Monday, 30 June 2003


i'm not really into genetically-modified food and stuff, but isn't this really amazing??
(see story: A Taiwanese company has created a genetically modified (GM) ornamental fish that glows in the dark)

this reminds me: i was surprised to realise, after talking to a couple of friends, that few have actually ever seen fireflies (or what some people call glow worms) in the wild.

a friend of mine recommends the following nearby (johor) places to spot them. if you ever have a chance, go see them. it's really worth it - definitely one of nature's most spectacular and magical shows (was planning to keep these places a secret but good things have to be shared, eh? :))

Kota Rainforest Resort
Tanjung Piai - also "geographically the southemmost tip of the Asian mainland"
Location: Ya Kun Kaya Toast (Shenton Way)
I noticed that the two slices of kaya toast I ordered were of slightly different sizes. Pondered on which one to eat first. Decided to eat the larger one first. Carried on reading my book after that.

(a random record of current real-life idling - inspired by the dullest blog)
harry politician & the order of the pap's take on the latest Harry Potter "thick-thick" book is a real masterpiece! had me in stitches... will surely be a classic! (thanks Lynn :))

especially the excerpt from the book: Harry & the Prisoner of Sentosa by JK Goreng ... :D - a definite must-read!!
about Life

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards."

S?ren Kierkegaard (1813-1855)

sometimes, when we look back at the lives we have lived thus far, we can see what a marvellous or complicated piece of work it is.. the decisions and choices that we made, the friends and acquaintances who walked through our lives at various points, the books that we read, the schools that we attended, the jobs that we took, the cars that we drove, the laughter, the pain, the sorrow, the love... Life indeed must be lived, and savoured, and experienced in the present, not in retrospect.

other wonderful LIFE quotes:

No one imagines that a symphony is supposed to improve in quality as it goes along,
or that the whole object of playing it is to reach the finale.
The point of music is discovered in every moment of playing and listening to it.
It is the same, I feel, with the greater part of our lives,
and if we are unduly absorbed in improving them
we may forget altogether to live them.

Alan Watts

To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest criticism and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty and find the best in others; to leave this world a bit better whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived--this is to have succeeded.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

A tree has both straight and crooked branches; the symmetry of the tree, however, is perfect. Life is balanced like a tree. When you consider the struggles, difficulties, and sorrows as a part of it, then you see it as beautiful and perfect.

George M. Lamsa

It is not death that we should fear, but we should fear never beginning to live.

Marcus Aurelius

Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. To keep our faces toward change and behave like free spirits in the presence of fate is strength undefeatable.

Helen Keller

Life is beautiful to whomsoever will think beautiful thoughts. There are no common people but they who think commonly and without imagination or beauty. Such are dull enough.

Stanton Davis Kirkham

Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.

George Bernard Shaw

The value of life lies not in the length of days, but in the use we make of them; a man may live long yet live very little.


A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.

George Bernard Shaw

People say that what we're all seeking is a meaning for life. I don't think that's what we're really seeking. I think that what we're seeking is an experience of being alive, so that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonances within our own innermost being and reality, so that we actually feel the rapture of being alive.

Joseph Campbell

Be not afraid of life.
Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact.

William James

Life is not a race, but a journey to be savored each step of the way.
Yesterday is History, Tomorrow is a Mystery and Today is a gift:
that's why we call it - "The Present".

CEO of Coca Cola

Sunday, 29 June 2003

the war in iraq

charlie’s angels: full throttle

I bet everyone who’s catching a movie this weekend is either watching Hulk or Charlie’s Angels. Caught the latter in a sold-out show this evening at Plaza Sing and have to admit that although it is a blatant pin-up babe poster movie aimed at the masculine gender, it does make a gal feel pretty good with all the “kick-(guys’)-ass” stunts and the “girl power” theme... hahaha..

Although we gals can be “inspired”, it indeed does not appear easy to become an “Angel”. We first have to learn to speak many languages (even the really obscure ones.. I bet they can even speak Swahili..). Then we have to learn to operate many different modes of transport – from helicopters to forklifts to army trucks to scrambler bikes to powerboats and what have you! :O We also have to be totally trained in martial arts, swimming, diving, gun handling, hand combat, dance, acting, breaking locks, tarzan swings, rock climbing, fence climbing, looking cute, seduction, and quick fashion changes, as well as making sure makeup stays on undisturbed – whatever the situation..

I think they are even more powerful than the Powerpuff Girls! Or even the characters from The Matrix!! What the ........?? :O

Saturday, 28 June 2003

Follow A Child

After teaching lovely 4 ½ year-old twins Carrie and Carmen to paint a colourful plate of fruits in this afternoon’s Oil Painting for Kids Workshop, I’m finally done with my children’s art classes. I’ve taught a total of 7 types of courses, 23 workshops, and met 97 little individuals between the ages of 4 ½ to 13 years old, all in these 3 weeks of their June break.

More important than the pretty decent sum this short freelance teaching stint has brought me, it has also opened my eyes to the wonderful and colourful world that I’ve forgotten since I grew up and entered the adult world at some mysterious point in the forgotten past. The world of imagination (flowers throw parties and fall in love, dinosaurs taller than trees, fishes that eat other fishes bigger than themselves and sink to the bottom of the sea), of colour (reds, yellows, blues, greens, purples, browns, orange – their appetites and natural sense for colours is amazing, constantly bugging me to help them to mix or get more colours to create their fabulously explosively colourful clay models and paintings :). In this world, even dung has colour!), the world of peace and love and unconditional friendships (the most popular themes that appear – I love mummy, God loves us, To my best friend Kimberly etc). Their boundless energy and unrestrained laughter was infectious (for a while, I found myself running from place to place just like them! kids don’t walk – really). I learnt as much, if not more, from them as they did, hopefully, from me. Above all, they were honest. In everything, they either loved it or hated it and had no qualms about being brutally frank in showing their feelings. To gain their trust, respect and affection was more rewarding than anything I’ve ever experienced.

Incidentally, read something that would really captured how I feel, in SARK’s book Inspiration Sandwich. She wrote: A child’s world is made of spirit and miracles. We sometimes think that children should follow us, listen to us, become like us. Follow a child closely for an hour. Not to teach or to discipline, but to learn, and to laugh.

Friday, 27 June 2003

Q: Why did the chicken cross the road??

We don't really care why the chicken crossed the road. We just want to know if the chicken is on our side of the road or not. The chicken is either with us or it is against us. There is no middle ground here.

Now at the left of the screen, you clearly see the satellite image of the chicken crossing the road.

We have reason to believe there is a chicken, but we have not yet been allowed access to the other side of the road.

MOHAMMED ALDOURI (Iraqi ambassador to the UN)
The chicken did not cross the road. This is a complete fabrication. We don't even have a chicken.

This was an unprovoked act of rebellion and we were quite justified in dropping 50 tons of nerve gas on it.

If the chicken crossed the road, it is the will of Allah. We will bomb anyone who tries to prevent it crossing the road.

What was wrong in the chicken crossing the road? The West think they can decide the way the chicken should cross. Well, this means I can't retire yet.

Did the chicken cross the road?
Did he cross it with a toad?
Yes, The chicken crossed the road,
But why it crossed, I've not been told!

To die. In the rain. Alone.

I envision a world where all chickens will be free to cross roads without having their motives called into question.

In my day, we didn't ask why the chicken crossed the road.
Someone told us that the chicken crossed the road, and that was good enough for us.

Imagine all the chickens crossing roads in peace.

It is the nature of chickens to cross the road.

It was an historical inevitability.

I may not agree with what the chicken did, but I will defend to the death its right to do it.

What chicken?

To boldly go where no chicken has gone before.

You saw it cross the road with your own eyes! How many more chickens have to cross before you believe it?

I have just released MS eChicken 2003, which will not only cross roads, but will lay eggs, file your important documents, and balance your checkbook - and Internet Explorer is an inextricable part of MS eChicken 2003.

Did the chicken really cross the road or did the road move beneath the chicken?

I missed one?

(via email)

can't blog much today. there's something noxious in the air today. everyone i met has been feeling tired, including me..

Thursday, 26 June 2003

Problem: How to deal with Pizzahut's take once no refill Salad policy

Venue: Beijing Pizza Hut

Problem: How to deal with Pizzahut's take once no refill Salad policy??? (NOT all you can eat)

Answer: See pics

Step 1: Fill up the base of the bowl
Step 2: Use pineapple cubes as "bricks" to form a circle on top of the bowl
Step 3: Fill the inner
Step 4: Use sliced cucumber as "lid" to seal the first layer

For 2nd, 3rd and subsequent layers, repeat Step 2,3,4,2,3,4,2,3,4,2,3,4,2,3,4............ N

You all may think out other creative filling patterns for your own Pizza Hut visit...

had me in stitches... hahaha... (received via email)
ullo de uruguay

ola!! estoy en uruguay!! final-mente!! buenos dias (or should i say buenas noches to you :)!!

we´ve finally made it across the uruguay border last night after a gruelling 700km drive across two brazilian states (santa catarina and rio grande do sul), crossing some of the most dramatically-varied landscapes (rolling green fields, flat mongolian steppes, cows cows and more cows, eucalyptus trees, broad meandering rivers, horse farms - you name it, we`ve seen it in the past two days) , experiencing some totally amazing climatic variations (from blistering hot brazilian summer heat, to stormy gloomy english weather and even cool breezy humid in-between weather which is my favourite) and seeing some really mindblowingly beautiful skies (fluffy clouds, giant towering mushrooms of dark storm clouds, sunsets of purple-lilac-pink hues and mountains that look like they are on fire, with the setting sun behind them lighting the sky deep orange, red and yellow). it´s really only when you are driving across a huge country that you really feel the immensity of it... you could drive for an hour and not see another car pass, or even a house... just makes you feel insignificant.. if you know what i mean..

we crossed at this border crossing called Quarai in south brazil (after my bad navigation - which turned out to be a blessing in disguise (read on!) - caused us to take a wrong turning and we ended up some 120km away from this other place - Santana do Livramento- we were originally intending to cross at..) to cut the long story short, the land rover actually has some problems with immigration as it has been overstaying in the country for more than two years, so we had to sort of "smuggle" it out of the country or end up paying the brazilian authorities a hefty fine or even end up getting the car confiscated (worst-case scenario)! Ironically, the car is called Santana and Livramento means "freedom" so we had wanted to get through that particular border for symbolic reasons :p anyhow, Quarai turned out to be much easier in the end ´cos it was so relaxed that people were practically walking across without checks! as a matter of fact, the Carnaval was just happening on the Uruguay side last night and truckloads of outrageously-dressed, drunken, laughing, cheering, marijuana-smoking brazilians were just dancing across while the customs officials jested with passers-by!! wow wow wow!! and the Carnaval was great!! wait till i show you the pictures!

so we are now finally free and headed for Patagonia!! to the great south!! the Earth of Fire!!
artistic windows

view from bus on a rainy day

the bus window transforms into a stunning canvas on a rainy day like today...

Wednesday, 25 June 2003

aint you sleeping??

a dear friend and regular reader of my blog remarked aloud to me today, “Are you sleeping at all?? Your latest blogs are all published at such unearthly hours!” she made me realise that even such minute details of my blogs are scrutinized to a certain degree… haha.. :p honestly speaking, until she mentioned it today, i have been rather oblivious to the apparent lack of sleep i must look like I am having. Reason is, although I have been clocking in no more than 5 to 6 hours of sleep daily over the past month or so (I wake up at around 9 to 9.30am – latest 10am), i have found myself none for the worse. In fact, for the first time in years, I have been waking up every day without an alarm clock, and have found my energy level consistently high throughout the day, even till nighttime.

i pondered on this pleasant situation and managed to come up with a probable conclusion: The lack of mental stress in my daily life. Although I am still pretty occupied throughout the week, these days I am mostly doing what I enjoy and am generally good at. Also, I am meeting and teaching a bunch of hyperactive kids almost everyday and their boundless energy just rubs off me, especially when I have to run after them :p

my fairly regular walking and running are helping a little as well. My guess is, when we have mental stress, even subconsciously, our muscles are tensed up and that can actually make us feel exhausted at the end of the day, whether or not we actually physically run around or have enough sleep the previous night..

ya, hope that explains my bizarre 4am postings.. wahahaha…. : p
Always Look on the Bright Side of Life - Monty Python (theme song for Nike's ad 2002)

Some things in life are bad,
They can really make you mad
Other things just make you swear & curse
When you're chewing on life's gristle
Don't grumble, give a whistle
And this'll help things turn out for the best

Always look on the bright side of life (whistle)
Always look on the light side of life (whistle)

If life seems jolly rotten
There's something you've forgotten
And that's to laugh & smile & dance & sing
When you're feeling in the dumps
Don't be silly chumps
Just purse your lips & whistle–
that's the thing

Always look on the bright side of life (whistle)
Come on, always look on the right side of life, (whistle)

For life is quite absurd
And death's the final word
You must always face the curtain with a bow
Forget about your sin - give the audience a grin
Enjoy it - it's your last chance anyhow

So always look on the bright side of death (whistle)
Just before you draw your terminal breath (whistle)

Life's a piece of shit
When you look at it
Life's a laugh and death's a joke, it's true
You'll see it's all a show
Keep 'em laughing as you go
Just remember that the last laugh is on you

Always look on the bright side of life (whistle) [x2]

Come on guys, cheers up...

Always look on the bright side of life...
Always look on the bright side of life...
Worse things happen at sea, you know
Always look on the bright side of life...

I mean - what have you got to lose?
You know, you come from nothing
- you're going back to nothing
What have you lost? NOTHING!

Always look on the bright side of life.............

(this is for you, the dear friend of mine who didn't have a "happy" day yesterday... cheer up! :) you know who you are..) mp3

Tuesday, 24 June 2003


something you wouldn't want to receive from your HR dept:

It is advised that you come to work dressed according to your salary. If we see you wearing $350 Prada sneakers and carrying a $600 Gucci bag we assume you are doing well financially and therefore you do not need a raise. If you dress poorly, you need to learn to manage your money better, so that you may buy nicer clothes and therefore you do not need a raise. If you dress in-between, you are right where you need to be and therefore you do not need a raise.

We will no longer accept a doctor statement as proof of sickness. If you are able to go to the doctor, you are able to come to work.

Operations are now banned. As long as you are an employee here, you need all your organs. You should not consider removing anything. We hired you intact. To have something removed constitutes a breach of employment.

Each employee will receive 104 personal days a year. They are called Saturday and Sunday.

All employees will take their vacation at the same time every year. The vacation days are as follows: January 1, August 9, and December 25.

This is no excuse for missing work. There is nothing you can do for dead friends, relatives or coworkers. Every effort should be made to have non-employees attend to the arrangements. In rare cases where employee involvement is necessary, the funeral should be scheduled in the late afternoon. We will be glad to allow you to work through your lunch hour and subsequently leave one hour early, provided your share of the work is done.

This will be accepted as an excuse. However, we require at least two weeks' notice as it is your duty to train your own replacement.

Entirely too much time is being spent in the restroom. In the future, we will follow the practice of going in alphabetical order. For instance, all employees whose names begin with 'A' will go from 8:00 to 8:20, employees whose names begin with 'B' will go from 8:20 to 8:40 and so on. If you're unable to go at your allotted time, it will be necessary to wait until the next day when your turn comes again. In extreme emergencies, employees may swap their time with a coworker. Both employees' supervisors must approve this exchange in writing. In addition, there is now a strict 3 minute time limit in the stalls. At the end of three minutes, an alarm will sound, the toilet paper roll will retract, the stall door will open, and a picture will be taken. After your second offense, your picture will be posted on the company bulletin board under the "Chronic Offenders" category.

Skinny people get 30 minutes for lunch as they need to eat more so that they can look healthy. Normal size people get 15 minutes for lunch to get a balanced meal to maintain their average figure. Fat people get 5 minutes for lunch, because that's all the time needed to drink a Slim Fast and take a diet pill.

Thank you for your loyalty to our company. We are here to provide a positive employment experience. Therefore, all questions, comments, concerns, complaints, frustrations, irritations, aggravations, insinuations, allegations, accusations, contemplations, consternation and input should be directed elsewhere.

(received via email)
tango quebec

terence, as promised, everyone check out his tango quebec weblog!

it's always great to find another person of "our generation" with a weblog.. haha.. i feel so old when i say that.. sheesh... :p

Support The Cat Welfare Society of Singapore

click to find out where to buy this

Monday, 23 June 2003

g o o d ... m o r n i n g ... m i s s ... a w....

i've finally received the piece of good news i've been anxiously awaiting over the past month - I'VE BEEN OFFERED A TEACHING POSITION WITH THE MINISTRY OF EDUCATION! HOORAY!! I HAVE THE CHANCE TO MOULD THE FUTURE IN A VERY REAL & DIRECT WAY NOW! :)

as they say, "THOSE WHO CAN, TEACH.".. last month, after i stopped working at the artshop, i decided that this statement really makes sense now (the thought of teaching as a career is not a new one to me, and one that has grown stronger with time), and i somehow had the feeling and belief that i could be a pretty good educator (haha.. don't ask me how i came to that conclusion... i've got good friends who encourage me all the time... thanks y'all! :)) above all, i have always hoped that along the way, someone should try introducing stuff like "The Socratic Method: Teaching by Asking Instead of by Telling" and other cool and seemingly effective new education methods to the system (ok, ok.. i know i may not always be allowed to do a Dead Poet's Society thingey. i see what i can do, i guess...)

i've kept my application pretty low-key in my blog this month and past as i've not really been all that confident about making it in, what with all the competition.

all that wait has been worth it! it's really hard to describe how i feel now.. i guess the best would be to describe it as "anticipating with excitement and embracing the challenge ahead.." imagine being able to directly impact the future through the feelings and attitudes i may be able to instill in my students...

what a great day! :)

william yang's Blood Links at Jubilee Hall tonight elevates slide shows (and their usual accompanying monologues) to a performance arts level.

although you can almost imagine sitting in a cosy living room, with a couple of friends, listening to his narration on the diaspora of his ancestors and still-alive relatives while he flashes through 500 over slides of people, scenary, food and messy kitchens, the whole show had a theatrical feel to it, which made it a rather unusual performance.

the funniest bit was definitely when he shared, in a lighthearted manner, what his conservative Asian family asked him pointedly, shortly after they realised he was gay: "Do you have AIDS?".. hahaha... how completely without tact..

here's one of his pictures - click to enlarge

Sunday, 22 June 2003

on death and dying

last night, i dreamt that i have SARS. in my blurry, non-sequential dream world, i remember stepping up to a temperature check station somewhere and discovering that my temperature was 37.7 degrees celsius. i know it is somewhat below when we would usually press the panic button, but i just KNEW i had SARS.. you know what i mean? that certainty that you can have in your dreams about something, only because it is a DREAM and ANYTHING is possible...

i brushed the dream aside (actually i forgot about it until some moments ago) thinking that it must be something to do with my unknown subconscious fear (yes, despite the concern about SARS being around for so long and Singapore already being taken off the list) until i noticed this book "Life Lessons: How our Mortality can Teach us about Life and Living" by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross and David Kessler on my sister's book shelf just now. funny i never noticed it there before or given it much thought. i flipped through it casually and spotted this paragraph...

"We are like a pie: we give a piece to our parents, we give a piece to our loves, we give a piece to our children, and we give a piece to our careers. At the end of life, some people have not saved a piece for themselves- and don’t even know what kind of pie they were. You don't have to wait until you are dying to find out what kind of pie you are."

it was a chapter about living authentically and asking "if you only had a few days left, how would you live your life differently?"

i was struck by how random events like my dream and the book fit together so mysteriously. coincidence? synchronicity?
weekend benders

Today was one of those unexpectedly eventful and fun long days. A couple of us started the afternoon with a Streats-organised wine appreciation masterclass at One Fullerton. For $25, we learnt about and tried out 6 different types of quality wines, about the different shapes and types of wineglasses, and after that had a free-flow of superb cabernet sauvignon, shiraz, riesling, chardonnay, sweet whites, foie gras tarts and other yummy finger foods!

We then staggered out half intoxicated and hung around the area and decided to join in the fun with the teeny crowd squeezed around the spewing Merlion. Young girls no more than 18 or 19 had been there since 8am and were then screaming and taking photos and queuing up for autographs of their favourite idols… the boyband 5566! :O

click for larger pic

One of our friends actually knew someone in the crowd who managed to get her vcd autographed. We found out that this was what all the fuss was for...

click for larger pic

We then decided that we were too old for all that (besides, we were getting tired from screaming and waving) and sat down at Gloria Jeans for coffees and guess who we saw coming along??

Our favourite SM Lee! Wow!! How cool can this get??

click for larger pic

And as the evening arrived, we were treated to the patriotism-stirring sight of three copters and a chinook carrying a giant Singapore flag across the bay, probably rehearsing for National Day!!! :D

click for larger pic

We ended the night with some mindblowingly awesome singing by Nuris and guitar strumming by Darren @ The Fat Frog Café at Substation.. They perform every Sat nite (10pm to 2am) and are really really good!

What an awesome day! :D

Saturday, 21 June 2003

Nagomi Makuri

.... "is one of the most popular San-X Character, they are the mysterical (sic) sea creatures... " (so says the website which has cartoons showing the strange tadpole/whale creature looking sickly after eating pink flowers...)

aiyoh! so cute!!!

i find it irresistably adorable.. and saw a bunch of large and small ones in a girl friend's car just now.. what's this thing about girls and soft fluffy toys? what's in our genetic/biological makeup that makes us so drawn to these things?? were the ancient cave people like us?? what did they make do with before they had stuffed toys?? or is this senseless desire merely one of our modern-day "diseases"??

durrhhh... :p hahahaha... random thoughts revolving around things of little importance.... such is my mind on weekends... :)

Friday, 20 June 2003

the global soul

caught the global soul by theatreworks just now.... some of the audience started walking out midway. a handful of those who stayed on (including us) were so completely bewildered and confused by what was going on that we were frantically flipping through our equally abstract programme booklets looking for clues, even in the darkness of the theatre...

there were slow butoh movements, chinese operatic singing, narratives, some cool korean operatic singing, vigorous dancing, and interesting coloured lights on the walls... we read that it was something about travel - "time travel, travels in our imagination, travels in our heart, travels in our memory, travels to find the meaning of life, travel for business, travel for leisure..."..

our own minds did quite a bit of travelling midway through the show and never quite returned until curtains down...

Thursday, 19 June 2003

job vacancy

i've been offered and recommended a motley array of jobs since i left the artshop, from working for the civil defence to being a writer and doing retail.. but this latest email from good pal Lynn takes the cake..


Uncle Ho Holdings, Malaysia's largest manufacturer, distributor and retailer of quality pirated and bootleg VCDs, DVDs, Audio CDs, CD-ROMS seeks suitable candidates for our rapidly expanding organisation.

From our humble beginnings in Petaling Street in 1998, we are Currently operating more than 68,000 outlets in the Klang Valley & Johor Baru. We have managed to secure at least 4 stalls outside every convenience shop, 8 stalls outside every coffee shop and 50 stalls at every pasar malam.

We're expanding into every housing and commercial areas, making us the biggest outdoor retailing company in the world with over 16 million discs sold daily.

Our high-tech multi million ringgit manufacturing facilities are now operated on ships anchored in international waters to circumvent local copyright laws.

We are gearing for an IPO(Initial Public Offering) and are in the process of applying for MSC status as Malaysia's largest multimedia company.

Be a Franchisee

We offer exciting and profitable franchising opportunities for retrenched workers, unemployed individuals and ex-convicts. - Set-up cost is a low RM500, including an inventory of 150 titles, portable iron stands, plywood and red table cloth. - As the franchisor, we'll provide you with protection against local gangsters, unsatisfied customers, enforcement officers and post bail if required.

All confiscated items are our responsibilty and will be returned to you within 2 working days. - You will be rotated with other resellers from nearby areas to reduce the rate of return or exchange for defective copies.

- For an additional investment of RM1200, a battered 25-year-old car will be provided as a mobile store. - As part of the Uncle Ho Network, you'll be provided with access to VIEWS (tm)(VCD Inspectors Early Warning System). By placing well trained informers in every enforcement agencies, we're able to eliminate the 'surprise element'.

- While we take every precaution to warn you of impending raids, we highly recommend the purchase of an unlicensed walkie talkie. You'll be able to network with other franchisees through the wireless system and receive additional news and warnings. As the largest purchaser of Motorola GP300 Walkie Talkies, we're also able to supply you units at very Attractive prices.

Our Mission Statement
- To provide Malaysian youths with employment and a stable source of income. - To help promote Malaysia as the top regional technology and multimedia hub in the true spirit of 'Malaysia Boleh'.

- To make available in Malaysia the latest blockbuster 30 days before its international release.

- To fight American hegemony by reducing the profits of Hollywood studios and Bill Gates. - To place a stall every 25 feet on every five foot ways throughout Malaysia. - To reduce the rate of defective discs to 25%. - To send every VHS player into early retirement and to achieve total extinction of the format by by 2004.

Join Us Full Time (Vacancies Available KL/PJ/Cyberjaya)

Reseller (26,000 positions, Nationwide)

Job Description: Operate mobile five-foot way stalls.

Requirements: Preferably chinese males aged 16 - 22 with blond hair. Possession of own waist pouch to store X-Rated titles will be an added advantage.

Benefits: Flexi-hours and additional one 'day off' each year during major annual operasi.

Graphic Artist (3 positions, Cyberjaya)

Job Description: Design covers/inlays for movie titles. Copy latest movie listings from IMDB's website. Requirements: Very rudimentary knowledge of Photoshop. Ability to design blockbuster-looking or porno-looking covers for mediocre movies will be an added advantage. Benefits: Free 10 copies of (pirated) software programs every month.

Camera Operator (15 positions, Klang Valley)

Job Description: Capture movies being screened in cinemas without being noticed. Requirements: Ability to operate camcorder. Good knowledge of seating positions in major cineplexes so as to capture entire screen without tilt or distortion. Ability to hold your cough for 90 minutes and munch popcorn silently is an added advantage.

Benefits: Free popcorn and movie passes every month.

Purchasing Officer (1 position, Cyberjaya)

Job Description: To buy back consficated items at a reasonable price.

Requirements: Preferably Malays. Good negotiation skills. Ex-employees of city and town councils are encouraged to apply.

Benefits: Easy settling of parking summons and other fines.

Please send your resume to:

The Group Human Resource Manager.

Syarikat Kumpulan Uncle Ho VCD, DVD, CD, CD-ROM Holdings & Group Of Companies (Malaysia)(1998) Sdn Bhd.
E-Mail: carikerja_uncleho@m...

Community Service / News / Promotions


* As a responsible corporate citizen, we provide free Video-to-VCD conversion for all MAS cabin crew, subject to subject in video. * We offer big discounts on (un-sellable) art house films and award-winning Iranian movies as a way of promoting quality films to the masses. * Mother's Day Special - Special pack of 10 movies to watch with your mother non-stop this Sunday.

Guaranteed no sex scenes. Promotional price: RM 30

* New stalls opening in front of KLIA Main Terminal Building this June & in Taman Negara this July.
more on walking...

my legs are not wobbly anymore! :) amazing what a long rest can do .. slept till 11.30am and woke up just in time for homecooked lunch. have been sitting around since fixing up my camera for a city photoshoot later! fun! and the weather looks great!

found another local walking enthusiast while surfing the net…

Take a walk, Singapore, it's good for you - By Leong Phei Phei ...great article on walking in Singapore..

found that walking has a really large following in the US. they even have 4-day events where participants walk some 50km along coastal routes and forest trails. maybe I should set up some kind of walking club to promote this wholesome activity in Singapore and raise some funds for charity in the meantime.. hahaha... just hope i attract more than just ah peks and ah sohs..
miss wobbly

my regular weekly running/swimming partner and i decided to push ourselves a little harder today. after completing our regular MacRitchie reservoir cross-country run (a 5km route - through the undulating cool forest trail before hitting the boardwalk along the lovely reservoir at dusklight back to the "zigzag" bridge), we walked along Lornie Rd from MacRitchie to Adam Rd food centre for dinner.

as if that was not enough exercise, we carried on walking after our satay, briyani, fried hokkien mee and cans of calamansi as it was nice and breezy, chatting along the way, while in the meantime trying to reach our respective homes.

i eventually got home just half an hour ago, after walking, i reckon, about 10km from MacRitchie???

my legs are all wobbly now. i shall just sit and read a book at a nice cafe tomorrow to recover! :) hope the weather holds out.. finally a day to get away from teaching art to the kids.. peace and quiet.. phew... :p

Tuesday, 17 June 2003

The Art Of Walking

“I have met with but one or two persons in the course of my life who have understood the art of walking.” - Henry David Thoreau

“Above all, do not lose your desire to walk: every day I walk myself into a state of well-being and walk away from every illness; I have walked myself into my best thoughts, and I know of no thought so burdensome that one cannot walk away from it” - Danish philosopher S?ren Kierkegaard (1813-1855)

I haven’t been running much. Reason is I’ve been walking a LOT. Something like two hours a day to get from Point A to Point B or from town to home. Funny enough, when I first started walking instead of taking public transport, I used to be really embarrassed to tell anyone ‘cos part of the reason why I was doing so was really to save on transport costs (which to most people is a necessary evil, and something rather silly to scrimp on). Yet, once I started walking, I realised that there was really no place too far to walk to, as long as I had time. And the more I walked, the more energized and serene I felt. The solitude of a long walk, and the adrenalin of the exercise it provided started to prove irresistible. Even the heat and humidity was not apparent to me, only when it made me yearn for a well-deserved cold drink from a 7-eleven store along the way. Suddenly, I didn’t like public transport anymore. I really loved to walk.

When I go on my long walks, I feel like Forrest Gump running across the country for no particular reason, yet achieving all sorts of unexpected results. I look forward to all my walks with a deep anticipation of what crazy ideas and new thoughts would come into my head along the way. I always have my little black notebook and Pilot V5 pen to scribble it down. None of my walks have ever disappointed me. I’ve walked to sort out my problems. And I’ve walked to think through my dreams and goals. I’ve walked to conceive new business strategies. And I’ve walked to understand perplexing people, situations and concepts. The longer the walk, the clearer my head. And I see a lot more possibilities in life, in work, in my relationships.

Just me, my thoughts and my feet. It still surprises me how simple everything is.
singapore in the positive

it's always nice to read something positive about singapore written by a foreigner. i think a lot of us are resigned to the idea that the outside world either hates us or loves bashing us and finding faults with our (err... very) "unique" system, especially when our very talented civil servants keep coming up with the most "imaginative" policies like banning chewing gum and fining people for not flushing toilets... i don't completely blame these foreign bashers, i guess, since there are definitely many areas where improvements can and should be made and it is quite natural for humans to be rather negative or skeptical when they encounter something they don’t understand

nonetheless, here's a little line from Richard (The Peking Duck)

"Singapore is in many ways a beautiful little paradise, perhaps the closest thing to utopia on the planet."

click to read the full and (in my opinion) balanced entry from the "accidental expat"

definitely a nice way to start the morning… :)
random things i read today that intrigued me

"Dutch researchers report that at a blood alcohol level of 0.04% - reached by drinking two glasses of wine in less than an hour - the brain's 'oops' response stops working properly and people no longer realize they have made a mistake." ... oooh...

Princeton scholar Julian Jaynes says the greatest scientific and mathematical discoveries happen in the "Three Bs: the bed, the bath, and the bus." .. umm... offices and labs must be the least conducive places then!.... sigh..

A Taiwanese couple that has been married for 85 years (!!!) is the new Guinness Book of World Records champ for the longest marriage. Each over 100 years old, the two have a total of 110 children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren (see a bit more of the story here) .... wow... pretty impressive..

there are actually a couple more but they have translated into personal or work projects so i shall not mention them here for the time being till i complete them and get some interesting results.. :)

Sunday, 15 June 2003

write it down, make it happen

here's something to do on a quiet, uneventful weekend afternoon:

"Compose your own list of goals you want to achieve before you die. Go to an expresso bar and buy a latte, or put on a pot of peppermint tea at your own house. Set the stereo for the kind of music you like best and start to write. Visualize EVERYTHING you want. Write fast. Do not linger over the page. Do not be afraid of wanting too much. Write down even those ambitions which you have no practical means of accomplishment. If you find yourself dismissing a goal as grandiose or far-fetched, write it anyway and put a star next to it. Come up with a list of 100 goals if possible (you can add to it over the next couple of days too)"

the idea behind this is that once you write down your dreams and aspirations, you are like hanging up a sign that says, "Open for Business." and that you declare yourself "in the game". It is the first step towards achieving them and helps you understand what you want. it doesn't mean that we believe our own efforts are sufficient. In fact, a lot of these goals require a deep faith in "divine intervention" and acknowledging that a higher power is involved in guiding, watching out and caring for us along the way.

read this in Write It Down, Make It Happen: Knowing What You Want - and Getting It! by Henriette Anne Klauser , which i found to be not so much a self-help book, but more a highly readable practical book of fun and inspiring ideas. Devoured half the book last Friday at People's Park Complex hawker centre over a bowl of Mr Bean tau huay with glutinous rice balls peanut soup.

Cheapest copy can be found at Success Shop in Peninsular Plaza for $9.90.

Saturday, 14 June 2003

Lomo Cats

the lomography society is having an exhibition now at alleybar along emerald hill on our local alleycats to raise funds for the cat welfare society.

i happen to have two pictures of one of my neighbourhood stray cats taken with my supersampler lomo a while ago. it is not there anymore! hope they didn't get to him! :( i didn't submit the pics for the exhibition but here they are:

lomo cat lomo cat

Friday, 13 June 2003

Hymn of Promise

by Natalie Sleeth

In the bulb there is a flower; in the seed, an apple tree;
In cocoons, a hidden promise: butterflies will soon be free!
In the cold and snow of winter there's a spring that waits to be,
unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.

There's a song in every silence, seeking word and melody;
There's a dawn in every darkness, bringing hope to you and me.
From the past will come the future; what it holds, a mystery,
unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.

In our end is our beginning; in our time, infinity.
In our doubt, there is believing; in our life, eternity.
In our death, a resurrection; at the last a victory,
unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.
i found a tremendous amount of comfort and peace in the hymn above which i found on a friend's blog today... God's unchanging love is indeed our greatest anchor in times of despair and uncertainty! Praise the Lord!

Thursday, 12 June 2003


(stomping in annoyance at how poorly i answered some interview questions just now).. grr... grr...

i have THAT feeling, you know...?

Wednesday, 11 June 2003


Chew 80 times before swallowing your food.

While eating some really grainy duck rice today for dinner, i was suddenly struck by how insufficiently i was chewing my food. Not that i was choking, but i found that on average, i took no more than 5 to 10 munches before gobbling every mouthful.. a habit that was formed clearly from my early days of hectic lunches and take away food.. I know we are supposed to chew more to help digestion.. but how important is it?

I came home to surf the net and found this interesting term called Fletcherism, promoted by a man named Horace Fletcher, (1849-1919). He evolved this system concerned chiefly with the slow mastication (chewing) of food. Apparently, if you are a follower of Fletcherism, you will chew each bite of food until it becomes a watery mass in your mouth before swallowing (which on average should take between 80 to 100 chews! :O) This has two effects. First, if you chew a bite of food that long, you will be consuming your meal at a slower rate. Secondly, the reduction of this food to a watery mass means that it will be less difficult to extract nutrients from the food. I also read somewhere that "acid/alkaline (ph) balance is important for normal cell function. Alkaline saliva is needed to make acidic grains become alkaline through chewing (grains are naturally acidic). Saliva also contains enzymes that help to break down complex carbohydrates into simple sugars. Sufficient chewing time is necessary for this initial digestive process to occur.

i don't mean to alarm anyone but i think this is a pretty good practice that we should all try to follow.. after all, if we can't even slow down to enjoy our food, isn't that pretty sad??

Among Fletcherism's practitioners were Thomas Edison, John D. Rockefeller, and some chap called Upton Sinclair.
quotes to ponder over

here's another quote for you, karen:

He who binds to himself a joy
doth the winged life destroy.
But he who kisses the joy as it
flies lives in Eternity's sunrise.

- William Blake

one of my all-time favourites :)
bringing joy to the kids of the world

happy children

started doing the first two of my series of children's art workshops for Creative Hands over this month (click to see more pics from my class) - the kids were so cute!!

other happy things i did today:

- bought a packet of trail mix from five loaves @ cold storage $5.80 (i can't believe something this healthy could be so tasty – you must try it if you find it)

- bought the latest copy of SELF from holland v $9.95 (they've got pretty solid health & fitness articles. The best I’ve found so far..)

- drank a glass of mango milk shake for $1.50 at Taiwan Food next to library@orchard

- took a 2 hour walk home from orchard and stopped to talk to a bubbly woman from a photo developing shop along the way and she chatted with me excitedly about her tankful of mollies (really fascinating fishes which constantly look pregnant)

this is the first day in almost a month i have allowed myself to indulge in little luxuries like snacks, magazines and the milk shake... i can't believe i have been living so cheaply and yet so contentedly... haha... austerity rules! (at least for now.. hee hee..)

Tuesday, 10 June 2003

woo hoo! i'm no ordinary* sheep

You are a -
Neutral Sheep!
Congrats - you do what you like! You make your own rules, not follow the flock!

Which flock do you follow?

this quiz was made by alanna


*characterless, common, commonplace, conventional, dull, fair, familiar, garden, garden variety, generic, habitual, homespun, household, humble, indifferent, inferior, mean, mediocre, modest, normal, pedestrian, plain, plain Jane, plastic, prosaic, quotidian, routine, run-of-the-mill, second-rate, simple, so-so, stereotyped, undistinguished, uneventful, unexceptional, uninspired, unmemorable, unnoteworthy, unpretentious, unremarkable, usual, vanilla, workaday
8 stomach-sculpting moves

click here! say goodbye to roly poly tummies and hello to solid abs!! :D

ok ok.. lame.. :p

most men exercise for fitness (or just to pass their IPPT) and most women for vanity reasons.. that's just the way it is... hahaha... although one study does show that "Running Increases Brain Power In Mice" (i know you are not a mouse..) and here are 10 (Really Good) Reasons to Exercise ...

still not convinced? here's another 50 or even 100 Reasons Why You Have To Get Off Your Butt And Work Out!

actually, i believe we are all aware of the numerous benefits of regular exercise. it's just that most of us lack the discipline (not time) to keep it going.. :) keep it up if you are already doing that!

Sunday, 8 June 2003

your ideal life

I’ve found another one:

“Spend an hour and write down what an ideal life for you would look like.

Have you ever written down the people, objects, work, feelings and home which would comprise your ideal life? Why not put on some tea or coffee right now, sit in a comfy place and start writing it out?”

I’ve stumbled upon several articles recently on the topic of finding one’s life purpose and discovering what we want in our lives. Interestingly, these articles are largely similar in what they advocate as a starting point:

Taking time out to picture what your idea of an ideal life is like – down to the details of the way you want to live, the people you want around you, the work you do, the lifestyle you enjoy, the way you generally feel, the fun you have etc.

While some naysayers will argue that too much planning takes the “fun” and “surprise” element out of life, I think I have figured out the logic behind this. The idea is, if we don’t know what the ideal life to us looks like, we won’t recognize it even when we actually “make it” or are already living it (“personal definition of success”). Also, life can lack clarity of direction (which way now?) and a sense of purpose/meaning (what am I doing all this for?) and we may not be able to make decisions confidently when we find ourselves faced with various opportunities and options along the way (why A and not B?). We will be easily “seduced” by society’s definition of an “impressive lifestyle” or by our inherent tendency towards comfort (i.e. staying in the comfort zone), even if these are vastly different from what we really desire in our “fulfilling” or “ideal” life.

Living away from our values and what is really important to us as a result of having to maintain an overly expensive or luxurious lifestyle can lead us to burn-outs, feeling of disillusionment and restlessness and the constant fear of having wasted our lives.

Definitely something to think about, if we can find time, eh? :)

Saturday, 7 June 2003

you can’t have your cake and eat it

have you ever been annoyed by a common saying?

on a long walk home today, while i was trying to think through some particularly perplexing questions in my life (walking is the best way for me when it comes to stuff like that), this cliche kept randomly popping into my head. i know it has something to do with making an either/or choice, that you can’t reconcile two mutually incompatible situations.. yet the reason why it annoys me is, i just kept thinking "if i have my cake and can't get to eat it, then why let me have the cake in the first place??"

thinking that i might have misunderstood the statement, i came home and surfed the net. besides finding a LOT of recipes on making cakes (using Google), i also found other versions of the statement, such as:

  • you can’t eat your cake and still have it (huh?... sounds pretty logical, eh??.. but doesn't this change the entire meaning??)
  • "Wolde ye bothe eate your cake, and haue your cake?” (old or middle english.. wah.. very cheem.. written in John Heywood’s A Dialogue Conteynyng Prouerbes and Epigrammes of 1562.. very hard to understand.. decided not to crack brain over this one..)
  • you can’t eat your cake and have it, too (still rather confusing... but this one sounds more like i can't get to keep the scraps if i can't finish the cake at one go.. hahaha)
  • eat your cake and have it (by John Keats at the beginning of his poem On Fame in 1816 - another one i can't understand... if i have already eaten it, surely i would already have it, eh? voice of resignation?? haha..)
  • have your cake and eat it (same as original, except in the positive - the one used by all the cake recipes.. an absolute cliche!)
so i remain as confused as ever.... and continue to dislike the saying as much as before..

Thursday, 5 June 2003

chek jawa

amazingly healthy soft coralsclick for pics...

months after chek jawa in pulau ubin was narrowly saved from the evil crutches of economic development gone haywire, i finally got to go there this morning with my sister.

the lowest tide of 0.2m came in at an unearthly 8.20am (and the next one was only at 8.20pm! darkness!), which meant that we had to get up at 5.30 am to get to the island on time. but believe me, it was well worth every bit of effort!

to prepare ourselves, we diligently printed out the whole long checklist of ultra-cool stuff we were supposed to see, as well as this funny hand-drawn map of exactly where we were supposed to see them.. unfortunately, we didn't manage to see the seahorse, the octopus, the starfishes and the horseshoe crab.. felt a little bit cheated..

click to see what we saw instead.. pretty nice anyway, huh? :)
the new baygon ad

The New Baygon Ad

[via email. thanks Lynn :)]
gym balling

i love the ad that goes.. "When was the last time you did something for the first time?"

so when i was at Raffles City today and saw a gym ball selling for $19.90 instead of the usual $29.90 at Royal Sporting house, i went and got myself one as i have never used a gym ball in my life...

according to the instructions in the box, the gym ball is "one simple product (that) improves strength, endurance, and flexibility", "isolates the buttock, thigh, lower back, and abdominal muscles", is "recommended by medical doctors, chiropractors, physical therapists and personal trainers" and "Whether your goal is flexibility, strength, or aerobic fitness, the gym ball does it all!"

irrresistable, ya??

hahaha... in case you need a bit of background, i'm a sucker for TVmedia ads as well.. :p we have the Ginsu knife, the AbShaper, the Magic Duster.. oh dear, i could just go on...!!

Tuesday, 3 June 2003

working for my bowl of laksa

ever since i left the artshop, i've become an odd-job labourer of sorts. for some reason, my application for a "real" job (read: something that a typical Asian parent would readily approve of and will happily boast to the relatives/neighbours about..) has not come through even after a puzzling three weeks. Though i'm not a great fan of Carl Jung (and hence of his theory of "reading the signs"), i do have a nagging feeling that there is perhaps something else i am supposed to (a) think about, or (b) work on, before the greater powers give me a hint on what is the best way forward in terms of my career. with this thought in mind, i became open to watching for "signs"..

and this is what i got over so far: a motley stream of seemingly random consigned and personal projects coming my way, and from equally diverse sources... in the past month or so, i have been given a chance to write an article for a magazine, to write an article for a website, to design a website for a small retail store, to come up with a proposal for customer service training for a local boutique chain, to paint glassware, to teach art to children, and to provide relief teaching in a secondary school in the East.. Inspired (rightfully or mistakenly) by these small "successes", i popped down to the national library today and got myself the "Complete Idiot's Guide to Making Money in Freelancing" thinking... maybe i was cut out to be a freelancer!

i found a checklist which gave me some (rather vague) clues. anyway, my answers are in brackets next to the questions (which were written in such a "Idiot's Guide"-style that i couldn't stop smiling when i read them..)

If you answer "True" to any of the following items, think twice before you pursue a career as a freelancer.

1. You crave companionship. In a pinch, you'll talk to the gerbil. [hahaha.. no lah]
2. You take rejection personally. Really personally. [False]
3. You think a note that says "Not suited to our current needs" means you're fat, stupid and ugly. [i know i am not fat,stupid and ugly :)]
4. You'd rather be flayed alives than move back with the Parental Units. [i do stay with my parents]
5. You're too proud (or shy or well brought up) to sell yourself. [i haven't found a bigger ego-tripper.. hahaha..]
6. You didn't go to college for four years so you could work as a temp when money gets tight. [I'm an odd-job labourer now.. whatdoyouexpect??]
7. If you can't play tennis every Wednesday at noon, you pout and stamp your well-shod foot. [i used to work really really odd hours in retail, so.. False again]
8. You refuse to buy anything off the rack. [False]
9. Your self-esteem fluctuates with your bank account. [hahaha.. False]
10. You think "freelancing" means never having to miss an episode of your favourite TV programme. [ I don't watch TV, so I'm ok]

hey! i could be a free-lancer!!

Monday, 2 June 2003

gerbil paradise

we think maybe she's gone to join these merry creatures..
goodbye koochie

Click for tribute page

my friend's pet gerbil just died over the weekend. :(

it was a lovely furball, the cutest you have ever seen...

bye bye our little friend!

click here for the tribute page

Sunday, 1 June 2003

our favourite sm lee

another book has come out on senior minister lee (wow, is it like the third or fourth already??) saw it selling at a news stand at sim lim sq today while jostling with crowds buying digital cameras and gawking at latest range of electronic goodies (none of which i can buy due to my temporary state of pecuniary embarrassment). i've always admired him incredibly for the work he has done on singapore and the way he speaks what he feels, no matter how others feel about it (just read in the papers today that he told the US to cultivate its friends & allies with more "tender loving care" so as not to lose them.. pretty daring and frank i feel..). And when i read his quote from the book and he said: "It is amazing the number of highly intelligent persons in the world who make no contribution at all to the well-being of their fellow men", i was totally in awe... totally...

on the other hand, of course, we have those of us who go beyond just admiring mr lee.. they actually want to .. err.. clone him??

click Talking Cock for the "news article" that had me in fits of laughter... or just click on pic below..

click for full story in Talking Cock

question is: if we have more mr lees.. would we have more singapores???