No, I don’t have a problem. Okay, maybe I do, so?

(not mine, unfortunately, I’m still starting up my collection :D)

So… if buying one nendoroid is just a sort of ‘oh, that’s cute, I’m getting it’ and then getting a second one is ‘hmm, okay, I do see the appeal of these adorable critters’, what does having half a dozen more on your wishlist/slowly making their way to you count as?

Wait, what are nendoroids, you ask, since I only briefly gushed about how adorable Hozuki was in a previous TiLT post, so here’s the wiki definition:

The Nendoroid (ねんどろいど nendoroido) series is a brand of plastic figures created by the Japanese Good Smile Company in 2006. They typically depict characters from anime, manga or video games and are designed with a large head and smaller body to give them a cute appearance. Their faces and other body parts are exchangeable, giving them a range of different expressions and poses. The Nendoroid brand spans a variety of different products: the original 10 cm figures, smaller Nendoroid Petite figures, additional display tools known as the Nendoroid More series as well as plushies and play sets.

Why did I develop this sudden crazy for nendoroids, you might ask. But if I think back to some years back, well, there was a time when I was completely mad about BJD – Ball-Jointed Dolls, but as I was only in secondary school, I could hardly afford to get one, so I mainly just browsed livejournals and quietly wished I had the money to buy my own, but gradually, I guess I forgot about them, when I was too busy doing gods-know-what with my time. (Oh yes, I was also crazy about the EGL fashion trend back in school, except I’m too fat to pull it off [how to look gothic and elegant when you’re fat, hurrdurr.] And it’s also way too expensive, even now, for me to consider.)

(this lady makes me wish I could sew… I wanted to get pictures from the LJ I was following previously, but they were on hiatus, and everything was taken down ;_;)

So yeah, as compared to BJDs, Nendoroids are slightly more affordable, and cuter in a sense. I mean, BJDs are ethereally beautiful, and also slightly creepy in a sense, but Nendoroids? They’re straight up chibi-fied cute.

The new Nendoroid in my collection? A throwback to my childhood:

I hope they’ll make the whole set, with Syaoran & Toya & Yukito. I know Tomoyo exists, and she’s definitely making her way here somehow, but c’mon, I need the whole gang to enact awesome scenes. Also, Toya/Yukito shipper here, yes, I was probably shipping them even before I discovered what the whole BL genre was when I was a kid. Man, I should re-watch this series sometime. Along with Magic Knight Rayearth :D

Things I Love Thursday

Are the days sort of blurring together for you as well? Sometimes I don’t know how I’m keeping track of the days other than ‘oh, I have to go to office today’ versus ‘today is piano day’ or ‘tuition time’.

I think that I really love it when people are spontaneous – to just text each other with a ‘wanna hang out’ and we drop whatever it is (assuming it’s nothing urgent/important) and make time for one another. It’s getting harder to meet up with people these days, because everyone has their own lives to live and I’m not the best at connecting with people either, so it’s really fun when it’s done at a spur of the moment, like a ‘dude, I could do with seeing your face for a couple of hours’ thing.

Anyway, had a 3/4 chums meet up, gossiping about classmates and bitching about theses/work. Man, I’d rather be writing a thesis than wasting my life at my job. At least I’d feel accomplished after writing a thesis, even if it was a crappy one.

I made a little Lush haul the other day, mainly because I was running out of my usual toner:

– I said it once, and I’ll say it again, Lush’s Eau Roma toner is my holy grail, and I’m not even that sure why, because the ingredients list lavender water and rosewater as the two main ingredients… and c’mon, they’re so ordinary… but yup, this is my 4th or 5th bottle already.

– The name of this product might sound contradictory because the function of it is to clean, and it’s called ‘Dirty’. These Toothy Tabs are basically toothpaste in solid form, and I got ‘Dirty’ (despite its so-promising name) because it’s spearmint flavoured, and thus the most ‘acceptable’ flavour, as compared to flavours like cinnamon or green tea. I like my toothpaste minty, just like how I like my breath mints to taste like. Yes, I’m really quite boring.

But anyway, they work pretty well, though they do taste kind of weird, probably because I’m not used to the taste, just like how I need a period of time before I adjust to new brands of toothpastes that my mother likes to buy. The only downside of these Toothy Tabs? There’s no added fluoride, which helps to strengthen tooth enamel, and if they’re so concerned that the anti-fluoride camp would boycott their product, why not add xylitol instead?

– Lastly, I picked this Mint Julep lip scrub up on a whim, because well, it sounded nice and the sales assistant told me that I can just basically lick this lip scrub off and I was like, ‘awesomesauce!’ Yes, Mint Julep, are you seeing a pattern here? Also, the other flavours were kind of weird, like ‘Popcorn’ or ‘Bubblegum’…

sing me something new

times are hard when things have got no meaning
I’ve found a key upon the floor
maybe you and I will not believe in the things we find behind the door

if you’re leaving will you take me with you
I’m tired of talking on my phone
there is one thing I can never give you
my heart will never be your home

we’re good at this push-and-pull game, the one-sided conversations in the middle of the night, and subtle exchanges of riddles and codes. this is how we play the game, wearing a mask behind our masked faces already, hands hidden in the shadows. is it a knife or is it something less deadly, why we wouldn’t know until our fates are sealed. you can try to push, but what grounds can I concede? there are no walls, but just layers after layers of the darkest fogs. it is futile, you and I know, and time will pass and we shall both give up this endless hide and seek in this unending grim woods. and there, we shall say goodbye and let the days fade.

Guerlain; Pamplelune

Pamplelune – a portmanteau of two French words ‘pamplemousse‘ (grapefruit) and ‘lune‘ (moon).

Created in 1999, Guerlain’s Pamplelune is part of the Aqua Allegoria, a collection inspired by nature and are usually light summer-ish scents, with less complex formulations as compared to their main offerings. Google has told me that Pamplelune is still available, but I haven’t seemed to come across it at Guerlain counters here, or maybe I’m just not trying hard enough.

Pamplelune opens with a sharp burst of juicy grapefruit, its sweet citrus notes sparkling in the golden light. Bergamot features prominently throughout, slightly bitter orange peel mellowing against the tartness of grapefruit flesh. I find this to be an extremely realistic grapefruit perfume though.

Is this a simple basic scent? Yes, even after the scent dries down, I don’t get any further development, maybe a tiny tiny hint of vanilla sweetness at the base of the scent.

But it is simply gorgeous and I would love to have a 200 ml bottle of this to just spray freely whenever the hot summer days are upon us (actually almost everyday is a hot summer day here unless it’s monsoon season). The only downside to Pamplelune is that it does not last on me. Less than an hour and nothing is left on my skin other than the faintest trace of vanilla.

However, despite my love for this, I must acknowledge the fact that some people seem to smell this and think of body odour and/or cat pee… which goes to show how different our brains and perceptions of things are.

Things I Love Thursday

Yup, catching up on backdated posts once again. It’s weird, I prefer to write things down on pen and paper, and because of that I usually end up drafting posts randomly and then procrastinating the shit out of writing them.

I went to check out Artscience Museum’s latest exhibition, The Deep, on my day off. I actually wanted to go over the long weekend, but I fell ill.

The Deep brings together the most comprehensive collection of deep-sea creatures, with more than 40 extremely rare animals being displayed. Set in a pitch-black environment with vague ethereal sounds, the exhibition tries to transport you to an entirely immersive experience of being in the realm of the deep sea.

I really enjoyed walking around the exhibition, reading up about all these immensely fascinating creatures. While space is the final frontier, it is amazing how we have yet to plumb the depths of our own planet’s oceans. And when I say plumb, I don’t mean destroying the fragile beauty of corals or taking steps to further ensure the extinction of rare species, but rather exploring and learning about the creatures sharing our planet.

And speaking of space as the final frontier, how amazing is this?!

Dimsum dinner with the clique at Kowloon Express – also finally a meetup where all of us turn up. We were supposed to check out Mookata, but because of some dissenting opinions, we ended up choosing dimsum instead. I’m not much of a food person, so it didn’t really matter to me what we had, but the food was pretty good and not too pricey. Also, I never knew 321 Clementi Cinema mall existed until now.

There was a short 20% sale at JEM’s Kinokuniya over the weekend, and it took me just 12 minutes of indecision and walking about before I turned back and picked up this Hozuki nendoroid. Isn’t he just adorable~~ :D I like how the parts are detachable, and I can imagine if you have a few nendoroids, you can probably create a totally new character or something. So yes, I’m on the lookout for more nendoroids to add to my collection, but so far, the range is pretty limited to anime series that I’m not particularly interested in. (Okay, maybe I wouldn’t mind getting a Cardcaptor Sakura one, for nostalgia.)

Being too lazy to wash my makeup brushes but too squeamish of germs and dirt to reuse dirty brushes, what solutions do I have? Oh yeah, buying more brushes!

There was a sale going on at Luxola, so I picked up a set of Sigma brushes. I didn’t bother getting more smaller brushes since normally I’m too lazy to do anything beyond applying foundation and eyebrow liner, and maybe mascara.

And speaking of laziness, here’s me signing off.

yet another round of ‘last man standing’

Three of my colleagues have escaped the madhouse, good on them for finding greener pastures, but it also means that I’m losing my allies and helpful sources of information and gossip. Yes, information and gossip are two separate issues, and both are extremely important when you want to survive in an office setting.

 Now there’s only my other colleague and I remaining in our little clique to hold our fort. The fort of ‘people who don’t want to take your bullshit and your stupidity’. Also, it’s just somehow better to feel like it’s you & your allies against the world, or just, the boring office. And considering how lazy I am, I think she’s going to end up leaving first… fuck.

Colourless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage

I’m almost done with Murakami’s latest book, Colourless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage. Published back in 2014, I’ve only got around to reading it now, simply because I wasn’t sure if I wanted to get a copy of it. Instead, I forgot all about it until I was browsing around on Overdrive, which allowed me to borrow ebooks from the library. I borrowed this and promptly got sucked into the urban bleakness that Murakami is so good at portraying.

(Potential spoilers lurk, be warned.)

The book centres around the titular character, Tsukuru Tazaki, who is an extremely boring dude on paper. He’s fond of train stations, and in fact, he builds them for a living with his engineering (?) company. He constantly whines about just how empty and ‘colourless’ he is, in the sense that his personality isn’t magnetic enough for the people around him to want to stay with him – his first bunch of friends deserted him, the one friend he made in college vanished suddenly without reason. To be honest, I’d be really annoyed by how angsty and whining Tsukuru was, if he wasn’t for Murakami’s writing. Somehow, he manages to put across Tsukuru’s complaints and loneliness without irritating the readers (or maybe just me). The story flows easily, and many times there are some pretty good turns of phrases (but there are awkward phrasings too, which is just the side effect of translated texts). T

While Tsukuru did not annoy the shit out of me, Murakami’s inability to write interesting female characters continue to disappoint me. I don’t know if it’s a cultural thing, but his female characters are constantly boring and two-dimensional. After reading a bunch of Murakami’s books, they will start to blend together like one giant mish-mash of the quirky but not too quirky woman who will somehow spur the narrator along.

Not sure if I like the part about what happened to Shiro either because it feels like such a cop-out, and also, overall, I found that it would be more realistic in a way if the major characters were slightly younger than 36. Because still hanging on to things that happened 16 years ago and not being motivated to digging out the truth? Either I’d have moved on with my life or I’d have dug deep to unearth all the secrets that the people were hiding. In my opinion, the storyline started out strong, in which it was easy to just plow through the pages one by one by one, because you want to know the mystery behind Tsukuru’s abandonment, but after a while, you get kind of… disappointed, like ‘is that all, Murakami-sensei?! This is what you came up with when you gave us Hardboiled Wonderland & The End of the World, and Kafka on the Shore, and Dance Dance Dance’. Are you just churning things out in your sleep?

Instead of an old jazz record, we have Liszt’s Le mal du pays, taken from Years of Pilgrimage, as the theme enveloping the book. In fact, Murakami has even chosen to include the title in his own work, which seems fitting, since this book feels like a kind of bildungsroman for Tsukuru, even though he’s kind of old to be ‘coming of age’ in some sense.

si tu me olvidas

si de pronto
me olvidas
no me busques
que ya te habre olvidado.
~ pablo neruda

I was bound for the world of immortality. That’s what the Professor said. The End of the World was not death but a transposition. I would be myself. I would be reunited with what I had already lost and was now losing.

Well, maybe so. No, probably so. The old man had to know what he was talking about. If he said it was an undying world, then undying it was. Yet, none of the Professor’s words had the ring of reality. They were abstractions, vague shadows of contingency. I mean, I was already myself, wasn’t I? And how would someone who’s immortal perceive his immortality? What was this about unicorns and a high wall? The Wizard of Oz had to be more plausible.

So what had I lost? I’d lost many things. Maybe a whole college chapbook full, all noted down in tiny script. Things that hadn’t seemed so important when I let go of them. Things that brought me sorrow later, although the opposite was also true. People and places and feelings kept slipping away from me.

Even if I had my life to live over again, I couldn’t imagine not doing things the same. After all, everything – this life I was losing – was me. And I couldn’t be any other self but my self. Could I?

Once, when I was younger, I thought I could be someone else. I’d move to Casablanca, open a bar, and I’d meet Ingrid Bergman. Or more realistically – whether actually more realistic or not – I’d tune in on a better life, something more suited to my true self. Towards that end, I had to undergo training. I read The Greening of America, and I saw Easy Rider three times. But like a boat with a twisted rudder, I kept coming back to the same place. I wasn’t going anywhere. I was myself, waiting on the shore for me to return.

– Hard-boiled Wonderland and the End of the World; Haruki Murakami

Micellar Water

So apparently micellar water is the rage in the beauty world, or so the makeup blogs I frequent seem to suggest.

Basically, micellar wateris water formulated with micelles, which are tiny oil molecules suspended in water. These micelles help to grab unwanted particles (like oil and dirt) clinging to your face and dissolve them.

But while you can use micellar water in lieu of a facial wash, I prefer using products that foam and lather (even though they’re not good for your skin), otherwise I don’t feel like I’ve cleaned my face properly. Maybe it’s because my skin tends to be on the oily side so I don’t like the notion of leaving oil on my skin, even if it doesn’t clog pores. It’s supposed to be a one-step cleansing product, and you can even skip the toner, but… nah, I like my Lush Eau Roma Water toner too much.

So, my bottle of micellar water here is used mainly for removing makeup, which it does pretty well.

I was testing out a bunch of eyeliners and thought of writing this post, so I dabbed a few drops onto a cotton pad and wiped off a couple of times.

It does a pretty good job, I’d say. The last liner from Korean brand, Kradium, was quite a stubborn one though. In general, my skin isn’t exactly greasy after using the micellar water, and it’s gentle on the skin, so not a bad product to have. It’d be handy when travelling, and you don’t want to lug around a whole bag of beauty products, so this could work as both makeup remover and cleanser.

A Thousand Words and Perhaps A Little More

I don’t have an Instagram account, and I doubt I’d ever get one, considering how I’m not someone who goes around snapping pictures of my life. That’s more of my brother’s hobby, or so I assume, from all the different cameras he has. I’ve no urge to document the food I eat, or the books I’m reading, but there are a few Instagram accounts that have caught my attention. (Instagram is like a digital Polaroid gallery, isn’t it?)

01 blueeyedbiblio

02 wonderforest

03 ruki (from gazette)

04 lisa eldridge

05 fingers crossed tattoo co