Thursday, August 31, 2006

SSO at the Park

Now, whoever said you need to spend a bomb to have a good time? You can have a smashing time anywhere, as long as you are with good company.

Yep, so last Sunday, I daresay I had one of the best picnics in my life. The trio of us consisting of Sam, Huijun and me, made our way down to the Botanical Gardens to celebrate Sandy's birthday. There was a free concert by the Singapore Symphony Orchestra so all you needed was your own picnic basket, a mat and comfortable picnicking wear.

Our food loot is quite spectacular. Sandy brought a bottle of white wine, I brought salami, pate de foie with crackers and carrots with dip, Huijun brought an enormous ration of snacks sufficient to feed a family for a week.

Although it was a tad humid, I enjoyed the atmosphere very much. The lush greenery, the blue skies, good food, good company, nice music... Ahh. That's life, isn't it? It is just about lying down on the fields and soaking in nature's beauty. It reminded me so much of the summer Zen Concert in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park.

We sang birthday songs, drank wine, fed ourselves to the brim, chatted randomly and read the papers.

It was all gooooooooooood. Ooo, how I love picnics.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Operation Ollie

My MSN buddies should all know my nickname, lost duckie, by now. In our college years, all of us were accrued an affectionate animal name. I coveted the position of duckie, Sandy was christened ostrich (ostensibly due to her height).

Since this girl pal of mine is turning a year older soon, there is no doubt that I have to plan something special for her. Last year, I was in the United States. The year before, she probably had to stuff an unsuccessful cake attempt down her throat. So, Operation Ollie materialized this year.

Ollie started out from a mess of cotton wool, felt pieces, brown fuzzy strings, cotton balls and an aimless brain with no-whatsoever-clue-in-going-abouts.

Primarily, Ollie's face was created from a piece of beige felt cloth. I wanted white but somehow, there didn't seem to be any white-colored felt pieces on sale at Spotlight. No fish, prawns also can lar.

I had such a hard time creating Ollie's head. I almost died trying to turn her head inside out. Her beak got stuck somewhere in the process and I was so frustrated I almost tore the head apart. That explains the very traumatic, ruffled, unstuffed head as seen below.

Fortunately, with the help of cotton-wool surgery (sort of like what silicon will do to boobs I guess), Ollie got plumped up and looked a wee bit better.

Yes, yes, I know the beak looks weird. I MMS-ed my friend a picture of it for feedback and he replied that the beak looks fucked. Okay, whatever. How can the beak not be fucked after being stuck in its supposed oesophagus for a good half hour before I could finally unstuck it?

Anyway, I commenced on developing Ollie's fluffy body. Basically, I sewed on my Dad's hankercheif (Shh! He is not supposed to know about it.) over a fluffy brown cotton pom-pom. Then, the tedious task of sewing the fluffy black feathers began.

This is how Ollie looked with her ruffled feathered body.

It was nearing four at dawn when I finally cut the legs for Ollie. Don't mind the morbid picture below. I rate it NC16. View with parents supervision.

Next morning, I continued with the last stage of Operation Ollie - legs surgery. After stitching the sides of the orange felt cut-outs messily, I stuck a straw into it and poured rice.

After filling up with rice, and stitching those darn legs onto the fluffy black body, Ollie was finally completed.

The final touch - samples of cards were created with Photoshop. My stupid freaking printer induced much blood-puking. I need to buy a new printer soon. Sheesh.

Operation Ollie completed.

Over and out!
We had a early celebration of Sandy's birthday at the Botanical Gardens earlier this evening. More updates about that later. :)

Friday, August 25, 2006

Oh Mum

We used to live on the 16th storey of an apartment we love very much. My brother and I occasionally have dreams about our old apartment. Apparently, my mum does too.

As dreams are often subjected to weird fusion, my mum dreamt about Toto in our old apartment. In her dream, she has placed Toto in the balcony. Toto saw a fellow canine (a rather long way up at 16 storey, don't you think?) and began barking frantically. So frantically that he managed to wedged the metal railings apart (Remember, it is a dream).

My mum dramatically described how Toto looked at her in shock as he found himself falling, legs and paws flailing, down the whole 16 stories. She lamented tearfully how helpless she was, screaming for my Dad, running to the balcony, watching a helpless Toto trying to get up with his broken body.

Abruptly, she snapped awake, sobbing to my Dad in the wee hours of the night 'I shouldn't have put Toto in the balcony!!!'

And that is why, in the wee hours of the morning today, I was awakened by quite a commotion in my bedroom, with my mum absurdly fussing madly over Mister Toto (whom I think was similarly dazed by the attention.)

Oh mum.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Pondering Pronouns

As I sat on the TIBS bus homebound, I noticed buses have this uncanny ability to stop, like, inches away from the vehicle in front of them. This is probably because buses do not have front bonnets unlike typical cars. Then I wondered, if bus drivers are so prone to stopping their vehicles so closely to the front vehicles, it has got to be rather dangerous should they switch to driving cars on their days off. There are probably times when they shut off and go - oh shit! It's not a bus I'm driving.... and WHAM!

On a happier note, I am glad I settled Sandy's birthday present at the Tangs Sale.


My Sweetheart

He trotted in as I was buried in a pile of papers on my brother's bed. He is probably thinking 'Won't you play with me today?'

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Celebrity Sighting

Yesterday, I was inflicted with one of my impulsive shopping moods. As I tried on my clothes in the changing room, I heard some girls outside going 'Oh my God! Oh my God! Let's go and see!'

Before I entered the shop, the atrium of Plaza Singapore was simply brimming with crowds, instead leaving the shops strangely empty, much to my delight. Amazingly, all the shops hawking female apparel were quite free of customers. Armed with my purchase, curiosity got better of me and I headed out to strain my neck to catch what was the entire hullabaloo about.

At the stage of this OSIM event, stood a lean, tall, dark, suave and very handsome Louis Koo!

As the females got their pulses racing and heartbeats racing, their male counterparts in the crowd merely looked rather bored. Ha ha. I am not someone who would jostle with the crowd for the sighting of some celebrity, but darn, is he good-looking.

After a while, I got bored with the uncomprehension of his Cantonese-speak and left. I sauntered past two girls who just arrived at the stage.

Girl 1: Why are there so many people?
Girl 2: Must be some celebrity lah.

Girl 1 strained her head to peek at the stage.

Girl 1: Oh my god, I can't breath *Holds her chest*
Girl 2: Why?
Girl 1: It is Louis Koo can?!!!!!!!!!!!
Girl 2: OH MY GOD! I am going to faint...

I thought that exchange was rather hilarious.

Well, it was a day of celebrity sighting because I saw some Chinese Deejay while shopping alone at Bugis Village, and well, a number of Class 95 deejays at the screening of Movies at the Padang in the evening.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Obnoxious Old Man & Updates

I find it amazing how a person who constantly prides himself being one of the rare breeds that finished his education at the Raffles Institution during his epoch has not the minimum level of sensibility and emotional quotient to look at his own eccentric, obnoxious and difficult behavior.

He wanted my domestic helper, Lina, to cut his nails the next day. Lina has unfortunately scalded herself the day before, so my mother patiently tried to explicate the situation to him. Since his hearing is almost gone and he refused to wear the hearing aids that were purchased, explanation is always futile. He listens to only what he wants to hear.

Mum: Wait for 2-3 days, she will cut for you when she recovers.
OOM: I give her coffee money, you ask her cut for me tomorrow.
Mum: So what if you got money! She is injured! Let her recover.
OOM: I've got money! You ask her to cut for me tomorrow. Thank you.
Mum: When has Lina ever taken your money for cutting your nails!?
OOM: I've got money. If she doesn't want to, people outside will.
Mum: *exasperated* Fine, then you go outside.
OOM: Oh, so now you are chasing me out of the house?

Obnoxious old man thinks his money is everything. Treat others fairly and it will be reciprocal. Why do you think money is everything, even at the ripe old age of 90? Why can't you be accomodating? And yet, he laments about how his 6 children never visit. Is that a wonder for someone who value money more than love?

I feel a weird mix of pity and exasperation toward him.


Right, let me articulate some updates for the past weeks. Since I am quite a foodie, there will plentiful writes on cheap and good eats. Besides, food makes me happy. So, it is an apt way to cheer up a melancholic entry.

National's Day Eve was spent jostling with the crowd crawling from Citylink to Esplanade. Sandy's face was a frightening shade of irritation at the massive crowd. Fortunately, Lloyd reserved at table at Via Mar where we could settle in comfortable and watched the fireworks from Team Singapore. Via Mar is a restaurant that serves Spanish Fare. The food was not too bad.

Our comfortable dining area

Happy Belated Birthday, Singapore.

Oh, I also had a really belated birthday treat at Waruku Japanese Restaurant. I really enjoyed my dish of cold udon, adorned with delicious slices of salmon sashimi, roe, ika and whatsnot. Their Japanese fare slightly deviates from the conventional sushi joints, with much eye-popping variety.

We ordered a bottle of sake which tasted rather odd.

Oh, and some desserts.

Our sake was named the White Deer.

Last Saturday, I was really quite sick of all the crowds and decided to wander around Chinatown instead. It was quaint and quiet, forgotten on a weekend night. Seriously, I think Chinatown makes an interesting place to go on dates. Plus, it has many cheap eats to boot.

Even after usurping a bowl of laksa with my friend at Holland Vilage, I still managed to stuff down a few slices of the very delectable Drunken Chicken cold dish at this small eatery called Old Shanghai.

The service was amicable and fast. One of the matronly waitress was friendly sufficiently to explain how the Drunken Chicken dish was created using Hua Diao Jiu that was fermented for 5 years. Whatever that means, it sure tasted good!

After dinner, we adjourned to the dessert store next door. I was there previously with Sandy and Candice. Apparently, business has been so good they have expanded to occupy the store beside it. The carrot, yam and pumpkin cakes are wonderously crisp and melts in your mouth. However, I was there for the purpose of my Mango, Pomelo and Sago dessert.

We ordered a Mango Pudding and Black Sesame Paste as well. Ah, gluttony.

Here is the menu of what you can order.

In all, Chinatown is full of colors and eccentricity, really. Very pretty.

The Temple of Lights

Technicolor display of vegetable juices

Would you look at that? It says - Fresh Blend Bittergourd. Like who the f*ck drinks bittergourd?!

You've gotta be out of your mind.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Mildly Amused

Last night, I was with some friends at Winebar when I decided to pay a visit to the loo. At the cramped ladies' room, I saw one of the HYP student I supervised for the past year.

Me: Hey you.

She looked up from leaning on her friend's shoulders and threw me a bewildered look.

Student: I know you!
Me: Uh huh.
Student: I know you!!! But why???
Me: Er... because I am your final year project supervisor?

Her eyes suddenly widened in recognition.

Student: OH YES! OH SHIT!
Me: ...
Student: (To her friend) MY HYP SUPERVISOR IS HERE!
Student: (To me) I AM SO SORRY! I AM ABIT DRUNK.
Me: Oh, it's ok. How are you?
Student: How are you?!
Me: I'm good. What's your final year project grade?
Student: Oh *holds her head in her palms* I've got a B.
Me: Oh, that is not too bad.
Student: I'm sorry! I am abit drunk!
Me: Relax, but I need to use the loo.

I proceeded into one of the cubicle and was disgusted to find a puddle of puke at the side. Hmm, it was probably her. From inside the toilet, I could hear her outside the restroom, screeching in her bewildered voice to someone 'My HYP SUPERVISOR IS INSIDE THE TOILET!'

Right... I thought as I proceeded the common basins outside to wash my hands. She was seated near the basins with her friend, still going 'MY HYP SUPERVISOR IS INSIDE THE TOILET!' I am starting to wonder if I did traumatize her that much.

Student: (To random somebody) My HYP supervisor is inside the toilet!!!

I turned slowly from the basins and waved to her.

Me: Actually, I'm out already.
Student: (Sudden realization) OH SHIT! MY HYP SUPERVISOR IS HERE.
Me: ...
Me: (To her friend) Is she all right?
Friend: Yes, yes, she will be fine...
Me: Oh okay, please take care of her.

Avoiding any stares that followed, I hurriedly walked out of the washroom areas.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Toto's Meme

It is hard to say 'no' to an invitation from a fellow handsome canine, especially one which is showing love, gay or not. Henceforth, Mister Toto decides to make a special appearance today, with a meme containing all the serendipitous facts about him. Ta dah.

I am that dog who was born in Australia and bought by a rich brat who exported me to this sunny island of Singapore. I was named Toto and brought to live in a huge mansion. But, there wasn't anybody who gave me much love. 7 months I spent, being leashed in the garden, imprisoning my longing to run freely and play.

One day, the aunt of my seldom-present master brought me to a much smaller house. That was when I first met my new mistress, Y. Apparently, Y's mother, the formidable Mummy Alice who is constantly against Y's lifelong wish of having a dog, was away on a holiday. As such, she was not present to deny me as a gift. How lucky! *Chuckles* Imagine her exasperation when she returned from a holiday only to realize me, a semi-huge canine, lolling my tongue happily at her.

On the first night Mummy Alice returned, she refused to let me enter the house. I was lonely and frightened, sticking my head through the gates and whining continuously. I only stopped when I saw Y. As such, Y had no choice but to curl and sleep at the main door to comfort me. When Mummy Alice woke up to see the pathetic sight of her daughter sleeping on the cold hard marble floor next to the dog, her heart softened and she allowed me into the house. Whee. Our 苦肉计 worked!

Subsequently, I integrated well into the family, working my cuteness factor so that I am even permitted on sofas and beds. Mummy Alice loves me loads, bringing me for walks every night. Y's Daddy revealed his soft side with my appearance when he takes the trouble to clean me up and brush my teeth every morning unfailingly. 'You treat Toto better than you treat our Children!' Mummy Alice would chide.

Oh, yes. I am that very dog who is unfortunately the subject of too many lame jokes. Tell me to bestow you with 6 numbers for the Singapore's lottery game (aka Toto) and I will ignore you. Tell me you wanna buy a dog and name him '4D' and I will sneeze in your face. But well, at least 'Toto' is much better than times when Y decides to call me 'TOTO LAI AH GOU' for no rhyme or reason.

I am that dog who loves Sundays because that is when I will go to Kent Ridge Park for my afternoon run without interfering people demanding me to be leashed. I am that dog who barks when the door bell rings, even when I am outside the gate with Y who is ringing the bell. Boy, I hate that damn bell. I am that dog that leads any visitor to my snack cupboard and whines till I am fed. I am that dog who sleeps under Y's bed every night and acts as her snooze alarm after her actual alarm clock goes off. I am that dog who enjoys hide-and-seek and tug-of-bones games. I used to chase after balls madly but now I think I am too mature for this stuff. I scoff at Y and Lina (our domestic helper) when they try to cajole me to play ball nowadays. Who do they think they are kidding? All they do is make me run up and down like a monkey, then they laugh evilly themselves. Sheesh.

I am that dog who goes into an excitement frenzy when I hear the words 'Walk walk!' or 'Car car'. I get melancholic when Y tells me she has to 'Go to School'. That means I will be alone with Lina for the rest of the day. :( I am that dog that stands guard at Y's bed when she is asleep or sick. Anybody who visits her has to be surveyed by me. I will snap at anybody who hits her, even when it is only for fun. Grrr!

I howl when the Karang Guni man beeps his horn every morning. Sometimes, when I am lazy to run downstairs to bark at my fellow canine friends, I hop up Y's bed and bark from the windows instead. Passers-by throw me queer looks, but I don't really care. When I am naughty, Y will take the dreaded remote-controlled car from above the cupboard. That scary bugger emits the strangest sounds and moves around on its own! I swear that car has a mind of its own and has its eyes set on getting me. I scoot away immediately each time I see it. I tell ya, it is the scariest thing I have ever seen.

But frankly, I am no scaredy-cat. If my mistress needs comfort and unconditional love, I am that dog.

Monday, August 07, 2006

The Problem with Me

I can't lie to save my ass.

My friends should know me as someone who can't lie for nuts. I can't lie and I always speak my mind. I can't be bothered to do things I don't see a point with. That is going to get me into loads of trouble with life. Sigh.

This morning, I had a seminar which was discussing a certain seminar topic. I do not have deep comprehension of the topic and was sitting in just to get some inspiration for my research. At the end of the seminar, the professor started pointing at each of the audience and asking 'Do you have a question?'

Now, some people did have genuine questions to ask. They either really did not know much about the certain details, or they had something intelligent to inquire. Others, however, just asked questions because they felt that they were expected to, in order to show they were paying attention. I can see people really squeezing their brains and then asking really lame questions.

Unfortunately, I do not have deep understanding of the topic. I do not feel that I have anything intelligent to add. Further, I do not have any problem regarding the methodology because I felt I understood it. Hence, I see no point in asking any questions. When it was my turn...

Professor: So, do you have any questions?
Me: Hmm. No.
Professor: Wow you mean you understood everything?
Me: Uh no. On the contrary, it just means I do not have deep comprehension enough of the topic to have anything intelligent to add.
Professor: Har???

Hmm. I don't think my Professor was very impressed.

Friday, August 04, 2006


The wisest sage in the household

He is wise because he is the only one in the household who can make everyone rub his tummy by just lifting his feet, who can afford to sleep the whole day away while the rest slog away to feed him ... well, you get the drift.

Anyhoo, I think playing board games are a good way to dissolve a bout of depression. I met up with Sandy, Howie and TY for some games at Settlers Cafe yesterday evening. We played Cranium again, with Sandy and TY as Team Blue vs. the formidable Team Green combo of Howie and me. *Muhaha*

Team Blue...

vs. Team Green

Now, I must have mentioned it somewhere before. Cranium is a test of every ability, from acting, humming, drawing, sculpting, spelling, anagram-solving, palindrome solving, vocabulary, math, IQ, general trivia, you name it.

Here is Team Blue trying to solve an anagram. I love solving anagrams! Hee.

The funniest products must materialize from sculpting quests. Sandy's Statue of Liberty, I must say, is simply *ahem*, a work of pure art.

After Cranium, we tried this weird balancing game in which we each have to remove a piece without the tray toppling. Sort of like Jenga, but alot more challenging because the tray is extremely unstable.

'Twas a funny night.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Happy Birthday Mum

To my most favorite person in the whole, wide, humongous universe,


Although she nags, she pries, she speaks in incomprehensible languages (For e.g. "Girl ah, remember to eat the what har"), she wakes me up from sleep in the most despicable ways (For e.g. switching on the lights and asking Toto to lick me), she asks me the most exasperating questions, my mum is also the person who cooks the best dishes in the world, plays the best doctor when I am sick, pampers me the best way and believes in me the most.

Our family had a quiet steamboat dinner celebration at Coca Restaurant at Takashimaya last night. Maybe I will upload the pictures when I am feeling more handworking.

Meanwhile, my Canadian friend, Jaret, was sweet enough to send birthday greetings all the way from the other hemisphere. We just need a mirror to look at that though.

All righty. Picture updates. I am so hardworking! (In reality, I am just sick of writing my reports. Grrr.)

The Coca Menu..

The Coca Food..

My favorite picture of my Mum and Dad..

My mum and me..

My bro and dad tucking cooking for a change...

Wednesday, August 02, 2006


I finally commenced on my weekly running once more after 2 weeks plus of resting from a nasty bout of flu. I put on my spanking new Asics shoes, generously sponsored by my girl pals of Samantha and Sandy. Gracias, my ladies.

The shoes felt wonderously light, as compared to my ancient Adidas pair. I jogged along at a comfortable pace, with my iPod blasting in my ears until I saw someone stopping the traffic on the roads. Apparently, there was a procession of white-draped people and some of them were tossing joss paper. Behind them, a lorry adorned with neon-colored decorations inched along, somewhat resembling a funeral procession. Cluttered with the smoke from burning incense and offerings along the road, it was a rather eerie sight, especially when it was around 10pm at night.

I have never seen a funeral procession at night. Have you?

There was a chill down my spine as I ran against the procession at an even faster pace, unfortunately towards the next part of my route which was rather isolated and consisted of nothing but trees. Then I remembered Alan telling me during last Friday's wine session - "They live on trees, you know."

Trying to ignore that nagging hearsay, I continued, hoping no ghouls on prowl this Hungry Ghost Festival would interrupt my jog.

Thankfully, it was uneventful.

Anyway, I have received very nice belated birthday cards. One, all the way from Berkeley with a dubious-looking Adidas voucher which I do not intend to utilize. The other was a Hoops and Yoyo card. Oh, and Emily came by to have lunch with me and bestowed me with a DIY manicure/pedicure set. But in truth, I am quite a retard using these girly stuff. Haa.

Right, mum's birthday treat at Coca Restaurant tonight.