The Dirty 30s Club.

It’s got nothing to do with an X-rated website featuring pictures of half-naked (or naked) women, a place where men go to in their alone time, in their privacy, to get their share of eroticism.

It’s not a nightclub, nor is it a radio station that plays music that only a group of people understand. Music that you can’t necessarily relate to. Music that has a lot of technology in it, but not a lot of soul.

It isn’t an exclusive club where you pay good money to use the cigar lounge, sit in plush chairs, and drink scotch or whisky while rubbing shoulders with the titans of the industry. It’s not a club that has a mascot of its own, an anthem to be proud of or a smart uniform that would stop traffic and turn heads.

There’s nothing really ‘dirty’ about this club. Nor is there anything really fancy about it either. But it is all about being in your 30s – all the years within in, before it and after it.

It had all started as an ode – as poetic justice about advancing towards the 3-0. It had all started with a note I posted on my facebook page called ‘The Dirty Thirties Club’. In that note, I wrote about my journey through my twenties, my ugly-duckling-turned-swan metamorphosis, my identity crisis, my search for meaning, my path to self discovery and all the confusion, anger, apathy, fear, doubt and suffering that came as part of the package.

My brother had posted a comment in response to that note. In it, he wrote ‘You should start a blog.’ I thought to myself, I have so many of them already. And it was in that moment, that The Dirty 30s Club was born. In that moment, I looked back on my twenties and realized that the turmoil that was my life showed up in the way I shared and connected with others through my blogs. I had kept a number of them – too many in fact – scattered all across the web. Some I shared publicly with others, others I kept privately to myself. I write often to a few, and sporadically to the rest. I am passionate about one or two of them, but feel aloof and lackluster towards the others. And if my blogs were anything like my life then, they were these – lack of focus, haphazard, chaotic, confused.

When I look back on all those years in my twenties, of finding my own voice, of sharing my stories and connecting with people, I realized that I was always just renting space on someone else’s real estate. I was bound by whatever the terms and conditions were of that particular lease and always felt a niggling fear at the back of my mind, that one day, I might wake up to find that the landlord would find something offensive about what I had written and would take all that had belonged to me – words, commas, hyphens and full stops – and evict me from its property without a backward glance.

So when the idea for The Dirty 30s Club formed in my mind, I thought this was it – metaphorically, this is what my 30s would be about – bringing people from all walks of life, of all ages, race and creed, together in a place that I can call my own. Whether as a means of escapism from the grunt of daily life, a place to connect with other people or as a source of inspiration, I hope that this place – this Club – will be your home, as much as it is mine, in the jungle that is virtual reality. I hope that you will be honest in your sharing, I hope that you will be respectful of others, but most of all, I hope that you are honest and respectful of yourself, and remain true to who you are in everything you do.

So, Ladies and Gentlemen, without further ado, I welcome you to The Dirty 30s Club.

Founder and President,

Chiao Kee Lim

August 9th, 2010.

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