Monday, November 30, 2009

Dinner at Alexis Ampang and 'cleansing' the house (somewhat)

Another Dutch class down, two more to go...

Planning to take the exam next week, so I'm really crossing my fingers that the IND contacts us soon to make an appointment with the embassy. Until 2 or 3 weeks ago, I was in two minds, first about wanting to sit for the exam asap so that I could get it over with, and second that I wanted it to be as far away as possible so that I had more time to learn. I think right now I'm at a sufficient level to sit for the exam fairly comfortably. And so I just want it to be over.


On Saturday night, I went out for dinner with my Dutch teacher, Geraldine and her boyfriend, Wijnand. My 'partner' for the night was Musicmaker Nick. Or Maniacal Nick. I think I like Maniacal Nick better.

We went to Alexis Ampang, where the first thing I asked was: "Do you have the chocolate cinnamon cake tonight?". OMG if you haven't tried it, GO GO GO! After our delicious main meals, I wanted to order the cake for nagerechten (dessert). The others were still too full from their individual pizzas so I ordered my cake first. When it came, the scent was so divine, and it just made my heart melt with its loveliness. I offered a bite to everyone (genuinely!) but they declined. However, after enjoying half the slice, I decided that I really couldn't keep this piece of heaven to myself, while leaving everyone at the table so ignorant of it. Maniacal Nick agreed to a bite... and like everyone's first reaction to Krispy Kreme ("It's just a doughnut!"), his eyebrows raised to high heaven and he said, understatedly, "Ooh, it IS good!". And ended up taking several mouthfuls after. Wijnand and Geraldine caved in soon after, but I'm sure were being polite by not taking more than one forkful.

I miss it! I want it right now! Can't wait till Schrobbenmaster comes and we can go to Alexis just for cake. I was once disappointed and had to have the Chocolate Steam Pudding, which was nowhere in the same region as the Chocolate Cinnamon, so I think in the future I'll have to call Alexis before going to check if they do have it. Especially if I go there only for the cake.

Anyway, dinner was really good. Conversation was flowing and interesting. Wijnand said my Dutch 'g's were commendable, and Geraldine told him that I had a slight Russian accent when speaking Dutch (which is what Schrobbenmaster told me as well... very strange!).

Cynthia Utterbach from the International Jazz Series was performing that night but we weren't planning to stay for the show. We did end up listening to two songs before hightailing it out of the restaurant so we wouldn't be charged the RM25 for cover. I really think, though, that after having a main meal at Alexis, they should give us a discount for the show. Like pay RM10 instead of RM25. Because we've already spent hundreds of ringgit there, unlike someone who turns up, pays RM25 and orders a glass of ice lemon tea and sits for 2 hours.


This morning there was supposed to be a charity group coming over to my condo to collect donations left at an open area on the ground floor. I hadn't had time all weekend to set aside some things I wanted to give away (especially important as I'm leaving soon, and should really decide what to keep and what not to keep), but I hurriedly put together some food cans and shoes I never wear and brought them downstairs. It wasn't much, but I guess my house feels just a little more 'cleansed'. I hope they come back again, because there weren't many donations at the open area when I went. We were only given about 3 or 4 days notice, I believe. I think a week would have been better to alert people to gather things to give away.

Oh well, did my good bit for the day.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Rather painless visit to government departments

I hate doing anything official because I have the impression that it's really slow and no one will be able to answer any of my questions etc. I also hate going out of my house. Yes, even though there are many, many photos proving otherwise... I'm actually really comfortable at home in front of my Mac.

But what needs to be done needs to be done.

There is an official document I had to request to certify that I'm unmarried, which I need to send in to the Dutch embassy to get my residence permit. Thankfully, I have a friend who has done this before, so she just told me to head to the Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara (National Registration Department) to request the document, then move to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to get it legalised and stamped.

I really cannot be bothered to get up extra early to do things so I figure I'll take my chance and have faith. I had also called the customer service at the JPN yesterday and was told that Thursdays are the best days to get stuff done at the Marriage/Divorce department because they only have counselling and no ceremonies.

So I decided to just go ahead and do it today. I got up, had my tea, took a shower, had some lunch, played some Facebook games, then set off.

I took a new road which was very pleasant. It's the Maju Expressway which heads straight to Putrajaya (also turns off at National Sports Complex, Bukit Jalil and some other places). There were cars but it was a smooth drive. Toll is a more expensive RM2.50, compared to other roads going to Putrajaya. I'd rather pay that then face irritating KL drivers though.

I even decided to go to the JPN without a map. I figure that since Putrajaya is the administrative capital and was built to house all these government agencies in one area, it should be easy to find. Such faith I have. I just followed all the signs to Kompleks Jabatan Kerajaan (I think that's what it said... basically means government department complex) and I saw Kompleks C, D and E. Where the heck is A and B? Because JPN is not in C, D and E! Finally, I had to call Mumsy Bumsy to look for the exact address online. She told me to go to Precinct 2.

Once there, I saw a bunch of humongous buildings as well. This time it was right. All the jabatans were here. The kompleks were only housing the ministries. I'm pretty sure they signboard didn't say Kompleks Kementerian Kerajaan though. Which they should have, to make it clearer (Kementerian = ministry).

Anyway, I found the JPN and parked at the big area outside which only costs RM4 per entry. Good thing too, because who knows how long one has to wait at these government departments?

Photo of JPN by qunut13 on flickr. If you're qunut13, I hope you don't mind me using your photo. I tried to sign in to send you a message, but stupid flickr kept sending me to the main Yahoo! page. Lovely photo, by the way.

At first, with such a huge building, I expected to be lost and have to walk ages before reaching somewhere. But it was actually pretty alright. Within a few steps of walking in from a side entrance, I reached the info desk where the friendly lady pointed me in the direction of the Marriage department.

By the way, I wanna add that I was driving around Putrajaya and was really impressed (yet again) at all the buildings and the roads. Very nice indeed. Much better than having to brave KL traffic going to two government buildings.

I took a number and waited half an hour for my turn. I got some forms and was told to go to the Commissioner of Oaths so that he could witness my proclamation of being single. Unfortunately he was out for lunch and only back in 15 minutes. So I waited outside.

While I was there I wondered... government employees here only work from 8.30am to 5.30pm, right? They don't have to work overtime do they? And if they don't, shouldn't they just get 30 minutes lunch break? That's how they do it in Dutchland. Because, honestly, there's nothing to do for one hour. And everyone else in the private sector who works 10 to 12 hours also gets one hour lunches? Not very fair.

Anyway, this Commissioner guy was the worst person I encountered today. Absolutely didn't like him even though I only dealt with him for 2 minutes. First, he was late back from lunch. His female assistant, who was very nice but kinda dumb (let's give her the benefit of the doubt and assume that she's new), opened the doors 5 minutes past, and he strolled in 10 minutes after that. She gestured to him that I was there first, so he called me over. I said "Hi.". He just looked at my letter and form. Asked for my IC. Filled in the necessary. I said "Thank you.". Nothing from him. Fat ass. Even stamped and signed my official forms on top of a bloody newspaper! Can't even set your table up nicely in an official manner?? He only told me, "Pay there." and pointed to his assistant. When I got up, he looked at the other two couples in the room and announced (I can imagine him opening his arms in a self-important, grandiose way), "Semua." (which means, "Everyone.").

Fat ass.

I paid RM4 for that silly stamp and signature.

Went back up to the Marriage counters and waited 20 mins to send in my forms. Then another 10 mins to get the official document. Paid RM5 for it.

So far, I've only paid RM13 for everything. Pretty well cheap, eh? Very pleased.

I go down to the info desk to ask the way to Wisma Putra, the Foreign Ministry building. She directs me, but of course, I don't understand directions and I end up driving up and down that big, wide jabatan road until I decide that it's definitely not on this road. Shouldn't everything be on this road, I wondered. So I looked for a location map and discovered that it's on its own little hill, set apart from everyone else. Geez!

Nice building though. Once I reached there, it was free parking, a big plus.

Same deal with spOt_ON on flickr. Couldn't sign in to send you a message. I also colour-corrected your photo slightly, as the original is too yellow. Ahem.

Went to the guardhouse to register. I said "Nak pergi bahagian konsular." (Going to the consular section). The other guard who was sitting behind suddenly looks up and goes, "Eh, you Melayu atau Cina??". I'm so surprised by this question I actually almost say "Melayu". I think my mouth wanted to say "No no, I really AM speaking Malay even if I don't speak it well!". Instead, I went "M... m... Cina!" and he told me how surprised he was, because I spoke with a Malay accent. And I wanted to tell him that I actually don't speak it much, but what actually came out was, "Tapi saya tak cakap banyak..." and trailed off into silence. Which he took to mean that I didn't even say much, how can he tell I have the proper Malay speaking accent? And he replied that he could just tell from my accent. I suppose a Chinesey accent speaking Malay IS pretty obvious, after all.

"Nak paagi pahagian kansula..."

Anyway, the people in the konsular weren't very friendly or chatty, but at least I was in and out of there in 20 mins, with my precious stamp and signature. It cost me RM10, the most expensive so far. But still cheap enough. Very very sweet!

Wanted to hop on over to the Immigration Department next to renew my passport for another 5 years, but it was already 3.45pm and some departments close at 4pm. Kind of a bummer because I wanted to finish everything official today, but I'd rather go home and beat the rush hour traffic than drive around looking for another building.

So passport renewal is next week then. Should also take a really short time since we now have electronic passports (and it's so cool we have them!) and I think I remember being able to renew them just at a machine. Hopefully that's all it takes. We'll see next week!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Ugly new RM50 note, and the impressive Dutch

The new RM50 note is really ugly. What a waste of money spent on such a goshawful, old-fashioned design! Like frachely said, "... it looks like currency from Cambodia or some such place...". I'm not dissing the lovely Cambodia, but we are far advanced of the country, surely our currency design should show it too! Our old RM50 design was perfectly useable and quite pleasing to the eye. Check out these new hideous combo of colours on the new hideous note. I'm so disgusted thinking of the money spent on redesigning something that didn't need to be.

(Apparently it is better at deterring counterfeiting... but why not just improve the old note? This is so ugly!)

Malaysia. Gah.

Okay, due to popular demand, here is the existing and going-to-be-phased-out RM50 note. I actually thought of putting this up earlier for my foreign readers, but then got lazy because there was no photo I could find of both the old and new note together.

In my two decades of knowing about money, this is, I believe, the third design of the RM50 note. Why does it need to be redesigned so regularly? Update: Just found out it's the fourth series. So in 50 odd years of independence, we need four redesigns? Four?! How many times has the pound or the US dollar note changed in the last twenty years? Serious question. If anyone knows, please leave a comment.

... hmm...

I actually meant to write about something else, and the new RM50 note slipped under some books caught my eye so I decided to drop in a line about how ugly it is. Instead, it turned into quite a major rant. And now I've forgotten what I was gonna write about in the first place.

Oh yes (switched between browser windows and saw what triggered my post).

The Dutch have this calendar called the verjaardagskalender (is that the right word??), which is a calendar they keep every year for birthdays. It has numbers and months, but no days, so it's useable every year. It was my first time seeing such a thing this year in Dutchland. In a way, I'm kinda impressed by the practicality, and on the other hand, sort of amazed that they can keep a calendar, the same design, every single year and not get bored of it.

In English/Malaysian culture, we have a yearly calendar. We buy a new one every year (or get given one by clients/printers/shops)... I probably diligently flip mine for 2 months then leave it for the rest of the year. Frankly, I have not much use for a calendar, as my iMac can show me everything with a click of the middle button on my Mighty Mouse.

So the only reason I'd get a calendar is because it looks really nice, is innovative, creative, has some awesome illustrations... you get my drift. Therefore, I couldn't ever get a verjaardagskalender that I'd be happy with. I'd pick one up and think, "This is really nice, maybe I should get it... but what if I get sick of it in a few months? It's kind of a waste to get something like this then...". And then I'd just put it down.

So... I guess what I'm saying is how impressed I am by Dutch practicality in having something like this. And their staying power (a very good thing for me hehe). And at the same time, I'm impressed, in a slightly less positive way, that they can live such a "boring" existence, in terms of seeing the same thing every single year, when they could have a new, fancy calendar instead. Guess practicality overcomes aesthetics when it comes to the Dutch?

Does any other culture have a verjaardagskalender?

Before the inburgering exam...

Well, well, things are moving along pretty quickly now. Just found out yesterday that, contrary to what the Dutch embassy told me (grrrrr!!), I don't just make an appointment to do the exam. They should really be more informative and tell me the whole process, or at least direct me to a website which will give me instructions. Isn't one of their functions being a foreign embassy to help citizens of both countries with matters concerning both??

Thankfully, me being paranoid and nervous about the inburgering exam, checked out websites to try and find out exactly what to expect and if anything has changed, seeing that the Naar Nederland package I have is freaking 4 years old. Found a page in Dutch from which Schrobbenmaster then informed me that I had to fill in an application form to register with the IND (Immigration in Netherlands) that I wanted to take the exam. They would then give details for bank transfer of the exam payment. After processing, they would inform me and I could then make an appointment with the embassy to take the inburgering exam.

Apparently all this takes 1 to 2 weeks, so finding this information yesterday was really timely as I want to do the exam in 2 weeks.

Now I feel really pressured with time because before I take the exam, I have loads of things to do! I have to renew my passport at the Immigration Department, get a certificate of "singledom" at the National Registration Department in Putrajaya, and hop on over to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to legalise and certify it as a true copy.

Yep, I'm also curious as to why an official document from the NRD, which will have the government stamps and all, has to be legalised and certified yet again by the Foreign Ministry. Oh well. At least they're close by to each other, which is the whole point of Putrajaya, right? I'm about to test it's useability and IT HAD BETTER PROVE RIGHT.

On a more positive note, I took a mock exam last night and did pretty well on it. So I feel a little more confident about going for the real one.

(I'm getting really distracted from writing because I'm watching Friends at the same time, so I think I'm gonna sign off right now.)

Oh, and one more thing... goodputty::paperie has something new - and free - for Christmas.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Schrobbenmaster in Kampung Baru and MORE bad Engrish!

I woke up this morning with a dry mouth. Must be the Ruffles I was stuffing my face with last night. They're so yummy!

Because I've been waking up early every day for the past few days, I woke up at an irritatingly early 9.30am this morning. So I pulled on my eye mask and slept again till 12pm. Bliss! Strangely (or maybe not so strangely), in my dream I was decorating a shop which was in the middle of nowhere. Signs of Restaurant City creeping into my dreamworld as well?

Hmm... I also dreamt that my partner had found someone new, but then I started doing ballet all over this airport/shopping mall, and suddenly he realised that his new interest wasn't that great after all. It was a nice reunion. Heh. Straaaaaaange!

Anyway, speaking about partners, let's get back into the real world. Just found this solitary photo of Schrobbenmaster in Kampung Baru snapping photos, tourist-like. He looks really... Caucasian in here. Which is when I realised that, normally, when I look at him, I never think of him as that. Is that strange, you think? But I guess cuz he looks all touristy here, it reminded me that he indeed, is Caucasian.

And here are two last random photos from my Blog folder. Then I can delete it! And remove a little clutter from my desktop! Muahahahahaha.....

I love those striped pyjama pants of mine.

Anyway, this is a flyer for a cake shop. Those flyers are always mass-distributed on people's cars and mailboxes. I just thought it was funny they called a cake "Mocha Barbarian". I really wonder if they intended to write something else, but spelt it wrongly, just like my all-time favourite signboard which says "No Dumpling" instead of "No Dumping".

(Incidentally, in the flyer, Doraemon is spelt wrongly, and so is Raspberry.)

Among the other bad English printed on this box, check out the white words at the bottom. If you can't read:

The Cartoon Shape, Interesting Function! Let we the together small animal studies music together, feel a happiness together.
I just love spotting really bad English. Perhaps someone should learn how to use Google Translate. Or perhaps they should improve the translation system on Google for Chinese and Japanese languages.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The senseless way to get into The Netherlands

In the inburgering exam I have to take in order to get my temporary residence permit in The Netherlands, there is a section called 'nazeggen', which means 'repeat sentences'.

It is an absolutely pointless test to see if you should enter the country or not. This exam is for absolute beginner's level Dutch. If they want to test our level of Dutch, the more sensible sections include answering questions and hearing a short story then seeing how much you can retell after hearing it.

But to repeat precisely Dutch sentences??

You wonder why I'm complaining?

The sort of sentences they give are expressions like (in Dutch) "It is so warm that the birds are falling off the roof" or randoms like, "It is my fault that I like gardening more than you do".


How can a beginner level hear and catch each of those words spoken quickly, much less remember them? They range from 5 to 11 words in one sentence.

Would make much more sense, if they really wanted to ask us to repeat sentences, to ask us to repeat sentences that we should know at our level. Sentences like, "Can you tell me the time?" or "Which platform does this train leave from?".

Again, I say, how the heck are we expected to be able to repeat precisely random sentences that a sour, lonely woman sitting behind a desk makes up in her head?

IND Nederland! Come on, please, if you have to force everyone to sit for an entry exam, at least make it sensible!

Obstacle course in Seremban

First off, let's start with a really adorable picture of my dogs.

Now that's over with...

Several months ago, I took part in an obstacle course in Seremban. I've always wanted to do obstacle courses cuz I love a mental + physical challenge now and then.

Royal Yelly and I partnered each other in this. This particular course was high up in the trees, not one of those crawling under obstacles and stuff you see on TV. There always has to be one person on the ground, watching, encouraging and reminding their partner what to do. I guess when you're up there you tend to forget simple guidelines like looking straight ahead, or putting your hands in certain positions for optimum balance.

That's Royal Yelly on the right carefully switching the big clips that hold us safely to the wire should we slip and fall. There is also a way to clip them up so they don't get twisted and accidentally open.

This section was the SCARIEST of them all. Looking up, I wondered why everyone took ages to cross this, but once I was up there... oh boy... the ropes hanging down with the tyres are actually the ONLY thing that you hold on to while trying to walk across on that single line of rope. And the tyres are actually not that close to your body. Shit, I was hanging on to my dear life on this section. The others were a breeze, but this was the real challenge.

That's me at the end of that horrible horrible section.

This is the last section which was fairly easy until the end when it wasn't as tight and it started swaying.

This is to show how high we are.

I just found it funny that we have such an association with a shopfront announcing it like that. So old school.

Tired now, can't end this post in a nice and humourous way.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Languages, frachely's visit, and I'm back at Barsonic!

Well, hello after a long time!

Been having pretty busy days for the past week or so. I don't like being busy! But that's life.

To start from the most recent happenings, frachely was in KL over the weekend staying at my abode. After Dutch on Saturday, I picked her up from Corus Hotel in town, followed a Google map screenshot I saved onto my iPod (so organised and high-tech huh) and arrived safely at Sookie's house to collect money from her grandmother.

Ooh, that sounded wrong.

... to collect payment for some work I did for Sookie's company.

Yeah, that sounds less gangster-y.

I also had to attempt to speak Cantonese to this sweet little old lady and it felt so funny. I was using really basic words but I think my accent and intonation went alright. Albeit a little Western but still better than a (typical) Westerner's attempt.

I remember last week at Canton-i, I asked the waiter in Cantonese for the WiFi password (which I had to rehearse in my head beforehand), and he pointed at the menu and said it's "Canton i", I wanted to ask him if it was with the dash/hyphen. So, in my head I was thinking "Speak in a foreign language!" and I really almost said, "Met de dash?"

Okay, so "dash" in English might not be "dash" in Dutch, but I'm sure most Dutch people would've understood me, especially when seeing me point at the dash in the name.

By the way, silly waiter, the password is "dragon-i" not "canton-i"! Wasted so much of my time trying it and failing until I had to ask the captain instead.

But anyway, I digress. After collecting my money, we drove to Bangsar where we had lunch at Delicious. I had the Duck Confit Spaghettini which was full of olive oil and really nice. The hot mocha is also good. Very thick, but better than diluted.

Then a walk up the road to Moca, Mooie and Tea & Sympathy. My three favourite places to shop at. I'm losing hope in Mooie though, because everything there is way too "young" for me. Or too Hong Kong.

Home to rest, and for dinner I made my famous Chicken Basil. Except without the basil. So we renamed it the Chicken, Peppers & Coconut Milk Delight. And the use of the word "Delight" is just to poke fun at Chinese restaurants' naming of dishes with "Delight", "Special", etc, when it really isn't anything special at all. And it probably just means they don't wanna write what's in the dish.

After dinner we changed and got ready for Lapsap at Barsonic (woohoo!). We arrived quite late and missed the guestlist by a measly 12 minutes. Stupid people at the door. Come on, it's just 12 minutes... if it was half an hour, I would understand. But don't you also go above the speed limit by more than 12 km/h AT LEAST??? I'll give you my whole wardrobe of (stylish) clothes if you can prove you don't. Pffft.

Lapsap was awesome by the way. Halfway through there was this white dude who started playing. He was alright for a few minutes but after some time it was really monotonous and almost boring! You can't compensate by turning the volume up and blowing cold ice air into the crowd! Thankfully, Lapsap took over after that and wow, the energy was just explosive from then on.

Okay... I only just wrote about one day and I'm already feeling exhausted. Here ends my blog post on this cool, rainy Monday.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Reasons for your stupidly long wait at bars

Okay, what I started in reply to a comment by RedDog in the What a bartender sees post...

I agree it takes really long to order, pay and get your change at a bar. It's really annoying because even when I'm working behind the bar, I can see people waiting for their change while the beer they ordered for their friends is slowly losing it's head (probably could be used as a metaphor for the person waiting as well). And I feel kinda bad for those people. Also when ice starts melting in their cocktails and they end up with something more watery than alcoholy.

One of the reasons it goes so slowly (at least in WIP, and probably the same in the majority of bars) is that there are so many drinks to have to make. Maybe it's not the same in the West, where most people order beer or straight drinks (liquor + mixer). Those can be done in a jiffy. In WIP, loads of people order cocktails. Those take on average of 3-5 minutes to make. So firstly, the rate of outgoing drinks is low.

Secondly, in a big bar like WIP or Zouk, there will be about 8-10 people working behind it. There has to be clear separation of duties. Hence, two people at cocktails, two people at tapped beers, etc. And there are only two people who are authorised to key in orders into the machine. And those two are normally the supervisor/manager, who are on cocktail duty (more complicated drinks). So they aren't always free. I sometimes find myself waiting next to the cashier for them to come back and key my order in to be made.

Next, when the customer pays, the money goes to a different cashier, because the people behind the bar don't handle the cash. Maybe because of dirty hands, maybe because of complications with both dealing with drinks and calculating money (when it gets busy, your head does start to go a bit bonkers if you don't remain calm). At the bar, there is only one cashier which receives and returns money. Sometimes that person isn't there. Sometimes that person has loads of other bills to deal with. Hence the slowness.

Everything added up, when you go to a bar on a busy night, things do tend to slow down. There is probably a better way, perhaps hiring just one sole person to be the cashier at the bar would do it. But then again, WIP is understaffed at the moment. I can't say the same about Zouk because I don't know about them. But if WIP is finding it hard to find staff to recruit, I'm assuming there's not many people out there who are available. So maybe these places are always understaffed, hence the irritating slowness at all bars.

Perhaps then, people should stop offering cocktails on their menus. And we should start ordering easier drinks. Or perhaps we should all take up part-time jobs behind bars to ease the load. Thank you, thank you. Seems that I'm doing my part for the community (albeit the drunken community) after all.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

PHOTOS: Central Market old facades

I'm currently working on my Dutch teacher's website design. Have a rough idea of how I want it to look like, but can't get the exact design out of my head. It's in there somewhere, that lightbulb of a design... just need to nudge it out lovingly :P

So in the meantime, here are some more old photos from the Blog folder on my desktop.

I suppose in the spirit of travelling, tourists, foreigners and Malaysia, Truly Asia, I'll show some shots I snapped from my phone while driving in town. Don't mistake Kuala Lumpur for Bangkok or most other South East Asian countries. It is a modern city in terms of its buildings, nightlife and skyscrapers. However, we do still retain some of the *ahem* old character. Which I'm quite fond of, by the way.

I believe this batch of photos was taken as I was driving past Central Market, towards the Masjid Jamek area.

I like the character of these buildings. If only the people in the area would be a little more civilised.

I don't mean THEY'RE uncivilised, I just mean the people there in general. I like how they're wearing hoodies and caring about being fashionable. It's just a tad funny to be wearing hoodies in KL. But then *ahem* I do wear boots to work behind the bar. I have the excuse that it's more comfortable for standing around for 6 hours than ballet flats though. Yeahhh.....

Maybe they're not so uncivilised after all, if they oppose the ISA. And not everyone can be artistic. Give them a break, man :P

However, with the effort put in, an 8 year old CAN produce artwork like this. Don't be crude, people. If you wanna get your voice heard, do it in a manner that appeals to people, not repel them!

Okay, back to work.

What a bartender sees

Just a quick one before heading into the shower and popping a Midsomer on the new Samsung LCD ;)

Was posted at the cocktail station tonight at WIP. Nicer to make straight drinks like whisky water, whisky coke, vodka lime, gin tonic etc. Not as tiring and painful for my muscles as making mojitos.

Interesting watching people all around. Sometimes people treat you differently when you're standing behind a bar instead of in front of one. For the record, please never call someone by the hand gesture of "Come come" like you're calling an animal. That is just plain rude, and it shows your level of sophistication.

Westerners tend to be nice, with the exception of a few, who are usually female, who are really arrogant and can't seem to smile when making any orders. Guys are jollier but can sometimes be really impatient. Hey, if you come to a popular bar when it's busy you do have to give us some time.

Kinda good-looking people tonight. Well, only two or three, but those two or three were much better-looking than average so it helps the night pass by easier. My standards are high.

Oritey then, I'm all sticky and yucky so catch you guys tomorrow!

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Sometimes I'm proud of myself

I'm so glad I spent all that money in previous (more prosperous) times on my design books. I used to "steal" books from Slavedriver's studio and keep them for ages. Proved very useful. But he's recently asked for some of them back, one of which is a packaging/folding design book. I thought, "Bah, I don't need that because I hate packaging and I don't really do work like that anyway.".

And today I realised that I do, in fact, need it to see how to fold a CD cover. I tried Googling for it but no luck. Then the lightbulb "ding"ed above my head and I remembered that I did buy one such book some time ago. Walked into the office (these days I work on the dining table... gives me more of a casual mood) and found said book. Smiled to myself and gave myself a pat on my back for being so foresighted.

Incidentally, did you know that 'Googling' is a proper word according to the spellchecker? It told me 'realised' was spelt wrongly (Americans!) but 'Googling' is a perfectly legitimate word! Amazing. One day perhaps 'Goodputtying' will be a word too. There goes the big red underline telling me it isn't yet.

Okay back to work. Just had to blog about my ingenious and foresighted thinking.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Busy bee! MJ's This Is It and are Chinese men really crooked?

It's been a few days since I last posted, but I have been so busy the last weekend that I literally only opened my laptop for 2 hours on Sunday night out of the entire weekend.

It started with Saturday morning, getting up early for Dutch class, and facing a traffic jam that's worse than weekdays (seriously, what is happening??), then straight to Bangsar for dim sum with Mumsy Bumsy, Royal Yelly, aunt, uncle, cousin and grandma. I gave a ride to my Dutch teacher to Bangsar and we had a nice conversation on the way over. In English though, otherwise I would probably have taken the wrong route back to Bangsar and ended up at KLIA.

I was scheduled to work at WIP that night, so when I got home I tried to get a couple hours of rest. I've been so tired the past week, no idea why.

On Friday night, though, Mumsy Bumsy's friend got tickets to watch Michael Jackson's This Is It at Pavilion, and I was really looking forward to it and seeing what he had planned for his fans on his last ever tour.

Well, unfortunately of course, he didn't even make it to the tour. But it was a really good watch. A documentary-style, behind-the-scenes film. It was matter-of-fact, it wasn't a tribute, nor like his memorial where everyone is partial towards MJ. This was straight documenting of his tour preparation, but of course with very brief statements from his dancers, directors and technical people about how he is/was like to work with. The dancers' parts were the most touching because they were so overwhelmed about being able to dance with him onstage. I'm sure not one of them needed to be taught the choreography for songs like Thriller, Smooth Criminal, Beat It and loads others!

On another note, I just heard a saying over the weekend that I've never heard before:
The only thing straight about a Chinese man is his hair.

Haha. Pretty true, I guess! Poor guy if he's born with naturally wavy hair then.