Monday, 24 March 2008


I am going to divert away from issues related to babies this time but I'm sure it is still something that all of you can relate to. In fact maybe a few of you might even find the topic endearing.

Don’t be fooled by the title because nope, I’m not talking about the confectionery here. You should know by now that sometimes my post title is not quite what it seems. Anyway I, unlike the Mrs, am the “eat to live” type of person as most of you should know by now so I will not normally blog about food.

To be precise I am actually talking about a syndrome here, The Muffin Syndrome!!

For the benefit of you who do not know what it is, like the Devil, it goes by a few other names too. Such as “Love Handles”, “Spare Tyre” and “Pot Belly”. I am not counting “Beer Belly” because if you really look at them, there is a significant difference.

When I got married I found the Mrs secretly harbouring this idea that I should fatten up. By now, we’re into our 9th year of marriage, this idea is no longer a secret and truth be told it is not even an idea anymore. It has been acted upon and there is result!!

About 3 years ago we saw the most significant result (gain) as I jumped from a waist 32 weighing at a decent 74 kg to a waist 33 or 34 (depending on the cut and brand) and weighing in at 76 kg. All these mind you were “achieved” in under a year and without warning my neck has also grown (no, not longer). My shirt collar used to be 15.5 inches. Now I have to upsize to 16 inches.

Yes, I have contracted the Muffin Syndrome, you know, the one where one’s belly actually overflows over one’s belt?!?! I know I have not been exercising enough (alright, who am I kidding here right?!?! It’s more like NEVER!!) but somehow I feel the Mrs did have a part to play in all this weight gain hence some of the “credit” must go to her too.

Not sure if this is supposed to be comforting but lately I realized that I am not alone and I am beginning to suspect that there is this universal (ok I may have exaggerated a little. More like nation wide) conspiracy where the wives are all trying to fatten up their spouses. I am beginning to see my friends and colleagues being infected too and the interesting thing here is this Muffin Syndrome usually only happens after one gets married (happily that is).

Do wives really like to fatten their husbands up? Surely they can’t be that insecure about themselves to resort to fatten their other halves up to turn away the “would be” distractions out there right?

Or maybe it is our own undoing. Did we let it all go now that we are happily married with kids? Perhaps it is the more prosperous look that a father should carry?

In my case the Mrs was always complaining that I was too skinny and by putting on weight I will be more “huggable”. I swear she has this sense of joy, achievement and even satisfaction whenever a friend or anyone for that matter comments that I have put on weight. She almost always beamed like a proud mother! Oh and I say mother because the same applies to Isaac (I will show you pictures of his tummy another day).

It didn’t quite dawn on me that this could be a nation wide thing until one evening when we went out with my friend Mike and Kat for dinner. Mike was in this T-shirt which did nothing to hide his tummy. If anything it actually enhanced it due to its cutting (no offence buddy! You know I’m not much better off heh!)

*Mike has recently been make known of this blog because he is about to become a father himself so I thought he can learn a few things from you ladies just like I did.

Anyway the Mrs teased that he looked more pregnant than Kat, his wife. The Mrs said 4 months. Instead of getting an embarrassed or offended look that a husband will give should his friend gave the same comment on his wife, Kat actually smiled rather contently and placed her hand on his tummy rubbing away.

At that moment it all became clear to me. It’s as if the switch in my mind was turned on. You wives really do not mind your husbands putting on weight. Dare I suggest that you may actually secretly yearn for it?

Due to Kat’s pregnancy, Mike is also putting on more weight as we will normally expect from any husbands whose wife is pregnant. Mike calls this Sympathy Weight.

As for me, at least Isaac is already out hence I do not have to worry about the Sympathy Weight anymore. Guess the only thing left for me to do is to eat less and take out the old track shoes and swimming trunks……… or NOT!

Monday, 17 March 2008


Ever since I became a father I realized that I can derive pleasure from the smallest thing that Isaac does.

Take for example he finishes his milk and progressed from drinking 120ml to 150ml now. I get great pleasure from that. I can’t wait for him to progress to the next stage but according to Dr B, we should not be rushing things and he will let us know himself whenever he is ready for more milk. So long as he continues to gain an average 200 grams each week then everything is fine.

Speaking of weight gain, it did not really dawn on me how much he has gained until I took off his clothes to change him recently. Usually I only had to unbutton the bottom half of his romper but that night he wet himself so I had to change him. It was then that I saw his much rounder body. That sight really brought a broad smile to my face. Don’t get me wrong because I obviously know he has been gaining weight since we’re weighing him ever so regularly. Besides I have also seen him being showered but for some reason and I can’t quite explain it either, maybe it was the angle or lighting or perhaps the time in the early morning, it left a very deep impression. At that moment I can really see the gain in his body mass. My sis who has not seen him for a week commented that he is much rounder.

Sidetrack a little here. You realize that most people are careful not to mention things like fatter; heavier; cuter; rounder; prettier etc out loud in the presence of the subject / baby? I know both my mum and MIL will shush whoever mentions anything nice or good in front of Isaac. In case this person’s skulk is a little thick then they will bring Isaac to another room or simply away for this person and his compliments.

So to counter this, we will have to puff up our cheeks and curve our arms outwards to express Isaac has gained weight again. So a typical comment from my sis will be like: “Eh Kor, Isaac has really (show action) since I last saw him” this is acceptable for some strange reason.

Anyway, there are other simpler things that I derive pleasure from, such as him smiling back at me whenever I talk to him. According to a baby’s growth monitoring website, Baby Center, by the 2nd month Isaac will be able to recognize our voices hence he will smile whenever we talk to him. He usually smiles the most in the morning just when we were dropping him at my parents’ before heading to work. The Mrs always finds it very hard to let him go. She would always want to spend that little bit more time with him.

Then there is the cooing. According to Baby Center we should try and engage him in daily conversations which can be considered as a way of playing games with him. We will talk to him as if he understands but with pitch and tone alteration and he will coo his answers back. We should wait for him to finish before we say something again and if he is enjoying himself or the topic of discussion he will smile and coo again. This will usually go on for 15 to 30 minutes before he gets bored from discussing the Malaysian election and Mas Selamat’s escape.

On the sadistic side, I can even derive pleasure from watching him cry. If ladies have mood swings then they must have taken lessons from the babies because babies can change from cooing and chuckling to cranky before the blink of an eye. Sometimes Isaac will be cooing and playing with me and the next minute you can see his facial expression take a 180 degree turn. He will show you that he is unhappy before he lets out his cry. That 扁嘴 (pouting) look still leaves a very deep impression in me.

Obviously I do think of Isaac when I am at work and besides thinking of his peaceful (sleeping) and cooing (smiling) look, I will also think of this 扁嘴 look.

I’m sure I am biased here but every little wink or smile and chuckle from Isaac is the cutest thing that I will see for any day but I guess that’s just the way it is.

Friday, 7 March 2008


Last weekend was really fun for us because we invited a few friends over to our place. We have this gathering once in a while to catch up but instead of the usual eating out at some new fanciful restaurant I got them to pot luck at my place instead.

The main reason for this was Isaac was originally scheduled to go for his 5 in 1 jab on Friday so we were preparing for him to get feverish and cranky so we figured we had better stay indoor.

As it turned out our new PD, Dr Belinda said that we have the option to wait another month or two before giving him the jab. This is a good idea to me since he will be stronger and probably happier by then also. So in the end all the mental preparations came to nothing.

Anyway since all the arrangements had been made so we decided to carry on with the pot luck. I wouldn't bore you with the details such as who brought what but overall we had loads of fun and Mike along with his wife Kat (the people we met at Ikea when the Mrs was doing her unconfined-ment) chatted till after midnight. It was fun because we dug up old secondary school photos and passed around. Man, we all looked really silly back then. Mike actually said if he can go back through time then he will smack himself silly for dressing and posing the way he did. Admit it you will do that to yourself too won’t you? I know I will.

So that was Saturday.

On Sunday we met Mike and Kat for movie and dinner. The Movie was Fool’s Gold, another chick flick but I have to say a pretty bad one. Nowhere near "How to lose a guy in 10 days". That's for sure! So if you have not wasted your money on it then wait for the DVD and I mean rent it not buy it.

Dinner was Nasi Padang at the Rendezvous Hotel and that was the most expensive Nasi Padang I had ever eaten. The bill came up to about S$120 for the 4 of us although we did have about 9 to 10 dishes. I told Mike we shall go to the one opposite Great World City the next time. It has more variety and way cheaper too!

It was generally a good evening but the Mrs was in a hurry to return home because she felt guilty that we had left Isaac with my mum. She felt bad for 2 things. Firstly for inconveniencing my mum and secondly (mainly) she felt we should have spent more time with Isaac since it was the weekend after all.

She felt that as it is we are already very busy during the week so weekend should be spent with Isaac.

So when is it a good time, if ever there is one to leave your child in someone else’s care while you take a breather with friends? Or are we doomed to be our children’s slaves from the moment they are born?

Personally I did not and still do not feel as strongly as the Mrs about our little outing. For the record we were away for about 6 hours but the way I look at it, we are not doing this every weekend. I told her that we need some time for ourselves too so I proposed that we meet up with friends once a month without Baby and just do adult stuffs like going to places that are not children friendly.

Maybe this is the distinctive difference between the Man and the Woman; Mars and Venus; the Dad and the Mum. This is also maybe why in the animal kingdom the males will have no issue leaving the young behind and go source for food or in some cases a new mate (sad to say this is also applicable to a few humans too) while the females stay behind and protect the young.

I guess in many instances we are all still very primitive. Perhaps it is the carrying of the child that made the difference. After all the Mums had a 40 week head start and with body parts connected no less.

Speaking of 40 weeks, I wonder if the pregnant guy has given birth already. Those of you who have been following this blog will know whom I'm talking about. Maybe he will be all teary too when he has to leave his young behind and go source for food. As for those of you that do not know, you will have to read my old posts cause I forgot where I mentioned about him too!