May 26, 2007

Leaving On A Jetplane

Will be flying in 9 hours. Gosh, I'm anxious, all-excited ... don't know if I can sleep tonight :p

Anyhoos, will be away for 2 weeks. I will only be able to have Internet access during the weekends., so will update if possible. Rest assured there'll be pictures!

Have a great weekend, y'all.

May 25, 2007

Linky love for 25 May 2007

Here are some blogs to note for this week:

  • 27 Lessons About Blogging - Daily Blog Tips (I always like to start the day with some tips on blogging :p)
  • Gate Gap Phenomenon - An Englishman in Osaka (just to show you that if you're worried about securing the gates of your home, you should take a look at this)
  • Every sperm is Sacred! Masturbation is for heathens! - The Boinq (I recently stumbled upon this blog from Ed's, and I was hooked. This girl writes really well, and I actually went through 5 pages of her archives)
  • BornRich (Because seriously, you'd want EVERYTHING here)
  • Chicken soup for the blogger's soul - 5xmom (Okay, I know, I shouldn't be pimping the same blogger twice, and I'm not trying to kiss 5xmom's ass, but this was one very good post which I thought she wrote, which inspired me to write the one about my grandfather)

You Don't Love Me Anymore

When I first heard this song, I was like, OMG ... this is the best love song EVER. It's the way that he sings it, so forlorn, so serious, but the lyrics are just hilarious.

Pop satirist Alfred Matthew "Weird Al" Yankovic does a lot of parodies of songs, which you can check out on Youtube. For today, I shall leave you with his ever-popular, You Don't Love Me Anymore.

Note: Men, I suggest you ... erm ... watch the ladies, eh? You know what they say, hell hath no fury like a woman scorned ;)

Weird Al Yankovic

You Don't Love Me Anymore

We've been together for so very long
But now things are changing, oh I wonder what's wrong?
Seems you don't want me around
The passion is gone and the flame's died down

I guess I lost a little bit of self-esteem
That time that you made it with the whole hockey team
You used to think I was nice
Now you tell all your friends that I'm the Antichrist

Oh, why did you disconnect the breaks in my car?
That kind of thing is hard to ignore
Got a funny feeling you don't love me anymore

I knew that we were having problems when
You put those piranhas in my bathtub again
You're still the light of my life
Oh darling, I'm beggin', won't you put down that knife?

You know, I even think it's kinda cute the way
You poison my coffee just a little each day
I still remember the way that you laughed
When you pushed me down that elevator shaft

Oh, if you don't mind me asking, what's this poisonous cobra
Doing in my underwear drawer?
Sometime I get to thinking you don't love me any more

You slammed my face down on the barbecue grill
Now my scars are all healing, but my heart never will
You set my house on fire
You pulled out my chest hairs with an old pair of pliers

Oh, you think that I'm ugly and you say that I'm cheap
You shaved off my eyebrows while I was asleep
You drilled a hole in my head
Then you dumped me in a drainage ditch and left me for dead

Oh, you know this really isn't like you at all
You never acted this way before
Honey, something tells me you don't love me any more, oh no no
Got a funny feeling you don't love me anymore

Click here to watch the video.

May 24, 2007

To My Dear Ah Kung

I call him Ah Kung.

Ah Kung's my mum's father. My Popo (mum's mum) passed away when I was 6 years old, so I didn't really get to know her that well (I remembered that she made a mean braised chicken and mushroom dish though).

My childhood memories with my Ah Kung still lingers vividly in my mind. He was the first person who taught me to drink coffee. I was about 5 years old at the time, and every weekend, my parents would drop me at my grandparents' place, so that they can bring me for ballet lessons the next morning (yeah I know, this lumbering ox was actually a tutu-wearing twinkle-toes for 2 years). I would take the bus with him to the ballet centre every Saturday morning. Before that, we'd have breakfast near the house, where I would order my usual box of UHT chocolate milk, and him a hot cup of kopi. I would always finish my chocolate milk before my food arrives, and he'd pour the kopi onto the saucer, where I'd scoop into my mouth with a teaspoon. This was our routine every Saturday morning for 2 years, before I stopped taking ballet lessons altogether.

Spring in Takasaki

Every weekend, for the past 12 years or so, my family and I would take Ah Kung out for dinner, where he'd stay over for a night before leaving for his home again on Sunday evening. He preferred to stay in his own place, even though we've asked time and again, for him to move in with us. More freedom, he'd say. He'd tell us stories about my mother, of his work (he was a chemist), his beloved tai chi, etc, and we'd have such a good time every weekend with him around.

He stayed in the US for a few months in a year, for a few years, just to visit my aunt and her family. Everyone loved having their Ah Kung around, for he was such a jolly man. And everytime he came home, he'd bring me a t-shirt from his travels to the US. I still have the ratty old San Francisco t-shirt (it's worn to bits) which he got me 10 years ago.


He never forgot our birthdays, and every birthday and Christmas, we'd receive a little present from him. His gifts weren't expensive, as he could only afford so much when he had long retired. My mum would give him a bottle of his favourite cologne which, which we later realised, he never used because he just didn't have the heart to use it ("mm seh tak yong", so to speak).

I remembered talking to him about my apprehension of leaving for the UK to study, when it was going to be the first time I was leaving home, to be on my own. He listened, and told me all he wanted to do was see me graduate, and that was all that mattered.

It was when I was in the UK, that his health started to deteriorate. My parents finally made him stay with us, but even then, he did everything by himself, as he did not want to trouble anyone. It all started with a fall which cracked his hip and leg bone. It was after that that everything went downhill. Mum would tell me over the phone that he was having difficulty remembering things, which became worse when he started having difficulty recognising people.


It was a very tough decision to put him in a nursing home, because my house (with its split levels and all) just wasn't a conducive environment for an old man with mobility problems to live in. Plus, he needed constant medical attention. Ah Kung never complained, but took it in his stride. His Alzheimer's got worse, and it could be that he did not even know he was no longer living in his own home.

When I finally returned to Malaysia for good, I went to the home to visit him. It broke my heart when he could no longer recognise me. My mum would try to remind him of who I was, he would look at me, with slight recognition, and he'd say "Ohhh Tine, you're back". It was heart-breaking to reduce to talking to him in child talk, because it was all he could recognise and understand.

For the next year, his health deteriorated further. His arthritis became so bad; he could no longer move. He had to be turned every hour to avoid bed sores from developing. He could no longer talk.

In the final weeks of his life, taking a breath became a feat for him. As sad as we were when he finally passed away, we were also relieved that he would no longer be suffering as he had for the past year. I remembered those heart-wrenching moments when he was in the ICU, watching him struggle to breathe due to the massive built-up of phlegm in his lungs (he had to have it manually removed every hour).

Tokyo Disneysea

When my aunt came back to see him in his last days, she and my mum talked to him, telling him that they are fine, and that he does not need to worry about his children any longer. I remembered very well, that my grandfather opened his eyes, with the oxygen mask over his mouth and nose, looked at them for a very long time, and tears ran down his cheeks. He could not talk, but his eyes told them everything they needed to know. I cried like a baby that night.

My Ah Kung passed away in April 2004. The funeral was a quick affair, which lasted all but 2 days. In his little "pigeonhole" next to my Popo, he had his favourite cologne with him.

I remembered when I was in Japan, there was an episode of ER (which was showing on TV), featuring a patient who resembled my Ah Kung, in all his sickness too. I remembered tears were rolling down my face, and I couldn't sleep that night, because I missed him so.

It was difficult writing this without a lump in my throat, and tears in my eyes. It's not his death anniversary or something, but I just wanted to dedicate this to my beloved grandfather.


Ah Kung,

It's me, Ah Tine. How are you doing up there, with Popo? I hope you're having a swell time, and am so glad that you are no longer suffering.

I'm getting married soon, did Mum tell you? How I wish you were here to see me walk down the aisle. You missed my graduation, and I'm so sad that you're going to miss my wedding too. I remembered you telling me you wanted to see me graduate, to see me married, and to hold your first great-grandchild. I'm so sorry you won't be able to be there, but I want you to know that you are, and will always be a big part of my life. Don't you worry about me, Ah Kung. You have never met your future grandson-in-law, but I'm sure you'll love him.

Mum misses you tremendously, and so do I. She finally unpacked your clothes from your bag after 2 years (she daren't do so in the beginning, as it was too painful for her), and we both looked back with fondness and sadness, because it reminded us that you're no longer with us. Yet, we know that you're in a much better place now, with Popo.

Thanks for being the loving grandfather you were. You'll always be my one and only Ah Kung.


May 23, 2007

Blog Problems

I'm not sure if any of you guys have been having problems accessing my site lately. I've been having a bit of issues concerning my blog, namely copyright issues. Yep, I made the mistake of using copyrighted material in one particular post (it was a birthday greetings poem, which I have promptly removed). My domain was unfortunately suspended.


I've already contacted on this, and the issue is now resolved. Let's just say that there was a lot of lawyer-jargon-talk going on. support was very prompt, which was good.

Anyways, let it be a lesson to all of us as well. Be careful when using material which isn't originally yours (text, images, media files, etc) in your site, lest you want the Internet watchdogs coming down on you. I certainly learnt mine.

May 21, 2007

Weekend Of Packing, TBS And Borders

Oooh five more days before I leave for Melbourne. Gosh, I'm excited! I started packing a little yesterday. Man, I have a lot of stuff to bring. Shipping my life there sikit demi sikit; it's quite an exhilarating feeling. Bringing some of my winter woolies to keep there, which takes up quite a lot of space in my luggage. Anyhoos, I'm doing this little by little, so that I won't be too rushed when I do my final packing on Friday.

So ... how was your weekend? Tagged along my mum to Gurney Plaza on Saturday, 'cos there's the annual The Body Shop (TBS) sale which mum's a fan of. Bee texted me on Friday night to let me know of their annual sale (thanks girl!) and once I told mum, well, it's an all hell break loose kinda thing.

There was a crazy amount of people at the Body Shop, with discounts from 10% to 70%, and an additional 10% discount for TBS members. I'm okay with their stuff; I guess after being in the UK for three years and knowing that I'll definitely be paying more than UK prices for TBS stuff, kinda turns me off buying TBS products in Malaysia. It's sad that TBS Malaysia only holds their sales annually; sales are often in TBS UK. Anyone remembered their 1 pound sales? Now THAT, is seriously worth my waking up at dawn, and queuing up at the entrance for the shops to open, so that I can get the best deals. My coveted makeup brush set only cost 1 pound per brush. No kidding! The good brushes too, not the dodgy kind. Anyhoos, suffice to say, my damage for the day was about 5% of mum's :p

Sunday was spent at Queensbay at Borders. I love that bookstore; love the fact that there are nice comfy seats for you to rest your tired feet on with a book, love it that the sales assistants do not look at you one kind when you're flipping through the pages of a book and NOT buy it, love it that it's nice and spacious (something that Popular Bookstore should learn to do). With a cup of Starbuck's caramel macchiato, I spent over an hour enjoying a book I bought.

Borders Spoils
My spoils of the day.

I just love buying tax-deductible items, don't you? ;)

May 18, 2007

Linky love for 18 May 2007

I have over 50 bookmarked blogs which I read everyday (can somebody say "ADDICT!"?). Most of the blogs I read have very good content, and I thought, hey, it'd be good to share some of these links with everyone. Who knows, you might get hooked like I did. Never a bad thing to learn something new, I say. Also, it's good to *ahem* share some good linky love, eh? ;)

What I'd do is share 5 good posts of the week every Friday, just before the weekend begins. How's that?

For starters, here's my first 5.
  • How Not to become a Grumpy Old Blogger - Daniel Rowse (good one, especially for those who do not think they're good enough to be recognised by the blogosphere)
  • Support Spyware Terminator - 5xmom (yeah okay, I know this is a sponsored post (I think), which isn't really my kinda thing, but I'm glad she brought the FREE (oooh I love this word) software to my attention, because ol' paranoid me can't get enough of spyware killers in my notebook :p)
  • Online FLV to AVI/MOV/MP4/3GP/MP3 Converter - Blog is Everything (I can finally save my favourite Youtube movies. Woot!)
  • - Anthonette (she makes good FREE (ahh, there's the word again) wallpaper, which is real purty. Support!)
  • Do Not Apologize for the Lack of Posts - Daily Blog Tips (something I think we're all guilty of, to a certain degree. This is, of course, to individual blogger's discretion)

PS: By the way, I do not expect to be linked back, or link exchanged, or whatever you call it these days. Just a lil' somethin' somethin' to share, that's all.

May 17, 2007

The Office Air Is Toxic

Dear Boss,

Re: The Office Air Is Toxic

I would like to highlight the above subject to your attention.

A couple of weeks ago, for some reason, the air in the office must have changed because I started to sneeze at an alarming rate (my dear colleagues commented on my bulbous nose). Yet, when I leave the office, my sneezes ceased, even though my room is air-conditioned.

The air has finally brought enough germs to knock me out for a couple of days, and when I was finally back at the office, my nose is thoroughly blocked, and I am now making "dumplings" ("pao wan tan", so to speak) on my desk, much to the chagrin and disgust of my dear colleagues. Yet, when I leave the office to pop to the loo, my nose becomes clear, and I am able to breathe again. When I returned to the office, all starts again.

I now have sufficient evidence (please see my red, bulbous nose, and "dumplings" on my desk, which I have kept for your perusal) to suggest that the air in the office is indeed toxic to me. To avoid an impending lawsuit from me to you due to the toxic air and from environmental activists to me for killing the trees to wrap the 'dumplings' with tissue, I suggest we settle this like man and woman. Before you perceive any funny ideas, I meant that there is nothing a good two-week break would not help to, shall I say, clear the air.

Thank you for giving my suggestion due consideration.

Your ever-faithful employee,

PS: Whaddya think? I should so send it in, dontcha think? :p

Back Up Your Blog

A blogging tip to share with you folks today - back up your blog.

If you've been blogging for quite some time now, imagine your horror and huge disappointment if, one day, some bugger were to hack into your account and delete your precious writing. You know how common that is nowadays. I don't know about you, but I'd definitely wanna kill someone if two years of my writing were to disappear in a flash, WITHOUT any means of retrieving my past work. You know when to back up your stuff in your PC. Don't forget about your blog too.

There are couple of ways to back up your work. The simplest method would be to save your archives, month by month, by saving the webpages into either HTML webpages, or, select everything, copy and paste into your word processor.

Or, if you're a lazy bugger like me, you might want to try something a little more automated. I've been using HTTrack Website Copier ever since I went past my 1-year mark of blogging. Just add your blog(s) as a project, enter the URL, and after a few clicks, let the software run on its own. It will save everything for you. Easy-peasy eh?

Blog Backup

HTTrack Website Copier is not so much of a blog backup tool, than it is an offline browser utility. You can download the contents of entire websites from the Internet to a local directory for offline viewing. Simply open a page of the mirrored website in your browser and browse the site link by link as if you were viewing it online.

Blog Backup 2

Do give it a go. It's free, which is great, as I'm a sucker for freebies (I can't say the same for the actual blog backup softwares available; I have yet to find one which is free). I'm paranoid, so I back up my blog once every two days. Once a week should do very nicely. Of course, remember to back up the ... err ... back up too :)

Click here to download.

May 16, 2007

Damn Those Germs

Yep, I'm down with the sniffles again. And to think that I used to brag about being as healthy as a horse, and not being able to fall sick. Which is true, actually, I only had major flus and such once a year, up to this year. This year's not too good for me, health-wise. My immune system's not as perked up as it used to be.


I daresay the air-con in my office is toxic. For the past month anyway. I've been sneezing non-stop, going through boxes and boxes of tissues (killing a lot of trees along the way), and my big nose has become even bigger from all the sneezing :(

Anyways, I'm now heavily doped up with meds (it's fantastic what paracetamol, codeine and antihistamine meds can do to your system). Hopefully I'll be fine by this week, as I'll be leaving for Melbourne next weekend. I'm going to have to stay away from the PC for a bit, so apologies for the sporadic posts, ya? Gotta get myself healthy again and fast.

*sniff sniff*

May 14, 2007

Dear Diary

Once upon a time, there lived a little girl who, in the absence of a sibling, had no one to talk to but herself. When talking to herself no longer brought her joy, but embarrassment of shame from her peers and her family, she decided to pour her feelings, her thoughts, her joys, and her tears onto the cheap little notebook, which she lovingly called her diary. She would begin her thoughts with two words "Dear Diary". It was like writing to a dear friend. She kept her diary under lock and key, and no one was to ever discover the secrets she wrote in her beloved book.

As the years go by, life got busy, and she stopped documenting her daily life and secrets. Her diary, long-forgotten was hidden under her cheap costume jewelery, the little treasures she bought with her pocket money. It cried out to be filled with words once more, the precious secrets which it could only share with her, and no one else.

As the world evolved, technology took over, and soon, she learned of the term "blogging". She started writing once again, this time, using a keyboard instead of a pen. Yet, she hesitated. It had been too long, could she still remember how to write? But no sooner has she begun, the words poured out once more. She wrote of the apprehension of beginning a whole new chapter of her life. She wrote of her joy and excitement when she met someone. She wrote of a future she envisioned with him.

Yet, this journal was her only companion when he broke her heart. There was no one she could talk to, without judgment, but this piece of technology they call a blog. She kept it private from the people she knew. No one knew of the actual depth of her pain but her blog.

When she thought she has finally moved on, she started writing another blog. One which she could share with her close friends. But no one will ever know of the secrets she wrote in her first one, the one which she guarded closely to her heart. Just like the little notebook hidden under her childhood treasures.

With the letting go of the past, the future was uncertain to her. She wrote of her fears and her uncertainties of life. She wrote of her disappointments when she thought she has lost a dear friend (and her elation when she realised it was not true). She wrote of opening her heart to new possibilities. And with that, new possibilities came, which were so much sweeter than she has ever dreamt of.

Would there be a happily ever after in her story? Only God knows. In the meantime, her dear diary would ever more remain a faithful companion, as it did her when she was a little girl.

The end.

May 13, 2007

Quote Me Not (7)

"Some of us thinking holding on makes us strong; but sometimes it is letting go" - Herman Hesse

On This Mothering Sunday

To my mum (you don't know of this blog, but maybe someday you will), without you, there won't be me. Thanks for everything you've done for me. Thanks for your love, your care, your worries, your wrinkles (mostly caused by yours truly), your smiles, your tears, your joys and your fears.

Happy Mother's Day

Thank you, Mum,
for being someone
I've always been able to turn to
for acceptance, reassurance, and love -
someone who taught me values
that will last a lifetime,
someone who keeps
growing dearer to me all the time ...

Thank you, Mum,
for filling my life
with so much love.
No matter where I am,
you will always be a part of me -
in thought, in heart, in love.

To all the mothers out there, have a wonderful Mother's Day.

May 12, 2007

Pudding Hair & School Shoes

Ahh the weekend begins. Well, technically it began yesterday, and since today's almost over, I have about a little more than a day left of the weekend. Aww man.

Got coerced by Mum to go accompany her to the hair salon in the morning. Thought I'd give my hair colour a bit of a do-over too. I had what the Japanese ladies would call "pudding hair". Y'know, dark on top, light at the bottom, resembling pudding? Yeah, I had that when I was in Japan and they just couldn't stop calling me a pudding. They'd better just be referring to my hair, and not my body size. Anyhoos, it's a nice dark red-brown now. All I need now is just a bit of time to get rid of the chemical smell on my hair :(

Nothing much during the day, except TV and oh yeah, washing my sneakers. Man, I think the last time I actually washed a pair of shoes was in uni, when I was still wearing sneakers! Golly. When was the last time you washed your sneakers? :p Speaking of sneakers, I was at Fila last week, and they actually sold white sneakers as school shoes for kids. Fila as school shoes!! Aiyo, when I was in school, all I had were Pallas Jazz! (cheapest of the range, easiest to wash ... BEST!) Kids these days, so very the lucky. Velcro-ed shoes some more! Tsk tsk tsk.

Annyywaays, that's my Saturday almost gone. How did you spend yours?

May 11, 2007

The Alchemist

This is a powerful duet by Lara Fabian and Russell Watson (this is featured in his Amore Musica album), and I simply love the lyrics. I find myself lost in the haunting music.

Bloody rose

The Alchemist

In the desert where almost nothing grows
you'll find the most beautiful rose
takes its name from Jericho
a miracle of life
I know a place I can't deny
where even a Jericho rose would die
The desert of your heart's where I am trying to survive

Can't control this
can't let go this
feeling is all I have
I know that...

I could build a tower out of steel and stone
but trying to build a bridge to you
is something I can't seem to do
If I could turn this dust to gold
you'd see it clearly
Trying to earn your love
is just like trying to learn the art of alchemy

The measure of a woman's heart
is just how deep and just how far
a secret can be kept
till it is only distant memory
My emotions fall on stony ground
I wear them just like hand-me-downs
because I know the secret is the love
that you have for me

I can't believe
can hardly breathe
without you by my side
I know that...

I could build a tower out of steel and stone
but trying to build a bridge to you
is something I can't seem to do
If I could turn this dust to gold
you'd see it clearly
Trying to earn your love
is just like trying to learn the art of alchemy

How could life be the same
if I find I loved in vain
The dream I have every night
is to wake with you by my side

I could build a tower out of steel and stone
but trying to build a bridge to you
is something I can't seem to do
If I could turn this dust to gold
you'd see it clearly
Trying to earn your love
is just like trying to learn the art of alchemy

Click here to listen.

May 09, 2007

Happy 2nd Birthday, Blog

I was just checking my blog archives, and realised, that four days ago, was my blog's birthday! Yep, it marked the 2nd year of my filling this web journal with blurbs of my life. And my, how it has grown.

Happy birthday, blog
It's supposed to be TWO candles lah

How quickly time goes by. This place sure has undergone many changes, from the day I wrote my first post, till now. I remembered writing about my excitement (which turned into incredible homesickness) of being in Japan. I remembered crying over my keyboard when I wrote about my failed relationship (although I didn't fill it with the details, but bit by bit, I poured out my heartbreak).

I remembered writing about the vacations I took, to get over that tough period, and how broke I became after splurging on myself. I remembered going public for the very first time, with the worry that people aren't going to like reading my blog. Worry that my previous anonymity would finally be stripped away, and strangers would finally "see" me. I remembered feeling happy and excited when I made my first blogger-pal, and with that, having a steady stream of loyal readers and friends. I remembered the sense of appreciation and gladness that my hard work here did not go to waste.

I remembered being on my condescending high horse about how a blog should and should not look like, etc. I remembered being thoroughly humbled when my blog (and my personality) was viciously taken apart by utter strangers when I sent it in for a review. I remembered feeling betrayed by the people of whom I was such a loyal fan of. I remembered telling myself that I would never judge another blog again, and that every blog is unique. And they are.

I remembered falling in love with the man whom I'm going to spend the rest of my life with. I remembered writing about it here, with such anticipation and quick beating of my heart when I told the world that I love him. And they rejoiced with me when I told them we were getting married.

I remembered finally buying my own domain for the blog, getting my own dot com. I remembered my excitement when that dot com went public without any problems. I remembered all the help I received when I asked for it, in building my own place. Help given by people who do not know me, yet helped unconditionally.

This blog has seen me through the best and worst times of my life. It has become a big part of my life, not because it's only a journal, but with the journal, came the friends whom I made.

So happy (belated) birthday, oh blog. You were a project which turned into something more profound. I'm glad I did not give you up, even though there were times when I wanted to. May you be filled with many more words to come.

To my readers, thank you for sticking with me. I would not have lasted this long if not for you.

May 08, 2007

My Blog Review at Blogsreview.Net


I got reviewed by Pablo at Blogreviews.Net! My, my, I'm still red in the face from reading the review, such lovely words from senor Pabla (so glad you liked it). What made it sweet for me was that I certainly was NOT expecting it, nor did I put him up to it.

You can check it out here if you like. Do give him a shoutout if you'd like to have your blog reviewed by him. Thanks again, Pablo!

May 07, 2007


Gosh, I need exercise (I know, my complaints about this never end. Sigh). It doesn't seem as though I've put on weight (that's it, the stupid bathroom scale must be rosak), but the fat on my hips and *gasp and shudder* flab (it's in abundance, people!) are getting a lot worse.


I can't seem to get off my ass to the gym even though it's so near my house. I should be on a diet and keeping fit and all that with the upcoming wedding, dontcha think? Oh no, I seemed to be shoving more food into my never-closing mouth :(

This is not good, people. So not good. I HAVE to stop eating.

I need a self-shovel, if there's such a thing, to exercise. Okay okay, I shall go jogging this evening, after work *fingers crossed at the back*. I HAVE to stop putting it off. Have to, have to *mumbling to self*


I have 10 lbs to lose before the wedding. Have to bertekad. Where can I go to hypnotise myself to hate junk food and love rabbit food? Gah.

May 06, 2007

An Odd Combo of Island Plaza, Fila and Grey's Anatomy

I was at Island Plaza today with Mum, and man, that place is sadly empty. It used to be pretty "in" before Gurney Plaza was born. Other shopping malls in Penang were either too dodgy, too unknown to stock reputable brands, or both. Island Plaza came along, and suddenly, everyone decided to go there because it was the most "upclass" at that time. Business really suffered when their anchor tenant, Super Tanjung, left due to heavy unpaid debts (and worse when Gurney Plaza came about). Still, it's quite a nice place to hang out at because the crowd's a lot smaller, and you still have the nice coffee areas (i.e. places where they sell cutthroat coffee at RM10 a pop) you can relax at, catch up with a few friends, and *ahem* "steal" some good WIFI action. Tee hee hee :p

Fila was having a sale, and I ended up buying a couple of t-shirts for myself, and another for Tim. They stock good-quality cotton tees, which aren't too expensive. The ones I bought today are around RM23 a shirt. Not bad, eh?

Other than that, it's been a relatively relaxing weekend, of reading and watching my lovely McDreamy (of Grey's Anatomy). If you haven't watched the series yet, do check it out. It's ER meets House meets Sex and the City. Go figure, eh? It's gotta be something good if McDreamy (played by Patrick Dempsey) has become a household name. Hehehe.

Grey's Anatomy

Oh, and McSteamy comes in on Season 2. McDreamy vs. McSteamy. Man, you gotta love the way they named their men, huh? ;)

May 05, 2007

A New Beauty Blog

A bit of news to share - I've started a beauty blog of my own, Beautyholics Anonymous. I reckoned it's high time I have one too, and to leave the beauty stuff all at one place (this blog's starting to be a bit scattered; at least my male readers wouldn't have to read about the ladies stuff here, hehe :p). It's very new, so do be patient and give it some time while I fill that place with reviews and stuff.

Oh boy, another blog huh? Juggling three at a time ain't gonna be easy, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed that it won't be another abandoned project.

Do check it out - Beautyholics Anonymous.

See y'all there, and have a great weekend!

May 04, 2007

Rape Is NOT About Sex

I read this on the news this morning.

Friday May 4, 2007

Gang-raped in terror carjack

JOHOR BARU: A woman who was waiting in the car while her husband went to a toilet was held up at knife-point and taken on a terror ride, gang-raped and robbed.

The 28-year-old woman who works in Singapore, was driven around Plentong for three hours after being abducted from the petrol station in Tampoi. Her three-year-old son was in the car with her.

The drama unfolded when the victim and her son had accompanied her husband to town on his way to work in Singapore at 4am several days ago.

The husband stopped the car, with his wife and son inside, at the petrol station and kept the engine running.

Soon after, the woman was shocked to see a man armed with a knife, knocking at her window demanding that she open the door.

The woman, fearing for her son's safety, complied and the suspect then drove the car to pick up his friend from a nearby area.

They blindfolded the woman and threatened to harm her son if she struggled.

The woman begged the men to let them go as she was pregnant but they instead took her to a secluded area and took turns to rape her.

They then picked up another man before dropping both mother and son in Permas Jaya and driving off with the car and her belongings.

Johor Baru (South) OCPD Asst Comm Shafie Ismail said that the car had been recovered two days after the incident in Majidee. He appealed to those with information to contact the police hotline at 07-221 2999 or the nearest police station.
Rage soared through me as I read every line of the news.

A certain minister once commented that a woman who dresses indecently is inviting rape to herself. Sir, read this, thoroughly read this and tell me if she was inviting such terror upon herself. Was the piece of meat uncovered, that the cats would come and eat it? If you don't have breasts and a vagina, you have absolutely NO right to even open your mouth on the issue of rape. What about young boys who are sodomised? Did they invite violence upon themselves? Were they not 'uncovered'?

Rape CANNOT be justified.

I don't understand how people could associate rape with sex. It is NEVER about sex. You want sex? You can pay for it.

Rape is about violence. Fear is inflicted upon the victim and the stress and trauma will be her stigma for the rest of her life. She would suffer PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) which cost last a very long time. It's about having total control over a human being whose eyes are filled with fear and horror. It's about the exhilaration of being in such control. No one in their right mind would invite terror into their lives.

What angered me even more about the news was that the bastards had their way with her even though she was pregnant. Has humanity sunk so low, that a pregnant woman can't even be spared? What more, her young son had to witness to such terror.

Gang rape is the vilest of crimes. It's the muliple violation of one's being (physically and mentally). Death would be welcomed with open arms if spared of such violation.

I could wish for the criminals to be caught and sentenced to be raped themselves multiple times. I could wish castration upon them. But right now, all I can think of is to pray for the family. That they recover from the horror. That they be spared from any further humiliation from the outside world.

Sigh. Humanity has failed us once again.

May 03, 2007

A Niche, And A Post Filler

Have you ever had the feeling you've run out of things to talk about? Well, in my case, to blog about. Today's one of those days.

I've been reading a lot of blogs on blogging, and all of them point to one important point - find a niche, and stick to it. When I look at mine, I realised I don't have one. I mean, it's not specifically about beauty products review, it's not specifically about music, it's not specifically about travel ... you get the picture. I've come to the point where I was simply blasting out anything under the sun. To be honest, this makes me doubt the blog's credibility.

I reckon my niche is "everything under the sun". I don't think there's such a thing, but I guess I'd have to start several other blogs to accommodate different topics of discussion, e.g. a beauty blog (I was actually contemplating on starting one) or something, but I wouldn't want to start something I may not have the time to give it its deserved attention. Hangat-hangat tahi ayam-ness is a weakness of mine.

Golly, am I even making sense here? Guess it's just one of those days where I'm trying to find a purpose in everything I'm doing, starting with this blog. I reckon my brain's on autopilot after the long weekend.

There ya go. A post filler for today, where I just ranted three paragraphs of unsubstantial nonsense. Everything under the sun, people. This includes rubbish.

May 02, 2007

Getting Rid of Cracked Heels The Cheap & Easy Way

Fancy getting rid of the hard callous skin on your heels, but not willing to pay for a pedicure? Well, I'm going to show you how it's done, with cheapo but good products, which will guarantee good results (but you gotta be hardworking and stick to the regime, of course).

Now I had seriously UGLY heels. I'm talking about extremely cracked heels, till they're bleeding, that kinda thing. I reckon I took after my dad, who has very dry, cracked heels as well. You know lah, women with dry, cracked heels can't wear mules or sandals without the cracked heels exposed for all to see. I was always very embarrassed in trying on new shoes at the shoe shops if I'm not wearing long jeans, because I was afraid people might look at my ugly heels in disgust.

The problem with cracked heels is that it's not only an indication that your heels are very dry, but when you walk barefoot, whether it's at home, or even outside, the dirt tend to get trapped at the cracks, which makes it very difficult to remove. Trust me, it's bad enough that the cracked heels look ugly (with the dry whitish dead skin); it's even worse when it's cracked AND grey with difficult-to-remove dirt.

If you've been to a nail salon for pedicures, you'll know that the pedicurist always rub your skin raw till all the dry, dead skin is removed before they slather your legs and feet with cream and paint your toe nails. To be honest, I wasn't really all that keen on the colouring of toe nails when having a pedicure; it's the removing of the hard skin which I wanted. But then I realised, paying RM38 (Nail Hansen, Gurney Plaza) for a pedicure almost once a month just to remove the hard skin's a bit expensive, when I can do it myself at home. Of course, it is a totally different thing when you're there to splurge and indulge ;)

After long and hard observation at what the pedicurist did to my feet, I realised that, hey, I could do that too, and thought I'd try it out at home (without the painting of nails). Lo and behold, in less than 20 minutes, I had smooth heels!

Enough already, get me some smooth heels now!

Okay, okay, let's get started. First of all, you need a pumice. I do NOT recommend the pumice stones you see at drugstores; they are TOO hard, and more often than not, you end up over-scrubbing the heels till they're practically bleeding. Try the softer ones, like the one they sell at Watson's.


This is about RM8, if I'm not mistaken. It's not as hard as the pumice stone, and it works wonders.

Before you start scrubbing the dead skin away with the pumice, wet the feet and legs. By the way, this is best done when you're taking a bath or shower ('cos you already wet anyway). Lather your feet with shower gel, making it nice and slippery. Next, and this is the fun part, scrub away! I recommend lathering the feet with shower gel first so that it's easier for you to scrub at the stubborn hard skin, and also it's less damaging to the skin. Scrub a little harder if the dead skin's still a bit too stubborn to let go, but continue to keep lathering the feet with shower gel if they get rubbed off. Don't forget the areas such as the balls of the feet, and the side of the big toes.

Once you're satisfied that the hard skin's been removed, wash the shower gel and skin residue off your feet. Next, it's time to apply a scrub on your feet and legs. I use St Ives' Invigorating Apricot Scrub (agak RM17 per tube) for this.

St Ives Apricot Scrub

I know, I know, this is a scrub meant for the face, but honestly, I do NOT recommend this on the face, as I find it too harsh on the skin (there's a Gentle version for the face which I have not tried though; anyone who has used this, do share your experience on whether it's good or bad on your face). Use a dollop of the scrub (about the size of a 20sen coin) for each foot, and scrub away. Do not forget the legs, as they need the exfoliation too. Pay more attention to the heels, and the balls of the feet. Do not forget to scrub in between the toes either. Great way to remove trapped dirt. After you're done, wash.

After your shower and skincare regime, it's time to moisturise the feet. I'd recommend you use a proper foot cream for the heels, as they're richer, and would work better than regular body lotion. There are a lot of foot creams out there, cheap ones, expensive ones. Do use what you're comfortable with. There are medicated ones too, as offered by Scholl and Ellergy, which are good for very cracked heels (you know, the cracked-till-they-bleed kinda heels). I'm not keen on the smell though; it smells like medicated powder to me, which I'm not too fond of. Plus the smell stays on my hands and fingers after application, even after I've washed them. As for me, I use Ginvera's Green Tea 2-in-1 Cracked Heel and Elbow cream (less than RM30 per tube; can't really remember how much it costs though).

Ginvera Green Tea Foot Cream

This cream's not as rich as the other foot creams, but it works. Plus, it smells good, which is a huge plus in my book. Apply the cream generously on the soles of the feet, paying extra attention to the heels. Rub the cream in. Do it twice, as the cream's not very rich. Rub the excess cream on the balls of the feet, and your elbows if you want.

Now comes the hard part, which I almost always forget. You have to use the cream on your feet (after you clean it, of course) EVERY DAY. Use the scrub on your feet once a week, and the pumice stone once a month. After a week, you'll emerge with nice smooth legs, and better still, smooth heels. I'd recommend wearing bedroom slippers at home. It's better for your feet to have as little contact with the hard floor as possible.

There ya go. Hope this tutorial helps those with callous heels. It certainly helped me BIG time. Plus, you can get all of these at Watson's, so it's quite a good deal. These items will last you for months. Cheaper than going for pedicures, right?

Strap on your heels

Now strap on your favourite mules or sandals, and flaunt your pretty (and smooth) heels ;)

May 01, 2007

Long Weekend's Officially Over

Ahh ... after a nice 4-day weekend, it's time to go back to work tomorrow. Ugh. A lot of people are on holiday tomorrow, because of the dual-event of a holiday today (Labour Day and Wesak Day). I had mine replaced on Monday instead, so it's back to the office for me.

Still, it isn't too bad. I reckon I'm quite well rested. Didn't sleep all that much, but just resting at home. Did a bit of spring-cleaning of my room, went for a facial (a free one at Kanebo, courtesy of Mum's free-facial voucher), did some shopping (yeah the shopping mall is crazy packed today; it was such a feat searching for a parking space) ... yep, all in all, it was a good weekend indeed.

On the bright side of having to go back to work, it's a 3-day week! Hehe :p

Okay, post-holiday resolutions (yeah, it's my thing. If only I actually keep 'em):
  • Spend less from now on (oh God, I need the strength for this)
  • Eat less (I ate like a cow over the weekend)
  • EXERCISE!! (to get rid of the weight gained from eating like a cow)

So, how was your weekend?