Monthly Archives: July 2009

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A Blogging Dilemma

A Blogging Dilemma

If written word is the window to one’s soul, I shudder to think what kind of view you get through mine.

I used to think that blogging is an expression of your emotional being. States of elation, despair and frustrations flow with your words, reaching out to your readers in hope that they will feel and share your feelings.

But as I trawled back the history of this blog, I realised my writings are horrendous at best, stupefying at worst… save for a couple of the more melodramatic posts.

I could justify my failure by saying I am being myself in my own space, but whom am I kidding? I yearn to be understood, and I should write to be understood.

Back to the drawing writing board now.

(Photo by andyp_uk)

Dreaming of Santorini

I have just been there last year, but undeniably the island has a pull on me. Should I go again? This time perhaps hopping over to Mykonos too. And it’s just after summer, so things will still be glorious but less crowded.

Though, I do wish that I have someone to go with me.

(Photos by dbmahlum)

Harry Potter – Fun with Innuendo

The Great Hall of Hogwarts

(This was replicated from somewhere in Facebook. If you are the owner, do alert me so that I can credit you appropriately)

Because God knows we all need some levity, right?

Upon receiving The Order of the Phoenix, we couldn’t help but notice the high frequency of the phrase “Flat on his back.” Alerted by this fact, we looked a little closer and compiled a list of wonderfully out of context quotes for the amusement and edification of all. Curiously, most of them seem to involve either Fred and George or Snape. We think there might be something to this. We tried to add page numbers, but occasionally our amusement overwhelmed our sense of proper citation protocol. Also, we were too lazy to go back and look them up. We regret the inconvenience. Actually, no. We don’t. (edit: Missing page numbers have been provided by Aquilus Veritas. Thanks!)

~ M-teki and Jack of None

Without further ado….

The List.

——————————————————————————–

“What d’you mean, I’m not brave in bed?” said Harry, completely nonplussed. (14)

“…I know you did Mark Evans two nights ago –”
“He was asking for it,” snarled Dudley. (13)

“I heard you last night,” said Dudley breathlessly. “Talking in your sleep. Moaning.” (15)

“Ah well…wand still in your jeans?” (53)

“JUST BECAUSE YOU’RE ALLOWED TO USE MAGIC NOW YOU DON’T HAVE TO WHIP YOUR WAND OUT FOR EVERY TINY LITTLE THING!” (84)

“You two just Apparated on my knees!”
“Yeah, well, it’s harder in the dark –” (97)

“There was a groan of bedsprings, and Harry’s mattress descended a few inches as George sat down near his feet.
“So, got there yet?” said George eagerly. (100)

“…screwing up her eyes each time with the same pained expression she had worn back in Harry’s bedroom.” (85)

“Ron was lying sprawled on his back with his mouth wide open.” (121)

“Quite astonishing, the way you contrive to wriggle out of very tight holes.” (154)

“He’s having a go at my mother!” Seamus yelled. (218)

“Or any part of your body, really, we’re not fussy where we stick this.” (343)

“…when it appears, it is always equipped for the seeker’s needs. Dobby has used it, sir,” said the elf, dropping his voice and looking guilty, “when Winky has been very drunk.” (387)

“She’s somethin’ when she’s roused, Olympe…fiery, you know…’spect it’s the French in her…” (432)

“He was rather taller than Snape, who, Harry noticed, had balled his fist in the pocket of his cloak over what Harry was sure was the handle of his wand.” (520)

“Stand up and take out your wand, Potter.” (533)

“I thought not,” said Snape, watching him closely. “You let me get in too far. You lost control.” (535)

“Manners, Potter,” said Snape dangerously. “Now, I want you to close your eyes.”
Harry threw him a filthy look before doing as he was told. He did not like the idea of standing there with his eyes shut while Snape faced him, carrying a wand. (535)

“He was on all fours again on Snape’s office floor.” (536)

“Ron wrenched the hangings apart, and Harry stared up at him in the moonlight, as he lay flat on his back.” (586)

“Yeah, Montague tried to do us during break,” said George.
“What do you mean, ‘tried’?” said Ron quickly. (627)

“Well, we’ll soon find out, won’t we?” said Snape smoothly. “Wand out, Potter.”
Harry moved into his usual position… (638)

“But whether James really did take off Snape’s pants, Harry never found out.” (649)

“…did things with a wand I’ve never seen before…” (711)

(Readers’ submissions after the jump)
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The One With The 30th Birthday Video

This came as a surprise! Didn’t know that Chris took a video of me cutting my birthday cake. Thanks dude!

And yes, I still hate my own voice on videos. Gah!

Here’s the blog post on my 30th birthday party

Beer Festival @ Lan Kwai Fong

It’s summer in Hong Kong. Like you won’t believe it. Everywhere the weather is sweltering. Airconds are in full blast.

But with the hot weather, comes the annual Lan Kwai Fong Beerfest.

The festival was held from July 11-12th from 1pm-late. Being held for six consecutive years, the Beerfest features food and beer from around the globe, live music and dance shows, drinking and eating competitions and cooking demonstrations.

Beer Fest @ Lan Kwai Fong

Being the beer fanatic that I am (check out my beer belly for proof), of course I went to and indulged at this thrilling festive event! The entire Lan Kwai Fong was transformed into a carnival-like street fair, with multitude of booths spilling the sidewalk hawking their beer. And not mere pints, mind you. You buy them by the yard.

Beer Fest @ Lan Kwai Fong

Thanks to Kevin, Keith and Connie for such a fun night out. I know, I am a bad influence :P

Full set of photos here. I didn’t have my camera with me, so used their phones for this set.

My H1N1 Experience

Before you start to panic, let me just clarify that I did not get the dreaded virus.

But I was very paranoid of getting Swine-d. In my second week in Hong Kong, I developed a severe (and productive) cough, which lasted for weeks. It caused much inconvenience to my colleagues around me. They were unsure if my cough should be a cause for alarm, or it was just because of the level of pollution here.

Seeing doctor in HK wasn’t of much help. Despite finishing the plethora of medicine prescribed to me, my cough did not recover fully.

And soon it was time for return to Singapore for my birthday party.

I didn’t take any chances on the plane. The mask didn’t contribute to my aesthetic value.

The day before my birthday party, I was trawling all over town running errands. I guess the hard work plus the lack of sleep didn’t agree well with me. Towards the evening, I developed a slight fever.

My fear for H1N1 returned. And I told this to a dear friend. She kept asking me to get it checked out. What if I was indeed Swine-d and infect all my party guests?

So I did exactly that. I went to Mt. Alvernia hospital, and I tweeted my way through the experience. You should read these tweets bottoms up.



My fellow Twitterers complimented me for being socially responsible and doing the right thing. Some commented following my tweets was like following a reality show.

To be honest, all I wanted to do is to make sure the party can go on the next day. I mean, it is not every day a man turn 30, is it?

And oh, my cough has been totally cured. After one dose of medicine from the Singapore doctors.

Really, I don’t want to compare between Hong Kong and Singapore, but this really speaks for itself.

Justin & His Awesomeness Hit Hong Kong

And so, the famous and ever popular Justin Jap visited Hong Kong together with his buddy Vic for the week. Words from the street had it that they terrorised people all over Hong Kong, from Tin Shui Wai to Tsim Sha Tsui to Ocean Park to The Peak…

Honestly, this duo of energiser bunnies visited more places in Hong Kong in one week than I did in one month.

View from The Peak, Hong Kong

The three of us made an unlikely trio (mainly because of the age gap) to brave the slopes to visit The Peak. It was the first time for me to visit the hilltop at night, and I eagerly anticipated the famous 8 p.m. HK night light show.

Which was a huge disappointment.

The night continued through the winding streets of Lan Kwai Fong, where drinks were had and secrets were spilled.

Ooohhh… I will never see Justin the same way again. LOL.

Justin & I @ Lan Kwai Fong

Thanks babe. Hope to catch you again before you fly off for your studies.

Full set of photos from the night here.

The Presidential Speech from “The Independence Day” (by Bill Pullman)

This is an inspirational speech from my all -time favorite movie, The Independence Day. I watched the show back in 1996, and till today I still watch the show at least once every few months.

Good morning.

In less than an hour, aircraft from here will join others from around the world. And you will be launching the largest aerial battle in this history of mankind.

Mankind… that word should have new meaning for all of us today.

We can’t be consumed by our petty differences anymore.

We will be united in our common interests.

Perhaps its fate that today is the 4th of July, and you will once again be fighting for our freedom, not from tyranny, oppression, or persecution; but from annihilation.

We’re fighting for our right to live, to exist.

And should we win the day, the 4th of July will no longer be known as an American holiday, but as the day when the world declared in one voice:

“We will not go quietly into the night!

We will not vanish without a fight!

We’re going to live on!

We’re going to survive!”

Today, we celebrate our Independence Day!

A Pilgrimage to Wong Tai Sin

A Pilgrimage to Wong Tai Sin

(Photo by beatdrifter)

I am neither a superstitious nor religious person, but I do believe in a divine encounters. I believe that if there are things out there bigger than yourself, than the universe, that defy explanation.

Wong Tai Sin holds an iconic status in the world of Taoism. I have learned enough from Hong Kong drama series to know this is the place to go if I needed to pray for something.

I remember praying here during my interview trip for blessings so that I will get the job. And I remember returning here to repay my gratitude for getting the job that I want.

And yesterday I went back again.

I held up the burning jossticks, stood under the incessant rain, and muttered to the heaven above on my wishes, my fear and my hope. I forced myself to speak slowly so that Divinity can catch my torrent of Cantonese words.

As I neared the end of my prayer, my heart clenched in sadness and my eyes welled up in tears. Things have been so bad and so uncertain recently, that I am living in a constant limbo not knowing what will happen. I straddled between doing what is right and what is wrong.

I want this so much, with all my heart. It spells all my hope for the future.

I can’t imagine living my life any other way.

The 30th Birthday

And so, the birthday weekend has come and gone. I wasn’t expecting a big blast, seeing myself as being stranded half way between two countries, but the celebration was better than I have expected.

Of course, I spent the 25th June (pencil down in your calendar, people) in Hong Kong. I still remember counting down to my birthday doing a a list of my achievements in the last 10 years of my life, eating some instant noodle as a form of celebration alone in my hotel room, and feeling insanely contented with life even though I was all alone. I have Facebook and Twitter to thank for.

So the next day in office, all was quiet and calm as usual, and then the whole department went out for lunch at a nearby neighbourhood cluster for some Korean BBQ food. It was surprising good, not to mention cheap. Perhaps that’s because we were at Taipo, which is so far north of Hong Kong, everything is almost half the price of city’s price tags. I also bought some of my favorite egg tarts, priced at an unbelievable HKD2.50 each (that’s like SDG0.40!) without a care of my expanding waistline.

Celebration with colleagues at Taipo

There was a surprise cake… not so much of a surprise because I was with them when my colleagues bought it (I even told them which is my favourite), but they shocked me when they lighted the candle in the midst of a departmental meeting. So a red-faced me had to endure an entire Happy-Birthday-song in front of 15+ colleagues, whom by then knew I was still a “young” 30.

And so the next day, it was my flight back to Singapore. Have to wake up very early just to make my way to the airport. I was expecting to see a sea of passengers donned with masks, just like in a sci-fi movie, but to my disappointment (and fear), I was one of the handful who was wearing a mask. And the flight was a connecting journey for a load of Singapore-bound travelers from… San Francisco.

I am sure I was too paranoid when I donned this mask in a hurry while waiting to board the plane.

The flight was rather uneventful… except when a stewardess strode up my row of seats while I was asleep, asking my fellow passengers if it was one of our birthday. Of course they said no, and by the time I was awake enough to decipher what was being said, the stewardess shrugged it off as a mistake, and walked away.

Anyway, so I landed in Singapore, and soon a flurry of activities ensued as I rushed around to do my errands. Preparation for party, cutting my hair, buying clothes etc. I thought I would be able to have a relaxed time in Singapore, but it was more stressful than I thought.

Ah, but the end result was worth it. Very, very much so. On that Saturday night, the 27th June, I celebrated my birthday properly with a gang of close friends at my house. The theme was… well, you figure it out yourself. I will let the photos to do the talking :)

30th Birthday Celebration

The party props. Feather boas ruled the night!

30th Birthday Celebration

The sumptuous dinner spread that night, by Zingrill, the same good people who run Breeks. The food was very very good, and the price is similar to your typical half-past-six caterer out there. The service was also top-notch. Highly recommended!

30th Birthday Celebration

Chris and Jessie, who didn’t stay very long this time round. I think my parties must have scared them. LOL.

30th Birthday Celebration

My lovely Cheryl, who helped me a lot with the preparations for the party, gave me a wonderful gift; a framed threesome portraits of us and Shafik, whom at the time of party, must be crawling in mud at Tekong. Poor dude. I wished he was there.

30th Birthday Celebration

Yali and Tony came for night dressed strictly to the theme! Yali, I think I still have at least half carton of your beer in my fridge :)

30th Birthday Celebration

Niza and Anna were easily the best dressed for the night. Look at the shades of pink. I loveeeeeed it!

30th Birthday Celebration

Dora made herself famous with her deliciously lethal drinks that night, and Terence got famous because of his impeccable photography skills (and unsuccessful attempts trying to keep his wife in check), hehe.

30th Birthday Celebration

Eileen, I did invite you on my Facebook event page hor! I can do a screenshot to prove it :D

30th Birthday Celebration

Mak, don’t worry about your bitchy self that night. I think my friends kinda looked forward to have you around, and those who don’t, probably deserved it. LOL.

30th Birthday Celebration

Riyan came by complete with his crutches! LOL so cute. And he gave me the cutest present ever :)

30th Birthday Celebration

I got to know Justin through the imfamous AWARE saga rage on Twitter, and we have been friends ever since. This was the first night I met the man himself, and he has a delicious secret up his sleeves, which I think he will reveal when the time is right. For a peak into that, check out his Twitter account!

30th Birthday Celebration

After knowing him for years online, finally Dickson decided to show his face for the first time at my party. Okay, not very much so technically, but just for the record he was the FIRST to arrive… after mistakenly thinking my party starts at 6 p.m. Haha!

30th Birthday Celebration

Terence Cheah, Tony and Terence Leong. I don’t know why they made me squat… and I don’t know why I agreed! It made me look hideous, really.

30th Birthday Celebration

For the first time after years of inviting, Chee Leng finally came for my party. And I hope she didn’t get the shock of her life :)

30th Birthday Celebration

Some of my SMC boys, Lucas and YK. Guys, hope your audition went okay. Sorry for not being able to sit down and chat properly with you two that night!

30th Birthday Celebration

Mark and Charles also came that night. Mark, thanks for your lovely set of a gift, and Charles, thanks for lending a hand at the “bar”!

30th Birthday Celebration

Elki and Willy. I just remembered… I think I have been taking my boas on and off in front of you two, saying it was too hot, for multiple times, didn’t I? LOL.

30th Birthday Celebration

Tess! Thanks for coming! And please send my bollocks to Thomas, Lisa, Daniel et al for not turning up. I demand a make-up dinner when I come back to Singapore next :D

30th Birthday Celebration

Aldo came along with a friend *ahem* LOL. Hope you didn’t feel too uncomfortable that night.

30th Birthday Celebration

Liang Hin came along with Reuben for the first time to my parties. Hope it didn’t shock you guys too much. Liang Hin, I am not too sure about the “people magnet” part, but I will sure do my best in HK. Thanks for your kind words of encouragement :)

30th Birthday Celebration

HOHOHO! I must buy lottery again. The elusive Jinguang actually turned up! Haha… okay, so he stayed for a grand total of five minutes, but that is better than none, right? Thanks dude. I am really happy to see you that night.

30th Birthday Celebration

Ian who will be joining me in HK later than expected. But that’s okay, dude. Late is better than never, and parties in HK never stop!

30th Birthday Celebration

Hey Raffy, thanks for coming. I heard that you just returned from a tiring trip to Germany, so really appreciate you coming by :)

30th Birthday Celebration

Mark and Kitson, the latter who came so late and so drunk that it didn’t take too much time for him to terrorise the rest of the guests. LOL, we all still love you, babe.

And also a shout out to David who came and left early, missing the chance to take a photo. Now… did I miss out anyone?

So the next day, with the help of my maid, we cleaned up the place. I mistakenly thought my flight was at 8 p.m., when it was actually at 7 p.m. So it was mad, mad rush to the airport. And again, the flight was uneventful, until…

Surprise from Singapore Airlines!

HAH! The cake finally arrived in flight, much to the amusement of my fellow passengers. Thanks, Niza, for arranging this.

And that conclude my 30th birthday celebration. Pretty mild, no? Hehe

And people… sorry if I wasn’t able to extend an invitation to you. The planning was very rushed, and since my current place is pretty small, I need to make sure everyone is comfortable, and that it won’t be a nightmare to organise.

Full set of photos on Flickr.

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