Tuesday, August 28, 2007

"It comes with the territory"

To be honest, work hasn't been that ...er... 'good' in the office. There's gonna be some layoffs later in the year, which means I probably go back to freelancing again. Yah, I know I promised not to write bout work here and to write bout the stuff that makes me happy. Don't get the wrong idea, my work does make me happy it's just the current doom and gloom atmosphere in the office that's getting me down.

It ain't something you look forward to but in this line of work, it comes with the territory. I'll still be working till another month or two. Then maybe take a little break, no I don't think I'll be leaving the country, gotta save money! I guess I'll catch up with my friends, games with them, clean up the apartment, more homecooked meals at my folks. Will I be blogging more? I dunno. But I do know that being jobless ain't gonna stop me from contributing to this. No matter how fucked up my life is or will be, there are others who need help more than I do.

Monday, August 20, 2007

"I sure wouldn't have this problem with porn"

Was going through my stuff the other day and realized that I got a whole pile of DVD sets that I bought but have yet to watch. No time, no mood etc. Geez, I sure wouldn't have this problem with porn! Hah!

Here's the bunch I got from Amazon at a discount, I forgot the price but they were a lot cheaper than buying here at a local DVD store. Animanics Vol. 1 and 2, Pinky and The Brain Vol. 1 and 2, Martha Stewart's Baking Favorites, Homemade Holidays and Favorite Cookies. Oh, you definitely can't find Martha's stuff here.

These (fortnightly) Star Trek file/folder sets I got from Japan, one of my earlier trips, it's from the bookstore Kinokuniya, can't remember if it's Tokyo or Osaka. There's a DVD in each of them, 3 random episodes from either Next Generation, Voyager or Deep Space Nine. And a lot of articles in Japanese too. Totally impulse buy cos it looked cool and I'm a sci-fi nut. I didn't even check the price, Set 1 was cheap but Sets 2 and 3 were like double the price!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

"Skinny monkey was on a leash"

Can you believe it, the fruit stall near the office upped their prices by at least 10 cents last month. Its cos of the recent local 7% goods and services tax increase (from 5%). My usual afternoon fresh slice of papaya and a banana is no longer a dollar but S$1.20. A 10 cents jump from 50 cents to 60 cents for a slice of fruit is not equal to 2%.

Yah, I know prices of fresh fruits around the world is a lot more than here, that’s what my expat colleagues tell me. Well, at least the price of a cup of fruit juice is still the same S$2. Kinda strange huh?

Oh yah, another leftover tale from my recent Japan trip. I saw a guy walking his pet monkey down a street in Harajuku at nite! The skinny monkey was on a leash and the guy was walking it nonchalantly like a dog. Oh well, I thought that was pretty cool.

Also managed to finally catch Blades of Glory for the in-flight movie. I also, also was lucky enough to stumble upon the best of album by Japanese R&B duo Chemistry, All The Best, while searching through the in-flight entertainment menu. I didn’t even know it was out. So I plugged in, and it sounds good.

Anyway, I was introduced to their music by an ex-colleague a few years ago. I liked their easy R&B style but Japanese CDs here were very, very expensive back then. So after I touched down, I headed to a local CD shop Gramophone and found the set at 20% discount! A double CD plus a concert DVD set! That’s like from S$38 reduced to about S$32.

Monday, August 13, 2007

"Me? Mr. Nice Guy?"

This was certainly a pleasant surprise. Niki gave my blog a little Nice Matters Award. Reckon it's for the "nice and pleasant" stuff around here. Me? Mr. Nice Guy? Hee hee. Thanks a lot Niki!

All right, so here's what I gotta do. So I'm supposed to give a few Nice Matters Awards out too, sounds like a vicious cycle, doesn't it? This is a bunch of blogs that I read whenever I can and yah, they are NICE! Ha!

1. Imp and her Faerie Land. Always makes me smile, even for all the wrong reasons!

2. Lunch is served. Some of BEST damn local food/desert pix around.

3. Skinny Epicurean. Great food reviews and dessert recipes.

4. World according to b. One of the most inspiring blogs around.

5. Forbidden Planet. I usually learn something new whenever I drop by.

Friday, August 10, 2007

"I remember everything"

When I was in Japan last month, our host brought us to this little cafe by the roadside near Mt. Fuji called Cafe M. He brought one of my colleagues there earlier in the month and they all raved about how cosy the place is and how great the food is. So when I was there, we headed there again after our photo shoot. But the place was closed! I could only get this shot. I never got the chance to step in!

But guess what. I found the official website here! Even though I can't read it, the outdoors pix match what I saw and the little glimpses I took while peering through the window. It all looks so neat!

Well, the English football season starts tomorrow I believe and its been a year since I placed a bet. I have mentioned before that I have a wee bit of a gambling problem, I didn't place any bets last season so I'm pretty proud of that. Wish me luck this year! ;)

Remember that watch I got from Japan a couple of weeks ago? Damn! Setting an analog and digital watch together to match the time is a BITCH! I'm trying to get the minute hand to match the digital time exactly!

Saw The Bourne Ultimatium the other nite at the Heineken preview. Kinda enjoyed it. If you are a comic book fan, you would know what I mean when I say the whole thing reads like a movie version of Wolverine's (Weapon X) origin. Especially now that Wolverine has also recently regained all his memories, he even utters the same words, "I remember everything." in the comics. And he goes on this looooong hunt of everyone (and goverment) around the world who messed with his mind and turned him into a killer.

Alright, I need some help here. Can anyone tell me what this green leaf that you usually find in your sashimi is called? When I was in Japan recently, my host told me that it's edible. I never knew that. I tried it and it's kinda little minty and it's supposed to clear the palate. I been trying to find it online but no such luck. This pix is another shot I took while I was there.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

"I'm not an ass man"

Now I'm really tempted to enter one of my flower pix in any local amateur photo contest. Just gotta find one somewhere I guess.

Anyway, got tagged by Niki with this little meme. Gotta come up with 8 random facts bout myself. Let's see, did something almost the same here. So whoever wants to give it a shot, go right ahead. All right, here we go ...

1. I always place a glass of water by my bedside when I go to sleep cos I usually wake up in the middle of the night thirsty.

2. I need to shave every morning otherwise (according to women I know) I'll look like some junkie.

3. I was once stalked by a beautiful but crazy woman.

4. I still get a kick whenever someone asks me if I'm Chinese or Singaporean, my mom's half Chinese. Doesn't happen that often now but it used to happen more frequently when I was a kid.

5. I'm not an ass man nor am I a legs man. I'm more of a pretty face kinda guy. I'll look at her face and front first, more than anything else.

6. I set all my clocks and watches at least a couple of minutes faster than the 'real', official time.

7. I like big breakfasts!

8. I can't drink alcohol on an empty stomach. I need to eat before I drink.

Now its gonna be our National Day real soon and guess what ... a year ago, I saw this wash pole flag hanging next to some laundry and this year on my way to work, the wash pole patriot strikes again!

Sunday, August 05, 2007

"That's a pig's head in front"

It's an early Sunday afternoon and I have just finished vacuuming and mopping the apartment. Figured I'll post the last few pix from my Japan work trip now. Read that the weather in Japan got pretty rainy again after we left so I guess we were lucky.

Well, one minor crummy fact about the whole trip was the coming home to an empty apartment at 2am in the morning part. It would had been nice if there was someone waiting that I could share everything with, right there and then.

Ok, back to what else I did in Japan. I finally tried a bottle of Coke Zero. Didn't take any pix of it. Awww man, it wasn't that good at all. Just another bland carbonated drink with some carmalized taste to it. Will difinitely not buy when it's launched here. Now here's a big ass coffee vending machine I saw in the airport, complete with a little video screen too.

A couple of other vending machines here.

Now here's another great view from my countryside hotel room. This shot was taken at about 5.30am in the morning. I kid you not. Yah, sleep was not an option.

This is a cool duo that was playing outside Shinjuku station. Didn't understand the lyrics but it had a real melody and she's a pretty girl with a great voice, what more could a guy ask for? Was almost tempted to buy the CD.

I don't know what the hell this is but it sure looked real cute. That's a pig's head in front. See the little tail at the back?

Thursday, August 02, 2007

"The cop made me do it"

I was heading home just now and saw that the road was cordoned off cos some huge construction stuff fell off a couple of trailers. So the traffic cop (very politely) told me that I had to get off the sidewalk and walk through the open field. I said, "That means I have to climb the fence?" And he said, "Yes, sorry for the inconvenience."

Sure, its been awhile since I climbed any fences but I'll give it a shot. Hell, the cop made me do it! And I climbed, and it was a breeze. I mean it was exactly like before. Toss my bag over the fence and then climb it.

Anyway, back to Japan. So I had technically one day of R&R, not exactly rest and recreation but more like retail rampage. One day cos of half a day in the afternoon and half a day the next morning before my flight back.

After finishing work in the hotel in Shinjuku, got out at about 4pm and headed straight to C&C curry rice for a very late lunch. Then off to make my biggest ever single purchase in Tokyo. A watch that I had my eye on for some time now. Far as I know, you can't find it here in Singapore. It looks a lot better in real life.

Then it was off to Harujuku to the special Uniqlo concept store. If you haven't heard about it or seen pix of it, it's really neat. Here's how it looks from the outside. It's just across the Levi's store.

Three floors of nothing but cool t-shirts, sold and packed in plastic capsules. Hundreds of them. Only 1,500 Yen each. That's less than S$20! Seriously man, these are really good! I bought 4 but had to get rid of the capsules cos of space in the luggage.

Anyway, I did buy bunch of other stuff along the way and the next day too. Here's a pix of just some of them. Not bad one-day-shopping coming for a straight guy huh? Let's see now ... in the pix below, there's the new Kit Kat flavours, kiwi fruit, melon and green tea (again), a Shinjuku JR line station key chain (got it since that's near where I always stay), an old school Glico man chocolate tin, a Japanese mag on food and more dice for my collection from Tokyo Hands at Takashimaya, these include a Zodiac dice, Yes/No dice, Who/What/Where/Why/When/How dice, emo dice, Food dice in Japanese includes Sushi/Tempura/Beef rice/chinese/Italian/french and a dice with Japanese characters that I don't understand. Guess which is my favorite. ;)