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Tuesday, December 28, 2004

memories of one

today was wedding day... after sleeping in, it was wake up, turn on computer, shower, eat and rush off... and out for the whole day. this is a pic of the newlyweds with the yf crew. kbc has well decked-out audio and lighting!

item #1 that bothered me today: i did recall seeing her during the ceremony, and maybe even before the ceremony started. there was zero recognition on my part. i figured she was just someone i didn't know - after all, there were plenty of other guests i didn't know. after the ceremony i found myself near where she was sitting, and someone else in an adjacent row called out to me and we started chatting. after a minute or two (by now i was standing less than a meter from her, though i think she had her back to me a bit as she was talking to the person beside her), it finally dawned on me who she was! sure i hadn't seen her for a while, and very rarely all year, but had i really failed to recognise her? it was both funny and a bit disturbing. maybe i'm making too much of it, but it did surprise me that it took me so long to recognise someone who not (that) long ago i had been close to...

straight after the reception and bushdance (in which i didn't participate, partly because there was only really one person i would have liked to have danced with, and well... it just wasn't going to happen, and so my heart wasn't in it to be having *that* much fun :p), i drove off to join my parents at a "party" held by my dad's big boss(es). let's just say that these folks are rich. maybe not rich like bill gates or whoever the guy is that owns ikea and is now supposedly richer than bill gates, but plenty rich enough for the likes of me. they own pretty much the whole street in a waterfront/bayside area, and the main house is easily double the size of what i live in. and this is just the holiday house, one of many in the world, where they or their family/friends stay when they're in town. i mean, check this dining room for example - the table seats TWENTY people. that's crazy in my books...

anyways, the party. the big/old boss is in town and has a party, and the families of the employees who help look after these properties are all invited. the food (main dishes) is catered by a well known local chinese restaurant. wait staff included. then there's the entertainment - a 20 minute private fireworks display! i have no idea how much this would've cost, but i know it's nothing i could ever afford... it's setup so that we had the best seats in the house - from the back porch, looking across the canal, where the fireworks crew were set to launch the fireworks from a park on the other side. of course, plenty of passing motorists stopped to view the free show. and that's not all - all us kids (ie children of employees and other friends) were given an ang pao (red packet). now firstly i was totally not expecting this cos it's like... i'm already getting treated to free food and a private fireworks viewing. and secondly i thought ok maybe this is just a token sorta thing... no idea how much would be inside right? maybe a $10 or a $20 at the most? of course it would've been rude to open it straight away, so i checked it on the drive home... and i guess i was close... just add a zero to my first guess. yeah. that's rich. so i decide to give it to my parents cos 1) none of the adults got any, and 2) i haven't given them anything all year and i feel bad about freeloading even though there's no obligation/pressure from them on me, and in fact my mum suggested i stop paying them when she realised i was still paying even after being unemployed for a few months last year.

item #2 that bothered me today: you'd think that having the sort of day that i had, i would/should be happy, right? sharing in friends' wedding, lots of free yummy food, having a momentary dip in lavishness... but no... at the end of (and during) all this i just feel kinda empty. like there's something missing. or maybe the thing should be a one. can't say more cos i'm incredibly scared it may all blow up in my face.

argh!

*sigh*

Monday, December 27, 2004

is that love i smell in the air?

  • 1x official wedding invitation for next month, received this afternoon
  • 1x wedding, to take place tomorrow
  • 1x engagement announcement (news just in a few minutes ago... she's skipped her two older siblings!)
  • 1x engagement from earlier this month, wedding to take place later next year
  • 1x wedding in april
  • 1x engagement in the pipeline

as for me? well... let's not even go there right now... i'll just try to be happy for those whom God has chosen to give the gift of marriage, while i learn to appreciate my singleness for however long i have it.

au revoir, mon ami

i haven't the words to express what/how i feel... today, this past week and a half, or perhaps even this past 9 months or so. i just know that the tears don't seem to want to stop flowing.

tonight, i said goodbye to my friend for the third, and quite possibly the last time in the space of 5 months. if we ever see each other again, the circumstances will be different than our past times together.

she says that this photo of us looks a bit suss... all i was doing was trying to block the camera lens cos i didn't want to have my photo taken, but it ended up looking like we're trying to hide something :p actually my eyes weren't even open so i didn't realise the outcome till later - all i was going by was the timing of the flashes, and sticking my hand up between the red eye reduction pre-flash and the actual flash for the exposure. or i suppose you could just call it art ;)

- - - - -

it seems that pretty much all the close and/or good friends i have, have in some way, shape or form "moved" away from me these past few years. this one has by far been the most emotional, perhaps at least partly because it is/seems so final.

i think i can count one remaining friend in the good/close category. most likely our friendship will change in the next few months also. i hope for the best, and so very much fear for the worst.

but life will, and needs to, go on. the morning will usher in a new day. i shall sleep long, awake, and get some therapeutic value out of a nice shower.

here's to tomorrow...

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

rain on my parade

the rain is falling with a bit of a vengeance at the moment. well, perhaps "falling" isn't quite the right word - it seemss too passive for what sounds like drops which are hoping to drum their way through whatever solid objects cross their path, similar to how a waterfall wears away and smooths the rocks below it, but on a slightly gentler scale :)

still new-jobless.

and people are reneging on and declining my free tickets, leaving me with half the tickets unallocated (with yours truly making up half of the allocated half).

i need more friends :p

i need sleep. if only this rain could continue all night, and i continue sleeping all day tomorrow!

Sunday, December 05, 2004

good one...!

as in, with sarcasm...

because i've "wasted" my afternoon and evening playing those darn addictive games trying to beat my best scores, watching australia lose the ODI to the kiwis, and generally pottering around, when i should have either worked on some job applications, or gotten some rest. now it's getting late, and i've achieved neither... (ok i did complete some things could could be considered productive... thought not quite of any great importance or priority...)

and i've just agreed to let someone cut my hair. someone who's only ever really cut/trimmed her own hair and her sister's hair. i have 6 days to fret over this verbal commitment... :o

dumplings & thanksgiving

work in progress - some of the (pre-cooked) dumplings we made yesterday. as you can see from the variety of shapes on the tray, we had a few different methods of dumpling "folding", harking from various schools of thought (ie what our respective parents may have taught us). i reckon mine look the best and are the most orthodox :p

can you spot the cluster that i made?? hehe

once again i underestimated the time required to make the dumplings (as happens when you don't have enough experience under your best to be able to judge these things), and i was still preparing ingredients when my helpers showed up some 20 minutes late. plus we ran out of dumpling skin, so i had to race out to buy some more (and the first/closest place i went to didn't have any!) but we got there in the end (albeit 45 minutes behind schedule!), and this is the pot of dumplings we brought to the yf thanksgiving night. i was pretty happy with our effort, and i think next time i'll be a bit more organised (experience is a good teacher!), and might have to get a few more refining tips from my parents - i don't think there were any problems in the taste department, but from an aesthetic sense a lot of the dumplings "broke", either during cooking or mainly after storage. i can't believe i just said that - i usually care nothing for presentation etc, citing the logical fact that it's all the same when it gets to your stomach. so maybe i do care a little bit, hehe. call it taking pride in your work :p

anyways, thanksgiving night has become something of an annual tradition in yf, i think ever since the mid-90s when the chings introduced the idea (having brought it over from the states). we gather for a pot-luck dinner [see photo], followed by a time of sharing, reflecting, and giving thanks for the year gone by. it was a bit of a feast, and as usual i would have loved to have eaten even more, but at two helpings my stomach had reached its limit and i had to give it some time to digest all the goodness i had fed it :p

before the real sharing began, we were treated to a skit summarising (in a somewhat cross-pollinated sort of way!) some of the things we had covered in bible study this year. this photo shows a re-enactment of the sinister assassination of ehud (read all about in judges 3:12-30). hmm... upon closer examination of the photo, i think our ehud is using the wrong arm! oh well...

in any case, it was an excellent night of sharing and hearing about what other people have been going through/experiencing, and most importantly what they have been learning as a result. it seems that a lot of people had tough times this year, nevertheless they were all able to still see the God who is good, despite whatever difficulties they had experienced. and that's just a mightily encouraging thing. to hear the same theme running through different contexts and circumstances, really makes you reflect on what being thankful is all about... and i did share and say something about that too, which i might write about in another post.

for now, i'm off to play a bit of squares and curve ball... very simplistic games, but highly addictive! (you have been warned... :p)

Saturday, December 04, 2004

alternative appendicitis and the winning wave

this is a somewhat backdated entry. the seeds of thought were there a few nights ago, and i jotted down a few notes, but now can't quite fully recall the precise details relating to the brief notes.

anyways... thursday felt like a not-so-good day. as i said i can't remember exactly why - there was definitely more than one factor, but i can only recall one of them. maybe the other was related as well. yeah, i think it was. so anyways i find out on thursday that this whole outsourcing/restructure thing which was announced like two and half months ago (and which was supposed to take place within eight weeks) is still dragging on as far as my particular role was concerned. my role/job function is now not going to be transitioned for another month...

A.R.G.H.!!!

i'm finding it hard enough dragging myself out of bed every morning, tossing up whether or not i should just call in sick and not bother with the whole thing. i feel so much like an appendix - an appendage hanging on all by itself, sitting there doing who knows what day after day. to most people it may seem rather useless and devoid of any real function, but having the potential to cause great pain and distress should it be inflamed. as i said, i am ready to go at the drop of a hat... i just don't have a good hat yet. maybe one with pop-out blades hidden in the rim that i can use as an uber-shuriken... and lined with explosive powder that detonates on impact, just as i stroll casually away from the building, out of reach of the flames and projectiles... !

so back to thursday. i'm not happy. this news doesn't help. and as i was leaving work for the day (don't get me wrong, i do still turn up to work and do my work. at the same time i'll freely admit that i'm mostly operating on a "doing the minimum" mindset...), my manager catches me and apologises for the delay in my transition. it's not really his fault per se... but that doesn't stop the whole situation from being just a bit of a "good idea at the time but did anybody actually bother to plan and manage it properly???" that it currently is. and he comments that he notices that i've been a bit out of sorts lately... which got me thinking whether it was so obvious? i suppose i'm struggling to keep a lid on it sometimes... he said he doesn't want me to one day say to him that i've had enough and throw in the towel, that i should look forward to the new role (which i'm not really, but it's probably better than this dead-end road i'm currently on), that i should try to prove myself there etc etc. i then let him know why i'm not looking forward to the new role, and why i doubt that proving myself will result in anything (since i have already done so in my current role, and got nothing to show for it except malcontent and disillusionment). i think he resigned himself to agreeing with me, especially since he's only been here a few months and i've seen and heard more of how this place works than he has.

i went home. wanted to vege and do nothing, so had a bit of idiot boxing lined up. to my pleasant surprise, i had some winning moments:
  1. my cheque from opionionspaid came! i had "won" some money from doing their surveys... i suppose if you actually calculate how much time i spent on completing the surveys vs. how much money i got from it, it would probably work out to be a not very efficient way of getting money :p
  2. while getting ready to wash up the night's dishes, i turned on the radio to 96.5 (which is something i tend to do whenever i wash dishes), and within a minute or two heard something about a movie ticket giveaway, so i rang the station. didn't get through the first time and fiddled for a few seconds with the home phone to get the last number redial happening. thought i'd lost the opportunity cos it took me 2 or 3 goes to get it right, but the second call started ringing! and i got through... and won myself 4 tickets to a preview of the new hilary duff movie, raise your voice. lol... the guy asked if i was a fan, and i said not really :p but hey, a free movie is a free movie, and while this is probably not something i'd usually pay to go see, it also isn't something i'd avoid like the plague. actually, having spent some time looking through the site, i think i might enjoy the music in it at least :) so now all i need is to find some friends who might also enjoy such fare, and treat them to a free movie.

- - - - -

well now that i've gotten that out of my head, time to eat and get ready to make some dumplings later this afternoon! this will be my first real attempt at doing things from go to whoa - previously i've only assisted here and there when my parents were driving the show. i don't really have a proper recipe either... some helpers will come later to wrap and cook, so fingers crossed my preparation of ingredients doesn't go too badly (i'm not much of a cook, so i worry when i don't have precise directions!) anyways, if they turn out looking anything like these (not that i'm following her recipe/directions that closely), i'll be happy :D

Monday, November 29, 2004

roadworks progress

it seems i'm reduced to updating about the roadworks going on near my house. how boring. a fom who found out i blogged about this said i was weird. yes...

the roundabout taking shape... actually it's a bit of a hole in the ground which for a few days lay in wait for unsuspecting cars to drop into. the barriers on one side had been moved or just weren't placed properly, so if one got a bit too close...


i think this chicane is pretty much all completed. this is my favourite one cos you can pretty much pass through it at normal speed if you hold a good line :) kinda defeats the purpose of slowing vehicles down, but there's enough other devices on this stretch that i think one easy one is some compensation!

feeling of slow, fling of sti

isn't there even any straw for me to clutch at? pretty please?

*sigh*

sometimes i think i want to scream at the top of my lungs. maybe at the top of a mountain while the camera revolves around me, panning in and out (for dramatic effect, you understand). alas, i can barely manage to part my lips and begin to open my mouth. even when that does happen, the only thing that come out is a sigh (or a yawn!)

i want out something bad, but i don't think i'm going to get it.

it's funny how a lot of this is starting to look familiar. wasn't i here a few years ago?! now what wrong turn did i take to end up back here again...?

Saturday, November 27, 2004

a challenge more in my league

ok. i can live with not ranking amongst the google labs echelon. i know my place :p

so upon seeing this puzzle referred to on googleblog, i said to myself: you gotta be able to do that!

and that's the story of how i came to be, late one friday evening, sitting at home in front of my computer, trying to solve a puzzle (purely for the heck of it, you realise), before going to bed.

so now the challenge is - can YOU solve it? i don't know if there is more than one possible solution, and i'm pretty sure my solution fits the requirements... let's compare answers if you have one :)

- - - - -

the benefit paid from a single 30 minute visit to the dentist this morning has more than made up for my annual health insurance premium. mayhaps i'm in the wrong profession!

Friday, November 26, 2004

non google elite

no i don't think google would ever be interested in hiring me[1]... here's what i did instead[2]!


[1] after a bit more reading of the googleblog, i found the GLAT (google labs aptitude test), and thought i might have a chance at one or two of the questions (for when i'm feeling very mentally charged :p). a few more entries later, i find that i probably did well by standing around at the water's edge rather than jump straight in - people much more mathematically minded than me have answers that i mostly don't understand! oh well, interesting reading nevertheless :)


[2] brief exchange between myself and a colleague, who walked past while i was pulling bits and pieces out of old servers bound for the bin (after others had already been through and claimed the bigger hard drives)

scavenging mate?
yeah...
(pause)
might as well get something out of this place
too right!

so i walked away with a 20G hard drive, 7 PCI network cards, and a 52x CD-ROM - presumably all still working! pity there were no DVD drives, cos that's the next bit of hardware i'd consider adding to my PC. oh well... i'm sure i can find some use for these bits and pieces...

READY, (almost) SET, (but no) GO!

as i keep saying to whoever cares to ask, i am soooo ready to leave here. i just dont' care to do so without having something else lined up - not keen to return to being unemployed unless i absolutely can't help it.

at least the jobs i've been applying for aren't this difficult! though i'm mighty curious to see what awaits past the first gate, i don't think i feel smart enough to try :p

--

enjoyed the JFF movie on wednesday night. got a bit emotional towards the end - the girls all had a bit of a cry, but i stayed strong! haha. engaging story though... and thanks to lawry i now know a little bit more about the shinsengumi, adding some historical context to the movie.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

i suppose i shouldn't be surprised, but...

  1. it's hard "saying no" to what you like... :/
  2. google has its own blog!
  3. it looks like work has already started on the "other end of the road"... hmmm...
  4. it's been suggested to me that "it would be good if i didn't just concentrate on my work but try to help out the folks in another section... if i'm not snowed under" (my paraphrase, since i can't recall the exact words). riiight... let me be the judge of how much snow i perceive, eh?
  5. pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis is (supposedly) a real word, and was reported by a recent newspaper snippet to have appeared in a spelling contest involving 11-14 year old kids!
  6. a google search on the above term returns over 6000 hits! for this and other word oddities, click here.

oh well. i'm off to catch when the last sword is drawn at the japanese film festival tonight. hope it's good :)

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

lobotomise me!

i think too much. some of my friends also think i think too much. it sometimes sucks to think too much. thinking too much often goes hand in hand with being hurt, disappointed...

people who don't think (enough), often inflict the greatest pain. then there are those who maybe outdo me in the thinking stakes. that's a different, deliberate kind of pain. that pain you could understandably expect, because it's a conscious thing on the part of the inflicter. but the first type... that's they type that makes you scream WHY O WHY?

i don't know why i think so much. maybe i'm insecure. maybe i'm neurotic.

sometimes, it's probably because i care... too much. which is not always a good thing.

*sigh*

so, any budding neurosurgeons around? ;)

i don't care. i don't want to care.
it sucks, doesn't it?
what?
not caring.
...

Monday, November 22, 2004

law vs. grace

"Give and receive" is the language of grace (which depends on the work of God).
"Earn and achieve" is the language of law (which depends on the work of man).

extract from Day by Day by Grace

Thursday, November 18, 2004

not chinese enough!

had dinner at a chinese restaurant on the weekend, celebrating my parents' wedding anniversary. they left before us to attend a meeting, and us 'kids' then strolled to the counter to settle the bill. the lady gave us a bit of a discount, though we weren't really sure why. maybe it was because she didn't approve of our choice of dishes, cos my sister thinks she made a bit of a face upon looking at our bill, and then she told us something to the effect of

"the dishes you chose weren't very good/nice, next time you come, speak to the waiter in the black tie and ask him to recommend you some authentic chinese dishes..."

-_^

guess i'm a bit of a fake then eh? lol...

Sunday, November 14, 2004

while the sun shines...

the hay i make is deciding to pull off some snaps while driving past the roadworks ;)


two views of the (future) traffic circle on a T-junction (cross street is on the left in the first shot, and on the right in the second). they haven't started work on this yet, but you can see the yellow markings on road for where the structures are going to be built. note also the new lane markings visible in the second shot... previously most of the length of this road had no markings at all, now it's starting to look somewhat "proper"!

one of the chicanes. the red and white block things (no idea what the proper name for these things are) mark out the border of a section of the road that's been dug up. white dotted lines towards the sides denote lane boundaries, and yellow mark the new "kerb extensions". the latter two are somewhat faint in the photo.

don't know that i'll be able to quite get the desired "before and after" effect, given that all these shots were taken while travelling in a vehicle and thus harder to reproduce position/timing! oh well, one step at a time :)

Friday, November 12, 2004

*tick*

what does it say about you, when you derive so much satisfaction from solving a technical problem? geek? nerd? in need of a life? hehe... have been having this really annoying "problem" with my PC for ages now. when viewing many video files, whether in WMP or quicktime, they would have this propensity to go to full screen. not just the normal full screen like when you hit alt-enter in WMP, but the kind that doesn't let you quit or alt-tab or do anything else.

the first few times this happened i just ended up letting the video run its course. then i figured out i could kill the running video by pausing first, then alt-f4 (doing this while the video is running just kills other background applications). it's been annoying me no end and my previous few forays into the web for answers have come up empty.

i figured it's probably not an application setting, since it's doing it on more than one application and i don't see the same behaviour on other machines, plus i've been through the options many a times without finding anything that might be the culprit. this led me to glance sideways at my video card... i'm sure i tried googling for this before as well, but for some reason couldn't find anything until tonight! on a whim, i tried some new search term combinations, and... finally, reading a reply to someone else's Full Screen Video Problem, though not exactly the same issue, was close enough to get me where i needed.

J.O.Y.!

*ahem*

anyways, that's one item ticked off my to-do backlog :)

Thursday, November 11, 2004

calm yourself

recently there has been a noticeable rise in activity along the main street/road that connects the area in which i reside, to the closest major arterial road. lots of people standing in the middle of the road, marking the surface, measuring, and generally looking like something major is going down.

after passing by a few times on my drives to and from home, i realised that they're preparing to implement some traffic calming devices! well i guess that *would* slow down traffic on that road... ironically it's mostly wide enough for four lanes of traffic, but being in a suburban area has a 50km/h speed limit.

anyways, a quick google (to check my vocabulary) later, i think we're getting a traffic circle, two chicane-like things, and two speed humps. i briefly thought about going out on the weekend to snap the "before" of some before and after photos, showing the preparatory work and markings on the road, to be followed by shots of the devices upon completion. but i probably won't now that my weekend is starting to fill, and besides they've already started digging up the road.

was wondering why such devices would be required, cos the area is essentially one big no-through road, and so we only get local traffic. then i remembered that the other end of the road which is currently a dirt track, is going to be made into a proper thoroughfare. so i guess this is to discourage ratrunners... i hope they leave the other end of the road free of obstruction, that way i'll still have one way to reaching home (though it will only be convenient in some situations) without having to slow down and negotiate an obstacle course! doing this day in and day out is probably going to drive me nuts... oh well... not much i can do other than get over it... guess i'm just too used to, and comfortable with, the familiar :p

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

not-so-silly messenger

seeing a fom with a messenger nickname of "we're buying a toilet!!!", i just had to bite :p

me: umm... that's good news i presume??!
fom: very good news. we've been saving all semester to buy one.
me: does that mean you *didn't* have one before?
fom: no no. we have two of them in my house.
fom: my Bible study group has been "paying" to come all semester, and tonight we decided what we were going to spend the money we've raised on. we're spending the money on things from the TEAR "really useful gift catalogue", and buying a toilet for a poor community in a developing country.
me: *lightbulb*
me: cool.
me: tear is good
fom: yeah, they're great. and their gift catalogue is such a great idea...
...

fom: ... cause really, most of us don't "need" anything for birthday or christmas presents... and putting the money you would otherwise have spent on something superfluous into something that someone else really needs is awesome.
me: yeah. and u get a free card to use :p

- - - - -

now don't get me wrong, i don't shop at tear just for their free cards! but i have used their (arguably the world's most useful) gift catalogue a couple of times this year, and i quite like having a complimentary card to use to give to the person on whose behalf i have purchased some gifts. i usually dread shopping for gifts, as i usually have no idea what to buy. that's why i like gift registries and the like - i'd rather get something i know the other person wants/needs/can use/would like etc. lately there has been a bit of trend (at least among my friends who have gotten or are getting married, or in some cases major birthdays) to include an item like a tear donation on gift lists.

for one wedding earlier this year i picked out some items on behalf of my family, matching a cooking related item on the couple's gift list with a cooking related item from tear - one for you, one for them :)

last night a friend graduated from a TESOL course, so again i went to tear and chose a literacy gift to match the occasion. but of course i did this early enough to have the card ready in time for the actual ceremony ;)

Monday, November 08, 2004

it's like turning up at a party, and finding someone else with the same clothes!

sometimes you just want a bit of uniqueness.

a while ago i found that the CASE blog changed its layout/template - to the same one that i've been using since july.

today i find that another blog i've started reading has also just made the same change.

now i don't feel so special...

but i suppose that's what you get for picking a blogger supplied free template (and a nice one at that :p), and being either too lazy or unskilled (or both) to be able to come up with your own statement of individuality.

bah.

Sunday, November 07, 2004

puzzle this ring

i first came across a puzzle ring about a year ago, when i saw it on the finger of a friend who got one from NZ (i think). after fiddling with it for some time, i managed to figure out a solution, though it was neither all that elegant nor easily reproducible...

noticed that same friend playing with it yesterday afternoon, and thought i'd give it another go. to my increasing frustration, i could not recall the solution, and wasn't getting anywhere close to rediscovering it. even after seeing her solve it (very quick when you know how) twice, i still couldn't catch it.

been playing with it off an on all night (some of the people i had dinner with also gave it a go), and i'm as stuck as i was when i began. finally, i called on my old friend google - and was quite surprised at the variety of Puzzle Rings that you can get!

anyways i'm happy enough to solve the one i've borrowed (i don't think she realises i took it home with me :p), using this better illustrated solution.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

messenger silliness

snippet from a msn messenger conversation last night between me and a friend of mine:

fom: how u feeling now?
me: like a sine wave
fom: sine?
me: yeah
me: or cosine
me: same thing
me: almost
me: u would've done that in maths b i think
fom: hmm
fom: soudns familiar
fom: but forgot
fom: is it wavy?
fom: you are feeling wavy?!
me: basically. it's a repeating cycle... up and down
fom: like a girl
me: *skept*

(after a brief pause while my pc recovers from a spontaneous reboot)

me: so are u calling me a girl??
fom: no!
fom: yes!
me: i'm not a girl
me: not yet a woman...(*sings*)
fom: haha
fom: ur weird


- - - - -

yes... i suppose i am a little bit weird. doesn't that just make life a little bit more interesting though? :)

kopi kat capers

was digging around at home last night for a casesstte tape from years ago, trying to find a song that i had in my head. it's a chinese song based on (at least the start of) psalm 46, and the words came to me yesterday while i was feeling very low. i could only remember the first one or two lines, and got motivated to look for the tape so i could listen to the whole song.

coulnd't find it... haven't listened to tapes for soooo long! but i did manage to dig up a second kopi kat klan cassette which i forgot i had! so breakfast this morning was spent slurping porridge in the lounge room, reading the newspaper while kopi kat klan's "we're back!" played on the stereo...

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

twist and turn

it occurred to me that maybe i'm the moth, and it's my wings which are getting burned.

and the candles? well... either they keep shining or burn themselves up!

bleh! maybe you're asking: 什么废话?!

well... i don't know either. can't make head or tail of it all.

this feels really sucky. nice technical description that is...

- - - - -

i want to sigh, i want to cry
but all i can do is to stare awry

it's raining cats and blogs

ok maybe the hyperbole factor was turned up a little too high on that subject :p but yeah... found out that another person i know has started their own blog. this is like the third discovery in about 2 weeks (ie of people that i know recently starting their blogs). and here i was humming along for the past two years or so (since starting mine), thinking that i was the only person among my circle of friends and acquaintances who blogged (or even knew what a blog was!). actually there has been the odd discovery along the way, but this cluster of 3 are of people i actually see every week - though not necessarily talk to all the time - so it feels a bit more significant.

what useless information that was. i should sleep. tried doing that early-ish last night but ended up tossing and turning for a while which is a bit unusual - these days i am usually so tired/sleep deprived that i fall asleep relatively quickly. must be too many unresolved things floating in my head. was meaning to be in bed 90 mins ago but came across some stuff which i'm not really supposed to know... but read it, and in so doing did no favours to the fog soup in my brain...

i'm afraid that i'm like a candle to moths... come too close and your wings get burned. or worse.

should i stay up till my head starts hurting and i can't think anymore?

*yawns*

Sunday, October 31, 2004

procrastination

i'm in the middle of applying for jobs, and lost motivation... seeing as it's been a while since i posted any photos, the perfect procrastination excuse found me ;)

these are (the start of) some overdue pics from when i was in singapore almost a month ago... this particular set being from saturday 25 sep, when i attended a "mid-autumn festival" celebration held by the mt gerizim bible presbyterian church.

the chua chu kang bible centre building, which is actually home to 3 (or is it more?) churches. not quite sure how this works - this kind of setup is certainly unlike churches (and their buildings) that i'm accustomed to in australia.


the event began with a buffet - i had my share of the food early because i became one of the helpers (who had to eat early, before the guests proper arrived), even though it was my first time stepping foot into the place, and still being somewhat jet lagged and majorly sleep deprived after my overnight flight.


other items on the evening's agenda included things such as solving chinese riddles, a short talk by the church's pastor, some singing, song presentations, and this play (based on the prodigal son parable). notice the rear projection "screen", displaying background pics in time with the action on stage (which was actually all mimed to pre-recorded dialogue).

anyways, i was pretty pooped at the end of all that... which about wraps up day 1.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

so funny i forgot to laugh

i've just been shown a document that refers to my position in terms of being a manager. i suppose it's not a bad climb given that i started out a year ago as an assistant. funny thing is, my salary hasn't changed one single cent... and here they talk about rewarding those who prove themselves... pfft.

there's a variant of uno i sometimes play, where you can play a 'reverse' card on things like draw two's and draw four's. ie. the person before you may be dealing you a blow with a draw, but you can reverse it on them if you have the right card. i wished i had the right card... this would be such a sweet time to play it! (or am i just being too vengeful??)

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

what gives me happiness...

a night out with friends... 1 to go try street-o and have good conversation time, and after that with 2 others (+ one of their friends) for a few games of pool and some laughs.

now i'm ready for a nice sleep, and probably sore legs tomorrow!

Monday, October 25, 2004

going public with a gripe

ooh, i'm famous!

well... maybe not quite :p

but you can read about my story on the latest NotGoodEnough.org Top 10 gripes listing. (not sure how long the URL stays valid though).

ok back to finishing some work so i can go sleep!

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

24 take 4

ok forget the mountain lion business, get the real scoop on 24 at Ryan's Report. don't want to read *too* much cos it'll be a while yet (hopefully) before anything from season 4 screens here...

patience, young grasshopper.

ps. saw zatoichi. quite liked it. would watch it again for the tap dancing/rhythm bits :p

Monday, October 18, 2004

Rain...

我懷念有一年的夏天

一場大雨把你留在我身邊

我看著你那被淋濕的臉

還有一片樹葉貼在頭髮上面


那時我們被困在路邊

世界不過是一個小小屋簷

你說如果雨一直下到明天

我們就廝守到永遠


RAIN FALLING IN MY HEART

你的聲音仍然深印我心田

世界改變 你也改變 我在海角天邊

RAIN FALLING IN MY HEART

你的諾言雖然沒有實現

愛是雨點 落在昨天 永不放晴的纏綿

Friday, October 15, 2004

Rush River Cinema

gee i wished i found out about the Rush River Cinema a bit earlier, then i might have gone to see the last samurai... :/

oh well. off to see another samurai flick tomorrow... zatoichi!

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Heroic Forums

bleh... been spending too much time browsing the Heroic Cinema Forum Pages ever since i found that H-C had started forums. i even started my own thread... well, sort of... hehe. but oh i haven't gotten anything done tonight! (except going to watch AvP :p)

bleh... but at least i found out that the 8th japanese film festival (see pdf flyer) is coming soon :)

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

CTP Premium Calculator

october is a big month of expenses... car rego and insurance are due then. just about to pay my rego and thought i'd take a quick squizz on google to see if my current CTP insurer is giving me a good price before i fork over my money, and came across this handy little page: CTP Premium Calculator

if you get there fast enough you might spot a typo in the "title" of that page... let's see how quickly their web monkeys respond to my email :)

incidentally, yes my current insurer is giving me the best price. not that there's much variance in the offerings... oh well good to know nevertheless!

Thursday, September 16, 2004

see the original!

read in the latest cinebuzz newsletter that hollywood has released a remake of 'shall we dansu?', called (surprise, surprise) 'shall we dance?'. reading some of the imdb forum threads, i'd have to agree that there's no real point in remaking what was already a great movie...

while i might not feel as passionate about any anti-hollywood sentiments, i do recommend that anybody who rushes out to see this movie (whether through love of dance, richard gere, jennifer lopez, or just cos they had nothing better to see...?!), make an effort to view the original. sure you might not find it in your local video shop, but wait around for sbs to show it again (i've seen it screened twice).

and if you need your appetites whet for foreign films, take yourself along to the free korean film festival about to tour the country.
2004 Korean Film Festival

yeah, baby! :)

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

ahhh... you big mouth!

ironic, isn't it?

having "opened my mouth" to gripe about my job/wages, i'm now going to lose it! (i mean the job, not my mouth :p)

so there i was yesterday morning, cruising along as per normal... get up for a toilet break, and when i come back to my desk i find a note stuck to my monitor telling me that my section has a meeting with our manager, like now! wondering why the snap meeting and still blissfully unaware of the impending news, i take myself to the meeting room, and find out that "... your previous role is being eliminated in the company restructure taking place today."

ok so they are offering me a new role internally (which is more than could be said for a few others colleagues). it's a role which was previously advertised internally, and about which i did make an initial inquiry. but i did not feel it was a suitable role, and went no further. so now i'm facing unemployment vs said role.

said role is skilled, and should be a step up... but the only money promise i've received is that i won't be getting any pay cuts - which sounds suspiciously like i'll be getting the same pay, for doing more work.

mighty tempting, ain't it?

yeah that's what i thought...

Monday, September 06, 2004

raspberries... to virgin cc?

i applied for a virgin credit card a while back. they rejected me.

today i find out from APESMA that they've renegotiated with AMEX, and can now offer a better deal to its members. i'm still using APESMA's previous CBA VISA gold card, but it's going to stop being free (hence being replaced by AMEX) so i'm going to stop using it. so now the AMEX card is now free of annual fees and rewards program fees... only downside being the perceived lower acceptance level of AMEX vs. eg VISA. my parents got AMEX a while back, but half the time they end up paying for stuff on my sister's VISA (and reimbursing her later) cos their AMEX isn't accepted where they need to use it.

anyways, i wonder whether my virgin cc application was rejected because i already have a credit card with a $10,000.00 limit... the rejection letter said something about some obligation or whatnot about not pushing people into (situations where they can incur) more financial debt.

or maybe it's the fact that i don't earn enough for their liking i mean their criteria of being a responsible lender... there's a box on the AMEX card application that asks if i earn more than $40k... it's one of four questions grouped under "if you can answer 'YES' to these questions, you may qualify for the Card."

hmm...
well...
umm...
that would be a noooooo... not quite!
*sigh*... actually it's not even close...

pooh to my $51.83-per-week-above-the-just-revised-minimum-wage job. maybe i need to redirect that raspberry...

Saturday, September 04, 2004

abandonment?

what are you supposed to feel when you're out with a bunch of friends, you all stop to look at something, and two minutes later you turn around and they've all disappeared from sight?! one slightly sour note on an otherwise pleasant and enjoyable night out, entertaining friend(s of a friend) from sydney.


dinner at MJ's (at the holiday inn in town) - another entertainment book venue. the lamb shanks i had were quite nice :) yep i decided to venture away from my standard of chicken!


followed by a spot of karaoke. everytime i go to karaoke, i end up wishing i could sing better... cos i realise/am reminded that i can't! oh well... stick to the car and the shower i think :p


then we had a pit stop at a video arcade, where we took turns playing this "para para somethingorother" game involving the co-ordination of hand movements to "instructions" on screen. the photo doesn't quite tell the story... but i don't have the space to store the few video clips i took.

Thursday, September 02, 2004

SWANS @ the Indian Taj Mahal

an every-so-often meeting of the SWANS at the Indian Taj Mahal in new farm. according to the man who's recently had his share of authentic indian fare while in england, this was not quite up to scratch... it's about the fourth time i can remember that i've been to an indian restaurant - and i don't think the rate will quicken any. not that i thought it was bad, but just not my favourite taste i guess.


we had the deluxe banquet, and these were the entrees to start


the SWANS


(most of) the mains - the food certainly looks nice and colourful - and we were all quite full at the end... with leftovers remaining.

Saturday, August 28, 2004

the wait is over!

received my new toys in the post yesterday :D ie the dell axim and swisstech tools:



haven't really had time yet to play around with the axim, but i'm aiming to migrate from the loaner revo to the axim in the next week or so. the swisstech tools i've added to my keyring, making it noticeably bulkier and heavier!

- - - - -

am working on a dedicated photo blog, but it's taking longer than i expected. maybe if i had a bit more html know-how to tweak and customise the defaults 'hello' serves up - perhaps the whole photoblogging thing isn't quite as fantastic as i first though :p still, it's pretty good. and it's free. that's hard to beat!

- - - - -

i've played sports twice in one week! that's gotta be rare as far as the past few years have gone... badminton last sunday afternoon (just a bit of a casual backyard affair), and basketball today (a few slightly less casual games with people who usually play 'seriously'). i'm feeling tired and sore... and my head hurts a bit too (but that might partly be due to sleep deprivation from the last few days... or should i say months!)

am currently waiting for my turn to get a (hopefully) relaxing massage from my dad :)

Friday, August 27, 2004

almost there...

it's nearly 5pm... i'm still finishing my sandwich from lunch.

one more day of flying solo next week, then hopefully i can relax a bit more!

watched hero last night on dook's wall... the ad-hoc home theatre didn't work too badly :p interesting movie... think i'll delve into the rest of the dvd while it's still sitting in house. as someone commented, zhang ziyi probably didn't really need to be in the movie... but she does contribute nicely to the scenery ;)

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

pump, by coco-cola amatil

i have a bottle of "pump" (purified, ozonated water); its taste reminds me of coconut.

i'm in a bit of a ghost town at the moment - supervisor's away for a week, other people who have desks in this area are all away/out on site somewhere. it's so quiet...

we have a new general manager though... funnily enough he comes from the same place where i had my first job! not that i recognised his name...

i heard that my immediate manager is wondering if i'm happy, and whether i'm looking for other jobs. what should i say? hmm... la-di-dah... guess i should get on with doing some work.

Monday, August 23, 2004

shopping spree

in the last week or so, i have spent

  • $1100 for plane tickets to singapore
  • ~$570 for a new axim x30 with 2 years complete care cover - i can drop it or wet it to my heart's content (i mean accidentally, of course!), but no losing it or having it stolen :o
  • ~$35 for a utili-key and micro-tech tool set. ever since losing my nifty eyeglass screwdriver tool last month (the screw-in design means it can be a bit too prone to coming loose from the attachement), i've been tossing up between getting a replacement from sunglass hut (it's included in a $17.95 "care pack" thing), or going for a utili-key that i saw at thinkgeek at around about the same time of my loss. sure i could have bought it from them then and there, but at USD$10 for a key and almost double that again for shipping, i thought i'd look around. which is when i found them on ebay, and finally settled on the key + tool set for about USD$25 including shipping.

the key/tool set was meant as a little birthday treat for myself. the PDA is an unexpected bonus :p (and the air tickets were a prior commitment.) anyways, that's like a whole month's wages in my current job... don't i feel poor now!

plus i'm yet to get my lil' paws on any of these items... hmm...

*twiddle thumbs*

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Put Your Hope In The Lord

Lord, out of the depths I cry
Lord, hear my voice
Hear my cry for mercy
If you were to show to me
A record of sin, O Lord who could stand?
My soul waits for the Lord
More than the Morning

Put your hope in the Lord,
His unfailing love
He will redeem you for sure
And lift you up
He will forgive you for your sin
And he will comfort you
Put your hope in God, the Lord!

© 2000 Mark Peterson (lyrics to a song based on Psalm 130)

grey clouds

feeling a sudden onset of emotions, i scurry to the bathroom.
hands on my face as i cry, i hear the drop of tears on the sink.
boy the tears must really be flowing!

roused by the vibrating phone, i fumble in my pocket to retrieve.
composing my breath to answer, i take the short call and realise:
it's the tap that's been doing the dripping!

the capacity to find humour amidst sorrow - is that a good sign?!

- - - - -

yes i do value correct spelling served with goodly portions of useful punctuation. however i shall retain the prerogative to blog in lower case and flout grammatical rules/conventions at my fancy. you can eat my blog or leave, a blog which btw is now decked out with the blogger navbar in signature blogger blue. the search function doesn't seem to be working... yet?

- - - - -

more on the (anti)-phishing front. good resource, but am rather doubtful they'll ever achieve their motto. there are simply too many ignorant people in the world for that to happen.

Monday, August 16, 2004

children of the revolution

home from a full-on weekend of BLT, head still bulging with information and thoughts about the future and growth of chinese churches in brisbane. then spent half of last night "wrestling" with my revo in the hopes of making it better, but it had the opposite effect (see below). tried to get an early night's sleep but twice woke up following rather vivid bad dreams (not quite nightmares). which is a bit odd, given that i don't often dream (or if i do, i'm usually not aware of them!).

- - - - -

i suppose i should be thankful that it's lasted this long. after the last few tear-my-hair-out-in-frustration episodes, my revo did seem to settle down. almost a year on however, it has thrown another tantrum. this time, with a little help from it's owner, the tantrum has been accompanied by a towel... :/

so i'm eyeing off one of the latest model dell axims - the x30. the only other contender is an older model x5 going on ebay and currently sitting on about $200 less than the price of a new x30. think i'll sleep a few nights on this one. meanwhile, thanks to the power of (lamenting one's plight via) msn names, i should be getting a loaner revo tonight that will tide me over until i've transitioned to something more permanent.

Friday, August 13, 2004

vocation?

i spent half of this morning doing something my manager asked me to do. i was asked to do it because the person who was supposed to do it is away sick. more than halfway through, i discover it had been done already.

now i'm sitting here trying to fill out my performance review form, and having to think about how i rate myself and what "successes" i've had in various fields.... bleh.

so i took a break to read from boundless, and am now mentally tossing around the idea of how 'Frederick Buechner wrote that we discover our vocation at the intersection of our own deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger'...

one thing immediately springs to mind as to where the world's deep hunger lies. where lieth my own deep gladness?

Thursday, August 12, 2004

afterburn

posting a photo cos i can... and it's so easy :p

this shot was taken about a month ago to commemorate a mammoth effort of burning bonanza. 3 months in the making (mostly because i didn't have time!), the photo shows my output of 103 burned CDs - thanks in large part to a CD copying tower i borrowed which sped things up significantly once i made my master copies. i even went to the effort of making professional looking labels! but they're quite fiddly... sure beats writing it all out by hand though!



don't worry, i didn't infringe any copyright laws... the CDs were produced from recordings i made of the talks from our church camp in april. this was before i had my jukebox, so it was a time consuming process of real time recording of the source on MD, real time analog transfer to a PC, and subsequent editing. not that the jukebox had replaced my MD recorder yet - i've not been satisfied with the input levels on the unit so am sticking with my MD as my primary recorder for the time being. but at least i can use the jukebox to record stuff from the MD and transfer the wav file to my PC digitally. it might be an extra step but it frees up my PC from being tied up with focussing on sound recording.

will get the chance to road test both MD and jukebox recording this weekend at the BLT conference. then i can compare the results and see how i can best use the jukebox. more work to add to my pile! hrm...

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

hello photoblogging! yeah!

hooray! i've got photoblogging happening!

here are a few selected photos from my recent trip to sydney... click to see larger.


the entree: upon arrival, a quick pit stop at a newly opened krispy kreme doughnut shop... here you can see part of the 'conveyor belt' of doughnut production happening behind a perspex(?) wall. if you stand near the front counter long enough the staff usually offer you samples, so i contemplated just taking the samples we got given, and leaving! after all... i only wanted to try a sample... :p


the main course: watching the lion king at the capitol theatre. what a treat! pity they didn't allow photos inside the venue...


the dessert: a mid afternoon snack at the cho dumpling king in chinatown. this place was quite packed for 2:30 in the afternoon - we waited nearly half an hour to be seated. small, very cosy, and yeah pretty nice food :)

- - - - -

man i don't know if this is just the novelty speaking but this photoblogging thing is so cool! i love it :D suits me almost to a tee... if i'm still feeling keen later on i might go and post up some other stuff from the last few months, although doing too much post-dated stuff feels somewhat at odds with my perception of the spirit of blogging :p

two years on...

it was about two years ago that this blog started... for the past few days i've been wanting to do a birthday entry - that being one of the opening posts of this nebolocity. have been putting it off due to a lack of time and enthusiasm, but now that i'm sitting here on the tail end of a public holiday... :)

actually i went back and re-read some of the entries from august 2002, and it kinda struck me that some things don't seem to have changed that much. or maybe it's more that they've resurfaced? which in some sense accounts for the lack of a celebratory spirit last friday...


  • i wore black; black top, black pants. the funereal colour perhaps spoke of how i was feeling leading up to, and on the day. i did have a white t-shirt underneath - this had my name (in chinese) on it, so that was for me. ironically enough the character can and usually does mean something to do with "happy"...
  • on thursday afternoon, my manager and supervisor were having a chat, in the middle of which their voices went hushed. i heard something about bringing in food for morning tea the next day, and i wondered if they were talking about me/my birthday. as my supervisor left for the day, she mentioned to me that we'd be having cake the next day for [another colleague]'s birthday. then i recalled that yes i think do share the same birthday as another guy at work. ok... maybe mine will go quietly at work... and for the first hour or so it was like that. but then my manager found out from HR that it was my birthday as well, and not long after HR sends out an email announcing the birthdays for friday and the adjacent weekend, so that was the end of any secrecy. our section had some cake and pikelets, which went down quite well :)
  • the previous night, "bruce" was the first to wish me an early happy birthday over msn. she tried to arrange to take me out, but we couldn't find a concurrent free slot from our respective schedules, so chalk up another one for busy-ness.
  • actually, even earlier that night, algae asked what i was doing the next evening, and seemed mildly surprised when i said "nothing"... truth was i didn't really feel like organising for anything to happen, but wouldn't have been against something happening.
  • before spf left to return overseas, she left a gift for me. she actually tried to hide her, but i caught her out :p anyways i had strict instruction not to open it until my birthday... and at about midnight (friday morning) i rang her. she wanted to be the first to wish me happy birthday on my birthday, and then told me to go get the present and open it...
  • during the day on friday i received smses, emails, msn messages and a couple of e-cards from friends. some of the funnier/more memorable happenings were:
    • had been chatting to dckt, who was saying he wanted gmail. i told him he needs someone in the loop, and he said he was out of the loop. moments later i asked him what address he wanted his gmail invite sent to, and he was soon in the loop. later on he realises it's my birthday, and feels bad for not remembering... and that it was i who had given him a gift :p
    • also received a call from aunty M, who rang my mum at home to get my work/mobile number. totally unexpected and a pleasant surprise... funny how a friend's mum remembers before the friend...!
    • x2 with another friend and friend's mum, but this time the mum only found out because she sent me an invite to be on her birthdayalarm birthday book... on my actual birthday itself! oh the irony and timing...
    • i became the beneficiary of a fairly impromptu visit from some friends, who came over for an anime (i finally got around to watching patlabor! pity it wasn't as engaging as i thought it might be) and some desserts. i believe i have the shtes to thank for that kind gesture :)

so anyways this is just a bit of a catch up post. there's more in my head but thus far it shall remain beyond the realms of nebulocity. going to try to get some photoblogging happening now... will give me something to feel productive about!

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

not phishworthy at all... which is a good thing!

haven't been reading other blogs lately, but now that my lunch times are a bit more free... :)

and so i found out about The MailFrontier Phishing IQ Test and decided to test myself to see how much of a sucker i might be to phishing scams, and to my relief i scored 100%! 100% meaning i correctly differentiated between legitimate and fraudulent emails in all the test cases presented. good to know i'm safe for another day... if only the rest of life were this 'easy'!

Sunday, August 01, 2004

flatlining vs. fattening

tired.
weary.
lethargic.
apathetic.
and rather can't-be-bothered like.

it's not just because i've been on holidays, though the thought of returning to work tomorrow doesn't quite fill me with anything close to resembling excitement..

- - - - -

where did the extra 2 inches and 5 kilos come from? take it back! please return to sender... with interest :p

Saturday, July 31, 2004

re the batt

so i ended up getting my car battery replaced last week, and what a drama it was! firstly i wanted to confirm whether it was the car battery at fault, before pulling out my wallet. so i did two things after work on friday:
  1. took the battery out of one of our other cars (it was the same model battery except the terminal polarities were reversed) to test in my car. my car started fine, lending weight to the theory that it was indeed my battery at fault.
  2. went to a local toyota service centre (which thankfully opens till midnight) to get my battery tested. it turns out that it's my original battery (as i suspected), which means it's been going for almost 5 years! not that i know anything about car batteries, but that's a pretty good run. and the battery itself still seemed ok - just flat.

deciding to cut my losses there and then, i opted to buy a new one (and covered by warranty) rather than push my luck with the old one.

next morning... i'm off to the shops around 9am, hitching a ride with my mum while she did some shopping. all the fitment guides i had come across (eg from marshall batteries, the hardcopy guide at the shop, and also the exide website) told me to buy a P305D battery for a 1999 model toyota echo. so naturally that's the one i bought. lucky for me that k-mart was having a sale so i got the battery at 25% off and had change from a $50 note.

came home, started to put the new battery in my car, and lo and behold the terminals are the wrong size!!! i was not happy... surely it couldn't be that difficult?! a few phone calls later, i went back to k-mart for a refund. then one of the shop floor managers came out and called in a guy from the tyre and auto shop, and i ended up taking a P305A battery which was the same as the D but with bigger terminals that were the correct size for my car. the cashier was mildly surprised when i pulled out the exact change (which i had gotten 5 mins earlier via my refund) from my pocket...

and so 3 hours after i first left the house i had a working car again.

if you have any car troubles, don't call me - you'll be better off for my non-involvement!

oh and during my musical batteries operation on friday night, i managed to drop the spanner twice, shorting the terminals. the first time was on my dead (but not fully fully dead) battery, so i just knocked it off which i'm not so sure if it was such a smart thing to do... second time round was on a fully juiced up unit, so i thought twice about using my bare hands and looked for something else with which to knock the spanner loose. meanwhile the metal was getting nicely cooked, and so i wrapped it with a towel to continue using. but i wasn't careful enough and gave myself a bit of a burn on my left thumb when i gripped the spanner and found a non-covered area.

like i said, probably best that i stay away, well away ;)

Friday, July 30, 2004

crossfire casualty

it was the best of times, it was the worst of times... i'm back at 'bochim', and feel at a loss for words.

usually, if you think you are able to help, you should. but sometimes, you may end up causing more damage... and hurt those you are trying to help. and you yourself do not leave the gauntlet unscarred.

where is wisdom?

Friday, July 23, 2004

turnstiles

a bunch of miscellanea...

  • just realised that this is/will be my 200th post!
  • dates for the miyazaki showcase sessions in brisbane are up, though i've seen most of them so not sure if i'd pay for a repeat viewing
  • the 13th brisbane international film festival kicks off next week! it starts the same day as my annual leave - taking a few days off for some r&r, though i'm not sure how much of the former i'll be able to have! hope to fit in an APAC movie or more during the festival's season.
  • went to a newly opened restaurant last night, the malaya corner. some observations/comments:
    • not long after we sat down there came the sound of dropped dishes from the kitchen
    • one of the drinks we ordered wasn't actually on the menu, so the waitress came back to change it... but ended up adding a valid drink and not cancelling the invalid one
    • then a drink and two or three dishes came to our table that we didn't order
    • another dropped dish just next to us, with a decent chunk of a broken plate not picked up for a good 5 minutes (it took the boss to pick this up)
    • one of the diners at my table works for the city council, and had a hand in approving the kitchen facilities at this joint - the boss recognised her and promptly served up 3 additional complimentary snacks for her
    • one of our dishes (the place serves individual meals and snacks) still didn't come a good while after everything else was served, so we had to chase this up
    • then another dropped item - waiter clearing up a table to our side dropped a drink, spilling the remaining contents and ice. he wiped the table top, but not the side where the drink had run over to the floor. then when he came back and bent over to pick up the ice from the floor, stuff fell from his pocket. he went to pick this up, and more stuff came out. and a third time... oh and he kept pulling up his pants like they were falling off!
    • when we went to pay, the cashier wouldn't do a split bill. i think she said they were too busy. one of waiters came to divided up the bill for us while we waited on one side. this took ages because he couldn't get it to tally, partly because of the invalid drink that was never cancelled, and partly because he miscalculated a subtotal. after i stepped in to correct his sums, it was all good. the cashier was still arguing about some point or other, but in the end we paid our money. in all that time i think she served one other customer/table (which is not to say that the place wasn't busy - it was well patronised - but it wasn't like there was a rush of people to pay, and just about every other small-medium eatery are happy to do split bills without kicking up a fuss...)
    • having said all this, the servings were huge (both food and drink), and i think everyone enjoyed their food. i'd go back again, but hope that their service lifts a notch.
  • my car wouldn't start this morning... don't know what's wrong yet but probably the battery... i suddenly feel so much less independent without a car to get around. have i been too spoilt by this luxury?
  • i'm getting fat. i don't like it!

Monday, July 19, 2004

又哭了

but this time, 掉的眼泪只有一滴。

i don't know which is worse.

i hate and fear what i seem to be becoming. 我不想变成一个 calloused and hardened 的人。

总之。。。 我不能怪别人 - 做错的是我。

神阿,开恩可怜我这个罪人

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

turning over a new leaf

well, maybe not quite :p

but a new look for a new half-year, or a new financial year, or a new month, or just because i finally got around to it!

of course, i can take no credit for the design, having pinched a standard template from blogger's offerings and tried to do some minor customisation.

so yeah, new template and comments system is in play from hence forth. think i'll keep all past posts as is, unless i happen to have a need to republish the whole site...

anyways... feels good to be able to tick *some*thing off my to-do list cos it's been starting to feel like i've not been achieving accomplishing anything much lately. so, next on the agenda: photoblogging! and yes, i will get around to dong that. eventually! and especially now that the site i was using to host my albums is starting to charge money... :/


ps. leaf, green... geddit?? ok nevermind...

Monday, June 28, 2004

how long did that take?

what can you do with a one hour lunch break

go home, watch an episode of 24, come back to work. pretty darn good effort i thought :p

- - - - -

in other news, came across this "petals around the rose" puzzle, and according to the background, i must be very very not smart, cos my first hypothesis was correct... :|

reminds me of other silly games/puzzles with their not always so obvious solutions (some of which took me a lot longer to figure out!) like

- black magic/white magic
- what time is it now? (and similar)
- this is a circle, right or wrong?
- bang bang bang who died?

oh the hours of fun you can have with people straining their brains out to try to figure out the solution! (it's almost sadistic :p)

Friday, June 25, 2004

Decidedly Very Dear

DVDs, that is :p

local video store was having a sale of "pre-viewed" movies etc, so i went to have a browse of the DVDs. realised before i arrived at the shop that i had forgotten my wallet, and didn't really want to come back for a second trip, but thought what the heck i'll have a look anyways. spotted the two-disc special editions of daredevil and the hulk, both being movies i had been intending to watch but never got around to...

$19.90 each... hmm... that's a pretty good price for a DVD (plus a fistful of special features - just the kind of stuff i look for in a DVD release) right? too bad i can't pay for them... oh well, maybe i'll have to come back a second time after all.

meanwhile, back on the net, i decide to try to find out how much these babies go for retail-wise. lo and behold, with a bit of investigating (mostly thanks to my good friend google), i discover that i can get the daredevil dvd for $21.95, and the hulk for $21.42. that's brand spanking new, and inclusive of postage.

yes, i think i'll pay an extra $3.57 for the "upgrade"! and after a bit more digging for some reviews to satisfy myself that the special features are worth watching, i'm plonking down the old credit card!

google - your favourite shopping companion and guide... good thing i didn't have my wallet with me :)

more timing tales and other miscellanea

was looking into virgin credit cards online (searching around for an alternative, cos my current freebie will stop being a freebie by year's end) sunday night, and i receive a personalised application from you guess who in monday's mail! something about them having a birthday and putting 8 $15,000.00 adventures up for grabs. so i applied :)

won an autographed maroons origin jersey from aami a few weeks back. missed out on the grand prize of 20 tickets to game 2, but catching the second half on tv with friends while wearing my prize was good enough. then i went and sold it, being the big league fan that i'm not.

- - - - -

the letter from the ATO about superannuation co-contributions has been sitting on my desk for a while, until i finally got around to doing something about it. little did i realise all the to-ing and fro-ing that would need to take place, in order for me to make a contribution to my own super fund. sheesh... but i suppose it's worth it when you get a "free" $1000.00!

- - - - -

currently sucking down a strawberry and banana shake from teaz.com - no idea where the actual shop is cos the drink was given to me... tastes kinda strange but i'm sure it's doing my body some good... ??

- - - - -

got to play with a friend's new ixus 500 the other night - niiiice... i like! smaller and lighter than my 330, and with slightly better features/specs. haven't been to shops to see street prices, but $500+ from ebay (direct import from japan) vs. $899 RRP local pricing. tough choice... heh

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

timing is everything

like...

when you go spend some hard-earned cash at koorong adding more "must read" books to your collection (and a katinas CD that's quite growing on me), and two days later receive notification that they're having a one week storewide 15% off sale...

or when you open your eyes in the morning, thinking "hmmm that was a refreshing sleep, and i've even woken up before my alarm went off", and then reaching to look at the time, wondering how much longer you can relax in bed, and realising that the figure is a significant negative...

or feeling like the "just when you thought it was safe to go back in the ocean" and *cue jaws theme music*

or sometimes wishing you had access to something like a time turner!

Saturday, June 05, 2004

going polar

actually that title is quite misleading and inaccurate. but it's what first popped into my head and i like it enough to keep it - with some clarifications :p

1. polar implies cold. the first few days of winter have actually been warmer than the last few days/weeks of autumn. apparently something about a cold snap ending on the first day of winter. how ironic!

2. the reason i thought about polar was bears hibernating in winter. but then i realised that polar bears don't hibernate! oh well. i feel a bit like i've been hibernating cos i've been sleeping the last 12 hours or so (mostly bcos i'm so tired from hardly sleeping the night before!). i've been up for about an hour, and decided to get out of bed because it wasn't looking like i was going to get back to sleep anytime soon.

now my feet are cold... and i think i'll catch up on some video viewing before a nice warm shower and starting my fullish looking day.

*yawns*

Monday, May 31, 2004

that took a bit too long...

finally, after more than two months, my sara groves CD has arrived! not very good service i must say... the 2 attempts i made at contacting the supplier during this extended wait resulted in one black hole and one autoresponder. i guess i should be happy that at least the goods did arrive... forgot to check whether it's actually autographed, cos the item i ordered is supposed to be. hmm... but it's in the car, and i can't be bothered going to check... and it feels like it's been sooooo long since i last blogged from home!

Friday, May 28, 2004

you know your imagination is running too wild when...

you've just finished watching the day after tomorrow (which, on one level, is all about extreme weather conditions), step outside into the carpark, notice the somewhat unusually cool and windy evening, and your mind goes "uh-oh..." !!

i very much want to get some photoblogging happening, but don't have time to look into it yet :(

well, two months on, i've ended up with a second hand nomad jukebox 3 for recording purposes - no more (until the Hi-MD stuff finally gets released) realtime transfers from an MD to the PC! and with firewire to boot :) well, that's the aim of the whole exercise anyway... yet to really field test.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

surprise

i had no idea where we were going - she wouldn't say. even when she started looking in the refidex to make sure she knows where to turn etc. i gleaned that it was somewhere down the coast. that narrows it down a lot... not!

i was required to dress 'up' (my usual workwear of tee/polo, jeans and sneakers weren't going to cut it! :p), and even when we were less than 5 minutes away i was still clueless as to our destination. actually, even when we did arrive, i still wasn't sure what lay ahead... we were late, which made for a little bit of tension, but got there without too much drama. she brought me to dracula's for a night of food and entertainment. it was also an opportunity to see the sort of thing that some of the students of the creative industries might produce/be involved in, ie a glimpse into / taste of her (academic) world...

quite an interesting night... certainly an atypical experience for me. surprise indeed :)

Monday, May 24, 2004

of heroes and wise men

maybe i'm too bloodthirsty(?!), but there wasn't enough fighting sequences in troy. still, nice enough celluloid eye candy i suppose.

speaking of greek mythology and the like, came across this site, winged sandals, described as "a very stylish Flash-based introduction to Greek mythology, courtesy of the University of Melbourne Centre for Classics and Archaeology and ABC online." looks quite well done, and i'm sure to be back when i need an amusing diversion :)

funnily enough it was on the associates section of the CASE site where i made the discovery. lots of reading goodness at CASE... the stuff to make the old mental cogs click and turn with effort.

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

so much for that idea!

1. re: previous post.
might be an idea if i ever got on the blog once in a while these days! but i feel quite AWOL-ish.

2. playing with the cap on my highlighter, snapping in on and off while on the phone to a customer.
2 minutes later i look down on my desk and notice this damp looking pink thing. for a moment there i thought it was a bit of chalk that had been soaked or something, and was wondering how the heck did something like that get there?! then it dawned on me that i'd snapped the tip off my highlighter...

and someone's taken off with my small pad of post-it notes! how rude...

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

test

blogger has changed! ehh... and there are comments, but i can't get it to work :( not that anyone ever really comments, but it's the principle of the thing ;) oh well... guess i'll stick to enetation for now, and play with this later... might go the whole hog and change layout too!

Friday, May 07, 2004

alright, anime!

'miyazaki showcase' plus 'takahata and other classics', coming soon to a capital city near you :) click here for details.

- - - - -

saw kill bill vol. 2 a few nights ago - not enough fighting! :p will be waiting for the DVDs to be released :)

speaking of DVDs, my copy of the collectors edition of the hire arrived in the post this week too. haven't had a chance to watch it though... have seen them all in WMP format but would be nice to see and hear through the DVD/stereo :)

ooh look at that, it's time to go home... time to make like a tree and leave!

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

stoic?

there's a lump in my throat as i consider my response when my supervisor asks me if i'm alright. do i wear my heart on my sleeve? is it that obvious? i can shrug it off, put on a smile and say yeah i'm fine. but i'm not. why does thinking about it make me want to cry again? twice in one day? surely this has never happened before??

i'm really not a person who cries easily. not that i never shed tears, but sometimes i think i am lacking something emotionally - i have at times wanted to cry or felt like crying, yet found no tears forthcoming.

so, does the fact that i *did* cry about/over something, imply that the something is rather significant? there's probably irony too, in that it happened in front of a relative stranger... (relative because you could say we've only known each other for about a week, yet in other ways our friendship feels deeper than others that are years older.)

i don't know. i think that's all i can say with any certainty.
i don't know. too many questions remain. questions which may never be answered.
i don't know. maybe they don't need to be answered.

i don't know.

Friday, April 30, 2004

Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.

from a humour email forward... filed under "great truths about growing old". it's meant to be funny/a joke, but i wonder whether the last few days in my life has seen my age being somewhat lonesome.

- - - - -

i'm quite tired, having slept a combined total of around 15-16 hours in the past 3 nights. i have probably spent about the same number of hours, within that same timespan, talking to and being with one person.

here i must resort to the cliched sounds of "it's (probably) not what you think". and if i were you, i doubt i could guess it in a million years (ooh... hyperbole *and* more cliches! hallmarks of the literary output of the half brain-dead? :p)

oh i'm hesitant to say more, other than that the past few days have been quite out of the ordinary. anyways, to paraphrase the gumpster: nebulous is as nebulous does :p

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

when one door closes another window opens

who would have thought that this saying could be applied in both the figurative and a literal sense to msn messenger IM windows :p

pity there had to be a closed door at all... oh well!

- - - - -

one of the girls in my bible study group is playing in the orchestra for her ex high school's amateur (but apparently semi-professional!) production of west side story. being the cultural ignoramus that i am, i thought it would be nice to go check it out. also thought it would be a smart idea to go with at least one other person, so that if i have to look ignorant i won't be alone in that endeavour :p other option is to go with someone who isn't nearly as ignorant, and feel safe/secure in their company... hehe.

for insurance (and self education), did a bit of reading into west side story... plot synopsis and lyrics. now i feel a little bit less ignorant :)

- - - - -

signed up to test drive google's new gmail service - sounds like an interesting (not to mention useful?) premise! also noted that a fair few of the keyboard shortcuts are strangely familiar (traces of pine and vi navigational similarities in there). wonder whether that was deliberate homage...

Monday, April 26, 2004

kudos to microsoft

giving away free Windows Security Update CDs?? while not a cure/solution, it's at least a better and more useful band-aid...

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

so this is what the pros get up to...

insightful article on sports illustrated's digital workflow - a glimpse into the world of pro digital photography and what happens after they take their gigabytes-full of shots!

Monday, April 19, 2004

back in the saddle again

i guess the past week (of work) wasn't too bad - it wasn't overly busy so nothing too stressful, and in the end not as daunting as i thought it might have been. the regular person returned today, so i did a bit of handover this morning and now i'm back in my regular seat.

question is: do i want to be back? hmm...

came across a part time job opportunity on the weekend. threw in my application, and part of the process asked the question "why do you want to work part-time"? maybe it's something i haven't given sufficient thought to, but at the moment it feels like a very ambivalent[1] issue.

[1] for the longest time, i had always thought the word 'ambivalent' meant something similar to neutral, in a nonchalant sort of sense. but it actually means something fairly different.

- - - - -

and now for the silver lining story of the day:

never did locate the CD containing the creative recorder program for my creative soundcard... which put a sizeable dent in my plans to dedicate the spare PC to recording tasks. but, the apparent setback (had already been unsuccessful in an earlier search for an alternative wav recorder that was both decent and free) had a good result, cos it forced me to take another look at audacity, which i recently came across via APCmag. and i'm actually finding it to be a rather useful little program!

still, it's a time consuming process of recording and editing. an uploading recorder ranks fairly high on the wish list :p

- - - - -

realising that the last few times i've gone to KGCC, that i'm usually too braindead to listen effectively, and don't have much energy left to want to socialise afterwards (not that i'm typically inclined this way under "normal" circumstances anyway). i don't think it's something i'm going to end up "buying into"... don't think it ever was. should i continue going anyway?

tried to have an early night after getting home. i thought i'd hit the sack ASAP and have a shower in the morning instead. i thought 10:30pm was a decent effort, but doing the maths for a 7am wake up, i realised that would still only be about 8 hours of sleep in total... which is only going to tease the interest and make zero dent on the capital of my sleep debt... and which probably explains why i'm still yawning my head off!

*sigh*

Thursday, April 15, 2004

japanese truman

found this via urldj - story of one nasubi-san which brings to mind the darker overtones of the truman show, and then some! sad things is... i'd probably watch it...

- - - - -

one more day of filling in at work. running remote desktop over the LAN saves me running back and forth between desks. too cool :)

- - - - -

i have ~10 hours worth of talks and music on MD (from camp) to convert to audio CDs... time to fire up the spare PC and do get some multitasking happening! oh for a few more hours in the day...

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

shed a tear

See from His head, His hands, His feet,
Sorrow and love flow mingled down!
Did e'er such love and sorrow meet,
Or thorns compose so rich a crown?


it was here... the last afternoon of CCCB's family camp... we were singing the third verse of "when i survey" on easter sunday afternoon, and i suddenly felt that i should feel *something*... these words which i had sung so many times before - i should not be numb to that which they speak. and then, i cried. ever so briefly. as a tear or two ran down my face, and my voice faltered on the last few lines, i felt grateful, and knew i am loved.

thank you jesus, for the blood that you shed.

- - - - -

so the camp itself was fairly good. from after work on thursday till sunday evening i was busy with camp related stuff for CCCB church camp which was held at the Alexandra Park Conference Centre at alexandra headlands. felt busy and tired (not enough sleep) throughout the camp, which was a slight detraction from the overall experience... nevertheless it was a nice enough time away, with some good laughs, good conversations, and hard work digging into the book of esther.

managed a bit of a sleep-in monday morning, but was busy the rest of the day. upon finishing brunch, i realised i was about to be late for a chauffeuring assignment! got changed and rushed out of home, and off to drive a good friend to her wedding. was also asked to take (digital) photos, and borrowed my brother's unit (a canon G2) for the ceremony cos my camera was never going to have enough battery or memory to make it through the whole day. in the end i was a bit disappointed with some of the shots taken with his camera - i wasn't really familiar enough with its functions and so took everything on auto while trying to minimise the use of flash... oh well, good thing i wasn't the principal photographer :p

after the ceremony came afternoon tea at orleigh park, and more photos and milling around. got home just before 7, and promptly remembered i have a meeting to attend at 7! it was at my place, so i ate while the meeting got underway... ended up having people hanging out in my room afterwards (yes, the room that doesn't have much room!) and so again failed to have an early night...

woke up early this morning to take a shower, and got to work a few minutes earlier than usual. started my four days of standing in for a colleage on holidays... so far no disasters... ! looking forward to going home and resting up - a holiday to recover from one's holiday, so they say.