Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Reflection

Dogbone gave me a desk calendar every year. I have been using the calendar since 2000 (I think) and every year, during the last week of December when things are pretty quiet in the office, I would flip through my desk calendar and look at what had happened in the past 12 months

This year was an interesting year. I started the year in Dallas, and came back on the day before CNY. Spent CNY with the family (mine and Anne’s).

In February, I went for a all guys trip to Penang with the old school friends: Loochomus, Baliant, Whitedruid. In March, I made a LANparty trip to Cameron Highlands with Zipd, Dogbone, Droolman and Gayric.

In April, I started hunting for a house. I saw a gadzillion houses – some are pretty good, others were disappointing.

Attended Monica’s wedding in May. In the same month, I saw Grease, the musical in KLCC Convention Center.

June marked the month where I was promoted to a managerial position. In July, my company moved to a new building. I started to look and hire in July. It was a busy month and significant in a way – I always feel that by giving people a job, I am changing their lives and somehow helping these people and their families. Lots of stress and excitement in this new job.

My youngest sister graduated in August and went for her convocation in Bangi. I went with Anne’s family to Grik, a village north of Perak (very near Kelantan) to visit her maternal grandfather. It was an important and good bonding session and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. August is also the month where my house hunting activities intensified. I believe I went to see house almost every weekend!

I found and signed the S&P for my house in Bandar Utama in September after 5 gruesome months of house hunting. October was the time I started to think about my proposal to Anne. Proposed in November.

In a blink of an eye, I now find myself in December, keys to a new house in my hand, ever ready to face 2007 and hoping that it will be a fruitful and memorable one. I hope that I am able to create more values in the friends, families and society, perhaps making an effort to focus on treasures of the heart instead of treasures of the storehouse (money).

All the best to everyone in your New Year.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Christmas at Monica's

That's the Christmas tree at Monica's house this year. Very quiet Christmas. From the 6 Friends, 3 were around this Christmas: Anne and myself, Phoebe and of course Monica. Everyone was sober. It reminds me of Season 10 of Friends - everyone is grown up or married or attached. Things are just more serious and not-fun. We don't have a fun-Bob (if you have seen the Friends episode on fun-Bob, you will know what I mean) anymore.

Monica's mom's fried rice and jelly cocktail drink is still as delicious as ever.

BU12

So I received my keys last Friday and went to inspect the house again. To my dismay, I discovered that the master bedroom is filled with stinking cat poo! There's so much of it that I suspect that my bedroom must have become a nesting place for these "miang" cats. GRR.. so last weekend, my father and I had to clean up the place. So smelly.. yucks...

After a few cans of Lysol and air freshener, the place smells like new :)

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Stealing Thunder

In one episode of Friends, Monica was upset with Rachel for stealing her thunder i.e. stealing the attention Monica is supposed to get - it was her birthday I think.

This Christmas eve, we are all going to Monica's house to celebrate Christmas. It's a yearly event and we have been doing this for years. This time though, Anne will be going to Monica's with me. A lot of colleagues will meet Anne for the first time. I hope that we don't steal Monica's thunder - she will be very upset :P

Looking back on some of the happenings around me, I find that I tend to steal people's thunder... like the other day, I stole Joey's thunder when his farewell dinner turned into Ringgit's birthday dinner :P

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Keys

This Friday I will be receiving the keys to the house in BU!
YAY!

So happy...

Now comes the reno and other works... YAY!

Monday, December 18, 2006

The Love Diamond

Have there ever been a time where you are absolutely thrilled with a purchase you made? A time where your choice was validated again and again that it was the right purchase and you were positively happy that you trusted your feelings and followed your heart? Well, it happened to me tonight.

I talked about buying a LD in this post. LD is actually The Love Diamond. Yes, I bought an engagement ring. I wanted to propose to Anne when I was writing the post and in fact, as of 19 Nov, I already have. However, that's another story for another day.

In this post I wanted to promote The Love Diamond. The boutique is called The Love Diamond and the diamonds they sell are named Love Diamond. This boutique is owned by The Carat Club, a prestigious diamond retailer in Malaysia. Ross, Monica and Phoebe went with me to hunt for an engagement ring. Our first stop were in Sunway Pyramid as we met there to try out the new Tony Roma's ribs. Sunway Pyramid has only 3 jewelry stores. Monica suggested that we go to MidValley to continue our search as MV has more store.

We went to Mid Valley, found Love Diamond and made the purchase. My decision was based on the sales-lady's excellent presentation and of course, the name "The Carat Club". She was convincing when she said that a Love Diamond is an ideal cut diamond - what this means is that each facet of the diamond is arranged with mathematical precision such that it formed a perfect 8 hearts and 8 arrows - this can be seen using a a special magnifying glass, which she demonstrated by showing it to us.

You can visualize the perfect 8 hearts by looking at the "O" in the Love Diamond logo. That's how it looks like on an actual diamond!

Each Love Diamond sold comes with a certificate which has actual picture of taken of the diamond, displaying the perfect symmetry of the 8 hearts and 8 arrows. Each Love Diamond is so unique such that I could bring it back years later to upgrade to another Love Diamond.

The setting was beautiful too. I chose their popular setting called Embrace. It has a heart shape and it's very petite - perfect for Anne's small hand.

I could also write a message in my own handwriting and they would laser-engraved that message into the ring. I thought this was totally cool - personalization.

So, I walked away from the shop, knowing that I have done the right thing.

Two weeks later, the sales lady called me. I went to MidValley to collect the ring and a few weeks later, I proposed. It fits her finger perfectly. I was very proud of myself to be able to guess correctly. Anne and I returned to the shop to have the ring engraved. I told the sales lady to pitch her talk to Anne which she gladly did. On top of that, they gave us the "magnifying glass" for free so that we could see the symmetrical 8 hearts and arrows anytime we wanted. This is what I called after sales service.

On top of that, I even received quarterly magazine from The Carat Club. I know these are spam stuff, trying to make you buy more jewels - the fact that it makes one feel good that the purchase one did was from a reputable company. I don't think Poh Kong nor Diamonds and Platinum give you such good service.

ZipD told me that his company, one of the top law firms in Malaysia, was tasked of filing the trademark "The Love Diamond" for The Carat Club. This demonstrate a kind of class - not many people would employ top law firms to do intellectual property filing (I think).

So if you ever want to buy a diamond.. get a Love Diamond!

Update: This seems to be a really popular post. Searching in it Google it turns up as the 9th match, which is kinda cool. Because of that, I am uploading a picture of the Love Diamond taken during the bridal photo shooting.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Busy busy busy Bee

It’s been a busy November month. I have to chase people at the insurance company, lawyers and what not to ensure the loan for the house is processed on time. Then there’s so many wedding dinners/events that I was involved in. Of course, there’s WOW in the equation and year end staff assessment. So many balls to juggle and what dropped – mamak/brunch session with friends. Ai.. can’t be helped. Sorry guys.

December is not any better – there’s hiring and there’s American guests dropping by. Lots of time spent here too. Of course, age is a factor – somehow I can’t stay up as late as I used to.

So much things to do. So little time and energy.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

PoTo

As I was surfing this morning, it dawned on me that I have not talked abt the upcoming Phantom of the Opera musical in Singapore. PoTo is coming to Singapore in March 29th. Phoebe, Monica, Anne and I will be making a trip in April to see PoTo. We will also have the opportunity to see rotitelur's baby at that time. I am so looking forward to this trip.

This reminds me of my first musical in Singapore. It was Miss Saigon. People say that one usually have fond memories of one's first musical and it is such a true statement. As I was surfing, I was listening to Miss Saigon's music in iTunes. What beautiful tunes.

It is my opinion that Miss Saigon and Les Miserables are two of the greatest musicals
ever. PoTo is not even close.. and you know why? It's not because of the costumes nor the settings - it's really because MS and LM are stories about human struggles against an oppressive environment. The fact that these are tragic stories proves that they are so real and easier to relate to.

PoTo, in comparison, are fake and contrive..

And if you analyze further, musicals based on American cultures (Fame, Grease) are so boring you wonder why it even make it to Broadway.. oh wait, that's American too :P

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

MidValley

Monica, Phoebe and I went to Midvalley and collected LD. We went for Nandos and then a cuppa at Starbucks. As Phoebe said, "Hari Ini Dalam Sejarah" which is true. And they are all part of it. It was nice to just catch up and gossips. Heh...

The last time we came to Midvalley was 2 weeks ago to order LD. Mah Lau was there. We ate at Tony Roma's in Sunway Pyramid before adjourning to Midvalley for our mission. I am glad we came here though it was out of the way. Good choice.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

World of Warcraft

I have been busy playing WoW lately. I have no time to blog.
Fortunately, I am still able to balance life, work and WoW. It is tough but it is possible.

I just have to do some sacrifices, namely blogging, chatting in MSN during weekends, surfing, the works. LOL!

GTG...

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Prestige

This weekend have been a busy one. I saw World Trade Center on Friday night in Cineleisure Damansara. This is the first time I have been to Cineleisure and I was surprised that it is a shopping center cum cinema. I always thought that it is just a cinema complex. I wonder how this center is going to survive with The Curve, Ikano and 1 Utama so near to it. Anyway, the movie, WTC, is very disappointing. I don't know why it get good reviews from Rotten Tomatoes. It's kinda dry and "expected".

On Saturday, I saw The Prestige with Anne and Bahija. Now, this is good movie! Very interesting set up, lots of surprises along the way, very "The Sixth Sense" like - the type of movie that made you look back to the beginning of the show to make you go "Ohhhh... no wonder.. now I see it!"

After the movie, Anne and I went to a dinner in New Paris, near SS2. This was a gathering of old school friends and their wives and partner. One of my friends, TaiLo, wanted to arrange a dinner so that he could ask CK's wife and son out (CK was the friend who passed away a few months ago). Anyway, TaiLo and CK were very close and CK's son will be one year old next month, so he wanted to do something - but TaiLo being TaiLo, he felt uncomfortable just asking his wife out so he decided to make a old friend gathering instead.

The funny thing is, there were so many of us that we had to sit in 2 separate tables. Daniel, Ah Ba, Loochoomus and me sat in one table. TaiLo, CK wife and See Yau in another table. Our table were the noisiest because all of us in that table are close and we went out quite often. TaiLo's table were quiet. Their children made the most noise, compare to the adults - kids ma.. This was a good arrangement actually because when CK was alive, See Yau, TaiLo and CK were the closest friends. Yet, they didn't have much to say. It was an awkward dinner. I was glad when it ended at around 8.30pm.

There is a point I wanted to make in this post but I forgot what it is.. as I was writing this blog, I was chatting with Bahija and Rotitelur. Men can't multi task.. LOL!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

You're Pitiful

Have you heard of Weird Al Yankovic?

He's an artist who sings parody out of popular songs.
He made his name back in the 80s when he started singing Michael Jackson's "Beat It" as "Eat It", depicting fat people in his music video, eating it. I love some of his songs, particularly one called "The Saga Begins" sung to the tune of Madonna's "American Pie". "The Saga Begins" tell the story abt Anakin Skywalker from Star Wars.

Anyway, he has released a free song called "You're Pitiful" - singing about a 42 year old gamer cum Star Trek fan who still stays with his parents and smells repulsive:

"You eat chips, of your chest, while playing Halo 2. No one is classier than you.. lalalalalalala Loser..."

This song is sung to the tune of James Blunt's "You're Beautiful".

Absolutely hilarious!!

Watch the video in YouTube. Or download the mp3 from the official site, linked above.

Things I did

So what have I done in the past 5 days?
1. I saw World of Warcraft in ZipD's PC and I must say I am TEMPTED to play the game. I told Loochoomus and Daniel about it and somehow they are interested also despite having no pc, no internet connection and having to fork out rm200 for the game. I think they do not realize how potentially devastating this game could be to their lives or perhaps they are just curious after reading about it in the papers.

I also saw the 7 adorable puppies in ZipD's house.

2. I finished Lost 2. Really nice and interesting TV series.

3. I started playing CoH. It was fun. I played around 6-7 levels from the campaign and has started to get bored. I bet the multiplayer would be interesting.

4. I installed the Pentium 3 PC upstairs for dad to use. It has wireless. Don't play play.

5. Visited Anne's cousin brother who was hospitalized. Poor chap skidded and crashed into a lamp post in Jalan Damansara before Victoria Station restaurant (just before Help Institue). So, please be careful. Coincidentally, there was a tow truck waiting in the middle of the night. Coincident? I don't know. The family suspect that there's something fishy going on (read smearing the road with oil hoping for accident). I'd like to think that the tow truck guy is not that heartless. I mean, I'd like to think that no human being would destory someone's life/take away another person's life for the rm200-300 they could earn. I wish I am right.

6. Read 3/4 of New Human Revolution.

7. Bonding with the family - went out for a few makans (bfast, dinners) with the family.

8. Installed Firefox 2 and IE 7.

9. Waste lots of time surfing.

10. Do some office work.. yawn... it keeps me occupied...

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Time Flies..

Mon, Tue and Wed is a public holiday here - Deeparaya. It's already Tuesday! I just wasted 4 days doing nothing and time flies! There's still so much to do...

Seriously though, I was bored. I wanna go back to work :P

Tech Stocks...

Tech stocks seemed to be pretty bullish for the past couple of weeks. I hope this uptrend continues till end of 2006. I could do with some moolah for the new house... Go tech.. gooooooooo!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Playing Host

Last weekend, I played host two an American executives. She's visiting the team here. Naturally, playing host cost money - money that cannot be claimed. SIGHHHHH... Anyway, that is not what I wanted to say in this post.

This evening, in 1 Utama, my host was intrigued by the OSIM iGallop, an exercise machine which one rides on it, as though riding a horse. My guest was thrilled by it and she realized the "implications" to the naughty minds. She was excited, claiming that she has never seen one like this in the USA. But that is not what I wanted to say in this post.

What I wanted to say is that as I was watching the salesman pushing the iGallop to her, something occur to me. I do a quick math in my head and was horrified to realize that what my American executive made in a month, converted to RM, is what this salesman make in TEN years! Can you imagine how disgusting this is? This poor chap, talking enthusiastically to sell her the iGallop, can talk for 10 years and still could not make as much as she did in a month.

GOSH...

And I just paid for dinner!

GRRR!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Mental Friends

This afternoon, Monica, Anti Ringgit and I met for lunch. I learned about the term “mental friends” from AR. He claimed that we have been demoted to be a “mental friend”, someone whom he only thinks about. Can you imagine that? Celaka.


So, the priority, according to AR is:

Mental friend -> Acquaintance -> Friend -> Friend Friend -> Lover

LOL!


Monday, October 09, 2006

Australian Post

Chat with Anti Ringgit who is now in AU..

Anti R (2:05 PM) then many other cerita lah
Anti R (2:05 PM) my ATM oz bank tak send lagi
Anti R (2:05 PM) hilang in post
Anti R (2:05 PM) now no money to pay bills
Anti R (2:05 PM) unless i go back and withdraw at oz bank counter
Ringgit (2:05 PM) Aiyo.. how come hilang in post? I tot only happen in POS Malaysia
Ringgit (2:05 PM) AU Post also same???
Anti R (2:06 PM) i dunno what happened
Anti R (2:06 PM) so when they dun give me ATM ..i cannot withdraw out there
Anti R (2:06 PM) i m relying on my own past income
Ringgit (2:06 PM) Can I post this part of our conversation abt AU Post in my blog?
Anti R (2:06 PM) drying soon
Anti R (2:06 PM) i dunno who's fault
Ringgit (2:06 PM) So AU is not exactly very efficient
Ringgit (2:06 PM) :D
Anti R (2:07 PM) a bit slow i hv to say
Anti R (2:07 PM) open an account need to set appointment
Anti R (2:07 PM) can u imagine
Anti R (2:07 PM) it's not like u walk and can open
Anti R (2:07 PM) that's why no time to meet anyone
Anti R (2:07 PM) hv to arrange all these itsy bitsy stuffs

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Haze is back

.. again...

Did you know that we have sufferred this intrusion from irresponsible Indonesians for 8 years? 8 freaking years!!!

If you have a child who is 8 year old, he probably thinks that it is an annual event - like Christmas or CNY. Can you believe this?

Monday, October 02, 2006

Discrimination

I went for a 2-day class today and learned something interesting. It's about diversity in workforce.

This is one of the most requested programs in FRONTLINE's history. It is about an Iowa schoolteacher who, the day after Martin Luther King Jr. was murdered in 1968, gave her third-grade students a first-hand experience in the meaning of discrimination. This is the story of what she taught the children, and the impact that lesson had on their lives.

Watch the video: (Official website here)

See it in YouTube.com
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJLUQzwCFIo

Friday, September 29, 2006

Panasonic

For months I have been looking for a good land-line phone so that I could take teleconference from home. I wanted to look for a phone with good voice clarity, ability to mute and to have speaker-phone capability. I have failed to find any - not that I really tried.

Anyway, I have decided to stop looking. My handphone has all these capabilities already. And with maxis' 132 option to dial USA for just 20 sen a minute, why would I bother with a land line.

Yay me!

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Why Some People Have All The Luck

Why Some People Have All The Luck
By Professor Richard Wiseman, University of Hertfordshire

Why do some people get all the luck while others never get the breaks they deserve?
A psychologist says he has discovered the answer.

Ten years ago, I set out to examine luck. I wanted to know why some people are always in the right place at the right time, while others consistently experience ill fortune. I placed advertisements in national newspapers asking for people who felt consistently lucky or unlucky to contact me.

Hundreds of extraordinary men and women volunteered for my research and over the years, I have interviewed them, monitored their lives and had them take part in experiments.

The results reveal that although these people have almost no insight into the causes of their luck, their thoughts and behavior are responsible for much of their good and bad fortune. Take the case of seemingly chance opportunities. Lucky people consistently encounter such opportunities, whereas unlucky people do not.

I carried out a simple experiment to discover whether this was due to differences in their ability to spot such opportunities. I gave both lucky and unlucky people a newspaper, and asked them to look through it and tell me how many photographs were inside. I had secretly placed a large message halfway through the newspaper saying: "Tell the experimenter you have seen this and win $50."

This message took up half of the page and was written in type that was more than two inches high. It was staring everyone straight in the face, but the unlucky people tended to miss it and the lucky people tended to spot it.

Unlucky people are generally more tense than lucky people, and this anxiety disrupts their ability to notice the unexpected.

As a result, they miss opportunities because they are too focused on looking for something else. They go to parties intent on finding their perfect partner and so miss opportunities to make good friends. They look through newspapers determined to find certain types of job advertisements and miss other types of jobs.

Lucky people are more relaxed and open, and therefore see what is there rather than just what they are looking for. My research eventually revealed that lucky people generate good fortune via four principles.

They are skilled at creating and noticing chance opportunities, make lucky decisions by listening to their intuition, create self-fulfilling prophesies via positive expectations, and adopt a resilient attitude that transforms bad luck into good.

Towards the end of the work, I wondered whether these principles could be used to create good luck. I asked a group of volunteers to spend a month carrying out exercises designed to help them think and behave like a lucky person.

Dramatic results! These exercises helped them spot chance opportunities, listen to their intuition, expect to be lucky, and be more resilient to bad luck.

One month later, the volunteers returned and described what had happened. The results were dramatic:

80% of people were now happier, more satisfied with their lives and, perhaps most important of all, luckier.

The lucky people had become even luckier and the unlucky had become lucky.

Finally, I had found the elusive "luck factor".

Here are Professor Wiseman's four top tips for becoming lucky:
1) Listen to your gut instincts - they are normally right
2) Be open to new experiences and breaking your normal routine
3) Spend a few moments each day remembering things that went well
4) Visualize yourself being lucky before an important meeting or telephone call.

Have a Lucky day and work for it.


Thanks, Bahija, for sharing!!

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Ramadan

Today is the first day of Ramadan, where Muslims all over the world fast for a month - to remind them of the hunger and loneliness that a huge number of people have to go through everyday. It was 2 years ago, around this day, that AR, Bahija, Miss Peace and me went for a tour to Egypt. Time really flies. I have not been out for a overseas holiday since. Looking at the state of financial commitment I am having now, it will be a few more years before I go for another hols. I am glad that I made that trip to Egypt back in 2004. Very memorable and enjoyable trip.

So much has changed since them. AR migrated. Bahija found happiness and nourishment to her soul by adopting the Christian faith. Ringgit has a new and happy life with Anne. Miss Peace owns two beautiful Golden Retrievals.

Everyone progressed to the better. Let's not forget the less fortunate and take this opportunity to reflect and be grateful for what we have :)

Remember, complaints erase good fortune. Grateful prayers build happiness for eternity..

Yet Another Team Lunch Saga

I know we are all sick of hearing this. And I am sick of talking about it. Yet I could not resist. I didn't realize that it was already 3 months since I took the team out to the Japanese buffet restaurant in 1 Utama. Time flies!

So, this quarter, I decided to try to keep the budget in control. Hey, I am not paid enough to keep on sponsoring for other people! I have a house and life to sustain, you know. Anyway, so I decided to take the team to a Nyonya restaurant in 1 Utama.

All was well.. nobody was complaining, except this one lady. Let's called her Seller, as she came from the sales background and loves to tell people she's a seller. Seller has problem with her boss. Often, she would talked to me over dinner and asked for advice. I usually gave her very good advice - so she feels that she could trust and be close to me.

When she heard that lunch was at the Nyonya restaurant, she wasn't thrilled. She started telling me that on that same day, the business consulting group is going to this posh Italian restaurant for team lunch and our team is going to Nyonya restaurant. I didn't respond to that as I do not know what to say at that point. In my heart, I am thinking, hey, the business consulting group manager is probably loaded. He/she is probably on sales plan and earn 2 or 3 times more than I do. And he/she was a managers for years - I am only 3 mths in the job (thus explains the poverty).

So I ignored her remark. When lunch was about to start, someone bought a cake from Secret Recipe. This cake was to celebrate someone else's birthday (cost of cake.. rm60.. come out of own pocket, cannot claim, btw). Miss Seller saw the cake and whispered to me, "He he he.. why buy cake? Don't want to allow people to order dessert? Why so "kuu horn" (stingy)?"

That's it. I turned to her and I said, "Seller, sometimes, it is best to be grateful when someone buy you lunch and not start comparing nor criticizing."

She defended herself by saying that "it's just a joke".

"I don't think so, because this is not the first time you brought this subject up. I think you stated this more than 5 times. A joke is only funny once", I retorted.

I am not sure how she reacted after this because she kept on saying that it is a joke and that I should not get offended. I ignored her totally.

I am so pissed at people like this.

They think they deserved it. Hey, if you think the company is not doing enought, go complain to the CEO. Go talk to HR and said that RM25 per person for the lunch is pathethic. Don't expect the poor working manager to fork out extra out of his own pocket. I have 15 staff. Even if I were to fork out RM15 more PER PERSON, that's RM225. That is a lot of money ok! I have to think twice buying a RM119 Apple keyboard for my own enjoyment. What makes you think I wanna spend RM225 every quarter?

Actually, it's not just RM225. There's the monthly cake thingy (RM60). There's events like the recent Club dinner which I have to fork out RM100 to sponsor my staff to go because the these very people refuse to pay rm50 themselves to go for the Club dinner.

Unlike the business consulting group managers who are on sales plan, when their staff worked hard (after the Italian restaurant lunch - as if!), his salary multiplies (note the term multiply.. his salary may doubled!). If my staff worked hard, the most I would get is maybe a few percentage more in my performance bonus. Of course I am not able to afford to take them out to Italian restaurant.

It's not even an apple to apple comparison.

I have to learn not to be affected by comments like this.

As long as I have done my best to my affordability and I could answer to myself, I think I should not be affected by people like Seller.

The funny thing is, this is the very same people who will not even buy you a rm1 ice cream!

Monday, September 18, 2006

2407WFP

The Dell 24" Flat Panel Display arrived today.

No dead pixel...

yet...

I am happy...

What a awesome display!

YUMMY!!

Saturday, September 16, 2006

BU12 Part Deux

This afternoon, I arranged with the agent for another viewing of the house I bought. My mother, sister and Anne's parents have not seen it. The general consensus of everyone after viewing the house is that it is all THUMBS UP! Mom was very excited about it. She thought it'd be a very run down place (for the price) but after she has seen it, she felt much better. It is new and clean, is all she said the whole afternoon. All of them like the "pinkist" tile that the owner did upstairs. I didn't really like that very much but they all agreed that it is nice and it would be a shame (and expensive) to tear it down. So all of them have some idea or two of what needed to be done to the house.. I am glad that everybody's happy.

When I think about it, most of my house buying has some areas that we are not completely satisfied with. You see, I'm not rich. Because of the limited amount of finance I could afford, there are not many places I could see. Unless I wanted a far away places like in Bukit Rimau or Bandar Botanic (hehehe, no hard feelings, Bahija), my choices are limited.

Eg, the apartment I bought did not turn out to be the dream place that the brochure painted in my mind, thus I have to sell it off. Our current houses in Menjalara is small, though we have a huge driveway - and it is also near an oxidation pond. So, yeah.. people who are limited by finances have very limited choice in the type of houses/location they could buy.

The BU12, however, is really like a HUGE windfall. The house is big, the location is good, the price is right. Almost everyone who saw it agrees that it is a good buy. Such unanimous opinion is almost not existence with my choice of houses. So, I am basking in the glory of finally making the right decision, this time.

Thank you, Lord! :D

Apple Pro Keyboard

The Apple keyboard is really nice to type. Very responsive. There's a very good feel about it. Makes me wanna type more and more blog just to feel the thing. Highly recommended for anyone who is looking for a keyboard. The only thing that is missing is the PrintScreen button because it is relabelled as F14. I used a small little program called SharpKeys from RandyRants.com to change the Windows Registry to map F14 to PrintScreen. Simple and elegant.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Complaints erase good fortune...

"Complaints erase good fortune, grateful prayers build happiness for eternity"

These are words that Anne have drilled into me for many months. After dating her for around one and a half years, I must admit that there are some truth to this statement. Most of my friends would probably attest to the fact that I complained less and less these days. And you know what, I do find that a lot of things in my life has improved - relationship with colleagues, managers, friends, families and even "acquaintances". A lot of things go very smoothly when the "people" relationship improves.

So, people.. don't complain. You will find that life will be much better than before..

And if you could truly say grateful prayers.. and I mean truly grateful.. you will find happiness. I still have not achieve this level yet.. LOL. Anne said that sometimes when she pray, she will be so grateful for whatever it was she's grateful at that tears fall down her face.. Hmmmm... She said, for example, that she doesn't complained "why her parents didn't give her this or that" but instead chanted grateful prayers that "her parents are alive and healthy".. that is why she's always happy and never complained.

We all should emulate her :)

Dell 2407WFP - 24" of goodness

I have ordered a Dell 24" Wide Screen flat panel display. Hopefully there won't be any dead pixels like what I had experienced previously.

Wish me luck..

Because 24" is really huge, I don't think I need to use my ol' faithful Sony 17" monitor. Since I still have a Pentium 3 collecting dust beneath my table, I plan to recycle the P3 with the Sony monitor. I am thinking of getting a wireless PCI card to install it onto the P3. I could then put the P3 upstairs so that the family could also use it. My sis and father could be able to use the Net during the weekends when I am hogging the PC.

So, all I need is a mouse and keyboard..

And this morning, I bought an Apple Pro keyboard. Amazing little thing.. very nice to type (dare I say that it feel even better than a ThinkPad keyboard?) - well it does.. there are two USB port behind the keyboard and I could charge my iPod. This is *totally* cool :)

The keyboard has a volume up, down and mute key just above the numeric keypad.. which is pretty cool.

I just can't wait for the Dell to arrive to transform my whole desktop :D

Oh.. on more thing - you might be curious why I am suddenly so, um, generous to myself? Well, I had a nice windfall.. I received an award - heh.. while it should really go into the new house, I decided to reward myself with a 24" monitor and Apple keyboard. I will worry about the house later. I figure that once the house thingy start coming in, I will not be buying things for myself for a long, long time.. so I had better do it now.

iTunes 7 is out!!

... and it is damn, damn cool:
1. auto download album art from iTMS for songs that you do not have album art

2. ability to browse your song as though you are flipping through CDs.. really nice..


3. new interface when I plug in iPod.. very cool

4. ability to burn mp3 CD from playlist (previously, you can only burn music cd) .. now I can burn all the songs in my fav playlist to Anne. Last time, I had to locate individual files from my hdd to copy to her.

Go download it..

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Bought!

I finally bought a place in Bandar Utama for rm415K .. yay!

I am happy. That is a very good price.

The owner is an Indian lady doctor. She stays in Damansara Heights so she must be loaded. Anyway, her daughters are furthering their studies in the USA and they needed the cash which was why they wanted to sell the house. I have done some homework prior to putting down the money. Have spoken to 3 neighbours and asked them if there are any problem with the house.. you know, like those "dirty" stuff... they said that the house has always been tenanted and they have not heard of any dirty stuff.. I guess that's good enough for me. My immediate neighbour validated the "daughters studying overseas" story. She said that the owner told her about this and asked her to help sell.. at that time, they were asking for almost rm500k but no buyer.. and they get desperate.. so.. I am very lucky!

Now I have to find money and banks to help me finance the house.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Some people have all the luck

My colleague is quitting. Her husband, who is working with an international bank, managed to get an assignment to London, United Kingdom, for a minimum of 2 years. My colleague is following her husband to UK. They planned to go there in Nov/Dec.

This evening, I heard that my colleague went for a phone interview with my company's UK branch and was offerred a regular job! In one interview! She was jumping with joy. This colleague is a high performer. It's no surprise that she is able to secure a job. I am happy for her!

The strange thing is that just this morning, I interviewed and offerred a job to a Peruvian through the phone and I could also hear the joy of happiness over the phone cables.

I am happy that I could make someone jumped with joy, thousands of miles away. I probably made his day.. and probably changed one chapter in his life.

Now, if only I have such luck...

Monday, September 04, 2006

Register

Yesterday, during breakfast, my mother nonchalantly declared that it was good of me to start looking for a house because I could also start planning for my marriage. I grunted indifferently. She then pressed on and asked me when I am getting married. I said next year is a good year, I guess. She was quite insistent because the third time, she suggested out loudly, why not register first? I was surprised at that statement. My sister was sniggering in the breakfast table.

I looked at her and she burst out saying that my mother and her went to visit Twar Ee (eldest aunt) recently and Twar Ee is trying to influence my mother to get me hooked asap. She said, don't wait for him to decide, if need be, you call Anne's mother directly.

"Wah lau!", I exclaimed, "So desperate meh?"

"With your temper, I scared Anne run away from you," she defended. "Since we are at this topic, I find that she's a really nice girl. She respect old people, she's soft spoken and not opinionated. You should hold on to her."

"Okayyy.."

"And you are turning 35 soon... and she's also not young. You must be fair to people's daughter.."

"Okayyy..," even though I am just 33 and she's just 28... I think my mother IS desperate.

"And you don't want to have white hair only to see that your son/daughter is just 10 year old.. so don't sit on this!"

Wow.

I don't know what to say to that :P

Sold

Last Saturday, I was supposed to make deposit payment for the house in BU12 at 3.30pm. At 11am, the agent called me to tell me that the house was sold. It was sold for RM455K, RM10K more than my offer. Sigh... Perhaps this house is not meant for me.

Monday, August 28, 2006

BU12 Part 2

The owner decided to lower the price to 445k.
445k for a BU12 house, 22x75, 2,200 sq ft built up..
AIYOOOO! HOWWWW!?

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Mad

I am staying in Menjalara and the area around this quiet township has been going through major development. Opposite my house, just across the road is Desa Park City and Sunway SPK - huge development projects, When Sunway SPK first launched a few years ago, a 2 storey house cost RM550k. The 2.5 storey house cost 690K. A 2.5 storey Southlake house in Desa Park City is selling for 880K. Gives you an idea of how property prices has boomed in this part of Kepong.

A few days ago, I saw what used to be a nice cluster of rubber trees being cleared. This huge piece of land is opposite the 7-block Menjalara condominium. It is also directly opposite Nadia houses of Desa Park City. On the signboard was a simple "Cadangan membina 196 unit rumah dua tingkat" (Plan to build 196 units of double storey houses). When I saw it, I was excited. A new housing development. Please let it be reasonably priced. The board did not say who is the developer. I am holding my breathe.. hoping to see some flyers or mural indicating who is the developer.

Today, in 1U, my hopes are dashed. There was a booth set up in new wing. That piece of land is another Sunway SPK.. and the 196 units of double storey house are actually Semi Ds. Sunway is building 196 units of Semi Ds right in Menjalara. Going price? 1.6 MILLION!

MADNESS!

On the bring side, maybe our house in Menjalara will appreciate too..

Thursday, August 24, 2006

BU12

Last week I went to Bandar Utama to look at a house. It is in BU12, a nice secluded area just opposite Sony, on the other side of the road. The house is huge – 22x75 with a built up of 2,200 sq ft. This is a big built up for a 22x75. The asking price? RM470K. It’s relatively cheap because BU houses are 500K and above. I am tempted to get the place. There is one reservation: the house is the 6th house from the corner. Opposite the end lot, is an empty clearing. Checking with the developer, this clearing is reserved for MPPJ to build a mosque. The land is already given to MPPJ since 1991. They have not built the mosque for the past 15 years. They will build a mosque.. just that we don’t know when. I am torn. What should I do? My friend PCS said that he’s love to stay in BU far exceed the bad points of having a mosque next door. So he does not mind. What about me? I do mind a mosque but I just cannot believe that I could stay in BU for RM450K!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Monday, August 14, 2006

Gerik

Last week I went with Anne and her family to Gerik, to visit her maternal grandfather. We left KL on Friday evening and spend the night in an aunt’s house in Simpang Pulai, Ipoh. Went for breakfast the next morning and left Ipoh at around 2.30pm. We reached Gerik at around 5pm and spent the night in her grandfather house in Gerik.

Gerik is a small town and like any other small towns in Malaysia, it is quiet and peaceful. There are a few rows of shophouses and recently, there’s a Fajar mall. I was surprised to see Fajar – it’s huge by a small town standard. I am not sure if it will survive.

Anne and I spent the evening wandering around the village. It was a really nice and cool evening walk. I notice that people don’t lock their houses here. It must be nice to feel so safe. Anyway, I heard from her grandfather that lately there has been a couple of break ins. There were some construction (they are building a new highway to Kota Bahru) so the townsfolk suspected the Indonesian immigrants are the culprit.

Anne’s grandfather has a few orchards but I didn’t get to see them. We didn’t have too much time, unfortunately and the orchards are far away. I’d love to see a  durian tree.. heh heh.. but nevertheless, her two uncles who stays in Gerik brought lots of rambutans, duku langsats and durians for us. It reminds me of the stories we read of kampong boys reminiscing on their datuk’s dusun and gathering round the house feasting on local fruits. Well, I get a taste of this last weekend.

The trip back to Ipoh and KL was smooth. All in all, a great weekend.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

123456

Wow.. When I reached home after Jim Brickman's concert, I looked at my speedometer and saw that my car has clocked 123,456 km! (well, it was 123,456 just at the mosque near my house but I was not able to stop the car to take a picture. I took the picture when I reached home, which is another km away).. nevertheless, it was a coincidence! 123,456km for a 7+ year old car. Not too bad, eh?

An Evening With Jim Brickman

Yesterday, Anne, my mother, sister and I went to Genting Highlands, to spend an evening with the American pianist, Jim Brickman. My sister has 3 free tickets courtesy of her friend. We bought one ticket from Genting.com so mom can go and I must say that we enjoyed ourselves tremendously. There were 3 guest singers: local "diva" Fauziah Latiff, Philippines singer, Phoebe and an American male artist, John Trones.

I'm ashamed to say that Fauziah pales in comparison to the Philippines and American artist. She sounded awkward, unable to bring the song alive and worst, she has to read the lyrics from a book, as though she was not prepared. During a duet, instead of staring into John Trones' eye, she was staring at the book. Shame on you, Fauziah! In one incident, Jim Brickman told the audience that she'll let Fauziah introduce the next song that she's going to sing. Fauziah said that the song she's singing is in her new album - this song is called Perjanjian and that it is a rendition of Jim's "Your Love" song. After she said "Your Love", Jim started to play "Your Love".. it was a silent 10 second before Fauziah interrupted Jim and said "Er.. Jim.. I thought we are going to sing "Simple Things"

Aside from that, it was very entertaining. Jim Brickman was amazing! He did not refer to any score sheet and he played like almost 20 songs! That's a lot of notes to remember!

John Trones was a surprise hit with the audience. He has such amazing voice!

Overall, we had a really good time.

The picture above showed the Arena of Stars at around 8pm. It was not a full house, that night..

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Disturbingly Attractive

I find this photo of two Swedish World Cup fans distubingly attractive...

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Busy

Looks like everyone in my blogsphere is a busy bee.. myself included. Managing 15 people is no piece of cake.. so I am getting very much challenged here. I had my first group motivational talk today and I think the team is abuzzed with enthusiasm. Anti-R said that they have no choice because I am their superior. I'd like to think they have a choice and that their choice is to respond positively to me.

So, yeah.. I am a busy bee... and I am hiring... any potential candidates?

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Happy Birthday Mozart

Yesterday Anne and I went for free concert. A group of youth celebrated 250th birthday of Mozart by playing a few pieces of his popular orchestra piece. These guys/gals are probably still studying and boy, they are good! They play violins, trumpets, saxophones, piano, drums, etc.. almost a mini orchestra. I feel so cultured, ha ha.. it was fun.


Tuesday, July 11, 2006

BRP

I am in a dilemma. Looks like I am always in a dilemma. Today’s dilemma has to do with my quest for a house. Let me get one point straight. I, like many other potential house buyers, would really LOVE to stay in Bandar Utama, Damansara Jaya, Mutiara Damansara, Bandar Sri Damansara, Sunway SPK, Desa Park City and what not. Who doesn’t, right? Unfortunately the price of real estate in these areas are exorbitant. The prices are too expensive for the design and built up of the house.

Take Desa Park City for example. Anne and I went to check out the Southlake Terraces, a newly developed sub-area in Desa Park City. This 2.5 storey house is nice but there are some “artistic” design to the houses that made certain rooms extremely small. The kitchen, for example, is a quarter of my kitchen size. It is extremely small. And this house cost RM800k.

I have also looked at a few houses in Bandar Sri Damansara. The houses are small. The ceiling are low. A typical 22x75 house with a built up of maybe 1600-1700 sq ft cost around RM380k. Some are asking for RM400k. It’s crazy.

On the other hand, I am eyeing one house in Bukit Rahman Putra. Bukit Rahman Putra is in Sungai Buloh. It is not too far from my house (11km distance or 20km from 1Utama) but the traffic is crazy because they are “always” building/expanding the roads. Because of the condition of the traffic, BRP houses does not have high values.

BRP is a very beautiful township. It is quiet and very well established. Houses there have very nice built up because 15 years ago, when the developer (Hong Leong) built BRP, it was supposed to be the next big housing area. Unfortunately, they were screwed because houses in Bandar Utama came up.. and the government moved all the important infrastructure south to Cyberjaya and Putrajaya, which explains why Puchong prices came up instead. My mother remembers that when Hong Leong started selling BRP houses 15 years ago, the going price was RM220K. This is the same price as the first phase of Bandar Utama houses in the same time frame.

Anyway, to cut a long story short, BRP is a nice township but there are little values in the houses there because of the bad traffic and the fact that people are moving South.

The house I was eyeing is a corner house. The land area is 42x70. The house is 20x70 with a built up of almost 1700sq ft. All the rooms (there are 3 rooms upstairs, one downstairs and 3 baths in total) are design in squares so they looked spacious. This house has a 22ft empty land as the corner – almost as big as a typical intermediate house.

The going price: RM375k.

It is affordable. I do not need to eat bread to afford this house. But, I have to face traffic going to work everyday. Also, if I am hoping for the price to double in 10 years, I think it will be difficult. Having said that, a corner will definitely have a higher price than an intermediate so this could be a slightly plus point. So, I am torn. Should I get a house in BRP at an affordable price and face traffic or should I get a smaller place at the same price range in a better location?

Thoughts?

Thursday, July 06, 2006

"Change the Whole Cast of Characters Also It Is The Same"

Mr X is not Habibi. Ha ha .. Bahija thought Mr X sounds like the Habibi we know. Now that she mentioned it, hmm.. there are some similarities.

I told Mr X about the lunch where I was being “wat”. I told him that I am not the stingy type. I buy friends lunches, dinners and drinks. However, I hate it when I am asked to do so because I don’t owe people the lunch/dinner/drink. To me, if you have the balls to ask me to treat, that means, you feel like I am obliged to buy you lunch/dinner.. and why should I do that? The reason why I am so disturbed by the whole incident is because I “em kum yuen” to pay because I feel obligated/ “wat” by the people.

Anyway, Mr X told me this. He said that I write the script of my life. Today, it is my colleagues who “wat” me. If I change the whole cast of characters in my life, ie I don’t know any Bonnie or Mr Miser or NLK.. but instead I have Tom, Dick and Harry.. I will still feel the same. I will still feel like I was “wat”

So it is important for me to change within myself. So what if I buy people lunches? I must not feel that I was bullied. I ought to let go. It’s not easy.. but once I start to let go and be willing, all these will accumulate good fortune and will come back to me in the future. I may accumulate so much fortune that in the future, I probably will also automatically treat people for lunches.. because I already have such a big heart.

HMMM…

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Team Lunch - What Mr X says..

I just IM-ed Mr X... he said:

X: i dun see it as accumulating good fortune just by giving money away.......it is more of the intention.....
X: ie...a rich bad person may contribute to charity...
X: but he will not accumulate good fortune..
X: but if a poor lady, sell her hair and use the money for the sake of others (poorer than her)...this is an act of compassion... and will be rewarded in return....see..the intention is important here...

Does that mean I am doomed? WU WU WU!

Team Lunch

The company allocates a mere rm25 per person for the manager to take the team out for a lunch/dinner every quarter. This rm25 covers only for regular employee. So, the other day, to "celebrate" my promotion and of course to use this fund, I took the team out for a lunch in Shogun, a Japanese buffet in 1U, Bonnie being very enthusiastic about it. She has been bugging me non stop about taking her out to lunch because of my promotion. Bonnie's skin is harder than Superman's skin, so there was no surprise there. I usually just smiled at her. One day, I just can't stand her greedy nagging. I stare at her and with a conspiratory tone to pique her interest, I whispered in her ear - did you take me out to lunch when you were promoted last year? Her face paled, she said no. I looked at her with a satisfied look and walked away..

So I took the team out to Shogun. In my team, I have contractors and IT Trainees. These are people who ate whom I cannot claim. The damage? I have to fork out RM800 out of my own pocket. Fortunately, my ex manager, who is now my peer, offered to pay half - well, 25% of the team currently reports to her - so I know she will fork out but I did not expect her to help me out by paying half!! Bless her. Even then, it's rm400 for a lunch!!

Sometimes, I can't help but wonder if this promotion is worth it.

Anne said that it is ok because nice people like me will accumulate good fortune. And good fortune will always come round and bless me. Ai.. I have to ask Mr X what he thinks.

Monday, July 03, 2006

X

I'd like to tell you about X. X is the type of person you read in books; the Gandhis, the Martin Luther Kings, the Mother Teresas, the Florence Nightingales. He's the person that motivates you to be a better person. He's the one that inspire you, the one that brings out the best in you, the one who made you feel good because he treats you with respect, the type of person your parents wished you were. X is the type of person who so pure in this world of anger, hatred and sadness, that you wonder if he was from another planet.

I said that X inspire people. I am sure you have met people who are good at motivating a whole lot of other people. Most of the times, though, these people are religious leaders or CEO of a companies or the successful diamond-level multi-level marketing genius. These people have the type of charisma to mesmerize you in their talk, to inspire and motivate you to do better in your job, to sell one more lamp/ling zhi/whatever. But really, two days after the talk, you forget about them.. you fall back into your original uninspired self.

X is different. When X talks, he's not trying to sell you anything. He's not trying to convert you to his religion. He's not trying to motivate you so that you work harder for him. No. When X talks, he speaks from the heart. He just want to bring out the goodness in you, so that you can be a better person. X wins when you are sincerely happy. X wins when people around you are happy.

I was a skeptic. Many months ago, I would not have believe people like X exist. I would think that they are fairy tales characters. When I met someone like X, I always feel that people like him have hidden agenda. Perhaps he's trying to recruit me to sell Amway. Perhaps he's a Mormon or from Assembly of God. Or perhaps he has no friends and just wanna make one - there must be a reason. When I first met X, I was skeptical too. "Ah, just another goody two shoes", I thought to myself. Let the influence of Ringgit proof him wrong. Let me introduce games, booze, movies, generally time wasting-lepaking at mamak to divert his attention from saving the world. Let Ringgit's fouled mouth and beautiful curses showed him the colour of the world.

X is of course much stronger than Ringgit. Instead of being influenced, X influenced Ringgit. X brings up the goodness in Ringgit. Ringgit don't hate Bonnie anymore. Ringgit don't dislike Mr Fly anymore. Ringgit sees light and hope in his life. And the thing is, it is not a temporary change, like the way one temporaily felt when one goes on a motivational course - one just felt motivated for a day. The change in Ringgit is gradual, I admit, but there are many positive signs.

I wish many of my friends get to meet X. I bet that they will find that their perception of their life would be different. X can give you a different pair of lenses to wear, so that you don't see the world as one big gloomy world. Through the lense, the world you see is full of sunshine and beautiful flowers and happy, smiling people. Ha ha.. of course I am exaggerating... but it is better than the grumpy and unhappy people I used to see everyday at work. Things are so much different now.

X told me stories of his exploits - at work and in his life. Again, it is pretty amazing how he handled difficult people, who then turned out to be his good friends. I will have to tell you some of his exploits in the future.

I am glad I have X as a friend. And I know I am not having "A Beautiful Mind" syndrome (schizoprenia). He's for real.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

New Look

My blog has a new look. I decided to ditch the boring plain white for a sexy blue... :)
The old look lasted for 1.5 years!

Spiderman 3 - May 2007

Over at apple.com, Spiderman 3 trailer was released...
and it's about Venom, the alien organism...
WOW..
http://www.apple.com/trailers/sony_p.../spider-man_3/

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Wireless

I am typing this from my bedroom upstairs - and that's because I bought a 4-port wireless D-Link modem/router from LYP for rm280.

I went to Telekom Malaysia today to return the modem that was included with my streamyx package. I plan to upgrade my 512kbps line to 1Mbps. I figure since I have this D-Link, my father and I could use the Internet at the same time. Also, I can work from my room. To my surpise, the upgrade of the line is as simple as filling out a form. The line will be upgraded in 5 working days.. and because I have been a loyal subscriber, TM asked me to keep the old DSL modem! Cool! Now I have a backup in case the D-Link got fried.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Bash

This afternoon, my colleagues gave me a 'surprise' birthday bash. I quote the word surprise because they wanted to do something for me but the organizer sent email to the team, including me! So I knew abt the birthday bash and what not. However, they were very creative. Since I apparently knew about the birthday celebration, they asked people from outside my team, friends that I have made in the company, to bring the cake in and sang the birthday song. That, I was not prepared for. It is nice to see Alpinesis, his gf and Sean coming into the office with a nice birthday cake. Monica, NLK and Emily were invited but they all are stuck in another meeting. Nevertheles, I thought that was creative.. there were almost 40 or 50 people who came! Can you imagine that! I think this is the biggest crowd ever for a birthday party. I am happy. Didn't know I was so popular. Hmmm...

The team brought me a Borders gift voucher because they know I love to read. When I saw that, I commented that maybe I should spent the money on some management books. That caused a few ladies to start giggling. They said that they actually saw 2 books on sale in Borders: "101 Biggest Mistakes Managers Make and How To Avoid Them" and "Just Promoted!: How to Survive and Thrive in Your First 12 Months as a Manager (Paperback) ".. Cruel!

I did have a good time. We had cakes, roti jala and rootbeer float.. some celebration!

Monday, June 19, 2006

No Tips. Learn on the Job.

I wrote about NLK before. This morning, she sent me an IM. She asked me if I am keeping something from her. I knew that she heard about my promotion so I think she's playing with me. I told her you must be asking about my promotion. She said "ya lor.. how come never tell?" I said, well, it was just announced. Then I asked if she has any tips. She said "No tips. Learn on the job!"

Somehow I felt offended by that remark.

And I thought about what I heard from the rumour mill - about how unpopular NLK is, as a manager. At one time, she had a very high staff turnover and some other managers were asked to counsel her staff, to act as a middle person, to find out what happened.

I am glad NLK didn't share any of her "tips". It would not have added any value :P

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Updates

I have been pretty busy lately. It's hard juggling all these balls, trying to keep them in the air: work, girlfriend, family, friends, colleagues, health, IM, gaming, blogging, etc. Some of these balls, I have to drop. So I dropped the rubber ones - those that will bounced back later - IM, blogger and gaming. I still make time for the rest so I think I am doing good so far.

Some quick updates:
1. I celebrated Anne's 28th birthday. I ordered a dozen of roses and sent it to her office. She did not expect this at all - coz I used to surprise her once a while by sending flowers, even though there are no special occassions so she told me one time, point blank, that it is a waste of money and asked me not to send her any. She did not expect that I'd send them to her on her bday (DUH!)... anyway, she had a good time. Lots of colleagues dropping by her office in envy.

I took her for a nice dinner in our favourite sushi restaurant. We had a good time. It may not be as good as last year's but I believe she enjoyed herself tremendously. I know I did :)

2. June marked my 10th year anniversary with the company. June also marked my promotion. So it is a good start. I hope I will excel in my new job.

A lot of people said that Anne brings me luck in my life. I agree but sometimes when I ascent 5,000 ft up in the air to look at the situation, I think it has nothing to do with luck but it has to do with something as simple as being positive. She definitely bring me joy. And whne one is joyful and happy, one's disposition improves. When you have a positive vibe, you give out a positive aura. And a positive aura causes things around you to move and evolve positively. Thus, all things come easy: work, relationship with people, etc.

My point is.. being positive is very important. It is one of the hardest things to maintain if life have been hard at you, but if you see the long term benefit, then it is beneficial to work towards having a positive mindset.

3. I am still hunting for a house. It is not an easy... I am tired...

Friday, June 09, 2006

Kicked Out

Today, I removed Anti Ringgit from my speed dial #5. I hardly call him these days. He's being replaced by Anne's office number, her mobile number being speed dial #2. Poor AR getting unpopular these days, eh?

Google Browser Sync

Google has a  new Firefox extension called Google Browser Sync. It is pretty cool.

From Google blog:
Google Browser Sync is a “Firefox extension that keeps your browser settings for all your computers in sync. Google Browser Sync unifies your bookmarks, history, saved passwords, and persistent cookies across all the computers where you install it. It also remembers which tabs and windows you had open when you last closed any of your browsers and gives you a chance to reopen them. We think you'll enjoy how it handles sync conflicts and "just works," enabling you to bring your browser with you everywhere.”

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Nike+iPod

For those who goes to gym and are OCD about statistics:

http://www.apple.com/ipod/nike/

"You don’t just take iPod nano on your run. You let it take you. Music is your motivation. But what if you want to go further? Thanks to a unique partnership between NIKE and Apple, your iPod nano becomes your coach. Your personal trainer. Your favorite workout companion. Introducing Nike+iPod."

"The Sport Kit allows your Nike+ shoe to talk to your iPod nano. The sensor uses a sensitive accelerometer to measure your activity, then wirelessly transfers this data to the receiver on your iPod nano."

"Sync up after you cool down. Just as seamlessly as it syncs your music, photos, and calendars, iPod nano also syncs your run. Simply connect iPod nano to your Mac or PC, and your workout data syncs to both iTunes and nikeplus.com, where you can see your runs, set goals, and challenge friends. The Internet is an open road."

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Blog vs Reality

Conversation with a friend in a coffee shop:

Ringgit: Have you read my latest blog entry?
Friend: No, what is it about?
Ringgit: You read first, then we discussed..

As I utter the words above, it struck me that I should not use blog as a means to replace actual human to human conversation - this explains the lack of entries these days - because I interact with people more and more...

Or is that an excuse for not writing?

Birthday ideas..

Anne's birthday is approaching soon. What should I get her? Any ideas?

Thursday, May 18, 2006

?? - Friends

I know some of my readers have been waiting anxiously for my write up on CK. I know I promised to write about it but one week after the incident, I just don’t feel like talking about it. It was a sad affair. I cried my balls out. On the day of the funeral, the band played some of those oldies song that we all love during schools and those are major tear jerkers. The song was chosen by CK’s wife. She said it’s his favourites: Beyond’s ???? (Hoi Foot Tin Hoong), Alan Tham’s ?? (Pang Yau, Friends) and as the last song, she dedicated “Yat Lou Soon Foong” (not sure who sang the song but it means “have a safe journey”)… wah lau… seriously, with those songs playing during a funeral, it’s hard not to cry.

Many of our school friends came – even those that we have not kept in touch for a long, long time. Loochoomus, Daniel, The Fly and myself went all 3 days. We are CK’s closest friends. WSL came for the wake and the funeral. She was our Form 6 friend and our badminton kakis. Daniel lit up a cigarette for CK and smoke “with him”, tears flowing down his cheek. This is one part of Daniel I didn’t get to see. I didn’t know he placed so much emphasis on friendship.

We are a close group. Every one of us have many years of histories together. I have known CK since Form 1. That’s almost 20 years of being friends.. studying together for 5 years and then playing badminton almost every week for the next 5-10 years. What’s more, we always hang out in his place for mah jong and chor dai dee during CNY. He was my remiser. I could still remember one of our outings where we played squash and he was pretty riled up when I boasted how good I was at squash. Even though he has no sneakers, he insisted of playing with me. I beat him flat and he had slight back injury because he wore his leather shoe. Back in KL, a girl took care of him because of his back ache. He thought that was really nice of her. They hooked up and he married her. I’d like to think that I indirectly match make them (

CK was not the first in our group to part from this world. Back in Form 6, our dear Kai Chai left us because of leukemia. He was a very smart lad. Even though he missed a lot of classes due to his condition, he was always one of the top students in our school. I remembered crying a lot during his funeral too. Then, there was Ayam Togel. He wasn’t very close because he was lan si. Nevertheles, he was also part of our class. Ayam Togel was with me since Standard 2 but I never like him. He was another intelligent fellow. Went to UM for Comp Sc, graduated and then worked in a big insurance company. Was diagnosed with brain tumour and his life went downhill since then. Heard that he has to wear diapers because he could not control his, um, discharge and people shunned him because of the smell. Poor guy.

Makes you think really hard about life, eh?

R.I.P CK, Kai Chai and Ayam Togel.
?

Sangria

Sangria is a popular drink in Spain. It is very easy to make. I learned about Sangria during CNY when one of my colleagues who is from South America showed us how to make that drink.

To make Sangria, all you need is a bottle of red wine, a bottle of F&N carbonated orange soda (soft drinks and not the usual syrup), some fresh fruits – oranges, pears, apples or watermelons, and ice.

Cut the fruits into small blocks. Pour red wine and soda together.. more soda than red wine so the drink is sweet. Put ice cubes. Serve.

YUM!!

Monday, May 08, 2006

CK

I have known CK since he joined our class in Form 2 Ferrum. He was 34 year old this year. Yesterday evening, he passed away due to heart failure. It was very sudden. All of us were shocked to our bones. He worked very hard - perhaps too hard - it was his work which caused his departure. He was survived by a young wife and a 6 month old son. His son does not know the father. I am saddened beyond words but I just want to say that CK was an honest man with lots of principles. All his life, he was one of the first to extend a helping hand to friends, family and colleagues even though it meant going out of his way to do something. Very dependable guy, very hardworking, very thoughtful and considerate. Sometimes, it is hard to accept that someone like him would go - just like that.

The wake is tomorrow. I'll write more later.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Readers

It just occured to me that having people you know reading your blog stops you from writing which defeats the whole purpose of a blog. Bummer.

I am sure many of my fellow writers would agree.

LOL.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Dead Pixel

So yesterday my new Dell monitor arrived... and guess what? One dead pixel, this time, at the lower right. This dead pixel is pink, instead of blue. It could only be seen on a white background. The previous Dell monitor's dead pixel, which was in the middle of the screen, was blue in colour and could only be seen in a black background.

I am not entirely satisfied with this LCD, but I am also too tired to return it. I can't imagine myself going back to CRT after a wonderful experience with widescreen LCD. I am guessing that dead pixel would appear anyway (dead pixels are caused by failure of individual transistors) in the future.. so returning it may not help. Who knows, maybe if I returned it and buy my third monitor, I may get another lemon with 3 dead pixels or worse!

Anne thinks I should not return it. She said that I may get another lemon like I did with this second monitor. She claimed that there is "no absence of beauty, just lack of discovery". She said I will discover the beauty in this monitor.

Bahija thinks I should return it.

My father said that if I am serious about buying the widescreen, I should not return and instead keep this one. After all, it's just a speck of dust.

What would you do, if you are in my situation?

P.S. I could return it within 15 days of purchase. I will be refunded fully. I just need to pay the rm80 shipping charge. I have already paid rm80 to return my first monitor.

Inclement Weather

I learned about this word two years ago. I called a someone in Canada and I was told that their offices are closed "due to inclement weather". Checking the dictionary, I learned that inclement weather means severe weather. Yesterday, KL, especially Section 17 PJ faced one of the worst weather we have ever seen. Roofs flew off, trees uprooted, the glass door in front of my office's lobby shattered. I don't think Malaysia has ever seen such wrath.

If you notice, weather has a roundabout change this year. What used to be a humid and hot Chinese New Year month in February turned out to be a rainy day. Just last month, Subang faced a major storm that uprooted many trees. Then Shah Alam and Giant hypermart was flooded.

Yesterday night, my Taman was shrouded in mist... almost like Genting Highlands.

I have been bitching about hot weather and haze almost every year. Is this the answer? Hmmm... albeit all these chaos, it has been pretty cool and 'breezy' and good-feel. HMMMM...

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Ads

These are some of the most ingenious and yet, low budget advertisements that I have ever saw:
http://www.apple.com/getamac/ads/

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Dell 2007WFP

I placed an order on the Dell today. There is a RM600 discount for the next 3 days. The monitor is now priced at rm2099! Last month it was rm2299. W00t!

Friday, April 28, 2006

Kash

I need a hair cut. Badly. I have been so busy that I have no time to go to my usual salon in Mid Valley. This evening, I decided against my will to go to this salon across the road from where I work. I have been to this salon twice and I had a bad experience. That is why I have not returned. But I am desperate. So, I took a gamble and went today.

At the counter, the girl asked me if I have any specific "sifu" that I wanted. I said I don't have preference. I just wanted someone who could give me a normal haircut. The reason I said this was on both occasions I was in this salon, they gave me a young punk-Jinjang-Ah Beng hair style. Once, I actually commented to the "sifu" that I think she overdid it and she exclaimed that this is the "in" thing and that I look good. I said no, this will get me into trouble at work. No one goes to work in this hairstyle. She just pooh poohed my comment and sort-of give me that "don't be ridiculous" look. I was pissed! I thought I was the customer!

So I told the girl at the counter I wanted someone conservative. The girl who walked me to my seat was 6 foot tall and she said she could do it for me. I said "You?" because I thought she was just a counter girl.

"Do I look hip and lala girl?" she asked.

"Of course not", I answered, feeling pai seh that I actually thought that she's a counter/shampoo girl.

So, off she goes happily cutting my hair...

"Who cut your hair previously?" she quizzed.

"I don't remember. Some girl's name that start with H something," I said, trying hard to think of her name. It sounded like Hash, Hazel or some name that only come from Hong Kong.

"There's no one named H here"

"Oh well.. maybe she left, I said" and I told her the story about this H lady who was adamant to cut my hair in HER style instead of mine and that she did not even listen when I said no.

She cut and snipped. Then she rushed to attend to another customer. Cut and snipped.. Then ran to another customer.. Hmm, why was she so busy, I wonder, and why was her rushing around and not cutting my hair, felt so, um, disturbingly familiar. Nevermind, she did a good job anyway, I thought as I checked myself out in the mirror.

When she finished, she asked me if this was conservative enough and I said yes, good job.

She walked me to the counter.

"Thank you, she said. Let me give you my card. My name's Kash.. what's yours?"

And that was when it HIT me! RIGHT in the FACE! KASH! NOT HASH! I remembered this bitch who thinks that her name sounds like Cash and that it was pretty funny.

I looked at her hard, paid the fee, cursed myself and left.

Bitch.

How did I end up with her again?

Friday, April 21, 2006

No Movies

Do you know that the most recent movie I saw was "Inside Man", a movie by Denzel Washington and Jodie Foster? And the movie before that was Jennifer Aniston's Derailed. Between these two, I have missed out so many other movies! What's happening? Where did all the time go?

(I meant this post in a very good way, of course)

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Study Room

My work table...
There is a defect with my widescreen LCD monitor. There is one dead pixel in the screen.

Of all the places in the entire monitor, the single dead pixel had to happen right in the middle of the screen. It's irritating and I am disatisfied with it.

So, I contacted Dell via email. The girl was very helpful. She said that I was not able to exchange the monitor because the company policy states that any LCD monitor with less than 5 dead pixel is not considered a defect. If there are more than 5 dead pixel, I would qualify for a one to one exchange.


I told her that I would like to return the unit then. In Dell's Total Satisfaction policy, I could return any purchase within 15 days from the invoice date without question asked. She agreed and kicked start a process where by DHL will come and collect the monitor. I have to pay the shipping and handling though - it cost me rm80 and I agreed to it. What to do? I rather lost rm80 than have a dead pixel. Such is life. LOL.

Returns and exchange are different. Exchange means that the purchase is confirmed (after 15 days) and that it is considered a warranty process. Returns means that they will just refund me because of disatisfaction with the product, not neccessarily due to defect.

So, while waiting for DHL to come and pick up the monitor, I went to dell.com.my again to buy a new unit. To my surprise, the system is now rm100 cheaper! Wow... Instead of losing rm80, I gained rm20 from this activity.

Such is life.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Widescreen Gaming

Widescreen Gaming
After 6 hours of using the Dell widescreen LCD, I have been pretty happy with it. It was a different experience, both when playing games and when surfing/using Windows. The fact that I could be reading a blog and monitoring all my chat windows while checking my download status all at a glance AND running my email program on the old Sony so I could also keep an eye on it, was an exceptional experience.

The Dell widescreen LCD shipped with default brightness set to 50, out of 100. When I first plugged it into the PC and Windows started, I felt that 50 was too bright – my room is dimly lit, by design – so when I surfed the Internet for 2 hours, my eyes was strained. I proceeded to reduce the brightness to 15. Ahh.. much better…

However, the lower brightness level affected gaming. As usual, ZipD’s critical eye saw the washed-out textures. It was really due to 2 reasons: the low LCD brightness and the higher in-game video brightness (80% in the slider). This combo causes darker textures such as those of a huge boulder to looked washed out. Once I fixed this, the world of Tamriel came back alive in VIVID colour. However, quitting the game and going back to Windows to surf would create eye strain again.

It’s a catch 2-2 dilemma.

Luckily, there’s the nView profile provided by nVidia drivers to adjust brightness. I’m still playing with some of the settings but it looks promising.

Otherwise, it is something to get used to. My work tonight is to find the right balance in terms of brightness.

Wish me luck.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Widescreen

Dell is damn efficient. One day after I ordered my widescreen LCD, it shipped! I am now looking at this in my new Dell 2007WFP. Damn nice.. I shudder to think of gaming and watching DVD in widescreen. More updates later..

Monday, April 10, 2006

Hardcore

Zip said I upgrade PC because of a particular game. He said I am more hardcore than he is.. Hmm.. let's see..

I bought my Pentium 2 in 1997 because of the superb 3D graphics of Tomb Raider 2.
I upgraded to Pentium 3 in 2000 - I don't remember upgrading for a particular game.
In Feb 2004 I upgraded to a P4 for a game called Gothic 2.

I have since been using this P4. It's almost 2 year old.

I am hooked to Oblivion now. Today I bought a Dell LCD monitor so that I could play this game in widescreen. I'd be lying if I said Oblivion plays no part in this decision but I'd also think that it is about time I get a nice LCD monitor for myself. That way, I could have two screens. Kiasu!

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Cool

This is seriously cool: TuneBuckle. It's a belt with a buckle just big enough to fit the iPod nano. Who would have thought of using a belt buckle as a convenient place for the nano? The headphone jack plugs into the side of the buckle. Brilliant! Go to the webpage to take a look.











On another side note, BootCamp from Apple allows intel-based iMac and MacBook to boot Windows XP. Check out the cool disk partition software and the "alt boot" screenshot. Nice...


Press alt key when the Mac boots up to choose which OS to boot.


The disk partition software that came with BootCamp

Monday, April 03, 2006

Updates

I have been very busy lately. I have visitors, both from the States and from London. I have been playing hosts the whole of last week. Couple this with some recent house hunting and I am truly spent. What little time I had for myself are spent on a new game called Oblivion. So, yeah, very busy I was. And in case my avid readers are worried about me, don't. These are good things. It's not a good thing if I am blogging. It means I am too free :D

A couple of updates:

Anne are as wonderful as ever. I truly belief she's really my missing "bone". How could one girl fit me so perfectly is truly beyond my comprehension. I would not believe this compatibility exist a couple years ago... but it does! Yay Anne!

I am very pleased at the weather. It's been raining in the evenings and early mornings so it's very pleasant. It's bizarre, some said, because it's supposed to be a hot season at this time of the year but I think that perhaps the "El Nino" effect is really gone and we are back to the good, old, tropic weather with monsoon rain and cooler weather. Like 15 years ago during Secondary school. I remember that every morning my father have to wipe the windshield with a cloth to clear up the dew. I have not seen dew on the windshield for a long time and I am not seeing them again. Yay Weather!

Friday, March 24, 2006

Dust Storm

Imagine vacationing in Cairo and getting dust storm! One can't even see the Sphinx nor the Great Pyramid at all!

Full story and pictures here.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Maggot @ Work

Two weeks ago, we discovered maggots in the ceiling of our office. These worms dropped into my manager's metal dustbin.. plooop! And then another one dropped... ploooopp! It's disgusting. We asked our maintenance guy to check the vent and they found nothing. Two days ago, our office is infested with flies! EWWWWWWWWWW!

Update: the finally found the cause. A dead bird!...................... what could be worse?

Friday, March 03, 2006

Out with the old, in with the new...

Canon called me yesterday, one day after I sent my camera back to their service center. They say my replacement camera is here and I could go collect.

I went today and to my pleasant surprise, they gave me a new model! The Digital IXUS i Zoom. I mean, I am really happy with my IXUS v3 already and now I am getting a completely new model, at no cost! The IXUS v3 was a 3.2 megapixel with 2.0x optical zoom. This IXUS i Zoom is a 5.0 megapixel (!!) with 2.4x optical zoom. It has the same Digic II processor but with a more advance menu function. One feature I particularly appreciate is the Timezone. When I travel next time, I could just change my "Fly To" (as opposed to Home) timezone and pictures taken in the destination will record the correct time and date. It has the same old solid feel of an IXUS.

In addition, I can now take video up to 60 minutes or 1GB in size, whichever come first. Video could be capture at 20 fps. The old camera could only capture 5 minutes of video. This is a huge improvements.

I checked Froogle and this camera cost around USD$379 - US$399. That means the camera would cost RM1,500 in Malaysia. That's the same price I paid for the IXUS v3. I could not imagine Canon giving me something at the same price. I am simply speechless.

I have one gripe to this whole event. I recently bought a new battery for the v3 to take more photos during sister's wedding. The old battery is just too weak - it could hardly last an hour of continuous indoor shooting.. This new battery barely 2 months old and now I can't use it anymore. The new camera has a completely different battery design. On top of that, my compact flash 128mb and 512mb memory card is rendered useless. This camera is relatively smaller than the v3, so it uses MMC memory card. That means, I have to get a memory and possibly a set of battery in regards to this exchange.

At any rate, Canon, you have one very satisfied customer and I'll be sure to tell everyone I know about this!

R.I.P. IXUS v3
2003-2006
Dallas.Los Angeles.Las Vegas.Grand Canyon.San Diego.San Francisco.Melbourne.Hong Kong.Bahrain.Cairo.Aswan.Luxor.Giza.Pangkor.Lumut.Seoul.Dallas

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Canon

I am delighted with the service that Canon rendered to me today. As you know, my 3 year old camera failed when I was in US. After researching at Canon website and lowyat.net, it seems to be a known problem, a defect. Some people claimed that Canon replaced the camera for free. I wasn't so hopeful because my camera is 3 year old, after all. I thought I need to make a scene, to insist on the free replacement or maybe speak to the powers that be. Well, it turned out that I don't have to do a thing at all.

The Canon Sales and Marketing center is located near the Subang airport, somewhere near Hyatt Saujana. They are opened everyday from 8am - 8pm except Saturday and Sunday. I went at 5pm today, parked indoor (free parking, btw) and went to the service center. There was just one customer. I took my number and waited for 2 minutes. The technician, a Mr Tan, served me. I showed him the sympton and he inspected the camera. He said that something was wrong with the CCD and they will replace a new one for me. He asked me to bring my charger because I have to return it in exchange for a new charger and battery. That's it! No arm twisting. No need to show receipt. No need to show warranty or whatnot. He typed something in the PC, printed a receipt and asked me to sign. He said they will SMS or call me in a week. I will get a brand new IXUS v3.

WOW..

Now, that's customer service!

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Bitching

What do people talk about during lunch and in water cooler today?
Petrol prices, of course. The “blardy govment” has increased petrol prices by 30sen. That’s a 18.5% increase for the year 2006. In the past year one year (from 2005), the price has increased more than 50%! This is RIDICULOUS.

But that’s not what I wanted to bitch today.

Flood, you asked? True, it is sad to see that a good area like Taman Tun Dr Ismail Jaya in Shah Alam being flooded because of heavy rain. I remember passing by that place when I went to ZipD’s aunt condo last year. I remember seeing billboard near that place promoting the place. It’s expensive. A house there cost RM400K and above. So an expensive residential area covered in flood. How embarrassing can that be? The Shah Alam Stadium car park is submerged!

But that’s not what I wanted to bitch today.

What was the hot topic during lunch was that our water drinking has urine smell or, as the newspaper and government called it, "a higher level of ammonia". Just a few days ago, I cleaned up the ground stairs toilet because it smells of urine. I thought perhaps someone in the family did not aim properly when they are relieving themselves. But no matter how much I flushed or hosed the place, the urine smell persisted. I thought nothing of it until the topic was brought up today. My colleague claimed that even when they bathe, the water running through their body smelled of urine. Or when washing their teeth. Omigosh! How low can we get? Syabas, the semi private company running the taps told us that it's chemistry. It amazes me how the people in power thinks that the citizens are some sort of cow or donkey. They must think we are stupid.

This is so ridiculous and embarrassing.

I mulled over this post for a while. On one hand I wanted to post it. On the other, I feel so humiliated to post such a thing. It has come to a point that I felt like airing my dirty laundry. Am I the only one being disgusted by this?

Monday, February 20, 2006

Toyota Camry

This morning I drove mom to work. Traffic is bad but this post is not about traffic. My mother works in the city in a run-down shop-lot. Her office, which sells car spare parts, is a uncondusive place to work. It has no a/c, it’s old and poorly managed, it’s dirty and dusty. But she has been working for this company all her life and while she’s just a clerk, she has a lot of freedom to run chores and gossips.

Normally, my father would send her to work. This morning, I have to go to work early and my sister took our other car so I volunteered to send mom to work.

I don’t know why but as I reached the curb of her office, I imagined my father dropping her off in our old Charade Aura. It is such a small car for two adults. My mind started to wander and I thought about how nice it would be if my father was able to send his wife to work in a nice, shiny Toyota Camry. I imagine how my mother’s colleagues would be envious of the new car and how she would brag about the car that her son bought for the family.

I am sure that my father would be very happy behind the wheel of a Camry. He’s from the old school (generation) where car is the only hobby. Guys from his generations take care of cars like a religion. I bet many other people at my father’s age are like that. They have a dream car that they have always wanted but it always remain a dream because they could not afford that dream car. It’s usually not a Mercedes or BMW as those were unattainable fantasy. It’s probably something more down to earth, yet within their lifetime, most of them would not be able to own the car. It will still remain a dream. These guys may be able to buy the cars of their dreams but they never did because of other, more important use of the money – better house, college/Uni fund for the kids, etc.

Some old men are lucky. Their son made it big and could buy them their own dream cars. Some just get to drive their son’s car as they could only afford one car. Some aren’t as lucky because while their son may own the nice car, the father will not get to drive it at all (for example, if the father lives in Penang and his son is living and staying in KL)

Technically, I could buy a Camry because it’s just a bank loan away. On the other hand, I could not afford to do so because I am also looking for a house. The Camry would cost half the price of the house I am looking for. It will depreciate exponentially. In just 10 years, the Camry would be worthless. Buying a house would be a more sane and logical thing to do.

Just like my father, I dreamed of driving a Toyota but I cannot own one because I have other “upcoming” commitments.

Perhaps, my children will buy me one.

Don't WhatsApp /SMS when driving

This morning, we received news that one of Jane's classmate passed away after fighting for her life for 4 days. She was cycling in her A...