It's a good thing I'm a Libran, with a natural instinct for tact and diplomacy, because ever since the ink dried on my parents' divorce papers I have been sandwiched between them as they continue to lock horns. Things began to go wrong when I was in primary school. I remember my mum and dad, already separated, on the phone fighting over who would get my annual report card from my teacher. An issue as trivial as who would pick me up from school on a rainy day usually ended in disaster. They would forget the reason they had called in the first place, start arguing and hang up. Neither would remember to collect me and I'd have to make my own way home, arriving soaking wet. As I've grown older, it has become increasingly hard to mediate between the two, especially as other people tend to get involved as well. Invitations from family and friends are a real headache. Often I am faced with issues like how to make sure my parents won't make fools of themselves in front of everybody at my cousin's birthday party or how to stop them arguing during a get-together at our next door neighbour's apartment. I am pretty much used to the feeling of being trapped between them and have mastered the skill of lying to strangers. But there are still times when it's more than just a case of blushing and sweating. When my parents do meet up it is like a cosmic explosion. Once, when they came across each other at a dim sum restaurant gathering, they aired all their grievances, leaving the onlookers embarrassed and uncomfortable. I just wanted to dig a hole and hide. To avoid such embarrassment, I reduce the chance of them bumping into each other by hiding facts from them. And, unfortunately, my younger sister has become my accomplice in the pre-emptive lying game. We shuffle our schedules to meet up with relatives and friends without either mum or dad - depending on the function. Of course it looks odd attending family get-togethers over the Lunar New Year and the Mid-Autumn Festival without the full team. However, most people believe the excuses we invent - like it's a new trend for a modern family to be as flexible as possible and we can't always be together. But it's not always possible to hide my whereabouts. When I recently returned from a holiday in the United States, the news of my arrival got leaked and my father called the airline to get the details of my flight, before dutifully waiting for me at the airport as if he was a member of the paparazzi. With exits A and B of the arrival halls at Chek Lap Kok only a couple of metres apart, it was hard to avoid my mother who was also there to meet me. I nearly tripped over my luggage when I spotted them: it was my recurring nightmare. How would they react? Would they make a scene? Would airport security pop up from all corners to calm them down? Before things went haywire, I just wanted to scream: 'If you guys can't forgive each other, just forget about it!' Luckily there were no public fireworks; they just exchanged glances before my mother discreetly faded into the background.