Sunday, January 28, 2007

A Long Week, "Everything But The Brain" and Christian Friendship

This post makes sense to, maybe, 5 8 an unknown number of people? Thanks guys for your friendship in Christ. Am glad to have gotten by With A Little Help From My Friends (even though the assistance may well have been unintentional).
Minor NegotiationsSuperdog Dinner  :'-(
It was a long (time being relative, see) week at work, where dinner meant Superdog and early dinner that meant at 10pm we mosey-ed up to the nearest food-source, a gilded Chinese restaurant of the sort that only does good business at reunion dinners and business lo heis, and ordered takeaway in the kind of earnest Cantonese (despite not being Cantonese) that has never failed to so warm the cockles of the MSG-ladden heart of many a Chinese restaurant manager that he cannot help but put extra ("I give you extra. Enjoy, enjoy.") in the takeaway. Despite such generosity, was grateful for short timelets away from food in plastic boxes, tedious negotiations, flickering computer screens and dreary bits of paper.

(Must also add that thanks to sympathetic calls, sms-es and gchats, there was nadda a peep of Keane's "Somewhere Only We Know", misheard.
Props also to the I for furry comic relief contained in an Avenue Q CD:

*images from Avenue Q
Princeton - at a loss about what to do with a BA in English, Gary Coleman (yes, that Gary Coleman), an orientalAsian-American called Christmas Eve, Rod the self-denying closet homo-whatever, the B-side to mix-tape messages, Brian who made it known that he wasn't wearing underwear, Trekkie Monster the millionaire internet porn addict, and life outside one's apartment - a squished cat.)

At frisbee pick-up, there was a wide field of green grass under a wide sky and gusts of wind (surely, for the office dust), and laughing and shouting, and good sportsmanship, and lurking pools of mud to trap wayward soles. Time for new shoes, though not quite of the goody-two variety.

At Bible study on Luke 10:24-37, the Good Samaritan wasn't a goody-two-shoes to be emulated but a slap in the face for the expert-in-the-law who could not honestly hold to the conceit of having attained such perfection in loving God and neighbour.

At pool, amazing misses, brilliant longshots, accidental snooking and situational karaoke.

Macham "Community Spirit in Face of Terrorist Attack"
At Action Theatre and Jean Tay's "Everything But The Brain" where Gerald Chew was a young father with promise and a debilitated old man and swept the dust from our feet, and Pam Oei was a tantrum-throwing child and a menopausal princess and winked: Albert Einstein's theory of relativity, collapse-able/expand-able time explained by 3 bears with colourful pantaloons, travelling close to the speed of light to slow down time, a baby bear with slits for eyes at a grin and gravity-defying hair, a train to Malacca, an unmarried 36-year old physics teacher, a 66-year old scientist who suffered 2 strokes, Timothy Nga's unexpectedly young 27-year old doctor who doubled as an evil blood clot, a creaking swing, a ladder that was an upright hospital bed and also a ladder, a tupperware container fetish to contain leftovers and memories, a white sheet that could have been just a bedsheet, travelling the world with a brain in a tupperware, faint sounds of heart beats and tinkling and general ambient stuff (thanks Sonicbrat). There were absolutes around which all things relative fell into place. There was unconditional love pursued yet unpursued. There was conditional love that was a limp kiss and, as someone tried to explain, grotesque.
Gluttons' Bay
After: physicists trying to explain to lawyers and accountants how light is measured and relativity on quantum levels appearing as magnetism, black holes, dreaming of time travel and portals, a huge heap of hokkien noodles and oyster omelette and barbecued chicken wings at Glutton's Bay, a good recommendation of banana tempura (no mere goreng pisang, this) to be dipped in vanilla kaya, and laughing at Crazy Horse (Eng Wah promptly announced its closure that very night. But somehow, Channel Newsasia just isn't the sort of thing one admits to channelling).
Banana Tempura
And at no point did anyone hum Stephen Bishop's "All of My Life (It Might Be You)" from Tootsie.

(But speaking of lying on the sand watching seabirds fly...[cue: lengthy paranthesis]

One day, it was sunny!

Hearts fairly bursting with the freedom of dry ground and lack of precipitation, we grabbed swim stuff and towels and sunnies and hats and sunscreen and ran to the beach.

The joy of frisbees gloriously winging through the air, deliriously dizzy in bright blues and yellows. And in reds and whites, to lie on the soft sand when we were done, happy and hot, sun on faces, sun on necks, sun on limbs, raising heads now and then to drink from a pitcher of ice lemon tea. All around, the greenery imbibing their fill of the sunshine, chlorophyllicly ecstatically ecstatic.
It was a time for languid plans. Plans for a cupcakery in a bookshop. Plans for a cupcakery with white walls and a line of Kitchenaids of eggshell-blue and cotton-candy pink. Plans for a cupcakery with glass domes for a heap of thick dark chocolate buttercream ganache on dark chocolate cupcakes piled high, for a crowd of snickerdoodle ones rich with chunks of Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and Mars bars and slathered with peanut butter cream, for a huddle of lemon meringue ones like little browned puffs of clouds on solid summer. No red velvet with rainbow sprinkles please. Plans also for a bookshop with deep-chestnut shelves and cosy enclaves for long browses and rooms for Bible studies and talks. We will have a music compile: "Music To Scarf Cupcakes And Browse Books By", frosted with Under Byen, Jane Herships and her song for Clementine, and Kelly de Martino and Bumblebees, all fresh minimalist delicateness and floatiness for the sunshine outside. Perhaps we will also sprinkle on Mathieu Boogaerts for poppish sweetness. And if Sam Beam of Iron & Wine wanted to play less breathy stuff on Friday nights, I suppose we wouldn't protest too stridently.)
Chap Chye
Ah, but too many people, not enough meal-slots. Still, thankful for the fraction met before they sped through the clouds back to whence they'd come. At a meal with holidaying theology students, at first, it was all,"Woah, to spend all your days just reading the Scripture, talking about God's Word and listening to the Bible being taught! Always having someone at hand to discuss things with! To pray with! Studying the things of eternity! Without having to hide in your room or to exercise self-censorship! Shiok or what?!" And the reply was that sin is a real and stubborn thing and actually, actually, it required a great effort to get any Bible-reading done.
Cze Char Dinner
Late into the night, over bottles of China Apple (not a Mac) to maintain cheena-ness, looking into the eternity of forever, good heart-to-hearts, tearing over unsaved relatives and friends, the terrible offensiveness of the gospel to non-believers, the encouragement of God's lessons through different sorts of adversity, nonchalance over singleness, excitement over ministry plans and backup plans and backup backup plans and God's sovereignty, accountability partnerships, teasing out the hard work of friendship and loving one's brothers and sisters in face of universal sinfulness, fallen-ness and Babel-hood.

Thank God for the very good goodness of soul-mates: the friendship and mateship of fellow souls, with the same Father and same Lord, travelling the same road, towards the same goal.

Thank God for the very very good goodness of the one who is not a soul-mate, but better: for he has gone before us on the same road and so we follow in his footsteps. For when we walk in the shadow of the valley of death, when we join the black parade, where mates cannot accompany us, still we shall not fear, for there our Shepherd is beside us (Psalm 23).

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At January 29, 2007 9:58 pm , Anonymous Anonymous said...




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