Sunday, December 31, 2006

there's something about .....2006

How time flies. Just about exactly a year ago, I wrote about my year in 2005 and my resolutions (yes... I do try to achieve them) see link

And now it's time to do that for 2006.

Top 10 Highlights of 2006.

No.10 I did a post on my bro-in-law sometimes in March this year and registered a unusually high hits. See link This is because Mr Wang mentioned it and later it was picked up in

No.9 Another of my post on Miss Universe's erhem was highlight by Miyagi in TODAY. See link

(Actually the only reason why the above 2 make it to the "highlight" is because this year has been a boring year and I have difficulty finding 10 highlights. It's not for the ego)

No.8 The amount of sick-spells and medical bills this year. The whole family has a sick spell during the new year period. And during the haze in October, I had ulcers in my throat that lasted 1.5 months. And my family got sick during the holidays as well that lasted about 1 month.

No. 7 Coolcat moved house. As mentioned, in a year of no-event, this can also be my highlight.

No. 6 My petrol in my car went dry. See link

No. 5 I finally voted in an Election!!! First time and don't know when I will have another go at it. It's a good feeling to have a hand in nation building. Now I can proudly say I voted PM LEE in.

No. 4 My trip to Teochew. I felt I have touch base with my roots. And the fact that I'm there with my Dad and my Son was extra sweet.

No.3 My son calling me PAPA. To witness the growing process of my son is simply amazing.

No. 2 Discovering my cyst. Emotionally, this is rock bottomed. See link

No. 1 Going thru Cystoscopy. Physically, this is rock bottomed. I think this might even be the top 3 highlight of my life, not to even mentioned 2006. See link

2005 Resolutions

Let's see if I have met any of them:

No.1. Learn how to set up webpage. I think this is a natural progression from Blog.

Status: Not even near. In fact, I think this is too ambitious and I will strike this out for the rest of my life. However, I did manage to start on a business blog to be launch soon. So I think in blogging terms, I have progressed a little bit.

No.2. To improve on my business and hope for a breakthru year.

Status: Met. Phew...

No.3. To become a better father. I think I'm lagging from my wife.

Status: I tried. And my wife went further ahead.

No.4. To lose weight. I have lost 2 kg in the last few months, hope to hit 75kg.

Status: It ballooned further. I gain back that 2 kg I lost in late December last year and even more. In fact the last 2 months, I felt heavier. Damn.

No.5. To find a new hobby.

Status: Still searching.

2007 Resolutions

Carried forward:

1.) To Improve on my Business and hope for a breakthru year. In fact, this shall remain permanent.

2.) To catch up with my wife to be a good parent. To be rephrased.

3.) To lose weight. Ok.. let's be realistic. 78kg will be my target for this year.

4.) To find a new hobby.

New Resolutions:

2A) To read more books with my son.

3A.) Be healthy. To cut down on visits to Clinic by half to almost zero in 2007.

5) Can making babies be a Resolution, can.. ok lah...


Monday, December 25, 2006

there's something about ..... christmas

Ho Ho Ho .... Merry Christmas!


Recently newspaper publish a list of items people likes to give as well as hate to receive as Christmas Gifts.

Rank no.1 for gifts people like to give is Chocolate.

Rank no.1 for gifts people hate to receive is Towels.

If you ask me, these are the following items I hate to receive:

1.) Cups. If they are beautiful, at least you can still recycle them as gifts the following year. If they looked like those you find in kopitiam, throwing them away is a waste, keeping them takes up space, giving them away embarass me.

2.) Candles. I need to buy lighter to use them since I don't smoke. Also, you always worried about fire hazard. Next, if you light them in air con room, air con man will tell you that it's bad for the air con.

3.) Towels. This is not so bad since you can keep them in storage and let your occasion guest that come over to stay at your place to use them. But still.... receiving towel as present has a different feeling than say receving a Cartier Watch or a LV wallet.


Overheard in Takashimaya....

shopper to sales girl: Is that watch male or female?

Sales girl: it's unisex.

Wah... this is what i call a good sales girl.

But I didn't know watch also got sexual inclination.

Thanks to Vivo City, there were 167000 lesser shoppers on Orchard road and marina area on Saturday Night.
It took me just under 1 hour to leave home on Saturday evening at 6.20pm to reach Wisma Atria, found a car park lot, go to the food court and got a table by 7.15pm. A feat considering it's a Saturday before Christmas.

A little christmas trivial: Do you know that Santa Clause is "invented" by.........


Santa is just a marketing idea to sell Coca Cola. Why do you think Santa is in Red/white colour theme. It prove to be so successful that it became a christmas tradition.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

there's something about ..... autobiographies

OJ Simpson - IF I DID IT

Britney Spears - OOPPS... I DID IT AGAIN


Saddam Hussein - I'LL BE HANGED IF I DID IT

George Bush - WHAT DID I DO?

Tony Blair - I DID IT BECAUSE "W" DID IT.....


Christopher Lee - I DID IT

there's something about ..... casinos, theme pk, shopping and GST

This is the economic piece I mentioned much earlier.

My trip to HK/China really opened my eyes. I had intended to see for myself what Singapore is lacking and what the rave was all about in HK.

But why did I sound so negative about the state of economy of Singapore? Afterall, didn't Singapore register a very strong growth the last 2 years?

The reason for my negativity is because Hong kong is taking alot of businesses away from Singapore. We used to say Singapore is Clean, efficient, bilingual etc. But these are no longer our forte in keeping businesses in Singapore. You just have to make a trip to Hong Kong, take a serious look into Hong Kong and you realised Singapore is losing our edge as a destination, both as a tourist attraction as well as a place to work and live.

Anybody who says Singapore is a shopping paradise, should think twice. Hong Kong has a vibrancy that Singapore couldn't match. Shops remains open till 11pm. Their salesperson's level of service and committment make even Singapore's Giordano's staffs looks amateurish. In the past, where they struggle with mandarin and English, they now speaks Mandarin well enough to make a deal. No doubt, some sectors in Hong Kong still struggles with English, but they are improving by the leaps and bounds. Singaporean's edge as a bilingual city is under-threat.

They also have a hunger for success that stems from the fact that they are next to China and there are lots of money to earn from China. The China market is so huge that you cannot ignore the economic benefits. The corporate tax for companies in HK is also lower than Singapore. And it just make much more sense to setup office in Hong Kong. This applies even to those MNC given the headquarters status in Singapore.

I recalled one such occurence where one of my MNC clients decided to move the whole headquarters to Hong Kong. And soon after announcing to the company's staff about this decision, the president of the company received a call from Singapore Government. While it's still an urban legend, it is understood that the HK government had called the Singapore Government to gloat about their success in luring this MNC over to HK.

Recently HK decided to abolish their plans to introduce GST after much complaints and demonstrations. On the other hand, Singapore is planning to increase from the existing 5% to 7%. Both the countries mentioned about using the GST monies to help the poor.

In Singapore, this increase in GST was met with lots of criticism on the government. Likewise, the casino decision was also much disputed by Singaporeans over the last 2 years. But unlike HK, Singaporean's complaints are unlikely to reverse our Singapore Government's decision.

But I do agree with the government's move to build casinos in Singapore. In Hong Kong, you have a macau for the gambling fix. You have a Disneyland and others for the tourist dollars. They even have a Madame Tussard.

I read an article from their local newspaper. It is reported that Disneyland has a visitorship of 5 million in their first year of operation. Out of these 5 million, 2.5m came from Mainland China. In contrast, Singapore attracted about 1m from mainland china. This figure is from tourism board. tourist statistics

Now, if that 2.5m mainland chinese spend about 3 days in HK, their total contribution to HK's economy is frightening as they would have spent on other tourists attractions, the hotel stays, the food and the shopping. The Hong Kong retailers are telling you that Mainland China is their biggest source of business now. Singapore?

So how do you persuade these Chinese to come to Singapore? I think Sentosa IR with Universal Studio could be a start. We need a big brand name in Singapore.

If we could achieve the targeted tourism numbers down the road, the likely GST receivable from the tourism numbers will be huge. And I got no doubt that these revenues will help Singapore in a bigger ways.

You can calculate the additional revenues from the additional 2%.

If we can achieve 15 million vistors a year. And assuming they each spend $500 in Singapore on food and hotel. Total GST receivable is about $525m assuming 7%. The additional 2% added $150m. So the longer the tourists stays, the more GST we can receive. And this number is also assuming that they only contribute $500 per tourist. Probably a conservative figure. So we need all the initiatives to bring in the visitors and make them stay longer.

So we do need GST to get more from the tourists and perhaps lower our company tax or personal income tax to attract more companies to setup offices in Singapore. Or perhaps lower medical costs and lower school fees or lower transport fares.

With cleaner air, we are definitely a better choice to live-in than in HK in the short term. But what happens if HK clean up their pollution? They did say that all it takes is $10billion to clean up the air. Where would that leave us again?

there's something about ..... sailing

This is another example why the rich becomes richer.

Because when they are young, the richer kids are exposed to "sports" like Sailing, while the poorer kids are exposed to "sports" like canoeing.

In the end, Sailing becomes a recognised sports and these kids become richer by winning golds in Asian Games.

While the poorer kids can only rent canoes at East Coast park.

Of course, I'm just kidding. These sailers must have come from diverse backgrounds lah. (politically-correct statements)

there's something about ..... geography

I've always been poor in Geography during school days. If I average out my geography scores, it would be in the red. So naturally I opted out from Secondary 3 onwards. And since then, I have not taken any keen interest to learn more about Geography.

And now... the Asian Games just added to my confusion.

You mean....

Qatar (where the games are held)
Saudi Arabia
etc etc

are Asian Countries???!?!?!? Aren't they Middle-East????

After I think about it, perhaps they are indeed Asia. Afterall, they are call MIDDLE-EAST and we are called SOUTH-EAST.

And interestingly, ASIAN GAMES kept out Australia. Now... there are sectors in the World that says Australia is considered part of Asia.

And how about countries like:

Are they part of Pakanistan?

Now I know why I Sucks at Geography.... because I can't pronounce their names.

Monday, December 11, 2006

there's something about ..... sports

Last night, there was an EPL game between Chelsea and Arsenal. 2 of the most popular soccer clubs in the world playing it out. EPL is the most watched league in the WORLD. You pay a premium just to catch the league in SCV.

As a soccer fan myself, this match is almost certainly not to be missed.

BUT.... instead.... I wasn't watching the match.

I decided to become sissy and I watched Asian Games where Remy Ong is fighting out for the Gold Medal in Bowling.

Yes... I WATCHED BOWLING!!!!!!! Over EPL!!! Over Chelsea vs Arsenal!!!!!!!

BOWLING!!!!!! You know that so-called sports where you throw a ball over 10 standing pins down a lane.

But why did I sacrifice EPL over Bowling?

Because after all these years, I still couldn't figure out how this can be a sport and I need to be convinced!!!

And after watching how Remy loses the Gold Medal, I'm still convinced that Bowling is not a sport.

Your only enemy is yourselves. You play your own game and hope the other party plays badly, and then you win. How the other competitor played doesn't affect you much. It's not like there is a strategy. You always try to go for the maximum knockout everytime you throw the ball. If you couldn't get a strike, it's nobodies' fault. It's something that you couldn't help it. It could be down to luck, it could be down to a slightly wrong twist.

So since you couldn't control your own fate and you couldn't control your opponent's fate, and it's down to luck.... do you call this a Sport?

Saturday, December 09, 2006

there's something about ..... test-patterns

Call me naive....

I didn't think test-patterns are the same the whole wide world.

Call me lucky....

How many different test-patterns have you seen round the world?

Call me crazy....

When you are in China and there isn't much things to do, even a test-pattern would
interest you.

Friday, December 08, 2006

there's something about ..... china

During my stay in China, I've met many people doing various form of business.

I've seen so many expensive cars on the road and you immediately wonder how much these costs in Teochew, China. To my astonishment, a Toyota Camry costs approximately $400k RMB. That works out to be about $80k singapore dollars. Their BMW 3 series is only about $100k Sing, but their 5 series is about the same price as Singapore.

Their GEELY brand of car is about $75k RMB which is our $15k Sing.

Their mobile phones of International brands like Nokia, Motorola, Sony Ericsson cost the same price as those in Singapore, without contract. In China, they do not practice signing a long-term contract to lower the phone price and every phone you buy is at it's full price.

However, every guy on the street.. and I mean EVERY GUY.. is using a handphone with camera.

These acquaintances that I met are using top of the range Motorola Phones and Sony Ericsson. Some of them are pda phones.

These acquaintances told me that Chinese people do not trust chinese products and everyone are buying international brands as the quality is better.

But if every chinese guy is to earn about $2000 RMB a month and a phone cost about $3000 RMB, how to they afford to buy into these high end products?

And not only phones. Giordano brands cost the same as those in HK. Nike and addidas costs more than HK. Things are definitely not any cheaper in China and yet these low income group is able to afford expensive gadgets like computer and handphones. How did they do it?

This is when they finally revealed.

You see, the young chinese generation of the 20s are borned in the days where "1 is enough policy" is not established yet. Many of them are borned into big families of 4-5 siblings.

And since most of these siblings are working, their household incomes could range from $5000 to $8000 RMB a month. And since one high-end phone cost about $3000 RMB, what the siblings do is to combine their resources and take turn buying these gadgets until everyone of them own one of it.

Sometimes it's better to have more siblings. I think it's time I produce more offsprings.

there's something about ..... half-gate

Someone dropped into our MRT's track again.

Seriously, it's a major designed flaw from MRT. Granted, many railway tracks round the way is open and anyone could have dropped onto the track on purpose or carelessness.

However, railway tracks are railway tracks unless every train in the world goes underground. And mostly, these railway tracks were built like donkey years ago and they belongs to the old technology.

MRT trains are different. We built the station, and we build the infrastructure from scratch. And when you build an open platform, you are being naive to ensure that no one ever will drop into the track. Someone may die. Disruptions will take place.

So, half-gate was suggested. SMRT said that:

1.) firstly, it's too costly to implement half-gate to all the above-ground stations.

2.) People can still climb over.

The first argument is non-valid. SMRT earns lots of money. They should spend those money for safety reasons regardless the costs.

The second argument is also silly. We have laws and regulations, but people can still break the law. Stealing is a crime, but petty thefts still take place. You don't argue that since theft will take place, we might as well abolish the rules and regulations.

If anyone is seen to be attempting to climb over, that would have given enuff time for people to react before a disaster take place. And this half-gate acts as a deterrent to people who think it's convenient for them to push someone off the track or commit suicide. Some short fellow may think that it's daunting for them to climb the half-gate and commit suicide.

Now... how is this relevant to my trip to Hong kong?

This pic is taken at from Hong Kong's MTR's network. It's an open platform and they think that half-gate is necessary for safety reasons.

So is SMRT is saying that HK MRT is silly to implement such expensive design?

I hope SMRT can wake up and think about the consequences. If they think that half-gate will not solve the problem, then implement full-gate. If already half-gate is that expensive and to implement full-gate is going to bankrupt SMRT, then let another tragedy take place again.

Atlas, they view tragedy as just another statistic.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

there's something about ..... urinating

I think We Chinese, have this problem when it comes to urinating in a public toilet.

In our Singapore toilets, you have posters designed by our local artiste, Chew, on how to urinate properly in Singapore toilet's urinal.

And China has it as well. So I can only conclude that Chinese has a problem using a urinal.

But.. how difficult can it be? Why do we need tips on how to urinate?

It's that simple:

step 1.) you unzip your zipper.

2.) You navigate through your pants to find your penis.

3.) You found it, please make sure you handle it with care.

4.) You try to take it out of your pants through the zipper.

5.) you urinal into whatever it's in front of you.

6.) tap it if necessary to make sure every single drop, drop into whatever it's in front of you.

7.) you put it back to what it was previously.

8.) you zip back only you are very sure your penis is not sticking out of the zipper.

9.) The end.'s that simple in Singapore.

However, in China.... it's a little bit more complicated.

You need a ruler.

there's something about ..... addidas

My wife's sneakers gave way when we arrived in Teochew, China. Hers was a nike brand and nothing short of internation brand would do.

And of course, we are excited about the prospect of buying cheaper sneakers shoes in China. Afterall, almost every international brands that we used in Singapore has the label "made in China".

So we made our way to a local departmental store.

From a distance, we saw a sneakers boutique that resembles alot like Addidas. The way the merchandises are displayed, the 3 strips at the side of the shoes etc etc.

And so we happily walk into the boutique.

You see, we don't examine things clearly. When you are holiday, you are mostly guided by mood and feelings. You don't go about rationalising anything.

And just when we ask to try on a pair, did we realise that it's not ADDIDAS.

It's ADDNICE!!!!!

Add what?!?!?!? It's ADDNICE!



I think the sales girl realised our sudden shock and immediately explain that this is a Germany brand with a long history.

They even have a website on it.

We have no other options. So we bought the cheapest addnice sneakers just to ensure it could last till we find another sneaker elsewhere.

I forgot to take a picture of the shoes as we have given it away to my in-laws.

So do you pronounce as ADD- NICE (as in you are very nice)

or do you pronounce as ADD-NICE (as in Nice, France)

or do you pronounce as ADD-NI-CE (as in you pronounce Nike)

Anyway.. don't pray pray.

Addnice aside.... China's translation on NIKE is


So if you go there and ask for NAI KEY..... good luck to you.

Monday, December 04, 2006

there's something about ..... southern province of China

I'm not Tan Ah Teck of Under One roof but I did visit the southern province of China.

I was in Teochew, China for "exploration" trip. It's my first trip to China since their economic reform and I'm curious to see how far they have progressed. Of course, if you go to Shanghai or Beijing, you would realise that they are probably way up there.

So I guess the best guage is at a province.

We were picked up by a aquaintance in his car. His car is of the "GEELY" brand that recently made their way to Singapore.

Half way thru the journey, I knew they have progressed. They no longer played Teresa Teng's music in their car. They played this:

I only managed to capture a short one. But the whole version comes with a 1 sentence lyrics that almost everyone in Singapore has heard of :


Wah... They have indeed progressed.

there's something about ..... duty-free

Someone at the airport needs spelling lessons. This picture taken at Changi Airport Terminal 1.

there's something about ..... biometric passport

My old passport expired sometime mid-year and after hearing that Singapore Goverment is implementing a new biometric passport wef from August, I decided to wait for it.

Of course, passport being passport.. does it matter if it's biometric or chemetric or mathemetric?

Of course, Singaporean being Singaporean... even if it's chemetric or mathemetric, we would still wait for it.

And so the day of reckoning arrived just 1 week before my trip.

It was reported in the papers that people had to queue 2 to 4 hours for it. Damn the papers, the article came after I collected my passport, otherwise I would have gone really early to pick it up.

I waited about 2 hours on a Friday lunch break. When I arrived my queue number and the served number is about 200 numbers difference. When I pick up my passport, the queue number and the served number is about 400.

Now.. what is so special about this Biometric passport? And what the hell in Biometric?

This main purposes of Biometric Passport are:

1.) To boost Singapore Pools Income.

All Biometric Passport comes with a BRAND NEW Passport number. It's no longer your NRIC number. And it's so random that we have now 1 more additional number to remember in our life alongside atm numbers, bank account numbers, pin numbers, password, i/c number of all your family members, and now.. new passport numbers.

And following Singapore Culture, I just have to buy 4D on it. I spent $100 on my new passport numbers. Of course, if I had kenna some prizes out of it, I wouldn't have done this posting.

I really don't see why they have to do that. It's biometric. It's not mathemetric. Meaning to say... numbers is not crucial, the face feature is what they wanted. If they have to differentiate Biometric and normal passport.... just add another alphabet in front of your old passport number lor. Like if old passport number is S71234567A. Then the new biometric would be BS71234567A. But BS also stands for Bullsh@#

2.) To show off to 3rd World Airports that they are so backward that should just shut down their airports and become farmers.

I went to Shantou, China. Their airport custom officer has no equipment to scan our BIOMETRIC Passport and we were asked to wait outside their main office while they check with Singapore Government I believe.

If you are someone that gets anxiety attack easily... this would surely trigger it. And the worse thing is you wouldn't know how to tell them that this is the new BIOMETRIC Passport ..... in chinese.

The wait was about 20 mins. Ministry of Manpower also very smart. They already train us to wait 2 to 4 hours for the passport and any other inconvenience in the world will pale in comparison.

You think Singapore Passport very Big Deal hor... everywhere sure can pass easily one hor... scanner cannot scan... means cannot scan... Biometric or not.

On hindsight, I wouldn't have gotten this passport. I would have saved $100 and 20 mins.

Friday, December 01, 2006

there's something about ..... "taxi"

This blog post is on a "taxi" that we took on our way back on Thursday morning.

No... I'm not doing my blog on "Momento" style.. which is reverse-chronologically. Just happens that I think this topic link closely with my previous post on luggage.

You see... on on way to the Airport from home at the start of our trip, we actually book a MPV cab. The $16 booking fee is worth it given that we do not have to go on 2 cabs which might be a logistically nightmare.

On our return, of course we are not able to book a cab in time. I was hoping to catch a MPVcab at the Taxi Queue that could transport all my luggages at 1 go plus the 5 of us.

Before I could hit the Taxi Queue, I was "touted" by a guy that offers us "minivan" ride that costs $35. You knew it's touting because he tries to "offer" us inconspicuously by not talking to us directly but merely wispering the offer through the side of his lips.

I told him no and decided to go to the Taxi Queue. My family were all ready for it but I told them that we are not sure about them as they are not from the local taxi firms. My family feels that it's alright because this is Singapore.

I decided to check out the Taxi Queue first and realised that there aren't any MPV in sight. So I return back to the guy and told him that we will accept their offer.

We were led to the basement and I realised that this is actually a "syndicate" offering such niche services. This syndicate has quite a few minivans and he has a proper way of allocating drivers to the minivans.

Of course, I lived to tell this story.

Throughout the whole journey, I didn't feel we were in any danger. It's a mercedes van that moves at a relatively good van speed. The service level is not any different from the local taxi companies. They load and unload your luggages.
But seriously, it's not our fault. There is nothing at the airport that caters to our need. Just imagine... we need 2 cabs, plus luggage fee, plus midnight charge, the total costs would have been nearer to $50.... but seriously it's also the logistic challenge of going on 2 cabs that push us to take up this offer.

In other words, we are satisfied with this "illegal" transportation.

there's something about ..... holiday

Just came back on Thursday morning from Hong Kong and China.

It's the first trip for my kid and the whole family including my parents were really looking forward to the trip.

On the eve of the trip, my wife came to me and "warned" me that "we have a situation." Realised that it wasn't an "!" but a "." So it must be something that doesn't bother her.

So I asked her "what situation?"

She said that we have too much to bring and it's already spilling over to 3 big luggages. I told her that if those are necessary, then it's necessary.

She replied "no... that wasn't the situation."

I asked impatiently "then?"

She said "The situation is that you are the only person that has to carry all the luggages. I've to carry the kid, your parents couldn't take the luggage. We have 3 big luggages, 1 stroller, perhaps 4 hand carriers."

I went speechless.

That.... sets the tone for the whole trip.

Needless to say, I'm more tired after the trip than before the trip. And like what coolcat says.. I need another trip to recharge from this trip.

To give you an idea what I have to carry, this picture is taken at the airport when I came back home.

This looks like what you would bring to Europe for 1 month.

More posts to come.... one lengthy piece on economics at the end.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

on holiday

will be back on 30th Nov.

Do not forsee any entries possible overseas.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

there's something about ..... betting

I can't help laughing when I saw ST today and realised our local man Joshua Ang came in Second in Betfair Asian Poker Tournament. see link

What is so funny is the picture.

I had thought Joshua Ang won the tournament. He was "STARING DOWN" the opponent.. Singapore Secret Society Style and his finals opponent, an Australian, was looking at his cards very tentatively. It's almost like he was so afraid of looking at Joshua.

Joshua has done Singapore Proud by the way his portray the image. Body Slanting, one arm behind the chair, staring down at opponent with the "Ni Ga Wah Sio Sim Dam Boh" look. Wah... Damn Classic... 堵 侠 style.

But reading further, I realised we lost the tournament until the very last card. And we came in second. So the picture gives a wrong impression.

I can almost imagine Joshua Ang's Thank you Speech:

"I like to thank Star Cruise. Without them, I will not be able to practise my gambling in Singapore. I also like to thank all my friends and relatives who has helped me to nurture my gambling skills from all those nightly gambling sessions during chinese new year. Finally, I want to thank Singapore Government for opening up and allow Casinos in Singapore. I feel that my skills is finally being recognised by the Singapore Government. Thank you all. I shall quit my day job now and go into gambling full-time."

Friday, November 17, 2006

there's something about ..... pop quiz

I bet you didn't know this before yesterday......

Pop Quiz 1: Do you know if there is an acting president for Singapore if President Nathan is not in Town?

Pop Quiz 2: If there is, who is our acting President?

Pop Quiz 3: In what circumstances would we know if there is an Acting President for Singapore?



Pop Quiz 1: Based on my preliminary search on the net, including I derived that there is no such thing as acting president, or rather this was not mentioned at all in the official website.

Pop Quiz 2: The following is release from the government see link

Anyway, I reproduce it below:

"The 43rd President of the United States, President George W. Bush will make an official visit to Singapore from 16 to 17 November 2006. Singapore is his first stop in the region en route to Vietnam for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders Meeting. This will be President Bush's second official visit to Singapore. His previous visit was in 2003.

President Bush will be accompanied by the First Lady, Mrs Laura Bush and key U.S. government officials. During his visit, President Bush will call on Acting President J Y Pillay and meet with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and other Cabinet Ministers. President Bush will also be delivering a major speech in Singapore.
. . . . .
12 NOVEMBER 2006 "

Pop Quiz 3: Only when US President comes to Singapore and our real president not around, would we know there is an Acting President.


Not too sure if it is in our constitution to have an acting president. I'm sure it is. But if our president is so-called elected, shouldn't we also elect the acting-president?

Unless this guy Mr Pillay is appointed last minute.

Singapore Government: Alamak... President Nathan on leave leh... how... George Bush coming and he is president of US... we must also come out with a President of Singapore leh...

Istana office: Aiyeah... why didn't say earlier.... so last minute... we cannot reschedule President Nathan's trip leh.

Singapore Government: Ok lah.. why don't we find a double. USA also got alot of President-lookalike, I'm sure if we can find a double, Bush will not notice lah.

Istana: We have... but he charges $500 per hour leh. Very expensive. Like that lah... we get a acting President. His charges is very low... $100 per hour. Can?

Singapore Government: Acting one? TCS got indian actors meh?

Istana office: Got...... Gurmit Singh. Can? He as popular as President Nathan.

Singapore Government: never mind... I find myself.

there's something about ..... worst-designed items

Came across this article today.

They are asking us to vote for Singapore's WORST-DESIGNED ITEMS, and if chosen, the sponsorers will re-designed them. You can go to this link to check it out.

I wonder....

Why only 10 items? You mean Singapore so stylo-milo that we only have 10 badly designed items meh?

At the bottom of my mind, I could think of few things. Surely if I crack my brain further (not literally), I could come up with more than 10.

Already in my blog, I have often complaint about certain things. For example, plaza Sing Car park. See link

How about Bomb Shelters?

How about general HDB designs san some found in Sengkang and Punggol where they looked like Condo.

How about Esplanade? Would they redesigned them?

And only in Singapore, people hang their clothes out of the windows with bamboo poles. It's fabulous. Your clothes will kenna more wet if some idiot above you allow their wet clothings to be really wet and the water dripping down to your clothings. Also, if you want to see what underwear your neighbour is wearing, you just peak out of the window. And when you try to walk below the block, you always feel damn SUAY because all these underwear is above you.

Of course, this website is looking at more things other than housing. Maybe your bus-stop needs redesigning. Instead of allowing you to flag down buses because SBS says you-never-flag-and- you- can't-blame-them-for-not-stopping, how about we pressed certain buttons at the bustops to indicate to the coming bus drivers that we want to board certain buses. That way, they cannot blame us for indicating.

Maybe the IU reader in the car needs redesigning. exposing cashcard is just fabulous.

Maybe this blog need redesigning. Not I say one... people in the net say one.

Maybe Merlion need redesigning. I'm sick of overseas clients asking me what is the significance of Merlion. Of course, I know now. But why can't they design something straight forward like a Lion or a Fish.

How about redesigning overhead bridges along major roads and expressway. There is a fundamental flaws in these bridges. It allows Men in Uniforms to stand there for the full day with a speed camera in hand. When drivers see that, we tend to brake immediately to slow down and it might be dangerous. Bridge should therefore design to take only 1 human being at any one time. So no one can hog the bridge for too long.

Many more.

So, do you part as Singaporean. Take part in this excercise. So we can be more Stylo-Milo.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

there's something about ..... matchmaking

Last Sunday or rather on 2 consecutive Sundays, one particular article on Sunday Times caught my eye.

It's about this Real Estate Queen Ivy Lee in search of love in local matchmaking firm Lunch Actually. See the first article here. link

In brief, this 42 years old millionaire could not get a date because she is too old. She tried to ask her ex-husband out on a date on 2 occasions but was snubbed and was told to "get a life, move on".

After the article came out, Ivy Lee got 40 proposals from all walks of live.

ST managed to interview some of them. However, I'm not able to get a link to that article.

I, however, managed to interview some of them.

LIVE and EXCLUSIVE, only in this BLOG.

Interview with Ah Tan, a plumber in his 40s. Twice Divorced. Currently staying in 4 room flat in Ang Mo Kio.

Moomooman: Ah Tan, why did you decide to write to Miss Lee about a date?

At Tan: You dunno meh... she millio... I mean She look Chio leh.

Moomooman: But you look like a plumber... don't you think..

At Tan: But I am the CEO of a plumbing company ok. So.. we are veli matching matching.

moomooman: I see, how many staffs in your firm?

At Tan: 1 CEO lah.

Interview with Peter Lee, a real estate agent. 30 years old. not married. Currently living with parents in a 5 room flat in Geylang.

Moomooman: Peter, why did you decide to write to Miss Lee?

Peter: I find her very elegant and beautiful.

Moomooman: but surely you are aware that she is 42 and you are only 30. On top of that, she has 2 kids?

Peter: Luv got no barrier one. Most importantly is I love her mone... I love her more. Faye Wong also date younger guy what. Demi Moore also marry that Kuku guy what. Also, we in the same industry... we have alot in common

Moomooman: How long have you been in this industry?

Peter: 1 month. But I very hardworking one. I felt like I in this line for 10 years already.

Interview with Uncle Lim, a retiree in his late 50s. Currently a Widower. At time of interview, he is hanging out at Chinatown.

Moomooman: Wah uncle, you very can. Read straits Times. What are you doing at Chinatown.

Uncle Lim: I very sociable. Like to come here and make friends with other females.

Moomooman: Oh... you mean those china women who are here on 2 weeks visas and come to chinatown to buy some souvenirs?

Uncle Lim: Yeah yeah. Those kind.

moomooman: Why did you think you fit the bill to date Miss Lee?

Uncle Lim: She say she want man in the fifties mah. I fifties aleady. Somemore hers bigger than these china women here.

Moomooman: err... you mean.. her build is bigger. But can you communicate with her, I could see a big gap in terms of everything.

Uncle Lim: We communicate with love one. Can't you see she veli desperate. This kind I like. They not too fussy. I can still do it.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

there's something about ..... eminem's idol

Way before EMINEM came into existence....

This guy was consider cool. I half suspect this chap was EMINEM's inspiration.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

there's something about ..... video not ezy

I'm almost done with Youtube. After days and days of scanning thru the website, I'm almost done with my searches.

And I decided to go back to proper videos, or watching DVDS.

I have been renting from VideoEzy for many years. I would think I frequent them on average about 3 times a month.

About 2 months ago, they started with a ladies night for rentals on Tuesday where you get a 1+1, or 1 more free title for every 1 you rented. ALL I have to do is to either change my sex to become a chabor or bring my wife along.

So for a good 2 months, the cheepo in us, see us making a driving trip about 5 to 10 mins away every Tuesday night to Video Ezy so that we can rent 2 DVDs at $5, or $2.50 a movie.

Last night is no different. After dinner, I reminded my wife it's Tuesday and she just knew what we need to do. With our kid in toll, we decided to take a drive down to Video Ezy.

After spending about 10 mins selecting 2 titles, we promptly go to the cashier to make our payment of $5.

To our astonishment..... yes... it's astonishment.... something as big as this is consider astonishment in my family.......

... Videoezy has changed the mechanics of the Promotion to counter cheepo like us for abusing their profit margin!!!

You no longer get 1+1... you get the +1.... BUT you only get that +1 after you RENT a minimum value of $13, or 2 DVDs+1 VCD or 3 DVDs at $15 BEFORE you get your FREE TITLE!!!!

And not only that... the 3 DVDs you borrowed has a 7 days returning period while the free title has a 5 days returning period. MEANING TO SAY.... if you want to enjoy this promotion, you have to WATCH 4 DVDs in 7 days and make 2 trips to return all your DVDs.


So I was stuck.... Should I...

1.) Spit at the DVDs and walk away in disgust.....
2.) Borrow 3 DVDs and get another 1 free........ and spit at the cashier
3.) just borrow the 2 DVDs which I have already selected and pay them $10... and spit at the cashier
4.) Just borrow 1 DVD and maintain my budget of $5 per trip.

I decided to be decent.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

there's something about ..... rockers

Interestingly 5 years apart makes lots of difference to MTV styles.

Those rocker's MTV are much "cooler" than the Pop culture. And looking at this 80s rockers' MTV, you wouldn't cringe at them.

Beware... if you are too religious, the following MTVs could be offending.

there's something about ..... spoof

Andre Agassi By ben Stiller

A few Good men by Ben Stiller

Lord of the Ring by Jack Black, as recommended by Jeff

Spiderman by Jack Black

panic Room by Jack Black

Sunday, October 29, 2006

there's something about ..... breath and missing

Still on music.

Just realised my blog feels a tad too old with the average age of music around 25 years old. I think it's time to average down and also shows the hip-hop nature of me. Afterall, if MP in their 30s can do hip hop, I also can.

Many years ago I believe around 1998, I came across a performance in the Grammy Award which blown me away. It was the best performance I've ever seen.

Unfortunately I couldn't find that video in Youtube but found another similar one. Not as good as the one in Grammy but nevertheless still blown me away.

The respective MTVs ....

Friday, October 27, 2006

there's something about ..... name

Great!! Naming your kid is really important. Because my parents didn't think much when they name me and my name may sometimes become a joke.

you see... my name has a "kok" in it.

And since I identify myself as "kok ____", my clients expecially the caucasians will call me Mr ____ since to them, that is the last name or the surname.

Today, one of my client decided to be friendly and called me by my name.

She ended the conversation "Bye.... Cock"

Thursday, October 26, 2006

there's something about ..... faceless music

These couple of days damn free and spend quite alot of time in Youtube looking at videos. So many things to see... it's amazing.

Since the Modern Talking video I posted 2 days back, I've been searching for old MTVs. There were so many songs that you love, many timelesss classics but you never able to know how the singers looks like.

Most of these are one-hit wonders. You like their song so much and you think to some extent these songs change your life but never think much about how they look like.

Until now.

And I must say they look funny.

F.R David

John Waite

there's something about ..... wonderful

I'm not so much into live music because I always think the artiste couldn't reproduce that kind of quality they do in a studio.

I was wrong.

there's something about ..... MI:II

Mission Impossible II, interview with Tom Crooze.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

there's something about ..... dancing to the music

Came across this video in youtube which I thought was funny...

And then i ask myself and I know everyone out there will share my sentiments... there is this song that I'm sure everyone love it but will deny loving it.

So I'm dedicating this MTV to all my friends out there... I know Jeff love this, I know Leon love this.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

there's something about ..... Plaza Sing

Now that Vivo City is finally opened... I'm sure that will be the go-to place for the many years to come. In fact, I'm confident that vivo city may even be more popular than Suntec City.

However, Plaza Singapura has always have a place in my heart. Just a place... nothing else. I remember hanging out there as a kid during the Yaohan days. There was this big Times bookshop on the fifth floor and there was Yamaha at the 6th or 7th floor where I learn my music. YES.... I learned music... though not much success.

However, in recent years... going to Plaza Singapura is becoming a big Pain.

You see.... with such a wonderful history behind and an old Car Park (which they kept during the retrofitting) vehicular system that makes so much sense during the early days that every developer should learn from it.... they decided to be "smart" and totally screw up the whole system. I bet it must be some scholar who did this to the car park. I mean... only scholar do such things. They do things unlogically.

Offence intended.

Let me explain the OLD car park concept.

1.) You enter from Handy Road and goes up to the car park thru the entrance on the left. This makes a good natural flow from the traffic coming from Handy Road.

2.) upon entering the car park, you will be entering the Car Park from the lowest floor up.

3.) As the car park is designed such that you will be able to see ALL the lots available as you drive, every car moves in the same direction. It's almost a case of first come, first serve basis. This is unlike those big car park found in Suntec City where every car can go in different directions to find car park lots. Over here, it won't happen.

4.) At which ever level you have park your car, you exit it at the level thru the ramp. Every level has a ramp for exit. This ensure immediate exit. So if you park at level 3, you exit at level 3.

5.) you exit out to handy road, again with the flow of traffic.

6.) just perfect!


1.) You enter the car park via the ramp up from Handy Road. The entrance is on the right side of the building while you enter from handy road which is on the left side of the road. Almost often, there is a attendant or a security guard manning the criss-cross to help with the traffic.

2.) They come up with a a system whom they thought it's damn bloody smart. They have indicators at point of entry which levels have available lots.

3.) Assuming you enter into level 3 out of 7 storey, with an indicator showing there are 3 lots. What the indicator didn't show you is that there are already 3 other cars about to enter those lots and when you drive into level 3, you realised there aren't any more lots available. You drive down to level 2 and there aren't any lots, you drive down to level one and you realised you are exiting. You couldn't drive up because the only way up is thru the RAMPS and there is no access to the ramps when you realised you are at level 1, so you have to exit.

4.) So to play really safe, you drive the ramps up the level 7 where the electronic indicators suggested lots of lots available. So you drive round the ramps 7 times to get dizzy.

5.) naturally when you find a lot at level 7, you park there. You are afraid of situations no.3 as explained before.

6.) when you exit, you drive all the way level by level in the CAR PARK itself down to level one. It's not immediate, because in this narrow carpark, when 1 car try to park their car say, at level 5, all the exiting cars have to wait until this car parked before they can drive down. If you park level 7, you have to drive down 7 levels. Cars in the car park either are looking for a lot or they are exiting, thus often you have bottlenecks. While in the old system, the ramps are for exiting and the carpark is for finding a lot. In this new system, the ramps is just a transit and serve no purpose.

7.) you exit into Handy Road and you have to give way for cars trying to cross the junction entering the car park.

8.) It's a nightmare.

But WHY? Why did someone do something so silly? What is their rationale for doing what they did?

They wanted customers to find a lot faster knowing which level has lots but overall, there aren't much of a time savings.

Anyway, Vivo City is operated by Mapletree which is another government link company. Let's see how efficient they are in designing their car parks.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

there's something about ..... F$%@ wealthy

This is how instant billionair react after becoming one. To be exact US$1.6billion.

Look at their smile. They can't hide their excitment of purchasing the ferrari.

Steve said "..... we wouldn't come close to where we are if not for the community" Yeah right.... "COME CLOSE"??!??!

Nabeh... I just had a hand in making someone filthy rich!

The people behind blogspot must be fuming mad. I would say that without blogging, youtube will not be as big as now.

Monday, October 09, 2006

there's something about ..... dry tank

Q1: Have you ever wonder what is the petrol allowance in your petrol tank of your car when your "low petrol" indicator light up till the time the petrol runs dry?


Q2: Have you ever wonder what happen to your car when your petrol tank runs dry?


Q3: Have you ever wonder what you would do when your petrol tank runs dry?


These are the things your parents never teach you nor your teachers in school because no one EVER let their petrol tank runs dry...... NO ONE......

.... except ME!

Nabeh! Of course, I have myself to blame. Stubborness and stupidity could sometimes achieve enlightenment in questions like above.

I just realised how important it is to have friends staying in different part of the island IN CASE EVER something like this happen and you can call them..... or call their brother to be precise.

I was along TPE when I knew I would be in trouble when I felt jerkiness in the car and immediately I put on the hazard light and keep left..... and pray......

...pray that you could somehow manage your way to the nearest exit along the expressway and find the nearest petrol kiosk.

... of course... praying doesn't work.... otherwise no one will be stupid and stubborn.

But I did manage to exit at Yio Chu Kang and my car slow down along the slip road and stalled for good. (ANSWER TO QUESTION 2)

I try to recall which of my buddies stayed near where I was and promptly this buddy that stays in SENGKANG BUT GOES TO HOUGANG everynight comes to my mind.

And so I called him... at time of blogging about 1am, he has yet to return call. So I did the next best thing and called his brother, who came to my rescue. Apparently some petrol kiosk sells cans of petrol for morons like me at $10 per can of 5 litres. (ANSWER TO QUESTION 3)

But while they sell you cans of petrol, they didn't provide you with a funnel. You ended wasting about half the petrol trying to pour it into the car's tank.

However, you don't have to pour all 5 litres into the tank. Just sufficient enuff for you to last till the nearest petrol kiosk for a full top up.

I did some estimation. Comparing the topping up of the tank this time plus whatever limited petrol I already put inside and my other top ups when the "low-petrol" indicator came on, the margin is about 6 litres.

Depending on the make of your car, you could multiply that with the fuel efficiency and you can roughly establish the distance before the tank drys up. In my case, it was 8km/litre, thus 42 km. (ANSWER TO QUESTION 1)

What is the moral of the story? Have more buddies staying in different part of the islands and make sure you also know their siblings well.

p/s: I have set the time and date of this blog to time of the incident.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

there's something about ..... botak

If you haven't come across Botak Jones, the western-food-located-in-HDB-estates-serving-expensive-western-fares, then... you should pay them a visit either at Bedok or Ang Mo kio, and I heard in Clementi soon.

They serve up quite a storm really. It's operated by this Botak Ang Moh probably called Jones and they served Jack's Place standard steak and others at JAck's place prices in a HDB coffeeshop with food prepared by part-timers and served by part-timers. Usually such coffeeshops are so deserted that they dominated the whole coffeeshops probably paying low rent but reaping huge profits.

Do I sound very critical about this?

You see... I was a fan before. Located near where I stay.. I would visit them like once a week. Their Fish and Chips is really quite good. And they come in 2 sizes. You can upsize to a bigger portion if you are damn bloody hungry.

And so I day... I was really bloody hungry and decided to ask for the bigger size. However, when my order arrived, the tartar sauce given is not any more than the smaller order.

And so I promptly ask the "waitress" (they have like 10 employees on a Saturday night) if I can have more Tartar sauce.

The waitress replied: Yes. But that will be 50 cents more.


HELLO... ?!?!?!?!? You charge $9 for a fish and chips and you want to ask for 50 cents more for tartar sauce?!?!?!?!?!?

The rent at the coffee shop is probably only about $1500 a month. Plus all these part-timers that look like students working for you and yet you decided that your profit margin is too narrow to give me more TARTAR SAUCE!??!?!?!?!?!?

I have since boycotted them. Now I go to another market about 5 mins walk away from Botak Jone to have my fish and chips at $4, plus free-flow of Tartar Sauce.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

there's something about ..... idol

Singapore Idol ended predictably.

I didn't follow the show that much until the last couple of weeks. One of my female friends is crazy about the show. She watches religiously and voted for her favourite singers.

Her favourite started with Jonathon Leong and later became Hady. During the final, she told me she voted about 10 times for Hady. So you could imagine her joy when Hady won.

She shouldn't have bothered.

It's no coincidence that another Malay won Singapore Idol. In fact, I have told my friend as way back during the final 4 or 5 that Hady would be in the Final 2 and will win the Idol. And my belief is not about his singing ability. Hady has a clean and boy next door image which make him more suited to be an "idol". But the end result wouldn't be any different if Hady has that rocker image as well.

I'm not racist. This is not a racist entry.

Hady won despite a better performance from Jonathon. Why?

With a viewership of around 300,000 each week, it's not a very big figure for the voting to be well spreaded across all social borders.

There are approximately 450,000 malays in Singapore and approximate 2.5m Chinese in Singapore. This figure can be found in

Most malay families watches Chanel 5 as their main channel. While most chinese families tuned in to Channel 8 as their main channel. Therefore, it's not difficult to derive that there are more Malay families tuning into Singapore Idol than Chinese.

But so what if there are more Malays watching than chinese? Isn't everyone Singaporean? What talk about races?

Malay community is one of the most united communities in Singapore. The chinese? We always treat cautiously when we meet another stranger, wondering if the chinese is out to take advantage of you. The Malays treat another Malay like one big family.

My point?

Malay will definitely vote for Hady. They might also vote for Jonathon. But they ensure they have 1 more vote for Hady. The Chinese have no such loyalty. They vote who they believe should win. Chinese who voted for Hady will not vote for Jonathon and vice versa.

There lies such cultural differences. Singapore Idol will not work in Singapore. Period.

My friend? She is a chinese.

Monday, September 25, 2006

there's something about ..... car park II

Earlier, I mentioned about the different car park systems in Singapore and how if you do not have sufficient funds in your cash card, you will have all cars piling behind you......

Well... that happened to me yesterday at TANGS.

I was there for about 1 hour and 20 mins and promptly decided that I have sufficient funds in my cashcard.

You see... everyone's optimism is different. Having $3.70 in my cashcard is enough for me to feel optimistic that THAT IS sufficient.

I mean... isn't sufficiency a relative judgement?

But one would ask... on a Sunday at TANGS, surely you would have reasons to feel otherwise?

I dunno. I mean... Suntec City would only be $2.10. Should I then have 20 feelings for 20 different malls? Even if it's $2 an hour, 1 hour 20 mins would at most be $3, well within my $3.70.

And so I started my journey towards enlightenment.

I knew I'm in trouble when I was stuck at the ramp down with all the cars in the queue before me. Someone else at the exit must be another optimist. You see... the way the car park is designed, when you are in the ramp, there is no other way out except the exit. Even if you decide to stop by the side, find the ATM to top up the cash card which is probably somewhere inside the mall, you can't do it. In other words, you are really stuck.

When I finally come within sight of the exit gantry, I was relieved to see a booth nearby where an attendant is inside probably reading newspaper, chatting on the phone, play Sudoko...

The fee.... $4.50!!!!!!

I have no choice but to go to the attendant to top up my card... but for reasons I can't explain, the machine wasn't working. It's like someone up there is trying to teach me a lesson. I probably spent about 5 mins there before the machine could work. By then, I have already seen a long line of cars queueing up.

Funny thing is... nobody was impatient enough to even make a light horn for the wait. This shows that such problem is getting more common.

Which brings me to the next question... why spend more money in new technology where it doesn't seems to solve any problems at all?

I mean.. you still need to have an attendant nearby in a booth when you are adopting a ERP styled car park system? Might as well stick to the old system.

there's something about ..... og

OG has the best business concept in Singapore. No other famous departmental store can come close. They appeal to a niche in Singapore and made their target-market very loyal to them via their loyalty programms that is the BEST IN THE WORLD.

My mum is a fan of OG. Like all Or-Bah-San in Singapore, OG is THE store. Not Metro, not Isetan, not Takashimaya. OG is to them, what sexy-photobook-in-kinokunia is to me.

And from a fan's perspective, the most desirable thing to own is the OG's member's card.

My first thought was that the card gives a discount on every purchase made in OG. However I soon realised the card merely gives you loyalty points for you to redeem gifts. And to entitle to a member's card, you have to spend $70 in one single receipt during their yearly membersip-renewal-excercise.

This already beat those loyalty programs from Credit Card companies and Petrol companies. While these companies give out free cards and hope you stay loyal, OG make the customer spend $70 and still have the customer's loyalty. No hope is necessary, it's a surebet.

And so my mum frantically needed to buy something so as not to miss out on the CARD of the Century. In order to fulfill my fillial-piety,I have decided to help by buying a child car-seat for my kid and thus qualify immediately.

And so we got the new card but we have to redeem all available points in our old card or those points will be forfeited.

Of course, redeeming gifts is the whole reason for getting the card in the first place. And off we go to the redeeming counter.

I went with high anticipation for a wide selection of good products. I mean... I was never dissappointed with those redemption programs from Petrol companies and Credit Card companies and surely this can't be that bad considering we had paid to be a member and have consistently purchased something throughout the year so that we can redeem wonderful gifts.

The first thing I realised when I enter the redemption area is that you get 1 point for every $10 spent. That is already double that of any credit card. And my mum has about 37 points to redeem. That raised my expectation of a wonderful selection.


This is not Loyalty-program!!! It's a ROBBERY-PROGRAM!!!!

It's not FREE GIFT we are redeeming. It's to redeem an opportunity to BUY some products AT what looks like their original selling price or at best at 10% discount!!!!

150 points + $39 for a cooker?!?!?!??!?!

Pardon me... but why do I need to spend $1500 throughout the year so that I can buy a cooker at $39?!?!?!!??!?!?!? I might as well go buy the cooker at $39!!!!!

And what's with the shopping bag that looks like what you can buy at Basar Malam at $1!!! And you have to pay $2 for it!??!?!?!?!?!?!?!


37 points entitled us to "redeem" three of those bags and not only that, pay $6 for it. And not only that...... TO QUEUE UP FOR 20 MINS FOR IT!!!! NABEH!!!!!!!!

I was so fuming mad that I told my mum that I'll give her $50 to give up the points and we leave immediately.

But you know... OR-BAH-SAN's loyalty is strong. To them, this act of "redeeming" is what they look forward to every year.

I look in front of my queue and I see these Or Bah San's face.... all breaming with joy.


Wednesday, September 20, 2006

there's something about ..... car park

By and large, there are about 6 car park system currently used in Singapore.

Starting from the old generation to the latest generation:

1. Coupon

Method: You purchase parking coupons and remove the tabs or chads if you are american, corresponding the the date and time at the point of parking and hope parking warden stop patrolling the area.

Problem: You have to ensure you have enough coupons in the car as these are only available for sales AWAY from these carparks.

Age of this system: Probably 25 to 30 years.

Where: Almost all HDB car parks and half of those surface carparks you find anywhere else.

2. Ticket; pay to human

Method: You pick up a ticket at the car park entrance from a validating machine. And you pay at the exit to the attendant stationing in a booth.

Problem: You have to ensure you have enough cash with you, otherwise, it can be a disaster if there are cars piling up behind you when you are exiting and you need to go draw cash from a ATM.

Age of this system: Probably 20 to 25 years.

Where can you find one: Shaw Centre at Beach Road

3. Ticket; pay t0 machine

Method: You pick up a ticket at the entrance. And before you leave the area or a mall, you pay at a ticket machine before picking up your car. You would have about 10 mins from time of payment to exit the mall.

Problem: Rather fuss free. You can often find a ATM around the corner if the car park charges is more than what you find.

Age of this system: Probably about 10 to 15 years.

Where can you find one: Liang Court

4. Cash Card system 1. Must wind down window one.

Method: You use the same cash card in the IU, instead of receiving a ticket from the gantry at the car park entrance, you insert your cash card into the machine to validate the time of entrance. At the exit, you again insert the same cash card into the machine determine the time spent and the amount. The amount is thus deducted from the cash card directly.

Problem: You have to ensure you have sufficient funds in the Cashcard. Otherwise, it can be a disaster if the cars are piling up behind you when you are exiting and you need to go top up the cash card somewhere.

Age of the system: About 5 years. And facing Obsolesence.

Where can you find one: Some car parks within a complex that may have a hotel component. Eg. Scotts Shopping Centre

5. Cashcard System 2. ERP style.

Method: It uses the cash card already in your car's IU. You do not have to do anything except to drive slowly pass the censor which will detect your cashcard and validate the time of entrance. When you exit, it will also automatically deduct from your cash card without having you to do anything.

Problem: You have to ensure you have sufficient funds in your cash card. Otherwise it can be a disaster if cars are piling up behind you when you are exiting and you need to go top up the cash card elsewhere.

Age of the system: Probably 3-4 years ago.

Where can you find this: Almost in every complex in Singapore... except the next one.

6. Cash card system 3. Also must wind down window one....

Method: Same as method 4.

Problem: You have to ensure there is sufficient fund in your cash card. Otherwise it can be a disaster if cars are piling up behind you WHEN YOU ARE ENTERING and you need to go top up the cash card at the Main Lobby of the OFFICE COMPLEX, after which YOU WILL TRY TO ENTER THE CAR PARK AGAIN!!! CASH CARD NO VALUE... SORRY YOU ARE TOO POOR TO ENTER OUR CAR PARK!!

Age of the system: Probably 3 years.


Monday, September 18, 2006

there's something about ..... chee soon juan

I'm pro-pap. It's uncool to pledge your allegiance to a party that trys to be cool but I don't subscribe to coolness to start off. I subscribe to my personal beliefs.

Came across this link from another blogger. It's about Chee Soon Juan's flyers being "stolen" by the police. This makes an interesting read, but you have to know that this article comes from CSJ directly and it's totally biased and probably as flawed as his character. see link

Over the years, I have grown to admire CSJ. This guy got "balls", a term now approved by the government as "parliamentary" as said by George Yeo

Unlike other defacted politician like Tang Liang Hong or Francis Seow and others, he choose to remain in Singapore to fight his beliefs. Though the manner in which he fight his beliefs could have been more credible. For example, go on hunger strike without glucose drip.

As a bankrupt, he has nothing to worry about lawsuits against him. Is there any difference if you owe $300k or $1m? And he is smart enough not to be caught for for any jailable offence. So he continue to provide us with political entertainment.

But I don't pity him. As a family man, your first priority is to look after your family which in his instance, he has 3 kids. The next priority would then be your beliefs.

And to take care of your family, you have to ensure there is enough bacon in the house to take care of basic needs like food, education and other well-being.

But yet he go about his political career with such care-free attitude, you wonder if he cares about his family at all.

Unless of course, he family is already been taken care of.

I belief Chee Soon Juan has financial backing from overseas source. And these money may not go directly to him or he may have to pass it on to the OA. And of course, this remains my speculation. Just pure speculation.

Nevertheless, he makes Singapore interesting. Kudos to CSJ. But I will never vote for you.

Friday, September 15, 2006

there's something about ..... news

I walk past a newspaper vendor yesterday while waiting for someone and came across the headline in the NEW PAPER. It says "Mistress give one-eye dragon a baby"
story link

Wah biang. SINGAPORE DAMN Drama-less. Our lives is so damn bored that a murderer/loan shark's offspring is reported in our daily newspaper.

Imagine a IMF delegate bought the newspaper and ask the Singaporean's representative....

IMF delegate: May I know what is this one-eye dragon? Is it a endangered species in the zoo and you guys managed to ensure this species do not extinct?

Singapore rep: err.... yes.. it's endangered before.... and this species will soon be extinct.

IMF delegate: Oh... then you guys did a wonderful job to ensure there is now a off-spring. Is this dragon like a Cameleon?

Singapore rep: er... no.. it's a shark.

IMF delegate: wow.... a shark that looks like a dragon... I just knew Singapore is exotic... can I go to the zoo to see it...

Singapore rep: err.....

Just wonderful.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

there's something about ..... banquet

I am beginning to feel that my blog has a whining + complain theme to it.

I went to Ang Mo Kio Central 2 days ago for dinner. My family decided on comfort and head towards BANQUET (the former A&W location, wow... how I missed those A&W days) where they have converted the coffeeshop to be a foodcourt with air-conditioning.

I'm not a fan of Banquet. I don't see how a chinese local fare prepared the halal way is appealing as compared to other foodcourts. I have tasted some of the food and while it's a close resemblance to non-halal preparation, you felt it's still different in a lesser way.

While other foodcourts are started by long time coffeeshop operators with lots of experience behind the foodcourt/coffeeshop business, BANQUET is started by a Contractor who failed in the construction industry and jumped on the banwagon of a highly lucrative industry. In order to have a go at a lease, he promised the landlord that his foodcourt is different and it will be 100% halal. The rest is history.

While the Malays could finally taste Wantan Mee and Bak Chor Mee without Bak Chor, there seems to have no motivation for a chinese to patronise them while down the street, you will have a Bak Chor Mee with Bak Chor. I mean.. we are talking about Ang Mo Kio Central where you have gazillions of coffeeshops at every 10 steps you make.

So I decided to go "western" and ordered a BBQ spring chicken. On the menu, the picture indicated a accompanying side-dishes of fries and salad at $7.

When the meal arrived, there was none of the side-dishes but just the chicken.

moomooman : Sorry... where is the fries?

Stall helper: No fries.

Moomooman: huh? Your picture here got fries!

Stall helper: No fries.

Moomooman: Then you should change your picture.

stall helper: (no response... just look straight at me)

I was pissed!! Not so much about the missing fries but their attitude towards the whole incident. I decided to teach them a lesson. Their chilli sauce was free-serving in a bottle. So pour out almost half the bottle of chilli right in front of them and walk away.

Of course I did not finish the chilli sauce.

And of course I will not patronise another Banquet outlet again.

Monday, September 11, 2006

there's something about ..... speeches

Coincidentally, Sunday Times feature an article on local motivational speakers and their rates.

It was mentioned that Nanz Chong has 8 to 10 engagements per month now, ranging from $2k to $10k per engagement.

Assuming the lowest figure of 2k x 8 engagement, we are talking about $16k income a month minimum. At the maximum, we are talking about 100k a month.

If I knew failing is so lucrative, then I rather fail. No need to worries about inventory, staff costs, shop space, balance sheet, etc etc.

The papers quoted that "she decided to go into speaking to help others with her message".

She describes her style as "High-energy, impactful and humorous"

It was also quoted that her story of her business' demise has often moved audience members to tears, she says "sometimes we need to hand out tissue boxes"

Wah... very noble hor.... since you want to help others with your message, can dun pay or not?

Actually there is nothing sad about her failings and the subsequent bankruptzy. In Singapore Law, even if you are a Bankrupt, your CPF remains intact and the creditors can't touch the money in your CPF.

All those CPF that she has over the years would be high enuff to ensure she has a comfortable retirement after 55. On top of that, her husband would be able to find a good job to support the family.

So she is not exactly in dire straits.

If she is, do you think she would be pregnant during the down period?

Imagine... your business is failing.... you are facing bankruptsy.... but hey... let's get in the mood to procreate.

In the same article, it was also mentioned that almost the whole Mount Everest expedition team is into motivational speaking.

Robert Goh says "If we can motivate people to climb mountains when they are not paid to, then surely we can motivate people who are paid to do what they do."

Well said. Except that Khoo Swee Chiow is said to have applied for Grant from Government plus he is sponsored by Hitachi and many others.

The papers mention that Mr Robert Goh recently quit his job as an aeronautical research scientist at DSO national laboratories to pursue motivational speaking and coahing full-time. His fee is about $5000 per hour.

Money Talks!

Thursday, September 07, 2006

there's something about ..... books

Yesterday I had about 1.5 hours of waiting time to kill at bugis and I decided to visit the kinokunia (pardon my spelling, it could be worse).

I like to visit the business section. Of course, I would also like to visit those sexy photobook of japanese models, but unfortunately they are not meant for browsing. Damn it!

Anyway, I managed to read a few pages of Nanz Chong's 1 business 99 lessons. I've also flip thru Adam Khoo's book about becoming a millionaire. Plus also other related "sales" book on how to "sell" effectively. Not to mention other Rich Dad Poor Dad's series.

And I realised something.

They write books not with the intention to guide as their primary motivation, they write books to profit from it.

I mean.... why read about Nanz Chong's failure? Shouldn't we be reading someone else's success instead, like what they did correctly and not what they did wrongly. Nobody has a more celebrated bankcruptzy than Nanz Chong. She is now making more money giving motivational speeches and selling books. Why am I such a critique on her? Because... this book sucks!! In order to tie in with her 1.99 concept, she has to ensure there are 99 lessons to write. And some of these lessons are lame.

The same can be mentioned about the other "sales" book. If you are a fantastic sales man, you probably got no time to write a book. You will spend those time making more money in your trade. Of course, if your trade is about writing a book then... your expertise is not so much about "marketing" but about "writing".

And not to mention Rich Dad Poor Dad, which I was never a fan of. The original book is used by all MLM sellers, and you know if MLM uses them... the book can't be any good.

Monday, September 04, 2006

there's something about ..... stingray

Just heard the news that the world-renowned Australian "crocodile hunter" and television environmentalist Steve Irwin has been killed by a stingray on the famed Great Barrier Reef.

I thought this was a news big enough to call coolcat about this tragic accident.

Coolcat: Stingray can sting people one meh?

Now we know why the name. And not only that, it's deadly.

While I'm sad that someone so famous died while on the job on educating the world, I can't help thinking that he got killed by a famous hawker dish in Singapore.

A hawker dish we so take it for granted. Often complaining that the meat not enuff, chilli not out enuff and hawker try to bluff us on the price etc etc. But we never think about the danger that fishermen go thru in order to make that dollar.

I think it's a matter of time the price of stingray goes up. They now have a case to highlight the dangers involved.

Monday, August 28, 2006

there's something about ..... zoe tay vs SPH part II

Last year, I did a blog on Zoe Tay vs SPH Part I , and I thought it's a good time to do Part II now.

The case surrounded an article published by SPH with regards to Zoe Tay's endorsement deals which implied that she has lied to the general public about her sexual ignorance. As usual, SPH is represented by Senior Counsel Davinder Singh. Zoe Tay's representing Counsel is not named as it wasn't necessary.

Davinder Singh (DS): Oh.. it's you again. Why you like to sue SPH every year?

Zoe Tay (ZT): because SPH like to write untrue articles about me.

DS: We will know whether they are true or not soon. What is your understanding of the product you are endorsing now.

ZT: It's a supplement for beautiful skin. I have been using it for a long time.

DS: So you just pop it into your mouth and you will have beautiful skin?

ZT: something like that.

DS: Do you chew?

ZT: No. I swallow.

DS: Other than this supplement, what else you swallow in your daily life?

ZT: Water. Sometime Bak Chor Mee and Mee Siam. But I always say Mai Harm.

DS: Have you swallow any bodily fluid from your husband before?

ZT: Honour, I object that question, it's invading my privacy.

Honour: You have to answer the question. It's a key question to the case. Please answer it.

ZT: Yes. When he kiss me after drinking lots of water, sometimes I swallow his saliva.

DS: So, you do swallow after a sexy act with your husband.

ZT: I mean...

DS: Just answer yes or no.

ZT: If you mean...

DS: Just answer yes or no.

ZT: Yes.

DS: So you agree that "swallow" has a sexual innuendo in the advertisement.

ZT: It wasn't to me. I don't see anything wrong with it.

DS: The question is not whether you see anything wrong with it. The question is whether other people who saw the advertisment will think there is a sexual innuendo in the advertisment. Do you think your advertisment will led people to think that way?

ZT: If they have a filthy mind, I'm sure they would.

DS: So you agreed that the advertisment did have that kind of sexual innuendo.

ZT: No. I don't agree.

DS: If you don't agree, then why is there a need to emphasise on "swallow", is there any other way you can consume a tablet?

ZT: Ok lah... you win lah... I don't want to discuss this anymore.

DS: One last question.... which stall got sell Mee Siam with Harm?

Thursday, August 24, 2006

there's something about ..... rivalry

Like the saying goes.... if you can't beat them, Join Them.

Apple Computer announced it would pay Singapore-listed Creative Technology 100 million dollars to settle a dispute over patented technology used in iPod and Nano MP3 players.

The deal ended a budding legal battle that began earlier this month after Creative was awarded what it referred to as a "Zen patent" on technology used to select and sort songs in its Zen MP3 player.

Creative went to US court, and the US International Trade Commission, to accuse Apple of infringing on its patent by using the technology in iPod and Nano players.

"Creative is very fortunate to have been granted this early patent," Apple chief executive Steve Jobs said in a statement. "This settlement resolves all of our differences with Creative, including the five lawsuits currently pending between the companies, and removes the uncertainty and distraction of prolonged litigation."

Apple would pay Creative 100 million dollars for a license to use the technology and would be able to recover some of the money if Creative licensed the patent to others, according to the companies.

Under the terms of the settlement, Creative, an Apple rival in the MP3 player market, would also begin marketing its own line of iPod accessories as part of Apple's "Made for iPod" program.

"We're very pleased to have reached an amicable settlement with Apple and to have opened up significant new opportunities for Creative," said Creative chairman and CEO Sim Wong Hoo.
"Apple has built a huge ecosystem for its iPod and with our upcoming participation in the Made for iPod program we are very excited about this new market opportunity."

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

there's something about ..... youth

I can't help it...



Today I had a sms "conversation" with a buddy on this piece of news. He used to be a volunteer there.

me: wah... 13k a month.. like cannot see what they do here.

buddy: hello... they now do UN projects liao ok... they see singapore no up liao.

me: wah... singapore youth not challenging enuff issit...

buddy: no... they go other countries to con other youth....


anyway... read the article and discover certain information...

The founder was in the mist of a Crisis Management conference in Malacca when he was interrupted about this crisis back home. I must say... he managed the Crisis quite well.

When ask about allegations that he ran Youth Challenge like a "one-man show" like T.T Durai.... He replied "I'M THE FOUNDER."

Now I know. When face with Crisis... deal with it with arrogance.


The founder revealed that he's paid ABOUT 13k a month. He said "I can't remember exactly as I don't update my bank book all the time".

Hmmmm.... come to think of it.... I have never update my bank book. The bank always send me a statement.


13k a month. Last year they raised 400k of donations. Plus 100k of reserve. His pay p.a over the total fund is a astonishing 31%

Monday, August 21, 2006

there's something about ..... national day rally (updated)

I have watched the Rally since a young age. I remembered the LKY's days when he flashed alot of charts and graphs. I remembered his last Rally where I thought it was really poignant.

I have watch GCT's first rally all the way to his last rally. How he has changed the tone of the rally to include humour.

I have also watch PM Lee's first rally. Veli long. Veli Sian. But since last year, he has improved the whole rally concepts to include some humour plus videos.

It was expected days before his rally that he would mention about Blogging, Mr Brown and Bah Chor Mee.

And the anticipation of those mention was high. He encouraged and recognised the impact of Blogging. He listed as a funny website, some funny and some not so funny, according to him.

He mentioned about Mr Brown, even mention his real name. He said that what Mr Brown said was wrong and the Government has the right to rebuke him.

He mentioned Bah Chor Mee. He implied that should podcast be used for political reasons, then the PAP may have to engage JACK NEO to do a podcast on "MEE SIAM MAI HARM".

eerrrr ......... PM Lee..... can tell me which stall you patronise.....

Check out the lastest Podcast from Mr Brown