Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Windfall?

There's something about the Asian culture that I simply cannot accept/understand. When someone has a windfall, new job or bonus, the first thing anyone says is "So when are you going to belanja (buy a meal) me?". Nothing of a "Congratulations! I'm so happy for you!".

In fact, a couple of years ago, I struck RM2000 from a radio contest. It was indeed a blessing to me as I badly needed to fix my car which cost me exactly RM2000. But of course, being on the radio, many people recognised my voice and as soon as they met up with me, demanded I shout them a dinner. I didn't cave in. Not only because I'm naturally kiam siap (tight fisted), but the horror of the lack of manners displayed.

In the end, I decided I would shout dinner for a couple of close friends, just a small group. I didn't tell them as we ate at a steamboat buffet until the bill came. As I explained to them I wanted to do this because of my win, to my utter disgust, their first reaction was to scoff, "WHAT? And you're only paying for this dinner? We should have gone somewhere MORE expensive!".

Perhaps they meant it jokingly but I don't see any funny angle to it. Is this an Asian thing because I see it happening very very often here. I've learnt my lesson and am very selective of whom I spend on. Or maybe this is a norm which I'm protesting against in vain.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Masks

Some ramblings from after watching V for Vendetta, about the masks and appearance.

I have a firm belief that no one is absolutely ugly. Sometimes, a pretty girl may have her looks marred by her malicious character. Or the most dashing man will look simply disgusting by always blowing his own trumpet.

On the other hand, an unattractive person at first glance can turn out to be simply gorgeous with a kind and sincere heart. Ask me to describe someone by their looks and I'd rather describe them by who they are.

Always, always look for the man behind the mask.

Stupid Fish

I've been playing the game Grace introduced, Fish Tycoon. Been breeding those dang things to make enough money to buy an air pump and a heater system supposedly to help your fish survive.

Three times all my fish had died although I had set the timing as Pause so that everything remains as it is by the time I get home from work. But sometimes it doesn't pause. And because it works according to the time on your computer, the fish will age, get hungry and die if you don't tend to them. So I come home to two tankfuls of dead fish. All my sitting in front of the computer over the weekend all gone.

Stupid game.

V

Verily I say, vanquish that vermin out of my vision!

Watched V for Vendetta and came home to a gigantic cockroach just outside the spare room door.

Man, I've never noticed how articulate Hugo Weaving is but he was really excellent in this role. His face was never shown (thank goodness, because I've never thought of him other than his role in Priscilla, Queen of the Desert with his famous quote of "A cock on a rock in a frock", even after he did Matrix). In this movie, he wore a Guy Fawkes mask throughout and makes you notice other things like his speech and non-verbal communication instead of his face. Great physique too. I also noticed the physique of the Phantom in the Phantom of the Opera, the tv series. I guess the masks leaves me to appreciate other areas of attractiveness.

But, I am rambling. It's a good movie and I enjoyed it because I didn't have any expectations since I didn't know what the movie was all about. The fighting styles and storyline reminded me a lot of Equilibrium, another good movie to watch. Most of all, I loved the script with it's eloquent vocabulary, especially of his first conversation with Natalie Portman, packed with words beginning with "V".

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Playing House

When I was a kid, I remember playing masak-masak and pretending to keep house. It was one of my favourite past times and would often play with Ron, Jan or Karen whenever I could.

Now that I have my own home, I discover I'm absolutely rotten at it. How simple playing house was back then! There weren't cobwebs to clean, house rugs to scrub, a clogged drainpipe, real food to cook, floors to keep clean... For many girls, keeping the house clean comes naturally. They hate the dust, the mess and usually it is the husbands who mess up the place.

I think I've mentioned enough times how KS and I have female and male brains (tested using this month's Reader's Digest quiz), respectively. So you can imagine who is the one keeping the house clean. Guess who's feeling guilty.

There is a reason for me not doing housework, a pathetic reason. My fingers get these tiny bumps that hurt like hell after using a broom, mopping the floor, scrubbing clothes and ironing too many clothes. And the next day, I am unable to hold anything without the pain. Yup, doesn't this sound like I'm trying to give excuses to escape housework? Even as I type it out, it sound pathetic. So bo iong.

I'm off to sweep the floor. In my room. Maybe the tv room too.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Geeky Specs

I'm now a proud owner of a pair of geeky spectacles. It was supposed to be red/maroon plastic frame but it turned out to be black. So totally old fashioned! Gaah... I daren't wear it to work yet.

So now I've gotten my first item I'm targeting for the year. The other two are perfume and a new handphone, which I have yet to decide the brands and type.

Speaking of handphone, KS got a cool new Samsung D600, courtesy of Australia's free mobiles promo when you sign up with a service provider. So far, we still haven't figured out the entire function of the phone but the initial frustration makes me appreciate my good ol' 3210 Nokia.

Hot Green Tea

It's been a while since I've had such a happy Friday. As in, how happy I am that it's the end of the week. The weekend is looming ahead, the worries of last week is far behind and Monday is still 2 days away! La la lala....

On Wednesday, as mentioned, I bought my pot and mug to make green tea, right? Right after consuming the whole pot (which came up to 2 mugfuls) of the steaming brew, it started to get uncomfortably hot in my office. Of all times, the air cond had broken down! How ironic.

Nevertheless, as soon as the air cond was fixed this morning, I immediately made a bee line towards the the pantry to make a fresh new pot. One thing I realise though, is that I get a headache if I drink it in the morning. I wonder why.

Expansion Pack

So last weekend I was back in Melaka as my sis-in-law is back from Perth. One of the highlights of the trip was a serious discussion that took place between KS and his dad:

"Son, we've got to talk about your finances for your family expansion..."


Ho-boy. My Mum had also given me the "You should have kids before you're 30" as soon as we celebrated our 1st Anniversary. Everyone lah, has been asking the "When?!" question. What's more, my good friend who got married 5 months after I did is already preggers.

The truth is, I'm petrified. Initially, it was the thought of the whole pregnancy, the vomiting, the constipation, the strange cravings (like I heard of someone wanted to eat those cheap rubber Japanese slippers - she boiled it in water but I'm not sure if she really chewed on it), the weight gained (although at the rate I'm putting on, I might as well be!).

Then there was the horror of birth, the mother of all pains which will be so painful that even when the doctor slices you up to ease the birth instead of letting your tissues tear on its own, you won't know it. And this will last, oh, just about 12 hours give or take another 12.

To put that all aside since every mother needs to go through this (dang you, Eve! Why did you have to listen to that serpent?!), now the thought of bringing up a child is the most frightening. I see so many examples of parents today and it's easy for me to point out what upbringing should be ideal. Yeah, wait til I have my own kids.

Anyways, if you want to know, we're not even thinking about our "expansion". We've got Cambodia to look forward to in August.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Review – Eric’s Hot Restaurant

Yesterday we were a little bit more adventurous, we had dinner at this new place called Eric’s Hot. Named and owned after a famous Hong Kong actor, Eric Tsang, it is located at Plaza Damas, Sri Hartamas.

I had been tempted to try their Sze Chuan noodles when I first saw it about 3 weeks back so when we were there, I ordered that together with some jasmine green tea.

To digress, I’ve been having green tea cravings since the weekend, I don’t know why. Just 10 mins ago, I bought a pot, mug and a box of green tea for me to nurse the rest of the day at work.

Anyways, back to my story at Eric’s Hot, the aroma of my tea certainly smelled like jasmine and green tea but upon my first sip, I gagged and nearly spat it out! they served us SUGARED jasmine green tea! It was horrible! Tasted like some medicine! Yuks!

Hence, based mainly on that, I will NOT recommend people to go there to eat. Also, my Sze Chuan noodles came with a grossly thick layer of red chilli oil. KS had to finish it for me and today suffers from a stomachache. We also ordered a claypot chicken dish which cost us RM20 when it could easily cost a quarter of it outside.

Perhaps I’m not being fair for they may specialise in other things (steamboat was a popular choice amongst the diners) but given the chance, I will not go back there unless I’m not paying for it.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Rebounding

We just dragged home a mini trampoline from Melaka, courtesy of my in-laws who have kept it in the storeroom as a means for more dust to settle on.

Anyways, it’s cool and it’s barely used. I jumped on it on the first day and experienced a headache after less than 10 jumps. Perhaps I should be less enthusiastic and start with smaller jumps.

It’s great because we never really have the time for a proper means of exercise (I’ve decided that a gym costs way too much) and by the time we reach home, it’s too dark and dangerous to go for a walk.

The trampoline provides a quick perk-me-up before I go to work or just when I get home. I'm sure to exercise more now! (yeah right). KS has yet to have a go at it because we not sure what weight it can handle. There’s only one way to find out, right??

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Waiter, there's a fly...

Saturday night, I forced everyone to go eat Bambi rice (venision meat) and went to this particular shop we frequent for this dish. I was starving and, as Karen would say, hangry (hungry and angry). When the food came, I had sufficiently cast a dark cloud around the table with my charming mood.

I exaggerate. Anyways, digging into the food, I discover a cooked fly nestled within the slices of my venision. This is not the first time for this dish, this restaurant and for me. The guy whom I summoned had the nerve to ask me if it just flew in. They prepared another one for me and later charged me without so much of a "sorry". I swear I won't eat there again.

But I must say it's been a while since I've had foreign materials in my food. Not that I'm wishing but it's become a normal routine for me not to scrutinize my food before partaking every mouthful. Ah, blessed are the oblivious (although I wouldn't want to know what a fly tastes like - remembering the time when I "extracted" the juices from a black beetle from my lam mee once).

Nerds Part 2

Thank you for introducing this wonderful game into my life. As it has become a craze among my guy colleagues, after this type of highscore, we all now suffer from inferiority complex.

Warmest Regards

---
KS
Account Manager

Business Development


From: weeluang [mailto:weeluang@xxx.com]
Sent: Wednesday, March 15, 2006 8:52 AM
To: 'Wei Ren'; 'KS'; 'Andrew'; 'Ker Loon'; 'Steven’
Subject: Bloody Day scoring

Check out my highest score and I think you will give up playing.

To have that score, you’ll have to make sure u dun miss a single shot.

Haha… LCLY ??

Regards,

Wee Luang


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Grace, do you have any other game to introduce to these people?

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

They Are Coming...

Since we shifted to Klang, we have been blessed by the absence of cockroaches. Only a couple of times were there large flying ones outside the house but last week, KS spotted one in the tv room! Guess where we didn't watch our CSIs for the next couple of days!

There have already been two little ones running around the bedroom area and when there is one, there are more than 20 more hiding somewhere. Oh gawd. They're growing somewhere and one day, they will appear and take it upon themselves to terrorise us.

Now I understand the despair and fear when Gandalf said "They are coming..." when they were in the Mines of Moria, as the faraway drums signified the approaching attack of the Orcs.

Sparks? Not.

I was recommended by Jan's friend to read The Notebook by Nicholas Spark. Amazon readers have it ranked at 4 stars with most of the reviews are mainly 5 stars.

Unfortunately, I fall within the minority of the readers as I found the book dull. Guess I'm not really into romance of this type. A Walk in the Clouds didn't really hit a chord so I guess this isn't my cup of tea.

Ah well, looks like it's back to my next Perry Mason.

Nerds

A couple of weeks/month ago, my sister posted this game on her blog and out of curiousity, I clicked onto it and found the game to be fun and violent.

I forwarded the link to KS at his office and before I know it, he had passed it on to most of his colleagues.

Now they are battling against who gets the highest points for this and have found the "best" way to gain points (but of course) by making every bullet make a consecutive hit. The highest so far is like 35000 points by KS's IT guy. Gila.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Neighbourhood Puppy

About three weeks ago, KS and I went for a short walk to buy our Saturday papers and on our way back, we caught sight of this cute little stray.

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I immediately responded by callling out to him and he started getting excited and wagged his tail furiously. KS stopped me as we can't afford to keep a dog with our long absences from the house. So I retraced my steps away from him and as he looked on, realised we were not going to play with him. Oh, his tail slowed down to a stop and his face had an expression of complete sorrow. Broke our hearts, he did.

A few days later, we went to look for him and found him just as excited as ever.

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We haven't seen him of late but hope someone has decided to adopt him.

One More Photo

On our Genting trip, we also saw these signages all over the place, in the bus, in the cable car etc. Take a look:
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Ok, the signs mean No Eating, No Smoking, No Drinking and No Throwing Rubbish. Now look closely at the middle one:
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What on earth does this mean? We were thinking all sorts, No Exposing Your Shoes to the Rain, No Wearing Pants that Doesn't Reach to Your Ankles and make you look like an Ah Pek, No Stretching Your Leg.

But I think it just struck me, perhaps it means, No Kicking the Glass Window.

Connection

Ladies and gentlemen,

After more than one year of no internet connection at home, I'm proud to say that I finally have connection. And not just dial up! We've spent the good part of the day so far downloading movie teasers and trailers. Ah, the difference between this and dial up!

Anyways, hopefully there will be more time for me to blog before I sleep for the next week.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Genting Photos

I MUST share with you some photos we took up in Gentings:
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Here are some spectacular lights inside the er...Mall. I don't remember what mall it's called.

Then we noticed this little ensemble located at one corner of the mall:
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And we thought, "Oh how cute, a bunch of bears and all things cute & cuddly playing in a band". Until we took a closer look at the main star:


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Holy Molies! It scared the heck out of us to see her half-closed eyelid, cobweb in her mouth and .. and... just looking at her gives me the heebie-jeebies! It's enough to scare any kid at any time of day!

City of Entertainment

All in all, Genting is not too bad a place to go if you want to experience cool weather and wear your winter clothes in Malaysia. There are quite a few things to see up there even if you avoid the casinos. We’ve done that twice already.

The first thing that makes you less bored of the place is their confusing signage. We bought this package for two tickets to watch a magic show called Mysteria, a night’s stay at First World Hotel (the most basic accommodations at Gentings), two meal coupons and a two-way cable car ride for two pax.

Mysteria starts at 9pm and by the time we got there right after work, it was 8:15pm. Of course we were rushing to find the hotel to check in and eat before the show. We quickly grabbed some McD’s and headed towards the First World Hotel with the directions given on various boards above.

This always makes things exciting up in Gentings as we never know where we’re going and the place is darn confusing, you’d never really realise the entire layout of the whole place with it’s many hotels, theme parks and what not. Turn a few corners, some escalators up and down and whaddya know! You’re facing McD’s again!

In the end, we asked the people working there on how to get to our hotel. The girl pointed an entirely different direction from what those darn boards said. And she was right.

The hotel is another funny one. We had to queue to get a number in order to queue to be checked in. Now, this was nearly 15 mins before the show started so there was a stroke of panic as we finally checked in and dumped out bags, almost rushing to the show.

And the show is… well, I suppose I had David Copperfield in mind but heck, I nearly fell asleep in that 1.5 hours, it was that bad.

Hotel stay, I will just say we will never stay at First World Hotel again because the walls are so thin, we could hear people turning on taps across the corridors or some late people who bang past the corridor to catch their 6:30am ride. Oh, and we couldn’t open the windows because we think our window is just above a smoking section/room.
The saving grace was we had a great buffet lunch and the wonderful cool weather. I loved the cold there as it’s been sweltering. Hmm… must do my rain dance soon.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Uninspired Random Grouses

I know I haven’t been updating my blog for what seems ages but it’s been a totally uninspiring time. There have been a few stolen attempts at starting an entry but it is left uncompleted even before it reaches the second paragraph, and then it is scrapped.

Firstly, the petrol prices have gone up again by almost 20% and for us who travel 60km one way everyday to work, this figure isn’t something we can easily swallow. Of course this has also led to hawkers increasing their prices and we’ll soon see a spiraling inflation. Quite a few of my friends have had a measly increment of less than 3%. So in effect, we are actually now earning less than last year.

Then, it’s just been a trying time at work with bosses putting on the stress and frantically trying to grasp the basics (or so I perceive) of the operations of the industry. I think it’s a phase though because almost everyone I meet these days seem to tell me that they are looking for a new job or that they are most unhappy of where they are right now. The Rat Depression seems to be cast upon our community. We are all getting tired of running in the rat race.

Thirdly, I have been unsuccessfully trying to overcome my increasing dislike for Leech and it’s not easy avoiding someone who’s circumstances have put this person so closely within our orbit.

Today there’s news about a lorry carrying fresh squid which overturned due to an accident along the highway. Other drivers took the opportunity to loot the squid by stopping their cars along the highway and rushing to grab as much as they can. This caused a jam of 5km long. Did they realize that the driver died in that accident? Would they have cared?

Last Sunday, there was a surprising flash flood in Shah Alam. We happened to drive past the area and was really shocked to see the traces of how high the waters had reached even to the highway. Again, I have this morbid fascination with water and it was really quite a sight to behold. The victims of the flood had a really tough time after that as the flood had damaged all their vehicles and homes. They didn’t have time to react as the waters started rising at 3am.

The bright spot about the whole fortnight is that the new computer is simply great. I love my flat panel and it’s much larger than what I’m normally used to. Of course, there was heavy usage of it for the Sims 2 (but I’m winding down pretty quickly on that already) and now am glad I can blog just before I sleep.

Good night. Tomorrow I go up to Genting with KS to celebrate our belated 1st anniversary.

Proof Reading

When I was a kid, I told my mum I wanted to be “someone who picks out printed mistakes” and proceeded to show her the missing punctuations in an Enid Blyton book I was reading. I then asked her if there was such a job in the world and she said “No”.

Thereafter, I forced myself to ignore the missing alphabets or strange spacings with each book I read, never realizing how this skill would have helped me later on in life, which is now.

And now, oh how I dislike proofreading all my marketing materials and often skip it, causing some expensive re-prints (I had to reprint 600 pieces of a brochure once because I missed out the word “see picture bellow” and received a reprimand from the company director).
I’m going through some legal terms and conditions at the moment and my eyes have crossed in protest.