Thursday, April 30, 2009

Cavalock and The Salty Sandwich

There I was, waking up late, alone in the kitchen and thinking what should I have for breakfast. Hah! Japanese dinner leftovers! Got some leftover roe sitting in the fridge, might as well eat them before the expiry date. Why not use them as a spread, well, I mean it sounds like a good idea although I have never heard or seen it done before.

Turned out better than I expected. You got the cheese spread and margarine in there, mixed it up with the crunchy salty roe. That is one mutherfukin’ salty sandwich! Washed it down with a mug of Bailey’s infused coffee and it’s not even 9am.

Now as I’m writing this, I just remembered that I got a new tube of Japanese mayo in the fridge too. Damn, I wonder how crazy the sandwich might have been if I whipped out that tube! <^;^>

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Cavalock and Weekend Food Detours

Strange food thing happened over the weekend. Two places that I had planned to go for lunch on Saturday and Sunday were either closed or gone.

On Saturday, I was at Seah Street and had craving for Soup Restaurant's lettuce-wrapped chicken, reached the place and it was closed for renovation. Ended up at Bugis Swenson's instead. Saw they had almond-covered lamb chops. The last time I had something like that was in Brisbane during last year's Gen Con with the guys. Oh boy, it didn't even come close ... while the macadamia nuts I had in Oz were baked together with the pork, the almonds in this case were just sparingly sprinked over the chops. Just look at the pix!

And on Sunday, was at Suntec and wanted Carl Jr's burger for lunch. Got there and the joint was gone. Replaced by that fakey New York New York deli. Then I saw the popular Astons has an outlet there too. Will be my first time trying it. Had the prime ribeye. Damn, now I know wat the fuss was about. For that price, it's the best value-for-money piece of meat in town. Medium done just right. Good sauce and decent side orders.

Got this at the supermarket at Suntec, was tempted after seeing this. Yes, mine came in a glass jar. :( Question, they are supposed to be much softer than the crunchy green ones, right?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Cavalock and The Numbers Game

Been seeing lots of test numbers this week. The private health folks came by my soon-to-be ex office, took the free basic body fats, blood pressure, urine tests. Blood pressure a little bit high 132/80, normal is 120/80. But the test was conducted right after lunch, and walking back to the office in the afternoon could have played a role in the high readings.

BMI is normal at 20.34, a tiny little bit of extra body fat (0.8%) to get rid of. Anyway it’s something I already planned to do some time back during my break when I was thinking of quitting.

I also took an online IQ test. My first ever IQ test. BUT since it was done online, the results aren’t valid so like if you got an evil genius level, it doesn’t really mean anything. I got a(n unofficial) 134.

Snack taste time! Finally cracked open the Kit Kats I bought from Tokyo. First up was the Limited Edition Soy Sauce Kit Kat. I expected something really salty. But it was (as it should be) more sweet than salty. Like salted caramel. Reminded me of the McGrilles from McDonald’s morning menu.

Next up is the Yokohama Cheesecake Kit Kat. Like the soy sauce version, this is also your basic white chocolate. The cheesecake flavour wasn't that distinctive. I wouldn't be able to tell that it's anything more than just good white choc. Much prefer the soy sauce Kit Kat. <^;^>

Friday, April 17, 2009

Cavalock and The Smoking Yakitori Grill

So last weekend I was gonna try my new yakitori grill I got from Tokyo … plugged it in, saw the rod turn red hot within seconds, smelled the smoke and finally freaked out when the sparks started flying.

Yup, the grill shorted. Guessed it must have been the difference in voltage. So now I’m adding another errand to my list of things to do when I’m not working, look for an electrician. Anyone knows a good one? Really.

Anyway, I’ll post a pix of the grill once it’s working properly.

What else have I been up to, let’s see now…I haven’t been eating at anywhere new or fancy lately as you can see from the lack of food postings. Maybe I'm subconsciously trying to save money or something since I know I won't be working real soon.

Well, speaking of trying, I'm still trying to empty the fridge of my Japanese snacks. I was gonna say I haven’t touched a drop of booze since I got back until I remembered I always add a small shot of Bailey’s in my morning coffee. Hah! Well, all right then, I haven’t had any beer or wine since that mug of Asahi tap in Tokyo.

Now I thought I'll just share some non-food stuff I got from Japan. Food porn magazines!

The red magazine is a ramen guide to 251 of the most popular ramen shops in Tokyo. The other mag has like tons of mouthwatering pastries pix, and little maps too to all the shops. The sushi book is really cool, check out the pages...

All kinds of sushi, with pictures of the fish, names in English and little calendars at the top to show when they are in season.

Lots of very interesting ramen dishes here. The close-ups will really leave you drooling.

Man, my last mag just made me wanna go camp out at a depachika!

Now I can't read Japanese so if anyone wants to borrow these mags, just let me know! <^;^>

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Cavalock Steps Out Of The Comfort Zone

Hope I'm not too late, Happy Easter everyone! Its been awhile since I blogged, and no, I wasn't back in Japan or anywhere out of the country. Been busy with work and did MAJOR life-changing decisions...but before I get to that, look what I made this afternoon!

Vanilla Meringue Tarts. It's a recipe from an episode of Michael Smith's Chef at Home. Saw it on the Asian Food Channel and decided to try it. Real easy to make and it turned out pretty good. A little sticky in the middle like cotton candy and not too sweet either.
Before heading into the oven...

and when they are done.

Now back to my life-changing decision! <^;^>

I decided to quit my job! Been in the media/advertising industry for way over 10 years now and in the last year, I been so mentally and emotionally drained by work, it's just crazy. I like doing wat I do but my current office environment is just plain awful, it's just not healthy. Pay is good but after awhile, it's just not worth it. I think Danny Choo has the best example (Thanks again, Danny), here's what he wrote...

Now I would like to talk about something I call the "Comfort Zone."The comfort zone is where one is content with their current situation and I'm going to use an ex colleague who I shall name as Sally as an example. Sally had a job doing what she was good at (web design) and had a small team to manage. She had a good salary and good working hours considering that it was Tokyo.

But Sally wanted more from her life than just being content - she wanted to be happy. My personal interpretation is that being happy and being content are two different things. Being content fulfills basic human needs of being able to eat and have shelter. Being happy is going a step further and fulfilling the need to live ones passion.One day, I asked Sally why she didn't start to do something about her situation. She said that she was waiting for somebody to give her an opportunity. When I asked "who", she said "I don't know..."Sally was in the Comfort Zone and going nowhere fast. Her comfort made it difficult for her to take her own initiative to seek other opportunities.

If you are unhappy with your current line of work and presuming that you work for 8 hours, sleep for 8 hours and use the reminder of the 8 hours for commutation, hygiene, recreation and nourishment consumption - you are spending 33% of your life doing something that constantly fuels that burning question of "what if" - don't fuel that question anymore - go out and do something!

It could be anything from starting to meet recruiters, taking up a new course or activity, research, meeting people with similar interests and so on. I may make it sound plain and simple but in fact it is. Something leads to something. Nothing leads to nothing.
Money is indeed important in this society we live in and I understand that one may need to do something that one may not exactly like to make ends meet. But, one can also be doing something on the side at the same time (learning, experiencing, meeting) in order to fulfill ones real passion. If you truly believe in yourself, your skills and ability, then you will be successful anyway - meaning that if you are going to ditch a well paid job to take a risk of a lower paying position where you can fulfill your passion, you will eventually make it anyway - because its you.

Taking the leap from safe comfortable steady ground into an unknown void is not something that comes easily. Humans basic instinct is to protect itself and places priority on food and shelter and taking risks could affect these necessities.But life is not just about being comfortable - its about living your passion.You can spend most of your life doing something you dislike to bring in the money which pays the bills which enables you to go back to work another day to bring in the money which pays the bills which enables you to go back to work another day to bring in the money which pays the bills which enables you to go back to work another day to bring in the money which pays the bills...

What Danny said or wrote in his blog is pretty much what I'm going through. I can be contented right now but I'm not happy. Did a lot thinking and decided to step out of my comfort zone and quit the place. Some people say it's crazy to quit without a job during a recession. But I got my family's support and enough savings to tie me over for the next few months. If I don't do it now, when? when the recession is over? I'm not getting any younger.

I got some things planned. Among them is spending more time with my aging family. Am sure you never hear of anyone saying 'I wish I spent more time at the office' when the guy's dying, its always regret bout not spending enough time with family and doing things you wanna do. So I'm gonna be doing some of the things I wanna do, at least for now. ;) Learn new things, reconnect with some old things. It's not going to be easy, things are going to be rough especially when it comes to my aging family, I know that and they know it too. I'm scared, I'm nervous, I'm excited but I think i'm gonna be happy.