Monday, 31 December 2001

This is the final blog for year 2001!! My new year resolutions are already in place (ready for implementation) and plans already set for 1st Jan 2002! We are going to go painting and blading tomorrow!! :)

Just checking around a little bit to find out what everyone is doing (everyone is really sneaky about where they are going to be counting down and what they are going to be doing.. umm.. :p ... will be interrogating all the guilty-looking people tomorrow... hee hee :)) Hope everyone is going to be with people they like/love/do-not-hate tonight... its been a difficult year... :( another couple just broke up less than 24 hours ago... sigh.... 2002.. What will the new year bring? no one knows.... me? oh. planning to go and stuff face with yummy local fare (makansutra stuff) for dinner before the year ends and then go on "healthier" (i.e. not entirely healthy but maybe cutting out unnecessary saturated fats etc) diet plus loads of exercise only next year. :p

Bye Bye 2001!!! Hello 2002!! :O

Sunday, 30 December 2001

ARTICLE: Birth Order and Personality: 8 Facts that Might Suprise You

ARTICLE: Sex and Birth Order: How Yours Affects Your Bedroom Behavior

ARTICLE: What Your Birth Oder Means for Your Marriage
Cool, huh?? :)

My birthday is coming!! :P Don’t panic don’t panic!! Bought myself two early birthday presents yesterday – a transparent Nokia 3310 handphone cover (makes my phone look quite ‘lian’ now with really bright flourescent lights) and a pair of really smooth, ultra cool Salomon inline skates (80mm wheels/ABEC 5/Aluminium frame/Shock Absorber) in shades of blue from shop in East Coast Park! Never had so much fun blading before – whizzed along feeling the wind in my hair and past all the slow bladers on their $80 Ultrawheel blades from Carrefour.. hahahaha…. Think I will make regular inline skating my seventh New Year Resolution:

7. Regular rollerblading at East Coast – on either every Fri or Sat (depending on my off day) – if you want to join me , gimme a call or sms! :)

Attended a cosy candlelight house party yesterday (post Christmas-pre New Year – what you might describe as “New Year’s Eve Rehearsal Party”) – stuffing face with yummy home-made Shepherd’s Pie, potato salad, chicken wings, cold cuts of ham & salami, and ribs from Cold Storey – downed with copious amounts of red & white wines and sangria (yes! two days in a row!) . Slightly intoxicated, we made our way to scare ourselves silly with excellent midnite movie The Others. Really excellent.. and Nicole Kidman was really good too.. don't miss it..

What a fun day :)

Saturday, 29 December 2001


Kai & I had the yummiest Spanish tapas and sangria at Ocho Restaurant And Tapas Bar at Chjimes just now after work. The sizzling garlic beef tapa and sauteed mushroom tapas were simply heavenly!!! Plus the sangria was the best I've had so far (and I've had..*burp*.. quite a few before :p)

just met up with "long-lost" friend (haven't seen for six months) for supper over lethal combination of Tiger Beer & D24 durian (old grandma tale dictates that the beer + durian combination can kill.. i'm still here...unless.. this is my final blog... (gulp!).. WATCH THIS SPACE!! Just read online: "This combination apparently creates what the Chinese like to call "internal wind" But for the King of Fruits, it’s more like an internal typhoon"... umm...

anyhow, we encountered two really bizarre events on our way back - firstly, when we went back to his car which was parked in the open-air carpark, we found it almost totally covered with bird-poo on the front and back windscreens, bonnet and boot! It was the worst case of bird-poo attack I've ever seen in my life! And strangely enough, there was none on the roof of the car!! So eerie! Secondly, we encountered at least three separate instances of accidents involving car pile-ups in this single night! One of them was so bad that we counted at least 10 cars involved!! umm...

btw: Check out my new Buttercup wrist watch!

Friday, 28 December 2001

saw this advert in the MRT for the website for the Second Link and actually went to look at it.. do you think there is anyone else out there more "bo-liao" than me?? :p Actually, I was just really curious what I could find on the site.. I mean.. is the site also "e-commerce enabled" to allow visitors to buy "I Love The SecondLink" baseball caps and umbrellas?? maybe.... haha.. now you have to click on the above link to find out!! you can also click on this second link... err.... no pun intended... :p
brrr... the weather has turned amazingly cold and wet and rainy.. so much so that now almost everyone is saying that it is "not like Singapore" anymore... been going around with winterly jackets and may soon be putting on gloves and scarf! :p Met Service says our temperature is now between 23 to 27 degree celsius! wow! Never quite had weather like this before - as one of my depressed friend says "the sky is raining as heavily and continuously as her heart".. :( ... Number of friends and associates in "emotional turmoil" continues to balloon... wonder if there is a bizarre correlation between low temperatures and cold hearts??? aahhhh :O gave Kai this really depressing website to look at today - not sure why.. no evil intent.. I think I just wanted her to know that she was not "alone in the Universe" If you are experiencing some kind of relationship up & down at the moment, this site should mean something to you...look at the archives especially.. be forewarned.. it is pretty depressing...

had authentic Yakitori dinner at Nanbantei Restaurant in Far East Plaza just now.. yummy!! but really expensive.. every 2 sticks of beef/chicken/pork/seafood/vege lightly salted and grilled expertly over charcoal fire costs between $5 to $18!! The chef will prepare and cook the food right in front of you and serve you. Nice atmosphere but not a good place to bring friends with hearty appetites unless you want to burn a hole in your pocket or leave unsatisfied.

Wednesday, 26 December 2001

are you one of the "growing number of people (probably now in the majority)" who don't even make New Year's resolutions? Are you one of the many who say "why make them since experience has also taught us that we will break them anyway, "so what's the point?"" Besides, not making the resolutions will enable you to avoid the "negative spiral of guilt, failure and de-motivation that making resolutions and consistently breaking them creates". Ya?

Here's a little something from Tony Buzan's Head Strong:

.. (considering) how the brain builds up its thinking patterns and probabilities for repetition, thought and action, think about what the non-resolution-maker is actually thinking: "I am not going to make New Year's resolutions because, if I do, I will break them." This thought is repeated, in various ways, both consciously and subconsciously: "I am not going to make New Year's resolutions because I am the kind of person who will break them; I am not making New Year's resolutions because, when I do, I break them; there is no point in a person like me making New Year's or any other resolutions to improve myself, because I am the kind of person who, when I make good resolutions, breaks them; I don't make New Year's resolutions because when I do I break them because my will is not strong enough nor my self-control great enough to make them come true..."..

This, according to Tony Buzan, is a disastrous thing called "Meta-Negative Thinking Habit" that, the more and more it grows, actually and physically decreases the possibility that its owner will make any resolutions to improve at any time and will convince them that both their bodies and brains are out of control, and that growing weakness and overall decline are inevitable...

wah... betcha didn't know it was so serious... :P
je táime ewedeshanno aishite-imasu te amo ‘oku ou ‘ofa ‘iate koe aloha phlâwt-rák jag älskar dig ich liebe dich i raakastan sinua te quiero saghapa amo-te ti amo i love you ....

The language of love is the real language of the world. In some ways we all need to hear the words “I love you” but there are at least two schools of thoughts on this theory. One is the school which says to say it often, or as much as you can, or at least not to waste an opportunity to tell someone that you love them. The other school says to use these three words sparingly, and that it renders them without meaning if you use them all the time. The truth probably lies somewhere in between: in any case, it is all a question of degree. Telling someone you love them when you have only known them a short while may not be as intensely meaningful as telling a long-term partner or your parents. The point is that “I love you” has as many meanings as there are moments – or individuals – and understood in this way we should all be free to express our individual version a lot more. There’s no power in holding back and waiting for the other person to ‘crack first’. Not telling someone you love them could be one of the things you end up regretting all your life. Real power goes tot whoever is able to communicate love. As it is often said, ‘an ocean refuses no river’. The words ‘I love you’ are meant to be used – they’re among the best ones we have. Don’t wait too long. – from Girlosophy2 – The Love Survival Kit

Just had a wonderful 2 hour plus phone conversation with dear friend from the UK (the phone bills!! :O ) and realised how much has changed since the last time we chatted on the phone. It's funny how events in the year tend to speed up as the year comes to a close. Looking back, I can hardly remember what happened in the first half of the year! umm....

Tuesday, 25 December 2001

new year resolutions.. ahh...It’s the time of the year again when we reflect on the 12 months that have just passed. For many of us, this year has been incredibly intense, very exciting, definitely enjoyable, full of lessons learnt and emotions felt. For many of us (me included) this year can be described as having been rather unpredictable. Most of us felt the effect of the much dreaded “Quarter Life Crisis” and helped each other along even as we clung onto our own crutches or partners. The economic uncertainty made career switching less attractive so most of us hung on to what we had (except for the couple of brave souls who ventured out on their own). While some relationships were cemented with vows of marriage and some new ones were born :), there were those that faltered and fizzled out :( and also those that collapsed and now hung on uncertain. Some of us wished we had manuals to teach us how to handle the many difficult decisions we had to make.. but there were none.. we were left to our own devices and the support of Faith and friends. Many of us also put ourselves through some rigorous tests in creativity, learning random stuff from painting to dancing to languages and taking trips to odd places (e.g. me to Goa).. In short, the year has been memorable in its own way..

have decided on a couple of new year resolutions…
1. to participate in every race/charity run that comes up in the year
2. to more openly appreciate the people close to me
3. to strengthen my connection to my family
4. to be more generous
5. to write a book
6. to allow God a more constant and definite place in my life

.. more coming up soon…. share yours with me the next time I meet you, ok? :)
Two Great Quotes

"One of the key tools for a long-term relationship - a common purpose. If you both agree at a conscious level that the purpose of your relationship is to create an opportunity, not an obligation - an opportunity for growth, for full self expression, for lifting our lives to their highest potential, for healing every false thought or small idea you ever had about you, and for ultimate reunion with God through the communion of your two souls - if you take that vow instead of the vows you've been taking - the relationship has begun on a very good note. It's gotten off on the right foot. That's a very good beginning." - from Conversations with God (Vol 1)

"When I loved myself enough, I could remember during times of confusion, struggle or grief, that these too are part of me and they too deserve my love." - from When I Loved Myself Enough by Kim McMillen
Got giant-sized Buttercup, girlosophy 2 - The Love Survival Kit and a humblebox easel for Christmas!! Wow wow wow!! :) had two separate Christmas gatherings – one yesterday with best pals from Sec School clique and another one today with some people from work. Two absolutely different gatherings in terms of setting, feel and crowd but equally warm, tingly and filled with good Christmas spirit.

The Christmas gathering and gift exchange session with long-time (10 to 13 years!! Yeah!) friends from Sec school has become almost a tradition for the group. However, this year, all of us felt something was different.. for one, the crowd was smaller (with fewer other-halves) than previously. Instead of the usual feasting, we also celebrated it over only some 2-for-1 California pizzas, bbq chicken wings, instant noodles (yes, instant noodles), some red wine and a simple but yummy log cake. We still laughed and joked as much as before but now we also shared philosophical quotations on love and relationships – really feels like we have all gone through tremendous maturing over only the one year that just passed.. it’s almost unbelievable… the gift exchange was also filled with much meaning as we went around the table appreciating the thoughtful gifts we got from each other (i.e. no chocolates).. all in all, it felt a lot more solemn but really meaningful..

Gathering this evening was a more elaborate affair – with nice table settings, delectable sliced beef and turkey, and meticulously prepared salads, salmon, cheese and crackers, and quality red wine. Kinda joined a sort of family gathering but wonderful host put us all at ease to enjoy the feast fit for kings..nice… :) got to learn a lot about entertaining at home from her...

Sunday, 23 December 2001

Humour Singapore Politics - Why Did The Chicken Cross The Road?
met up with a friend and ex-colleague for coffee club coffee (and brownie with ice cream!! :)) last night and had a refreshing change of discussion topic from what I have been caught up with for the past week or so (i.e. relationships, relationships, relationships :p). By some strange chance, she has been (sort of) roped into the Young PAP (i.e. the Young People's Action Party) and is now joining them often for one of their discussion groups. I actually find this really quite exciting 'cos ironically, even though "associating yourself with PAP'" has always been taken as "conformity" (check out article)or worse still "apathy", I personally feel the exact opposite about it. To me, to dare to stand up and say that you are "aligned with policies of the ruling party" but "have views about it" is almost taboo among young people of my age group who want to look "cool" and "non-partisan" or "just want to stay out of politics" (which is even more apathetic, in my view). I know (just as well as anyone else out there - taxi drivers included) that Singapore politics isn't perfect - however, I've always believed that if change has to come, it has to come from within the ruling party and probably from the younger members - for the simple reason that the cream of the crop, the brightest of the cohort, have already been snapped up by the party anyway and for the opposition (for all their admirable efforts) to make even a bit of dent in the existing structure will still take a while (with all the "odds" stacked up against them). Since I believe that if you have the cream of the lot of the 20-somethings, there is no way they will sit there and not express their views. change (if necessary) is in fact more possible and likely to happen from being involved in the party, than if you are outside of the party and yelling and protesting (or worse stil just sitting in cafes and grumbling..)

Saturday, 22 December 2001

amazing big breakfast at tiong bahru market this morning - stuffed face with famous (and incredibly expensive and rude) chwee kueh, assorted dim sum from equally famous tiong bahru pow and snack stall, chye tow kueh, etc etc etc downed with large mugs of soya bean drink.. burp! couldn't eat till dinnertime..

spent most of today at home sorting out and mounting slides of trip to Goa - quite pleased with results :) not National Geographic standard yet (far from it!) but got a couple of good portrait shots and got the lighting right mostly (I think)..quite inspired to carry on with slides and also to try out b&w film.. maybe just try out couple of rolls on people around me.. like mum cooking and colleagues working.. umm...
gerbil stare

played with friend's pair of gerbils yesterday - they are so cute!! not very interactive but i feel they are 10 times better than mice and 5 times better than hamsters :) they are really the most adorable creatures you can find (especially if you look at them from the front - as in pic above). SA, don'tever check out this wonderful Flash site by Joe Cartoon - he does really bizarre (but outrageously funny) things to the Flash cartoon cousins of your favourite Itsy & Bitsy.. started Christmas shopping only yesterday (talk about last minute :p) - the streets are getting really crowded and people are frantically snatching things off the shelf, almost without care what they are buying..quite scary.. had dinner of Make-Your-Own Pasta at Bugis Sketchers yesterday.. found that I am not a good pasta designer.. they are really clever... you can't really complain about their cooking cos you are the one who decided what should go into it.

realised yesterday after talking to alb that I have always felt inferior in a sort of way (I know it sounds quite unbelievable - what with my big ego and all) and he told me something really wonderful and touching.. that the only way for me to love myself is to think that I am worth other people loving me... wow! thanks.. :)

Friday, 21 December 2001

This is really funny!! The Single Man's Guide to TV Dinners - see especially the box pictures... hahaha...
Something really ironical happened to me today - was late at meeting up with a friend at 6.45pm cos I had accidentally taken the MRT in the wrong direction after work (ending up at Kallang when I meant to head to Clementi). Reason was: I was absorbed and distracted by a book on Time Management I was reading.. haha.. :) anyway, found a really funny and good quote inside on how many of us habitually put off doing what we need to do by doing other trivial time-wasting tasks:

I've dusted my desk and I've wound up my watch,
I've tightened (then loosened) my belt by a notch,
I've polished my glasses, removed a small speck,
I've looked at my check stubs to check out a check,
I've searched for my tweezers and pulled out a hair,
I've opened a window to let in some air,
I've straightened a picture, I've swatted a fly,
I've looked for a book and I've straightened my tie,
I've sharpened each pencil till sharp as a dirk...
I've run out of reasons for not starting work.

- Anonymous
Came up with a couple of enlightening thoughts today - realised that many of us are constantly finding ourselves slaves to two main things - Time and Money. The idea behind learning how to manage the two is really actually about learning how to manage ourselves in order to accomplish our goals within whatever of each of the two is available. Time and human behaviour mix together in amazing ways - if we allow a lot or a little time for a job, it will probably take whatever time we're allowed anyway. If we want to be able to attain mastery over time, hence, we must learn to get more done in less time. The key to this is to carefully consider just how long it actually takes to do the job, and then not budget a single second more than that... You can then find yourself freed up to do a lot of other things. Money and human behaviour work together interestingly too - if we allow ourselves to be delighted by money (or to be consumed by material things), we find that we can never have enough of money. If however, we give it away generously and learn to manage our material expectations, we will find ourselves no longer bound by the hunger and perceived need for it. We then find ourselves masters over money.. it's a really great feeling...
missed a day of blogging..umm... was suddenly struck by the wonder if there are people in this world who actually read my blog everyday as some kind of daily vitamin - edu-tainment kind of vitamin, if you must.. and they feel the deficiency whenever i don't blog.. :p

watched Lord Of The Rings last night and hilarious stand-up comedy duo Hark The Jingle Red-Nosed Chestnuts just now.. two simply brilliant shows. Didn't finish reading the book before the LOTR show :( but that might have just been as well 'cos then I didn't have any expectations and could enjoy all that it had to offer with a certain measure of surprise. The scenary in many of the scenes were really stunning (both New Zealand real ones - I want to go!! - and computer graphics fake ones) and the show had a wholesome blend of everything from romance to adventure to friendship, loyalty, fantastic costumes, special effects and quotable quotes.. Think it is hard to find fault with the movie unless you simply hate long shows (3 hours!!) or ugly monsters (which the show is packed with - orcs and trolls)..

Hark The Jingle Red-Nosed Chestnuts was unexpectedly enjoyable - coming from two brilliantly-talented local chaps, throwing together a rojak of a show that spoofs at everything from christmas songs, popular musicals (les miz), local drama serials (the war diary) and local fads (like karaoke and para para dancing) to even the nativity scene (which was really quite impressively witty) and their "politically-correct" version of "Silent Night").. in my humble opinion, at 27, these chaps have a great future ahead of them!

Wednesday, 19 December 2001

kinda surreal day today..felt connected to many people at many levels - some for the first time, some more deeply, some in new ways... found that there are no other times we can feel more human than when we are connecting with people... pretty amazing...

gathered more insight on human relations - especially on the "connection between two people" idea - while Kai and I were chatting today. Out of the blue, I realised that the strongest way two people feel connected to each other is not when they are together all the time, living, eating, doing stuff together.. instead, we only really feel connected to another person when we know we are feeling the same way about something or about each other.. for example, think about a long distance relationship. Very often, things are made much more bearable only because you know the other person is feeling the same way as you do or doing the same thing as you are (even reading the same book or listening to the same music). A pubescent teenager having a secret crush on another person will suddenly become interested in activities or hobbies that his/her subject of desire participates in as they suddenly feel a connection through doing the same. This is why we can sometimes feel so connected to some of our close friends when we meet them even after a very long time. On a more impersonal level, we can even say that this is why even complete strangers, when caught in a similar crisis (e.g. traffic jam, lift breakdown, or sharing the sorrow of being families of air crash victims) suddenly feel a certain strong bonding.

Conclusion: It is not physical proximity but emotional and intellectual affinity that really connects people..

I used to have a comfort zone where I knew I wouldn’t fail.

The same four walls and busywork were really more like jail.
I longed so much to do the things I’d never done before,
But stayed inside my comfort zone and paced the same old floor.

I said it didn‘t matter that I wasn’t doing much.
I said I didn’t care for things like commission checks and such.
I claimed to be so busy with the things inside the zone,
But deep inside I longed for something special of my own.

I couldn’t let my life go by just watching others win.
I held my breath; I stepped outside and let the change begin.
I took a step and with new strength I’d never felt before,
I kissed my comfort zone goodbye and closed and locked the door.

If you’re in a comfort zone, afraid to venture out,
Remember that all winners were at one time filled with doubt.
A step or two and words of praise can make your dreams come true.
Reach for your future with a smile; Success is there for you!

Author: Unknown


"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequte. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn't serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are born to make manifest the Glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us, it's in everyone, and as we let our light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."

Nelson Mandela
President, South Africa

Tuesday, 18 December 2001

Totally agree with Jennifer about blogging.. she says:

One of the points I see in blogging is to try to reach people, and to get them thinking and talking. And debating. Or arguing. I don't feel the need to reach thousands or millions (or even tens) of people. If I know I've touched just one person by something I've said, or introduced new possibilities to another, or made a connection with a delightful, intelligent, creative, or fascinating person whom without the Web I never would have heard of...It's worth it.
Quite an overwhelming day today – woke up really late for work after two late nights in a row. Hari Raya Day – shop filled with happy papas and mamas bringing children and babies… very festive-ey warm feeling… tis the season to be jolly… :)

Very philosophical day - spent almost all of office time talking to good friend with relationship woe (consider it part-work ‘cos have to help colleague sort out personal problem which can potentially affect her work performance : p). Concluded that the most important elements affecting all human relationships are three main things – Fear, Trust & Appreciation.

The best thing we can ever do for friends or any other people we love are to help them conquer their fears. Fears are like evil demons in everyone. We all have our own unique set of fears (some of which can actually be really silly – like one of my old ones which was the fear of sitting on a merry-go-round – I’ve since gotten over it.. really..). When we help people to get over their fears, we inspire in them new possibilities and rebuild their confidence in themselves.. which can be the greatest gift we can ever give them.. more than jewellery or chocolates or even money.. Unfortunately, the inverse is true – creating fear in people (either by being nasty or inconsiderate to them (like how we are sometimes to our parents), making them feel inferior or threatening them in any way, e.g. by messing up relationships or threatening breakups at every bad juncture) divides people and are terrible for relationships. Problem is, these fears that we create are usually done unintentionally and subconsciously, so in the end, we may even deny that we are the cause and blame the other party for it… yet more divide..
Trust, too, to a certain degree is essential for any human relationship to work. While we can’t go around trusting everyone, the loss of it between two individuals who are meant to have a close relationship (either mother and daughter, husband and wife, a dating couple etc), gradually or suddenly, will make it impossible for the relationship to carry on... when we start to doubt the other person’s ability or commitment or even things they say.. .. While nothing may have tangibly changed in the other person, trust can erode subconsciously in our own minds, making us suspicious and hurtful… eventually this divide starts to grow and before you know it, you no longer feel anything for the other person except resentment, anger or some other negative feeling.

Appreciation is about accepting and loving people as they are – what they look like, what they are capable of, what they do, what they say, their values and their beliefs. Its about loving their rhythm and constantly reminding them how wonderful they are. When two people first get together, it is easy to tell the other person how wonderful they are (because you truly think so!) Your eyes sparkle at things they say and your body language shows full acceptance for what and who they are. Then along the way, we begin to stop telling them these nice things. Next thing we know it, we begin thinking of changing these people. Little things start to annoy us and we forget why we loved them in the first place. In fact, we may even feel that telling them they look nice or whatever sound a little contrived and silly and we stop ourselves (even though these words are like vitamins that they need for daily nourishment in this world filled with criticisms and harsh words)…

Conclusion: Cherish the people you are with today.. 'cos they just may not be with you again tomorrow...

Monday, 17 December 2001

feeling a little restless and perturbed now cos everyone around me seems to be having relationship problems of one kind or another all of a sudden (!) - out of the blue.... it's either about one party saying the other can't make an adequate commitment to the relationship; or about how much space to give to each other... there are also woes about new people walking into existing shaky relationships, or old ex-es suddenly turning up in the cold, stirring up old unsettled passions... a lot of these problems also started when one or the other gets shaky feet when the issue of marriage comes up.... when they suddenly are faced again with the question of "Is this The One for me?"... while others are yet about how much of the old respect and inspiration they used to have from the other are now suddenly missing. ... .a lot of the friends i know who feel themselves "stuck" in these situations find the problems worsened by poor communication and minds clouded by emotional, physical and mental exhaustion.... sigh... it is so hard to be at our age...

i call this the "Age of Emotional Turmoil"..

Sunday, 16 December 2001

the continued high from my trip is making me lose the rhythm of daily blogging...

watched Ocean's Eleven yesterday - huge cast of good-looking, high-profiled Hollywood stars (George Clooney, Andy Garcia, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Julia Roberts etc) was merely a bonus to an otherwise already well-paced, well-scripted plot. Hugely enjoyable..go see..

still feeling a little detached from everything and everyone around me and trying (yet only half-heartedly) to settle back into the rhythm of life here again..deep in my heart, I know I wish I could still be there today, swimming and boogie boarding in the crystal clear ocean and having time to enjoy a leisurely breakfast and watching the beautiful sunrise every morning. Afternoons spent taking short excursions out to neighbouring villages and national parks, taking photographs, painting, reading, writing or kayaking out to see the beautiful falcons perched in half-submerged trees in the river estuary.... it was almost effortless reconnecting with my inner creative source; and reflecting; and getting inspired by nature ... in Goa, the laid back lifestyle is reflected in the faces of the peaceful and friendly natives and the smiling, waving children... here and there, you find epitomes of timelessness: tree roots wrapped around crumbling old walls, hardened-faced cattle herders guiding huge herds of majestic white bulls with perfectly-shaped horns to watering holes, farmers tending to their rice paddies.. in fact, time often stands still here... i found a certain serenity for my usual restless self through the predictability of routines and familiar faces... if you see a guy there today, you see him again tomorrow doing pretty much the same thing... it was funny how all these actually gave me a nice meditative calm when I was there and still continue to intoxicate me now as I think about my time there....

Friday, 14 December 2001

so.. i didn't manage to blog again until I got back to Singapore.. so much for false expectations and disappointed fans..i'm sorry.. i truely am.. :( guess my timings were really bad.. when i did find time to try the internet services, they were always really either "very busy" or "down".. so i spent my time drinking strawberry lassi and writing my offline journal instead, watching the bulls go by, mildly intoxicated by thck incense smoke and the buzzing of flies...

anyhow.. i'm back!! touched down in familiar Singapore (clean, green, modern, functioning, airconditioned) at 7.40am today and got whizzed back home by mummy and daddy in double time and then showered and slept for like eternity (which was actually only 30 mins). Still in a daze and in quite a high from the trip...

Tuesday, 4 December 2001

hello from goa!!! finally managed to get internet connection! autoroaming has proven to be annoyingly unreliable and this is probably the best way to stay in touch now until i can get to sms and to send a couple of emails. Will try to do that as soon as i can.. i promise..

feeling a little overwhelmed now with the whole experience of landing in India and coupled with a bad night of sleep waiting for 7 hours at the freezing domestic airport for the connecting flight to Goa. Goa is really beautiful.. just watched a really stunning sunset at Vagator beach (this really wide sandy beach with snowy fine sand) and friend brought me kayaking to this nearby island where we watched hundreds and thousands of seagulls take off above our heads.. very National Geographic.. also saw a rare Arabian white-breasted sea eagle (which my friend says is very endangered) flying over the beautiful harbour. Everything is so photogenic and life here is so laid-back

Ended night with yummy dinner at off-the-beaten-track Xavier restaurant of goan seafood (pomfret and crab), margarita and st miguel beer - slightly knocked me out.. got to head back now. Managed to find accommodation at sea-front resort overlooking stunning beach (promising "unforgettable" sunrise) and overlooking harbour of colourful floating fishing boats and scene of fluttering seagulls...

:) nice start to the trip (Daytime temp: 25 degrees celsius)

Sunday, 2 December 2001

I am Henry Kissinger!

Which Evil Criminal are You?

Fun Net Games: Check out Orisinal: Morning Sunshine
Kiss My Freckled Ass Goodbye: A research site for a book about quitting your job (really funny!)

finally finished packing for trip tomorrow.. err... later today... still have to get toothpaste, an extra camera battery (just-in-case), AA-sized batteries, phone charger from office and to borrow an adaptor from alb... maybe I don't actually need it but not very sure even after checking handy adaptor guide from yesterday's blog.

Moster, Inc. Sully & Mike

watched Monster, Inc. just now.. so cute!! Interesting storyline and characters and the graphics (especially Sully's fur) were really realistic.. quite impressive.. :)

more updates on our shadow cabinet :)

Saturday, 1 December 2001

Latest newsletter from Lonely Planet had a bunch of useful travel-related links:

For info on embassies and visa requirements.

For up-to-date currency conversions.

Gives a comprehensive rundown of events around the world.

Has constantly-updated info on cybercafe locations.

A neat little site with first-hand accounts of travel across the globe.

Has a very handy guide to electrical adaptors.
Just watched Lonely Planet on Discovery Channel and they showed Ian Wright (who has the best job in the world) in Madagascar! Lynn, are we still going there!? :)

Totally zonked out after busy day at shop yesterday, followed by excursion to the Night Safari (free ticket!) and then late night roti prata and tehcinno at famous Thasevi prata place at Jalan Kayu. Couldn’t really see the cute tarsiers but managed to check out all three of the walking trails - the Forest Giant Walk (on the suspension bridge over the primary rainforest that hardly felt “suspension”), the Fishing Cat Trail (where the furballs were actually fishing though they didn’t seem to catch anything – typical fishermen grouch : p) and the Leopard Trail (with the walk through the quite exciting “Mangrove Walk” – where you come literally face-to-face with giant sinister-looking fruit bats – they are the size of HDB stray cats! Quite scary). Promised myself to check up on these giant rodents called Capybaras. what you get when you cross hamsters and some large animal

Dropped by at the Bidadari Christian Cemetery yesterday after visiting a nearby school – just to see it again (this must be my 3rd or 4th visit) before they raze this beautiful place to the ground and replace it with some ugly modern construction. This place is really tranquil and some of the headstones are amazingly elaborate. See some pictures that I took. Go see it before its gone.

Other stuff… one of our staff lost her new Nokia 8250 at our shop – literally lost it under her nose as she left it carelessly on the worktable outside the office and walked away from it for a while to help customers – sigh, this is the fourth case of theft in our shop to-date. Can’t emphasize enough to them about taking care of their own possessions :( Caught the act on video through our CCTV (it was this late twenty something woman – typical office worker type – definitely a case of opportunism).. I’ll see if I can upload the "Wanted Criminal" image once I get the tape back from the police.

Friday, 30 November 2001

see our new Shadow Cabinet...

Finally got around to oil painting again after making a hundred and one excuses for putting it off till “tomorrow” – really felt good just blending and meshing the colours together and plonking them onto the canvas.. it’s so true what this one artist once said – that “the real purpose of painting is not to actually create a painting, but rather to achieve the certain feeling that one gets when painting” .. I know what he means..

busy day at the store… we put up a tiny ad in the papers yesterday for a “Full Time Retail Assistant”. It read: Join the team at a fun and exciting Art store! We are looking for someone eager to serve, friendly and pleasant, responsible, committed and willing to learn. And the response was overwhelming!! Spent almost the whole day either interviewing or picking up phone calls from people responding to the ad.. wow! what did we do right?? Didn’t we all just read in the papers that Singaporeans are still shunning service line jobs despite the downturn? This is the first time we are actually putting personality ahead of knowledge and qualification – and by the end of the day, we were seriously spoilt for choice with the huge number of suitable applicants :) goody goody…

Beadhub is selling this really interesting product called Art Clay which looks and feels and moulds like ordinary air-dried clay but transforms to silver when fired in a kiln! Wow! Pretty impressive but tiny 10g block costs something like $30! There is even a real gold one - can't imagine how much it would cost!

Thursday, 29 November 2001

oh no!!! I'm on the very popular dailybread!!! :p

Wednesday, 28 November 2001

just got feedback that the lesbianic, psychotic women I portrayed for my friend’s cousin’s TP project last month was “really really good!” ….umm … I don’t know… hahaha…

One customer gave me a huge cactus today! Add that to the other “presents” I’ve received so far - which include old jam jars, a commemorative phonecard, an antique lamp shade, a box of Lindt chocolates, and the one that definitely takes the hat – a giant old dried palm frond measuring at least a metre across (!) which got Kai exclaiming “what the f*** is that??” when she saw it being carried into the shop (by this sweet tiny 75-year-old lady) through our shop’s security camera from the office - and you can imagine how much my customers love me!! Hahaha.. durrhh… shy.. :p Kai gets pretty impressive presents too.. this customer actually got a florist to deliver this giant floral arrangement that completely obscured our security camera's view (!) when we put it in the office and this other old man (her area of customer expertise – mine is old/middle-aged aunties) gave her a tiny expensive-looking Egyptian statue from The Met Shop! They love us!!! :)

Bumped into another old schoolmate Daniel today! Funky (currently blond-haired) guy appeared in the news today (missed it) and will be in the papers tomorrow! Go support his new play 2 Feet Above starting at the Substation from 13 Dec! falalala.. tis the season to bump into old schoolmates.. : p

Horror Story
Read in Today this commentary from this guy on how, as a result of his being “ignorant of the finer workings of the electronic cashless payment system” ended up with a warrant of arrest issued against him and a whopping fine of $600! I almost ended up this way too, remember?!! According to him, he did not realize:

1. That there are two different types of traffic fine payment machines – Nets machines and SAM machines.
2. That there are four different types of traffic fines – from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA), the Housing and Development Board (HDB), the Land Transport Authority (LTA) and the Traffic Police.
3. That the SAM machines (which are more common and can be found at every Post office) do not accept fines imposed by the Traffic Police (the fine I got lor!) whilst the Nets machines (which are nowhere to be found) do not accept LTA fines (now I know!)

He only went to the SAMS machine to pay his huge bunch of traffic fines and hence did not realize he had, among the numerous fines, a $70 one issued by Traffic Police (same as mine!!). That was what caused the eventual trauma.. poor guy…
Character Tests

1. Which Lord Of The Rings character are you? (I haven't done this yet 'cos I haven't read the book :p)
2. Pooh-Piglet Psychometric Personality Profiler - Which character from Winnie-The-Pooh are you closest to? (I am a bit of a cross between Eeyore and Pooh.. umm... cute)'s Routing Instructions are amazing!!
Just watched a stunning performance by apparently (ok, I’m ignorant) internationally renowned Les Ballets Jazz de Montréal. Had no idea what to expect (since didn’t know ballet could be in any other form other than Classical.. err.. actually come to think of it, I have watched this other so called “Gothic” ballet before as well… umm) so was suitably impressed. Very energetic, avant-garde style ballet accompanied by a wide repertoire of different music (some of which really don’t sound like Jazz to me). Crowd favourite was definitely the third Act “Sous le rythme, je…” which started with crescendo-ing eerie, thriller-type music and white stage light slowly lightening up bunch of struggling cotton sacks. Music and light then dies down, replaced by odd assortment of traditional/ tribal instrumental music (even a rainstick) played by 5 women sitting on a raised platform. Out emerged (ya, from the sacks) five bare-torsoed (and quite muscular) guys who commenced moving in puppet-like fashion as if controlled by the instruments. Quite mesmerizing... :)

Caught up with an old schoolmate today who popped into my Bras Basah store after spotting me while walking by. We haven’t seen each other for almost 11 years!! It’s interesting just to hear about the different paths each of us have taken since we left school and finding out the classmates that each of us are still in touch with. Convinced that everyone (i.e. in the whole class) is, in one way or other, still in contact with someone else so it might not be that difficult to actually organize a class gathering (i.e. if someone can find the time/effort to do so)! Found out she is also suffering a mild form of “Quarter-life crisis”.. well, who isn’t? : p

Just heard from friend about a new mobile phone cover made to look like a condom! umm…Sometimes Known As The Phone Condom - One Size Fits All

Tuesday, 27 November 2001

oh no, oh no!! Instead of saying the right thing or just being a good listening ear, I said THE WRONG THINGS!! doesn't help when you have a confused, blundering friend like me around when you need comfort :( I feel so bad now... I was supposed to be an encouraging friend and instead I sank her spirits and threw her into temporary despair!! :O Fortunately, things have since improved between them.. progress.... :)

Monday, 26 November 2001

just got my Indian visa, my two-in-one jab for both Hep A & B (ouch!) and confirmation that I'm staying at Vagator Beach Resort @ Vagator. Hope they have Internet access there, then I can continue to blog and keep all of you my dear fans informed of my whereabouts.. :p

actually feeling a bit down now that one of my closest friends is suffering relationship woes.. it's terrible not knowing what to say or do to comfort and encourage her.. I guess the usual expectation is that I should just be there to listen and offer a shoulder to cry on.. but still, sometimes, I really wish I have the right thing to say that will bring up her spirits all at once, that she will once again be encouraged and hopeful.. and want to live life fully again, even if things are different now...... but I know that all I can do now is to pray that she will be strong and that things will turn out right's hard.... :(

url: hairless guinea pigs.. strange...
I liike this Magnadoodle thing. Very fun.

Sunday, 25 November 2001

feeling superb after a 4.6km run just now and not ”blogging till 4am” (alb’s description of my nocturnal weblogging habit) last night.

another enjoyable house-hotting party last night at karen’s place, catching up with RGS lot of friends. Realized all of us have indeed “grown older” after michelle exclaimed that “we are no longer sitting under rotating fans at east coast bbqs and chalet drinking coke, listening to blasting mambo music and talking about breakups and boyfriends” – instead, here we were in karen’s ultra-modernist décor condo, in air-con comfort, eating pasta (karen’s wonderful lasagne), sautéed mushrooms and healthy salad and sipping quality white wine, listening to lounge-y jazz music and talking about marriage and children (and other such “adult” topics).. oh dear! : p

have been going on shopping sprees for trip and have so far acquired a Therm-o-compass (which tells me the temperature and where North is – on a keychain), a Mini Maglite torchlight (which triples up as flood light, spot light or free-standing candle mode – in cool metallic blue), 10 rolls of Fuji Provia slide film, a box of 788 Polaroid film, new Arena swimwear, a pair of slick TYR Champion goggles, and a new compact Goa guide (:p with pictures, you see..)

url #1: soap that grows hair after a few days out of the package... err...
url #2: Remember the annoying paperclip man in Microsoft Word? Check out this downloadable video.. it's really funny! :).. and he's not the only one who feels this way.. read this article too!

Saturday, 24 November 2001

was so busy at the shop yesterday I didn't even have a chance to pick up my Visa from the Indian High Commission. Quite a bit of stuff to do before I go..still have one more jab for Hep A (*ouch! :( ) at doc's today, need also to pick up air tickets from agency, buy film (slide? polariod?), pay off my bunch of phone and credit card bills, get M1-roaming facilities, change money (??) and maybe start buying my toiletries and other such stuff.. trying to avoid last-minute panic for a change :p

Travel Checklist
~ Passport (& Visa)
~ Tickets
~ Credit Card
~ International Driving License (just in case)
~ Stationery (Pen & Paper)
~ Notebook (Travel Journal)
~ Luggage Bag
~ Day Pack (for camera, guidebook, water, film, wet tissues and wallet)
~ Sunglasses & Cap
~ Handphone & charger
~ Camera (slr, polariod, lomo (yes! :)) and film
~ Alarm Clock
~ Swiss Army Knife
~ Padlock
~ Money Belt
~ Torch Light (& extra batteries)
~ Light Literature (LOTR!)
~ Guide Book (Rough Guide to India)
~ Panadol
~ Band Aid
~ Antiseptic Cream
~ Insect Repellant
~ Lomotil (anti-diarrhoea tablets - or immodiium)
~ Facial cleanser and moisturizer
~ Lip balm
~ Deodorant
~ Contact Lens & Solution
~ Shampoo & Conditioner
~ Shower Cream
~ Wet Tissues
~ Comb or Brush
~ Toothbrush & Toothpaste
~ Clear Plastic Bags
~ Clothes Line
~ Extra AA Batteries
~ Washing detergent
~ Towel
~ T-shirt & Shorts
~ Disposable Underwear (Jui Sheng)
~ Jeans
~ Dressy thing (just-in-case)
~ Swimwear (just-in-case)
~ Warm Clothing
~ Slippers
~ Walking/Hiking Shoes
~ Socks (at least 2 extra pairs)
was among the first 1,000 people in Singapore to catch Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone on the 2nd day it opens! Quite a long show (2 1/2 hours!).. and honestly speaking, a tad bit slow-moving at times but I did really enjoy some of the special effects and the storyline was quite an appeal. I also like the Quidditch (a little like air-borne rugby) game they were playing in the show. It's one of those cannot-miss shows - so anything I say will not change your mind whether or not you are going to see the show anyway .. :)

Friday, 23 November 2001

exams are over and kids are flooding Orchard Rd!! Really feeling the holiday mood now with the Christmas tree up and the crowds thronging the store - busy busy busy... went to get India tourist Visa today ($80! ouch!) and also borrowed another Lonely Planet - Guide to Goa from Library.. I'm ready for my trip! Quite excited and looking forward to white sandy beaches, colonial Portuguese architecture and UNESCO sites at Hampi! :)

Just had yummy Mushroom Cheese Prata at Niggi's The Cheese Prata Shop (next to the equally famous Fong Seng 24hr Nasi Lemak store just outside NUS) with Kai and almost got booked by bunch of police for "obstructing traffic". Had to go up to them and argue with them about how they do not have any reason to book me since the car was not actually parked along any double yellow lines or single white line or such. All they could tell me was that there were "complaints" from residents.. durrhh??? They were trying to walk away until I demanded to know if they had booked me or not. Silly traffic woman then told me she will be submitting my car no. to traffic police and they will send me a warning (i.e. they will book me next time I commit the same offence). So annoying.. how am I supposed to know residents had complained?? ESP??

btw, did you enjoy my Goldfish game?? Try the Turkey Game this time! They are really cute and you try to shoot toast at them! And what an amazing variety of Pocky snacks! Also Tofurkey = Tofu + Turkey

Thursday, 22 November 2001

hahaha... this page lists down the strange things people in Hong Kong actually name themselves as collected by the site author through "personal observations, newspapers and magazines, business cards, and email registries" - there is a whole page of them! Imagine yourself being called "Action Kenny".. umm....hahahahah....but then again there really is an Apple Hong, a Noodle Cheng and a Fruit

Just found this - it is so creepy! I hate it.... :(
just had a vaccination jab for typhoid fever and took a blood sample (my blood refused to flow out of my veins!!) to test if I have natural immunity against hepatitis A. Arm is aching so much now i can hardly type.. :( ... I HATE INJECTIONS!!! ):O Read on the web about this one girl somewhere whose whole arm turned blue when she took a vaccination jab for something - eeks!.... Apparently, according to Sis, there are some people in Australia who are so opposed to mandatory vaccination of children that they have set up a society against that. In Australia, if you don't vaccinate your child, you will be left out of the education system or something like that. But check out this coherent argument given by this certain Australian doctor, Viera Scheibner, against vaccination. She maintains that injecting vaccines throws the body´s own immune defenses out of the game and proves that babies in fact feel tremendous stress when given vaccination jabs.. wow, makes you really think twice about vaccinating yourself.. In fact, check out these many other studies that link social violence and criminal behaviour to childhood vaccinations! But I guess kiasu Singaporeans are not likely to ever say no to a public (free/subsidised) programme like that.. I mean, can you imagine your mother writing to the Ministry of Health and saying no? It's more likely that she would say - "Better go and take. Otherwise next time have to pay!" Apathetic? Or just plain ignorant? I don't know...

can't type anymore.. my arm really hurts..bye bye for now..

Wednesday, 21 November 2001

Latest Corrections From An Expert Source:
GPS is a navigation system using satellites orbiting the earth and a handheld receiver. The GPS receiver can receive transmitted signals from these satellites. With signals from a minimum of 3 different satellites, the receiver can calculate your exact location on earth.

Knowing your exact location on earth is pretty useless, without a reference waypoint or a map, because it is just a number. With the help of the GPS receiver and a map, you'll able to know your location, in reference to another point. With a map, the location will help you pinpoint your position in a map. It will be useful on your hiking trip to Nepal, when you're lost in the Sahara dessert, or when you lose your direction while driving in M'sia (I think this point is a subtle reference to me but I shall pretend to ignore it :p)

There are many units of measurements for GPS location, just like the different unit of measurements for length. To make things more complicated, earth is not flat. To "flatten" the earth on a table, like a map on the table, you can do it differently. Imagine peeling your orange skin. You can peel it in different ways, and still be able to "flatten" the entire skin on the table. That is exactly how the earth surface is "peeled" out, flatten and mapped.

There are different ways of "flattening" earth for mapping, adopted differently in each countries. These standards are called datums. They are always indicated in accurate maps and atlas.

Why all these information? Because you need to know how the map was created and what unit to use, in order to navigate correctly, base on the map and position collected from GPS.

If you think that's hard, think about your next visit to buy clothes. Size S,M,L,XL is different from store to store. You'll might know that size L of clothes made in Singapore, might mean size S from overseas tailors. Your sleeve lengths might be measured in cm here, but others might use inches. Therefore, you'll need to know the "sizing" and the correct ruler to use ;)

There you have it, an expert's explanation! Cool huh?? :)
Check out alb's new GPS Info Page! err... GPS = Global Positioning System - it's basically a system that helps you (with the help of this bunch of 24 satellites in space - of which you can only see 12 at most at one time since the earth is round and turns and turns.. durrh.. :p) to figure out where you are and where you're going with the help of exact coordinates which you detect with a GPS receiver. This tutorial is quite good for some basic understanding.

alb just tried to give me a crash course on navigation and datums and cassini numbers. All I can remember is, there are many datums out there. A datum is some kind of "model" that is used to match the location of features on the ground to coordinates on the map. Different maps may use different datums to plot the locations of places, hence, if you analyse any map data without knowing the datum, you may end up in an entirely different place (something like trying to find a location but using an entirely wrong scale e.g. cm vs metres). The use of Cassini numbers (e.g. x=28349.0000&y=31545.0000 for Orchard Cineleisure) is just another way of depicting x and y coordinates on a map. He also brought up something about diferent ways (I think, since I am getting confused) on how to flatten the earth. Using an example of an orange, we may choose to slice it North to South and hence lay it out like a flower, with the South Pole as the Centre. We can also just roll it flat out after one North-South slice. How the earth is flattened will affect ...err.. how ... oh dear, i don't remember anymore!!! :( knowledge leaks from my brain like mucus.. I think I need another lesson..

Anyhow, GPS is probably not very useful in Singapore since everyone navigates around Singapore by way of either MRT stations or MRT lines anyway.. I mean, when we are lost, we will probably just ask any nearby auntie or ah pek, "Ex-cue me hor, where is nearest M-Ah-T sta-sen har?". We'll never get lost, all thanks to our efficient and forward thinking Government. More Good Years!

Tuesday, 20 November 2001

I'm the bubonic plague!

I’m infamous. I’m usually deadly when left untreated. I’m spread by a flea and I wiped out much of the human population of the Earth hundreds of years ago. Burp!
Take the Affliction Test Today!

These two funny chaps just walked by my bras basah store!!! hahaha...
feel like shooting hamsters, pop stars or (more legitimately) Osama bin Laden? Check out this assassins page! It's quite addictive. Or you can just watch hamsters or amoeba dance away... ok ok.. i'm frivolous...
watched a bit of reality tv Fear Factor just now. Eeks! They make people free-fall down 12-storey buildings, eat sheep eyes and hang them upside-down in water!! very disturbing watching people suffering just to win prizes.. this guy was actually flailing his arms in the water in absolute terror! i don't think i'll ever join a race like this (maybe Survivors -haha- or The Amazing Race - fun!! ) just in case they make me take injections or drink Jasmine Green Tea (yucky!! :p)

travel url: a race to row across the atlantic!

Monday, 19 November 2001

Met the most ridiculous and immature and unprofessional individual i've ever encountered today! Staff from bras basah called us early this morning to tell us that our next door neighbour (this guy called Raymond) from Signcraft had suddenly cut off our electric supply because we had apparently not paid him for the invoice he gave us last week! Background to this is firstly, we actually share a common electricity supply line with our neighbour, though we each have our own meters to calculate how much we each incur per month. For some strange reason, Signcraft had not paid their electricity bills for the past 5 months and hence they had not billed us as well (until we got one single invoice on 10 Nov). In the meantime, they got warning letters from Singapore Power to pay up. Only when they actually got the third and final warning to pay up or get their line cut off by 19th Nov (which is today) did they start chasing us for our part of the payment For the next 5 to 6 days, Raymond started to bug us morning and night even though we explained repeatedly that we could not get our boss to sign the cheque payment at such short notice (being only 5 to 6 days since we got the invoice!) and we would pay him as soon as we could. Without notice, we got our line cut off by him (mind you, it wasn't Singapore Power that cut it off.. Signcraft themselves still had their own electric supply runnning) this morning. When we confronted him in-person immediately after failing to talk sense to him over the phone, we found a shivering, cowardly guy who admitted he was childish and angry. durrhh??? Ridiculous chap continued to refuse to turn on our electric supply and eventually, we had to call in the police (whom he even tried to get to throw us out of his shop - much to their rolling-eyes amusement), the landlord (who gently - so as not to hurt his fragile pride and as if talking to a stubborn child - told him it was wrong of him to do that) and also Singapore Power itself - in front of all of whom he made a public spectacle of himself as he demanded an apology from us for "ignoring" his repeated calls and still continued to think he was right. What a rigmarole that cost us a whole morning of work!

Such people make working a pain.. grr...
Bubblecraft is really funny - it's a Flash movie - quite anti-climactic.. but the tune is rather Euro-trashy so it is actually quite dancy (something you will find on WKRZ91.3FM radio station). It reinforces the suspicion-fact that the net is really quite randomly scattered with the most frivolous time-wasters.. hahaha... which brings to mind ManBeef - for meat-eaters out there.. human meat that is...ummm..
goa in 2 weeks' time!!

was at clarke quay's busker festival just now and chanced upon THE CHALKMASTER! hahaha.. actually, that's really what he calls himself. Toronto-based guy (I think) was drawing (legally) on the tarmac ground using none-other-than Prismacolor Nupastels to raise funds for the Autism Research Centre!! ok.. I think 9 out of 10 of you don't know what Nupastels are.. it's actually the brand of quality chalk pastels brought in by our shop from the US. Really cool. He actually does this at home for a living! Check out the amazing Superman he has done! Spoke to him for a while and promised to support him with a box of pastels if he drops by at our shop tomorrow. He'll be at One Fullerton from Tuesday to draw Spiderman! Go support him.

played Goldfish Catch just now - it's so fun!! you come home to find your evil roommate tossing your beloved goldfishes into the frying pan and you have to save them by catching them and tossing them back into the tank before they fry and go to heaven! hahaha.. the poor creatures even squeak and scream! - but it's really sad when you lose them... I will kill my roommate if she does that to me!! :p The rest of the games at Arcade Vault look fun as well.. will check them out when I can find the time.... Time.. sigh...

Sunday, 18 November 2001

watched a superb French movie (after a while, the fact that it is in a foreign tongue doesn't seem to matter anymore - what with the brilliant script, cinematography, fine acting and all) Brotherhood Of The Wolf (Le Pacte des Loups) just now - cinema was so packed we had to sit in the 2nd row from the front - murder mystery-thriller packed with exciting fighting scenes, cool costumes, great plot, excellent cinematography, great bods ... in fact, the show was so engaging we didn't realise it was more than 2 hours long! Go see it - it's worth every cent of the price of the ticket! Funnily enough, some of the best movies I have seen recently have been in a foreign tongue - especially Lagaan - this Hindi-movie I watched at Bedok cinema. It was so long (4 hours to be exact!) that they actually had an intermission to allow people to stretch and visit the washroom!

Just did a quick mental count: I think there are more men (at least the ones I know) reading my blog than women! Oh well.. this is for you guys then :p: The Modern Man teaches other men How To Become a Sex Object in just five easy steps. How can you pass an opportunity like this up??

Helping a dear friend now through a relationship crisis - for the rest of you out there that I am not managing to reach out to: Spank The Monkey in the meantime. Good, clean fun.. don't worry.. and turn on the volume. Nicer with the music.

Saturday, 17 November 2001

didn't blog last night - first break in 2 months! Reason: very happening day (and hence very exhausted): As the saying goes: Tired But Happy.. err... cliche.. :p

off-day but still had to go into office and later rush to Telok Kurau Sec (East Coast) to deliver something to the art teacher (they are having their art exams!!) Thereafter, decided to save money (and be a little outrageous) and walk back from Still Road to Bras Basah Complex! Another one of my legendary (meaning: epic, not imaginary) long walks! Actually, it wasn't really that long. I checked it on the street directory later and found that it is actually only 6.6km :p. Walked through the whole of Geylang from Geylang Serai market (where I stopped to say hi to Sarkarsi Said Tzee (local batik painting guru featured on local TV before)), stare at the famous foodie stops and durian stalls, and mingle with the local crowds - passed Kallang area (with its refreshing greenery and river), headed into Arab Street area (where I stopped by to say hi to my friends at Redbox flower shop), before coming to Victoria street and meeting up with Kai at our Bras Basah branch. Hahaha.. other than the sky displaying a constant threat of (and eventually actually) raining, it was quite fun.. See Tour Pictures (use the slideshow feature) - don't miss my b&w pics at the end!

dinner at Marche (very very crowded) before going to Kai's place again to finish silk painting -> Check it out!

finally finished Bridget Jones's Diary on the bus yesterday- Aiyah, still turned out to have fairy-taleish ending in the end... wish the ending was more.. unexpected.. haha..still, enjoyed the "thirty-ish-woman-convinced-she-will-not-get-married-and-hence-by-found-dead-and-half-eaten-by-Alsatian"style writing..starting to read Lord Of The Rings finally. Will probably have to bring it to India with me. Yes! I've booked the tickets and will be leaving in 2 weeks time!!

Friday, 16 November 2001

hey bloggers! something worth doing this Dec 1 >>

just found a really fun online arcade-style game - check it out >> The Way Of The Stick and I can now grow virtual plants on my desktop instead of real plants! Hooray! No more killing of cacti!

paid my traffic fines yesterday.. finally.. am now finally free of stressful debts!! (though lighter on the wallet :( )

They kissed at the museum!! The painting you see in the background is by Singapore-based German artist Heide Sachter currently on display at exhibition Alltaglichkeiten at Societe Generale Gallery, Alliance Francaise until Nov 17.

spent evening trying out silk painting on pre-gutta lined patterned silk cloth from Arty's at Kai's house while watching Chinese 10pm news. Quite fun.. will upload artwork once done. Saw horror news of Primary school boy blinded in one eye when he returned from toilet to classroom and teacher opened door just as he was outside. Door handle (at kid's eye level) jabbed into his eye causing massive blood spillage and subsequently permanent loss of sight in poor kid's right eye. Very scary.. camera zoomed in on blood stains on door handle, entire door, floor and walls - it's really gruesome..almost like a murder scene.. parents are sue-ing school now - apparently school was very unhelpful and refuses to take any responsibility, accusing kid of running into door handle himself.. how irresponsible and unsympathetic..

Correction (with apology) : p
excellent pasta at Wednesday's house party was not seafood fettucini - it was chicken basil - apologies to the cook who was greatly distressed by everyone's lack of memory and is hence (mistakenly) assuming dish was not memorable - we assure otherwise :)

Wednesday, 14 November 2001

the world's longest tongue.. eeeeeawwww......
am left with only five Singapore 1 cent coins in my wallet..(actually, would have been left with even less but strange car park payment counter woman at Orchard Plaza wanted to take my Malaysian 10 sen coin instead of my whole bunch of Singapore 1 cent coins so gave it to her instead.. duh??) hooray! managed to survive for two whole days without borrowing a single cent from anyone even though i lost my ATM card on Monday! Will go in and get another one tomorrow and then.. err.. pay the traffic fine i still owe LTA.. daddy just got issued a letter asking him to turn up in court if he doesn't pay by 11 Dec!! :O mum is really angry with me now.. :( i'm so irresponsible... :(

had a super sumptuous home-cooked dinner just now at friend's house party.. house parties are a lot of fun if the company is good and the food is nice. The host was an excellent cook and we stuffed our faces with curry chicken (and French baguette and prata), pitta bread (with yummy dip made up of cream cheese, thai chilli and olive & sesame oil), salad (amazing dressing of garlic-ginger, black pepper, olive oil, soy sauce and sesame oil), mushroom tarts (filling of fresh shiitake mushroom, oyster sauce, sesame oil and olive oil?) plus excellent seafood fettucini cooked up by alb and sushi from Sakae Sushi (I think). gone are my plans to detox..

check out new lomo pics i've uploaded. Kai also made me this cute turtle rock thing with our best-selling Marabu Funliner Puff-Paints (haha.. subtle advertising.. :P).. this one is still drying.. i'll upload another pic once I've puffed them up tomorrow morning.. :) i think they will kiss!

Arts Central's Blue Planet is the most amazing documentary I've ever seen!!! I've just caught Episode 2 on "The Deep" (filmed some 4000m below sea level near the Mid-Atlantic Ridge) and they featured all these really weird-looking creatures that could easily have stepped out of a sci-fi movie! Some were transparent, some had antennae.. there was even an octopus with flappy dumbo wings, sea cucumbers that could swim around, and all these shrimps giving off blinking ultra-cool blue lights (called bio-luminous)!! I don't know about you, but I'm definitely going to catch as many episodes as I can. :)

was arguing during dinner with alb on where the position of the human stomach is (relative to the heart and lungs and rib cage) and suddenly realised my knowledge on human anatomy is zilch! In fact, I even forgot entirely about the existence of intestines and the bladder and was rather convinced our organs are stacked up one on top of the other, with no overlaps.. Did a quick search of the net just now and am bursting with an information overload now - just stick to this portal if you need answers like me. If you want to feel like you are in Med School, check out Gray’s Anatomy of the Human Body!! Wah.. so ambitious!! : p

Tuesday, 13 November 2001

ahhhh!! : O I've lost my POSB ATM card!! Yet another blunder from yesterday - discovered only 20 mins ago! Started imagining someone drawing money out of my account even though i don't actually leave any records of it anywhere (and it is also not my birthday, his birthday, my dog's birthday, my car no., my parent's wedding anniversary etc etc - you know what I mean lah..) - anyway, just checked with the bank, no more transactions since the $950 cash deposit I put in yesterday before I accidentally left the card in the Auto-Cash Deposit Machine. Phew!

Actually, thinking about it, I think this is an evil (but cleverly disguised to avoid legal implications) ploy by DBS/POSB in order to cause people to lose their ATM cards so that they can earn from the $3 replacement fee.. Let me explain.. You see, all the POSB/DBS ATMs always have the "$1000 Fast Cash Withdrawal" touch-screen button placed way-too-close next to the "Other Amounts" button. So inevitably, we will always (due to parallax error) accidentally select it instead of the latter, ending up with like 10 times the amount of money we need. We will then by forced to trot over to the cash deposit machine to put it all back (which was what I did yesterday) and, for some unexplicable reason, this machine works differently. It doesn't prompt you to take back your ATM card after the transaction. You will then, if you are as confused as me, frequently forget to collect it. This is how they end up earning $3 from you! For replacing the card! (They don't make ATM machines work like that because there will then be too many complaints.. so they only do it for the cash deposit machines)..

Wicked hor?? hhmph!
hooray for weblogging! Other than Blogger, there are other sites that allow you to start your own online diary - check them out: livejournal weblogger It's really easy.. believe me..

woke up still with a bad tummyache. alb suspects it might be stomach flu - food just isn't being digested.. which explains my constipation, my giddiness (lack of sugar) and fatigue..

i've started keeping a Neopet... reckon since I'm online so much, I'm probably better off keeping a virtual pet than a real pet :p .. in fact, i just remembered.. I haven't watered my cacti for a while..hope they're still alive... how embarrassing..

check out the bizarre experiments people do with their microwave ovens!! A grape actually ignites!!

Monday, 12 November 2001

another plane has crashed in New York!! What the **** is happening!!?? this is terrible!!! and osama has suddenly admitted to sept 11 events! oh no oh no oh no!!!!

my head is spinning wildly, i feel nauseous and constipated and i've actually lost my appetite. In fact, I've been fumbling and stumbling over stuff since morning. I've even taken to feeling like Mr Blobby for some absurd reason...except that I'm not pink and I don't have yellow spots (that's unless I fall sick tomorrow and suddenly develop rashes.. TOUCH WOOD!) Since i took a slight wrong turning this morning and missed entering the CBD during the no-ERP-window-period by a mere half-a-minute (damn!), I've knocked over a full cup of coffee onto the shop cashier countertop, overturned a container of powdered detergent onto my bathroom floor, (almost) dropped a plateful of leftover food after dinner, and dropped countless things for no rhymn or reason today... :( this is most unsettling... my sister has just advised me to go and see the doctor.. gulp! I hope this is merely just fatigue-related and not anything more serious...sigh.. what's happening? :(

Sunday, 11 November 2001

on a slight high now cos good friend Lynn from London just called me this morning! We spoke and bantered for almost an hour - catching up. Realised how nice it is to have someone of the same wavelength to chat with on almost anything - really missed that since she left :)

a second day of gastronomic indulgence is beginning to take its toil on me. Had one-pair-of-chopsticks rating Joo Chiat Bak Kut Teh for lunch and ordered additional side dishes of pig's trotters, salted veg and dough fritters. By the end of the meal, I was so stuffed that I could hardly walk.. still I staggered to nearby minimalist decor Awfully Chocolate - The Cake Shop - thinking I could stare at the chocolate cakes in the window (even if I don't eat them) - of which there was none - very Zen-like decor.. you are supposed to, I guess, imagine the cakes? :p Anyhow, ended up driving to another Makansutra-recommended stall at 86 East Coast Rd (Katong Village) for Teh Tarik.. I am becoming a glutton.. Desperatedly drinking plain water and Jap Green Tea trying to speed up digestion now and still feel the greasiness.. contemplating switching to a full fruit-and-vege detox diet for the next two days...

went for two games of bowling (the first time in a blue moon) at Katong bowl after that - too hot for any outdoor sports - and bowled embarrassingly badly.. :p Bowling is really hard.. you are supposed to spin the ball or something and when it reaches the end of the lane, it is supposed to turn back by itself cos the lane is (I think) rougher or something like that.. don't know.. can't figure out.. but I did manage to get a strike and a couple of spares! Not bad, huh? ;-)

alb & I went for a treasure hunt with his GPS device today after he discovered this online thing called GeoCache. This is basically a game where anyone registered can provide some coordinates - which can be anywhere in the world - for other GPS device owners and when you find the location with your GPS device, there is supposed to be a "prize" there (unless someone has already removed it). The first was in Botanical Gardens (which was already in darkness by the time we were there) and the other was along Sixth Avenue (which was even darker when we got there)..couldn't find anything and he sprained and cut his anke tripping over some steps.. our first GeoCache failure.. we are shattered...

am reading Bridget Jones's Diary now and infusing my head with new and unsavoury vocabulary (such as emotional f***wittage)... but the book is hilarious! I'm putting aside Lord Of The Rings and Head Strong to indulge in it for a while.. haha...

had the most amazing Mexican food at Margarita's just now. Turned out it's actually my friend Matthew's sister's restaurant.. check out the rave reviews! Dinner turned out to be an educational lesson on Mexican food as well. If you have ever suspected that tacos, nachos, quesadillas, chimichangas, enchiladas, tortillas, burritos, fajitas and whatever were actually somewhat similar, you're right! According to Matthew, these flour-rish pancakes are either made of corn or wheat.. running down the list, the basic ones are tortillas(corn) and burritos(wheat). If you fry tortillas you get nachos. If you fry burritos you get chimichangas. Cook tortillas lightly in a red chile sauce and roll it around meat or cheese and cook it in more sauce, and you have an enchilada. Quesadillas are tortillas filled with chilli and cheese and other stuff and pinched like curry puffs before they are fried. Fold tortillas over any sort of food and you get tacos. Let tortillas get slightly stale and cut them into strips. Fry them and serve them in any one of several kinds of sauce, and you have chilaquiles. Let them go even more stale and then fry them crisp and you get tortilla chips! Wow! If you do try the restaurant, be sure to order their Premium Margaritas, Lobster Quesadillas, Sauteed Mushrooms and definitely their out-of-the-world Tiramisu.. yum!!!

finally went for both a gym-run (only 15mins though) and swim (another half hour) yesterday morning after not exercising for like.. weeks.. ok, i exaggerate.. still it felt good to get my atrophied muscles (again I exaggerate) working again..haha... spent part of the afternoon doing a Stained-Glass Christmas Card Making workshop for Foochow Methodist Church and then rushed back for another stained-glass session for Estee Lauder (as part of their solid perfumes exhibition) at Centrepoint.

Matthew planted this new thought in my head about doing long-term volunteer work in another country. Developmental work in like Ghana or Nepal or some other third-world country for between 18 to 24 months or something like that. Actually, it isn't really a new thought - I've toyed with that idea before, it's just that if I do it, it would definitely be the most courageous thing I will do at this stage of my life.. to give up the fast-paced corporate rat-race to do something meaningful and life-changing... it's a thought.. actually, to be honest.. it is a very tempting thought....

Saturday, 10 November 2001

just discovered this interesting wildlife artist called Charley Harper who creates artwork depicting "unique aspects of his wildlife subjects through highly stylized geometric reductions" - he actually draws his pictures with a ruler, French curve, set square, protractors etc! It's so cool! Harper says, "When I look at a wildlife or nature subject, I don't see feathers, fur, scapulars or tail coverts — none of that. I see exciting shapes, color combinations, patterns, textures, fascinating behavior and endless possibilities for making interesting pictures. I regard the picture as an ecosystem in which all the elements are interrelated, interdependent, perfectly balanced, without trimming or unutilized parts; and herein lies the lure of painting: in a world of chaos, the picture is one small rectangle in which the artist can create an ordered universe."

bought a book by MindMap guy Tony Buzan at Kinokuniya last night cos he happened to be there for a talk-cum-autograph session - I'm quite a sucker for autographed books - I already have 6 in my collection - including Sophie's World by Jostein Gaarder and The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje! It's this new book (Head Strong) that shares ways in which we can develop our mind/body connection and hence unleash our untapped potential.. Just thought I'll read it and find out what its all about..

spoke to boss in the afternoon and found that I wasn't actually angry with him anymore - maybe it was also becos he was no longer speaking in an unreasonable tone and was in one of his calmer, discussive moods. He actually agreed to (without hesitation) cover part of my handphone bills for all the calls I've been getting from companies and schools.

Flashback: Exactly one year ago, I was (bloodily) injured by a shattered glass door at Specialist Shopping Centre and had to be stretchered by ambulance (quite embarrassingly, through the busy Christmas crowds) to SGH for an operation where I got four stitches to sew up a deep gash on my ankle. Took me almost a month to recover properly. Eek!

Friday, 9 November 2001

C R E A T E - A - F A R T - Play it and then send it as a e-mail to those you don't like..

sky is grey and hazy and teetering on the brink of a heavy downpour.. Bring your brollies!! Got to go off and eat breakfast - there's nothing at home to eat than Gardenia Bread in its various forms - I think we have at least four different types at home (apparently to cater to all tastes) but I don't like Bread from Gardenia! I only like Breadtalk!


url: Support the Center For Missing And Exploited Socks

really heavy traffic on blogger tonight! only managed to blog now.. phew! have been trying for more than an hour!

i continue to be in a daze today. Not very effective at work in this state, I assure you. Forgot to blog yesterday the little collision i had (against this bright-yellow-sure-cannot-miss-one-barrier in the Orchard Point carpark) that dented the front right bit of my car and cracked part of the right signal light. Initially I thought it was the same side that my brother had damaged in an earlier accident - turned out to be the exact opposite side instead so now I have two damaged signal lights and not one! To be honest, this spaciness is really starting to affect my judgement in driving - I even had trouble reverse parking just now - something i used to be able to do in seconds! Have been advised to keep off the wheel until I recover...

kai wrote me a really long (actually it was two-page but with her tiny and neat handwriting, it looked really long ) letter.. very touching.. Guess we really haven't been communcating enough and she didn't even know how to start talking to me about my stress at work (and her stress about my stress!). I think I have been quite selfish and honestly have been thinking of myself so far - whether I want to stay on in this job, for how much longer, what are my options, how much I want to commit myself blah blah blah.. I know she is going to find it hard to cope especially if I leave suddenly.. even now, ever since I've become "lifeless and colourless" (in her own colourful words), I've become quite ineffective at work (in my opinion..) I think I owe it to her (and to myself I suppose) to sort out my state of mind now..

heard a song on the car radio tonight and actually started to miss someone...sigh.. i'm so sentimental :p

cheerful url #1: The Bill Mayer Website - so cute!! Check out the monsters!
cheerful url #2: - Singapore's Premier Satirical Humour Website - had me in stitches in seconds! Note especially the ludicrous names of the writers and people interviewed.. e.g. Hong Kan GRC MP Colonel (NS) Uppgradum s/o Onlifdeyvotfommy