Friday, July 28, 2006
It used to be only available at Starbucks....now you can get this everywhere...I get my daily dose at the supermart near my house called Sri Kota (yar..it's a branch of that dirty Sri Kota in Brickfields)..for RM4.30!!! Grab one today...you won't regret it!
It's a week of farewells at work, with 2 colleagues leaving for yet better hellholes. And it got me thinking....
1) Why are we giving farewells when those colleagues are leaving for better job with of course better salary (or else they wouldnt have left)? We should be CELEBRATING and those who are leaving should be buying US ...and not the other way round! Think about it, you give false congratulatory remarks..when deep down you're wishing you're the one leaving..hahaha..and cursing the guy's luck thinking you're WAY more qualified than him.
2) DO we need to give farewells for colleagues you are not close to? I mean...you and her/him never hung out together BEFORE he/she resigned...so now you have to attend his farewell party? Doesnt make sense...does it matter if you attended or not? Would he/she even NOTICE if you weren't there? And if you weren't there, do you care if he/she is gonna be offended?...afterall, you're never gonna EVER see him again.....hehe
3) And if you were close to the person leaving, is a farewell then necessary? Are you gonna cut friendship ties just because he/she is leaving the company? If so, what does that maketh of your friendship with him/her? SO friendships made at work are ingenuine?? You leave the company and we're no longer friends...our friendship expires here......! Makes you really ponder WHO in your company are JUST COLLEAGUES and who are FRIENDS...
4) I always thought farewells are like funerals ...not a fan of it...but more recently I just think of it as an excuse to 'makan" and get together.
Well..I dont usually bid farewells...or wish them better luck..blah blah...say it when you mean it. and mean it when you say it.. I think farewells are really for saying goodbyes to the dead..coz you're NEVER gonna see them again (in human form anyway). The rest of y'all leaving this rathole, well...you're leaving for a better place...so you're not getting a farewell treat from me!
Wednesday, July 26, 2006
WE seriously need to review the way we Malaysians communicate!! The way we speak, influenced by Malay, Hukkien, Cantonese, Tamil language, has somewhat evolved to some rojak language that I can't quite grasp anymore. I used to think our language is unique..one in a million...now I think we were just fooling ourselves, because even if we were multi-lingual , we most certainly are not living in "harmony" as most travelogues would say.
I had a meeting yesterday with my suppliers that comprises of a Malay, a Mamak and my colleague who was a Malay. We had a coffee session, and I swear, I only understood probably 40% of the conversation, and most of the time, I was giving very general comment like "Oh, yar, yar....", " Oh really?"... And, we were all speaking in a common language, Malay. Even I made an effort to converse in Malay. Throughout the conversation, I fine myself zoning out and wondering if this was caused by bad conversation skills or by the rojak language the Malaysians created........
In much contrast, I came upon this group of well English speakers in the TESOL class I'm undertaking. I mean, they're really good, some are teaching English in International Schools so go figure! The lecturer encourages constant interaction among the students, and there was a live and animatic discussion. But, even so, even with that kind of fluency, there was one particular lady who kept missing the point in ALL our discussions. And mind you, in this class, everyone's expected to speak proper English, so we weren't exactly speaking Manglish. And then there was one who was a teacher but he uses the BIG vocabulary in the wrong context...and this guy is supposed to be an English teacher!!! Have mercy on his poor don't-know-better students!
So, it's definitely time to review and re-evaluate the way we speak. Is it the language we are using? Is it our inability to decipher and analyze when in a robust conversation? Is it the lack of general knowledge? Until we are able to pinpoint at least our own flaws, we Malaysians may never make it to the "international" scene to discuss "properly" with the *big boys*.
Tuesday, July 25, 2006
Is it wrong to feel that some people need to get out and see the world? - yes I'm judging people by their lack of exposure to other cultures.
Is it wrong to judge people just by the topic of their daily conversations?
Is it wrong to be judgemental at all? Well, we hear 'thou shalt not be judgemental' all the time. But realistically, who doesn't judge? At the back of our head somewhere, somehow we are judgemental ALL THE TIME. Racism, sexism and the like exist everywhere. One cannot claim that he/she is 100% non racist or non judgemental because such person does not exist in this world. One who exerts this ridiculous claim of course is subject to being judged by moi :). Indeed everyone tries to be less racist or judgemental and thus one can only be measured by the severity level, thats all.
Is it wrong to choose your friends? Again, we are 'suppose' to treat everyone equally as friends. But that doesn't happen in this world! Everyone chooses their friends/gang/clique whatever you call it all the time. Is it wrong to have no interest in hanging out with a certain group of people? You will be branded as arrogant/stuckup/cocky and the like IF-AND-ONLY-IF you admit it. But the fact is, everyone does it all the time but by not admitting it and be politically correct about it, they're saved from being labeled. Have you ever heard someone say 'I don't wanna hang out with him because he's dumb'. I have. I know it's not the nicest thing to say, but hey I'd give him credit for having the guts to say it out. I'd prefer someone who's blunt on facts than otherwise.
Is it wrong to label something as 'This is soo Malaysian'? Unfortunately, in the Malaysian work scene, people still stick in groups and talk about people and engage in meaningless conversations. And yes, this is 'sooo Malaysian'. Maybe I'm just too cocky to find value in joining the crowd, maybe I'm the one who just don't get it ...
Tuesday, July 18, 2006
It's fascinating when you think about all the wonderful and most celebrated ad campaigns have done over the century..and here i've picked some of the best slogans...
1) The Power of Dreams- Honda
2) I'm Loving It!- McDonalds
3) Just Do It- Nike
4) The World's Local Bank- HSBC
5) BMW- The Ultimate Driving Machine 6) Diamonds are Forever- Debeers
7) M'm M'm Good- Campbell's
8) Let Your Fingers Do the Walking- Yellow Pages
9) M'&Ms melts in your mouth, not in your hand -M&M
10) Connecting people- Nokia
11) Think Different- Apple
12) 1,000 songs in your pocket- IPOD Nano
13) Every little helps. - Tesco
14) Screw yourself. —IKEA
15) The World On Time — FedEx
16) Shift_xxx— Nissan ; where "xxx" varies
17) We're number two. We try harder. — Avis
18) Buy it. Sell it. Love it. — eBay
19) Invent- Hewlett Packard
Monday, July 17, 2006
Anyone went for the recent Postgradasia Fair which was held from 14th to 15th July, just last weekend? Were you as unfortunate as I was to have only managed to attend the last talk, which was on what one of our LOCAL UNIVERSITY is all about and its postgraduate offerings? If you did, much heartfelt pity for you. If anything, the talk has affirmed my conviction that so MUCH of our tax money is going to complete WASTE.
What seemed to be the focus of the talk was the speakers’ REPEATED adulation for foreign university professors. Over-glorification of everything foreign, how far superior foreign universities’ courses are, their valued comments, their state-of-the-art resources; I think I’ve painted a clear picture. While I am in agreement that foreign universities are certainly top-notch and that they deserve to be so highly ranked due to their commitment to education, their unmistakable dedication, and yes, I have full confidence that it would do us a great deal of good to learn from them, it does not particularly sit well with me that the speaker seem to adore quoting foreign lecturers, the comments they make. I can’t believe we have to get the foreign universities to FORMULATE the courses for this local Uni. Shouldn’t this have been the local professors’ duty? And should this not have been the rightful outcome after they have spent hours (& plenty $$$) VISITING foreign establishments to determine the best education system to emulate (if we are so crippled in designing our own system)? Call me crazy but this is a form of kow-towing for me. If this is where we’re headed, we might as well not have fought for MERDEKA! Are our educationists so inferior that they are UNABLE to form opinions and comments of their own that they need to quote others? One or two mentions is forgivable, but more than that shows the terrible state the education system is in; that among the many fine educationists in Malaysia, are some who are incapable of developing their own thoughts. How can we en-task such persons to educate the brains of Malaysia? And we talk about VISION 2020? No wonder the ‘brain-drain’ syndrome afflicts us..
It makes me laugh that the speaker can mention that the library is modeled after some top foreign university’s library. Is that important? The point that is clearly being missed is that if we have resources that can match the greats, why are we NOT as outstanding as them in academia? All that money spent on housing 500,000 books, and buying those 500,000 books.. goodness, can u imagine how much ALL THAT would have costs?
If you think you’re possibly the UNLUCKIEST person on earth, how you must have the worst job in the world, or that you have the most unfortunate childhood ever.. I strongly recommend that you read these 2 books, which were true accounts of the life of the writer, Frank McCourt:-
1. Angela’s Ashes
He was Irish. You might wonder how an Asian person could possibly relate to him. But it is the way he tells it. So honest and direct. It is so devoid of any self-pity and at times even ground-shakingly hilarious that makes his books so interesting. But please be fore-warned that it can also be so heart-wrenching that you can't help but shed a tear for him. Such page turners they both were that even when I was supposed to be concentrating on whatever I should be doing, I found myself thinking of the lines in his books.
I hate to spoil your experience, should you decide to read them, but let me share with you the very start of the book that got me instantly hooked..
“When I look back on my childhood I wonder how I managed to survive at all. It was, of course, a miserable childhood: the happy childhood is hardly worth your while. Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood, and worse yet is the miserable Irish Catholic childhood." – excerpt from Angela’s Ashes
Sunday, July 16, 2006
I miss walking in the snow on a clear moonlit night by the canal. It's a quiet christmas night. The streets are empty and silent. Yellow street lights lit the path and christmas lights lined the homes. Christmas trees are displayed proudly by the windows. I could hear a faint christmas tune coming from one of the homes. The air is crisp. It's only -18C, perfect for a walk. As the xmas tune fades, came an all too familiar sound of shoveling. Ah, the perfect time to shovel the driveway - while the snow is still fresh & soft. For me, this is the best time for a walk. So peaceful, so very comfortable as I stroll along snug in my winter jacket, scarf, hat and oh so warm gloves. There's a green flag by the canal, indicating that the ice is safe for skaters. There are couples, kids, even babies comfortably secured in sledges pulled by mummy & daddy. A fine winter night will not be complete without a Killaloe Sunrise BeaverTail pitt stop + a warm hot choc or Kettlemann's sesame bagel with homemade blueberry cream cheese.
This is what I miss ...
Friday, July 14, 2006
And so..this new season,,,Rockstar Supernova..3 great legends get together to form a band - Gilby Clarke (Guns N Roses), Tommy Lee (Motley Crue) and Jason Newsted (Metallica). And now..they're looking for a lead singer...And so the search begins. I've seen probably only 2 episodes now..and I'm totally rooting for Dilana- she made Ring of Fire by Johnny Cash work...how many can do that? It's a great song..but Dilana made it work....awesome...
Thursday, July 13, 2006
It's definitely the ultimate love story, only because it is so real and endearing. I've seen this movie probably 3 times, and each time, there is new discovery, new insights, new interpretation. Only 80 minutes but the dialogues are superb, and it's reflective of how people actually interact. The movie made me realize how we are always trying to hide our flaws and insecurities, so we lie when we don't really have to, we say things we don't really mean, we never reveal our weakness but instead we decorate it with superfluous stories.
This movie is a sequel to Before Sunrise that was made in 1995. This sequel tells of their reunion after 9 years. And the 9 years is significant, as the two have evolved, from relationships to career, all the works. And one thing that Celine (Julie Delphy) said that hits me is that we sometimes let go of the person who we maybe at that moment was the perfect match, because you were young and you thought better ones will come along. And then, only to realize, in later years, that you just let go of THE ONE. I think most of us in some relationships one way or another have that fear. A must-see definitely..defines how a love story should be told.
Monday, July 10, 2006
The gist of it:- Perak MCA Chief, Ong Ka Chuan made this comment "Study hard to achieve excellent results or you may end up cooking and washing clothes at home for your family." to the 'boys' as there are currently more girls enrolled in universities.
Is it just me or does every other female (especially the homemakers) in this country find this remark absolutely tasteless/insulting and downright stupid? People who are minding the country, should really think hard before they shoot their mouths off.
Why am I so peeved, you ask?
Well, for starters, why should there be anything wrong with a man cooking and washing clothes at home FOR the FAMILY? Especially at this day and times, there are in fact many men who do help their wives or moms with the household chores. I'm sure even you yourself can name a few men you know who actually does this, and who do it without any complaints to boot. Anyhow, how can they not when women are also helping to supplement the household income. It isn't like the olden times when the males are often the sole breadwinners. With that said, I don't see why a woman who decides to be a homemaker, is doing anything less important than her husband who brings in the money. Someone needs to take care of the children, rite? Even without children, you still need somebody to turn those dollar bills into actual FOOD to eat, correct? Ask any homemaker what his/her day entails, and you will be surprised with the amount of energy they have just to accomplish their tasks. They are such skillful multi-taskers that I don't believe the title 'homemaker' is actually suitable. Instead, they are really the "Family CEO". They are the ones who cook the food we have every dinner, who has to queue up to get the bills paid, who makes sure we have clean clothes to wear, who educates the kids.. the list goes on. I'm sure every one of us are grateful for what our "Family CEO(s)", be it female or male, have done for us. Are we not thankful that we can head-along to the office, freely, knowing that someone will be taking care of the home? Maybe some of us are no longer staying at home, but do we not appreciate our childhood when our "Family CEO(s)" always seem to be there for us, for all our times of need, when we scrape our knees, when we need someone to hold our hand on our first day to school, when we need someone to listen to our heartaches and rants? I'm sure we are all more than thankful..
Lastly, it is my imminent wish that one day, our great scientists are able to formulate some sorta weapon that is able to selectively destroy the knuckle heads such as those who make idiotic comments as exampled above. Amen..
Friday, July 07, 2006
Despite the disheartening loss to Italy in the semi-finals. I think Germany has achieved something far more precious than the CUP. For the first time since WW2, the Germans now feel more comfortable expressing their patriotism in public. They have been a great host and have done a tremendous job in showing the compassionate side of Germany to the world. They have earned a place in the hearts of the world - this time in a positive way. Hence, it is comforting to see the world's gradual acceptance of them overcoming their remose and to once again be proud of their country. Of course, the history can't be denied but hopefully will be acknowledged more graciously.
The World Cup has also probably played a role in bringing the somehow-still-divided post-reunification Germany together.
So, the Germans did win afterall - a finer reputation and a positive national spirit ...
A quote from a friend 'I am proud to be German, now even more' ...
Tuesday, July 04, 2006
Here's a series of Noodles variations I had while I was in Taipei.. Top one is 100 Yuan with 2 other side dishes, in Taipei 101 foodcourt. Gosh, I wish the food in Malaysia's foodcourt was this good! The middle one is Beef Noodles, real popular in Taiwan-this one I had in some pariah shoplot nearby my hotel..but was pretty good..and only for 65 Yuan. The last one is "Shuen Lat" or Sweet and Sour Noodles. The noodles were scrapped off a giant dough- was only 50 Yuan..