Wednesday, July 19, 2017

You Mean the World to Me



Bro was in town for mum's birthday, so as usual he would arrive on Thursday night and fly back to Singapore on Sunday night. Every Sunday he would join us for mass, and after that we would go for lunch. This year, I tweaked that plan a bit. We went for early English mass to catch a movie at noon-- "You Mean the World to Me", Malaysia's first Hokkien film. Some 'big' names in it-- Frederick Lee (looks oh-so-familiar because he is Christopher Lee's brother),  Steve Yap, John Tan, and Neo Swee Lin (from Phua Chu Kang fame). Steve Yap plays the down-and-out drunkard father who was cheated out of the family fortune by his brother, and yet manages to maintain his hunkiness. John Tan plays the crazy brother who has the mentality of a sexed-up Standard One boy, but somehow manages to be all buffed. See the pattern? LOL. Anyway, the story is based on the events in the life of the director. A heavy theme about social stigma and family ties. There's some interesting themes in the film. Firstly, I noticed that the main actor always sits down at the dinner table only to leave it 30 seconds later without touching anything. Secondly, there's a few subtle gay hints surrounding the main actor. The audience never gets to see or hear main actor's love interest. They argue over the phone. The kiss and make up over the phone.  And the main actor hardly shows any interest when his old schoolmate offers him a grope of his strumpet. All in all, I wouldn't give this a high rating, but it is a great attempt for Malaysia's first Hokkien film. And the theme song is kinda catchy.


Saturday, July 15, 2017

Cut Out Carbs

Nasi Kerabu

Nothing much of interest happened at the end of April. The only notable thing was mum's decision to start her no-carbs diet. So whenever we ate out, there was always special food considerations. SK's ex-coursemate invited us to her daughter's Upacara Mencukur Rambut, basically a traditional Malay baby shower of sorts. The baby's hair is cut in a ceremony that is observed by family and community members. Anyway, I missed that part. We arrived just in time to eat. Mum ignore the rice and went straight for the fried chicken and roast lamb. Haha.

Chicken Chop

While dining at Kakatoo in IOI City Mall, mum just ate the chicken chop, and left the mash untouched. Their mainstay is actually Nyonya food, but the price range is really a little on the high side. Wonder if they will survive for long. Even when we had cendol at Teochew Chendul, mum could actually resist. At our post-mass lunch the next day, we ate a Purple Cane where we just ordered dishes without rice. An interesting change of lifestyle.

Tofu

When SK came with chou yip angku the next day, mum also didn't touch it although it was one of her favourite foods. Amazing. In the whole house, only the little ones and I ate rice. The rest of the adults were not. Mum cooked her dishes as usual, but sometimes we would have salad with avocados or feta cheese.

Chou Yip Angku

Salad with Feta Cheese

Even when it came to mum and Little Monster and mum's joint birthday dinner, I had to choose a venue suited for carnivores. KH helped me with some research and came up with El Meson at Bangsar. Easy to order there. Meat platter and some tapas (definitely go for the gambas and champiñones) for the adults, while the kids were very content with the paella pan pizzas. And their red sangria was pretty. I felt light-headed after just one cup! The birthday cake was a chocolate lava cake that Little Monster happily ravaged.

Escargot

Gambas

Chocolate Lava Cake

Sunday, July 09, 2017

Mall Celebrities: HBCT Harry



Location: Hokkaido Baked Cheese Tart, Avenue K.

HBCT Harry ain't exactly an exceptional looker, but I was attracted by his lean, sleek and tall silhouette. He really rocks that pullover over shirt look. No frumpiness at all. Talking of HBCT, I'm not crazy about it at all. Tried the warm version and I was quite overwhelmed by the pungent taste. Pop it in the fridge and its much more agreeable with me.

Thursday, July 06, 2017

Bye Bless

Pasta

Made a dinner appointment with Lifebook and Bless on a Thurday night at KL Gateway Mall, one of KL's latest addition to the glut of retail space. In case you hadn't notice, it's located opposite the Universiti LRT station. There's even a pedestrian bridge directly linking the station with the mall. Anyway, it wasn't any 'ol dinner, it was a farewell for Bless who was leaving to work in Johor. Another minus one. None of the food choices were very compelling, so we just ate at Tovista. The name actually stands for Touch, Vision, and Taste, which doesn't really represent the brand very well. LOL. Just ordered a couple of mains and coffee. Stayed away from the cakes after seeing Lifebook shake his head vigorously (he and bless had arrived earlier).

Lamb Chop

Took a look around the mall and I just didn't get a good vibe from it. The layout just didn't appeal to me. Wonder if business will pick up over there. Felt kinda dead to me. Perhaps the only reason I would return is to try Fenix Inn, a Chinese restaurant from Bukit Tinggi. Hope it survives until my future visit. :P. That aside, all the best to Bless!

Monday, July 03, 2017

Early Jeremy

Clam Soup

Simonlover organized an early birthday dinner for JJ. We met at Kimiya, Avantas for a nice Japanese dinner. Our conversation was centered on Simonlover's recent adventure in Okinawa. Interesting that he described it as a very un-Japanese place in Japan. Guess that's to be expected from the long years of US military presence there. And he complained about the weather having brought all sorts of super short shorts and tank tops, only to have it cold and windy. LOL. Simonlover was also nice enough to bring us famous Okinawan snacks made from purple sweet potatoes.

Salted Egg Pancake

Right after dinner, we went next door to Inside Scoop for some ice cream. I opted for the salted egg waffles. I was kinda disappointed because its just normal buttermilk waffles with a drizzle of salted egg sauce. They do give some extra sauce in a small syringe, but that doesn't make much of a difference. In the end, we called it a night after a group photo, which was taken by a very helpful sister from the table beside us.

Cones

Saturday, July 01, 2017

Serpentine Under the Hood

Battery Indicator

While driving to work one morning, I noticed a loud clunk when turning a bend. I looked up to the rear-view mirror but couldn't see anything on the road that might have caused the noise. The car just ran normally. Thought nothing of it since my Iswara Skyline was already 16 years old!

When I was driving home however, I finally noticed something weird-- the battery indicator light was on. Hmmm.... I reached home with no untoward incident, but I did check with my mechanic to make sure if its something I should worry about. He told me that it was probably a serpentine belt problem, so I went to take a look under the hood. Did look like something was missing, so I took a picture for my mechanic. He confirmed that I was missing the serpentine belt. Mystery solved. So the clunk was the sound of my serpentine belt falling off.

Serpentine Belt Missing

The serpentine belt's purpose is to drive the alternator and water pump. Without the belt, my battery wasn't charging, hence the battery indicator light. And since the water pump wasn't running, my car could overheat. Both situations were disastrous, so I quickly sent it in for a replacement the next morning. Lucky for me, it didn't cost a bomb.