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The Man And The Secret

'Sorry sir, you're sadly mistaken. Our lies were just for fun.'


Those words played silently in the back of his mind, as children in a playground would. Hushed and content, yet somehow impatient for a chance to let loose. To break past his lips, the barrier which so forcefully contains them against their will. It's not that he doesn't want to free them. Quite the opposite, actually. He'd rather not have the responsibility of all this wordplay. He'd rather be rid of them and carry on, like before, in his ignorance. He liked not knowing. It was much easier that way. No worries, no watching out for word-slipping or tongue-tying, or any sort of thinking before he spoke for that matter. Now he fumbles his words even in reply to the simplest of questions. Someone had asked his name the other day. For some strange reason, he'd muttered under his breath a name which sounded similar to his, but as if it was coming out of the mouth of an old homeless man with no teeth and too much whisky. 

Perhaps the heady mix of a secret and a promise was starting to get to him.

Those words weren't playing now. They were shouting, screaming, like kids in a supermarket throwing tantrums because they 'wealy, wealy want to eat dose choklits!'. They were agitated, losing all of what little patience they had to begin with. His complexion is changed now. His eyes are nervy, strained and stained red from all the sleepless nights. Most were spent talking to himself, a futile effort at comforting himself. His hair is ruffled and unkempt, though he never notices, never even cares about that anyway. The only thing he sees in the mirror is worry. The most noticeable change though, is in his lips. Pale and dry, like a man parched, thirsting for a gulp of cool water to relieve him of the agony. They trembled and twitched, itching for a reprieve. He looked just as an innocent man on death row would. 

Those whispers were turning into screams. And he couldn't take it much longer.
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This Is For Lovers

I'm a sucker for romantics. Enjoy.

To see me make a complete fool of myself, click here. Yes here. Here. For the outtakes.
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Automatic Eyes

'Lies only work when they trust you.'

Trust is a mistake. 

It doesn't even exist. It's a lie we tell ourselves to calm the nerves that become desperate for relief. A light drug we take that relaxes our minds, allowing us to think that things will be fine, that people don't lie. But that's the thing with drugs, isn't it? They're addictive.

So we gladly stroll on the tightropes of optimism, treading gently above the disappointment that lurks way below if we ever were to fall. We'll smile to ourselves giddily, either due to the lack of oxygen at such heights, or the fact that we still assume that others don't take advantage of our trust. Probably the latter. We don't notice the games people play with our trust, the ones played so freely behind our backs. Not at first, at least. Sooner or later we turn around though. Sooner or later, we see. The shock of it causes us to lose our footing, and our perfect balance drawn from the ignorance of belief vanishes. We fall. 

And all the trust that was spent on them now seems worthless, like loose change lost in the labyrinth of streets and alleys that frame the steps we take. Forgotten, as the spoken words of promises so usually are. Forgotten, also, like those promises that never really made it. Because people forget. Grudges are so hard to hold onto, no matter how hard we don't want to let go of the resentment that reminds us not to trust again. We'll forgive. 
And the cycle repeats. 

'Chicago is so two years ago.'
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Second Guesses

'My compulsive bad habits do little but add,
To the convincing aesthetic I've built as a mask,
It's condescending to think that I'm new and improved,
I only twist the nails and hammer the screws.

And these monochrome rainbows survive long enough,
For me to see that the colours have turned into doubt,
The golden ring around my head just weighs me down.'

Those two verses are from a song I wrote a while back. 

We're paralysed by insecurities that freeze our hearts with such sad self-pity. Like a poison with no antidote, we can only wait. Hope comes along for the ride, at least until the path turns rocky and it decides to desert us for better company. 

Insecurities consume us. Minds rigid with discontent, the flaws that make us who we are now flicker into flames impossible to ignore. Shelterless, we run from ourselves. These moments when we question ourselves are mercilessly raw as we confront our own fears in the privacy of our thoughts. Old worries resurface. Sleepless nights encountered. 
Overthinking is a trap we lay for ourselves. I've never known why I do it.

Some days are just more depressing than others.
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I miss acting. 

It's freeing. On stage, we're thrust into that temporary escape from ourselves. The life we led no longer exists. We're someone else, a stranger we know well. Our fictitious past plays into our hands as we mould the very minds we're about to embrace. It's unexplainable how satisfying it is to immerse yourself in the skin of a person you never were, you never could be.

Actually, it's just lying really, really convincingly.

I took part in the SEA Forensics earlier this year, an international competition held at ISKL. This sounds quite braggy, to me at least, but winning silver for solo acting and duet acting has got to be one of the proudest moments in my life. I know where this is going, so I'll stop writing before I descend into more self-adulation. It would be very rude of me.

My duet acting piece, 'Accident', apparently made the principal quite angry when I performed it in front of the school after the competition. Everyone else thought it was funny. Purple shirt boy is my brother, for those who were asking/were going to ask/asked but forgot the answer.

My solo acting piece, 'I Quit Girls', was self-written a week before the competition. I didn't show any of my teachers the script before the competition because they definitely wouldn't have let me use it. At the start, I contemplate turning gay because I was so depressed with women. Apparently that's a 'senstitive' topic. It was just meant to be a joke. No, really.

Those green words up there? They're links. Try clicking them. 

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Hits, Misses, Dead Ends

'You kiss me like an over-dramatic actor who's starving for work, with one last shot to make it happen.'

Expectations aren't kind.

They won't speak gently into your ear, motivating you with tender words and warm encouragement. They won't pull you up, push you on, or ever bring up your sense of self-worth. They break you. Like a marathon runner shackled with a weight at the ankles, you drag this burden, heavier with every step. It's an unnecessary weight shouldered on the backs of success. The more you achieve, the more they expect. It's never enough. 

I have a fear of expectation. People tend to think that I'm encouraged by it, that I'll try harder if they tell me I can do better. More often than not, their words only wind tight around my wrists like handcuffs from the tips of tongues. They restrict me, causing a tide of anxiety to wash over my sight and blur the paths of even the simplest tasks. I'll feel the unblinking strain of their judgemental eyes on my back just waiting for a mistake to jeer, a fault to criticise.

So I let them down, and I let myself down. I fail, intentionally. It's better to give up and fail than to even bother trying at all. However twisted the logic may sound, it works. It succeeds where my effort hasn't, relinquishing me from the expectation that became too much to bear. People don't understand why I would choose to do that. They could never comprehend why I would waste my talents, my potential merely because I'm scared to fail. And that's where everyone is wrong.

I'm not scared to fail, at all. Far from it. No, it's the complete opposite. I want the option to fail. I want it to be there, in the back of my mind, that small guarantee that says there is no guarantee over anything. I want it to keep me grounded, sheltering my perseverance from an ego's complacency. I want to be allowed to fail.  Expectation limits you, because it sets its minimum at perfection. It's all or nothing, there's no other way. Without it, I'm free to win or lose as I please, risks and chances abound. And I like it that way.

'Dream of demons while you sleep that make you stutter when you speak.'
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Needle And Thread

'One by one, the knots we've tied will come undone,
Like picking locks, we'll sow our seeds beneath the sun,
Our accomplice is the rain, with patience, that of the saints.
We'll try to document this light, with cameras to our eyes,
In an effort to remember how being mended feels like.'

I'm not much of a model.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not a model, and I don't plan to be one. It's just that if I were actually a model in some far-off parallel reality, I'd be terrible. The fine art of picture-taking is lost on me. A shop window mannequin is probably more coordinated than me at posing, and most of them don't even have the luxury of elbow or knee joints. No, it requires a certain amount of pride and confidence in yourself, borderline arrogance maybe, to really be comfortable taking pictures. Especially so they don't turn out the way that any of my attempts at hiding my awkwardness do.  

I much prefer words.

They're irresistibly personal, freeing my thoughts with such tangible self-expressiveness. They're not static, not motionless like the frozen split second of a snapshot. They'll weave around your mind, leaving a trail of imprints, of impressions that feel almost dreamlike. We write in black and white, yet think in technicolor. We write words and phrases, but they conjure up rose-tinted memories and vivid scenes. Pictures just leave me with a sense of emotional detachment. They don't capture the moment, they merely capture moment. One that would otherwise be lost and forgotten by the time the next click of the camera comes along.

It's a paradox I find poetic, almost. That something written and read could be more beautiful than something seen. How meaning is so lost in the chaos of a picture that it seems eerily distant. We've all looked at pictures and not wholly recognised ourselves, but somehow we'll always feel a link when reading the stories we wrote as a child. It's because the lines and dots that appear from the tips of our pens are more than just that. They're an embodiment of our thoughts, more so than the exaggerated emotion we see in photoframes. Well, for me at least.

We rely on our eyes to see, not feel. People forget that.