Sede Vacante

The light is on but no one is home.

Archive for July, 2008

There are no windmills in Vietnam


So why VN?  Hahah… it’s business. Or in my case, pride. I’m not stuck here because of a sense of duty or a desire to keep my job. I really do want to see this company fly. Failure blows, and so long as there is someone willing to keep trying, I’m staying. It’s just sad that we made so many mistakes along the way with these guys.

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The third day is over…


Other than a not-so unexpected weight gain of about a kilo over the weekend, things are quite manageable as far as the nicotine withdrawal goes.  Physically, other than an upset stomach over the weekend, there really wasn’t much drama to it.  What’s more difficult is breaking the sheer habit of lighting up, and not having something to do when you’ve got nothing to do.

If you watched Trainspotting, psychologically, I’m right about at the part where the dead baby starts crawling on the ceiling….

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Weight Loss 101: Intake


This article is really an oversimplified rendering of everything I’ve had to learn (the hard way) in order to try get a grip on my weight.  It’s a battle that never really stops.  At the start of 1996, I was a hefty 86kg (190lbs).  By the end of 1997, I was down to a trim 56kg (115lbs).  I kept that weight until I got married in November of 2000.  By 2005, I was pushing 90kg (200lbs).   After two years of World of Warcraft, I found myself in Vietnam at a jiggly 110kg (242lbs).

At the time of this writing, after a glorious attack of insanity, I’m back down to 89kg (196lbs).  I’m planning to hit a healthier weight of roughly 60kg (132lbs) by the end of October.  At least that’s the plan.

This is part one of an expected 3 to 4 part series.  This part covers intake–essentially what you put into your gullet and how.  The entire article (quite long) is on the next page.

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A few beautiful days


The past few weeks have been utterly miserable for me.  I won’t get into the details of why; suffice to say that I’m definitely not happy with what is going on.  I feel broken and incomplete, and altogether disgusted with everything.

Just as things got almost unbearable, I got a few beautiful days.  Like a lover teasing me mercilessly, she gave me a kiss right before I lost my mind.

Anyway, a few photos of my beautiful days on the next page.

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Quitting smoking… yet again


In about two hours, I’m going to quit smoking.  Again.  I’ve done it before a few years back and stayed clean for more than 4 years.  But then again, since I’m smoking again (more than a pack a day since I landed in Vietnam), I guess it’s fair to say I’ve never really successfully quit.

I’ve got it all figured out.  I’m going to have to find something to replace this horrid habit.  I think I’ll use masturbation.  Every time I feel like having a smoke, I’ll just go right ahead and wank off.  That’s the ticket.

I smoke about 30 cigarettes a day at the moment.  I have a cigarette the moment I wake up, and before I go to bed; before, after, and during a meal, while I use the toilet, while I use my xbox, while I use my phone; while I work during the day, and while I relax at night; while I listen to music, and while I watch TV.

I’m never getting out of the door in the morning, am I?

Cigarettes I couldn't finish off before midnight...

Cigarettes I couldn't finish off before midnight...

Comfort is Opium


This is the best quarterpounder in the world.

I’ve been in Vietnam for 76 days now. It’s the longest I’ve ever been away from home and hearth.  It would have been ok if I were stuck in Tokyo or Amsterdam.  Sadly, despite all my efforts, I’ve realized that I’m irrevocably too westernized for my own good.

As I’ve said in a previous post, the problem with Ho Chi Minh (Saigon) is that it’s too much like Manila; in terms of the pollution, the noise, and the way things look like in general.  That means there’s very little novelty to living here other than the occasional trip to a pagoda or a temple (of which I’ve done enough to last me a lifetime).

And sadly, it’s not even enough like Manila (or any other western city) to lull me into a distracting level of comfort.  There are no real malls, there are no McDonald’s, no Starbucks.  And whatever elements of the west you CAN find (some cool bars and clubs), are so chock full of the “wrong” kinds of white folks and snooty nouveau-rich that it’s difficult to just have a good time.

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