the truth, if you asked me.

Hanna took her computerized law test today, which she had to pass in order to get her L license. She got full marks and barely studied! I was... well, shocked, yes, because the way the guy in my seminar talked about it, it seemed like barely anyone except weirdos who have the guidebook glued to their face got full marks on the test. I could make up a bunch of excuses like I didn't study until 11 pm the night before, and I studied, instead of looking at questions and drilling them into my head like Hanna did, or that I took the BM test and I barely understand that language, and she took hers in English, but that doesn't change the fact that I'm jealous she got full marks. But it doesn't matter anyway, because all she gets is bragging rights. And, of course, I'm happy for her too. I wouldn't have wanted her to fail or have to sit for the test over and over and over again like Intan. I barely passed the thing and I'm okay, so her getting like 5 more marks than I did is not even a surprise or whatever. I'm jealous, but I'm happy. These feelings can coexist. Thank God I've learned how to manage that much, at least.

So we went out to Midvalley just now, at around 4. We barely stayed for two hours though. Most of the shenanigans we got up to, I already mentioned up there while I was enumerating the many, many humiliations I've subjected myself to just this week alone (the Uniqlo thing happened at Sunway when I went out with Sya, Marissa and Roo). Hanna just wanted to get some expensive stuff for her face and I... I wanted pretzels. And candy canes. I've been working my way through my box of 40 mini peppermint candy canes but I think I had too much and my tongue's all sore and itchy now. 

Hanna dropped a huge bomb. Well, so did Nisa. How could I have forgotten about Nisa? Well, doesn't matter, I can just combine this all into one simple sentence: they're both planning on going to MCKL. Hanna wants to do AUSMAT, which is more coursework oriented than A-Levels (besides, all the people who take A-Levels are crazy, like I'm sure that's what Violet and Santra are signing up for). Nisa, A-Levels (she's crazy, nobody ever said otherwise). Here's the kicker: Hanna's not going to pursue a degree in fashion journalism anymore. Apparently (over the course of, like, a day) she had lost all her childlike naivety because she had a dream that she got pregnant or something and now she wants to do something more practical and less restrictive: general journalism. And Nisa? Nisa doesn't want to be an architect anymore. No. She's apparently only now taking into account that a huge majority of architecture majors drop out, and she's gunning for a major in Maths and Economics. Maths and Economics. So basically, nobody is doing what they said they were doing and they just decided all this, like, within a week. A day, practically. I think all my friends have lost their minds and I am mildly worried about them.

No, like, I am really, really concerned.

Maybe some of that concern is just jealousy because their parents would let them go to a school called Methodist College, and they don't have to start from scratch at a place where they know literally nobody, not a single breathing soul, and what's more, they'll have friends. Damia's going there as well, so Nisa's all set. Hanna has her Samad friends, who are all taking pretty much the same course as her. And then there's the fact that they're going to a Methodist College in Kuala Lumpur, where majority of students will be, I'm sure, not people who had previously gone to boarding schools and are receiving grants and scholarships from the government and private organizations like those who will be going to my school. Not people who wear jubahs and hijabs and this is really racist (and presumptuous and elitist and classicist and all around, trashy) of me, but I don't care all that much. Where am I going to find someone to make out with if the only options I have next year will be nerd Chinese guys who probably got sponsored by Petronas or something and Malay guys who don't even speak the same language as I do? (I mean that quite literally. Nothing against people who don't speak English, but I think I would piss myself if we were making out and the guy just like moaned something in Bahasa). I am chucking lesbians entirely into the bin, of course. Where, among the sea of JPA and MARA scholarship students, am I going to find a lesbian? I'm even chucking the idea of telling everyone that I'm a lesbian into the bin, on account of how much I want to make out with someone. 

I mean, is it really just my luck that the people who offered themselves up to me on a silver platter this year just happened to be two people I have no interest in whatsoever, like, physically or romantically, and whom I happen to find, well, unattractive. Not as in ugly, but, like, I am not attracted to them nor do I want their saliva to come into contact with me at all, thanks. That's just unfair. I've had a bad year. I deserve someone to make out with. I deserve someone's tongue in my mouth and their hands under my shirt and touching my nipples and I am writing a sex scene right now, I'm pretty sure this is where it's heading, that's how... well, how frisky I am. 

Hanna, of course, had to listen to all this. Sometimes I think she's a much better friend to me than I am to her, but I don't think about this much because of the fact that she is annoying sometimes. Like that thing she does where she takes other peoples' ideas and pretends she came up with them herself (the collage idea for Divyia's birthday present last year, that Secret Santa thing she wants to have now that I and everyone else on the planet are getting in on it apparently, and that thing she did where she totally stole Nisa's daughter's name, for God's sake). Also, I can't do much about helping her through her breakup because I know she's got way better people to comfort her (people who actually know what to say) and I'm just not one of those people, and that's fine by me because every time she gets serious and starts talking about missing him and leaves these long blank pauses where I guess she expects me to say something comforting, I kind of feel like laughing. But laughing is the only thing I know how to do. Hanna and I laughed a lot today.

I don't know what we were talking about. Well, yeah, I do. I told her I wanted to make out with someone really bad (I repeated this a lot, actually, so I guess I shouldn't complain too much when Hanna does that, too, like when she wouldn't shut up about how Frozen was the cutest thing she's ever watched which like, yeah, but you don't have to mention it every hour on the hour. But I should let her. Mention it, I mean. Because I was talking about my sad lack of making out partner from the time we were in Topshop until I went home, I'm sure. That's a long time) and I wanted her to find me a guy who was like big and tall. Like a bear. Only not gay. And then she started talking about how some girl on Yahoo! Answers got an egg stuck up her vagina because she was masturbating with it, and during gym class while she was running and jumping around all over the place, well, let's just say she laid an egg.

I also told her, because I was studying her face intently while she was on her phone scrolling through Twitter or something, that I thought it's funny she has half eyebrows, just like she has half a heart, which is the One Direction song she's been wallowing to the whole week ever since the breakup. And luckily she didn't kick me out of her house. It was mean of me, though. Like, probably as mean as the fact that Hanna tells me all the time that I have bad socializing skills (or, like, none) and that this will probably be a huge obstacle I'll have to overcome during my years in college. Or in my quest to find people to make out with. Only, unlike her, I don't go, "That's so offensive and it hurts my feelings," like I guess normal people should. I could be like, "Hey, can we not talk about this because I had to go to therapy and drop out of school because of this, remember?" but no. I just play along or rebut her really sarcastically. So I don't think anyone knows this is, like, my Achilles' heel, and I don't care, really. I don't want to mess up my reputation as that girl who doesn't have any feelings. So from my end, it sounds totally fair, but I'm sure Hanna thinks I crossed some line with the eyebrow comment or something. Her other friends who know all the right words of succor that will help her to learn to eventually love again probably don't comment on her eyebrows. Or spend hours talking about how frustrated they are that they haven't had anyone's tongue down their throat in ages. People really drew the short end of the stick when they got me for a friend, right?

It's nice. Sitting around giggling with Hanna over things I certainly would never thought I'd be talking to someone about. Like, masturbating with an egg? Sure. But confessing my desires to make out with someone, preferably as soon as humanly possible would have been a little out of left field for me a few years back. Just, you know when you read or overhear conversations, and you're like, wow, people can't be that stupid. But then most of the conversations I had with Hanna today were stupid. And maybe that's what we needed, considering there's this big weight on everyone's chest, with our hearts beating an unsteady drum of coll-ege coll-ege coll-ege. And tonight (or this morning), I was just in my bed, reading Forever Princess at 4 am, as one does, and I was shoving chocolate chip cookies in my mouth, mouthing along to the sentences and sobbing whenever Mia or Lilly or Mia's parents gave a particularly touching and unrealistically long speech, I was like, this is so Girly of me.

And sometimes I want to be a Girl. Just, like, away from it all, from thinking and evaluating and being critical. I want to be a Girl like Mia is a Girl. I want to have Girl Talks all the time like Hanna and I had, except maybe less talking about college and more talking about boys and makeup and clothes or whatever. And I would greatly appreciate the magical ability to make a friend feel good about herself after a breakup, or at least know what a normal person would say if they were in my shoes. I know right? What have I been smoking, what exactly are the ingredients of the cough syrup my dad bought for me the other day, has my anxiety over college finally erupted in a total lost of my brain cells and feminist morals? I know. But sometimes I want to be apathetic, instead of whatever this is. This in-between where I know what Cornelia is saying is wrong, but I just don't know how to say it, and because of this I'm stuck beating myself up for not knowing how to articulate something I've read probably just about a hundred times and wishing that I could just be... apathetic. Like if someone says sex positivity, and I could just go, "What's that?" or if someone asks me whether I'm pro-life or pro-choice and I can just shrug and say I'm still ambivalent about it. Someone who believes in Boys and Girls and can have Girl talks with their Girl friends and have Boys suck on their tongue without worrying if he watches porn and contributes to a society that normalizes and highly encourages sexual violence and the objectification and degradation of women.

Of course, that's not right. That's not striving for the truth because it goes nowhere near the truth. It just sort of skirts around the truth and ignores it. It would suck if I were to be that someone. It's better to think too much or be too critical and a 'killjoy' than it is to be desensitized. Because I'm sure people whose houses are getting decimated by drones aren't accorded the luxury of being desensitized. Like, you're not really being a killjoy, if what you're doing is actually pointing out to people that their smiles and Girl talks and reading YA fluff novels at 4 am while eating cookies are all just veneers that help you forget momentarily - or if carried out long enough with consistent frequency, they become veneers that shield you totally from what's actually going on in the world, to people less fortunate, to those who are oppressed, poverty-stricken, unable to feed themselves or have worked themselves to the bone for a wage that's not even being regulated and is barely enough to support their families. I'm in my air-conditioned room with a book that I bought. Eating cookies that cost a fortune per 100g. I have three lamps, remember? Three lamps I bought with money, only one of which is functioning and I don't even use that.

I don't think this is supposed to be fun. And I don't think life is supposed to be, as a whole, fun. Sure, you've got all those nice warm moments with your friends, which for me lasts about as long as it takes for them to do or say another thing that pisses me off. The whole having people around you who love you and are willing to sacrifice things for you - that's nice. I'm grateful. Although a lot of factors have conspired to ensure I do not know even the first thing about expressing gratitude like a normal, emotionally-adjusted person would. But all of that, just knowing all of the good things I've got going for me. The knowing is pretty nice because it's a safety net that's supposed to catch me when I fall. But that can't be my life all the time. If it's all about me, and the people who make me feel good, instead of others out there who don't have the same privileges I do. And, yeah, this is Tumblr Social Justice 101, and I sound like I'm speaking to a child, but I don't know how old this blog is since I've stopped writing in it and caring about it. I'm sorry, I meant, you. Since I stopped caring about you. So I'll speak like I'm talking to child if I want to. I'll talk about privilege, because divorced from its convoluted Tumblr context, it's actually an important thing to always keep in mind. I'm pretty sure that's what God wants from his followers: a community that is going to support each other and champions equality, above all else. Well, okay, maybe not above devotion to God. But the whole point of other people not being able to read our minds is that only God can, so only He knows what's going on in it and whether the millions of dollars you're donating to charities are out of sincere philanthropy or just plain old vanity. So in that sense, it's not fun and it's not going to be fun. It's going to be work. And (I actually don't like this word very much, because my dad overuses it) struggle. And putting the needs of others above your own, because I already have an Asus Transformer and an iPod and a phone that I admittedly semi-destroyed and a desktop computer in my room and a lot of clothes. I think it's only fair that I think about what people say and do, and how their words affect me and others still, instead of hiding behind being a Girl and doing Girly things.

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