30 March 2006

Random Notes

  • No time to blog in constructive manner. But will blog - because helps me relieve stress. It's like saying out loud my problems. I'll feel better even if I say it to a wall.
  • Still in office. Will be in office even later. Work. Is. My. Cancer. I **HATE** cancer.
  • Not feeling as down as yesterday, but still very, very dejected.
  • World is unfair. Nice people always face problem. Evil dictators get away. **Takes off shoes and hit against picture of evil dictator**
  • Still hate premonition. At least let me have to power to do something about whatever problems I 'feel' ahead of time mah. Then only fair. Letting me get premonitions but not letting me do anything is like giving me a drink but not letting me get drunk. No fair.
  • Too much administrative work makes work BORING **Fills in form #32,465, fills in form #32,466 ... **
  • BORING work makes it impossible to absorb oneself in work and feel better / forget anguish
  • Face is red now - it's your fault angel - why send flying kiss? **Catch flying kiss. Keep in Air-Tight bag to seal in freshness**
  • Face is getting redder now - it's your fault pelf - why send virtual hug?
  • I will add che-cheh's link over the weekend.
  • Suddenly, Australia is not even mentioned. **Crosses off Brisbane To-do list**
  • TQ to all who commented/SMSed/chatted. I feel better. I just need more time.
  • I so look forward to my weekend.
Yes, I know. At least I have weekend to look forward to.

29 March 2006


Sometimes, I don't know if I should cry or laugh ....

I want to cry. But the tears wouldn't come,
I want to laugh. But conscience won't let me,
I want to scream. But my voice is no more,
I want to wail. But there is nothing to bemoan,
I want to be strong. But my core feels empty,
I want to give up. But it feels so wrong.

I heard terrible news today. Devastating news, really.

I'm not allowed to say what it is. Or lay down clues. Just can tell you it's not me. Nothing happened to me.

But it's affecting me deeply. I'm feeling drained.

I feel like a deflated tyre all morning. Grinding forward, but not feeling good doing so.

Turned out my premonition is right.

I hate my premonitions. I hate it when I'm right about feelings like these.

Something terrible happened. Not to me. But to someone close. I hate !!! -> Give me premonitions only if it affects me lah ... leave other people out of it !!! I hate !!!

Those were the days ...

If anyone needs any convincing that my job is very unpredictable, here's another bit of evidence for you.

Woi - Pegi Mana?

Earlier, I was told I was headed for Australia for a month. Now that hasn't changed, but today, I was being told that instead of Sydney, I would instead head to Brisbane.

When I had my conversation with my supervisor, my response to that piece of info was a simple "Really? I used to study there ..."

But deep inside me, it was a very different feeling.

Brisbane was my home for nearly 2 years. It was my first trip overseas (there was another trip to Singapore when I was so young I can't remember anything except I travelled there by train, so that doesn't count).

I took a course in Queensland University of Technology, in the Faculty of IT, doing the Bachelor of IT. I majored in Data Communications, which turned out to be a pretty good choice. While I never really worked in a line absolutely related to Data Communications, the background served me well, and my work is never far from touching areas I learnt in Uni.

But was really got me thinking about the old days were the people who surrounded me. And the people who got me there.

Uni was a charm. Living overseas alone is a great experience.

First, the people who got me there.

My Parents

I come from a poor family. My background is not too bad, my dad made enough for us to be comfortable. We had the necessities to get thru the daily grind, but we never had more. Before my trip to Australia, I never had a holiday, except the ones the school organised.

When I went to Uni, it was with the whole-hearted support of the family. My parents made immense sacrifices, for which I am deeply indebted to them - forever - it's a debt I can't hope to repay ever - I hope I'll be able to make them comfortable in their old days.

But back to me, my Uni days were challenging. I had a budget from the start - me and my parents worked out the necessary finances - right down to the last dollar and cent. And that was what I got.

I touched down in Australia with money in the bank for my studies, and living expenses, and that's it.

The first month was difficult. My own college mates from Malaysia abandoned me (or maybe it was the other way. Depends on your point of view, maybe) - I wasn't Chinese enough, you see, I speak English, and I befriended all types and sorts of people. I made friends with a Frenchman, a Taiwan girl, a Singaporean and a Sri Lankan - all on my first day.

I got my accomodation, and moved in to share an apartment at Maryvale Street in Toowong with a Singaporean I barely know. Managing money was a problem. If you have a lump sum in the bank on day 1 and you have to make sure you manage it until you're done with your studies, you sometimes forget how frugal you might have to be - since the sum seems large at the beginning. It's only when you start to look into your finances that you realise - "Shit! Spent too much already !!"

I still reckon my biggest lesson learnt in Brisbane was how to manage a budget and spend wisely. And prioritise.

With the challenging timeline I had, I figured I wouldn't do any part time job, and instead I would just concentrate on my studies. Later, during the later part of my stay when the 97 financial crisis was about to show its teeth, it turned out to be a great decision. I am glad to this day I decided to make my studies a priority and concentrate on it.

I complete my studies just before the exchange rate made the ringgit so low I would have needed to quit and go home. There were all these forex restrictions and my father's already depleted savings was getting further depleted, so I was happy to be wrap up my studies on time with some money to spare =)

Through my times in Brisbane, my parents were a pillar of strenght. They kept me going during the tough times, kept the troubles back home from me to not distract me and reminded me of the bigger picture when I got into lows.

Now the people who I spent a lot of time with in Brisbane:

The Friends

Here's an oddity. In the pictures you've seen - except me, everyone else is a Singaporean. I was practically surrounded by Singaporeans. But I felt totally at home - maybe it's the people, and not the nationality. As long as you get on, you get on. Where you come from has very little to do with how well you get on.

I moved into my first apartment in Australia with a Singaporean whom I barely knew. It turned out to be a great decision.

I learnt how to live with people. And make new friends in strange new settings. And accept new cultures and ideas. It opened up my mind.

The guys were great - we had cookouts on weekends - I would normally do the cooking, and they would do the cleaning up thereafter. Yeah, we had disasters in the kitchen, but always emerged with humour. Burnt out chicken? Let's call a pizza.

I never had any disagreements of large magnitudes with these guys. We had many trips together to a great many places - Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast and - still a highlight of my life - a road trip along the Queensland Coast of Australia, where we drove for days, and enjoyed the breath-taking beauty of Australia.

I did make many other friends in Uni, but this was the closest bunch, my gang. I sure miss them.

Unfortunately for me, after my Uni, I lost touch with - believe it or not - every one of these folks. I actually only have 1 contact from my Uni, and that too because he's working in the same company as I do.

Hopefully, with the wonders of Internet, I might one day re-establish contact with them.

Mission: Incomplete

As for my work assignment in Brisbane, I'd like to take the opportunity to finish some incomplete tasks - stuff I wanted to do in Brisbane I never got to do, due to my lack of funds, or because I just couldn't or because I plain didn't care then :

* Properly get to know the city - You may be surprised to know that I avoided some parts of the city, like the Eagle Street Pier, because I didn't really fit in. I had shabby clothes then, and never had an interest in the cafe lifestyle.

* Walk across the Story Bridge - me and Ken Leong attempted it and we both chickened out when we looked down and saw that sheer drop. I'll do it this time. Moz not chicken anymore.

* Do rock climbing at Kangaroo Point - it was just across the Brisbane River from the QUT Gardens Point Campus, but I never did this due to lack of fund and lack of sense of adventure.

* Get myself a QUT sweater - lack of funds. Couldn't afford to buy even a SINGLE souvenir from QUT except a Kangaroo soft toy for an ex-girlfriend.

* Take a lot of pictures - believe it or not, young readers, there was a time when digital cameras have not been invented, when we had to take photos in rolls of 36 exposure films. What it means to a student on a budget like me is that I was very economical with my photos, and I regretted it. I'm going to rectify that this time =)

* Visit Milton's Park Road - Park Road in the suburb of Milton is where we call "Little Paris" - there's a replica of the Eiffel Tower there, and it's a place dotted with cafes and alfresco dining. It's probably the most happening place in Brisbane after sunset. I wonder if the Ferrari that was always parked outside one of the cafes is still around ... ? Hmm ... maybe not. But this time, I'll be able to afford dining in ANY of the establishments there ... hmpph ... no more dirty looks because I wore shabby clothes.

* Visit Mt. Coot-tha again - ever stood out in -3 celcius air wearing only a T-Shirt? I did. A girl dared me and I stood out in the cold, leaving the comfort of the car that brought us up Mt. Coot-tha, believing I could impress her. Never did find out what she thought. Brisbane has a very mild winter, but at night, on a hill, with the windchill, it's perfectly possible for -3 celcius temperatures.

* Appreciate the Botanical Gardens - I never thought much of the Brisbane Botanical Gardens - it's just a park next to the Uni. Maybe there's more to it. I'll at least revisit it. And the Kidney Lawn in front of the Old Government House.

* Visit Moreton Bay - never did visit this place, although it was practically in Brisbane itself.

And perhaps many more ... I can go ballistic with the listing, but let's just see how things work out. I might be so swamped with work they'll be no time for play. Let's hope not, but I don't wanna get myself all worked up and later get deflated when I can't complete my mission.

Now. Let's just hope my supervisor won't tell me later that it's switched to some other place. Because that's a possibility where I work.

28 March 2006

Top Ten Water Odour Excuses

By now, it should be common knowledge that the water in Klang Valley is supposed to be safe. Yeah, it doesn't smell right, but you don't really have a choice, you know. Maybe if you make coffee with it, you won't smell it anymore. Or you buy mineral water loh ....

Anyways, I remain unconvinced. I'm installing water filters at my place just in case. Something in the water is causing the odour, and unless I'm really convinced that something in there is no dangerous, it's a big ask for me to trust that water.

I just hope they would clarify what that odour really is instead of pointing fingers in every known direction and stating what's NOT in the water. I'm dying to know what's IN the water.

Anyways, just for laughs, I'm made up the Top Ten Water Odour Excuses list ..

  • To prevent corrosion at the water pipes, we coated them with M&M’s. It's cheaper.
  • Water Filter guy can't get to work lately because oil price increase made it impossibly expensive to drive to work. And there's no buses where the water plant it.
  • “Wait a minute – you mean we're supposed to filter off that smell? Hold a sec ... ” **Frantically makes call to water processing plant ...**
  • You have to upgrade to the XP version with SP2 …ooops … that’s for Moz’s laptop problems instead.

  • “It’s really nothing. We just decided to put some funny smell into the water so that those guys who put tap water into mineral water bottles and try and sell them to you can’t do that no more.”
  • You’re supposed to spray perfume in the water if you want it to smell good.
  • It's just the smell of the good bacteria that we've put in there. You know, like, the good bacteria in Vitagen?
  • We regret to inform you that you’ll only get the odour-less version once we increase the water tariff by 20%. But, hey, but our water is still the cheapest in the region.
  • We’re really sorry for the odour problem. We recently discovered that Bigfoot had been taking showers at our water processing facilities.
  • It’s the runoff from those chemical laced water canons they shot at the demonstrators at those oil price hike demonstrations. The water’s safe. Really.

Hacking Attempt. Still Worried. Safe Water?

This is not going to be the usual Moz Monster blog entry ...

It appears that someone had been trying to gain control of my blog by hacking.

I received an email earlier today - the sort you get when you indicate you've lost your password and you need a new one. So someone has claimed to be moz monster and decided to get a new password ... maybe because repeated attempts to gain entry didn't work.

Wei ... come one lah ... I did Data Communications in Uni lah ... I took so many subjects that preached the need for having secure passwords. My password is not that easy to compromise lor. Try harder, please.

*** Still damn worried ***

I withdrew an entry I put yesterday on this blog - the one which claimed I'm feeling a premonition that something is about to go wrong.

A special concoction of alcoholic drinks conjured up at the spur of the moment helped. I know, I'm again breaking my long standing alcohol ban, but desperate times call for desperate measures.

All I can remember was that the special brew had a little of everyone I know in there. There's a little bit of Jim Bean, a dash of Smirnoff, Bacardi showed up, Mr. Carlsberg did appear and there was even a guest appearance from my old friend Hennessy. It was a very crowded drink. =)

And I recall a very, very, nice sleep. Woke up this morning to still a little bit of premonition that someone would go wrong, but heck, if it's going to go wrong anyways, then I don't want to worry about it now. Let it happen - I'll deal with it when it comes.

*** Of course, the water IS safe ***

The front page of a leading English daily claimed that despite the odour, out piped water supply in the Klang Valley IS SAFE. You smart people who can find this blog would most likely be able to find that article on the web without the help of a link, thus there is none here.

Ok. Let's do chemical 101 here real quick.

Pure water is odourless. It has no smell.

If there is odour in the water, there is something in the water that brought about the odour.

Instead of telling us what's in that water, the smokescreen strategy is to tell us what's NOT in the water.

Yes, sure, there's no heavy metal. The water is not heavy. The water is very close to neutral pH. Does that make the water SAFE?

Unless someone can actually tell me what in the water causes the smell, I don't think I can really feel secure about our water supply.

Heck, you put some herbicide into the water - now test it for heavy metal. Test it for turbidity. It might just turn up negative. Heck, who knows, it might not cause water acidity. I'm not a chemist, but I think the tests haven't done anything to convince me totally that I'm not going to die 20 years later from drinking all these pipe water.

On a separate note, if you read the OTHER leading English daily in Malaysia from yesterday, you would have seen that there's a very terse article about our looming water supply problem.

We must be getting awfully close to developed nation status - who else would have problems with water supply problems due to over development and improper water resource management?

If all we care about is how soon we become developed and forget the fact that the goal of the development itself was to ensure a better life for the rakyat, I guess I'm hoping for less development.

I don't see the point of having the world's tallest twin towers when soon, water will no longer be a readily available resource. Hmm ... must be our system of priorities.

~~~ End of Rant ~~~

OK. Nothing else to say. But still damn worried ... still have a feeling that something VERY wrong will happen soon. Wonder what that could be?

26 March 2006

Top Ten Signs You're On A Bad Holiday

Alright, I know ... it's that time of the year ... MAS travel fair not too long ago, MATTA fair about now (I think), so there are plenty of people who have bought holiday packages and are now raring to go.

After all, it's really necessary to go for holidays now in today's pressure cooker world. If I don't have a job that requires all this travelling, I would be taking 200 days off every year. Really.

But how many of us come back from our travel to faraway land happy all the time? Not all. There's definately an element of luck to our holidays. Sometimes it's just not meant to be. Sometimes it's the little things like the food on a particular day, or an a**hole guide leaving you stranded in the middle of nowhere. Sometimes it's more disasterous - you loose your baggage or you arrived in a beach resort only to find it's hurricane season.

Well, the Moz Monster public service top ten series continues with the Top Ten Signs You're On A Bad Holiday ...

  • "Oh, we ran out of taxis and vans, so that's why we're taking you to the hotel in an ambulance"
  • Your homestay program was with a wanted JI fugutive running away from the authorities.
  • "What do you mean Bali? You're not in Bali sir, this is Guantanamo Bay ... "
  • The luxurious picnic you were promised turned out to be a McDonald's Happy Meal and a pack of Cheezels.
  • Before the start of your city tour, you have to wear your bullet proof vest, and fill up a responsibility waiver form.
  • When you ask the hotel to bring you some hot water, the room service guy turns up with a kettle, a stack of old newspaper and a magnifying glass.
  • "Yeah, this was a national park 20 years ago. Then they turned it into the world's largest open air landfill - we now dump everything here. Say ... you didn't drive for 3 days and 2 nights just to get HERE, did ya ?"
  • The travel agency didn't tell you that the budget airline you were taking had no landing rights at your destination, which meant that you have to jump off the plane on a parachute.
  • The "infinity pool" mentioned in the hotel brochure is really the fountain in the shopping center next door.
  • Your tour guide turns in a Catwoman costume, whips you everytime you try to stray off the tour route and insists you call her Mistress.
And there you have it ... the signs that you're on a holiday gone wrong =)

24 March 2006

Mozzie does Aussie

My dream of completing a project in Malaysia might get dashed again ... I've just received my Australia visa - I've been told I'll be going to Australia for a month.

Where I work, being assigned to some place for a month is really their way of saying ... "Let's send you there for a year". None of my projects close in a month. They always take more.

Anyways, you can look it both ways - I must be somewhat good when of all people, I always get seconded to go for overseas assignment. On the other hand, some might think I'm not wanted here, so the bosses are willing to send me overseas. Whichever it is, I don't really care - I just want to do my work.

Oh well, anyone in Sydney I can look up? I can instantly think up 2 names ... well, maybe I'll meet a hot Australian babe. Who knows?

23 March 2006

The real A is attitude

"Don't be down hearted. No one gets success all the time. No one will win all the time."

My nephew cousin didn't do too well in STPM. Obviously he didn't feel too good either. I don't have answers for all the problems in the world, and I don't have consolations for all the people who come to me for a shoulder to cry on.

The real A in life is the one in Attitude. It will carry you through the challenges. It will perk you up when you're down.

Bill Gates never finished his uni. Yet look at him now. Look at Uncle Lim in Genting - he can hardly speak English.

Just keep your chin up. Life has many ways of throwing surprises your way.

I'm not a good example myself, I didn't make it into local uni. I had to venture overseas. And it cost my dad a bomb. But I guess I managed to make hay while the sun shined =)

Whether you mope all your life or you smile even during the hardest times, you still have to live it. Might as well be happy going thru life.

Failure is not when you don't pass your exams. Exams are not a measure of a person's success - they simply measure academic acumen. Exams don't define character; it does not guarantee success. Exams don't make you rich, failing them won't make you poor. Success is a journey you travel all your life.

And why be afraid of failure? It's another opportunity to learn what is NOT successful, which means you get closer to being successful in the first place.

You - your attitude towards life - your character when faced with challenges - will ultimately decide your success. And don't forget that pinch of luck too =)

Take it easy. The real A in life is the one in Attitude. See the silver lining in everything.

Top Ten Things I Learnt At Work

It's the 8th year working anniversary special !!!

8 years ago, on this day, I joined the incoming tax payer's roll workforce, becoming a web consultant / programmer for a local company called CyberTouch. And it's been 8 years, 2 jobs, 6 titles, 13 countries (14 next month) and countless sleepless nights since then.

I don't wish my work on you. It's low paying, morale-sapping and energy-consuming. If you're like me, the guys don't respect you, the girls don't wanna date you, their parent's gossip about your lack of life. Yeah, it's that bad, believe me.

However, it's always true when they say that you'll learn something from even the shittiest job. At the very least, you'll learn that it's shitty, right? I had my fair share of lessons learnt, and in hoping some people will learn something about work, here are the Top Ten Things I Learnt At Work.

  • When I take my time, I'm slow and inefficient. When my boss takes his time, he's being deliberate and careful.
  • When the bosses are seen rolling on the floor with laughter, you can safely assume your request for a raise had been denied.
  • "And other responsibilities" on your task list normally means doing everything else the boss should have done, but just too lazy to do.
  • Shut up when you have a good idea at work. Otherwise, you'll have to carry out the idea.
  • Don't ever volunteer to make coffee. If you make 'em good - you'll have to keep making 'em as long as you stay. If you make 'em bad, you would have to buy Starbucks to make up. You'll always lose.
  • "Requires flexible working hours" really means you have to give up on having a life.
  • When interviewing for a new job, it's always helpful to be awake, not asleep.
  • When people say "You pay peanuts, you get monkeys", they're not being entirely truthful. Normall, people pay peanuts and expect a donkey instead.
  • When my boss tells me I'm going to die, he's demonstrating good leadership. When he lets me choose how to die, he's empowering me.
  • The pay is inversely proportional to your knowledge. The more you know, the less you're paid. Just notice how often our bosses say "I don't know", "Maybe yes, maybe no", "I have to check that" and "No comments" ?
So, the little boys and girls who're nearly ready to join the workforce ... beware the pitfalls of working !!

Hehe ... these are MY lessons anyways. You might have your own you wanna add. Feel free to do so ..


On a more personal note ... here are people I'd like to thank for their amazing help towards my professional growth. You might never get to read this blog, and even if you do, you might not recognize its me, and you might not realise you're being acknowledged, but I had to get it out somewhere ... and in NO particular order ...

- Dr Cuong - Simply the best techie I've ever had the pleasure of knowing
- Wong Sifu - The most important influence in my first 3 years working
- Taiko Tang - For making me realise shit does happen, and the best thing to do is to deal with it
- Anil - Mentor with a sense of homour - what more can I ask?
- DP - Elvis is in da house !! Don't think I dunno you've been quietly supporting me
- Saqib - Best buddy to have when you need to troubleshoot something. Anything
- Dee - Technically, you worked FOR me. But the lessons I learnt from you ... man ... you're GOOD
- Tom Rumph - If ever I can have a boss for live, I'll want you. Not sure if you want me as your charge, though

Can't imagine a better 8 years working than I've had. My life may be a mess, but it's sure a fun mess. I've had NO regrets, and I look forward to the next 8 years of challenge and hopefully, growth.

22 March 2006

My new ba-beeee

Men like metal things. Cars. Gadgets. Watches.

Since this month marked my 8th year working, I decided to splurge and buy myself something. Boost ego a bit lah ... make myself feel like I can afford things like these ... after all, I've been buying a lot of things not for myself, but for the family, so it's time to do something for Moz ...

Introducing the latest ba-beeee in my fami-leeee .... the Tag Heuer F1 Chronotimer. Bought this at a booth in KLCC.

It's called the Chronotimer because it has digital and analog functions - yeah !!! The digital functions includes the time (seen above), perpetual calendar, countdown timer, 2nd time zone time, split timer and chronograph.

But the old watch, of course ... nothing wrong with it ... I'll still wear it. See ... they two get along well, the old and the new ... see? The two get along well.

But this ba-beeee looks good, don't it?

21 March 2006

Identity Crisis My FOOT !!!

Ok, those of you who have not seen an angry monster, here's your chance. I'm directing this blog to all you people out there who claim to have an "Identity Crisis" ...

I don't have a single problem with those of you who claim to be bananas - you know, yellow on the outside and all white on the inside - but I have a problem with some of you who're actually ASHAMED to be even yellow on the outside or want to be in a different shade of yellow.

I had a conversation with someone I knew from a previous job ...

Moz: Wei ... wah ... nice hair. You look a little ... Japanese?
Idiot: Yeah, too bad only the hair looks Japanese.
Moz: ???
Idiot: You know, I wish I wasn't born a Chinese. I wish I'm Japanese.
Moz: WTF ????

OK. I'm bloody proud to be a Malaysian Chinese.

First I'm a Malaysian - despite all the Boleh-land jokes, despite the inefficiencies, despite the frustrations I feel sometimes, my Malaysian identity is unshaken. I promote Malaysia when I go abroad, which is why I'm sometimes so busy hosting foreign friends. Unlike some people who say nasty things about Malaysia to foreigners, I do the opposite - I say nice things - I tell them about the forests, the cultural diversity, the food, the islands, the people and the other attractions.

True, I do tell people about the traffice problem we face, but who doesn't? I do discuss our shortcomings, but which country doesn't have problems to overcome anyways? I love Malaysia all the same. I'm a Malaysian all the same. And damn proud too.

Second, by bloodline, I'm Chinese. And bloody proud as well.

What's not to be proud of being a member of the longest surviving civilization in the world? Aren't you proud someone of your ehtnic background invented paper, printing press, the compass, an earthquake detector, gunpowder, the abacus and countless inventions that have since left an indelible print on the global population at large?

Aren't you proud to be from the same group of people who thousands of years ago, created accupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine?

Remember Feng Shui? Or that the Chinese were a driving force in trading in the past centuries and will again be a major global economic force?

Enough of all that. Even if I were from an ethnic group that had none of these 'achievements' - why should I want to be someone else? I'll still want to be who I am.

You can pretend. You can put on that wig, fashion your hair in a particular way, dress up with a certain look. But you sure ain't fooling yourself. You are who you are.

Due to the upbringing some of us Malaysian Chinese had, some of us can't speak and/or write Chinese. That's fine. We still carry our Chinese names. And many nowadays make an effort to learn up the language, with an eye on China becoming the next global trading giant.

Hell, I'm was a banana due to my upbringing ... I went to a National School, thus never really learnt my Chinese. However, providence had it that I would end up with many friends from Chinese Schools in my college days. That followed by me working in Taiwan for a year and now working with many people from China, Hong Kong and Taiwan too.

Guess how I learnt my Chinese? I memorize song lyrics, then I wrote down those lyrics on leftover excersice books from my secondary school days. I still have those to show. I still can't really read everything off a newspaper yet, but I can hold my own conversation in Taiwan and China, and I can read most of the road signs there.

Learning chinese opened my eyes to the rich culture and history my ancestors originated from. It enriched my understanding of my own identity. I can read the rich chinese literatures such as Journey to the West, Dream of Red Mansion and Water Margin, albeit with some difficulty, in the original language. The nuances in these rich books are lost in translation ...

This same friend, in the same conversation ...

Idiot: You know, next time, don't call me by my Chinese Name anymore
Moz: ??? What to call you then? Surely I still need to call you Abraham Tee* (not his real name)
Idiot: No. Don't use that name. I'm not Akahashi Talaotak (or some funny Japanese name)
Moz: WTF??!! This is so not funny ... is this your new image or what ... ?
Idiot: No. Even my parents have to call me that, otherwise I'm not responding ...

Your parents might as well disown you. It's one thing to be a banana, sometimes it's not even your fault. It's another thing to want to be a Japanese, Korean, American, whatever .... you can't lie to yourself. And let me ask you anyways, have you ever been to Japan? And lived the life they live? Do you have any idea what you're buying into anyways?

It's always greener on the other side, stupid !

You just don't see that it's not an identity crisis you're having, don't you? You have a problem bigger than that ... you literally turned your back on who you are.

* I apologize to anyone who might feel offended by this entry - the intention here is not to criticise anyone who considers themselves to be 'banana'. The intention here is to criticise those who don't even want to admit their Chinese or Asian heritage*

20 March 2006

If I had a million dollars (Optimistic Edition)

I was told by Pelf that my previous entry, If I had a million dollars, was a bit pessimistic. I read the entry again, and yeah, I'd agree it could be brighter.

So here I am ... fantasizing about my spending my million dollars ...

- Again, it's gotta be one million US mullahs. Else we're not even gonna dream very long.

- First off, I'm buying myself a Datuk-ship. That will instantly pave the way for me to be appointed to the Board of Director in some company, where they pay me tonnes of money for very little work in return.

- With my financial future secured, I'll leave it all behind and travel around the world. First class, no more backpacking.

- First stop is Shanghai, where I would use my datukship to open new factories in China with some local joint-venture. My factories make branded sports shoes, which are sold to Malaysians at 10 times the cost price =)

- At the same time, I would open a call center outsourcing company in India, in Bombay (Mumbai). I'll hire english speaking Indians for a fraction of the cost and run a tech help desk for large MNCs in India.

- Because I'm so filthy rich after my factory and outsourcing ventures, half of all the Shanghai women and all the Bollywood actresses were knocking down my door. Not able to stand such pressure, I sold off my factories and outsourcing company for a handsome profit, and flew off to Korea.

- In Korea, I met and fell in love with a doctorate student. We got married after a brief courtship, and I started a nasi lemak franchise in Korea that made me even richer.

- Mrs Moz Monster discovered an effective, permanent weight lost medication that had no side effects, except it gave dark skin a fairer complexion. Soon, we both became the richest people in Asia.

- My nasi lemak franchise was bought over by McDonald's, and I was made a director there. We moved to US of A.

- The Missus' miracle medication became the hit product of the 21st century - and after a while we became like one of the top ten richest people on earth.

- We moved into Warren Buffet's neighbourhood, and also became friends with Bill Gates. Warren was impressed with my business savvy and decided to teach me everything he knows about investing. As a fast learner, I took to investing like a duck taking to the water.

- Bill got impressed by my technical skills that I have acquired through my years working in Malaysia. Thinking that all Malaysians would be this good, he decided to move many of his technical support centers from India to Malaysia. Just like that, Moz create 20,000 new jobs in Malaysia.

- Moz gets Tan Sri-ship due to 20,000 new jobs.

- By then, the world was ripe for another economic crisis. But no worries, Moz, having learnt all of Warren's investment savvy, was able to make money from the crisis, and emerged richer still.

- Soon, Mr and Mrs Moz became the richest people in the world. Moz would buy all the oil wells in the Middle East, and Mrs. Moz all the oil wells in South America. Our child Small Moz would buy the rest of the oil wells. Now the Moz family has an oil monopoly all over the world.

- Moz, now controlling all the oil wealth in the world, decided to subsidise all petrol sold in Malaysia ... you, the lucky rakyat, pay only RM 1 per liter. Suddenly, RM1.80 noddles, RM0.50 milo and RM0.45 teh tarik became available again to the suffering people.

- Now with a all the world's oil under my control, I would negotiate an end to all the terrorist activities. US soldiers pack up and leave wherever they were occupying. Al Qaeda starts to run community programs, such as Industri Keropok Desa. Israel and Palestine recognized each other and decided to live together in peace.

- Eventually, the planet was called Mozilla (Muzillah in Malay) instead of Earth.

Happy, pelf? =)

- Oh, yes. I'd adopt all the terrapins in the world too who aren't adopted already. =)

I still think the pessimistic version is funnier.

19 March 2006

If I had a million dollars

It's like a fantasy ... what would you do if you have a million dollars? I had a conversation today with a friend about this topic, and we were a little boring ... you know, a million USD is great, but a million ringgit is nothing. It won't even buy you a decent mansion.

Anyways, now I'm home, I had sometime to think about this, so here goes ...

- It's gotta a million USD first and foremost. Else this fantasy disappears.

- I'm so going to quit my job to travel the world on backpacks, now that my money worries are behind me.

- I'm going to meet a beautiful Japanese girl travelling the world while I'm backpacking in China. We'll fall madly in love. Decided to backpack together for the next 2 months in China.

- We'll travel to Tokyo next where I got rejected by her conservative parents, despite my 2 month long attempt to win over them. So I leave for Korea next.

- In Korea, I fell in love with a Korean girl, without knowing she's dying from some incurable disease (this is SO Korean drama-ish). I found that out eventually, and I stayed on for a while, tried to cheer her up, but she ended up dying in my arms on a beautiful autumn day in a field of magnolia blossoms while we were having picnic. *tsk tsk*

- Broken hearted, Moz decided to fly to Hawaii. Here he lived a peaceful existance for a few months, patching is broken heart.

- Recovered, Moz flies to South America where he met a tribal girl called Pocahantus. There was always some attraction, but the threat of a poison dart landing in his ass compliments of Pocahantus' dad, Chief Lubricated Sheep, freaked Moz out.

- Moved on to US of A for a 9 month trek across the country. By this time, I'm pretty unkempt and unshaven. Mistaking me for Forrest Gump, people started following me on my jogs, only to realise after 2 months I'm just a fat Asian dude. Thus they deserted me. In the middle of Nevada.

- Hitch-hiked and was picked up by Orlando Bloom, who took me to New York. And introduced me to Richard Gere.

- Joined Richard on a meditation retreat in Tibet, where I met the Dalai Lama, who proclaimed me as "Moz the Messed up 3rd eye chakra dude". Got into a love triangle between Richard Gere, me and a lovely Tibetan girl. Unable to match Richard's charming good looks, I lost out.

- Went to the Middle East, where I was called "Muzillah Mun-Sadr" by the locals. Started making connections with the oil barons in the region. Stayed for a few years until my camels were stolen by some al-Qaeda operatives in the middle of a desert sand storm.

- Freaked out, I leave the Middle East to come home to Malaysia.

- With oil prices having increased by RM1.20 since I left, I came back ridden with debt. The million bucks is worth nothing ...

*Sigh* ... I can't even fantasize ....

Commenwealth Games: Events that Malaysia Would Win If They Ever Exist In the First Place ...

Driving past the Bukit Jalil Commonwealth Games complex today, I thought of the time when Malaysia was hosting the Commonwealth Games. It wasn't all that long - just about 8 years ago.

The roar had died down, the stadiums have since stopped become a novelty and turned into concert venues. Quite a bit has changed.

But enough about the sentimental stuff - I was actually thinking about some pretty big what if's ... what would have been some events that Malaysians would probably be winning if the events even existed at all.

Here are some pickings:

Pack and Run
You have to pack a bag full with goods (CDs, DVDs, watches, t-shirts, etc), close the bag properly, then run 500 meters with the bag. Whoever records the shortest time wins.

You can't drop the bag or drop the goods in the bag.

How come Malaysians would win this: Petaling Street, SS2, Your Local Night Market - all these places are a potent breeding ground for talented individuals in this event (i.e. pirated goods peddler). They get regular practice - everytime enforcement officers turn up, the peddlers will have to pack and run helter skelter for their lifes. No wonder most peddlers look trim and fit.

Potential Competition: Hong Kong has Temple Street and other street markets as well, so they won't do too badly.

Rubbish Throwing
You have to throw small pieces of rubbish on a busy street without getting spotted. Things like cigarrette butt, pieces of paper, food wrapper and unwanted receipts are all valid objects you can throw.

There will be 3 judges walking up and down the street looking out for contestants who throw rubbish. Once spotted, you lose. The last contestant to be spotted wins.

How come Malaysians would win this: Malaysians are born with an allergy to the rubbish bin. We can't throw rubbish where we should - but the law won't allow that - the law says we've got to dispose rubbish properly. So how? Throw and make a selamba face lah ... pretend all is well ... divert attention away by looking in one direction and throwing in another ... put rubbish in a clenched fist next to hand and simply let go while walking ... we know all the tricks, man.

Potential Competition: No real threat from other countries because unlike Malaysians, allergy to rubbish bin is highly unusual.

Missing the pee target
This is a men's only event - not because it's sexist - just because ... hey ... you REALLY don't know? Maybe you shouldn't be reading this blog then ...

OK, the idea is to pee and miss the target real badly. And you have to actually TRY to hit the target.

How come Malaysians would win this: No scientific explanation. Heck, there's no real explanation. But the state of our public toilets would suggest we're a nation that have trouble hitting the target.

Potential Competition: Again, we're waaaay ahead in this department. No sweat. We can almost send just about anyone who has a MyKad and will probably come back with a Gold Medal.

Buffet Food Hogging
In this event, a buffet spread is set up. There will be many dishes, but only limited plates. The objective is to grab as much food as possible onto a single plate, then run back to a table 10 meters away, put down that plate, run back to the buffet table, pick up another plate and repeat the whole routine again and again.

The event stops when either food has run out, or there are no more plates.

Winner is the one with the most food collected.

How come Malaysians would win this: Chinese New Year. Hari Raya. Christmas. Deepavali. Public Listed Companies' AGM. These are just some of the occassions when Malaysians hold the time-honored tradition of open houses where the rakyat gets to practice Food Hogging. Since practice makes perfect, Malaysians are amongst the best in the world when it comes to food hogging.

Potential Competitor: Our neighbours in the south, Singapore, would likely give us a good fight. They too, have open houses and plenty of AGMs to practice hogging with. This will be an interesting battle.

Last Minute Shopping
The competition is to buy one item (randomly picked just before the competition starts) as late as possible from a department store.

For example, you may be asked to buy a packet of instant noodle from Jaya Jusco. The idea is to be the last contestant to pay just before the counter closes. For the purpose of the competition only, the counter will close exactly at the end of the working hours.

This is a very tricky event - buy too early and you miss the point, buy too late and the item maybe sold out or the counter is closed. The idea is to take it with you, and hang around the counter until it's nearly closing them, then rush to pay all at once.

How come Malaysians would win this: The MyKad fiasco. The annual Income Tax form submission. The annual CNY, Hari Raya and Christmas shopping rush. Malaysians are the kings as far as procrastination is concerned. Don't believe me? Look around the blogosphere - see how many Malaysian bloggers list procrastination as a habit, hobby or profession?

Potential Competitor: None identified yet. Most countries do have procrastinator, but not in the numbers we do. Americans do this too, but they aren't in the Commonwealth Games.

Here's one we're absolutely good at. It's very simple, really.

You actually have to cross a busy, 4-lane road with heavy traffic in both directions in as little time as possible without getting killed.

How come Malaysians would win this: You kidding me? What makes you think we WON'T win it? We're like the Maharaja of jaywalking - people actually wonder out loud why overhead pedestrian bridges are built in Malaysia. Or for that matter, why we even waste paint making all those zebra crossings.

Potential Competitor: Indians too jaywalk a lot. But their traffic is slower, and less lethal, thus they aren't as quick on their toes as we are. We'd probably win 9 times out of 10.

Messiest Room
This is self-explanatory. Room that is messiest will win.

Scoring is rather subjective - it's really up to the judges who score it - but there are some rule of thumbs. It helps if you don't clean a room for a long period (ie from the day you occupy it). It helps if you don't understand the concept of storage. You get points for not keeping you clothes in the proper place. Existance of ant colonies is a big bonus. If rats roam the room, you almost certainly get many bonus points.

How come Malaysians would win this: Because Moz is a Malaysian !!!

Potential Competitor: No sweat lah ... this one I sure win one !!

Haha ... OK ... if only we had events like these, I'm sure the viewership of the Commonwealth Games would be higher, and Malaysia's medal tally much, much higher.

18 March 2006

Top Ten Rejected Ideas to Spend RM4.4b

RM4.4b is a lot of money to save, spend or waste. Hell, if someone gave me 4.4 billion pieces of RM1 note, I'd probably take forever to count it (picture Scrooge McDuck jumping into a sea of cash).

If someone handed me RM4.4b, what I'd probably do would be to change it all into 10 cent coins, keep it for a week or two, then convert it all into RM1 notes, then keep it for another few weeks, then convert it into RM5 notes. I'd really like to see how much room all that money really needs.

Anyways, while our government has already pledged to create a trust fund to place the RM4.4b savings and channel it into public transportation, which is a pretty smart thing to do (whether they were sincerely wanting to use this money to improve public transportation or not in the first place is another issue), most probably didn't realise that some very bad ideas on how to spend it had been brought up before ... here are just the Top Ten Rejected Ideas to Spend RM4.4b ...

  • RM4.4b should be enough money to create an exclusive city for politicians called Bolehjaya.
  • Well, surely the money could be spent subsidising all the overseas lawatan sambil belajar trips. Right?
  • Let's use the money to buy up all the chicken, duck and poultry in the country to totally prevent bird flu from happening.
  • Invest heavily in R&D to help Proton overcome power window failure and breakage problems.
  • Free 100 Plus, Teh Tarik and Kopi O at all the LRT stations for the next 10 years to attract more public transportati ... wait a bit ... this isn't such a bad idea, right people?
  • Great!! Now we have money to dress all the policeman and policewoman in Italian suits !
  • "Itu 4 billion ringgit, saya cadangkan jugalah supaya kita boleh guna untuk binakan plaza plaza tol dirata-rata tempat juga. Sekarang, kita mana-mana pun boleh letak itu tol juga" - You-Know-Who (He Who Loves Tolls)
  • Free Lionel Richie concert tickets for every Malaysian - I mean do you guys actually know how expensive one of those tickets are?
  • Remember the Lebanese 'billionaire' Najim? He desperately needs a loan to pay the USD 1b pledge to the National Cancer Foundation.
  • Starting from 2007, all teh tarik will enjoy a 30 sen subsidy per glass.
Who really comes up with ideas like these anyway? Some of them are downright absurd ... but I don't mind subsidised teh tarik, though.

Thank everything good in life the ideas were all thrown out.

16 March 2006

Away for the day ...

Ok - look people - before you start demonstrating in front of my house, or burn down effigies in my image - I'm not turning this into a photo blog. And even if I did, what talk you? March is a very busy month in terms of work, so I'm making do with photos sometimes.

I'll be in a meeting all day today, and won't have any means of Internet access until I reach Changi Airport later at night ... I'm in Singapore on business.

To keep you restless souls occupied, here's a photo I recovered from my external hard drive ...

This is a photo of Wat Phra Keow - Temple of the Emerald Buddha, located in the grounds of the Royal Palace in Bangkok, Thailand taken at night. The light trail was purely chance - it's from a passing bus. Nearly couldn't get this shot since I didn't have a tripod with me - so I put my camera on a post box as a stand.

Wat Phra Keow was a former Royal Chapel now open to the public. The main temple (blue roof building on the left side) houses a jade (not emerald) Buddha figurine supposed to have magical properties. This Buddha is the most important in all of Thailand.

The Thais do pray there - it's a working temple, so it does get very crowded. If you have to only see one cultural sight in Thailand, this has to be it. If you have shortness of breath, don't go - this place literally takes your breath away.

Hope you guys will like it =)

15 March 2006

Ayuthaya ... pictures revisited

Yesterday when I Yahoo! chatted with angel, I told her that my first priority would be to revive my external hard disk that had dieded on me for some weeks now.

I managed to do that, and boy, was I glad I managed to unearth my Ayuthaya pictures ...

Ayuthaya is my favorite place in Thailand, contrary to wild, baseless rumors claiming that my fav place is Soi Cowboy instead. Soi Cowboy is so not my fav place. Leave your address with me so that my lawyers can take you to the cleaners for slander if you still insist it is ...

Close up of a facade on Phukao Thong, the Central Chedi.

An ancient city that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is peppered with ancient Thai Buddhist temples in a very laid back city. It was the former capital of Siam (now Thailand) until the Burmese sacked the city after a long siege in the 1700s.

Evidence of a grand past is all over the city. There's actually a roundabout in the middle of town that is an old ancient temple. Imagine Malaysia having a roundabout with A Famosa in the middle - that's what I'm talking about.

Here are some of the pictures I would like to share all over again with my imaginary readers ... and yeah, I welcome comments regarding the photos ...

Observant folks would have realised the addition of a flickr badge on the side bar. Well, feel free to browse through my photos.

They make me miss my Bangkok friends all over again ... Khun Dee, K Surin and Mrs. Surin ... *tsk* .. miss you folks

You want peace? Here we have a sandstone Buddha head wrapped in a Bodhi tree root ... most of the Buddhas in the temple ruins had their heads pilfered by profiteers or invading armies of the past ... this one must have dropped into the lap of the tree and just ... fell asleep ... how peaceful ..

Two Buddhas meditating in Wat Wattanaram .. this is an odd temple - it is not Thai Ayuthaya styled, but Khmer styled. What's the difference? In a nutshell - Ayuthaya is a grand style found in Thailand, while Khmer styled temples are the ones that are reminscene of those in Angkor Wat.

And this .. is one of the enduring images of Thailand, the reclining Buddha at Wat Yai Chai (Big Chedi Temple). Originally housed in a temple, the roof and most walls have collapsed - only the columns stand the test of time.

This is a black and white shot of one of the two Buddhas flanking the Big Chedi itself ...

And finally, another shot that invokes peace within ... a rare feeling in a heart often caught up with the stressful corporate and city living ...

14 March 2006

What a narrow mind we sometimes have ...

I am on leave today, thus I did some roaming around a pretty big book store in a pretty big shopping complex.

I was seated in one corner, browsing a travel guide on China, when a couple caught my attention ...

They were very obviously looking for a Europe Travel Guides ... maybe they were going to visit Europe soon.

Handsome: "Eh ... here leh ... all the travel books"
Pretty: "Hor, yah hor ...."
Handsome: "But ... but how come all America only ?" *tilts neck to look at books*
Pretty: *Tilts her neck also* ... *pauses* .... *pouts*
Pretty: "Yah lor ... where the @#$% are the Europe books ?!"
Handsome: "Don't have la ... I can't see also ... here all only America one"
Handsome: "Told you redi ... this bookshop big but no use one. Let's go somewhere else ..."
Pretty: "Yah, let's go ..."
*walks away in a rush*

OK. Let's reveal some points here. I was at Mid Valley. Pretty Big Books store is MPH Bookstore.

Now, tell me, how would it be even NOT possible that you don't find Europe Travel Guides in MPH. If you can't find 'em here, good luck elsewhere. You can find books about quantum physics that you won't even find in some University bookstores in this MPH store.

If Handsome and Pretty just looked two more shelves to the right, the European guides are all there. The Travel Guides were organized in continents, first Americas, then Europe, then Africa followed by Asia/Ocenia.

The couple actually walked to the right section, right next to the shelves where they would have found their book. Some people will call them blur, but I look at it as people who suffer from tunnel vision, maybe even a little narrow minded.

How many times in the past have been like a teeny weeny bit from finding what we want, and gave up just when it was tantalizingly close?

How many times have we given up when we could have turned a few more stones? When we could have knocked a few more doors? When we could have pushed it a little bit more?

Open up your mind !! The European Travel Guides are just 2 shelves away !!!

13 March 2006

Top Ten Changes to Your Lifestyle That Might Help Offset Petrol Price Increase

Yeah, I know this post has a pretty long title - it's a mouthful isn't it? - but it's part of the lifestyle change expected of us to live with the higher petrol prices and the expected impact. You see, we'll have to build up our stamina for more walking now that driving is so expensive. So ... without stopping for breath, please repeat after me: "Top Ten Changes to Your Lefstyle That Might Help Offset Petrol Price Increase". Can? One more time !!! "Top Ten Changes to Your Lefstyle That Might Help Offset Petrol Price Increase". Good.

Oh well, the prices are up, it'll never come down EVER, and what can we do? Just bite that bullet loh ... take the pain. Take the train.

So, here are my suggested changes to your lifestyle that could potentially cushion the petrol price increase blow:

  • For goodness sake, ditch those RM 12 coffee for RM 1 kopitiam kopi. What real difference does it make whether you drink siong dan RM 12 coffee or RM 1 kopitiam stuff?
  • Buy pirated DVDs and do a movie pool - invite all your friends over. Saves money compared to going to the movies. (I know it's not legit, but I didn't say I'm providing you with legit lifestyle changes)
  • Walk outstation instead of driving. It's healthier as well. If Kenny Sia can do 42 km in 6 hours, so can you !!! So you only take around 4-5 days of walking from Jalan Duta to Ipoh (around 200 kms, assuming you only do 42 km daily). And you'll probably loose a bit of excess weight along the way.
  • Let's all take public transportation en masse - this will make all the public transportation companies cannot cope, and eventually go bankrupt - and will force the government to really spend all RM 4.4 billion on bailing out improving public transportation.
  • It has been rumoured that drinking litres and litres of water will keep the hunger away momentarily. If you drink enough water, you might be able to save one meal a day. In KL, one meal equals to roughly 2-3 litres of petrol ... (For best effect, drink from the office/school/public place where they don't charge you for it).
  • Do you know the average shirt can be worn for 4 days without requiring a washing? Yeah, the trade off is that you stink. But when you stink, your friends will call you for minum less regularly, so guess what? Another saving.
  • Cook at home. I know, your entire cooking repetoire is maggi mee and the fried egg. Which saves you even more, right? But be careful, I heard that overdoses of maggi results in maggi shaped excrement.
  • Advance Malaysia's Agro Inductry !! Plant your own ubi kayu and sawi. Just like our parents/grandparents did in the 40s during the Japanese occupation era.
  • Lead a healthy lifestyle - sleep as early as possible everyday. Assuming you don't switch on the TV and lights when you sleep, you'll save on the electricity bill.
  • Sign a petition to urge the government to spend RM4.4 billion building a time machine that would bring us all back to the time when petrol prices are low.
Just for fun, some bonus entries:

  • Instead of using a hair dryer, dry your hair naturally in the sun. Malaysia has plenty of sun !!
  • To save on entertainment expenses, next time you hang out in a bar, just ask for cold water - all night long.
  • Next time someone asks you for a light, hand them a magnifying glass. (Only applicable to smokers)
  • When your girlfriend bugs you for that new tank top, buy her the cloth, threads, needles, scissors and a sewing machine. Like they say, if you teach a man how to fish ...

Well, I know it's the nth time I've been blogging about the petrol price increase. The truth is, even for me, it's hitting me hard, and yes, I do have room to make some lifestyle adjustments. I just think about some of the people I know who have no room for such adjustments. I wonder what their adjustment would be?

Stupid Weekend Golfer ...

Finally, after working on weekends for sometime, I caught a little break in the schedule. I'm finally able to get sometime and chill out and do the things I wanna do.

But did I do anything I wanted to do? Noooo .... not by a long way.

For the first time in days, I was able to sleep until 10.30 in the morning ... =) =) =) It's always good to be able to get more bed time.

Did nothing for a change, just read the Sunday comics -> can you imagine I haven't done that in a while now?

Then I went to the driving range to hit some golf balls. Golf is a good way to let off steam, you know?

Why play golf? Because you can imagine the ball is someone's head ... maybe even your boss ... and whack it really hard.

While I was there, there was this novice who was obviously not very good at hitting a stationery ball. He had lots of hits all over the driving range (which is fine ... that's why you practice and learn). But the stupid fella had to learn to hit a driver - yes, a driver - the longest, baddest, meanest club a golfer can lay his hands on. And he hit a really terrible shot, which went sideways instead of forward, bounced off the safety partition, and ricochet into ME.

Exhibit A: Incident Report. Stupid was supposed to hit where the black arrow point. But his ball fly where the red arrow point. In the end, it hit Moz where the yellow star is. Ouch !!

It hurts OK??

What that fella said? "Sorry ... why you stand there?"

What you mean why I stand there ?? I also practising my golf mah !!! I have a right to be there.

Not wanting a fight, I just let it be. He rattled off a few more words, which I didn't really care about ... coz I think he lost it. He was being defensive in his comments, and it just wasn't worth my time arguing with him. I wasn't hit in such a way that I would have been really hurt anyways, but the fact is:

(1) Beginners don't hit drivers. That's not a club you can handle.
(2) If you hit such terrible shots that bounce off your safety partition, you say sorry.
(3) I have every right to be where I am ... I paid RM 8 for 100 balls, just like you.
(4) It's so not in the spirit of golfing to be such a bad sport.

Anyways, this just reinforced what some of my golf partners tell me - golf is being spoilt by stupid weekend golfers who're driven to take the game up for reasons other than the love of the game. I hate these people.

Oh well, no damage done. I hope this weekend golfer will someday manage to hit shots with his driver that goes further than my 8 iron.


Finally, jogged today. In the previous weeks, weather, work and appointments all conspired against me to prevent my jogging. 5.8 km in 40 minutes or so ... not really measuring.


Thanks to pelf, daisy and angel for cheering up what was a really drab weekend. * Hugs *

12 March 2006


When I finally completed my IT degree 9 years ago, it was with a sense of relief. I thought that by joining the workforce, I'd be a happy man, free from the worries I had in my student days.


Turns out that the only reason I work is because there are bills to pay.

Car loan.
House loan.
Cell phone bill.
Electric bill.
Water bill.
Indah Water bill.
ASTRO bill.
Credit card bills.
Makan bill.
Petrol for car.
Streamyx bill.
Income Tax.
Cukai Tanah.
Cukai Pintu.
Local Government Assessment.
Road Tax.
Health Insurance.

What better life? What happier days? What worry am I free from?

I'm actually surprised I have some savings at the end of the day.

And for what little money I earn, I'm really being asked to work like a dog by bosses who don't understand the need for breaks. I have been working weekends for many weeks now. And some of these hours are unusually long and hard for all of us.

I need a new job. I can't shoulder the burden of subsidising my own existance. Let me see, how do I pass the burden on to someone else ??

Oh. Sorry. I can't. I can't raise my salary. That's up to my bosses.

Isn't it ironic that the hallmark of the western world is such a paradox?
Governments have to be democracies - otherwise they probably will invade you or at least embargo you.
Big Businesses though, are all run like dictatorships - otherwise they'll impose sanctions on you and make you sign the WTO.

Someone tell me a joke ... I need comic relief from my stressful life ...

11 March 2006

Haha ... You're both OLDER now !!!

I know it's an unusual way to wish your pals a Happy Birthday ... but I just had to remind everybody that I'm still the baby in the group !!!

Two birthdays in the space of a week, so I'm gonna save blog space and wish 'em both in one entry.

Yes, you're both special, you both deserve an entry, but I lazy. Heck, the both of you don't even know each other ! But, what to do? I really lazy ...

Yesterday, a certain Joshua turned a year older. He won't reveal his age to me, but I know the truth - you're older than I am. =)

Both pictures are from the little do in the office for Joshua.

So paiseh about age, even birthday cake also only got 1 candle ..

And on 13 March, in a few days' time, Sean - you're also turning one year older !!! Wei, time to find a landlady for the apartment ... feels too .... empty !!!

I'm so nasty ... hehe ... well, my birthday will come, you guys can take your potshot at me then ;-)

Happy Birthday !!!

09 March 2006

Top Ten Things You Don't Wanna Hear From Your Girl ...

Haha ... it's time to make funnies again about this boy-girl thing. This one's to commemorate my friend S biting the dust tying the knot soon.

You know, there comes a time in a relationship when you have those small talk. You know, the kind of talk where you guys find a quite place, with dim lighting, soft music and color coordinated furniture, then snuggle up to a little conversation.

Often times, the exchange involves intimate, sweet nothings. Words that sounds like music to your partner's ears, but really mean nothing much. You know the drill.

Anyways, it doesn't always turn out the way you want it to. There are times when you say the wrong thing, or when you hear the wrong words ... in any case, for the newly initiated couples, here are the Top Ten Things You Don't Wanna Hear from Your Girl ... (replace the Girl with Boy if you so wish ..) ...

  • "Dear, I think I just farted ..."
  • "Honey, do I look fat in this ?"
  • "That will be RM 350, thank you"
  • "Darling, have you heard about the Jessica Chung story? Well my story is similar ..."
  • "Baby, I made a tatoo with your name on it. But they ran out of heart shapes, so they put in a tombstone instead ..."
  • "It's complicated, baby, but you're like, so gonna become a daddy soon ..."
  • "You know that movie Brokeback Mountain? Well, I'm a kinda like that too .."
  • "Sweetie, I need to tell you what I really did in Bangkok .."
  • "My parents don't want us to meet anymore .."
  • "My children don't want us to meet anymore .."
Yeah, I know some of these are lame, but it's last minute - I got the invite only tonight, and the reception's already very soon.

Hope you guys will have an everlasting love together =)

08 March 2006

Dummies Guide to Hogging the Road

Road hogging is a Malaysian specialty. It's not restricted to just us Malaysians, but we do it best. No one even comes close to touching us on the matter of road hogs. Malaysia Boleh !!

How is it that we do this so well is a little beyond me. Moz not mind reader. However, if you want to excel at hogging roads, there are some simple, achievable tips for you:

Essential Road Hog Behaviour Guide
Recommended Speed: 20 - 40 km/h, depending on road condition, traffic condition and oncoming traffic.
Recommended Face Skin Thickness: Very Thick. Better still if your head is all skin and no brain.
Recommended In Car Music: Dondang Sayang. Very loudly, so you can pretend you can't hear the honks.
Recommended Look: Deer Staring into the headlights look.
Recommended Car: Expensive. Better still if you have Ahmad.

Tip #1: Location, location, location
Malaysia is perfect for road hogs, since the first rule of road hogging is this: You need a narrow road

So you need a narrow road. Better still if opportunity to overtaking is NIL. If it's a one way street in the middle of Melaka, you've found it. If it's a narrow trunk road between towns in the middle of nowhere, you've found it. If you're driving on a narrow lane up Fraser's Hill, you've found it. We have plenty of these roads, do we not?

Why does it matter? Because narrow roads make it hard to overtake, thus amplifying your hogging effect.

Tip #2: Traffic Flow is important too
Another key road hogging factor is: Works best when opposite traffic flow is heavy

If you attempt to hog the road when opposite traffic flow is light or non-existant, the end result is that you look like a fool. Believe me, you do. Try doing 20 km/h when you're driving on a road with NO traffic from the opposing direction. The other cars that come along will simply zip pass you, overtaking like a hot knive cutting thru butter.

So make sure you drive slowly and hog the road only when you have heavy oncoming traffic. Perfect places are like roads leading out from constructions sites (lots of lorries), rubbish dumps (lots of lorries), and JPJ Road Testing Centers (lots of drivers being tested). Most trunk roads are also good.

It makes it doubly infuriating when you hog the road only when your victims have no way to overtake you.

Tip #3: Make of car is important too
To increase the effect of road hogging: Drive impossibly expensive car where possible

When a Kancil hogs the road, when an ought-to-be-scrapped Datsun 120Y or when an antiquated car hogs the road, some people don't take it as badly as they would when, say, a Porsche 911 is hogging the road.

Can't quite explain this, but if you drive a car that's either (a) 2 litre and above or (b) impossibly expensive, the road hog effect increases.

Good cars to drive when road hogging includes: any make or model of BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Lexus, high-end Japanese models. It just seems that the impression is that if you have a big, flashly, expensive ride, you'll wanna push the pedal to the metal.

Tip #4: Cooperate where it makes sense
When you can't beat 'em, join 'em. Road hoggers united makes good effect !!

Imagine this ... there's a road hog already hogging the left lane. Actually, there's nothing wrong with that on a 2 lane road. It might take a little longer, but cars will get past on the right lane eventually.

So, in this situation, what to do? Why of course - cooperate. Why only one hogger and only on the left lane? You should immediately move to the right lane and hog traffic there too. In fact, you should drive shoulder-to-shoulder with the left lane hogger - it's a sign of solidarity !!

Tip #5: Take the path in the middle
No - this is not Buddishism class. The middle path here is litteral - no philosophical. Drive in the middle of the road

So you're driving on a two lane road. There's no other road hoggers you're aware of. Oncoming traffic is somewhat heavy. But it's a two lane road ... so how ?

Drive the car so that half is on the left lane, and half on the right lane. Stay that way. And maybe steer just teeny weeny bits to the left or right every once in a while. Just to make it that much more harder for the car behind to pass you.

So there ... tips for the road hogs. Keep it up guys, I'm so indebted to you folks because without road hogs, I would probably be accelerating so much I'd be pokai from all the petrol I need to pump every week.

07 March 2006

I damn tired ... damn tired ...

I did not realised until I reached home today how much work I really have done ....

3 conference calls, 2 write ups, 2 documents reviewed, 1 schedule worked out, 1 cutover plan framework put in place. 1 working day. How do I even manage?

Today is like reaching a full stop. I so tired. I so don't want to work.

I have been up since 6.30. I am still working now. I damn tired. I damn no energy. I damn no motivation.

I so need a break. Tell me a joke, someone. Tell me a joke.

What should he do ?

Lemme do a Pelf styled blog today ... I'm gonna ask you: "What should he do?". Ok, maybe not exactly Pelf style - Pelf style with a twist ...

This is based on a real incident that just happened today ...

Someone's brother - let's call him A - was driving illegally - underaged and without a license. And since this is a "What should he do?" blog, obviously, A got into an accident - hit another car - damaged that other car, and injured the driver as well. Let's call the victim B

Now comes the poser - B takes A's MyKad. Take as in take possession, not as in take note or simply jotting it down. Take.

B then got A's mobile number. Of course A is scared. He's just done something criminal. Of course he's avoiding B's phone calls. What do you think an underaged boy who's just been in an accident will do?

So, A got his brother - let's call him C - involved. C spoke to A. C of course, is trying to do the right thing for his brother and resolve the situation.

A demands RM5,000 by tomorrow morning for settlement.

C doesn't have RM5,000 now. C's mum is in another state, but has the money to pay.

What should C do?

Report to police? After all B has acted illegally as well when he took possession of A's MyKad. And what's stopping B from reporting to police after the RM5,000 has been paid?

Settle? And hope to get the MyKad back as well as no further claims?

Pay the costs incurred plus some extra? Offer to pay for the car repairs and the hospital costs, and add some extra??

What ???
What should A do?

06 March 2006

Treasure Hunt Questions

History: Moz did a treasure hunt, more because it sounded fun, and it ended in Melaka (which sounded fun, and sounded like a lot of food too). My team had a lot of fun - lots of jabs, banter, the occassional near argument and in the end, a very good laugh too =)

Of course, it DID not help that Moz initially told everyone to take it easy and have fun, but instead, turned out to be the most competitive person around !!

We ended 7th out of 28 teams taking part, and we could have ended 5th had we been a little more experienced. Anyways, my friends made me put up the questions, since some are about to go on a Hunt of their own, and most are simply curious.

Just remember that the objectives of these questions are simply to guide you to look for a signboard / business name or an establishment of any sort. On their own, these questions mean little, since you have to find the answers within a given section of the Treasure Hunt, as guided by tulips, a separate instruction sheet which gives very precise road directions, and indicate the sections where answers should appear.

So, here comes the questions. Feel free to attempt the answers ... I'll publish them in a separate entry on a later date. Leave a comment, or if you feel paiseh, you can also email me at mozillamonster [at] gmail [dot] com.

  1. A peranakan turned into a Swedish singing group.
  2. Prescription using tea leaves?
  3. First Singapore Air Force before uncertain arrival.
  4. 12" makes a shot that can be styled here.
  5. Hair stylist popular in the past, still found at this place.
  6. Money found next to place with plenty of water.
  7. As EMAS change to gold probably the answer will be clear.
  8. Power protester.
  9. Cover with plenty of oil.
  10. Something that shines, but here not at night.
  11. Staple food that turns into a light weapon used by Luke Skywalker.
  12. Steady Honda model.
  13. Straits Settlement male and female in food business.
  14. Al, a local brain hidden before success.
  15. A warrior's small business.
  16. Cops shelter.
  17. Education institution for male metal?
  18. PM's weight?
  19. Find the company that has ray in time.
  20. Shocking company ran by dignitary?
  21. A favorite for vehical can be cleaned here.
  22. 'W' needed for classy well known German car.
  23. It all happens in China in two years time.
  24. Nevada town for getting together.
  25. This town's flower.
  26. Building with broken ATM.
  27. Silver dressing.
  28. Make a record with a short road at the end.
  29. Where troubled airline vehicle does clean up?
  30. A concern dealing with moments to chat.
  31. A shark's breakfast outlet?
  32. Some ear problems can make men sad.
  33. Dough from backward European Union made here.
  34. Scandal in Nixon era?
  35. "Ragnarok Online" clearly seen on this board.
Wokay, those are the questions, each worth 3 points. Have fun !! Work is going to be swamping me the next few days, maybe you'll have some fun cracking this between this blog entry and the next one ... and please, if you are really serious, get some minyak angin handy.