I kinda like musicals, I guess..?

As I typed on my laptop, getting work done in time for the long weekend, I told my supervisor that I’m going to watch a movie on my day-off.

“What are you watching? I don’t think there’s any movies worth watching at the moment,” she said.

I glanced at her, thinking if I should just say it. To her, movies that are worth watching are superhero movies. I finally said without looking at her, “I wanna see La La Land.”

“Oh La La Land. What’s it about?”

“It’s a musical, I guess.”

“I see…so you like musicals?”

I nodded. “Kinda, I guess.”

But in fact, I kinda do!

Well, if you don’t count High School Musical, I would say that it started circa 2011. At that time, I was a fan of AKB48 and I’m actually quite ashamed to say that out loud sometimes.

AKB48 is an all-female idol group from Japan that has a million members. I was really into it, the little fan wars were awesome when they had their annual elections. The year before that, they produced a musical called AKB Kagekidan Infinity which had quite a ridiculous plot line. Regardless of that, I was interested and watched it. All of it. All the main characters, even the male lead character was played by girls. Well, it got even more interesting because there were kissing scenes between the two lead character, both of which were girls. Yeah I know, I sound creepy.

After that, some fans started to make references to a real all-female theatrical group, called the Takarazuka Revue. To satisfy my curiosity, I looked them up and I saw that they were playing Romeo and Juliette. And it was probably the most attractive Romeo I’ve ever seen. Not that I’ve seen many, but you know.

Eventually, I started to watch any videos that I could find online. “Phantom” was probably the first that I saw and loved. They caught my attention but I had other things to do then. Besides, my Japanese comprehension was really poor. It wasn’t until 2015, on a boring weekend, that I decided to give Romeo & Juliette a try. I was hooked, it was like watching magic happen. I don’t know what it was, maybe it’s the androgynous appeal, the sparkles, the weirdness, that pulled me in. All I know was that I couldn’t look away.

Slowly, I started to watch more shows, buying their expensive DVDs, and magazines. I bought programme books of shows I haven’t seen. I feel like Takarazuka is turning me into a more cultured person (I think). Their productions are sometimes adapted from books, movies, classics, foreign musicals and even opera. It’s opening up a whole new world for me. Because when I know that a certain show is adapted from such-and-such book, I would read that book just to get a better understanding of the whole thing.

I can’t say I’m fully embracing the fact that I’m a musical fan because I still haven’t seen a lot of other musicals which that is not Takarazuka. At times I feel like I like Takarazuka’s adaptations of books/classics or their original production more than their adaptations of Western musicals.

So yes, I’m looking forward to seeing more things. Musicals, that is.

 

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My boss is a robot

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A real robot.

I’m being serious here. Is she even human? I’m not talking about her lack of emotion, because she can get emotional when she wants to. Or needs to, just to get what she wants.

Here’s why I say she’s a robot.

She comes to work early, she goes back very late.

Every single day! She comes in before most of us do. Usually, I can already hear the sound of her loud voice as she talks on the phone whenever I come to the office. I sit down and I sign-in to my computer. I pray hard that she wouldn’t call me and for her to just leave the office for her many meetings. Fast forward to end of the day. She comes back to the office after her back-to-back meetings. Sometimes, she would be back during lunch and leave again. After office hours is the only time she has to see her subordinates and for us to update her with anything. She would stay until 9-10 pm, before she leaves. Rinse and repeat. She even works on weekends.

Normal human beings need to rest. I bet she goes back and plug into a socket to recharge.

Okay, okay, so you may say that is how most bosses work. Here’s my second point.

I have never seen her eat.

As I said, she comes in early, then she goes out for meetings. She comes back during lunch hour and asks us to see her even though we haven’t had a bite to eat. We all were forced to work late, but I’ve never seen her eat any evening meals.

I was just talking about this with one of my team mates who have been with her way longer. She denied it and said she has seen the boss eating.I refuse to believe until I see it myself. Gosh, now I just sound like I’m paranoid.

She lacks empathy and is very persistent that everything goes her way or the highway.

One of my teammates had to work despite her daughter being sick. The boss doesn’t care about you or the fact that you have family.And when you are sick, you have to work because nobody is gonna be covering for you.

Whenever she talks to anyone, she has to be right. ALL. THE. TIME.

Then what is the point of asking other people’s opinion? I simply don’t get it. It’s like her algorithm is stuck in an infinite loop. Until she gets what she wants.To make it worse, she micromanages. Every little decision needs to go through her, she wants to know all the details.

Other than that, she is a selective listener. She only listens to what she wants to hear. She can’t understand if I give my input on certain matters if it doesn’t meet her expectations. She just couldn’t compute certain things. Only when I say, “Sure, I’ll do it right away”, that she understands me.

So there it is. My boss, the robot.

Stop making me feel bad – Running away from direct sales people

Stop making me feel bad!

Do you feel that way sometimes? After someone asks you for something and you have to turn them down. It’s not a good feeling. In fact, in my case it happens on a daily basis. Let me show you what I mean.

After a long, unpleasant day at work, I walked to the subway station. To get to the station, one has to pass through in front of a few stores in a shopping mall. As is the norm in Malaysia, sales agents are allowed to set-up promotion booths in the mall. And they would stand there, left and right, at the passage with the highest volume of human traffic.

“Hi. Do you have a moment, I would like to tell you about…”, the young man tried his best to say all that in a tenth of a millisecond. He was from Bank X, trying to sell credit cards with luggage bags as gifts.

I stopped him short by waving my hand and a sorry smile. He backed away.

Arriving at my station, more sales agents await me at the bottom of the stairs. This time it was Bank Y. I did not say anything, nor did I signaled that I’m not interested. And he followed me for a few feet, trying to convince me that I would want some free electrical appliances if I signed up. But I apologized and said that I’m not interested.

Funny thing is, I always walk with a cluster of people but they always seem to single me out! Is it because I look approachable or because I look like I need unsecured lending?

And I felt bad because it has happened many times, just with a different sales person from a different bank.

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The face they made…or the face that I imagine they made when I turn them down

Situations like these are very common. It seems that all financial institutions in the country are trying to sell the easiest form of credit facility – the credit card. Leveraging on what is considered Malaysia’s favourite pastime which is going to the shopping mall, these sales agents get to work.

I don’t blame them, I can understand the pressure of trying to achieve monthly sales target. A guy I know from the Cards department in my company said that his sales agents do feel discouraged from being turned down so often.

Here’s a few ways to avoid them:

  • To tell them that you already own the object that they’re selling. This would work with internet service providers, mobile service providers and even credit card companies. Probably wouldn’t work with cosmetics especially if they’re the persistent types who would pull you to the side and start spreading random cream on your skin. Ugh.
  • One of my friends liked to say this to credit card agents – “I already have too many debts”. And before he could start telling his debt-ridden life story, those agents would turn on their heels so fast.
  • Tell them your annual income is less than RM24k, and that you already own 2 credit cards. They’d usually be like kthxbai.
  • If you can’t get rid of them, join them. Some of my friends would sign up just for the freebies, and cancel the credit card once they received them. Heck, sometimes your application will get rejected but who cares? You got freebies!

Goodbye 2016…

Greetings. Publishing my first ever post before the end of the year. It’s funny how time flies by so fast, even when you’re not having fun, isn’t it? I am a bit sad that 2016 is ending, as it’s my last year of being in my 20’s. Sometime in 2017, I realise that in every survey, I will have to tick the 30’s age range box.

Well, nobody can stop the passage of time, and life goes on.

That said, to mark the year of my entering the 30’s, I want to write about my goals and aspirations of the future. Sure, it’s going to be a bucket list but why the hell not?

Healthier Lifestyle

Seeing as I’m not getting any younger, I should really start living healthier. This means I’m going to try these things:

  • No more instant noodles
  • Less caffeine beverages, more plain water
  • Less sugary beverages, more plain water
  • Eat more greens and fruits
  • Exercise consistently
  • Don’t skip lunch/breakfast even when I’m too busy
  • Moisturise more

 

Maintain Relationships

  • This goes without saying. Cherish my parents and siblings, none of us is going to live forever.
  • Keep in touch with my old friends, because I want to care about them and not just for the sake of old times.
  • Improve relationship with God.

 

Self-Improvement & Learning Stuff (Heck, I love learning new stuff!)

  • Improve and level-up on Japanese. At least finish all the Joyo kanji and brush up my conversational skills.
  • Video editing skills. I don’t know, I feel like I’d like to learn it.
  • Improve my writing skills
  • Read more books. I haven’t had a lot of time to read this year, so I want to read more in 2017.

So that’s it. It’s easier to manage by keeping this simple. I’m hoping to come back to this post at the end of next year and see how many I’ve ticked off.