Thursday, August 25, 2005

Uninteresting-Feeling Flat-Toner


When I am in a group of people, I sometimes get this nudging pokey-poke feeling that I am a bore and not intelligent enough to be interesting. Outside the comforts of home where people have no choice but to worship me (I am the Queen of the Castle, am I not?) and the busy daily hustle and bustle of the office where people respect me (I hope!) for being a so called “expert” in what I do, I feel like the thoughts in my brain just swirl around in lazy, hazy circles, hence rendering me quite thoughtless and perhaps uninteresting.

Don’t get me wrong. I am not trying to wallow in self-pity, nor am I fishing for supportive compliments from friends whom I know will insist that I am clever and interesting etc. They love me and the thing with love is that, it is not only blind, but it also makes our senses numb and renders us biased towards those we love.

Recently, I was very fortunate to be in the company of some very interesting, clever people. Oh, how I live for such conversation and how I love listening to those people share their experiences in such witty ways. I could’ve sat there all day and listened to everything they had to say. Topics ranged from politics, the “younger generation”, the “London Bombings” etc. I had a few thoughts and opinions of my own to offer but it went all jumbled in mysterious confusing sentences, floating about somewhere in my so-called brain, that letting it out, would cause severe damage to my reputation and bring “nama buruk” to my friend who so kindly brought me with her for this lunch thing. Oh well.

I drove back very content and satisfied that I had such a fulfilling encounter with such intelligent lovely people. And then thought, “wouldn’t it have been better if I could give that back in return?” You know, equally interesting, intriguing, thought provoking conversation?

I suppose, I could give people a run for their money if they talked about offshore construction (but who wants to talk about that??), cleanliness of toilets, raising toddler boys, and blah..blah..blah.. And when digging further, I probably do not contribute much apart from nods and approving laughs and generously smiling, this issue of no-opinion is probably because I don’t feel strongly about much at all!

Say for example, the Anwar Ibrahim issue, his RM4.5m libel suit and all. What do I think about it? I think it’s good that it’s over and done with. The courts have done their job, Anwar may never get his money since you know who is bedridden in hospital and all and that’s that! And now that that’s over, let’s get on with life.

See what I mean?

Digging deeper into this, I know exactly why. It is not that I am not intelligent to the point that I can be uninteresting..(haha!) I do have very interesting thoughts that don’t come out right in words or at least that’s what I think!! Instead they stay in mushy grey matters in my lil zonked brain upstairs. And it is really because I am a “FLAT TONER”, a name that close friends (Jaja was behind this!) from that blessed old school in Johor who have righteously labelled me with!

What my friends have observed about me is this. I don’t feel (or so it appears) and therefore, I appear unopinionated. I do not have much expression and have been claimed to be anti-climax. People could be very excited about stuff, and I would be excited but I'd probably not say the right cheerful exciting stuff and be quite expressionless. People could be very sad, but I would share their sorrows, but not say the right things nor show the right expression. Yes, VERY me!! I am probably too rational, too unbiased that whatever happens, I don't feel much about it?

There is an upside to this Flat-Toner thing though, according to my employers, is that when I am expressionless, it makes me a good person to bring for negotiations. I don't give away much through my expressions, which is supposedly good and which is why I do what I do now.

Why I am thinking about this? Well, because those ladies were inspiring and are what I would want to be in 10-20 years time. I would like to have an audience of young people come talk to Anedra and leave thinking, they had gained something. Maintaining the Flat-Toner Anedra stance is something I have to change. I have to let my guards down once in a while, wake my sleepy senses up and learn to feel more and stronger about things which are important to me, at the very least. Maybe then, I could really give and share something back. Something a Flat-Toner would not do so well eh?


Blogger Maya said...

Jesus Holy Christ Anendra!!!! Come onnnnn...I thought you were fantastic. Sheila and me, we were telling each other, "These kiddos, look at them so smart and worldly and accomplished!" Honest. So wonderful to make your aquaintenance. In all fairness, yes the Charmer from Londra got the most attention. He was absolutely irresistible and so it was understandable. But we shd set him aside and meet one day for some serious girl talk. Yes? :) I would love that!

6:05 AM  
Blogger Ely said...

since i have spoken to u on the phone before. no, u're not a flat toner, u r soft spoken to me. at least softer than i am!

u're wonderful dena!

9:03 AM  
Blogger narfnarf said...

ohmygod...kak anedra, reading this entry sounded like reading something out of my diary! I feel like a 'flat-toner' too most of the time! honestly honestly!!! kita geng! I too, feel like I never have much to say about anything, and sometimes I feel like I speak in monotone. I've been called emotionless many times. Is it a female engineer thing, maybe?

1:32 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

maya: I was on my best behaviour (instructions frm KakTeh!)..normally people try an be polite and stifle yawns in front of me! haha!(I really need to sort out the flat-toner in me seriously!)

But yes, I was quite amused with the Charmer myself!! And, thanks for lunch again, thanks for the great company (like I said, you ladies are very inspiring) and yes, we must do it again, definitely! :)

ely: I've always said that there's a lot I need to learn from YOU!!

narfy darling: Waaaaah!! Yes aaaaah? Kita serupa! Hmmmm.. so what happens when we meet, we'll be yawning at each other?? No lah, I've spoken to you before, you're not all that Flat-toned!! And I can't say it's a female engineer thing cos darling, I am not an engineer but I know a bit here and there!!

We shall discuss this when we meet ok??

5:37 PM  
Blogger torts said...

You r in ur own catagory - very uniquely cool and controlled. Tak lork-lark. I know lots who wish they cud be as cool as u...

And hello makcik - u r inspiring now - and in 10-20 yrs time - u'd be even better.

It is time of the month? ;)

7:17 PM  
Blogger OOD said...

I insist that u are clever and interesting etc. i love u and the thing with love is that, it is not only blind, but it also makes my senses numb and renders me biased towards those i love.

eh, terlebih copy-paste.

11:23 PM  
Blogger OOD said...

hehe, seriously ms charles bronson, you havent pulled the flat-tone bit on me yet. I found you interesting, funny, and clever. I enjoy our conversations (even though come to think of it, we have never really discussd anwar or his millions, or AP for that matter). I enjoy your musings here as well. You are anything but boring.

You are not a makcik yet, already i (a makcik by 5 years) am melopong around you!

11:31 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

ood: i have not pulled a flat-toner on you yet. wait for a while, know me for like 15 years like Jaja has and you'll know what a flat-toner is! and it is I yang dok melopong around you..or could it be that both dok melopong-lopong at each other!

I lap you too lah, you know that doncha??

so bila mau discuss anwar ibrahim, rafidah, proton and AP ni?? Err..can we selit osso more important current issues like Normala/Datuk Azmi and Azrinaz as well??

11:39 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

torts: beneath the uniquely cool whatever-whatever is just blobs of unclear stuff. The Ice Queen-Cool-Anedra is just a cover up for the uninteresting-ness in me!

and darling, it ain't time of the month..or is it already????????

11:41 PM  
Blogger aalborg said...

Not wanting to confess to being a flat-toner, I think the flat-toner-er in me comes out in company of people like my husband's circle, who do not know what to talk about unless it's mobile communications, symbion, 4G, bla bla bla. They never know how to pass or accept the ball, and the worst part is...waiting for the next question: So, how's work? How's the wife/mother/father/child? Why did you come here then? Hiya...what else to ask lah after this????

1:30 AM  
Blogger faux diamante said...

oh u r not a flat toner what so ever. I am pretty sure I am not tone deaf. And my phonebill can attest to that. Flat toners don't hog the phone hor?

3:50 AM  
Blogger Ms.B said...

I may not have spoken to you on the phone like so many others on this comments list have (hehehe) BUT you certainly don't come across as a flat-toner! Dunnolah, mebbe if I met you personally, well .. :)

But even then!! What's wrong with that? I think it's unique!! And if it's what makes you, YOU, then ok what?

Nobody's hating you for it, and if my guesses are correct, people around you love you for it!!

So rejoice in your uniqueness, milady!! :)

Oh, HELLO from the highlands!!! *Tak nak balik, boleh tak???*

4:33 AM  
Blogger anedra said...

ailin: tell me about it!! I think after I got married the best of the flat-toner in me really came out. I am now mastering the art of flat-toned "hmmmmph" which supposedly means yes or no in a positive or negative way, depending on how the listener (which is hubby) looks at it! Also, must say that without expression. Better! How lah.

nazrah: cakap dengan Boss tak leh lah flat-toned! hehehe!!

Blabs: am turning green as I write this. Eksyen ya you?? Are ya having fun then?? wait till u see me then u'll know how flat-toned I am.

5:02 AM  
Blogger Jane Sunshine said...

Hello! sound so bubbly and interesting! As long as you are yourself, I am sure that you will always be fine. I used to fidget and wonder what people thought about me many years ago. It took me a long time to close the door and ask myself what I thought of people instead.

1:43 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

j.s: u'r absolutely right. we shouldn't let what people think of us affect us so. For me, I just feel, that if I am "forever" flat-toned and expressionless, the things I could share with people would not come out as strong and as effectively! if that makes any sense lah! hahaha!

6:39 PM  
Anonymous atn said...

i wish i can be a flat-toner. my face is so expressive (over, some of my frens say) that people draw conclusions abt what i think, letih tau. but what to do, my face arredi like this. see what u think when u meet me. (set la huh?)

huh over animated depa kata

9:26 PM  
Blogger Kak Teh said...

dear all, believe me..I know what anedra means. been searchinf for a word for it. You tell her some earth shaking, rolling on the floor kind of joke - she says: ye ke?

1:48 AM  
Anonymous atiza said...

you are not flat-toned la have a sing song voice and a very interesting person to have conversation with (work or otherwise)..

2:45 AM  
Blogger AuntyN said...

Flat toner ke? In that case it would be an interesing met with me. A high pitch, makcik. Myhubby always tease that he can hear me from miles away esp/ when I am excited over somehing. I think me and tenah shud never be in the same room less we would try yo out do each other..

5:07 AM  
Blogger Uja said...

Cik Anedra,

You have NO idea what power you have (*repeat macam rekod rosak*).

Read 'The Power of Muka Toye' in my blog - and you will know ....;) He he he

7:34 PM  
Blogger anedra said...

atn: oh, you don't know what u'r asking for!! keep up the animation and expressions, it's much better I'm sure. In any case, keep em till we meet (SET!!!!)..then I'll tell ya!

kakteh: hehehe!! that's why u'r my makteh! you KNOW!! and now u know that it's called FLAT-TONERism!

EVERYBODY-listen to KAKTEH! She knows!

atiza: wait till the second conversation darling. then maybe u'll see what I mean! haha.

auntyn: no, you and tenah should definitely meet!! mesti havoc gila! and when things get out of hand, call me in..I'll even things out! :) ...and I have to meet you to claim a mee udang meal!

uja: hehehe! I've read that posting of yours a while before. Now that u've mentioned it, i'll be walking all over the place thinking and feeling like an ostrich!! All yr fault. ;p

9:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


wonder whereis jaja now?


p/s norzie dah pregnant ker?

7:46 PM  

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