Friday, June 30, 2006
Since I knew you are a reporter, I believe you won't be plagued by my few questions.
(1) Has it ever crossed your mind that Lois & a few of your colleagues are rather thick - I mean they couldn't recognise you as Superman when you exactly look like Superman minus the geeky glasses?
(2) Spiderman's uncle told him "with Great Power comes Great Responsibility". Is this the same concern for you and that's why you'd rather let Lois Lane, the woman who has reciprocal love for you, to be with Richard?
(3) In order not to waste the mileage, have you ever thought about to get an airline company to issue you a frequent flyer card?
(4) How do you determine the urgency of people you need to save? I mean, you can't be in 5 places simultaneously, and how do you choose who to save first?
(5) Do you get upset when you can't save some of the victims who are crying out for your help? Does the man of steel has a good matrix to share with re: overcome your guilt?
(6) What made you decide to wear your Superman's underwear on the outside? Just in case if you haven't followed any of the Hollywood fashion reviews, this has been the fashion faux pas for two decades.
(7) Have you ever thought about your retirement age? I mean, it is dangerous to fly at the age of 80.
(8) Have you seriously thought about your succession plan? Who'll be your best choice - Spiderman, Batman & Robin, The Incredibles or the Fantastic Four?
Thanks in advance for answering.
Faithfully your fan,
Thursday, June 29, 2006
I was slightly suprised to hear from today's CCTV news that a number of European genes were detected when archeologists sent samples of some Terracotta Warriors at Emperor Qin Shi Huang's Mausoleum for DNA testing.
I believe in Science and strongly believe the discovery of DNA has facilitated our lives in many ways. However, I am not convinced and it simply does not make sense that these European labourers travelled all the way to China to be soldiers for a foreign ruler (implication: there was no report ever been documented that Emperor Qin was a generous ruler that paid all his soldiers well in order to attract foreign soldiers to the Land of the Dragon. If he did, then there won't be Terracotta Warriors in the first place) and this all happened around 246 BC.
The Terracotta Warriors and Horses are the most significant archeological excavations of the 20th century. It was listed by UNESCO in 1987 as one of the world cultural heritages.
In Autumn 2004, Mama and Papa joined me to South Korea, Daejon, when I attended a conference on Knowledge Management (which I preferred to call Knowledge Enhancement).
Mama insisted we should stay in a hotel with traditional Korean rooms. Thanks God Mama is a dedicated Korean soap fan, otherwise I might sleep on the blanket and use the thin mattress as blanket. Don't call me silly. You would have similar experience if you had never seen one before.
Monday, June 26, 2006
My personal peeves (for today) are:
(1) People spit when I eat
(2) Wishy-washy and can't even decide what to eat after half an hour!
(3) Take food from my plate w/o my permission, or put things on my plate when I am eating w/o my consent - they are disrupting my science of eating
(4) Adult men/women who dirty talk in public
(5) Over-arrogance men/women who can't even spare a minute to listen to others' views, and interrupted every 5 seconds: listen, listen to me first ...
(6) Men who gawk at women's chest
(7) Women who cry unnecessarily
(8) Those who borrow my things especially books and never bother to return them
(9) People who don't reply to my text messages, and when I called to ask, s/he told me: sorry I didn't receive your message. I believe they've forgotten there is something called: DST 151 Customer Helpline
(10) People who don't answer my call/s and don't reply my missed calls
(11) People purposely say words that they knew those words would hurt me
Thursday, June 22, 2006
One of my good friends has recently found her love. I feel so happy for her. She is a good woman. She is a friend who would cook for you, listen patiently to you, volunteer to drive you around when you are without a car.
"Love Is All Around" is one of my most favourite songs! It's good to listen to when you curl up with a cup of latte, sitting by your window looking at busy people and busy cars outside in a cold winter afternoon. This song is for you ... my friend:
To J & S:
I feel it in my fingers
I feel it in my toes
Love is all around me
And so the feeling grows
It’s written on the wind
It’s everywhere I go
oh yes it is
So if you really love me Come on and let it show
You know I love you I always will
My mind’s made up by the way that I feel
There’s no beginning
There’ll be no end
‘Cause on my love You can depend
I see your face before me as I lay on my bed
I kinda get to thinking of all the things you said
oh yes I did You gave your promise to me And I gave mine to you
I need someone beside me in everything I do
oh yes I do
You know I love you I always will
My mind’s made up by the way that I feel
There’s no beginning
There’ll be no end
‘Cause on my love You can depend
Ooh, it’s written in the wind everywhere I go
So if you really love me Come on and let it show
Come on and let it show...
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
Remember how you wished you had a TARDIS like Dr Who when you were a kid so you could be in Brunei this minute and in London the next minute!
Those who have watched Dr Who would not forget his TARDIS. The TARDIS is the time machine used by the title character of the BBC television programme Doctor Who. The name TARDIS is in fact the acronym for Time And Relative Dimensions In Space. As well as being able to travel to any point in time and space, the TARDIS has a chameleon circuit, which enables it to alter its external shape so as to blend in inconspicuously with its surroundings. When the Doctor visited Earth in late 1963, his TARDIS materalised in the shape of a police box. The chameleon circuit then promptly failed, leaving the TARDIS stuck as a police box.
One of the more fascinating aspects of the TARDIS is that its exterior and interior do not exist in the same dimension. The practical upshot of this is that its interior is dimensionally transcendental; in other words, it's bigger on the inside than on the outside. The decision by the production team for the TARDIS to be permanently in the shape of a police box was probably made for budgetary reasons, as otherwise a new exterior would have been required for each story.
The remake of Doctor Who was launched on 26th March 2005 to the small screen, with Christopher Eccleston as the Doctor. A new TARDIS prop was constructed for the new show. One interesting fact I found out recently: although the first episode of Doctor Who was broadcast on 23rd November 1963, it wasn't until the mid-1970's that the first police box marketed as official Dr Who merchandise became available.
When I was 6 or 7 years old, a girl classmate in school had a TARDIS money box - she told the class it was a gift from his uncle who was studying in London at that time. I could still recall how upset I was seeing that she had something that I could never ever had - something that I really liked at that time. London was too far from me when I was a kid. I was upset for almost a month, and one afternoon when I came home from school I saw on our dining table stood a red money box that replicated the British phone booth.
The word TARDIS now is an official word in the English language with an entry in the 2002 edition of the Oxford English Dictionary.
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
This year's Fathers' Day, We bought Papa a Tiramisu cake instead of the usual bluberry fresh cream cake. My father introduced the family to blueberry cake in the 80s when blueberry concept was first introduced in Brunei's bakery.
My sister's blog has awoken me:
It was Papa who told me that not only men should pursue further education, women have equal rights to everything that men have. If you think that you are born a girl therefore you would be denied similar opportunities as the boys, then you should work triple hard than the boys to prove that you are as capable as them, if possible strive for even more capable than them. Always remember you cannot be weak. You have to set a good, positive example for your younger sister and brother.
Papa, Happy Fathers' Day!
I've talked quite a bit on the topic of love recently, today I'm going to shift to the topic of friendship.
Some days when I feel guilty for over-indulging in my work, I'll send text messages (to find out if they are not driving or not caught up in a meeting) and followed up by a phone call to let friends know I am okay and how's their life been treating them.
There are days I will call my old friends like Gabriel* & Godol* at 11pm to chat basically on anything ranges from work, their girlfriend to serious issues like Miss Congeniality's World Peace (hehe ....). It was the same when I was in Brisbane. I would call A-dang* & Song* (my good buddies in UQ before) anytime when I felt like chatting, and they had never not answered my calls. I'm too complacent with the friendships situation I have, and therefore unaware that some of my text messages might be seen as nuisance and/or my phone calls are value-added burden to some friends.
Why did I say that?
Precisely four days ago, I had lunch with two friends. This is how the conversation went:
Pancake: Last Saturday I called a friend on his handphone trying to find out how is he getting on with his new job. He didn't answer my call. Strange. May be he was outstation?
Friend A** (male): No company will send a new guy outstation after only 2 weeks working with them.
Pancake: Well, he's not exactly new at that agency. He was seconded there for 8 months before the confirmation.
Friend B ** (female): May be he didn't receive your call. I didn't see your missed call when you told me you called me the last time, remember like two months ago.
Pancake: Really? OK, I am convinced.
Friend A** (male): You know ... you shouldn't be calling or sending him text anymore. He might be taking those as signals that you are interested in him. His rejecting your phone call and not replying your text are his replies that he is not interested in you!
Pancake: BUT I AM NOT INTERESTED IN HIM! I just want to find out how is he getting on in his new job, as a friend who cares.
Friend B** (female): Agreed. Pancake always does that. She called me often when I was at my last phase of PhD to see if I was coping okay. She treats everyone the same. If she likes the guy, I think she will let him know upright. Right?
Pancake: Yes! Absolutely. I wasn't aware that, from men's point of view, a friend calling another friend implies that she's interested in him, and vice versa!?!? So I called Friend B when she was in Australia, did that suggest I was a lesbian infatuating in her?? (Laugh with Friend B).
I used to think ICT narrows down our communication gap. However, now I feel ICT in fact pulls people apart if the technology is not efficienctly used.
* These are real names.
**Real names will be revealed only when I've consents from friends. So, if you knew I was referring to you and you would like your real name be revealed, send me a text to my handphone. Prove to me we are not Flintstones.
Monday, June 19, 2006
Sometimes I wish there is a "portable truth detector" selling in a supermarket, which you could buy like a thermometer.
Yesterday a friend sent me a text asking me: How do you detect whether a friend is infatuated with you, is in love with you, or just simply likes you as an ordinary friend?
I pondered and then I replied her text: Wait, give me 5 years to invent a "portable truth detector" and that will ease your worries and simplify your decisions.
The circuit diagram for the Polygraph was quoted from: http://www.hackcanada.com/ice3/wetware/lie_detector_circuit.html
In fact, life was easier back then when we were in high school. You liked a girl, you sent a paper message through her best friend and waited for her reaction. You liked the senior boy in your cousin's class, you bought him a pen and waited if he used the pen. High school kids did't think much to hide their feelings, and I believe that is the way love should be treated.
We adults are too wishy-washy in our decisions, and not good in expressing our true feelings. In the field of love and romance, many of us have many, in fact too many, questions but we don't ask. We end up asking ourselves too often, too much, and finally our gut instinct goes on strike and negativity swamps and poisons our thoughts. Examples of some common questions: She laughed because she found me silly or she laughed with me to compliment my jokes? Must I stick to the three days rule before I call him to compliment on his culinary skills so I wouldn't be seen as "too interested", or should I call now?
Mathematically speaking, you are seriously-voluntarily cutting down the amount of quality time you could spend with her/him. One minute you are hesitating = One minute less in the time you could spend with her/him. God can't guarantee you will meet the same person again in your next life. I have learnt this lesson in an expensive way. He has sent me many signs and I have ignored all. God has given me many opportunities to clarify things with "Mr Scorpio" and I rejected all. Not until Mr Scorpio got married then I began to notice all the signs that have been around me glittering in the highest voltage that they could to alert me. I saw but not looked. Too late, but all are too late now.
So, now is time to start re-packing your thoughts - what makes you an adult?
(a) reveals the truth and face the fact that she/he might or might not have reciprocal feelings; or
(b) hides your true feeling and dare to face the fact that in another month or so she/he might be with another person who has more courage to reveal their feelings.
Saturday, June 17, 2006
Love is ..... Mama and Papa always tells us they are character-incompatible. Somewhow I found it not convincing because, for example, everytime when they are at the fish market, they would venture into different directions but they come back 15 minutes later with a bundle each that contained same fish in exactly same quantity!
Tanya Chua Recently won the Best Female Singer at the 17th Global Melody Awards held in Taiwan. She is a popular singing artist from Singapore who has been described as a combination of Sheryl Crow, Alanis Morissette and Joni Mitchell. Her first album, “Bored,” became one of Singapore’s fastest-selling albums in 1997. I must admit I never liked Tanya Chua's songs until last September I heard the crowd favourite she sang with Stephanie Sun called Yuan Dian "Original Point".
The lyrics are meaningful, especially this part of the chorus:
Don't feel sorry for me
You have to be good to her who is currently beside you
Don't let your love with her defeated again by time
If she is the one, don't let her go
Chemistry is the best tool of communication.
I believe, chemistry plays a significant part in love. When she pouts, you know she disagrees. You can continue each other's sentences subconsciously. You know what annoys him. He knows what makes you smile. You have a common joke that others can't rationalise. Both of you share a song.
I once watched a movie which the female lead left the male lead at the ending (all audiences sighed at that scene because everyone thought the female lead has found her Mr Right). Before the movie ended, the female lead said: There is no song between us. When you are in love, there is a song that both of you are sharing, and the song keeps playing in the background which others couldn't feel. I asked you many times before what song was it playing on your mind when you first saw me. You looked puzzled and I knew you heard none that I listened to. There is no common song between us.
Pink, Rose, Love: Paintings from the 1960's
In contrast to Goldfarb's later canvases, which are more controlled and compulsive, "Pink, Rose, Love" is one of her early works which reveals a colour sensibility that is soft and forceful.
I love particularly this part of its lyrics:
I feel the weight of the world on my shoulder
As I'm getting older y'all people get colder
Most of us only care about money makin
Selfishness got us followin the wrong direction
Wrong information always shown by the media
Negative images is the main criteria
Infecting their young minds faster than bacteria
Kids wanna act like what the see in the cinema
Whatever happened to the values of humanity
Whatever happened to the fairness and equality
Instead of spreading love, we're spreading anomosity
Lack of understanding, leading us away from unity
That's the reason why sometimes I'm feeling under
That's the reason why sometimes I'm feeling down
It's no wonder why sometimes I'm feeling under
I gotta keep my faith alive, until love is found
Thursday, June 15, 2006
I like a Japanese Buddhism proverb which says:
"When the Student Is Ready,
The Teacher Appears".
I am sure many of you have encountered similar experience before - Sometimes friends blame us for not sharing and exchanging information.
Pancake: Hey, I found a new approach to solve that dilemma in my paper we discussed two days ago.
Friend: I don't think there is any other ways you could solve that dilemma, because the original tecnique doesn't allow any variation.
Pancake: Give me 5 minutes, I will explain the key elements and you make your judgement after my explanation, and see if it make sense.
Friend listened for less than 30 seconds and interrupted: Listen, listen, I tell you what, your suggestion is not going to work. It's not realistic from my point of view.
Pancake: OK, never mind. I still believe it will work.
Two months down the road I presented the paper and it was well received. The same friend phoned me: Hey, how come never mention of that new technique to me before?
Pancake: That IS THE SAME TECHNIQUE that you thought was not working.
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
The current trophy, which was first awarded at the 1974 games in Germany, is not the same one handed over to Uruguay for their victory in the inaugural event on home soil in 1930.
The original trophy, the "Jules Rimet Cup," named after the president of world soccer's world governing body, FIFA, from 1921-1954, was stolen in Brazil in 1983 after the soccer superpower won it permanently for their third World Cup success in 1970.
The trophy has never been recovered and many believe that thieves melted it down, leaving Brazil with only a replica of the cup. However, that wasn't the first time the cup had gone missing.
After surviving World War II hidden under a bed in an Italian home, the World Cup trophy was stolen during a public exhibition just before the 1966 England World Cup. Fortunately, the trophy was found under a bush by a dog named Pickles before the tournament began (what a coincidence, my family dog is called Pickles too!!!).
The current FIFA World Cup trophy was made by Italian sculptor Silvio Gazazniga in 18 carat gold and depicts players supporting the earth. It is 36 centimeters tall and weighs 4.97 kilograms.
The trophy was first displayed in Korea in 1997 at an event organized by a FIFA sponsor.
As FIFA itself now keeps the original trophy, the champions of World Cup's tournament will take home a gold-plated replica, which is a little smaller than the original.
Under FIFA regulations revised after the disappearance of the Jules Rimet Cup, even three-time champions cannot permanently keep the trophy.
At the foot of the trophy are inscribed the names of past champions. Some information reported that the famous trophy was already full with inscriptions of past champions after the 2002 World Cup.
Wonder is it a "new trophy" for this year's World Cup?
I am not too well-versed with soccer games. Overall, I found yesterday evening game a bit wishy-washy in the first half for both teams, so I switched off my telly when it was Australia nil against Japan 1. Honestly, I was shocked when my sister Woofhams sms-ed me around 11ish, telling me the score was Australia 3 against Japan 1 - great play by Socceroos!
For today's games, not much predictions needed for Brazil Vs Croatia. How about South Korea Vs Togo, and France Vs Switzerland? What's your pickings?
32 Teams, 64 Games, 1 Prize.
Monday, June 12, 2006
Picture above: LG Chocolate
Speak of Nokia N80, I've finally decided to step out of comfort zone and ventured into PDA phone. So, I bought O2 Mini S instead.
Reason of not buying O2 or other smartphones before: (1) hate to use stylus and (2) dislike to be part of the stereotyping statistics.
Main reason for buying O2 eventually: don't want to be too complacent with Nokia.
Picture above: My latest pet, O2 Mini S
Sunday, June 11, 2006
Thursday, June 08, 2006
Today I am going to share another interesting "Love Boat" story. A swan fell in love with a swan-shaped paddle boat (which is 5 times his size) near the German town of Muenster. So what said in glossy magazines are right: Love is blind. However, in this German swan case - it also seems very A.I. (aka Artificial Intelligence).
Congratulations, Pancake! Your IQ score is 118.
This number is based on a scientific formula that compares how many questions you answered correctly on the Classic IQ Test relative to others. Your Intellectual Type is Precision Processor. This means you're exceptionally good at discovering quick solutions to problems, especially ones that involve math or logic. You're also resourceful and able to think on your feet. And that's just some of what we know about you from your test results.
Based on my careful analysis of the last sentence (which I kept in bold), I believe the time and emotion of oneself would have impact on the score too. I used to score a 130! Disappointing.
Wednesday, June 07, 2006
The streets in Berlin weren't as quiet as you've seen in pictures when I took them. I've managed to get those Germans to move so I could get a clear view of "snowy Berlin".
I believe my sister Woofhams will look superb in this orange outfit, and I will look good in the two greens. I particularly like the green with beige jacket.
I've a German friend called Udo. He's more than 6 feet tall, and when we walked together in UQ before we really looked like a giant & a dwarf! Udo is the most funny/friendliest guy & the most filial man I've ever come to know. He "stole" some lollipops for me from his officemate's desk when we first met. Vanessa and I used to call him Adrien Brody, may be because he moved to our building coincided with the time Adrien Brody won the Grammy. Recalled back, I couldn't find other reasons why did Van & I gave him that nick. Udo didn't look geeky to me. In fact, he's more ER's Dr Green, Friends' Russ & Harry Potterish (because of his glasses) than Adrien Brody-ish.
Regarding the filial part, his grandma was very ill in 2003, and he took half a year off his PhD to look after her. I really admire that filial part of him at that time. And I was deeply moved by him two days before his departure, a few of us decided to give him a farewell lunch at UQ's Wordsmith Cafe. I backed out from the plan last minute because it coincided my meeting with my supervisor. Udo told Song (another of my good buddy at UQ) to reschedule our lunch to afternoon tea so I could join them.
In fact, two of us had slight reciprocal feelings at that time, but neither knew how to express our feelings. We only revealed our feelings in e-mail many months after I've left Brisbane. Udo is currently seeing a girl, and I am happy for him because he's not cut out to be a long distance relationship material which implies it's no point for us to pursue the impossible.
I believe every good frienship brings many happy memories. With Udo, memories are sweet. I don't wish to turn back the clock, because I knew he's currently very happy with the right woman.
Monday, June 05, 2006
During a casual chat with a new friend in Vietnam two weeks ago, he asked me what are my three greatest fear?
He told me his list: (a) boss misunderstands him; (b) women crying in front of him and (c) no peace.
I shared with him my list: (1) Marriage; (2) no money (hence no food on table) and (3) feeling helpless.
He showed me a disbelief face when he saw what appeared on top of my phoeb list. He immediately commented that I shouldn't have a lack of suitors to prove that first answer wrong. In fact, he was wrong. My marriage phoebia began when I was 14 or 15 years old (Thanks to my unnecessary good long term memory). I started to lose faith in the marriage institution ever since I saw in a movie a poor, married man swept away all food on the dining table which his skinny wife was about to eat. From then on, I am afraid of marriage, no money, no food and the sense of helplessness (the exact feeling the poor wife must have felt when her angry husband threw away her food).
I fear in my marriage:
1. my husband would hit me with a baseball bat
2. my husband would ignore all my creative suggestions and think they are all rubbish
3. my husband would reduce my confidence to as low as a doormat
4. my husband would stop listening to me
5. my husband would think I could never be better or at least as good as him in everything
I once shared with Aunt Agnes that I am a marriage phoeb.
Guess what was her response?
Aunt Agnes: why made you think so?
Pancake: because I worried one day he'll stop to love me, and in one movie I watched many years ago, the husband hit the wife with a baseball bat and called her STUPID. You know how I hate people say the word S-T-U-P-I-D.
Aunt Agnes: don't worry my dear. With your arms' strength, it's more like the case of you hit your husband with your plain right hand than he hits you with a baseball bat.
Sigh ..... Aunt Agnes definitely not the right person to discuss marriage phoeb. She knew she was not only "like" but definitely was (IS) "in love" with Uncle Richard the minute she bumped into him when she was a secondary five student while Uncle Richard was the library assistant. They had a marathon, long distance relationship because grandpa sent Aunt away to work in a foreign land. Finally in 1986 (may be 9 years after their first date), they got married without blessing from grandpa. I admired Aunt Agnes for her courage. From day one of her marriage, she never regretted her choice and never doubt Uncle Richard's sincerity. They have had many ups and downs in their marriage, and have agreed to disagree on many issues, but never disagree for one minute that they will take care of each other till they are old, without teeth. How romantic. Now, they live together in Malaysia with two beautiful children, my cousins Belinda & Brian.
Now, what is/are your phoebia?
Sunday, June 04, 2006
There seems to be so many weddings going on lately. About three weeks ago, my cousin Linda married to her boyfriend of many years, Brian. Today is the big day of my another cousin, Steve, married to the woman of his dream, Wei-Wei. Next is the turn of my much younger cousin, Jeffery. Then, it might be followed by Colin, Boy-Boy, and then next June or August would be my own brother (Dato_K's) turn!
I love weddings, more specifically speaking, I love to attend weddings. I love the merrier atmosphere of weddings. Everyone laughs, everyone toasts. Kids running around, in-laws give funny speeches. It's a great opportunity for family to come together, reunion of friends you haven't met in a while, and also it's a focal point for boys to meet girls (and vice versa).