Daily Log #100

This will be a rant post. Just had to do it for the sake of my sanity.

If it’s me who decided to spend more time playing video games and put aside my writing, it’s on me if at the end I can’t produce anything. It is also on me if my blog’s viewership is falling dramatically because I stopped producing any good content.

However, it is not on me if I didn’t write anything because of circumstances beyond my control.

Today is a great example. Train services decided to break down due to power fault, stranding many passengers, including me, for an hour in a stuffy and super crowded station.

Yes, I could write as I waited. But these days, Singapore is so hot and humid that you will still sweat even if you are standing under a fan. For me, I have both primary and secondary hyperhidrosis, so this weather makes me even more uncomfortable. And my skin these days is so sensitive that even sweat that didn’t dry properly causes me to develop hives.

Then there is the crowd that make me feel even more flustered. I hate crowd. Don’t do well with it.

And making situation worse was the lack of free shuttle buses to transport affected passengers to the remaining stations. So I had to walk at least two kilometers to get the next station where it also has a bus interchange.

So ended up, I wasted two hours before I could finally settle down and relax. And relaxing before writing is what I do, especially after work. It is so that I can use the time to formulate or think about what I want to write about. Or simply to refresh my mind.

Two hours of my life gone just because of public transport failure. And I’m only just one person. What about the countless people who also wasted their time just waiting for some sort of transport to get home.

Is SMRT going to compensate affected people for causing distress and time wastage? I guess not.

The situation won’t be so bad if alternative transportation are readily available, the station isn’t so crowded, and the escalators continue to work. With the latter being down for maintenance, it affected the flow of foot traffic because people can’t go down the stairs fast enough.

Now that I’m home with so little time left before I need to turn in for the night, I really don’t know what I want to do. I’m still feeling pissed and flustered.

I tried to watch some shows but Netflix Singapore is pathetic in terms of its choices. So many movies or shows are missing.

And no I don’t even have the mood to play any games or read any books.

 

Daily Log #99

This is my 440th log or journal, depending on how you want to call it. Even so, I still hadn’t really learn anything meaningful when it comes to writing. Maybe there is slight improvement in my grammar and the speed in getting my thoughts out. And possibly improvement in my ability to express myself.

If I am to dig deeper and be honest with myself, writing these logs has definitely helped me in recognizing my feelings and my thoughts better.

And that’s probably one of the reason why my updates these days have been inconsistent. I only write when I needed to process some things in my life or to document significant events of what happened. This way, I can review one day in the future of where I have been and what I have done.

That aside, I only have two things that I want to note down.

The first thing was that when I went back to work on Friday, I saw the email sent to me by HR asking me to confirm if I will be taking any more paid annual leave from now till September 3rd, 2018 because they wanted to calculate the final payment. The reason being it’s the one year anniversary of my two year contract with the company. Leave not taken, as stated in my contract, are converted into cash. However, what was weird was that the person used the subject ‘Resignation Leave Balance’, making it look like I have resigned from the company. Even better, the email stated that September 3rd is my last day at work.

I replied saying I won’t be taking any more and asked, “I thought my contract is two years.”

I have yet received any reply as the person would only come back to work on Monday.

Me being me, I will just assume the worse and that the company decided to kick me out without notice. That means, they will have to pay me two months of salary in addition to the completion bonus as well as any other bonus payable stated in the contract.

And I will also start looking jobs and going for interviews.

You must be wondering why I don’t wait for further clarification.

Now, I experience the world through meaning and expression. Those things affect my decision making. Therefore, words that you use to describe something has to be correct. The final meaning of a sentence has to be exactly what you intend to communicate.

And it tend to rile me up if I realize you are careless with the words used. Well, it’s one of my pet peeves tied directly to my personality.

When it comes to a new job, there are things I am also aware of.

Like for one, I want to transit into being a UX designer but without the appropriate practice, portfolio and actual experience, no company would hire me. So I will end up being stuck as your run-of-the-mill software developer. And yeah, I don’t even see myself as an engineer. Not in the traditional sense anyway.

My reason for wanting to be a UX designer is so that I can humanize technology, therefore making technology a less “stressful” thing people have to deal with. It’s part of my life goal, “To help everyone, including myself, live stress free.”

I will further expand on the goal with the following:

“To help everyone, including myself, live stress free through designs and creations.”

I design my own life. I’m intentional about it. I know what I like and dislike, thus the things I buy, use and do all serve to make me live stress free. And that is including choosing friends over professionalism because friends reduces my stress and being professional does not.

So now you see, I’m consistent in this way.

The second thing was I spent half of my Saturday playing Mass Effect: Andromeda. So far I have enjoyed myself and liked the story.

Of course, I didn’t really read the reviews but the initial scores of the game did affect my purchase decision. That’s why I waited until several weeks and when the game is on sale before buying. In fact, as of late, I have already mostly stop buying EA games because of the way EA treats its games.

Yes, I know it is a business and the video game industry is cutthroat but there are video game companies that balance profit and making great games while not sounding like a money grabbing company. Look at Guerrilla Games. Look at CD Projekt. Impression these days are ever so more important. Good impression always lead to higher profit in the long run. And how to leave a good impression? By being honest, have integrity and deliver quality. That’s what I always believe.

And I’m well aware business exists to make money. It is a given. But if you keep saying it, keep hanging it in front of everything you do, then you lose me as a customer. I will stop giving you my money just because you love money so much.

And that’s probably why I spend more money on Apple than any other technology company so far. They don’t speak money. They speak quality. They speak how they want to change the world and make it a better place. Their message is consistent in everything they do. Even when it comes to spending on buying companies, they are rather stingy about it. If they can develop in-house they do it. And that is a company I can get behind. It will always have my support…until the day they decided to be like any other money-grabbing companies.

Ok, that’s all for now. I will be off to watch The Package on Netflix.

Daily Log #98

It’s Singapore’s 53rd year of independence today but I didn’t feel like it is a holiday. My mood had pretty much been destroyed by the sudden onset of fatigue, full body aches, and allergy that saw me downing a few painkillers and anti-allergy medicine. I practically laid in bed from 12 noon to 6 in the evening.

In the morning, I went about playing Mass Effect Andromeda on my Xbox while feeling the constant pressure to check my phone because I’m on standby for the National Day parade. It was work-related. You see, the security application I was building with a team of people was deployed for use today. The application was pretty much what my previous mentor termed “proto-duction”. What it meant was that the application was still in proof-of-concept and development stage being used in production environment for SIT and UAT. The customer insisted that my company have a few people on standby to respond to any issues within the hour.

Since I was involved in the Trump-Kim summit a few months back for four-days straight starting from Sunday, it was my colleague’s turn this time. She wasn’t around that time as she went on an overseas trip with her family. However, it doesn’t mean I get away completely scot free. I am involved in the access control aspect of the whole application and so if there are any access rights issue, I would have to deal with it. At least remotely.

But as I said, I was practically attached to the bed sleeping. So I wasn’t much of a help. And I’m feeling guilty about it.

And I shall talk about what happened yesterday.

The whole morning was actually a sleepy one for me because of the anti-allergy medicine I take.

Now, I know I sound like a weakling but then I have always been dealing with allergies since young. I have had a nose that seem to run non-stop when the weather changes, go into a dusty environment, etc. Then in my late teens, I developed chronic urticaria that I continued to deal with today. As I got older, both of them always strikes simultaneously. Excessive work = hives. Eat wrong food = hives. Didn’t sleep well = hives. Exercise too hard = hives.

Compounding the problem is I’ve got acne outbreak every now and then. I even have keratosis pilaris on my arms, thighs and back. Those become worse when the hives strike again.

But I digress.

As I was saying, my morning yesterday was a sleepy one. Then came afternoon, it was no different. After lunch and a short nap, I felt better. At it got closer to evening, I was called to go down to site to deal with an issue with the application.

I told my team lead that I have to go by six because I have got an appointment with my friends. He said he hope the issue can be resolved before then. Separately, he asked if I could cancel or postpone the appointment. I told him no. It was a movie. Tickets already paid for. Then he said he could pay me back the money if I missed the movie. Then he went on to say my friends would be proud that I’m doing something related to the national day and won’t mind me being late.

Honestly, I doubt my friends would be proud of anything.

That aside, I’m actually quite pissed at that offer to pay me back if I missed the movie. It wasn’t so much about missing the movie but rather about missing the chance to meet up with my friends, whom I don’t see often because all of us are busy with different things. Who knows when we will meet up again.

You see, I treat meeting my friends as though it is the last time I will ever see them. That mindset and combine with the potential regret of not meeting up with them is simply enough for me to drop everything.

There was once when I had stomach flu then and was in a bad mood but nonetheless I still went and meet up with my best friend of twenty plus years. I also dropped everything to meet up with another friend for just a dinner just a few weeks ago.

So by offering to pay me back is like cheapening the whole thing. My friends don’t worth only $13 (the price of a movie ticket). They are priceless. The ones I care about, I will definitely be there for them in whatever capacity I can provide. If they want me to go eat dinner at the last minute, I will go. If they want me to accompany them to an event, I will go despite my reservation about crowds.

So if you ask me to choose between professionalism and friends, I choose my friends. And so I told my team lead that meeting up with my friends is very important to me, more than the national day celebration. Then I also said that there’s always a workaround for the issue he wanted me to resolve. It’s a matter of whether the user want to temporary use that workaround.

Yes, I know users are users. They will want to do things in a certain way. Everyone has their preferences. But the problem he wanted me to fix is potentially an implementation issue, at the code level. Combine with the fact that there is a code-freeze or deployment freeze, I don’t really see how we can fix it.

It took my colleague and I nearly an hour to figure out what’s going on. I realized that access checking function had an issue where it always return false when it had to deal with more than two groups assigned with resources.

Put it this way, I implemented both resource-based access control and role-based access control. Resources are assigned to groups, also known as resource groups. A user has to be given roles and resource groups in order to do anything meaningful in the application. And there was an issue with the resource-group checking.

And you know what, once we realized what’s going on, I hated myself so much. How can I be so careless to write an access checking function that looks right on first glance but don’t really work in runtime?

What about testing…

Well, as for testing, I admit, there wasn’t much because we were constantly being distracted by new tasks, new demands, etc. I have repeatedly said that I don’t do well when there’s too much going on. I really just can’t do it. It’s both my curse and blessing for I am a highly-sensitive person.

Anyway, we went ahead to delete data so that each resource is at max assigned to two resource groups. Then we got the tester to test everything again. When it works, I feel so much better.

After that, I went scrambling off from the place to catch a westbound train. Once I reached the mall, I went straight to queue up at the Japanese restaurant to get seats first while waiting for my friends to arrive.

During the dinner, we just catch up on stuff. After that, one of them left because he’s not joining us for movie. As for the movie, we watched The Meg.

I found the movie to be suspenseful enough and exciting. There were also parts that were funny.

I had hoped that it help to lighten my mood but it didn’t. Deep down, I was still feeling pissed on the way home. I even didn’t sleep well because of intense rumination. All kinds of scenarios were playing out in my head like movies. All the what ifs..

Daily Log #97

I didn’t do anything productive today. Didn’t play any games or read any books. Instead, I just went and watch some videos on YouTube and tried to find something to watch on Netflix. However, the Netflix Singapore collection is just pathetic and starting to wonder if the $17 I spent every month on subscription is even worth it. So many shows and films are missing. What I can get on iTunes now is only available on Netflix months if not years later.

And I came down with some sort of allergy. So after taking anti-allergy medicine, I went for a nap. When I woke up, I went for a jog like I always do on a Sunday. After I came back, I had some biscuits for snacks and went ahead to rent A Quiet Place on iTunes.

I seriously love how the show keep me on edge. I’m constantly worrying for the characters as they navigate through their environment. Any noise made would very likely attract the attention of the monsters. I didn’t really need the subtitles to know the family dynamics. Besides, I can read some of the hand signs (since they are using American Sign Language) used because I have been watching videos by this YouTuber. I especially like his cover of Sanctify and Sick Boy.

Watching A Quiet Place has also given me some inspiration for what kind of creatures or monsters I want to create for my books going forward. I have noted it down in a notepad and will probably revisit it later.

I also spent an hour or so to edit my novel. It’s already done in terms of the story I want to tell. However, as I got down to editing, I noticed that I hadn’t really gave closure to one of the story thread. I have a rough idea of how to close that but for now I will just focus making sure Chapter 1 and 2 is good to go. By that I mean publishing it for people to read.

For editing, I primarily focus on making sure, as best as I could, the grammar is right and there aren’t any inconsistency in the story. I also made sure certain sentences are rewritten to tighten them for clarify.

Going forward, after this novel is fully published on this blog, I will get down to create a very rough guide of the worlds, environment, enemies, the technology, the characters needed to continue the story. A few months back, I have done a basic event timelines starting from the year 2030 until the beginning of the events in the series of novels or short stories I will write set in the same fictional universe.

And I’m pretty ambitious in terms of the amount of novels I will write for this fictional universe. I see about six full fledge books and probably a couple of short stories. Let’s just say, I’m drawing my inspiration from Halo, Star Trek and Star Ocean with some sprinkles of ideas from other science fiction content I consume.

For now, I’m not going to monetize this fictional universe that I’m creating. It’s just a pet project that I want to create for my own self, to prove to myself that I am capable of creating a huge science fiction universe.

Oh, I did complete a novel a few years back. My intention was to set it in this current fictional universe I’m creating. But as time went by, I felt that it was more of a variant and non-cannon. Now, I changed my perspective to see it as a trial, as a test whether I can complete a novel.

I will probably put that novel up on my blog as individual post for people to read. Until then, I suppose a pdf version would suffice. You can download it here.

Daily Log #96

After Halo, Gears of War 4 was what kept me engaged for the last four days. Once I reached home from work, have a quick shower and I will be playing on my Xbox until it was time to sleep. I finished the game campaign by Saturday afternoon.

When that was done, I continued to spend the next two hours or so playing Mass Effect: Andromeda. Despite all the bad reviews and comments about the game, I thought it was still a decent game and will at least keep me occupied for the next few days if not weeks. After all, it’s a RPG game and I tend to take a long time with these kind of games because I want to complete every quests there is. I can get pretty OCD about it.

Of course, I will probably go back and play the Halo games again to collect all the achievements and complete optional or bonus objectives.

I’m also looking forward to Shadow of Tomb Raider. Thus far, I think the game looks pretty good. Then there is the quest system with customizable difficulty for different aspects of the game (exploration, combat and puzzles) which definitely is interesting.

Games aside, my professional life is also doing relatively ok. It’s at where I want now.

As I have said repeatedly, I have no desire to climb the corporate ladder and only want to focus on creating stuff either through code, writing or drawing. Thus far, I’m enjoying myself with creating great looking user interface for users to work with when they use the application my team is building.

However, there are times when I just feel unmotivated or disappointed at work because of how low in terms of quality one of my colleague goes when it comes to usability and design. I feel like I’m taking a step forward only be forced to take two steps back. It’s just frustrating.

I still don’t get why this company is at such a state where there is no investment in having a full-time UX designer/writers to craft a great user journey for the application, don’t have resources to implement continuous integration and yet keep getting us to get ready for demo after demo.

Do you know that for every demo we need to prepare, we spend at least forty man-hour not doing development work just so that we can test, prepare deployment packages, go onsite, deploy and test again? There are always at least two people involved for deployment of both the client and server application? One of them is me.

Then there are situations where certain sub-system running on a different servers decides to break down or stop running. And those sub-systems are critical to the function of our system. The vendors responsible for those sub-systems don’t seem to be providing a very good support and actually asked us to fix their issues. So even more time spent there. I’m definitely not happy with it. My colleague, well… even more unhappy since she is taking the brunt of it.

And do you know that that in that forty man-hour, I could have completed two medium-sized features or one big, difficult feature? I could also have refactored many of my codes and fix silent bugs (these are codes found during reading that could potentially break in a certain scenarios). Or I could have created a simple user journey with storyboards and then implement that in code.

The company is like trying to do devops but is just not practical given our existing strengths and weaknesses as well as project requirements. There are still tons of features not implemented.

I definitely feel that the company is just chugging along, still thinking they are the best in the world. It’s a system integrator trying to be a product/solution house but doing a poor job at both. It’s not a good place to be in.

But still, I try to make the best of it because I don’t want to go to work every day and torture myself. I have not really decided to join another company because I believe that it is the same everywhere else. I just don’t think that there is a truly great tech company in Singapore that does things RIGHT and INSPIRING. Hell, I don’t even believe in my company’s motto, vision, and values. What I have seen and experienced have pretty much destroyed those beliefs.

Daily Log #95

These past few days has seen me being more creative in the sense that I have been actively creating and updating JIRA tasks. It all stemmed from the current situation where my team lead allowed me to work mostly unsupervised and alone.

You see, over the last few months, I have always mentioned and complained that the constant interruptions to support different activities is really counterproductive. I couldn’t get anything done effectively or right. I’m pretty sure it’s the same thing as other people. Humans just can’t multitask. All that complaining and requesting have finally gotten through.

And now, my team lead is able to see the result of leaving me alone to do my thing as long as whatever I created is aligned with the project scope and requirements. We even talked about that while we were going for lunch. I can tell he’s happy with the end result.

In case you are wondering, I have created four, maybe five, brand new JIRA tasks about various functionalities and improvements that wasn’t really described in the requirement specification within the week. It even created a situation where we have to review what we have done to see if they were correct. The situation of “let’s create, show the customer and wait for feedback” is still ongoing now.

I can tell you right now, I’m happier and feeling my job is now more meaningful.

Now, this attitude, or you can say personality, of mine that is always wanting to create has always been there. After all, it is the same approach that I took when I do transited to do into freelance mode when I first started my career. I can tell you that till this day, if my client is willing to pay, I will continue to enhance and improve what I have already created. I will keep churning out ideas to implement so that the application will be better than before. I may even overhaul the existing functionalities just to improve it if necessary. Sadly, my client no longer seems willing to invest any further.

But, it doesn’t mean that this same attitude is applied to the things I hate or have no interest in. Like I won’t actively seek out to do marketing, sales, or talk to people.

That aside, I am definitely leaning towards getting a iMac 2018 version once Apple refreshed that line with better processor and GPU, and wanting to get rid of my PC before that. As for my pre-existing Steam library, I will probably get rid a whole bunch of them since I don’t play them anymore. I will switch the ones that I still play for Mac version if they exist. For example, games like Cities: Skylines. Otherwise, I’m good with playing the remaining games on the Xbox One X since most Steam games that I have now are cross-platformed. For example, games like Doom, Tom Clancy Ghost Recon: Wildlands, Tomb Raider, Everspace.

Then, I guess I will probably upgrade my current 1080p television to a 4K version, if not, at least get a slimmer one. The one that I have now is like 8 years old, possibly even older, and very bulky.

Well, all the above sounds like a plan but it won’t happen until I pay off that installment plan that I have.

And that leads me to wanting to talk about my current face.

The skin definitely looks younger and has less blemishes. It will take several more days for the renewal process to complete and then another three weeks for the result of INFINI RF treatment to show.

Maybe it’s premature but I will recommend my friends to go to this clinic if they really want to have a younger and nicer looking face.

That’s all for tonight. I’m still spending way too much time on my Xbox.

Daily Log #94

I just realized today I made a mistake.

I spent some time this morning to calculate my expenditure on my main credit card as well as how much I have paid off. It turns out, I topped up additional $236 because I didn’t bother to calculate how much I owe when I made a $800 repayment the day after my facial treatment.

If it was a normal expenditure, it would have been fine but as you know, I went for a acne scar treatment that cost me $7,400 and had to pay that off using a 0% interest free installment plan with my primary credit card. With that additional $236 I put into the card’s account means that I have made a prepayment of the installment plan. And the bank’s term was that if there is any prepayment of any amount for installment plan, they may charge me an administrative fee of $150.

Sigh…

It’s really my fault and I doubt I can get it waive off. So I will wait and see what the bank do when they send me the monthly statement later this week. This is the time when they consolidate all the transactions I made and determine how much I owe.

That aside, I decided to go ahead and buy two more games for my Xbox One. The first is Gears of War 4 and the other was Mass Effect: Andromeda. Both of them were on sale and I thought why not.

I have also installed Halo Wars 2 on the console and imported all the saved data. Previously I was playing that game on my Windows gaming pc. As the days goes by and I spent more time on the console, the urge to get rid of that pc grows stronger.

Reasons are simple. Gaming console has a easier maintenance and faster startup. I can just jump on and game without thinking much. PC need a longer boot up time and is much slower overall…you know with all the Windows update and stuff. Anyway, games these days looks nearly indistinguishable comparing the PC and consoles, especially if it is mastered for Xbox One X. There are also more compelling titles on the consoles than the PC these days. By that I mean, there just ain’t much exclusive games on the PC with a very strong story, characters and good gameplay. Most are multi platform. So I stop seeing any good reason to keep the desktop.

And for general purpose computing, I have my MacBook Pro and iPad. Even my phone can do things my PC can do.

So maybe by the end of the year, I would get rid of the pc…

That’s all for today.

Daily Log #93

My face finally stopped looking like a tomato. I have also removed most of the dead, dried skin and scabs from my face. However, I have not seen any improvement in terms of hypertrophic or depressions cars. Even the ice-pick type scars are still around. After all, only a few days have passed and it can take up to a month for the repair process to finish, and improve the overall look. At least, I think most of the brown marks are gone except for certain parts of my face due to recent acne outbreaks.

That aside, I finished the main campaign of Halo 5: Guardians, having started yesterday afternoon after finishing Halo 4’s campaign. Now I just waiting very eagerly for Halo 6. That game will use a new game engine call Slipspace, which is actually the primary form of faster-than-light travel in the Halo fictional universe. 343 Industries prepared a demo called Halo Infinite to showcase the game engine, and in my opinion, how future Halo games built on it would look like. Information about the new Halo game is scarce except for the fact that it will focus on Master Chief after fans complained about Halo 5’s multi-characters viewpoints, the story planning started back in 2015, and development on the game is progressing well.

Personally, I would like to see more of Spartan Locke too. Hopefully, there will be a separate game for him and I won’t mind either a RTS like Halo Wars or a first-person shooter. I also would like more story about the Spirit of Fire after it was pulled through slipspace to The Ark after drifting for twenty over years since the battle on Shield 0459. I’m curious as to who is able to pinpoint the location of Spirit of Fire and open a slipspace portal for the ship. Some fans are saying it could be the Gravemind located on High Charity, which had crashed on The Ark and under quarantine by Sentinels. I guess we will have to wait and see where 343 Industries take the story.

Then there is a Halo TV series currently under production and it would be huge for the franchise since more people could be introduced to it. A TV series could put it on equal footing as Star Trek and Star Wars. Now, I’m looking for Halo’s Fanco POP! toys. Looks like there are more coming soon in 2018!

Come to think of it, it’s actually a very lonely thing when there is no one else in your immediate life that shares the same interests. And most of my friends are mostly attached, married and some even have kids. I’m one of the few who remained single because of my desire of not being tied down to someone. I still pretty much like my independent life with minimal commitments. So the only other thing I could do is to participate in the Halo community, just like what I did during the Command and Conquer’s heyday.

I have actually been distracted by YouTube while I was writing this Daily Log and feeling kind of tired…

But…

Just one more update before I call it a night…

I went out with my family for a dinner on Saturday evening. We ate at a place call Uncle Leong Seafood, located at 15 Lorong 8. The place is located inside Bradell Tech, a light-industrial zone.

My apologies for the lousy photographs. But I really don’t think anyone takes photo of their food anymore and I take these photos just for remembrance sake. I rather focus on eating my food, so I took quick snaps and be done with it.

The signature fried Tofu…

Cereal prawns…

Stir-fried broccoli with scallops and carrots

Herbal chicken…

Fried Yam Ring

Steamed Sea Bass…

And finally, Chili Crab!

Some buns to go with the Chili crab… mostly for dipping.

So that dinner cost about $320, split between my sister, brother-in-law, myself and my dad. Because of the high-expenditure this month, I find myself not being able to buy any more expensive stuff until I pay off at least half of the installment plan.

And in case you are wondering where is that book I’m writing… well, I still hate myself for not putting any more effort into it other than the occasional sentences and edits I done while traveling on the train. It’s my fault really. Nobody else. I was too engrossed in the Halo franchise and that was kind of my focus the whole two weeks. Other than that, I was stuck in my own head, daydreaming about which direction I will take the stories I want to write…

Daily Log #92

On Tuesday, I made an Wednesday appointment with a skin clinic so that I can get the acne scars treated.

I was struck with two waves of acne outbreak, the first during puberty and the second was during my university days. It was the second wave that caused the scarring.

On Wednesday, I went there after work and had my dinner before that.

I registered and waited for consultation with the doctor. At around 7.40pm, I went into the doctor’s office, he explained to me the process and the treatment available, dependent on my budget. Then I was sent out to the counter again where the staff would explain to me the packages available given a certain budget.

I told the staff that I have a budget of maybe SG$6000. Then she asked if I could stretch it a little because there are certain combinations of the package that is more suitable for my current condition. From SG$6000, it became SG$7400 after tax and I agreed to it though it was painful to see my credit limit go down by that amount. The good thing was that I have a credit card from a participating bank that offers 0% interest rate installment plan. So it will cost me around SG$616 per month to pay off the debt.

So that means I won’t be able to get the new MacBook Pro or iMac, the latter being something I desire to replace my current gaming desktop so that I can move on to pure console-based gaming. The other being the iMac is a cleaner machine, so much more, than a gaming desktop because of fewer cables needed.

But I digressed.

So my treatment plan consisted of 5 sessions VBeam laser, 2 sessions of Infini combined with Rejuran. The VBeam laser treatment was alright because of the numbing cream. For Infini, because of the use of micro-needles, they had to give me local anesthesia but I still feel like being slapped repeatedly. The doctor explained to me that he targeted the main branches of nerve in my face but there are areas that have nerves from other branches that won’t be completely numbed.

After Infini, it was time for Rejuran and the doctor said it will be a painful one. Well, I wasn’t sure how painful it was until the first delivery. That hurt like hell despite the numbness. And I had to live through the pain as the doctor did the injection all over my face. It felt like my face was being pinch sharply and then jabbed with something very sharp and large.

When everything was done, my face looked like I had too much to drink and it also looked puffy from all the drugs. I asked the doctor to give me a medical certificate for me so that I didn’t need to go to work on Thursday.

On Thursday, the redness was still there but my face wasn’t that puffy anymore. I suppose it will be a few more days before I start seeing any result from the VBeam treatment. As for the Infini treatment, it will take up to a month or more before there is any effect.

So I guess for the next one year, I will be under debt as I pay off the installment plan. It’s too bad that the bank will charge me $150 if I choose to pay it off early. If not, I would have use my bonuses from my work to pay it off.

Daily Log #91

Over the last week, I managed to finish Halo CE Anniversary, Halo 2 and Halo 3: ODST while a quarter or possibly midway through Halo 3 campaign. Thus far, I have really enjoyed myself and continue to love the fictional universe of the franchise. However, I also know that I hadn’t gone as far as digging out every aspect, design decision, throwing out theories, etc. about the franchise like most hardcore fans do.

With that aside, work today was quite uninspiring because I had to work on something that was supposed to be done months ago. I didn’t finish it because I got very overwhelmed by the constant need to prepare for demos, go on site to do deployments, and that I was uninspired to work with codes written in a style and manner I don’t agree with. Even after so long, I still feel bored by the work.

Making things worse was that I didn’t have enough sleep the night before and was super sleepy throughout the day. Since my body don’t do well with caffeine these days, I had to force myself through it.

As the day went by, it became clear to me that I wasn’t doing very well with the design of the functionalities required based on how haphazardly I wrote my codes and skipping the use of local database to call the external API instead. Even my colleague commented that she wasn’t expecting me to drop the quality of my work by doing that. I shrugged.

Anyway, recently I have been thinking about scaling back my career to focus on doing the only thing I enjoy doing. That is to write codes to create stuff for people, nothing more, nothing less. From where I’m sitting, being an intermediate software engineer in a big company means that I have a lot more responsibilities. Those responsibilities are distracting and overloading me from the things I do enjoy. And it will only become worse as I go further along.

But there is also the question of salary: would I still be able to get the same kind of pay I’m getting now and if not, how comfortable am I to get a pay cut?

I’m just not sure if I have an answer yet…maybe I’m really looking for certainty that I won’t regret it before committing to any decision.