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Showing posts from January, 2005

The week before CNY

As I was waiting for my yee mien at lunch this afternoon, it occurred to me that it has been a pretty quiet CNY this year. Upon reflection, year 2004's CNY was quiet too. Is something going on?

I remember during the teenage years that the weeks before CNY would be filled with trips to Sungai Wang or Lot 10 or 1 Utama for New Year shopping and gatherings. I would be shopping for new clothes as the New Year demand new "everythings" from clothes to shoes. We would be hunting for the best bargain around town as our pocket money was pretty limited. Shall we go for a carrot-cut pants where the wider the pants the better. Or shall we go for that hip bright coloured shirt? What about hair cuts? Go for the more expensive pro or the student cut at Thomas & Guys? Decisions, decisions and decisions. These two weeks will also see people returning borrowed books and money to each other as it's a taboo to owe anyone anything during the New Year. Old debts must be settled before…

Loud Women

Why must my sister screams when she speaks? I mean, when she talks, she's like at this noise level that makes a Hell's Angel motorcyclist blush. It is so high pitched and loud that it hurts my ears. She claims it is her normal volume. She says that she could not help it. That's how she speaks and I have to bear it. I say bullshit - how come you talk to your boyfriend on the phone, your voice is so low that it mades Joey sound loud on the phone! (Joey loves to "boil porridge" (talk on phone) with his friends and he could talk for hours and no one would notice because he would whisper - imagine a quiet office environment and no one knew he was on the phone for hours! Amazing feat, that).

The 3 women in my house are like the 3 Sopranos. When they talk, I think it's a Richter 9 Earthquake scale! No rooms can shut out the noise. And this is "normal conversation". Wait till you hear my mother sings or when she speaks on the phone!

People say that you can g…

Miss Saigon

Kimmikanuyi, Monica and I went to GSC for Phantom of the Opera (again!) a few Tuesdays ago. Since the girls have not experienced the highly priced, high class, leather reclining seats, we decided to see it in the GSC Gold Class cinema. This is my 3rd time in a Gold Class (first time was a free ticket to a forgetable show courtesy of Limacs; second time was seeing LoTR: Return of the King).

The movie was so good Monica claimed that she was "cried a few times." LOL.

On the way back Monica and I talked about the first musical we went to see. That was back in October 2001 in Singapore. They were showing Miss Saigon at that time. Greedy was in Singapore and she invited us to spend the night at her brother's apartment.

So ringgit and 3 other beautiful girls (kimmikanuyi, Monica and Emily) took a Nice bus to SG. We were very impressed with Nice. Not only did they use the 2nd link to Singapore (which cut our travel time by a good 30 minutes), they served food and drinks in the b…

Debbie Gibson

Read this!!!

Excerpt:
"Apparently, Debbie Gibson is trying to revive her electric youth.
The '80s pop phenom, whose hits included "Foolish Beat" and "Into Your Eyes," bares it all in the March issue of Playboy, which hits stands Feb. 11. The layout reportedly features a "well-defined, yet very sexy, feminine look" for Gibson and marks a departure from her squeaky-queen teen idol image of yore."
Aside from the wrong song quoted in the article - the author meant "Lost In Your Eyes", not "Into Your Eyes", I was pretty psyche up. Debbie Gibson was one of my divas, many years ago. She's like this teen-age pop star driving all the teens mad. Fans of Debbie Gibson hates Tiffany and vice versa. There was like this huge rivarly going on. It's so silly!
But now, it's like this whole childhood fantasy coming to reality!
On the other hand.. a 40 year old Debbie posing nude? COME ON!
Anyway, I am asking TaiLo to buy me Play…

A conversation with a German

I had my first encounter with a German last Friday. The story goes like this...

Many years ago, I went to London with anti-ringgit and we stayed at his Aunt ST's house. ST and her mother were very hospitable and welcomed me with open arms. I had a great time in London, getting to taste some home cooked food (her mother's loh pak kou is one of the best I have eaten!) After the holiday, we kept in touch via email. Every year, ST return to Malaysia with her mother, to visit their relatives and to escape from the chilling UK winter. I'd usually go for lunch or dinner with them - she loves the steamboat near my house.

This year, in addition to her mother, ST brought along a kwai poh friend. She said that she could finally tour Malaysia herself instead of just visiting relatives every year. ST also asked me to help her buy a notebook as it seems to be relatively cheaper in Malaysia and that she didn't really trust those e-bays dealers in UK.

Anyway, so I met up with her on F…

Baghdad Burning

Here's another blog that I stumbled upon on the weekend. It's called Baghdad Burning and is written by an educated (based on her English) girl who survived the war. It is horrifying to listen to the account of the war from a civilian point of view and not just from the pro-America media which is what we are normally exposed to. Do you know anyone who survived World War 2? Or the terrible May 13th event in Malaysia? Do you know anyone who could tell you what happened during British occupation of Malaya? I think listening to their war story is like reading this blog from an Iraqi. War is horrible. Occupation is cruel. I can't imagine it happening in my times.

CNY Reunion

It’s 2.33am on a Friday morning. I don’t have to go to work the following day because it is a Malaysia public holiday. We are celebrating a Muslim holiday called Hari Raya Haji (aka Eid el Adha. You can read about the significance of this holiday in miloflamingo’s blog). I just had a few beers and some wine and some of Starbuck’s iced latte so I am totally wide awake and in the still of the night, with the whole family asleep (boy, I love these quiet and peaceful nights, listening to my favourite songs), I thought I should put down today’s event in my blog.

My friends and I met for our yearly reunion party before Chinese New Year. We tried to arrange for one gathering each year – just to catch up with our old friends or with existing friends. Unfortunately, the ones that attended today were the friends that we meet almost every month. The others could not make it. So who attended? There’s Daniel. I have known him for 25 years. We were in the same class, Standard 1A, in Methodist Boys …

Picasa2

Picasa by Google, the greatest (and FREE) photos organizing software has an update.
Version 2 is now available for download. Get it.

A couple of enhancements that I really like:
1. Ability to put a star in your photos (just like Gmail) to mark your favourites
2. It will auto rotate pictures that are supposed to be in potrait mode (vs landscape). The beauty of it is that Picasa knows which picture should be rotated! It's amazing! It's like they can read and understand the photos!!

Asian Values

I received 5 tickets for The Sound of Music today. 2 of them were for kimmikanuyi's colleague. The remaining 3 are for my sisters and her boyfriend. These tickets were reserved using kimmikanuyi's colleagues' maxis one card - by which we were able to enjoy discount on the tickets. So there I was, holding the 5 tickets and my first instinct was to check the floor plan so I can choose the best seats for my sister. But before my finger can click the webpage I stopped myself. Why am I so kiasu? What happens to the values my parents taught me so many years ago - that the guests or friends should be given a priority treatment. Isn't these Asians values something our forefathers are so proud of? The very same values that do not exist in the Western world? I should show some courtesy to the colleague for using her card. She should have priority seating. At any rate, it dawns upon me that I have lost touch of these simple values in today's ultra modern, dog-eat-dog world. A…

NewsGator Online

I read a lot of blogs these days. It is a chore to use Netscape to go to each blog hoping for an update. I wish there is some sort of "blog program" just like an email program where I can, at a glance, see which of my favourite blogs is updated.

Thankfully, such a program exist. It is called a newsreader. Usually they are a standalone program like Outlook Express where it will automatically connect to the web and grab all this blog updates, called feeds. However, these standalone programs are not free.

Fortunately, this particular standalone program, called NewsGator, offers an online version. The best thing about the online version is that it is free! All I need to do is sign up for a free account and add all my favourite blogs as a feed and voila, I get an Explorer like navigator on the left, showing in brackets, how many unread posts (refer to graphic above). At a glance I can see whose blog has new updates! I am waiting for a widget that will do the same thing for Konfab…

iProduct

Hilarious!!!


Return of Konfabulator

This picture is a true representation of the power of Konfabulator. I have it installed in my notebook which has higher screen resolution so I have more "screen-estate" to play around.

Some new stuff.. I have two picture frames instead of one. The left picture frame shows photos from my Egypt trip while the right will display USA photos. They change every 5 minutes so everytime I press F8, I see new pictures. Niceee..

I have a battery gauge (bottom left, the one in green). Beside it is a WiFi strength indicator. Then I have the recycle bin followed by a CPU usage. There's also a To-Do list.

Rude Malaysians Contest

mystic_grey pointed me to this contest run by The Star ==> Click Me.
Go vote.

It occurs to me that somebody actually asked me how much I earn in public. And I don't even know this somebody. He's a friend's friend. I met him that night because he was with my friend in a mamak. So we had some small talk and he said he's been working for 3 years and then started asking how much I earn after working 8/9 years. I danced around the issue but it never occurred to me that that question is considered offensive and rude. Hmmm... NOW I KNOW!

Konfabulator

My dear readers,

You know I only recommend cool software to you. I have recommended Netscape or Firefox for tabbed browsing, iTunes for your best music experience, Blogger, Hello+Picasa for managing your photos and Notes Buddy. Today, please say hi to Konfabulator.

Please take a look at my Desktop below running Konfabulator.

My desktop showing Konfabulator in action. Notice how it dimmed my current workspace (IE browsing my own blog) to show all the active widgets.

Konfabulator allows you to put small programs called widgets on your desktop. If you looked at my desktop, I have Konfabulator with all these little widgets. They are, top left to bottom right: a widget showing a chrome clock a widget showing a calendar real time weather updates (of Luxor) a photo frame that shows photos from My Picture folder - it changes every 5 minutes for new photos. Currently, the photo frame is showing a photo of my trip to Giza, Egypt, with Pyramid of Khafre as backdrop.a GMail notifier, which will c…

Hog

I have this colleague. He's a nice guy. Soft spoken, mind his own business, the likes. But there's something about him that always grates on my nerves. He has this, um, really kiasu attititude. The best way to describe his kiasu-ness is this: he is someone who wants everything even though it doesn't need it nor does it interest him. He's the person who doesn't read but still wanted the whole Lord of The Rings pdf books because he just want to feel good "owning it". If I were to ask if he knows who Gandalf is, he'll probably look at you with eyes wide and a blank face.. but yeah, he still insist that I sent him the 12MB pdf.

When another friend and I discussed about how great iTunes is, he asked us to send him the program but I know he won't install or try it. He just wanted to have it.

He wants all of my mp3 though he only listen to Cina songs and can't understand English songs. I, of course, will not give him the mp3. My mp3 are my backups fr…

Need vs Indulgence

A lot of my long time reader will probably know how much I yearn for an iPod. And yet, after months of yearning, I have not made any purchases. Why? The reason is simple - I don't need it. This is a music player. Where can I use it? I work on a notebook during the day and I have iTunes installed in it. I get to listne to all my favourite tunes. On my way from work to home, I have my car stereo, which I hardly use these days because it only takes me 15 minutes to commute. Once I am home, I have iTunes on my PC with a good sound system. When I am in my bed reading, I have my Sony Mezzo Hi Fi system. The only place I could find use of an iPod is when I am in the toilet doing business and I don't think that justify a RM1K purchase (LOL.. I am joking). So you see, it really is a question of need vs indulgence. The heart says go get it.. it is what you wanted.. the brain says it's going to be a white elephant, I betcha - you are going to dump it in your cupboard one of these day…

The making of LoTR

Everytime I watched The Making of Lord of the Rings in the Extended DVD, I develop this sense of envy. I would ask myself why I feel this way and I would realize that these people in the movie - these artists, editors, composers, actors, directors, stuntmen, etc. - they have a sense of pride about their work and accomplishment. They toiled 4 to 5 years on the project, some worked for 7 years on this show and at the end of the day, there is a sense of pride. There is an end result. There is something to tell people about. And I envy them.

I have been doing my current job for almost 3 years. The nature of the job is such that there is nothing "concrete" to show at the end of the day. We helped people when they faced specific problem during the development of their application. But we don't know what the end result is. We don't see the finished product. Day in, day out, week in, week out.. it is just pure operational support work. There is no sense of achievement. There…

I want!

Power Failure

Central and southern Malaysia has a power failure today. This includes important areas like Cyberjaya, Kuala Lumpur, Petaling Jaya, Subang Jaya, etc. Nobody can do any work unless the building has a generator. I ate in KFC. They only have like limited chicken left as they can't cook. There's no power to serve us soft drink. We can only buy can drinks. There's no aircond but thankfully it was still cool in the restaurant.

I called home. My area was not affected though, thank God for that!

At any rate, this is really embarrassing. The power came back after 3 hours downtime. 3 hours! Imagine the amount of ringgit lost.

Ross si teh Winnar!

I have removed the poll. Thanks to all my 5 readers who voted. Ross is the most popular friends with 60% votes ;)

Today I saw Season 8. In one episode, he found out that condom works 97% of the time - there is a 3% failure rate and he could not believe it - they should put it in the box. It should be in BOLD!!!

HAHAHAHA...

Books

To my delight, the books that I ordered online from Kinokuniya arrived today. Yay! More books to read before bed. Online shopping is not very popular here in Malaysia but kudos for Kinokuniya for offering this service. The delivery fee is not expensive - RM6 per parcel. Mind you, this is for courier service (by this company called GDExpress). I thought it was reasonable - for me to go into KLCC - the parking itself cost me RM5! Now I can buy books in the comfort of the office/house and get it couriered the next day! The packaging was excellent too. My books were shrinkwrapped, then wrapped with those "bubbly" thingy and rewrapped again on the "bubbly" thingy one more time before putting into GDExpress envelope. No fear of dog ears or scratches.

As I was opening my package, my father said that all of a sudden, the cramp on his hands were gone. I said of course la, God's blessing mah. He's like, real or not? Mom laughed and said to me "you believed also …

amazon.com

Today I spent a few hundered ringgit buying a few TV series from amazon.com. There's sale you see, and I could not resist. I need help.

It's madness.. A few hundered ringgit on DVDs. I mean, it's ok if it were 20 or 30 ringgit instead of US$20 or US$30. But after conversion it became hundreds of ringgit. That hundreds of ringgit could be a monthly income of some families.. used to feed the young. And I blew it in DVD.

Malaysia currency sucks! One can't buy anything anymore! It's just too expensive!

Memories are made of these...

It's 7 pm and I am waiting to go home. I have an hour to kill so I fired up iTunes and went to the Music Store. I clicked on the Billboard Top 100. Hmm.. which year should I choose? Let's see, 1991, during the beginning of Form 6.

I started previewing some of the songs in the 1991 Billboard Top 100 and I was suddenly hit, full blast in the brain, with memories of that time: Wilson Philips, Mariahh Careeeyy (pheeeet! pheeet! My divaaaaaaaaaa!), Roxette, Firehouse, Scorpions, Guys Next Door, Tracie Spencer, Vanilla Ice, Bette Midler, Mr Big... wow...

I still remember my black Sony Walkman. I'd gather all these cassettes before going to school or going to tuition. You see, to commute from my house to KL for tuition is a 1-2 hours bus ride. Worse, if there's traffic jam. The commute was pretty boring and lots of CO2 to fill your lung. Therefore it was always a joy to have a Walkman around at that time and you can just shut out all the noise from the traffic and just float to…

w00t!

I finally received LoTR and Friends Season 8 today!
Best email of the day:
"Dear ringgit,

We have received a box of parcel, from AMAZON.COM on behalf of you. Please advise us on the collection or delivery arrangement, thank you.

Regards,

Mailman"

Woo hoo!!! Even though it just hit me that I am 32 this year, nevertheles, Friends and LoTR will keep me happy for a week.... :) I am smiling.. I am smiling now!

Buying Biscuits

I think I am losing my mind. Today Bonnie is on evening shift. She sent me an instant message at 10am asking me if it is ok for her to come in late. The reason is that she wanted to buy biscuits so she can eat them in the afternoon.

Earlier, two colleagues could not come in at 8 and was 15 minutes late - one could not wake up on time and is now stuck in the traffic. The other did not give a reason.

Then another girl had to go to the bank at around 9.30am because her husband did not have enough money to pay the doctor. So she has to transfer money from one account to the other so her husband can withdraw them.

Another guy called to say his son is sick so he has to come in around 12.30 (he's one evening shift too. He said that he will take his son to see doctor, have his lunch and come in)

All this makes "buying biscuits" sound really lame so I said no to Bonnie. I told her she could buy earlier before she come to work (which is true isn't it? Why can't you leave h…

Ghey

This reminds me of certain individuals in the company and it is highly disturbing for me to hear this. Why oh why indeed! How can any man suck another man's dick is beyond me. Brrrrrrrrrr... yet, what are those things you hear about men being closer to each other (not sexually) because they have more things in common.. such as interest, emotions (or lack of i.e. do not have to deal with the Bonnie-like outburst), the kinship, etc? Are those really "brotherhood love" or there's more to it?

What about the ladies? They have some "women" love too. Are they lesbians too?

So perhaps the gays/lesbians are more bolder because they come out of the closet while perhaps other men/women are just suppressing it?

Do I even have a point to make it? Nevermind. Just don't let me catch you (men) staring at me! I am a known ghey basher you know.

*New* Poll - Friends

Like all things in life, we started out pure and then we include additions into our lives. Additions can be good or bad. I have put in Polls as an addition into my "still pure at the moment" blog. So, don't say my blog is boring k?

Current question is "Who is your favourite F.r.i.e.n.d.s?". Vote away. You can comment here why you chose the Friend.

I chose Ross. In my opinion, he's the funniest of all. Friends will not be as funny without him. All his antics are memorable - the time he discovered, from his apartment, Monica making out with Chandler; or he becoming the referee when Chandler/Joey challenged Monica/Rachel and won the girls apartment; or when he started wearing leather pants because it's New Year and he wanted to do one new thing a day; or when he laughed at Joey because he couldn't remember all the States of America and claimed that he's educated (unlike Joey) only to find out that he was not able to recall all the States too!

What…

RoTK

How come my package from amazon.com have not arrived? I mean, DroolMan and Ai Jai already received theirs and we shipped at the same time? How come every year I am the last to receive and I am actually the biggest fan!

And I have Friends Season 8 in the package. I need Friends to cheer me up when I am down.

Come on amazon.com.. DON'T LET ME DOWN!

Breakfast

I'm not sure anyone would agree with me but breakfast is the most important meal of the day - not just scientifically (well, science will tell you that a healthy meal should made up of a heavy breakfast, light lunch and dinner.. or something like that. I am no scientist! but you get my gist) but also psychologically. I had a crappy breakfast two days ago. The nasi lemak I bought had too much sambal. The red oil from the sambal was all over the rice and it looks really gross. So I ate half of the nasi lemak, took my Nescafe and left. My whole morning was wrecked. Things didn't work, notebook refused to start from hibernation and had to be rebooted, the paper coffee cup leaked.. practically a "Murphy's Law" day. The damn nasi lemak gave me stomach ache too!

I also believe that the best experience of human relationship is sowed at the breakfast table. Before I moved to this new house, I used to break fast with my mother, twice a week. She would wake me up at 7 and I…

1st Day at Work

7 early 8 early, my Proton car window failed to work. It went down and didn't want to come up. Proton car owners all over the world is now looking at the sky and sighing "Proton!!!" . Ai.. what to do? Made in Malaysia mah.

I had my peer review. Strangely, Bonnie, did not "teach me a lesson." Hmmmmmmm... Overall, very good feedback from 14 people. Boss was impressed :P

Maybe I'm a natural born leader. LOL thinking about this! Ha ha..

Finally, it seems that ALL my readers hated the new template. For the first time in my hundred of posts, all of you provided comment on the same topic! Amazing. But I will not yield to all these temptations to change. White is good. White is pure.. Do not try to taint it, you evil people you! :P

Edit:
After I published this blog, my choice of words, "1st Day at Work" struck me. I still remember my first day at work in this company. I came to the office around 8am. I am supposed to go to the reception to meet my manager…

New Slate

My blog has a new look. I love the old template, Tic Tac Blue, but the new year demands a new change. I have opted for a clean template. No frills, no nice decorations, no nice graphics.

Like my template, I hope to start this new year with a clean slate too. No grudge against Bonnie. No prejudices with people and things. Let the old dogs lie. Let go of any burden I am carrying.

I pray that I have the strength to do this though.

Let the new year begins!

Old Age

Mystic_Grey, a dedication to you, based on your post:


So cheer up.. It's all in the mind :)

Traditional Games

I spent this afternoon entertaining this "aunt" from Perth. I put her in quotes because she's not really blood relatives but she's still close to the family. Her visit reminded me of my past.

When I was a small boy, I grew up in this place called Kolam Air. I spent almost half of 15 years of my life there. My parents had a full time job, so my sisters and I were put into this distant cousin's house where she can look after us. The school bus would drop us here in the afternoon and we'd do our homework, have our lunch, watch TV and take afternoon naps there.

Every evening, I'd beg for 20 sen so I can walk towards this small shop and buy junk food. The shop is around 5 minutes walk away but one had to go through back alleys and small lanes to get there. There's no tar road at that time in villages like this - it's just dirt lanes. The shop is really a kind of shed. Inside there is an arcade machine (Space Invaders?) which I was extremely fascinated wi…

Countries I have visited...

Let's start 2005 with some comic relief

This comic strip was taken without permission from http://www.pvponline.com . PVP is a comic about the gaming industry. I love reading PVP. This particular strip reminds me of the Turkish hat I wore when I was in Egypt. Feel the power!! Rarrrrrrrr!