Tuesday, October 31, 2006
and straight-forward name, but for the fact the words are senget and it has a thatched roof out front. This Chinese-owned halal food establishment has an overall Malay village feel to it with bare cement floors, bamboo and ropes used liberally in its decor, unshaved and untreated wooden doors, chicken baskets as light hoods and woven trays hung on the walls bearing the names of the local delights served. Wow, that was a mouthful. Anyway, the place has a killer "Prawn Mee" and "Assam Laksa", but the signature "Mee Jawa", "Rojak", "Mango and Squid Salad", "Char Kuey Teow" doesn't quite cut it. Also try its "ABC" and "Kedongdong Juice". I was there with company so we managed to order all the above dishes. We passed the dishes around, ala Russian Roulette.
Go there sometime, but be warned, it closes at 9:30pm, even on weekends.
Monday, October 30, 2006
my other colleagues:
Me: Dime porque lloras (Why are you crying?)
LC: De felicidad (Because I'm happy)
Me: y porque te ahogas (Why are you so choked up?)
LC: por la soledad (From loneliness)
You get the idea. The cute thing is that LC does it in a nasal Parit Buntar Hokkien twang. Hehe. From the music video I saw (you have my permission to roll your eyes), it seems that Marc Anthony's dying and doesn't want J. Lo to love him anymore, hence No Me Ames (Don't love me).
Check it out, people.
PS: If it ain't Spanish, feel free to flame me. I was too lazy to check. Foreign languages aren't really my forte. Wanted to take tagalog as an elective during uni days, but that plan fell through. :(.
PPS: Took a cue from Daniel, he and his prolific music posts.
Friday, October 27, 2006
For the uninitiated, I'm a "banana" who can't read Chinese. I can speak pass-able Mandarin, but it has a Cantonese twang to it and stumble for the words at times. However, this didn't stop me from finding this little gem in the Chinese daily Guang Ming. I'm making an educated guess here, so please comment if I got it wrong.
Apparently, the guy in the photo is holding some kind of erectile dysfunction test strip. It has some cute cartoons on it, and I'm sure it's simple enough to figure out.
1) Take the strip, afix it to your flacid penis
2) Go to sleep
3) Results in the morning
If the strip broke, Hallelujah! Your equipment is in tip-top condition. If the strip just teared a little, beware... Lastly, if the strip is as it was from the night before... jeng, jeng, jeng. It's the Penile Retirement Home for you.
After reading this, don't get some smart ass ideas and try to make one for yourself. A papercut in the nether regions ain't pretty. :P
Thursday, October 26, 2006
Snapped the pic with my trusty camera phone while waiting at a traffic light at Jalan Puchong. It's the wall of an exhaust service center apparently owned by a Mr. Lee aka Mr. Muffler. Sounds more like an assassin to me. Heh.
Wednesday, October 25, 2006
In addition to Amarin Heavenly Thai and Bangkok Expresso, Good Evening Bangkok at One Utama is the third restaurant I have visited from the SEA Cuisine restaurant chain and it does not disappoint. I was there with a bunch of colleagues to celebrate HSW's (bubbly girl who never fails to look 3 8 in her photos. Hehe.) birthday. Actually, we didn't decide on Thai food initially, we wanted to get a table a Chilli's. We didn't book a table and the lousy treatment we got from the seating staff made us decide to take our business elsewhere. The staff was really brusque: I cannot guarantee you a table for 10. If got table also ar, need separate one ar.
At the "Good Evening Bangkok", the service was really good. The head waitress attended to us and she was very helpful and humourous at all times. Our dinner consisted of Mien Kam (an appetizer of some kind of herbal leaf, chillies, dried shrimp and garlic which was really nicer than it looked), Som Tam (papaya salad), tow varieties of Tom Yam, asparagus, Kai Lan and mixed seafood in chilly oil. Our dinner party was really boisterous (drunk vikings?), and I must say sorry for ruining the ambience of the other diners. And the end of the dinner, we had cake-- a Banana Chocolate from Secret Recipe. Having stashed the cake in the restaurants chiller on arrival, I requested a waiter/waitress to retrieve it for us. He/she was really androgynous, we couldn't decide. My colleagues made a remark that the way I was talking to he/she was kinda dripping with honey and my eyes were practically leaking "electricity". And our close proximity didn't help either. Well, all that suspicion about me trying to seduce the staff didnt get us a a discount or bigger portions, but my HSBC credit card did get us a 15% discount.
When the serving staff brought the cake over, the knife they provided us with was really scary. I think it was nearly one feet long with a pointed end. The kind that has an evil glint to it. It wouldn't be hard to imagine Lorena Bobbit clutching it in her hands. A knife that could make your balls shrink. We sang the customary birthday song and I must say I was bad for accidentally blowing the candles before the birthday girl got her chance. *sheepish grin*. One colleague even sang one buddhist chant version. We all went home happy that night, and in case you were wondering the waiter/waitress didn't slip me his/her phone number. Hah!
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
A nice hazy view from the 14th floor of a apartment block in Serdang Perdana. One can just make out the el cheapo fairy lights decor at Mine's Wonderland below. Though I spent a year in the choking smog of Jakarta, the haze still irritates me. It's different from the wafting smoke from clove ciggies and the uncontrolled emmissions from vehicles that should have been "put to sleep" years go. It's a different type of suffocation. In Jakarta, one can look forward to going home to KL for relatively fresh air, but if the problem is back home, mana lagi nak pergi? 15 years back, when my family used to travel to KL from the east coast during school holidays (I remember visiting Hankyu Jaya and Yaohan as a really thrilling experience), I found the air burnt. Today, I can't really tell the difference between fresh air and city air. Still, the haze is too filthy not to notice.
Monday, October 23, 2006
With that out of the way, speeches by the VIPs. Dato' Tan was his usual self of bad Malay and shouting. . Clap, clap, clap. Yawn. Next was the IGP. His speech writer was very inspired, so it dragged for quite some time. I loved the whole "...dibelenggu social problems... phrase. As it was nearing waktu berbuka, he stepped it up a notch. After all that, a fire was lit to represent the "fire of love in our hearts". A few songs were presented by Fo Guang Shan and the Catholic Youths. Finally, everyone was given lit candles and more singing went on, namely the theme song "Spread the Seeds of Love" (kind of catchy actually). A prayer was also made to Buddha, Allah, God and all the other pantheon of gods for those who have violent tendencies. Too bad there was no crowd, and even with the rain, spirits were not dampened. Perhaps it did do some good.
Speak good words, do good deeds, think good thoughts
Friday, October 20, 2006
The facial consisted of several steps. Some seaweed cleanser, a papaya-pineapple enzyme mask (which was supposed to be tingly, but due to my thick skin, I didn't feel a thing), some AHA thingy that ended with a cooling rub from a pair of mini crystal balls with handles and lastly a purifying mask. The last mask was kinda like a mud mask with gauze over the face and breathing holes so that I don't suffocate under the whole thing. From the pictures, it was kinda like Darth Vader meets Swamp Thing. However, the highlight of the whole treatment, was the manual black head removal. With an evil little metal rod, Janet would prick, poke and scrape her way across nearly every inch of my face. All the while she was talking about how her boyfriend had not talked to her in two days. Damn! I was grimacing the whole time. Brought tears to my eyes, especially when she worked on my nose. I thought she was trying to give me a free rhinoplasty. Goodness. The amount of grime and oil deposits she removed was disgusting. I walked out of the place feeling refreshed, but my face was a bit red and angry. At the office the next day, a colleague remarked:
"Hey Will, what's with the Jackie Chan nose?"
That facial sure paid off.
Thursday, October 19, 2006
Does it make any sense to you?
I'm sure the sketch of running water was very nice.
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
After dinner, we went off to the Sri Wawasan bridge (I think that's what its called)). Out of the seven bridges in Putraya, it's the most impressive one. A skewed, purple cable bridge. Upon reaching, we had the sesat feeling again. Most cars were stopped at the side of the road, couples all staring across the lake towards Putrajaya mosque. Some quietly holding hands, some hands more active than others. I whipped out my trusty digi cam and only managed to get some shaky night photos. I failed to capture the nocturnal mating habits of indigenous mammals in the bushes below the bridge. Hmph. Before calling it a night, we stopped at KTZ, Citrus Park. I ordered a "Double-boiled Honey Dew and Gingko Nuts". Very nice and soothing. I failed to psyche Cla into ordering supper. Seems that his days of "Em, roti telur, mee kari dan teh tarik. What are you guys ordering?" are over. Slowing down, watching what we eat... Dah kes serius ni...
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
Ethnic Malay Joints:
1) Name: Usually is Warung something, or Tomyam. Normally comes with the owner's name, e.g. Haji, Kak.
2) Decor: Wooden or bamboo fance. Lampu lip-lap. Multi-coloured fluorescent lights. Quranic verse plaques or Kaa'ba pictures.
3) Special Mention: Garish colours
Ethnic Chinese Joints:
1) Name: Kee, Ah, New or Sun something, or the more trendy numero-madness of 88, 388, 777 and whatnot.
2) Decor: Altar. White lighting. Smoke stained walls. Stainless steel counter tops. Beer posters. Last year's CNY decorations. Tiled walls. Toothpicks and soy sauce on tables, steaming bao's out front.
3) Special Mention: Migrant workers. Where are the owners?
Anything to add?
Monday, October 16, 2006
1) Come up with a new internet protocol that would've revolutionsized cyberspace
2) raise USD3,000,000 for underprivileged children in third world countries
3) have a tumultuous love life that was ridden with sordid side-affairs
4) start a cult
1) finish school
2) get a job
3) spread some love for family and friends
4) find some spiritual direction
Time well-spent, or time down the drain? It has brought me to where I am today. Who knows what will tomorrow bring. Enough of this self-reflection and philosophical. Let's move on to the festivities. This year's birthday was kinda like the past years-- Cake, dinner, hooker. Standard fare. OK, ignore the sex for cash bit. Instead of eating out, this year my mum whipped up a home-cooked meal. Doubled as a get-together with my sis and bro-in-laws. Some special dishes. Red Wine Chicken with Mee Suah and Brandy Chicken Wings (SK's recipe). After dinner was dessert, yes you guessed it, birthday cake. A tiramisu from Marriot, Putrajaya. Not quite like the one at Alexis. Celebration with friends was done over the weekend, before the big day. Had lunch with Swell Mel at Melaka St., SS2. Nice place for nyonya food (I dunno if it's authentic, but it's quite good). I recommend the mango kerabu. She got me a nice Braun Buffel leather wallet. Sweet. On Sunday, SK treated me to a facial (a creative gift! I'll blog about this later) and dinner at Cheras. Roadside steamed fish head near Payathin Foodcourt (don't ask me why it's called that). Not recommended. Sorry SK. :). In addition, she got me a bedsheet. A good birthday. How time flies... Sigh...
Friday, October 13, 2006
I hear that Dubai's a land of ridiculously-starred luxury hotels and a shopping paradise. The sales are genuine, especially for branded goods. I wonder if I can expect a souvenier from Hermes, Ermegenildo Zegna, Prada, Salvatore Ferragamo or Hugo Boss.......
Just a few days after that, we had a farewell lunch pulak. You could say that the dinner was a pre-farewell deal. Heh. Well, lunch was at Neway, One Utama. Yes, you may groan, more karaoke. Compared to Redbox, Neway gives a slightly better experience. The food is much better (taste and portion-wise). The software allows for fast forward (but is less user-friendly). Some rooms have attached bathrooms. The furnishing is classier. Another thing I have to say about the food is that the portions are obscenely large. The fish plate my colleague ordered looked like it took a whole piece of frozen dory to prepare. And it had at least two scoops of mashed potatoes on the side. You gastric juices try to find their way back into your stomach lining on sight of the dishes.
A colleague of mine once remarked that every other week, someone was either resigning, giving birth or leaving for another project. And with occasion, we'd treat it as an excuse to splurge during lunch. It isn't very healty for the body, and the wallet.
PS: The title of this post actually rhymes with one of my previous posts. Vengelyne would likely remember...
Thursday, October 12, 2006
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
fasting season and is currently airing 3 days a week. The story revolves around Qaseh, an ex-convict who was separated from her husband and children by her diabolical mother-in-law. For unknown reasons (can anyone enlighten me?), her husband Riduan remarried-- a b*tch of a wife named Maria. Maria's the loud-mouthed type who loves to go shopping, high teas with Datins and conspiring with her mother-in-law, Ummi. This adds contrast to
Qaseh's character who is resilient, pious, soft-spoken and loving. After searching for years for her lost family, Qaseh finally meets them, and Riduan begins to try to mend things with her (apparently he's still married to her). There are other difficulties abound, namely Johan who is smitten with Qaseh, and Qaseh's adolescent son who is quite uncomfortable with her status as an ex-con. Her son carries off the "stick-up-my-ass" look quite well. Watch it for its entertainment value, Maria's exaggerated dialogue and wigs, Ummi's get-away-from-me-peasant attitude and Qaseh's patience in the face of adversity. Will Qaseh get back what's rightfully hers? Stay tuned, folks.
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Passport photos an elastic past
What the hell Robert Del Naja is mumbling about you may ask? I don't know either. Enjoy.
PS: I splashed loads of water on my laptop yesterday and thank God it's still alive. Supposedly clear traffic on Tuesday (Nuzul Quran), and I chose to jam on Old Klang Road. But I'm cheerful as heck anyway. Heh!
Monday, October 09, 2006
On to the review- the place is quite nice. Each table was strewn with rose petals. Normally, I see that on the floor, but hey, anything goes. Its staff is attentive. The food is of hotel standard, but I think the happy couple chose an above average dinner set. Among the items were a lobster starter (complete with exoskeleton), shark fin with scallops, cod fish and sea cucumber. Wine was flowing freely. I think around 80 colleagues turned up, so it kinda looked like my company's annual dinner. The colleagues were more worked up than the relatives. Throw in liquor into the equation...... you can imagine the rest. It seems that it's the season to get married. With the 7th lunar month (and the 7th leap lunar month) a distant memory and the 8th month in full swing, people are rushing to get hitched. I hear stories of 4 wedding invitations in a week and back-to-back banquets. One can only go through so many chinese wedding banquets . And with red packets involved, one can easily lose the shirt off one's back. Better start setting up a fund.....
PS: The title of this post makes no sense. I remember it vividly as a joke from the show "Hey Vern, it's Ernest!". Ernest was showing off show pretty funky hairdos.
Friday, October 06, 2006
Other than mooncakes, another staple during the mooncake festival at my home is the mini yam and caltrops. The mini yams would just be steamed and eaten with sugar and caltrops boiled in salted water. I love the starchy insides. I don't know if caltrops is the right word to call it, but I saw it on a sign in The Store. You wouldn't want to put the 'other' caltrops into your mouth.
Lanterns used to be just the collapsible paper or coloured-plastic-over-metal-wire variety. But now, we see plastic, battery-operated lanterns. Stuff in some batteries, flip the swith, and voila-- flashing lights and some annoying muzak like "Moonlight Sonata". Takes the fun outta things. Anyway,
Happy Mid-Autumn Festival!
Thursday, October 05, 2006
OK, on to the review. For the benefit of those who do not know this tragic love story of forbidden love, it's about Zhu Yingtai, the daughter of a wealthy landlord and Liang Shanbo, a poor scholar. Sounds like a Bollywood script, right? Anyway, Yingtai is very extroverted and wants to go school, but her father obviously is not happy with the idea (FYI, her father's costume is a cross between Chinese period clothing and a Roman toga). Anyway, she dupes her father into allowing her to go to school dressed like a man (ala Mulan, and as usual the people are too stupid to notice, a recurring theme in many period dramas). So, on the way to school, she meets up with Shanbo, and they both become quick friends. Fast-forward 3 years, Yingtai falls in love with the idiot (as the narrator, Edwin Sumun likes to call him because he doesn't realize her true identity). Yingtai's mother fakes an illness and manages to get Yingtai to go home only to find out that it was a ploy to get her married to Ma Wencai (Edwin Sumun), the Mandarin's playboy son. So, blah, blah, blah, Yingtai drops hints at Shanbo and after a lot of beating round the bush, Shanbo comes to realize the truth. By the time he comes to ask for her hand in marriage, it's already too late as Yingtai's already promised to Wencai and obviously a penniless scholar is not exactly "The Bachelor". He goes away dejected, coughs blood into a hankerchief (another favourite of Chinese period dramas) before kicking the bucket. On her wedding day, Yingtai discovers that her love is 6-feet-under. Determined to send her father to an early grave, she demands that her bridal entourage includes mourning lanterns and joss money throwers. She also asks for a stopover at Shanbo's grave before heading to the groom's place. At the grave. she's overcome with grief. At this point, Tan Soo Suan sings with much feeling, with tears and crying in between singing. Very convincing. A storms blows out of nowhere and she jumps into the grave. After the storm settles, two giant animatronic butterflies fly out.... The End.
The story is simple and is perfectly complemented by the music and score. The costumes are interesting, with platform shoes and giant tasseled curtain tie-ups. The students' headgear resemble mortar boards and let us not forget Yingtai's dad's toga. The sets are simplistic, with cartoonish colours and minimal details. I felt that they could have done better here, but maybe bajet tidak mengizinkan. The stage is a modular construction, with several different platforms on castors. The students act as backup singers, extras and stagehands who move the pieces around during different acts. Very well done. Reminds me of Cirque du SOleil's Quidam where the extras who set up the stage and carry the props are an act of their own. The actor who played Shanbo's servant, Four-Nine was also very convincing, playing the clueless country bumpkin man-servant to perfection. He sported a Chun-Li hairdo for the part. Fantastic. It ends on the 8th of October. Go watch it.
Girls who are extroverted are an embarrasment to the family...
PS: It's in Mandarin with English subtitles. The dog was in the prop workshop. So cute!
Wednesday, October 04, 2006
A first for me actually. The story is OK, but I find that it's a frankenstein of sorts. Perhaps this is true for all titles. Little bits of stuff I've read here and there. In the centre of it all we have Lirael (duh!), a Daughther of the Clayr (a community of seers) Under-achiever that hasn't come into her power yet. An outcast of sorts among her own people. The world of Lirael consists of The Old Kingdom and Ancelstierre. In Ancelstierre, there's no magic. And the people there are kinda like muggles, like Harry Potter. Magic here is worked via Charter Marks, plucked from a unseen source and strung together. Reminds me of The Wheel of Time's One Power, where magic is worked by weaving threads from an infinite source. The story also includes the undead (main plot from Sabriel), reminscent of Wizard's First Rule's underworld. But then, I guess if one was to draw parallels, there would be much say about all the fantasy titles out there. Different authors, different angles. Sometimes, the same stories. Oh well, anything will do, as long as it puts me to sleep...
My source code / database / workflow server was moved to another location today and you know what? The OS died on me. F*ck!!!
Lesson: Don't move the server without first consulting a Feng Shui expert to make sure that the stars are correctly aligned. Anyway, the problem was solved. Turns out that the monitor resolution was too low to support the OS settings, hence causing the Windows 2003 Server to crash. Elegant, right?
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
Monday, October 02, 2006
In the evening, we were entertained by SK and HP's place again. But this time, most of the cooking was done by FK. Nippon ryori no less. She prepared several types of sushi (sake, tamago, unagi), maki, miso soup, salmon teriyaki and tempura (prawn, aubergines, ubi). Too much sushi rice. Couldn't move after dinner. Post-dinner was tea, mooncakes and watermelon. Ahhh, weekend glutonny.....