Thursday, December 27, 2007

2007 IN A NUTSHELL

. yThe curtain pullers of 2007 are standing by the sides, holding onto the ropes just waiting for the year to end so that they can move on with their lives after the curtain falls, while many of us are still wondering where did all the time go. Wasn't it just the other day when we ushered in 2007 amidst fireworks, auld lang syne and a crazy countdown?

So, what did 2007 do for us?

It was a strange year, as it moved at an abnormal pace. Way too fast to do anyone much good, way too fast to be remembered as one of those good years by people who look at each year as a passing phase. So fast that I can't even remember if a certain incident happened in this year or the year before!

Things I learnt in 2007:
1. Adrenaline can be your best friend
2. Fingers are not heat proof
3. Coffee is addictive (after many years!)
4. Previous year's claims of insomnia were exaggerated. 2007 was the real deal
5. Vista can be a pain, but you get used to it. In fact you can get used to anything
6. My watch dislikes our southern neighbour
7. I'm still ridiculously unlucky in many aspects
8. But I'm not so unlucky in others
9. My funny bone has gone mad.
10. You can pick yourself up even after facing unimaginable adversaries
11. Reading an e-book is not as fun as the real thing
12. Assholes will forever remain assholes
13. Contact lenses behave better in cold weather
14. Those so called durable water bottles only have a lifespan of 1 year

2007 was the busiest year ever in my life, because the busy days were stretched out throughout the year, unlike other times when the busy conditions escalated to unimaginable heights for short durations and then retreated into oblivion. This was also the year when I found 2 strands of grey hair (within a few months of each other, but nevertheless alarming enough for it to find its way into this post as I personally know someone who had all his hair turn grey overnight, and this person was in his early 30s!) And for the second time (first attempt was in 2005), attempts to change my hair colour (this time, it was Power Ruby Red) failed miserably, the end result being one ruined t-shirt and hair almost as black as it was before.

This was the year of reunions... I met a few old school friends whom I've not seen for about 10 years, and got reunited in person with 2 childhood friends after about 15 years of not seeing each other. This was also the year for weddings... I've been to so many that I actually may have to count them with my fingers before knowing the exact number.

Bad year for music, not so bad year for movies, and a pretty ok year for tv - cable, not local! Interesting political developments (almost!), strange year for haircuts (bangs?) - the one and only year I didn't go and cut it really short because it was too hot or because I was bored. Started on the treadmill as opposed to the track at the stadium, went out of the country twice for work purposes. A great year for number of books read. Got a rejection letter from a story writing competition and they couldn't even tell me what they didn't like about my story due to overwhelming response (from contestants, not my story).

Lousy year for migraines and I realised that my wisdom tooth's erratic growth spurt is bothersome.

Worst part of the year: 2nd and 3rd quarter, whereas the 1st quarter and 4th quarter were pretty allright. I guess in the end (and this is like really the end...) I'd give the year 2007 a 6 out of 10 which makes it a pretty good year seeing that my once formerly optimistic demenour has been replaced by cynicism.

What's your take on 2007?

Sunday, December 16, 2007

JAPAN - PART 3

Monday, the first day of training was pretty uneventful… here we found out what damage literal translation can do – make you laugh till you can’t laugh anymore!
Anyway, after 5 pm, we found ourselves activity-less, so after dinner which we had at 6:30 pm, we decided to head out to the local area to check out their version of Carrefour and visit the 100 yen shop.
Tuesday night dinner –
The training division decided to have a dinner together for all the trainers and trainees that night. We had a chance to dine the proper Japanese way on the low table. The food was amazing. We had steamboat, salmon, octopus (this is a must try!) and a variety of mushrooms.
The low table where we had our dinner
After eating we were ‘forced’ to participate in some games like to use 3 matchsticks to make 4 triangles, or try to ‘push’ off a 1000 yen note of the table without actually touching it, and the local version of rock, paper, scissors. Next, each country had to go out and sing a song. Why????
The trainers rocked the house by singing Sukiyaki. Those from Thailand sang a song by the name Rayong and did a some very graceful traditional dance moves. The solo Singaporean sang a Mandarin song beautifully. The Indonesians sang a traditional children’s Indonesian song, and we from Malaysia sang Rasa Sayang… it’s something we learned in pre-school too :)
Wednesday
More training –
At night we checked out Midori, the electrical appliance store. Playstations are way cheaper over there than in Malaysia, but we couldn’t get anyone to tell us if it could be played in other countries. I got myself a cool ipod protector and a pair of Sony earphones for my sister.
Thursday
More training and news that the participants from China and Taiwan who attended this same training a week ago had 5 out of 12 people fail the test. So of course Thursday night was spent revising the notes and trying to figure out the type of questions that may be asked. Most of us were particularly worried about the fact that we may not understand what the questions actually want because of the translation issues.
Friday
Turns out that the translation of the questions was unimaginably incomprehensible (It was done using software that couldn’t seem to do its job) so the test was cancelled halfway since all of us kept asking what this or that word meant one after another :) Instead, we had a discussion on the questions.

That day, after the training we had dinner at one of the restaurants that served teppanyaki style food. Teppanyaki is basically a grill/hot pan where you kind of cook the food yourself. Dinner ended pretty early, and we ended up at the dormitory hall for another small (unofficial) party where lots of craziness occurred.
Cooking on the grill

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

JAPAN PART 2

Day 1 – touchdown and some adventures in Osaka
We touched down at Kansai International at 7 am Japanese time on Sunday morning after having a ridiculous attempt at sleeping in the plane.
“Would you like to have Malaysian fried rice with chicken satay or the omelette with potatoes for breakfast?” asks a very chirpy flight attendant at 4 am. Groggily I say I would prefer the fried rice. Anyway, who on earth (besides people who really have to) has breakfast at 4 am?
We waited a bit for other trainees from other countries, got to know each other and took a long ride in an airport limo bus to the train station nearest to where we were supposed to stay throughout our training… a boarding house also known as a dormitory. The rooms were really nice and spacious, and at that moment the *sun was actually shining into the room and the effect was just lovely!
The room without the sun... The floor is lined with Katami - (something like a mat that helps keep off the cold)
While some of them slept (catching up on lost sleep from the night before) my colleague (Hud) and **another trainee (Lor) from the company next door and I took an ½ hour walk to the train station. We split ways at the train station where Hud and I went on towards Universal Studios Japan (USJ) and Lor went to meet his brother.
USJ was a place full of sights that needed to be photographed – seeing that we don’t have one in Malaysia. We skipped We saw this tiny monkey right outside Universal Studios
the rides as we lacked time (it was 3 pm by the time we went in, and it gets dark by around 5 pm) and walked into every street that we could and stopped by to check out several places. I felt as though I was transported into many different movie scenes along those roads.
One of the streets in USJ
Later that night we had dinner with our advisor at a sushi bar where he recommended the good stuff to us. Eel (or Unagi) is simply excellent!
On a totally different note, all forms of communication were unavailable as non-Japanese phone models (as well as non-3G phones and SIM cards) were not able to perform roaming services as they do in other countries. Just my luck… even the international call card that I purchased was unusable because no one knew how to use it to make calls!
As for internet access, that’s a whole different story!
*sun – you see the sun shining brightly and you’re glad, alas, it’s all for show. Even when there is no wind blowing at you, you still feel the cold creeping in.
** this other trainee (Lor) is also from Malaysia – but from our sister company and would end up being labeled as one of the funniest guys we have ever met (despite him insisting that he’s actually a very serious person…. Ha! Ha!)
To be continued….

Saturday, December 08, 2007

JAPAN - PART 1

It’s been almost a week since I touched down in Malaysia after a about a week of living in and a 6 hour flight from Japan. What’s really funny was I thought I found back my muse in Japan, especially when we were on the limousine bus from the airport to the nearest train station. There was this really long bridge, and the view from the bus was simply magnificent… the streets unbelievably clean and sea birds perched at the sides of the bridge as though they were waiting for an unseen sign to fly away together. Alas, I lost it again on the flight back when I forced myself to watch 3 in-flight movies back to back (slept through ¾ of 1 of them, though… hehehe)
Our cups of coffee
The Training….
Anyway, the main reason I went there was to train about static electricity, which seems to be one of the major causes of workplace related accidents, and we were there to be trained on proper prevention methods. Despite the serious tone of the training, we had coffee breaks every hour or so. In those five days, I had turned into a black coffee junkie (back home, I must have it with creamer)
None of the trainees speak fluent Japanese… most of us can handle simple conversations regarding directions, or ordering food, or maybe even describing ourselves, but when it comes to technical matters, we completely lack the language skills to comprehend whatever’s being said… which led to many hilarious situations. What my colleague and I thought would be the most boring thing that could happen to us ended up being one of the most exciting ever!
This is the route we took everyday for training

Getting around…
We walk. A lot….
Every morning after breakfast, we gather round at 7:45 to walk to the training centre together… In the cold crisp mornings, and with the company of so many different people from all the different countries, it’s quite a bit of fun. With the temperature being pretty cool and all, you don’t tire easily (unlike here in Malaysia, where the smog will most probably kill you first) And at 5 pm, we walk back to the dorm together…. Pretty much like school kids :)
The streets are safe, and the cars and vans give way to pedestrians (wherever there are no special crossing places such as small streets)… If such a thing happened over here, we’d probably have pigs flying around. And there are special walkways for people who walk (which are shared by cyclists who are equally as polite on the road)
Other than that, there are busses and trains and when you get the hang of the train loops, intercity travelling is a breeze. Even when you don’t know how to read Japanese :D
To be continued….

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

NIHON e IKIMASU

Yeah, that's right... I'm going to Japan! (for work purposes)

I kinda found out about this a few months ago, but I never said anything because I was too afraid that it would be cancelled at the last minute or something equally as bad. Now that it's just 3 days away, I feel that it may be safe to say it out aloud.

"I'm going to Japan"

I can't described how thrilled I am, or how much of a nervous wreck I am, right now... I still haven't packed anything yet, and last I heard, is that the temperature has dropped really low in the recent days, which means I have to get a hat/cap to protect my head. Today's temperature is about 13 C (55 F) but it could go as low as 4 C (40 F) (I'm used to 27 C (80 F) and above... )

And this is also one of the reasons why I've sort of slacked in blogging - the other reasons being procrastination, and 'ahem' other interests...

See you all when I get back!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

PATTERNS ON SMOKE STACKS AND SAVING THE TREES

Have I ever mentioned that I love thunderstorms? As I'm writing this out - on paper using a pencil while wondering why the temperature of this thing I'm looking at is higher than it's ever supposed to be, a thunderstorm is happening out there, the rain pouring down while I'm indoors, protected from the cold wind - a great arrangement if I may say so myself.

Lightning is flashing across the sky and smoke stacks from the factory next door is creating patterns in the *clouds

So, I've noticed lately that I've lost my ability to allow thoughts that form in my head to be directly transferred through electronic means via the keyboard. Instead, I find writing it down the old fashioned way seems to be much better, especially in a moving train as you see the scenery around you change as you move from station to station. Now, that is a pretty big problem for me, seeing that I only take the train once every 2 to 3 months or so... (sigh) and so all those thoughts remain, scattered through the grey matter, being complete pests, never resting and finally making their way to the graveyard for ideas.

Anyway, what's with the sudden inspiration on paper (I might want to write on an old fashioned table with a quill next!!!!) I wonder? What about the trees? Who's gonna plant a new tree for every tree that sacrificed itself for the paper we use?

Oh well, I found this poem scribbled on one of my reports - written somewhere in September, and wondered what could have inspired such a thing!

Maggots in the drain,
Crying in the rain,
Writhing in pain,
Alas! There's nothing to gain.

Note to myself: Terra, stop being a pracrastinator and start blogging properly again!

* About 30 feet above the ground

Friday, November 02, 2007

FOR THOSE ABOUT TO EXERCISE

Do you think you're not fit enough?

Well, there's a new blog in town, created by Aunty Helpful Dictator as a support network for those who need to up their fitness level. Basically it's about attempts to go and join the fitness bandwagon. She welcomes contributors, so if you're interested to put in your 3lbs of thoughts in it, just comment in her blog with your e-mail address.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

JUST A WHOLE LOT OF RANDOM STUFF

Well, it's been a busy week and what seems to me like the longest week ever, what with working for 14 to 15 hours on Monday and Tuesday. I'm actually very very tired and this might also have been contributed by the severe lack of sleep and a brand new addiction throwing pillows at and casting spells on friends with this thing called Facebook (all this after the long hours in front of the computer and mentally exhausting discussions with fellow colleagues!)

Anyway, I had a lot of stuff in my mind, you know, the kind of posts that you plan to post about (after all I'm 70% addicted to blogging as a test I took says), but never actually sat down and typed them out. Why does it always seem nicer in our minds as opposed to on the screen?

About two weekends ago, I got to meet some really old childhood family friends. We had lost contact because we were too young back then to maintain contact, and they had also moved over to Belgium so meeting up after we got in touch again took awhile... And the thing that bothers be teribbly is how we were all very very quite despite the fact that when were kids, we had (allegedly) plotted the murder of one of my uncles! Of course we spoke, and it seemed all normal... but nevertheless there was an intangible awkwardness towards the whole situation.

This morning, I heard Hey There Delilah (not the first time) on the radio, and I couldn't help feeling sad. It's very difficult to say why exactly... was it because of the song? (Although it has nothing to do with my life at the moment) There's just this overwhelming feeling of something which I can't explain.

I need to write more as it is wonderfully therapeutic at the moment... but then my break time is almost over and I need to get some stuff done...

Thursday, October 18, 2007

IF YOU BELIEVE, THEY PUT A MAN ON THE MOON

They did... Back in 1969

So, our country's first astronaut (or spaceflight participant- ahem) - known locally as angkasawan finally went up to space in the swanky Soyuz TMA11 at 9:23 pm local time last Wednesday. In the midst of all the drama surrounding the excitement of sending off our first man to space almost 40 years after the first man landed on the moon, I had missed out on what he was actually supposed to do up there... was it to make 'pulled tea'? or make "roti canai" a type of bread which you have to toss into the air (so that it collects all the dirt from the atmosphere hence making it yummier) - as you can see, Malaysians are obsessed with food! Then there was talk about him playing batu seremban in zero gravity, and trying to spin the top....

It baffles me... the man is a doctor. Maybe he could make pulled tea... but tossing a roti canai, or spinning a top - you need some experience. But what's the point? It's not like we built our own spaceship from scratch... and it involved tonnes of taxpayers money just to send a man to space. Wouldn't it be better if we tried developing the technology instead?

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

HAPPY DAYS?

I just noticed this evening that you can be perfectly content for a maximum of three days without any worries... that is if you chuck all the worries at the back of your head, eat cornflakes sans milk at 10 pm (don't ask why), have a reunion with some really really old pals, sleep very very late at night after half scaring yourself to death with some scary stuff, and listening to your favourite songs (all in no particular order)

And then reality sets in at an unexpected moment. You don't have a plan... where do you see yourself in a year? or two? No plan at all!

Oh crap! I'm panicking!!!! Why now?

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

THE BLOGGYAWARD REVIEW

Quite some time back, out of curiosity, I submitted this blog to be reviewed by Bloggy Awards.

Basically, what they do is they rate your blog based on several categories such as visual asthetics, user friendliness, reading enjoyment, useful info as well as an overall experience of your blog.

It's quite interesting actually, to know how your blog is perceived by others. For instance now I know I need to spruce up the blog with a little bit more visuals. Add some colour, perhaps...

Anyway, if you're interested, the review can be viewed here: http://www.bloggyaward.com/bloggyaward/the-secret-backup-blog/

Monday, October 08, 2007

THE DEMISE OF THE SUBTLE ART OF FLIRTING

It was as normal as any normal Sunday morning (circa 1 am) could be. Sleep deprived and yet unable to sleep, I was switching windows like a crazed maniac, playing Sudoku and crossword puzzles at the same time, stalking blogs and fooling around with a new project.
An inactive friendster tab lay undisturbed until I thought that I might as well close it. The laptop touchpad being what it is and my clumsy fingers being what they are I ended up on my messages page. There was something new there, I read it with eyes wide open, started laughing madly at the laptop, got somewhat freaked out and closed up everything. Haunted cyberspace?
Here's the e-mail, copied and pasted word for word. Only the e-mail address of the sender was deleted.

Hello There,

How are you my dear lady?. How's your life getting on? Hows your career, you're your job and everything at work? Is everybody treating you well? I really hope that your job gives you satisfaction and will open-up new avenues. How's your family? Hope that they are great too, just like the ay you look. I saw your profile and would love to get to know you better in person. Am working as a secondary teacher in Brunei. Im off course a Malaysian, you don't have to worry about that ya. So please, I would be extremely happy to have your private email in order for us to initiate contact and we'll see what happens thereafter. So my lady, please have your meals on time, take fruits and lots of water daily. Have vegetables and you must have good rest always. Drive safely take good care of yourself, stay free, be happy, do things you love and bye bye. Please mail me at (insert e-mail address)

Here's my imagined reply
If I was a lady, I'm sure I'd be fine... but even if I wasn't (a lady - and especially NOT your dear lady) I'm still fine. I hope.
As for your questions, here are the answers:
Q:How's your life getting on?
A:Great. But even if it wasn't I don't think I'll talk about it to a stranger unless they were a psychiatrist
Q:Hows your career, you're your job and everything at work?
A: Hmmmm... evidently you didn't read my profile before typing this out, didn't you?
Q:Is everybody treating you well?

A: For me to know - for no one else to find out. Thank you.
I know I make conclusions rather haphazardly, but I suppose it's quite safe to say that you are very career minded. For me, it's just an avenue to make $$$. Of course if you enjoy the job it's all the better.
Q:How's your family?
A: Do you know them? I doubt it, but since you asked, they're fine. If they read this, they're definitely going to laugh their heads off. We all have damaged funny bones.

Yes, I figured out that you had seen my profile, hence this e-mail. But what puzzles me is how you managed to send me the e-mail. As far as I can remember I had closed my messaging options up to 2nd degree friends. You, as far as i can tell are not in the network. Friendster has quite a bit of explaining to do.
So. you're in Brunei, eh? My friend once worked there. And seriously it doesn't matter whether you're Malaysian or Argentinian. So you don't have to worry about me worrying about that! Besides, what's wrong about not being Malaysian?
About e-mail addresses and such. It's not a particular habit of mine to go around giving my e-mail address to all and sundry. Seriously. And I'm also afraid that I'm not particularly interested in initiating contact, or seeing how it turns out. I'm a terrible e-mailer. I write a whole bunch of rubbish most of the time. You might want to poke yourself with the blunt edge of a spatula after reading what I write.
Oh well, what can I say? Thank you for the advice that I get from my mom (or Baz Luhrman) all the time? Oh, by the way... let me guess... your e-mail is a template, isn't it?
regards,
The Cynical Misanthrope
PS:
#1 - I have chosen to ignore the message in real life.
#2 - I checked my Friendster settings and apparently both my profile and message service was open to everyone - which probably explains the sudden influx of e-mails. Managed to fix it to 2nd degree friends once again.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

MORONS BUILT THIS CITY

So, I've recently resorted to the company of a scrunched up packet of Fisherman's Friend - the amazing sore throat lozenges that seem to do their work just fine, although the sore throat (or what remains of it) has given me what friends from school use to call a 'sexy voice' hahaha...


Anyway, last Wednesday, when I was reaching my house, I saw a big difference on the main road. They resurfaced the road with new tar (which I'm afraid will start displaying potholes within the month given the high volume traffic) and painted new lines. But it's not the evenings that bother me.


On the Thursday morning as I was rushing out, I noticed that I could not get out into the main road because of the new lines they made the day before. The road had been made into a double lane that stretched out a few metres ahead of my exit and cars were moving in twos (and sometimes threes) without giving a tuppence about those of us waiting to get out. That is until a man in a Pajero stopped and signaled me to move first. What a kind person!


So yeah, in the name of development, we (the people of my neighbourhood) have been ignored. Rather mercilessly. I really do hope that they have a better plan than that - like a new traffic light or something, because if this situation remains, things will just get worse. Some cars might start spiderlike spindly legs just to move forward. I wish!


Actually i should be thinking of Starship's We Built This City. But I like this one better...




THE WORLD I KNOW - COLLECTIVE SOUL
Has our conscience shown?
Has the sweet breeze blown?
Has all the kindness gone?
Hope still lingers on.
I drink myself of newfound pity
Sitting alone in new york city
And I dont know why.


Are we listening to hyms of offering?
Have we eyes to see that love is gathering?
All the words that Ive been reading
Have now started the act of bleeding into one.


So I walk up on high
And I step to the edge
To see my world below.
And I laugh at myself
As the years roll down.
cause its the world I know.
Its the world I know.

Friday, October 05, 2007

FREE BURMA

Free Burma!

It may be a day late, but it's never too late to support a good cause

Saturday, September 29, 2007

THE CHICK WHO KILLED AFRICA

Growing up in the 80’s I was constantly exposed to music of that era, especially when I hung out at grandma’s. It was fun while it lasted, but then life dictated that school was a must, and well music took a backseat while I concentrated on adding and subtracting, synonyms, homonyms and antonyms, as well as trying to figure out which countries had earthquakes and why, or how photosynthesis occurred.

It was when I was in my teens where I got reacquainted with music, but this time it was even better, because I had information about the titles as well as the artistes.

Recently, a relatively new singer came up with a new song, which actually wasn’t entirely new. In fact, she sampled the intro from Africa by Toto, which coincidentally happens to be one of my favourite songs ever.

Had she only covered the song, it wouldn’t have been half as bad, but she took the liberty to include her own mushy lyrics while poor old Toto sang in the background. Ugh! And she’s not the first, either… some time back, another singer had the gall to sample “The Lonely Goatherd” from The Sound of Music. 


If Video Killed the Radio Star, then Sampling surely killed the Classics (used very loosely and may not be similar to everyone else's definition of classics)

PS: No offense intended to the fans of the (vaguely) mentioned singers

Thursday, September 27, 2007

PLASTIC CARDS AND SMART CHIPS

There's this piece of document we all lug around and hold on to for dear life. Although we can very well say that we are so and so (insert name here) but if the document doesn't say so, then we might as well dig a hole and bury ourselves in it. This so called document is none other than a normal sized card that fits snugly into some wallets which goes by the name MyKad.
I was watching the local news last night (surprisingly there was no hailstorm that followed - not in this part of the world anyway) on channel no 7 which ceased making us feel good with their self righteous, moral police wannabe ways. They had a poll seeking the opinion of the general public about the new rate for replacing MyKad. I'm taking the liberty to make assumptions as I could not obtain the full story - I seriously lack the time to do proper research.
All I know, is there might be an increase. And it makes you wonder if the people in charge of suggesting this idea actually think that people lose their MyKads on purpose. Hence the need to replace it.
"Oh, this photograph is so bloody ugly. Maybe I'll just throw this MyKad out of the window. Then I can get a new one. Woo hoo!"

or

"Sheesh, they locked me out, those gits. Hmmm... I think I'll use my MyKad to perform some McGyver like maneouver"

5 minutes later

"Oops! It's broken"

Yeah, that's what most probably crosses the minds of the people who are in charge. Undeniably, almost everyone's photo on their respective MyKads have an uncanny resemblance to a jaundiced, stretched out version of themselves. But no one in their right mind would toss it out just because...
The fact is I had two of my previous ICs (the older version of MyKad and stands for Identity Card - photo equally ugly) stolen by *pick pockets within 3 years and it was not exactly my fault. And yet i had to report about it at the police station, and apply for a new IC and on top of that pay a fine. Did anyone catch the culprit? No... it (gender unknown) is most probably still moving around doing greater pick pocketing - maybe on a rich Datin or something.
As for the missing IC, of course I missed it. It was with me from 12 until a few days short of my 19th birthday. But I think my then roomate and another friend missed it even more because it used to serve as a depressive mood relieving thingy - something to do with the photo :)
Yeah, so those people at NRD should think like about a few more hundred times before they decide to increase the fee. Maybe they can do it after they've nabbed about like say 1000 pick pockets in about 3 months?
*a very general term. the first case had the person actually coming into our dorm room in the dead of the night and taking whatever was in reach. In the second case, my backpack - which was on my back was opened without me realising. very slick, indeed.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

THE GRADUATE - A REVIEW


Within reach was a site that offered movies, a sister who recommended a great movie, Vista behaving itself, and some spare time.
Set in 1967, long before I saw daylight and based on a book written by Charles Webb, we see a clueless young man, Benjamin, who had just recently graduated from college, played perfectly by Dustin Hoffman. For the viewer, his friends only seem to be his parents friends, and he doesn't seem very excited to see them or have proper conversations with them at a party which was organised for him. He then gets cornered by a Mrs. Robinson played by Anne Bancroft, an stylish woman with class who seduces him. Or so he thinks.
The dialogue is witty throughout the movie, but not in a trying too hard way. The actors are all really good, and they seem to just be the characters. One memorable scene is at the hotel, where he's actually planning to have an affair with Mrs Robinson...
Hotel clerk: Are you here for an affair, sir?
Benjamin:??? (Guilty look flashes across his face)
He then proceeds to book a room, gets a single room, and signs himself under an assumed name. Then he calls Mrs Robinson, explains to her about the hotel clerk being suspicious, thanks her for doing this for him and asks her to come up to the room 5 minutes later.

Now Mrs Robinson is one of the best characters I've ever seen. Not only is she gorgeous, her crisp clear voice makes anyone who listens to her obey her at once. She domineers Benjamin in a way that is extremely hilarious - not in a slapstick way, of course. On the other hand, Benjamin is clueless, lacks ambition, and plans to not have any plans.
Things take a terrible turn when he is forced to take the Robinson's daughter on a date and proceeds to fall in love with her.
The soundtrack of the movie consists mainly of music by Simon & Garfunkel. Three main songs are played throughout the movie, whenever the characters are not really talking to show the passage of time. Tunes like Sound of Silence, Mrs Robinson and Scarborough Fair are intermittently scattered throughout the movie. Personally I never knew that the Sound of Silence was that old.
All in all, the movie is wonderfully enjoyable, and the final scene is one that you're never likely to forget in a hurry!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

THE DREAM...

It was strange waking up today to the annoying alarm.

I have been having a few dreams the last few days, and they all seem to be interconnected, like chapters in a book that you take your time to read. It's filled with characters from my real life that don't know each other, but the places we go to are sometimes familiar, and at other times seem to be a combination of several places.

In this particular dream, I was with a colleague of mine, and apparently it was Thursday (in real life , I would be waking up to Wednesday) and it was also the day for sports... (We're supposed to pick our favourite sport, and after work at 5:30, we head out to the fields and play) and I was wondering how come I was not aware of this new fun idea. (Once again, in reality this is simply impossible!)

Anyway, this colleague and I were in a stationary car, and I was looking at this tree which fell down across a hill which looked like the hill where our training centre was when I went down to S'pore a few months back. (At this point, the colleague moved away from view)

Some time later, a lanky guy (whom I've never seen before in real life, but was someone I knew in the dream as an essay writing competition winner - we took part in a competition a few days before that) moved forward, and stopped where I was, I pretended to sleep, but he still hung around, and I said "The tree fell down" and pointed towards the tree. He moved closer and we started talking through the window. Weird!

And then, suddenly while we were talking he holds my hand and I suddenly felt all warm and fuzzy (I am seriously blushing as I'm typing this out) Hmmm... looks like I've met the guy of my dreams through a dream! Ha! Ha! But then, there's suddenly a lot of noise, and he says he has to go... there's a parade going on the road we were on, and as he left, his hand fell off at the wrist. I looked at the hand which was still in mine in horror, and realised that it was like a glove and could not possibly be his real hand.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

CHASING WILD GEESE

Hehehe... this story was funny when it first happened, which was somewhere around last Thursday, technically the last day of the month (31st was a public holiday) and of course everyone was running around because it was the last day, etc

There's a whole new meaning to the wild goose chase.
Imagine a stationary item,... a whole bunch of people are on the lookout for the said item. Besides, it's like 200kgs which is more or less 440 pounds of liquid weight. It can't just vanish like that without a trace, but that's what seemed to have happened.

We covered the 3 storeys in turns, pausing at every container looking for the elusive one. We searched the waste disposal area, if some smart aleck had decided to chuck it there. 6 people and no results. The sad part is that it takes about 3 days to make the item we were looking for. 3 long days and plenty of hassle. Nothing is easy.... yeah.
In the end, the last person to handle the item was called. He was asked a few questions and was requested to look for the item. Within 1/2 an hour, he found it. Hidden under a pile of other containers. He found it because he recognised how it looked. Some paint splatters or stuff like that. In the end we were all ecstatic, albeit feeling silly that no one had found it earlier!

Friday, August 17, 2007

INSOMNIA ATTACT

When you talk about insomnia, you think of haggard looking folks with their swollen eyes and tired faces trudging along to the routine of their daily lives except when it comes to the time to sleep. Try as they might, they just cannot fall asleep and build castles in the sky or run away from monsters of the world (which when you come to think of it, is not that bad at all)

I used to face the problem at a certain time, when my mind will be racing through thoughts and memories, and music, and movies or ideas for stories deep in the night when everyone else was fast asleep. Since I never went to see any doctor about the issue, I was never really diagnosed with insomnia, and as my mind/body has it's own way to deal with the so-called problem with the ever famous 'pay back sleep' scheme, it has never been a major problem.

But what's happening now, is I find myself self inducing insomnia, where I refuse to try and sleep regardless of how tired (and sleepy) I actually am. It's quite easy, really... I just drink a cup of coffee during lunch, and another cup of tea in the late evening. To avoid sleeping, I sit up and watch mindless stuff on tv, listen to music and try to sing along, and when entertainment is scarce, I read whatever falls into my hands. By doing this, I'm happy that even though I'd spent about 12 to 13 hours working, at least I used a few hours doing something I really like although I might no necessarily enjoy it at the moment. (And it's also not that I don't like working - I do... I might be bored to death otherwise) In my defence, however, after a certain hour, the so-called sleepiness disappears... which makes it hard to actually fall asleep.

I wonder when will the body start demanding the replacement sleep....

Thursday, August 09, 2007

CRAZY LIL THING CALLED TECHNOLOGY


OK. I'm officially annoyed with this thing called technology. And everything connected to it!
It seems to have formed a club where the main aim is to gang up on me and cause me sleepless nights, small little heart attacks and have me singing the chorus of Blur's Tender to those so called tech equipment to get things going.
Here's the story....
You could say that it all began somewhere in February when I saw that (insert laptop brand name) were having a promotion via (insert bank name) Very well knowing that I've been intending to get a laptop ever since Penti3's soundcard crashed I decided to get that laptop, because:
i. The favourite sibling has used hers of the same brand and says it's pretty good
ii. Yours truly is too lazy does not have the time to get it from a shop
iii. Talking to sales people in computer shops can be very confusing
Now so far, the laptop itself has no major issues with the exception of the (drum rolls please) Operating system. Which has been a big fat bummer thing of course, because the operating system is still in its infancy and is not compatible with everything else.
Me: Can't you give me the other operating system?
Salesperson (on phone): I'm sorry, we have phased out that particular system.
Me: But your advertisement says...
Salesperson (on phone): Yes, but the advertisement was released in January. Now it's the end of February, and we have phased out the old operating system.
Me: Fine, whatever...
So at this moment several months later, I'm using a mega *hebat Operating system which
i. Prevents every other program from executing.
ii. Does not allow me to install games like Sims 2 which I've been dying to play (according to a colleague, however, I need to upgrade my graphic card, and just my luck, I had other pressing issues to attend to the last weekend when the pc fair was going on. Besides, I'd have been severely clueless about the graphic card and knowing me, I'd have got something which will not be compatible)
iii. It does however, support games which were published back in 1998. How?
iv. The new printer is uninstallable because the installation CD does not cater for this hebat Operating system. I have to download the installation program via the internet. That itself is another problem, because although my bandwith is 512MBPS, the program decided to download at 9 - 15 kbps. Based on calculation, I'd need 10 hours to download the program! Grrrr
v. It nearly killed my 3 day old mp3 player. First the player just jammed up while I continuously pressed the next button. In it's hanged state, I did the only thing possible that is allowing the battery to die out. The next day, while I was charging the thing, it jammed up again and was totally undetected by the laptop. (I later learned very valuable lessons: a) Do not keep on pressing the next button on this particular brand of mp3 player because it will hang, and b) My laptop's usb port may not be powerful enough to recharge the battery, therefore while I was busy thinking that the player's being charged, the battery power was actually being used up!)
vi. Talking about the internet, I'm unfortunately disallowed from watching movies online... DivX played once and then totally stopped working. Software from a reputable company is (surprise, surprise) detected as a Trojan horse! What the hell?
vii. The saddest tale of all belongs to the old mp3 player... firstly I bought it without reading up on it, therefore the software to transfer music from the computer to the player created havoc... Penti3 looked like it was gonna die, my sis laughed at me, etc. But Penti3 survived and I could transfer my music at the rate of 1 song at a time. But now, with the laptop, the software worked for one day after I convinced it that I was the administrator, and then it too decided to leave me in a lurch. It says something is wrong with the system and suggested that I reboot my system. No way, Jose! No amount of uninstalling and reinstalling helped in any way..
Why, oh why do these things happen to me?
The only thing I'm glad is I didn't get the other type of pc/laptop... you know the one with the forbidden fruit? Had I done that, and with the wonderful support this place on earth has, I'm guessing I would have had to climb on the sunset thieves' balcony and thrown it down onto the road!

*hebat ~ wonderful

Friday, August 03, 2007

ITEM BY GENDER



Via e-mail:

You've might not known these philosophy, but a lot of non-living objects are actually either male or female.

Here are some examples:

FREEZER BAGS: They are male, because they hold everything in, but you can see right through them.
PHOTOCOPIERS: These are female, because once turned off, it takes a while to warm them up again.
They are an effective reproductive device if the right buttons are pushed, but can also wreak havoc if you push the wrong buttons.
TIRE: Tire are male, because they go bald easily and are often over inflated.
HOT AIR BALLOONS: Also a male object, because to get them to go
anywhere, you have to light a fire under their arce
SPONGES: These are female, because they are soft, squeezable and retain water.
WEB PAGES:
Female, because they're constantly being looked at and frequently getting hit on.
TRAINS: Definitely male, because they always use the same old lines for picking up people.
EGG TIMERS: Egg timers are female because, over time, all the weight shifts to the bottom.
HAMMERS: Male, because in the last 5000 years, they've hardly changed at all, and are occasionally handy to have around.
THE REMOTE CONTROL: Female. Ha! You probably thought it would
be male, but consider this: It easily gives a man pleasure, he'd be lost without it, and while he doesn't always know which buttons to push, he just keeps trying

Saturday, July 28, 2007

FUN IN THE SUN

Err… the only thing missing was the sun, because it rained.
It started out as a warm sunshiny day. A big group of people in teal coloured t-shirts were gathered at one of the pergolas waiting in excited anticipation for the event of the year (the proof lies in the fact that for the past two weeks at least, if you met someone else and intended to have some small talk, the obvious fodder for conversation would include: A) who you are bringing along for the event; B) what do you plan to wear (obviously the teal coloured t-shirt is compulsory, but what goes with it is entirely up to you which gave some people the notion that maybe you didn’t have to wear anything with it!) C) Memories from two years ago)
After a rather hurried officiating, a commonplace breakfast and a hilarious conversation with a child, we were gathered again to watch some games that were organized including a particularly funny one that went by the name lay an egg. It seemed as though everything was rushed through, compared to the program that was provided to us, and lunch and the grand lucky draw was unceremoniously brought forward. I was hanging out with a fellow PE and some of the purchasing staff who was wondering which poor unfortunate soul was going to get the hydroponic set.
A conversation that would most likely happen on Monday.
A: So man, what did you get that day?
B: Sigh… the hydroponic set. I don’t even have time to take care of my children. My daughter will soon start calling me uncle (a colleague of mine once actually said this, but it had nothing to do with hydroponics), and now they want me to plant vegetables!
A: rolls on the floor with laughter
The clouds gathered quickly as the official event was reaching the end, and as soon as it was declared over, the rain just poured down in torrents leaving the big crowd of teal coloured t-shirt clad people looking in aghast at each other and the sky.
The rain sort of ended, tubes were rented, stuff chucked into the locker, and we dived straight into the Zambesi. Now, even though I’m terrified of water, I still love it. The key is the feet must touch solid ground! On and off, we got in, came out, went to the pool which simulates the sea (where I got pushed off my tube and almost died in another theme park two years ago) But the simulated sea was a bit too much for me, because the waves just push you and if it gets too deep, then you’re quite doomed!
Later on I checked out some water slide thing, where you hold onto a water mat for dear life as you shoot at high speeds along a slide with a few curves that send your head in a frenzy, stops your heart for practically a few seconds which feels like minutes anyway, and pumps a crazy amount of adrenaline into your blood system that could leave you reckless for the next few days!
At about 3 something (the rain had stopped by now, but the day was cloudy, so it was really very nice weather) we decided to give the water games a rest rather reluctantly, as the dry park beckoned us. After hitting the showers and changing into a fresh set of thankfully dry clothes, we proceeded to check the dry park out. The suspension bridge was closed no thanks to the rain that poured earlier but we took the escalator up. Here we met Sheeba, a pitifully bored tiger that moves in her cage and shows her rear to the public. I felt very sorry for her. She belongs in the wild, moving swiftly through the dense rainforests and not get ogled at by the general public.
Moving on, there was a rock exhibition. It looked like a cave, only that we know it may be fake. The thing is I feel as though this whole thing is for those who seek adventure, but don’t really want to travel too far away from civilization at the same time!
We got on the roller coaster at buffalo bill’s, which was quite nerve wrecking actually, especially the sharp corners although we think that it’s actually for kids judging from the large number of children versus adults lining up for the ride. And finally we got on this other ride where you get suspended upside down for a few seconds with nothing except a bar across your body that supposedly holds you in place. By then my blood stream was probably filled with way too much adrenaline that I started giggling (though this could have been contributed by endorphines) and yelling “oh my god” and “oh shit” all the way up, down, forwards and backwards. Oh, and the heart stopped beating for a few seconds again!
Sadly, that was the end of the so called urban adventure. Or fun in the non-available sun as the title suggests :)

Monday, July 23, 2007

HP AND ALL THE DRAMA


JULY 21st marked the long awaited world wide release of the seventh Harry Potter book, which is also the final in the series.
There's a whole big fat marketing strategy involved, where major bookstores held pre-order sales for fans to book their copies months ahead to avoid disappointment of sold out books on launching day. To make things more interesting, they promised a small discount plus threw in a freebie and a possible invite to a mad pre-launch party.
Of course, initially when the first book (HP and the Philosopher's Stone) was released, there was not much ado. Many years later, books 1 to 3 were shoved right under my nose, and hence began my interest in the books, where I was fervently looking for a copy of GOF to read (I was still a student back then and buying the book was quite out of the question) I got it in electronic format though and spent a few days straining my eyes over the computer screen, but it was all well worth it.
It was however, the launch of OOTP (Order of the Phoenix) that sort of caught my attention, as it was only then I realised that the fans are crazy (lining up for hours at the bookshop entrances to get their hands on the books) and that there were promotions all around and stuff. Having still being quite penniless at that time (I was temping at a place in SJ at that time), I sort of stayed away from the crowds, and read the book when my sister managed to borrow a copy from one of her friends... I only bought the book almost a year later when they practically slashed the price by half.
Even for HBP which surfaced around July 2005, I thought that buying the book upon launching was not a wise decision, as I was waiting for the paperback edition due out the following year. Besides, someone had spilled the beans about the death of a certain prominent character (but not how or when) But then, just about a week after the release of the book, a friend of mine gives me the book, and I'm suddenly in the thick of the action!

This year however, things were different... firstly, it is the final book. Crazy anticipation like this most probably will never happen again in this lifetime and I decided (rather impulsively on a certain depressing weekend, that I did want to jump onto the band wagon of pre-orderers) I thought that maybe for just this one time, it would be fun to join in the crazy anticipation for the book, maybe dress up as a witch or something.... Mostly, I didn't want my fun to be spoiled by unscrupulous rumour mongers who will leak out the plot without any regard for others (It happened last year in the STAR newspapers... twas a big drama back then too!)
Just my luck, though... this time around, the hypermarkets decided to crash into the scene. "No need to pre-order, just join us at 7 am. Bloody breakfast will be served" so they said on the radio. To top it all off, they've slashed the prices by a whopping 36%. So now, the major bookstores have decided to go on a protest by not selling the books, but they will honour the pre-orders though no extra discount is offered, the usual pomp and fanfare that accompanied previous launches were not there, no posters were put up, maybe even the party which was supposed to be on Friday night was cancelled. All there was was a note of apology to the customers for the cancelled festivities as well as some information regarding their protest and the non selling of the books!
So in the midst of all these drama surrounding the most anticipated book of the year, who is on the losing side? Seriously, I'm not too sure myself. Maybe we should ask Penguin Malaysia.
The book is currently in the house right now... my sister read it first and I've just completed reading the book in an 8 hour span... Boy, do I feel empty right now... :)

Thursday, July 19, 2007

WHY CAN'T I BLOG?

Though ideas aplenty
My head is kinda empty
Like a dwindling pantry

I could just be lazy
While everything is hazy
Or maybe claim to be crazy!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

AN OVERDOSE OF CHOPSTICKS

A sudden decision saw me heading down to our southern neighbour on Sunday. The journey was a long drive reminiscent of certain Sunday afternoons of the not so distant past.
The main reason behind the unexpected journey (I say unexpected because I was only informed about it officially on Tuesday) is obviously a tad too boring for a blog post. Suffice to say that it involved hours spent in the lab mulling over non complex formulations and the testing of said formulations.
But the interesting part I should say, is the food...
The organisers of the training took care of us pretty well in terms of nourishment. For four days, lunch and dinner times saw us at restaurants serving cuisines from different parts of China. Shanghainese and Szechuan among others. And 'The Boss' (as how he was referred to -kind of makes you end up thinking of mafia like scenarios!) took the task of explaining about each dish as it was served. For instance Szechuan cuisine has an extremely hot and spicy flavour to it (beats cili padi anytime!) and the 8 herbs tea helps balance the heat. And there's this fantastic dish of aubergines cooked in a curry like gravy which was simply fabulous. Just for the record, in actual life I actually despise aubergines on most occasions. A fellow friend commented that the food we were eating is the kind that used to be served to the emperors in the older days.
In that 4 days we ended up eating almost everything that moves under the sun. From fowls to fish and frogs and mushrooms (of course mushrooms don't really move on their own because they can't but we'll just pretend this one time that they can, aight?) and an assortment of appetisers and deserts. I must say that the people of S'pore are slightly obsessed with mangoes. (All of them... it simply amazes me, and they were pretty horrified when I said that I don't eat mangoes. They think it's very un-Malaysian of me to not like mangoes. Well, that's stereotyping for you....)
Meanwhile, as Chinese food became part of our daily ritual, my chopstick using skills improved dramatically (they were a bit rusty due to lack of use) and now I can say that I can pick up a slippery piece of lettuce without the help of a spoon! Hooray!
The whole culinary experience was exciting in its own way. But I think I've had a good enough dosage of Chinese food to last me for the next few months. Right now I'm thinking of some delicious nasi lemak (can't seem to find a place that sells great nasi lemak anymore. Sigh..)

Saturday, June 23, 2007

BLOGGER CHICKS ROCK :D

Time for some fun stuff....

Gem, from Gem-osophy whose blog is one of my favourite haunts, received this amazing pink button from another blogger. Now, for those of you who haven't had the opportunity to check out her blog, please do so. She's has the amazing ability to put a smile on your face (or spill your coffee on the keyboard in laughter) via her posts.

In the true spirit of blogging, all good things must be passed around, and Gem had kindly mentioned my blog among those that rock... :)

Here's what she said:
Terra Shield of Terra's Secret Backup Blog, who has shown us so many facets of herself over the past year--Terra the A-List Reader, the Intellectual, the Working Girl, the Writer, the Fragile Twenty-Something with a heart so big and wide open that we can feel it breaking along with her at times.

Sweet, yeah? So here are the five chicks I'm passing along this awesomely hot pink button to in no particular order. Hope it matches your blogs :D
1. Aunty Helpful Dictator from Aunty Helpful Dictator Strikes Back. Aunty is a twenty something from Ireland who blogs about most things from vacations and crazy stuff at work as well as the recent elections. Ever wondered what the count from Sesame Street has in connection with the elections? That's why she rocks and this is where the scoop is :)
2. Sabila aka The Nerd from Revenge of The Nerd. Our nerd hails from NJ, and blogs about her life which can be rather exciting at times. She shares her taste in music and most of her readers know about that pain in the hip. She makes all the drama that happens around her into something that will entertain you for hours
3. Pugly from Pretty Ugly. Now, Pugly is a fellow Malaysian blogger who happens to be one of the very first few blogs I read about more than a year ago. She takes issues and blogs about them in ways that keep you interested and looking forward to more.
4. Maryam from Maryam in Marrakesh. Maryam is a cool chick currently living in Morocco. Her layout is gorgeous and her blogging style is absolutely mesmerising. Her posts sometimes make me want to just get away and head to Marakesh for a really long vacation!
5. The Thinker form Theory of Thought. The thinker's blog has the ability to make you think about things all over again. She blogs about school life, her favourite music, and how gory removing the wisdom teeth can be.
And yes... the awesomely hot pink badge needs to be passed around :) I kid you not

Saturday, June 16, 2007

ALL THINGS INDIAN

Well, sort of, I guess…


On the 3rd floor of the *longest shopping mall, a myriad of stalls stood side by side piled on with items that ranged from clothes to food to wall hangings. Throngs of people walked through the narrow aisles, eyes feasting upon the colours that greeted them in a wave of friendliness. The stall owners stood or sat at their stalls, waiting for the folks to drop by. That was the Global Indian Shopping Festival which was held for the past two weeks.


After missing out on the festival in 2006 for reasons that were soon forgotten, we made it a point to go this year. The idea of being able to find stuff that you don’t usually get in the Malaysian shops sounded enticing enough to brave the crowds that were sure to be there as it was the weekend as well as the second last day of the festival.


It was pretty interesting as far as interesting things go. There were lots of clothes although the particular type of clothing I had in mind was nowhere to be seen. However, they had plenty of bags on display. A ‘this is THE BAG’ moment was somehow turned into an ‘oh bummer! The zipper’s gone and this is the last bag’ moment. So in the end, it was ‘hey, another nice bag… I’ll get that’. Thanks to the hermana who patiently followed me around as I was looking for THE BAG. The wooden carvings were magnificent… I was particularly interested in a horseless (or bullockless) carriage (cart) but with no practical use for it, I tossed the idea aside (regretting it now)… And then there was that big bangle with little suns on it. Nice!

I also met two old friends whom I haven’t seen since 2002 (where has all the time gone?) where we chatted for a bit, caught up with 5 lost years in a few minutes. Hehehe small world, eh?


Most of the so called foodstalls sold sweets like palkuar (sp?) and the likes… it would have been so much better if the traders sold food from all the different regions of India like those shown on the travel channel.


Well, there are a few things that I learnt from that rainy Saturday… which may or may not serve as fodder for future blog posts
a) Wall hangings are amazing
b) Heels make you suffer for at least three days :(
c) My funny bone is beyond repair


d) Green and orange do look nice together

* It was, but not sure if it still is :D

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

ABSTRACT ART TAG

Disclaimer: I quit studying art by the time I was 16 mostly due to the fact that I disliked the C's that stared at my face each time I got back my report card from my form teacher.

A long time ago, just before my mini break, The Frolicsome Kid tagged me with this meme. Here's what you're supposed to do if you choose to do this tag.

Go to JacksonPolloc.org and use your mouse to create a design (usually beyond your control) When you're happy with what you've got. Print screen and edit it using any art programs. Which in my case, I just used Paint.
Kinda looks like a rabbit doesn't it?



I'm not tagging anyone for this meme, but feel free to let your artistic tendecies flow if you wish :)

Friday, June 08, 2007

WHAT'S THE HURRY OR ARE YOU JUST CRAZY?

This post goes out to the mad man on the motorbike.


Right. So there I was on my way back yesterday. The road was sort of not crowded along the stretch I was on (thank goodness for school holidays!) and I was sitting back and enjoying the colourful hues of the sky against the almost setting sun while driving.


My reverie was interrupted by a motorbike that chose to move around in what most people would call a dangerous manner... weaving in and out in front of the few cars around me. The rider moved precariously close and kept at an annoying pace in front of my car right in the middle of the road.


Next thing i know, he moves his skinny backside to one side, digs into a bag/pocket or something like that, turns behind and throws something. I imagined a hand grenade flying through the air and blasting off there and then. I don't want to die now. Not this way, anyway...


Well, before I get blamed for having a ridiculously wild imagination, I must explain that this person was wearing a t-shirt from a company had dreams to be our suppliers but was turned down due to some non-conformances. What if the sticker we are forced to display revealed that the driver of the car (me) was working for that company and mad man on the bike wanted some revenge? See...


Funnily enough, turns out that the mad man had not thrown a hand grenade (though it did look like one)... instead, the thing that lay on the road in front of me was the remains of a rambutan skin. What the...?



Why?


Why would anyone risk their lives to open a rambutan, eat it and throw the skin on the road all while riding a bike? Isn't it dangerous? And aren't you on your way home where you can eat it safely and be assured that you don't get banged down by some gargantuan trailer (the road became busier after the bend)?
What's the hurry?
PS: For non-Malaysians/South East Asians, a rambutan is a local fruit with hairy skin and a white interior somewhat like a lychee.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

BACK WITH A CLICK

After a few days of non-blogging, I have decided to come back.... not that the clutter in my head has reduced or anything like that, but I kinda feel way better than I was a few weeks ago!

Allright, I have another post to put up, and will be visiting my favourite hangouts soon!

Sunday, May 20, 2007

AS THEY SAY, I'LL BE BACK

I've noticed that I have been having an immense difficulty in gathering my thoughts and am therefore unable to blog at a frequency that pleases me. So for that reason as well as being extremely busy with the thing I do daily to at least help pay the internet bill, I have come to the decision to take a small break for an unknown period.



On that note, to all the tags and memes I haven't yet been able to do, (tags by Lizza and the frolicsome kid as well as the queen) no worries... I shall return to them when I've settled all those unfinished business.



See ya'll soon :)

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

ON THE NEWS

Barbarians rule the house,
Potty mouthed and vile,
Play games like cat and mouse
We're sure they taste like bile.

Disrespect and chauvinism,
Part of the package they say,
Living in a chasm,
Disgusting in a way.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

END OF A PUNISHMENT AND THE BEGINNING OF GOOD OMENS!


Wasn't that a mouthful? What I'm trying to subtly say is that I have finished reading Crime and Punishment by Fyodor D. Finally. (see, I can't even type out the authors surname without looking it up... the book is far away at the moment!)

It took me slightly more than 3 months to finish it, and if it weren't for the conditions I set in early March, the book may have been chucked into the cupboard and be best friends with the silverfish (the insect) that lurk there (whenever allowed to), abandoned and yellowing and hating me for the desertion.

If any book could be called complex, this has to be it. The main character is a multi faceted and extremely complex guy that it makes it difficult for easy reading. (Of course it was probably never intended to be easy reading in the first place, but as I now do most of my reading before going to sleep, maybe this book was a bad idea! - It's like taking an encyclopaedia on airplanes (when you're not an airplane afficionado) to a vacation in Bali, or something like that)

So, after three months (and slightly more) of trudging through the pages of minuscule print and falling asleep while reading and losing the last page and then looking for the last page again, etc. I finally finished it. In what I'd describe as a strange occurence, I find myself to quite like it - the story, not the idea of reading it!

Anyway, the preset condition was this... 'as long as this book remains unfinished, I'm not going to read any other book that comes my way' including this one book which was recommended by a friend ever so long ago, but which I only recently found. Actually, the book found me, and told me... "Read me! Read me!"

And that is what I did. Surprisingly, I managed to stay sane throughout the month.
I actually typed out this post on April 3rd, which suggests that this post is awfully backdated. At present, Good Omens has been neatly stored back into the book cupboard as I have completed reading it! It's a hoot! It was 6 days of bliss!
Anyways, back to the dreariness of life, I find myself shoving another abandoned book into my hands before I hop on to other more interesting stuff that await.
Why do I do this to myself?

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

A HAIKU

Thick or thin, with shoes
Chaffing occurs in stages
I run away from all

Thursday, April 05, 2007

A TYPICAL FATHER -DAUGHTER CONVERSATION

This happened some time back... when I was at home, forcing myself to read a book which I started in December but find it almost impossible to complete... I blame it on all the other distractions!

Anyway, my dad was watching football (or soccer depending on which part of the world you're from) on the telly and was rooting for Liverpool, whereas I was not really rooting for any team in particular. Well, except for the team that was playing against Liverpool....

Me: (in a quiet whisper) Man U! Man U!
Dad: I thought you quit supporting them after Cantona left.
Me: Yeah
Dad: Then read your book... Liverpool has to win tonight (day). Anyway, why are you suddenly watching football?
Me: I just saw a cute guy
Dad: I think I know who you're talking about
Me: Really?

"It's that one right?" dad asked pointing to a guy in white. "He's Neville." Dad said rather nonchalantly.

There are 22 people on the field excluding the referees. 11 of them play for Man U. There's a 1 in 11 chance for my dad to guess the right one and he said it correctly the first time. Could the myth about parents knowing their kids well could be really true?

Friday, March 30, 2007

WHAT'S NEXT?

I'm not being lazy... The last thing I need is an unauthorized copying lawsuit. I could use my hard earned money for so many other better things.


http://www.bernama.com.my/bernama/v3/news.php?id=254012

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

RED TUBES OF AROMATIC DELIGHTS

Where is the fine line between being a fan and being an addict?

I always thought that I was just a fan, be it in the simplest form of 3 in 1 with some hot water, or at the mamak, or even the version with all the fancy names... think frapuccino!

Yesterday, I realised (rather horrifiedly!) that I've passed the stage of just being a fan and had graduated to the status of an addict. As to when on earth did this strange occurence take place, I have no idea.

Now, it's been a habit of late (on working days, that is) where I have a cup in the mornings or during lunch break, where I rummage my bag for that red tube of deliciousness that exudes an aroma that fills the air with delight, but to my dismay, I found none!

I rummaged again, but all I found were rectangular packets of cereal... no way, this can't have happened. I'm sure I replenished my supply just last week. Distressed, I opened my desk drawer, hoping against all odds that a stray red tube might be lurking underneath the pencil and pens and business cards. Alas! There was nothing there... just an empty drawer where the business cards looked as though they were secretly laughing at me... "She's addicted... Ha! Ha! Ha!" they whisper amongst themselves. Presuming that I can't hear them.

You can bet that the rest of the day was pretty much miserable... the hours stretched painfully, the sleepy feeling overwhelming as the afternoon turned to early evening. The line has been crossed. There's no turning back... I have made myself into a slave of the beans that mean the world to thousands of others out there. I'm in the 'ín crowd'.

Dear world, welcome a brand new coffee addict!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

LANGUAGE UPDATE

It's just a few days past 3 months since I breathed a sigh of relief that my attempt to learn a new language has come to a close. I sat for a nerve-wrecking examination that lasted for like what felt like forever, and missed out on a friend's important day because of clashing schedules, and stopped my NaNoWriMo novel at 32000 words to study!

Anyway, the exam was fast forgotten, what with the mad rush to get other things finished and general mundane stuff such as work and all... until one day a paper with a few of our names was passed around, seeking our opinion on taking further classes, to upgrade our level from 4 to 3 (it's backwards, I know)

I nonchalantly crossed the space next to my name... No way am I gonna put myself through that torturous process again.

Yeah, so, the results came out the other day (Thursday) and it was opened by the people at work! What embarrassment! However, I suppose after all the good luck wishes that I received from you all, I kinda need to tell that I actually passed (Not with flying colours of course... that will only happen when pigs fly! Ha! Ha! Well, I sort of failed my listening test, but overall I passed. (Jumping with joy here)... It also looks like the few sacrifices I made paid off... Two less things to be bitter about!

I wonder if this is how the world really works or is it just me, but despite passing, I'm afraid I'm still unable to converse in Japanese fluently.... This might be a future real life scenario:
Japanese person: Speaks in high speed Japanese...babbles on...
Me: Hai... (pretending to understand)
Japanese person: Continues speaking in high speed, and adds a 'ka' to the back of her sentence intonating a question while looking at me questioningly...
Me: Ah, wakarimasen (I don't understand) followed by a foolish grin.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

AND YET ANOTHER BOOK MEME

Look at the list of books below:
* Bold the ones you’ve read*
* Italicize the ones you want to read *
Leave blank the ones that you aren’t interested in.
* If you are reading this, tag, you’re it!*
*If there are any books on this list that I didn't italicize and you think I should read, let me know in comments!
Also, what other books do you think belong on this list and why?

1. The Da Vinci Code (Dan Brown)
2. Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
3. To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee)
4. Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell)
5. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (Tolkien)
6. The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (Tolkien)
7. The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers (Tolkien)
8. Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery)
9. Outlander (Diana Gabaldon)
10. A Fine Balance (Rohinton Mistry)
11. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Rowling)
12. Angels and Demons (Dan Brown)
13. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Rowling)
14. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving)
15. Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden)
16. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Rowling)
17. Fall on Your Knees (Ann-Marie MacDonald)
18. The Stand (Stephen King)
19. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Rowling)
20. Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte)
21. The Hobbit (Tolkien)
22. The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger)
23. Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)
24. The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)
25. Life of Pi (Yann Martel)
26. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams)
27. Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
28. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (C. S. Lewis)
29. East of Eden (John Steinbeck)
30. Tuesdays with Morrie (Mitch Albom)
31. Dune (Frank Herbert)
32. The Notebook (Nicholas Sparks)
33. Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand)
34. 1984 (Orwell)
35. The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley)
36. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
37. The Power of One (Bryce Courtenay)
38. I Know This Much is True (Wally Lamb)
39. The Red Tent (Anita Diamant)
40. The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho)
41. The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel)
42. The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)
43. Confessions of a Shopaholic (Sophie Kinsella)
44. The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)
45. Bible
46. Anna Karenina (Tolstoy)
47. The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)
48. Angela’s Ashes (Frank McCourt)
49. The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck)
50. She’s Come Undone (Wally Lamb)
51. The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver)
52. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)
53. Ender’s Game (Orson Scott Card)
54. Great Expectations (Dickens)
55. The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)
56. The Stone Angel (Margaret Laurence)
57. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling)
58. The Thorn Birds (Colleen McCullough)
59. The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood)
60. The Time Traveller’s Wife (Audrew Niffenegger)
61. Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoyevsky) - currently reading
62. The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand)
63. War and Peace (Tolstoy)
64. Interview With The Vampire (Anne Rice)
65. Fifth Business (Robertson Davis)
66. One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
67. The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants (Ann Brashares)
68. Catch-22 (Joseph Heller)
69. Les Miserables (Hugo) abridged version
70. The Little Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery)
71. Bridget Jones’ Diary (Fielding)
72. Love in the Time of Cholera (Marquez)
73. Shogun (James Clavell)
74. The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje)
75. The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)
76. The Summer Tree (Guy Gavriel Kay)
77. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Betty Smith)
78. The World According To Garp (John Irving)
79. The Diviners (Margaret Laurence)
80. Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White)
81. Not Wanted On The Voyage (Timothy Findley)
82. Of Mice And Men (Steinbeck)
83. Rebecca (Daphne DuMaurier)
84. Wizard’s First Rule (Terry Goodkind)
85. Emma (Jane Austen)
86. Watership Down(Richard Adams)
87. Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)
88. The Stone Diaries (Carol Shields)
89. Blindness (Jose Saramago)
90. Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer)
91. In The Skin Of A Lion (Ondaatje)
92. Lord of the Flies (Golding)
93. The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck)
94. The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd)
95. The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum)
96. The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton)
97. White Oleander (Janet Fitch)
98. A Woman of Substance (Barbara Taylor Bradford)
99. The Celestine Prophecy (James Redfield)
100. Ulysses (James Joyce)

Those that were left behind:
1. The God of Small Things (Arundhati Roy)
2. Neverwhere (Neil Gaiman)
3. The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole (Sue Townsend)
4. Tom Sawyer (Mark Twain)
5. Moby Dick (Herman Melville)
6. God Knows (Joseph Heller)