29 November 2005

From My Inbox #2: Chestnuts 2005

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No, it didn't come like this. But all I did was to make it into one column. Otherwise, the choice of format, colours, and fonts — all theirs.

Shoddy e-mail advertising job aside, Hossan Leong and Jonathan Lim are an absolute riot.

I had caught their House of the Flying Chestnuts last year, and before that, Chestnuts Unloaded: Curse of the Black Pearl Bubble Tea in 2003. Hossan Leong is a fairly recent replacement* addition, considering that this is the ninth installment of Chestnuts. The original duo was made up of Jonathan Lim and Sean Yeo. In fact, Sean Yeo was still performing in 2003's Chestnuts.

Unfortunately, I don't know where my diary is, or I'd quote from it (where I wrote about House of the Flying Chestnuts). Let's see, IIRC, on the night that I went, the special guest was asked to demonstrate something with a banana. I forgot his name, though.

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And oh, they had this scene where Chiang Ziyi and Lucy Liu traded bitchy remarks that were sometimes touché, or even politically incorrect, to say the least. An example:

Lucy Liu: In my movies, no subtitles are necessary when I speak English.

Chiang Ziyi: Hmpf. At least I'm not a second-class citizen in my own country.

Anyway, I've already got my ticket for this year's Chestnuts. Heh. Am looking forward to it.

*Just kidding. Hossan Leong is mad funny! His mere presence is enough to make people crack up, as was the case at The Necessary Stage's Mardi Gras (2003). I thought that play didn't quite live up to the hype; it also had this incest subplot that was totally out of the blue. It made the audience go "Huh?" — literally.

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28 November 2005



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As seen on eMusic.

On a slightly related note, someone wanted to hire a monk:
Can I hire a tibetan monk (or any buddhist monk) to live in a spare bedroom in my house? to walk around the house chanting, burning incense and basically keeping me relaxed? Perhaps he could even help out with the chores and watch the kids while my wife and I step out for a movie?

How would I go about contacting a monk in order to make the offer to them?

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27 November 2005

Firefox Mania

While searching for a particular Firefox graphic, I came across a series of funny Firefox ads. I liked this one best.

If, for some (inexplicable) reason, you are still using Internet Explorer, take a look at "Top 10 Reasons to Switch". And if you remain unconvinced, here's another 13 reasons by:

Go on...

By Shari Chankhamma of Six Killer Bunnies

Not that Firefox really needs any adopting (but that is one cute fox that I just had to put up); it has got its fair share of supporters, as is evidenced by Spread Firefox, for one.

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Of course, some Firefox users were bound to make their own gorgeous versions of the Firefox logo, complete with anime foxgirls.

By MAC de Monar

By Satoshi "Toy" Igarashi of TOYBOXARTS

Click here for more Firefox anime foxgirls. And here's some other Firefox-related graphics that I liked:

By Paul Smith

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By the folks at Spread Firefox

Found off Spread Firefox

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Found off Gearcritech

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Found off Okazoo

And oh, I didn't find the picture I was originally looking for after all. Boo.

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25 November 2005


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From "You Don't Know a Damn Thing, Lady" at Talk Talk China.

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24 November 2005


"A Romanian monk and four nuns have been charged with murder after a nun died during an exorcism in which she was crucified and left without food for three days..." (Link to original article)

I know fanatics sometimes feel compelled to do the craziest things in religion's name, but it still surprised and appalled me to see that there are still real life cases of exorcism being practised. And worse still — despite the death of the so-called possessed, there are still supporters of the practice. What the hell?

Why is that these murderers (oh, that's what they are) still think they are right when they have wasted a God-given life who shared their faith?

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23 November 2005

Just For the Record

The Straits Times, Home section
22 November 2005

Service With A Smile...

Helpful gesture from neighbourhood store

I would like to say a big thank you to Mr Tan of Thong Seng Home Appliances, a neighbourhood store at Block 121, Bukit Merah Lane.

I had ordered and paid for a refrigerator from Mr Tan on Oct 25, and had scheduled delivery to my mother's place on Nov 11, the same day she was due to move into a new house.

The shop did not have stocks of that model, so he arranged for the manufacturer, which has a base here, to deliver the refrigerator directly to us.

The day it was to arrive, though, the manufacturer called to say that it could not deliver that day as it had "system problems".

The earliest it could deliver was almost a week later.

I explained that my mother had medication that needed to be refrigerated and that she had not taken the old refrigerator to the new house.

The medicines would not last a week outside the fridge.

But the person on the line offered no viable solution, and told us to either contact the store or cancel the order.

I called Mr Tan and explained my situation, and he offered to see if he could secure a faster delivery. He called back 10 minutes later, saying he got the same answer.

But he then offered to loan us a second-hand refrigerator, at no cost, to refrigerate my mother's medication and food.

Just before midnight that day, Mr Tan and his colleague delivered it and said he would collect it after the new one was delivered.

My family was most impressed and touched by the exemplary service offered by this neighbourhood store.

Mr Tan, who is in his 50s and speaks only
1 dialect and a little Mandarin, might not have had detailed technical knowledge of the products he sells, but he certainly understands — much better than the manufacturer — what customer service is about.

Choo Kok Fah

After this letter was published, Mr Choo called up the Mr Tan in question to tell him about it, causing him to happily purchase a copy of The Straits Times2 (even though no one in the family reads it).

Mr Tan then proudly showed me the letter, and even read out a few lines from it. Hehe.

Yes, Mr Tan is min far.

In a country that's, unfortunately, not exactly known for good customer service (just ask any Singaporean), it's nice to know someone appreciated Mr Tan's service so much as to write to The Straits Times.

Now, if only The Straits Times will publish letters such as this. Prolly in another lifetime (or two, or three lifetimes), I reckon.

1Actually, Mr Tan speaks (not-so-good) English, (colloquial) Mandarin, (colloquial) Cantonese, (colloquial) Hokkien, and a smattering of Malay.

2We'd be keeping this.

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19 November 2005

Am All Right with Blood Art

Just came across some lovely paintings (via Ivan at Recent Runes) by Vanessa Tiegs. She uses menstrual blood as a medium. Yep, that's right.

An excerpt from her FAQ on her Visual Menstrual Journal clarifies some:
My paintings are a statement about cycles. They are affirmative images that address menstruation visually. It's easy to joke about menstruation because it's hidden.

On a side note, I am displeased (well, dismayed at first) to see that "alright" is listed on Merriam-Webster Online and on Dictionary.com. This word might be commonly used, but that doesn't make it right in my eyes, especially as it seems that people only spell it so because "all right" sounds like one word. And if that alone makes it right, it would make all those people who spell "you're" as "your", and "they're" as "their" right as well now, wouldn't it?

(And now, in an attempt to sound less bitchy...) I guess it's fine for informal usage, but sometimes I wonder if the people who use it know when not to use it?

In conclusion, "alright" is like... a rumoured bastard child of "all right". I regard it with about as much respect as I have for "irregardless".

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17 November 2005

Got Balls? Rainbow Skittles

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This picture is from a shooting of an advertisement for Bravia's (Sony) range of LCD and 3LCD televisions. The amazing thing is that it was done without any CGI. Totally cool. Watch the video here. (via w)

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From My Inbox

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13 November 2005

A Southern Recipe

The movie made me google for recipes.

Fried Green Tomatoes

Vegetable oil, for frying

¼ cup (at least) bacon grease, optional

4 large green tomatoes, in ¼-inch slices

2/3 cup milk

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup cornmeal

½ tsp. salt

½ tsp. black pepper

½ tsp. cayenne (optional)

Dash garlic powder (optional)

Heat oil (and bacon grease) in skillet over medium high heat.

Slice four large green tomatoes into quarter-inch thick slices and place in bowl of milk.

In a shallow dish, combine flour, cornmeal, salt and rest of seasonings.

Remove tomato slices from milk and dredge in cornmeal mixture to lightly coat. Dip slices back into milk, then dredge again in cornmeal mixture.

Shake slices gently and add to hot oil in frying pan. Fry until each side is crisp and golden brown, about two to three minutes per side. Drain on paper towels. Serve hot with ketchup, hot sauce or gravy or eat alone.

This is from Joe's Place. And here's two other recipes that use slightly different ingredients.'

Of course, it's not very likely that I'd get off my lazy ass to make them, but consider this to be for future reference.

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10 November 2005

This is A Blot

Read the whole article here.

And in other news: "Heated bra aims to save the world".

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08 November 2005

Looking Good XD

Ha ha, I almost died laughing when I recognised my ex-school uniform in this web comic on The Students' Sketchpad. They describe their blog as, "Xpress cartooning by two students, En & Hou reflecting the Singapore education system and its schools."

Speaking of school uniforms...

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No, I don't know who they are. I got this off a comment left on an entry of Blinkymummy's where she blogged on this guy who wore a school uniform for Halloween.

EDITED on 18/11/05 2:44 p.m.: I realised I had left out something very vital in this entry after I read Susan's comment, something very vital in the form of two letters and a hyphen. -_-;; Now, if you'd excuse me, I have to go ram my head into the nearest wall.

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07 November 2005

Accidental Long Rant

On 8 October 2005, a Beijing gamer Snowly (character's name in game) died from playing World of Warcraft. A week later, an online funeral was held for Snowly in which hundreds of players attended. I first read about this at Joi Ito's blog where he had his own thoughts on the matter along with a quote from another blog. Here's the quote in its entirety (minus the links):
[004] Snowly of The World of Warcraft (Xinhua) A young girl nicknamed "Snowly" died last month after playing the online game "World of Warcraft" for several continuous days during the national day holiday. Several days before Snowly's death, the girl was said to be preparing for a relatively difficult part of the game (namely, to kill the Black Dragon Prince) and had very little rest. She told her friends that she felt very tired. A big online funeral was held for Snowly one week after her death (see photo from The Mirror).

Curious to know more besides what was quoted, I clicked on the links which led me to a Yahoo China news article (in Chinese) and a China View article (in English). The latter cited CRIENGLISH.com as the source of the article. (Yes, the China View article is the same as the CRIENGLISH.com article.)

Well, the Yahoo China news article certainly had more details. But one thing was odd. Nowhere was it mentioned that Snowly was a "young girl". In fact, after some googling and dismissing of articles, I found a DoNews.com article (in Chinese) that says Snowly was a 28-year-old man.

I don't doubt the credibility of that as a CNET (China) news article used the same article, and both sites cite their source to be Shanghai Morning Post (新闻晨报). Numerous other articles also point to Shanghai Morning Post as being the origin.

On the other hand, the few English articles I found on the subject seemed to be parroting one another (especially the case for blogs)—only one had major paraphrasing and some different things to say, and that was an article from The Inquirer. However, I chose to dismiss that article as well mainly because of this: "The event was only made more morose by the more recent death of another player named Nan Ren Gu Shi, another videogame related death". The Yahoo China news article did mention the death of this player, but they also mentioned the circumstances surrounding his death. Suffice it to say, Nan Ren Gu Shi's death was only videogame-related in the sense that he was an avid gamer.

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01 November 2005

Yes, I was listening to...

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Ashlee Simpson's second album "I Am Me".

Oh, shut up. Yes, her voice ain't that good (In fact, it reminds me of Hole's Courtney Love.) And she got caught lip-syncing on SNL—so what? She's not the first artist to be doing that, and she certainly won't be the last. I think she deserves at least a little bit of credit for being brave enough to actually try to continue with music as a career.

Call it a guilty pleasure or whatever you will, but I enjoyed some of the tracks on her first album "Autobiography" ("Pieces of Me", "Better Off", "Love Me for Me" and especially "La La". XD), and so far, I think I'd like this second album too.

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Found the underlined portion funny. XD

On a sidenote, when I first saw her album cover, I wasn't paying much attention to it, and I thought she had her knees drawn to her chest in the picture (i.e. Legs against chest with arms around the legs). Note that the picture I first saw was the one right at the start of this entry. Yeah, the one in the RealPlayer window.

Then I clicked on the Amazon link that gives an enlarged picture of the album cover.

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Yes, I may be quite blind, but... but... that picture was small...

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