Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Sticky

I recently bought more than $25 worth of sweets.

Here's what they look like:

Care for your lollies. Avoid
exposure to excessive heat
or moisture. Treat as fragile.

~ Sticky


Ok, I didn't take those pics. This is actually from their website www.sticky.com.sg

They are crazy addictive.

I bought a jar of Rock Mix, and packets of watermelon, Happy New Year 2009, Acid Drops and I Love Yous hahaha....

Get them at Central. It's the mall above Clark Quay MRT.

Monday, December 29, 2008

The first 2 minutes of Underneath The Stars

I can imagine listening to this in an imaginary basement venue.
It's the air. It hangs heavy with the humidity. The smell of stale beer mixed with cigarettes.
The ceiling is low and you can trace the patterns on the mineral boards. Darker spots where it was waterlogged.

The headlining band had just finished and people were milling in and out of the tiny space. A crowd gathered at the bar, quenching their thirst with an assortment of alcoholic beverages.

The next band had strange make up. Seems like the lead vocalist had eyeliner and bad hair. They start playing.

As the strums of guitar rings through the cracked up speakers, you thought to yourself that they sounded promising. You were glad that you stayed.

Then the drumming starts and another guitar joins in. You nodded your head to the beat.


Friday, December 26, 2008

Allergies

This year I went to three cities starting with "P".
Each had a character uniquely its own.

Phuket - had the Vegetarian Festival.
Paris - there was the Eiffel Tower amongst others like Jeff Koons and it being a working trip, hence free.

Just returned from Penang. Famous for the hawker fare and also being awarded as a UNESCO World Heritage site recently. More of that later.

Oh, and not forgetting the "P" Party this weekend at bryan+jados.

That's not the point of this entry.

I just want to share that I never had a allergy until I was 21 when I experienced walking past a field with flowers blooming in Spring. The breeze whipped up some pollen. Ok, "some" is an understatement. Ever since, I am very mildly allergic to dust and pollen. I sneeze. And my nose will itch. Like probably 2,312,230,234 others in the world will react the same way.

Now I have developed an allergy to oysters. My left eyelid will become swollen.

I confirmed this allergy in Penang. Because of the oyster omelette.

My left eyelid is still puffy and painful to touch.

Pictures to follow....I meant pictures of Penang. Not my eyelid.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Horroscope - Dirty Dozen

Being blunt can be liberating -- saying what you mean frees you from worrying about how people will react to it. It can be exhausting to try to craft your communication into something that you think someone wants to hear or something that you think will get you the answer you want. Give yourself a break and just speak the truth. Let the other person react however they react. And don't be wishy-washy about it, either. Decide what you are going to say, then just say it.

Oh yes sir. Sometimes, being blunt saves some heartaches.

Although it inevitably brings some.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

The cruelty of an elephant's memory

From Rachael Yamagata's new album (she did keep her promise made at her concert in Singapore last year):

And how dare that you send me that card 
When I am doing
All that I can do
You are forcing me to remember
When all I want is
To just forget you

Great stuff packed in this double disc.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

My private moment

While waiting for auntie to finish work, I decided to treat myself to watching porn prawn.

So first was normal softcore prawn:
Then there was hardcore and raw prawn:


Seeing that there were 5 of them, I decide to watch some prawn featuring orgy:

The orgy was a little to rich for me. So I decided to watch some animated prawn. Off to some hentai prawn:

I wanna try prawning.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Ha!

I like the idea used in the recent Basic Instructions about movies you should love is really funny. It associated how Belle in Beauty & The Beast fell in love with the beast after being trapped with him for a while with Stockholm Syndrome.

Well, I suppose the step-mothers of Cinderella and Snow White were preventing Electra Complex then.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Lucky number 8

BLOC PARTY. - Intimacy
Rachel Yamagata - Elephants (Disc 1) and Teeth Sinking Into Heart (Disc 2)
The Cure - 4:13 Dream (Yippee! New album from the evergreens)
Snow Patrol - A Hundred Million Suns
Keane - Perfect Symmetry
Goldfrapp - Seventh Tree
Coldplay - Viva La Vida (with Prospect's March EP, bought it cause of Brian Eno, right, and that auntie likes the lead off eponymous single)
The Killers - Day & Night

more of these later.....need to rip them for

ZoukOut 2008 Pre-party Party + Post-party Slumber Party

Friday, December 12, 2008

weakends are back

last weekend was a long one. but never got to enjoy. was duty on haji. and the day before, had to get up at 3:50am, bought the kawasaki print online, prepared to head to esplanade for the flag off. finished the marathon and went home, showered, was outta the house by 1pm to nich's place for baby David's full moon party. then went home, slept, got up, went to SK+JJ wedding.

this weekend, zoukout.

sighs.....

Monday, December 08, 2008

Contemporary is Evergreen?

I read in the AssTee yesterday about a certain home owner's comments on her choice of decor for her apartment.

My choice of decor theme is
Contemporary. Modern designs are evergreen.
My first reaction was, "How can modern designs be evergreen?" If a design was modern, shouldn't it be forward looking or at least, not previously available? It's like saying "the future is constant". Furthermore, "contemporary" generally means "occurring at the same time".

However the lady could be correct.

In art, Contemporary is considered any art piece created now or recently as well as anything produced after world war 2. And surprise surprise, Modern art is a particular movement from lat 19th century to sometime around 1970s although there are still pieces of art created now in a Modern style.

She is of the opinion that a decor theme of "contemporary and modern" is "evergreen". That is subjective. But she is not saying anything to the effect that the future will be unchanged. That would be too presumptuous.

This has been another piece of useless information from me.

War & Peace

This is not an entry about Tolstoy's epic novel set during the Napoleonic War.

Recently US DOD approved and released their new Irregular Warfare (IW) Directive (pdf here).
IW will be seen as strategically important as conventional war. Conventional war is rare these days. Most conflicts exists between what is termed "irregular" and conventional.

Defence is no longer in the straightforward business of "war".

It used to be Peace - War. Two dichotomies in military studies. You are either at war. Or you are not.

Armed forces these days are operationally equipped and expected to provide a wide spectrum of capabilities.

Enter the Peace - War continuum: Peace - Troubled Peace - War. Where "troubled peace" represents what we have post 9-11. Nobody is betting on a resumption to "peace" anytime soon.
The type of operations in the Peace-War continuum is interesting: Peace - Humanitarian Aid & Disaster Relief and any other Operations Other Than War (OOTW) which may include Peacekeeping Support Operations (PSO), any operations undertaken by the military that does except War is under this catchall term. And War remains the bread and butter of any armed force in the world.

Within War itself, there is also consideration for pre-War prep, War itself and the post-War stabilisation phase. What a mess.

Odysseus: [to Achilles] War is young men dying and old men talking. - Troy [movie, 2004]

two sisters

two sisters. got it. merry x'mas. again!

Friday, December 05, 2008

Is criminal profiling discriminatory?

Remember in some of those crime thriller movies, the chief detective will be instructing the team that they are looking for a "single white male, lives in the outskirts of this city, probably a loner and unlikely to subscribe to any religion"?

That's sorta like offender or criminal profiling.

It's not so much like generalising and stereotyping - oh, a shrewd businessman? Must be jewish!.
It's supposedly more art than science, well, that's what malcom gladwell says. and he wrote 3 great books. blink, tipping point and outliers. non of which i read.

This post was triggered by what I had observed at the mrt station near my house. Boon Keng MRT. I have been asked to submit my bag for security checks once. And the two other times I saw the security guy checking anyone else's bags were those belonging to a primary school boy and today, a middle aged auntie.

Question. I did not include their race. I'm Chinese. Whatever that means in Singapore anyway. So were the boy and the auntie. Will it bother you if all the examples I have just given were malays? Indians? People who are wearing hijabs/tudungs? Only angmohs. Only people with hairy legs. Blondes?

This may sound a little racist. But, are the checks targeted? Or random, very much so, to be politically correct.

Let's face it. Were any of the JIs elements caught in Singapore post 9-11 angmohs?

Who is more likely to have terror intent in your neighbourhood? Is your answer going to be politcally correct ie. "We cannot be complacent. While we wish to trust all your neighbours, we are unable to know them thoroughly. They may have undergone self-radicalisation by visiting websites with radical views that distort the original religious teachings. So we must assume anyone can possibly harbour terror intent in my neighbourhood."

BS.

Or are you going to be suspicious of the newly moved in neighbours who look like they are from the middle east, keep to themselves mostly and don't speak English?

But what does criminal profiling tells us? (refer to malcom gladwell's comments on profiling - make lots of predictions, not a triumph of forensic analysis - a party trick) So who should the security guy at the station check?


Thursday, December 04, 2008

Mosaic Music Festival Presents Kraftwerk

I cannot remember how many Mosaic Music Festival concerts I have gone to. 5, according to this blog. But I didn't blog about The Bird And The Bee. Not much coverage on Sondre Lerche as well. So there were actually more.

But last night was like watching Peter Hook spin in Zouk.

ray summarised it as, "paying homage to the grandfathers".

It wasn't completely full. I think it was opened up to Circle 3. We were stuck to the back row of Circle 2. There were the usual "too cool for school" people who were dressed like like they were going ReadySetGlo!!!, lots of angmos, homos, hobos and lobos. ok.

And if anyone from the Esplanade staff is reading this, please tell us what is wrong with taking pictures in a Mosaic show? It's not like anybody will mind. Unless the artists specifically stated "No recording of any kind", otherwise, relax and let the people take the pictures. The usher assigned to Circle 2 rows JJ area, she's a real workaholic. But took away some of the enjoyment. I understand she is doing her job. So the change should come from the management.

The Set List - could be wrong....I tried to remember bits of the track to fill in those I didn't know previously.


Kling Klang - I think this was played before the lights came on and some vocoded voice was talking. Kling Klang Records, the label which Kraftwerk release their albums through. Not to be mistaken with Chemical Brothers' If You Kling To Me, I'll Klong To You.
Man Machine Machine Machine Machine Machine Machine Machine MACHINE
Tour de France
Vitamin
Planet of Visions
Numbers - 12345678
Computer World
Home Computer
Pocket Calculator (the animation was from the website and this track together with the previous 3 tracks formed a mini set of their own)














Autobahn - oh classick from their 1974 eponymous album and the visuals started with the totally retro looking album cover. You'd never guess that with a cover like that, it'll actually develop a cult following.















Computer Love
The Model - oh my gawd.....the visuals.....I was telling auntie this sounded very 七月歌台.
Neon Licht
Showroom Dummies
Radioactivity - I had guessed that the bleeps were Morse code but it was always too fast for me. I used to go up to 4 wpm.
Trans Europe Express
The Robots - was sharing with the rest that any one of the robots they used for this track while "we're charging our batteries" made more movements than the four of them combined throughout their show.
Elektro Kardiogramm - spectacular!
Aero Dynamik - finally! a dancefloor friendly/ready number
Boing! Boom! Tschak!
Music Non Stop - fantastic closing number!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Zoe couldn't hang on

Was at HortPark for a baby's 1st birthday. How wonderful! A garden setting for a baby's birthday. I don't think any of us can remember our first birthday. Photographs, or videos for the luckier ones, of the event are what we have to let us have a glimpse of what happened. .

As we grow older in life, we plan and plan the actions we take. Hoping to shape our lives by the decisions we make.

The paths we have taken led us down different outcomes. Although the path untaken does keep coming to mind but we continue in the hopes for a brighter future. Living a life predetermined is just unimaginable. Surely some of our choices make a difference.

But some don't.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

A model for democracy

If I have to shoot 200,000 students to save China from another 100 years of disorder, so be it.
- Lee Kuan Yew evoking the ghost of Deng Xiaoping whilst endorsing the Tiananmen Square massacre, Straits Times, Aug 17, 2004

*warning! rambling post ahead*

A year after I returned with a degree and started serving my bond, I had a worry. It was that I might get jaded. The fear of having the grind of daily life seep ennui throughout my system.


I chanced upon this website while searching for quotes on democracy.

Amazingly, I agree with each and every quote found below at different junctures of my life. Many are contradictory hence I must emphasise "different junctures".

Did education and (mis)directed observations of our cultural, political and economic landscapes led to this conclusion?

Recently I was sharing with my big big boss that I was interested in the study of economics because of the central idea of "unlimited wants from limited resources". He pursued economics in his university days as well and was interested in the application of economic theories. Especially in the incentivising and disincentivising of humans to shape behaviours.

There was a recent article in AssTee about a Sri Lankan lawyer whose father was a former Sri Lanka High Commissioner to Singapore. The lawyer is presently a Singapore citizen.

Rather than lamenting the lack of liberal democracy, she suggests, 'our youth should be channelled to focus on the competitive advantages that they are going to enjoy in what has been called the 'New Asian Hemisphere',' by Professor Kishore Mahbubani, dean of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy. That 'hemisphere' includes China, India, Singapore and the Middle East.

She believes our youth will 'out-perform' Western counterparts.

She is delighted that today, the friends of her offspring agree with her that 'Singapore's strength has been its style of leadership'.

Her house of debate may have opened a couple of doors in young minds.

No, this is not about the free-rider problem. Yes, defence is both a public good (non-excludable and non-rival) as well as a merit good (positive externalities, though questionable) and foreign talents, new immigrants and expatriates do free-ride depending on how you define payment. Instead, it's about the problem of choice.

“But we either believe in democracy or we not. If we do, then, we must say categorically, without qualification, that no restraint from the any democratic processes, other than by the ordinary law of the land, should be allowed… If you believe in democracy, you must believe in it unconditionally. If you believe that men should be free, then, they should have the right of free association, of free speech, of free publication. Then, no law should permit those democratic processes to be set at nought.”
- Lee Kuan Yew as an opposition leader, April 27, 1955


“Repression, Sir is a habit that grows. I am told it is like making love - it is always easier the second time! The first time there may be pangs of conscience, a sense of guilt. But once embarked on this course with constant repetition you get more and more brazen in the attack. All you have to do is to dissolve organizations and societies and banish and detain the key political workers in these societies. Then miraculously everything is tranquil on the surface. Then an intimidated press and the government-controlled radio together can regularly sing your praises, and slowly and steadily the people are made to forget the evil things that have already been done, or if these things are referred to again they’re conveniently distorted and distorted with impunity, because there will be no opposition to contradict.
-Lee Kuan Yew as an opposition PAP member speaking to David Marshall, Singapore Legislative Assembly, Debates, 4 October, 1956

These powers will not be allowed to be used against political opponents within the system who compete for the right to work the system. That is fundamental and basic or the powers will have destroyed the purpose for which they were forged.
- Lee Kuan Yew speaking in Parliament on the Preservation of Public Security Act, a precursor to the ISA, Oct 14, 1959

“It is essential to rear a generation at the very top of society that has all the qualities needed to lead and give the people the inspiration and the drive to make it succeed. In short; the elite. Every society tries to produce this type. The British have special schools for them: the gifted and talented are sent to Eton and Harrow.”
- Lee Kuan Yew, August 1966

The human being is an unequal creature. That is a fact. And we start off with the proposition. All the great religions, all the great movements, all the great political ideology, say let us make the human being as equal as possible. In fact, he is not equal, never will be.
- Lee Kuan Yew, from a speech during the 1960s, Success Stories

One-man-one-vote is a most difficult form of government. Results can be erratic.”
- Lee Kuan Yew, Dec 19 1984

We have to lock up people, without trial, whether they are communists, whether they are language chauvinists, whether they are religious extremists. If you don’t do that, the country would be in ruins.”
- Lee Kuan Yew, 1986

“They say people can think for themselves? Do you honestly believe that the chap who can’t pass primary six knows the consequence of his choice when he answers a question viscerally, on language, culture and religion? But we knew the consequences. We would starve, we would have race riots. We would disintegrate.”
- Lee Kuan Yew, The Man & His Ideas, 1997

“I started off believing all men were equal. I now know that’s the most unlikely thing ever to have been, because millions of years have passed over evolution, people have scattered across the face of this earth, been isolated from each other, developed independently, had different intermixtures between races, peoples, climates, soils… I didn’t start off with that knowledge. But by observation, reading, watching, arguing, asking, that is the conclusion I’ve come to.
- Lee Kuan Yew, The Man & His Ideas, 1997

“If I tell Singaporeans - we are all equal regardless of race, language, religion, culture. Then they will say, "Look, I’m doing poorly. You are responsible." But I can show that from British times, certain groups have always done poorly, in mathematics and in science. But I’m not God, I can’t change you. But I can encourage you, give you extra help to make you do, say maybe, 20% better.”
- Lee Kuan Yew, Success Stories, 2002


Thursday, November 27, 2008

That's not what you really meant

When you are not a supporter of Obama, you are not automatically a racist. Not to me.
Bradley effect aside, being a non-supporter of Obama doesn't mean that you are not in favour of change. Just not the change they need.

If you are Christian, Catholic, Buddhist, Taoist, Muslim....and a very staunch one for that matter, I don't think you are conservative. Neither do I think you are holier than thou. And I judge you by your actions, not by your faith. Or the lack of it.

You are not liberal if you are gay and think people who don't accept your lifestyle are discriminatory. You are just gay. Even though the people who don't accept your lifestyle are discriminatory. Having "fuck buddies" doesn't make you more cosmopolitan. It may mean that you are more at risk of contracting STIs. Not accepting others who go for easy sex doesn't make you a prude. You are not any less liberal to me too.

Friday, November 21, 2008

What I learn in this crisis

Short-term goals in long-term strategies

Although you think of yourself as an investor who is in it for the long-haul, that doesn't mean fundamentals go out of the window. Yes, time horizon is very important in investing. You can dollar-cost average your way out of the cycles but equally important and blindingly obvious is the simple logic of "buy low, sell high". Although your long time horizon can beat the odds in the long run of economic ups and downs, you can make your money work even harder by adjusting when to pull back and when to throw (some) caution to the wind (light breeze). Now may not be the time to just plonk your $$ onto the table but money parked at the side remains static. Although that investment-linked policy you bought at the bottom of the downturn back in 1998 is super positive, you can choose to protect that profit by getting yourself into a "defensive" mode. But did you?

Set a cut-loss point and stick to it
You bought into China funds and other funds from other blocs eg. BRIC, MENA and GEMS but you did not go in with an exit strategy. Witness the mess in Afghanistan and Iraq. Even the Israelis are doing it wrongly against the Hezbollahs. Know what is the point at which you decide enough is enough (10%?, 20%?) and be disciplined enough to stick to the plan.

Lock in profits
Even if you are in it for the long haul, there is nothing wrong in protecting your profits by putting them into less risky funds (cash, bonds blah). And counter-intuitively, this is when the profits are being raked. Just like there is no "best time" to get into the market (don't ever try and catch the bottom), there is no "best time" to get out. Go in progressively and pull out in a likewise manner.

Keep an "opportunity fund"
This is for times like these. There is value in alot of investment instruments. Some people increase their principal by two-, three- and even four-folds during crises.

The problem with lump-sum investments
In a flooding tide, lump-sum investments will yield fantastic profits. But when the flood is ebbing, lump-sum investments gets you ballasted. If you bought into funds from the middle or 3rd quarter of last year, you know what I mean.

Why dollar-cost and value averaging can work for you now
If you don't know how to make the best use of this crisis, go read up on dollar-cost averaging and value averaging. Then start somewhere, not just anywhere. Find value. And start now or soon. It will pay back in 5 years or so.

Time can mitigate some risks in investing
Only some risks. And don't forget, you get older as each year passes and you feel your losses more than you feel your profits.

I will elaborate. And use this entry as a reminder for myself.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

sombody is damn free....




haha.....

Monday, November 17, 2008

She Who Dares

Got my print.and judging from the comments, i am damn lucky.

couldn't access from workplace because the server blocked the site "Art/Entertainment/Nudity/Shopping" - so got auntie to buy it for me instead.

Yayness!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Happy Holidays

Why people should look forward to 2009. (It's NOT the economy, stupid.)

~ from the MOM website.

start planning...............

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Friday night

Avenue Q was rad. Fantastic entertainment. Never knew puppets/monsters f78k like humans.

Broke the St James chastity belt. Movida, Dragonfly (William Scorpion!) and Boiler Room. Blood outside the dance floor. Action packed dance floor.

New track from the Killers (sounding so much like a dance track because it's produced by Thin White Duke aka Les Rythmes Digitales aka Jacques Lu Cont who is really Stuart Price whose dancetrack Jacques Your Body was such a fun moment in dance music history), Human. Coming across like a offshoot from a collaboration between New Order and U2 (not from the Zooropa era).

And not much sleep.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Why I hope Xiaxue will be proven wrong

Ronald Reagan said that the US will never negotiate with terrorists.

Let me further make it plain to the assassins in Beirut and their accomplices, wherever they may be, that America will never make concessions to terrorists — to do so would only invite more terrorism — nor will we ask nor pressure any other government to do so. Once we head down that path there would be no end to it, no end to the suffering of innocent people, no end to the bloody ransom all civilized nations must pay.

But witness the Iran-Contra scandal. Arms for hostages, anyone?

Gen. Petraeus and McCain seemed to be potential hunting buddies. McCain will not sit down with the leaders of Iran.

Obama will.

"Contrary to the claims of some, I have no interest in sitting down with our adversaries just for the sake of talking. But as President of the United States, I would be willing to lead tough and principled diplomacy with the appropriate Iranian leaders at a time and place of my choosing - if, and only if - it can advance the interests of the United States."

And it seems that Petraeus might. Or has already done so.

I do think you have to talk to enemies.

The General continued,

I'm not trying to get into the middle of domestic politics, but I mean what we did do in Iraq ultimately was sit down with some of those that were shooting at us. What we tried to do was identify those who might be reconcilable.
What happens in a world where there is a single calming hegemonic force is the progress we saw during the Clinton years. And that is why I hope Xiaxue is wrong. But she provided some sanity amidst this clarion call to the church of obama.

Let's see what happens in 2009.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Esplanade is a good thing


Avenue Q this Friday

and Kraftwerk next month.


NICE!

My X'mas!

from audrey kawasaki.

Lessons in life from fishing

They say don't give fish to the hungry. Instead, show them how to use a fishing rod.

I suppose if you give fish to the hungry, you are spoiling them. Because you cannot feed them forever.
Show them how to fish, you are teaching them. But you restrict their creativity.
Tell them that fish can eliminate their hunger. Then motivate and allow them to discover how to fish efficiently. You will then open up something very different from the other options altogether.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Egged

As part of my "are geese altruistic" line of questioning, I have decided to ask this question.


Are humans the only living thing that will intentionally remove their unborn child ie. abortion.

We used to think that humans are the only living thing that will have sex for pleasure. Well, apparently dolphins, swans, elephants and certain species of monkeys do it for "fun" as well. And get this, we are not the only living thing that "rapes". But what about abortion?

When a farmer goes around collecting eggs from the hen house, do the hens weep, assuming they are fertilised?
Will a mother hen intentionally roll her egg (fertilised of course!) down a plank just to abort her baby? Or in a more likely scenario (assuming she wants to abort), she will not incubate her egg?

What will Republicans say?

Friday, November 07, 2008

Best Act Ever!

Guess who won Best Act Ever at the MTV Europe Music Awards 2008?

You're Too Shy To Say It

touché

"The most expensive clothes in the world are those that are too cheap in construction—or too cheap in taste—to permit long-continued use."

- Brooks Brothers

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Lynn's (who wanna be anonymous) interpretation of Jeff Koons' Balloon Dog



Artwork by Lynn (who wanna be anonymous).
Picture of funny dog taken off from here without permission sought.

This is RANT

There is a Japanese city named Obama and is located in Wakasa area of Fukui Prefecture.

If there was a city named McCain, would it change the US Presidential Election results?

We all know that Sarah Palin was chosen as veep for McCain because she is going to be running for Prez in 8 years time. She admitted it. Not a Freudian slip. So in another 8 years, she could either fade into obscurity (Tina Fey on the other hand will still be around) or be running against (you guessed it!) Hilarious Clinton.

Why do we know that Mrs Clinton will be running in that campaign, 4 or maybe 8 years down the road? Well, because Joe Biden was chosen as the veep for Obama that's why. Joe (not the plumber) will be 74 years old when Obama steps down (assuming that he continues for 8 years). Mrs Clinton will be 69 by then. A tad old yes, but certainly not the oldest.

I like the current drama series on Channel 8, By My Side. Fantastic stuff. Renewed my faith in local drama productions. It's as good as the plastic surgery series that had Michelle Chia and Thomas Ong. Beats "Beach.Balls.Babes". I don't see any point in comparing.

I like the way Aids awareness is brought into the living room of Channel 8 viewers. Although Aids is not a homosexual illness, I thought it could enhance the series. But this being Singapore....well.



Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Jeff Koons at Chateau de Versailles

So we took a 1/2 day trip to Chateau de Versailles. Where Sofia Coppola filmed Marie Antoinette.

Weirdest thing was that Jeff Koons was being exhibited within the palace. The first piece I saw was Balloon Dog in one of the rooms. While the others were wondering what was this giant pink metallic dog doing in the middle of a stately 17th Century palace, I immediately thought, "Jeff Koons!".

Balloon Dog

Haha! I'm no art expert but there is something serendipitous about this artwork. And to think that auntie and I were just talking about his famous Balloon Dog days before leaving for Paris. We couldn't remember how it was brought into our conversation but imagine my surprise when I saw it in one of the many halls in the palace.

Balloon Dog

There were plenty more of his works in the other rooms. But none of the raunchy "Made In Heaven" series. If you're not aware of this series, just google it and erm, be mindful that Ilona Staller, a former(?) pornstar/member of parliament (she works hard for her million dollar a month pay) is also Jeff Koons' ex-wife.

Michael Jackson and Bubbles

There were some which looks wrong on many levels. Like this piece of Michael Jackson and his pet chimp Bubbles. Whatever happened to Bubbles anyway? Bubbles is like Andrew Ridgeley (aka the other half of Wham!) during MJ's Dangerous era.

Lobster

Some were even more inane. Like the one above. But strangely, when Lobster is juxtaposed next to the crystal chandelier, it takes on a whole new meaning. Oh! I love the way I used the word "juxtaposed". So artsy.

Moon

I am not a fan of Jeff Koons. Most of his works don't go down well with me. I know pr0n when I see it and pr0n is all over in the Made In Heaven series. But some of his works are really spectacular and make really fantastic public pieces.

Balloon Flower

And pieces like Pink Panther, Ushering In Banality and Bear And Policeman, well, kids love them. In fact, TPY took a picture of Bear And Policeman because he thought that his kids will like it.

Pink Panther

Ushering Into Banality

Bear and Policeman

And who knows, you might some treasure amongst this trove.

Hanging Heart

Such luck.

Monday, November 03, 2008

No time to blog

Just wanted to put up some pictures in here.

Yes, this is THE Paris Hilton. Was staying on the 4th storey and this was the view from the balcony:


As France is the sitting on the EU Presidency from Jul - Dec 2008, the Eiffel Tower was specially lit for this period of 6 months.


And every hour, on the hour, the spectacle is enhanced with thousands of glittering lights (gotta rotate the screen or head...).

video

There was also the amazing french dinners at Philippe et Jean-Pierre, Marius et Janette and Pershing Hall.

More of these later....

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Hilton Suffren

I will check out if the Hilton in Paris (Paris Hilton)

  1. is easy to get into - Yes.
  2. has a wide entrance - Yes, revolving door.
  3. allow entry from the rear door for VIPs - Possibly maybe.
  4. allow double or triple occupancy - Definitely.
  5. charge by the hour - Didn't ask but unlikely.
Be right back with more. Pictures to follow.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Post before Paris Hilton

I'll let auntie write a few lines:



ok, she refused.

Anyway, waiting for time to pass before leaving the house for terminal 3.
Gonna attend this Euronaval 2008 exhibition in Paris le Bourget. It's not actually Paris. But Paris le Bourget. What does "le bourget" mean? I don't know. What does

auntie says if she has to type, she's gonna type something like this: "He says that he is going to get some air stewardess' number and have a fling."

anyway....

I will check out if the Hilton in Paris (Paris Hilton)

  1. is easy to get into
  2. has a wide entrance
  3. allow entry from the rear door for VIPs
  4. allow double or triple occupancy
  5. charge by the hour
What else do you wanna know?

Don't think I'll put up many pictures after this trip.
Oh yes, the gifts, plaques and books weigh 8kgs. These don't belong to me. I hope I can leave them all in Paris.

But oh fuck. If these gifts go out, some are definitely gonna come back in.
It's like chinese new year but in a bad way.

Friday, October 24, 2008

catching up

it was a nice evening out with pin and yf. met at mackenzie rex.
zichar dinner with chicken rice. without the chicken. mackenzie is famous for their chicken rice. voted top 10 by tnp fastads readers. way back in 1998.

a short drive to raffles city for starbucks. did plenty of catching up.

hmm, didn't realise that i've know yf for 16 years and pin, 14 years. ys leh? how long?

there is not much time left to prepare for the trip. gah!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Express your interest

I logged onto Facebook to see this on my notification feed:

Today

Last week you were viewed for dating 2 times and no people expressed interest in you. 5:30am




I like the real world better. People lie more and sugar coat their words.
On Facebook, I'm mediocre.

Paris, Hilton

J: "I'm staying at the Hilton and I was looking at the website, it's so funny. Remember the Hollywood cliche where every Parisian window has a view of the Eiffel Tower? The pictures on the website show exactly that! There's a picture of a balcony with a view of the Eiffel Tower."

V: "You are staying in Hilton while in Paris?"

D: "Haha, that's really Paris Hilton."

Guffaws.

*not verbatim

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Bollywood

Watched Namastey London while on duty. (shhh..)

Nice stuff.

Baa!

Why do we trust? How is it that a nation can have wool pulled over their eyes again and again?

I mean, Bush said the reason for going to war in Iraq and ___________ (fill in name of oil rich country) was because of WMD. Wow. Obviously the reason why there wasn't any to be found was because we were fooled. Not by Bush Administration. But by Saddam.
Al-Qaeda is the threat and the reason why we are back in the gulf. But let's divert resources away from finding bin Laden to destroying Saddam.
By the way, 9-11? That's the first attack on American soil. Ok, let's forget about Pearl Harbour. Oh, mainland? Yeah...ok....why not first attack on American mainland, New York, New York, Lower Manhattan, modern building....*blah blah more descriptors*.
He said that FEMA was doing a heckuva job when the levees broke. Yup. And before that, he probably said the levees wouldn't break. They were "caught by surprise". Right! So was Saddam when Bush said he had WMD. A bigger surprise when Iraq was invaded.
They were gonna turn around the huge deficit.
Iraqis will see Americans as liberators. Wowee Zowee. Count the body bags.
The surge is working! Iraq is on its way to becoming a democracy.
He found Vladimir Putin a "consistent, transparent, honest and is an easy man to discuss our opportunities and problems with". And Vladimir returns the kindness by treating "President Bush better than some Americans would".
The bailout package will save the economy. The fundamentals are strong. Cut taxes!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

In response to....

Vulnerable toes asked,
why another tumble? u saved up a warchest full of cash ready for the stike [sic]?

i wish.....
my warchest needs replenishment.

anyway, my take when I read about the rally following consolidated efforts by governments around the world was that the rally was a reflection of the expected volatility.

What are the governments using to guarantee anyway? Borrowing public monies and making future generations pay? Moreover it's never easy regaining trust and confidence, in this irrational market, you're more likely to predict movement by flipping a coin. The technical analysts see STI potentially going down to 1660s and we're already hovering below 1900 at the moment. Not shocking cause looking at the charts, STI was above the 2000 mark just before the 1997 Asian financial crisis. It dropped by 60% and was around 800 when all the dust settled and the body count tabulated in 3rd qtr of 1998. Took 2 years to recover before the dot.com bubble burst/post 9-11 but quickly recovered again. Recovery was followed by a fantastic run until the sub-prime crap hits the fan.

Initially, there was still rationality. People held onto things that had value. Oil was the priciest just 4 months ago and now it's the lowest in a 12 months. Even the prices of precious metals are going down. Maybe it's good to buy limited edition watches and art pieces as a better way of retaining value. But even auction houses are complaining of weary bidders. Policy makers tell us that this impending crisis is gonna be long drawn. Yet we get conflicting information from them who tell us that they have "policies" in place to ensure this and that. So what we know is that this crisis is different from other crises. The way it will recover will be different from how others recovered. That's not exactly rocket science. More like social science.

I like the saying "a rising tide lifts all boats". A corollary would be that an ebbing tide will sweep boats out to sea - the old-grey widow-maker, as described by Kipling. Unless we've storm sails, otherwise best to trim our sails and ride out this storm. Venturing further would be crazy.

Good thing we have time horizon, relatively. But I do fear a little about the KL property. But at least as of May 08, it's still pretty much good news. Hope our 8-characters (haha!) don't clash and we should make visits to Waterloo Temple for the Lunar New Year.

Hopefully by 2011 and beyond, after we receive the notice of delivery of vacant possession, we do a successful sub-sale...hiak hiak hiak....but in the mean(est)time, cross our fingers that the risk factors don't kill us. By the way, at the end of it all, with a successful sale (if and only if), I would like to think it was a good choice, given the prevailing conditions. Money was not kept as cash and not subjected to crazy fluctuations or suffering as investments in low-yield bonds. But the risk we are exposed to is much higher. But KL is KL and will remain as KL for a long long time. It's not like the Iskandar Development Region.

Of course it could have been invested elsewhere (dollar-cost averaging etc etc), but we're still ok I think. Even without a sale. the yield of 7% means that your principal is doubled in 10 years. Just use the Rule of 72 : 72/i = y where i = yearly interest rate and y = number of years to double your principal.

Some links to calm our nerves.....here and here.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Man of the Financial Moment

Watching the dead cat bounce, catching a falling knife, timing the (false) bottom....whatever what you might call it....

Who benefitted the most through this period of global finance upheavel? All hail Mr Brown. Gordon Brown.

The man is in his element. Fish in the water. Don't expect an economist to save a crumbling party but trust him to lead the EU (potentially the entire western hemisphere) how to save us from financial ruin.

It takes a man (without any smidgen of charisma) like Gordon Brown to re-instill confidence and trust.

But I am hoping that this rally will take another tumble actually.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Not looking back in anger

I treasure the memories of the decommissioning ceremony of the missile gunboats.

But there is not enough of it.

Maybe it's because throughout the (distinguished) service history of the boats there was only 1 female (a Commanding Officer no less), it was not a tear-filled affair.

Not macho. Not manly. Not allowed.

The ceremony was solemn, dignified but with the hustle and bustle of everyday life, the memories of which are rapidly fading. Not a matter of choice, mind you. The "mind-numbing, spirit-crushing" pace at which weekdays fade into weekends and.....modern life is rubbish.

What is intangible - the memories and feelings of a place, if it is possible to be made tangible, might have a better chance of being vividly remembered.

And this is where photos come in.

P.S. Thanks for the shot glass you bought for me when you holidayed in Hong Kong. It serves as a tangible reminder that despite all my faults, I must have done something right in my life.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

click me

˙looɔ uɯɐp sʞool ʇı ʞuıɥʇ ı ʇnq ˙ǝɯıʇ ʇsɹıɟ ǝɥʇ ʇou sı sıɥʇ

¡ - the sarcasm point

Please read this first. (read this first)

Then see this:


So maybe what meanie actually wanted to say was "So Kind[.]

I'm only guessing.

Definition of "A Bad Day At Work"

definition of "A Bad Day At Work" - Refer to 9 Oct 2008.

"When someone hurts us, we should write it down in sand where winds of forgiveness can erase it away. But, when someone does something good for us, we must engrave it in stone where no wind can ever erase it."

I have another take on the above saying I lifted off the net.

People whose names get written on sand goes to hell. Those whose names are engraved in stone will get to choose where they wanna go.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

We interrupt our normal programme....

You know what's scary?

It's scary when you choose your deputy for the reason that politically she is advantageous. And not because she is worthy. I have no problem with women in politics.

But....I have a problem with incompetence in office. I hope more Americans read newspapers.



No....I am not f78king Matt Damon.

But she is.......


Phuk3t

Back not long from Phuket.

Plenty of sun....plenty of good food (not cheap though) and plenty of fun!

Some experimental pics before uploading more of the usual (ie. pics of sunny beaches, muay thai, vegetarian festival).

The first two were taken while on the way from Kata to Patong. Just a simple play on exposure while seated on a tuktuk. Almost reminds me of some paintings by baoling.


There are probably a couple more but I liked the two above most. The streaks of light at the bottom reminds me of the anime Akira.

The next set is playing with exposure, aperture and movement. The basic scene is the setting sun. So I set a small aperture with longer exposure and just turned the lens around it's axis.

original scene

1/2 turn

3/4 turn

full turn


It's starting to look like pictures of some cosmos taken by the hubble space telescope.

ok maybe not.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

A song a day 90

And your arm felt nice wrapped round my shoulder,
And I, I had a feelin' that I belonged,
And I, I had a feelin' I could be someone,
Be someone, be someone.

=)

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Brand new Puma

I wanted these:
but auntie says these were nicer....
i can't argue with that.

Has integrated drainage system. wow.

I got these just in time for the Volvo Ocean Race 2008 this weekend.

but i still liked the colour blue on shoes....so found these:

but the !@#$%^& shop assistant wanted to sell me old ones, saying they ain't got new pair. lousy service.

i am liking these:
Puma is getting a new lease of life. There was no pun about a cat having 9 lives in that sentence.
What with the recent Usain Bolt and Jamaica's sprinting dominance and also the F1 in Singapore. Puma has tie ups with Ferrari and Redbull Racing. But I am not liking racing shoes.

Friday, October 03, 2008

TINAS-phile - The TIAS effect

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Taken care of

I have made a couple of posts for the days while I am away in Phuket. Enjoy.

TINAS effect

auntie got a digital camera free from AMEX cause of her successful application of a credit card.
as with all free stuff, it wasn't fantastic. Saps battery power like nobody's business.

since I rewarded sis with a camera (she doesn't know I am prepared to foot the bill, until she sees this post of course), I decided to get one for auntie to replace her olympus too.

just in time for the phuket trip of course.

i was rushing around in funan and couldn't really find any nice wrapping paper. decided to get "fail proof" brown paper. it wasn't cheap. because it's not really brown paper. it's brown wrapping paper.

this was how it was wrapped........


Besides the tagline, you should notice the tiny writing at the bottom......here it is, magnified.

How appropriate right? Sex toys invariably are delivered in "discrete brown paper packaging".

And often, batteries are not included.


Nobody trust MIC (made in china) stuff anymore. Although I am quite sure some toys are made of melamine. I thought that this being made in La La Land has a nicer ring to it. Especially when paired with this tagline on the side:


Puts the ooh la la back in your life. Notice that it is about bringing it back in your life. Meaning you must have had it once and somehow lost it...

I like this line....although I am not sure why Latin lovers are such a premium.

I put the package into a Starbucks brown paper bag and gave it to auntie when we were about halfway through a chocolate banana cake in Secret Recipe at Vivo. And it was crowded.

She was all coy when I asked her what she thought it was. She just smiled and asked why was I giving her a gift. (Children's Day).

I tell you, when her eyes picked up the words on the box, the dilation of her pupils was obvious. And she quickly snuck the package back into the bag.

"What is it!"

I tell you, that was a classic look of surprise.

We now call it the "This is not a sextoy" (TINAS) effect.