Friday, November 1, 2019

20 years of independence

If you consider someone becoming truly independent only at the age of 21, then 20 years would have passed since I attained independence. In other words, happy 41st birthday to myself!

If you've seen me two decades ago, you wouldn't have recognised me as I was both extremely maladjusted emotionally and utterly insecure with my own appearance. The shoulder length hair and pudgy undefined body didn't help a single bit either!

I was supposed to be at my most active and free at that age but was constantly down instead and cried very often. Here's a song (just the lyrics as there's still a separate musical post later this month) I wrote for my 21st birthday to let you have a taste of my state of mind back then.


独白: 今天是我的生日, 第二十一个生日
        是什么样的一个日子, 我只能假装不知

被蜡烫红的手, 我也不哭

枯坐在角落, 闭眼想像

我只要一个人, 就那么一个人

我好想把它吹灭, 再许一个愿


[Birthday Party]

Voiceover: Today is my birthday, my twenty first
                What sort of day will it be, I can only pretend not to know

Using loneliness as decoration for my room
Letting it permeate this boring space
Then waiting quietly for the surprise that will never come
I light a candle helplessly
My hand burnt by wax yet not flinching
Because the pain has numbed my senses

This bustling birthday party
One with only love songs on the radio
Sitting idly in a corner with eyes closed
Imagining how this birthday should be

This bustling birthday party
Sadness is the only present
I only want one person, that one person
To share every moment of my life

This bustling birthday party
Just like the only radiance from the candle's flame
I really want to blow it out and make a wish
But I have waited for too long

It has become a pool of wax
Solidified within my palms

I was really quite emo huh. The worst thing is I liked to wallow in sadness which was very unhealthy.

Things started looking better when I started looking better after hitting the gym, something which I've written about on this blog before. The new-found confidence (albeit superficially obtained from validation from others - hey whatever does the trick right?) transformed me into a camera-loving part-time model with 40 photo shoots under my belt starting from 2007 (here are the shots: 1 2 3 4).

Though I've grown more mature and much surer of myself over the years, my body has not grown too much bigger. I know aging accelerates after 40 so I don't expect myself to continue being a model much longer but I'm very happy with what I've done so far. See for yourself how I've changed since my modelling "career" started!

Hope I can continue to add to the montage year after year and remain as healthy as ever. Happy birthday to me!

Monday, October 21, 2019

Musical journey (110)

It's 21st October 2019 i.e. exactly 7 years have passed since my bestie Phobee had her wedding and Ision and I were lucky enough to be able to join in the celebration back then. It wasn't a traditional banquet but a retro-themed fun and casual night of mingling at a seaside restaurant. I was involved right from the morning's "gate-crashing" which I've written briefly about here.

I've reproduced the wedding invitation and created a collage as well. They really bring back fond memories of that day. All of the people in the pictures (bar one) have since been married (most with kids), which re-iterates to us how much time has passed. By the way, big congrats to Eric's new-born girl!

I wrote some lyrics for the wedding but it didn't have a tune back then so I couldn't sing it that night itself (I did share the words in this post). I've since completed the composition (with some lyrics-adjustment for better flow) and have been waiting for an opportunity to give her the finished song and share it with the world. I think their 7th wedding anniversary is the best time to do just that.

Though they recently lost the companionship of their beloved dog Sushi, Phoebee, Ivan and their boy Evan remained strong. I hope this song, written from the deepest and most sincere part of my heart can add to that strength and keep this picture-perfect family forever blessed.

We'll catch up for sure during my trip home this coming Christmas to Chinese New Year period. I SO look forward to that and meeting Evan for the first time as wellboy, does he grow up fast! But for now, a simple wish from me would have to do. Here's to many more 7 years bestie, I love you so much.

PS: Pardon the gay wedding footage used in the music clip. This is coming from me after all! 😊


词  /  曲 : 锦泉

有了爱    世界才会变得更完美
用心爱    明天不再渺茫如一片漆黑
唯有爱    能涌上来    让我们往前推
没有爱    岂能活下来



他会用尽一生     不管有多苦


来自我内心最真    最深处

因为爱    你不再掉下一滴眼泪
你的爱    那最纯的爱





换他来爱你    每一步


Only with love, the world can be perfect
Only through loving with all your heart can we rid tomorrow of the darkness of uncertainty
Love is the only thing that can give us the surge of energy to keep us pushing ahead
Without love, we would not survive and it does not matter even if you had everything

The road ahead of you though bumpy, you will no longer be lonely
He will use all of his life through whatever pain and hardship to fill every single second of your life with bliss
Let the young shoots of love grow into a tree under your care
My blessing for you today comes from the most sincere depths of my heart

Because of love, you no longer weep
And that love so pure has finally found the rightful arms to rest in

I have worried and waited over countless seasons for this scene
Tonight, that smile on your face that you cannot hide gives me contentment that I have never experienced before
The love you have given has always been unreserved
But after tonight for the rest of your journey, let him love you every step of the way

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Musical journey (109)

How time flies and here we are fast entering the last quarter of the year. Something big happened two days ago and it's a fast-developing situation but I can't really speak about it publicly yet. Although it's something not directly-connected with me, it's nonetheless impactful to someone who's very important to me. I'll say something about it once it's official. Other than that, nothing much else has happened in my life for the past month.

On the work front, there was a recent major development that created a great deal of uncertainty but as a contractor, I'm used to seeing these events (sell-offs, mergers and acquisitions, restructuring, retrenchment, etc.) and years of living it tough have made me rather resilient to the consequences from business decisions necessitated by shifting economic climates. There's also an office relocation (no more lockers and hot-desking finally!!!) and a two-day offsite team-building event next month to spice things up further.

Despite the uncertainties, there's still plenty of work to be done and I remain steady on my path plodding along, chipping away at the backlog that's growing by the day due to a hiring freeze, never stopping the countdown to my year-end trip back home. As my colleagues continue to take holidays during this period, my ability to stay focussed at work diminishes slowly. There's only a finite amount of time one can go without a break from work no matter how strong one is and I'm glad I don't have to put up with that much longer. By the time I take that break, I'd have gone without one for more than three years!

Now let's move on to this month's musical offering, which is another cover of one of 薛之謙's hits (my first cover of his is here). This is a singer/song-writer from China. Like I've mentioned in my previous post, his compositions, though still Mandarin pop, do sound a little different from that of others and that's why I'll keep following his music though I'm not sure how popular he is outside of his country. This time, I'm covering "怪咖" which is a Chinese slang word that loosely translates to "weirdo" or "freak", and the MTV depicts that quite well.

Stay tuned for my musical post next month as it'll be a very special one!

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Nude abandonment (part 3)

It's time for more of my nudeness again and this post features the concluding part of my "Nude Abandonment" series (all posts are here: 1 2 3). If you want to see more of me uncensored with snaps from shoots not posted on my blog before, leave a comment and I'll let you know the details of my photo book packed with full-frontals.

I hope laziness doesn't get the better of me so you won't need to wait for another year to benefit from my need to exhibit!

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Nude abandonment (part 2)

If you're still hungry for more after the first part of my "Nude Abandonment" series (entire series is here: 1 2 3), here's the next installment. Again, my sincere apologies for the eyesores emblazoned on my skin, it's beyond my control!

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Nude abandonment (part 1)

I can't believe the last time I posted a shoot series was more than a year ago (here) at the start of winter 2018! I've been so lax in my duties to share my pride and joy with you a.k.a. my glorious nudeness. The issue of a lack of flesh on my blog is going to be alleviated this month so you guys can stop whingeing, if anyone's even looking at my blog...

This series was shot in Singapore at an abandoned army barracks (in Kranji if you must know). I've been told it's been torn down so you won't be able to find it now. The obvious advantage of shooting at abandoned places is the ability to go nude without a care. That's why photographers and models alike flock to these locations to explore their artistic and exhibitionistic sides.

Aptly titled "Nude Abandonment", this series offers tantalising shots of me in various stages of undress. Sadly you have to use your imagination to get past the ugly orange circles and the watermarks that the photographer insists on using. I hate them so much but there's no other way of censorship allowed by the photographer!

If you want to see the uncensored shots (albeit still with the watermarks), you can inquire about my photo book. I have re-edited a new version since that first release with just nudes and full-frontals. Just ask me for details by leaving a comment! If not, you can follow my blog to see more from this series (all posts are here: 1 2 3). And now feast!

Saturday, August 31, 2019

Musical journey (108)

It's the last day of winter and hopefully it's also the last day of my procrastination in this tax season to file and reluctantly hand over my hard-earned money to the government. It's so unfair that the everyday workers pay much more tax than the large corporations but I guess this is one of the age-old well-accepted by-products of capitalism. To make things worse, with the recent acquisition of a major rival, my company has reported never-before-seen profits but trickle-down economics will ensure I see none of that money. Sad but a fact of life. The only thing I hope that will happen out of this is at least some enhanced job security and that the axe of redundancy that's been swinging inches above me for so long can temporarily be removed.

Well at least I have the warmer weather and the chance to show more flesh in public to look forward to! I hope come next week when I start gaming on a new release, I'll not get too distracted from the continuation of my search for hang-out buddies (preferably at nude beaches)! By the way that search is really not going too well as friend-making needs to be organic. My previous attempts at trying to steer people perhaps only keen on hooking up with me towards more of going out on a social basis just seemed a tad artificial or even coerced. Maybe I should go crazy at next year's Midsumma Carnival and join all the social groups and hope that at least one will result in the successful revival of my once-glorious social life (when I was living in Sydney).

Speaking about Midsumma, there's talk that the company I'm seconded to right now might march in the parade with the recent creation of its Australian PRIDE Chapter. This is quite exciting as I’m now officially part of the Chapter Committee (just a mere location representative though). Also on the work front, I told one colleague who has been trying hard to train me as part of a handover of his role (before our boss gives the endorsement) that come October/November, I'll be inquiring about contract-extension and if there's no extension, all his training efforts would be wasted and he'd have to start again which is something he wouldn't have time to do. Although I know that discussion will not amount to anything, I still hope something happens in my favour somehow. That being said, it's not the end of the world if my secondment ends as there's currently plenty of work back at my home company.

When work stress gets to me, one of the hideouts I go to for a respite is the warm shelter of music-writing as it never fails to pick and perk me up. Sometimes I write new material in various genres and languages and at other times I inject new life to old stuff. With this variety, fatigue out of repetitiveness never creeps into this creative process. This month's musical journey features old fictional lyrics (posted here more than 9[!] years ago) now added with a new tune, one which has several extremely high notes. I know a lot of you will think that I didn't do those notes well (I did them in my real voice, not falsetto so I think it's a great effort!) but like I always say, these clips are really the equivalent of quick scribbles in a jotter and so are never meant to be perfect. Instead, they are simply done to freeze my ideas and thoughts at that moment in time into a neat and convenient little package to be listened to over and over again and sometimes improved upon.

Songs that don't originate from true stories are always less meaningful to me but writing them is a perfect way to sharpen my skills and the more I write the better I get. This month's musical sharing is a composition in this category so enjoy!

[I Don't Wanna Cry]

词  /  曲 : 锦泉

I don't wanna cry

I don't wanna cry, I know I've tried

I don't wanna cry

I don't wanna cry, please say goodbye


I don't wanna cry, just tell me why

I don't wanna cry, I don't wanna lie

[I Don't Wanna Cry]

I don't wanna cry
The feelings are all gone
Please stay outside the door
I've failed myself
Letting you near is the harm I've caused myself
I say, serve me right

I don't wanna cry
I know I've tried
The dark night and tears always have to come together
Only because you've long seeped into my veins

I don't wanna cry
The fatigue and dependence that's stuck on me
I can't shrug it off
I shouldn't have
Letting you stay is the torture I've given myself
Please, not again

I don't wanna cry
Please say goodbye
Let this be the chance for you to repay your debts
Why do you still refuse to leave?

Why do you refuse to leave?

I don't wanna cry
Just tell me why
Time and tears are always in a race
Trapped by thoughts of you
I'm knee-deep in a sea of fire

I don't wanna cry
I don't wanna lie
If I could cry you out of my heart
I would continue to endure in tears

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Musical journey (107)

Winter is slowly moving along and I'm also plodding along at the same steady pace with no great ups and downs, just the way I like it. I've recently put up my hand to be the Communications Lead for the committee of the first Australian PRIDE Chapter where I work and hopefully I'll get confirmed soon as the response thus far has been lukewarm and they need as much help as they can get. It's such a large multinational company and I'm really surprised the Chapter has only been formed recently so there's much to do in that space. As a contractor, I'm always looking for ways to embed myself deeper into the places I've been seconded to for increased job security. Moreover, "PRIDE" or "People for the Respect, Inclusion, and Diversity of Employees" is an initiative I believe in so why not?

On the non-work front, I've started planning for my year-end break by contacting some friends and asking if they would like to go on short trips to nearby cities with me. The places I'm currently considering are Penang, Bangkok, Seoul and Taipei. Such things need a great deal of time to finalise and although I still have about five months till the start of my seven-week vacation, time will fly past for sure and before you know it, it'll be all too late so I need to try harder. On the home front, Ision will be back at work in less than a week's time when his long break comes to an end. I must say having him around in the house all the time feels good but of course he'll say he needs his peace and quiet and hates that I'm around all the time. But I know my presence gives him comfort too, as much as he would like to deny that.

Lately I've had people contact me on dating sites (where I put down my blog's address) saying that they really like my blog. These are strangers who tell me they've been following my blog for years which means they know lots about me while I know next to nothing about them. I guess I shouldn't feel weird because this is what blogging is all about right? But having someone contact you like that still feels a little creepy and the fact that it's nice at the same time just makes me a little conflicted inside that's all. Whenever I receive such messages, I always ask them to also listen to my music instead of just looking at the pictures as my compositions, covers and live singing videos are perhaps the more important part of my blog.

Talking about my music, this post contains my second last topless KTV clip of this series (previous installments are here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9). I hope you're not sick of seeing me sing topless in skimpy shorts yet as I intend to make and post even more. This is not only because I love performing and singing, I believe it's important to show people your true self as social media posts (pictures especially) become increasingly staged and fake. Videos are much more honest and down-to-earth and I think that's what the online world needs more of now.

This month's clip features Alanis Morissette's "Uninvited" which is part of the soundtrack to the movie "City of Angels". By now you can probably tell that I really like singing in the higher register and that's not only because I get praised for my falsetto, it also takes less effort. I like the parts of "Uninvited" where there's minimal accompaniment as that allows the maximum showcasing of my voice, which is something I'm super proud of. I can't wait to film my next series which will show off something else I'm really proud of as well—a much leaner and tighter bod than what you see below!

Sunday, June 30, 2019

11 Oz years (part 4) / Musical journey (106)

My past 11 years in Australia have shaped my views on investment and work, had influence on my health, seen me being same-sex married while copping same-sex racism at the same time, and made me miss home so much more. The last bit about missing home when it was still raw and fresh culminated in a song posted here where I wrote:

On the night of my departure as I went past the customs gate with the image of my family and friends starting to get smaller and smaller behind me, I was overwhelmed by a deluge of emotions. I continued to push on despite these hurdles in my heart clouding my sense of direction…

I can still remember those emotions as if that night at the airport occurred yesterday even though much has happened since then, which also explains why there hasn't been a tune to those lyrics until recently (slight modifications were made to make it flow better). In this last post of my "11 Oz years" series (the entire series is here: 1 2 3 4), the complete song can finally be unveiled. The clip shows what I would have seen through the plane's window as it took off with that tiny red dot I called home for 30 years gradually becoming even tinier.

11 years are a significant milestone but I'm here for the long haul (especially since Singapore is not going to make any progress on gay rights anytime soon which was made painfully obvious recently in this article). Hence I have a few more 11 years to make the best of, and I hope they will all be healthy and happy.


词  /  曲 : 锦泉

眼眶热了, 红了, 湿了


一页页的回忆, 翻阅我脑海里
一年年的成长, 有你的呵护维系

没你的日子里, 我会照顾我自己
没我的日子里, 请不要垂头丧气
在遥远的土地, 我会珍藏那快乐回忆

一页页的回忆, 翻阅我脑海里
一年年的成长, 有你的呵护维系

虽然是不忍心, 却是不得已
我要让你知道, 我真的很爱你

[No Choice]

My eyes are getting warm, getting red and getting wet
I cannot believe tears actually fell
Where is the embrace I just held in my arms?
My heart is where I preserve your love

Why are my legs getting heavier as I walk?
As I continue to look forward
This is the choice that I have made by myself
I just cannot believe my wish actually came true

Pages after pages of memories flipping in my head
Year after year growing up in your tender care

I will take good care of myself when you are not with me
Please do not be dejected when I am not with you
On faraway soil I will cherish those happy memories

Although I cannot bear to do this, I have no other choice
I really want you to know that I love you very much

Sunday, June 23, 2019

11 Oz years (part 3)

Yesterday I would have lived in Australia for exactly 11 years and now it's time for the next post in this series celebrating this anniversary (the entire series is here: 1 2 3 4).


I moved to Australia after having only been in my first real post-graduation job for a few years (the one-and-a-half-year American training stint before that didn't count). This means that much of my work skills, both hard and soft, were learnt in Australia. Perhaps the biggest thing I've "mastered" after these 11 years is the knowledge that hard work doesn't translate to success in the workplace and sometimes it's not even required. What you need to do is to work smart and not hard.

Work is a never-ending process and so there's always more work to be done but a smart worker knows the exact things to tick off in the work list to get ahead and wastes no time by doing the bare minimum in each area in order to rise up. These people tend to be climbing the so-called "management ladder" and leaves the people on the "technical ladder" to do the real work. They then use the output of the workers below them to make all the major decisions. In return, they get paid more and are in a position to access even higher positions, all while standing on a not-so-strong base.

A clever worker also knows that it's who you know rather than what you know that matters. Once these "geniuses" identify their targets, they hone in and walk in their circles, both in and out of the office. Opportunities get given over lunch room conversations and social gatherings and a lot of times, these people move into roles that you don't even know existed. It's especially helpful knowing the right people in the management ranks so that you can help them progress their initiatives and in the process allow them to know your abilities and become "indebted" to you. In that way, they're more likely to offer you the next juicy promotion because you've robbed everyone else of valuable face time with the managers.

You might be wondering since I know all this, why am I still stuck as a worker bee in the lower rungs of the company? This is all because I'm an introvert and society unfairly favours extroverts and conveniently ignores qualities introverts bring to the table. In an ideal world, both personalities should be treated equally but the real world is far from ideal. This results in the two "management/extrovert" and "technical/introvert" silos we see in almost all workplaces. This is made worse when extrovert bosses selectively groom their fellow kind as they're deemed better management material and it becomes a vicious cycle. It's impossible for an introvert to fake being the opposite just to compete because it's extremely taxing to keep up a false persona, believe me I've tried. There's only one thing you can do and that's to accept that life is unfair and resign to the fact that you're destined to be a drone ripe for exploitation by other people eager to climb above you. I have to emphasise though that I don't think I'm any less capable or valuable as an introvert which is another thing these 11 years have taught me.

11 years working in a hydrocarbon projects-based consultancy firm has planted me in permanent crisis mode as work is always stuck in an unstable situation, sensitively subjected to oil prices and world events. My recent attempts at trying to entrench myself deeper into where I'm currently working at by doing my job really well haven't been successful. This is especially demoralising when I've been told I'm doing a good job by the person whose role I'm trying to get which he's more than glad to offload as he's having too much on his plate. I still have some time under my existing contract to continue pursuing this endeavour but I'm beginning to chase diminishing returns so my internal "give-up" mechanism is slowly kicking in.

If I knew 11 years ago how unstable it would be to stay in a consultancy firm post-Australian mining boom, I'd have chosen the other more stable job I was given at an operator company then (i.e. not a consultancy-type organisation), a job that I rejected as it didn't pay as well. Silly stupid me! I absolutely hate regrets and sadly I'd have to live with that big one. Fortunately I have plans in place to get out of this depressing rat race before I lose all energy required to do the things I like (refer to the first post in this series under "House-hunting"). I'll not be in the same situation at the end of the next 11 years, that much I know for sure.


My last full-body health check was done before I moved to Australia which means I'm in the dark with regards to my health condition for at least 11 years now! It was a blood test at that time which picked up the issue of high cholesterol which was later reversed with a drastic change in diet over half a year. That was also the time when I had my last and only colonoscopy which turned up zilch. I really need to get my next one done especially when the cancer gene is in my family (my father died of bowel cancer). I should also start getting annual health checks. When you feel healthy and nothing's wrong on the surface, you get lulled into a sense of security which might even equip you with a sense of invulnerability. That is till you get a health scare which is exactly what happened recently.

As you know I'm on PrEP and one of the possible side effects is a loss in kidney function. In my last three-monthly checkup as part of my PrEP prescription requirement, my kidney function eGFR test came back with a result of 53mL/min/1.73m² which was below the minimum of 60 for the doctor to be able to continue prescribing PrEP to me. Although I was told this was only an approximation calculated based on some formula and not a definitive indication of kidney health plus the fact that I was likely dehydrated on that day, I was still on edge over the period of time waiting for the results of a retest. For this second test, I made sure I wasn't dehydrated and sure enough it went back above that minimum number, to 63.

Like what many would do in my situation, I went online and Doctor Google revealed that "53" fell within "stage 3a" which is mild to moderate kidney failure! That gave me quite a scare initially but since my index was 69 when I started taking PrEP and it has fluctuated in the 60 to 70 range since April 2017, I really shouldn't be that worried and this was what my doctor (the real one) said too. Moreover eGFR is based on how much creatinine is in your system with creatinine being mainly produced by muscles and I have a much higher muscular mass than average people. My doctor told me that eGFR tests for people with little muscles sometimes can give a false indication that their kidneys are healthy. Still, years of snacking on high-sodium tidbits, lazing out on processed food and not drinking enough water must have had some adverse effects on my kidneys. I know I should cut down on snacking but bad habits die really hard and it should be fine if I do everything in moderation right?

The Australian diet consists of more meat so that mustn't be helping either ever since I've moved here. That being said, I eat mainly chicken (white meat) instead of beef or lamb (red meat) although pork is my favourite which I believe is red. Luckily I don't smoke and don't indulge in alcohol like many Aussies and I also cut down on carbs and sugar (thank goodness I don't have a sweet tooth). As a Chinese person, it's excruciating to remove white rice from your daily diet but I've learnt to live without it over the past many years. I'm currently trying to reduce my intake of artificial sweeteners too as a safeguard even though the jury is theoretically still out on the harmful effects of aspartame. Finally, I not only disallow work stress to get to me as I'm not those ambitious kind wanting to rise up fast (as I've painfully written above), I do keep to a strict exercise regimen which is maintained even when I'm not feeling well. All this combined must at least count towards something right?

Even if these 11 years of hard labour in the gym don't amount to a clean bill of health, at least I feel happy when I look at myself in the mirror (which partly explains the countless naked selfies). At the end of the day, I think it's this positive state of mind that's crucial for one to stay healthy. Tell me honestly, won't you feel good too if you see this in the mirror? 😉

And this concludes the third installment of this series. I'll see you soon for the last one.