Monday, May 21, 2007

End Note

A sad thing about life is that when you meet someone who means a lot to you only to find out in the end that it was never bound to be and you just have to let go.

~ best sums up the greater part of my past 5 years. Each succesive fall stings just as bad as the 1st, & getting up never gets any easier. When one of life's harshest lesson gets thrown at you, you'll just have to suck it up & take it head on. Get up & move on. Always easier said than done. I'm like a stubborn mule on a steep learning curve...

Happiness lies for those who cry, those who hurt, those who have searched, and those who have tried. For only they can appreciate the importance of people who have touched their lives.

Will i ever learn? When will i finally get to end on a high note to put a close to this & begin the next great chapter in life?
Perhaps one day, someday...

Spending weekends off work are costly. Always have that insatiable urge to spend, spend, & spend during my offdays. But looking at the increasing hours logged in the sweatroom each week, this'll be a worthy buy. Physique fitness refinement efforts aside, the other 'physique' of mine that is in need of a bulk-up is my bank account... but with my increasingly diminishing drive to work OTs, it's proving to be yet another M:I. Whatever happened to my unwavering DRIVE? i wonder.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

1st Online Shopping Experience

Made my first ever online purchase sometime ago. The package was delivered to my door step a couple of days ago, after 14-long-awaited days from the initial order date during which, I’ve lost some sleep worrying whether my prized purchase had got lost along the way, sent to the wrong address, got swapped, etc. ~ $$ down the drain? Thankfully it arrived in one piece ~ in immaculate condition. Having heard of countless of online purchase horror stories – getting conned into buying counterfeit products, to receiving defective products/damaged packaging or actual product that is inferior as to what was described in the initial pre-order specification; I decided to stick with the bigger & more reputable online retail sites ~ Global in this case to source for a foreign audio CD release, dating back to 2005. It may not be the cheapest bargain on the net, but the offered prices are relatively comparable (just don’t compare the local bargains at Kenyalang Park).

Most of the Japan music releases of the current years come in different versions; the Japan version for the domestic Japanese market (which, costs an arm & a leg) & the Overseas version for the general foreign audience. Opted for the premium Japan version, priced at whooping USD25.49 (x 3.402 exchange rate) over the USD17.99 Overseas version (is also no way cheap by local standards), because it qualifies for the free shipping that the latter does not. Standard shipping (6 – 14 days) would have costs USD4.99. With a few bucks difference, going for the premium is a no brainer.

Some cite that the Overseas version is inferior in terms of quality compared to the more expensive Japan version; though the only difference is usually in the printings, booklets ~ some extra stuff, & rarely in some cases extra song tracks, for audio CD. One thing to note is that when it comes to DVDs, there are fundamental differences: Japan uses DVD2 encoding format, whereas the rest of the SEA uses DVD3. So you definitely don’t want to buy a Japan version DVD release which will not be compatible with our DVD player, though both regions are sharing the same NTSC TV broadcast standard. Overseas version are usually manufactured, marketed & distributed by licensed regional recording companies to provide a more competent localized pricing. So it is definitely cheaper, but is quality compromised? Maybe, or maybe not.

An authentic Japan version ~ ¥2667 tag is quite unnerving…

Time to sit back & enjoy the tunes of my latest musical fad collection. I just dig contemporary classical music =)

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Lap Time: 3.5km in 20mins

I have always toyed with the idea of trying out a full marathon of certain pedigree; i.e. the Penang Bridge Marathon (another reason for a vacation up north), held annually in mid-June. Coincidentally, I’ll be in Penang by then, to attend an old buddy’s wedding on the 24th. Checking out the details of the marathon, is enough to make me chicken out. 22.3km for a HALF-marathon. Full marathon? I doubt if i can get anywhere close to finishing the 42.195km, before the bridge opens up for traffic. Sounds like a mammoth task to me.

So far, my cardio workouts have always been limited sub-6km in 40 mins sessions, max. On stationary treadmills. Perhaps I should go out to get some fresh air & find a running partner. And start by setting my sights on a less ambitious marathon conquest…

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Souvenir from Prague

~ from a dear colleague away on a month long biz trip to Erfurt; been to places eh... Thanks, dude!
for being so thoughtful. I'm sure i'll put this gadget to good use someday =p

Sunday, May 06, 2007

~ how much it costed for a pair of brand new constant-velocity joint for the front drive-shaft (one that allows a rotating shaft to transmit power through a variable angle at a constant rotational speed), plus a reconditioned 1/2 drive-shaft (for that jammed front passenger's side) replacement. Lesson learnt: The next time the drive-shaft starts making noise, don't bother looking for a rebuilt job (supposedly cheaper alternative) ~ mine barely lasted 2 months; better to opt for brand new replacement parts (at least you'll get to skip the pray-for-it-to-work part), though it'll definitely put a sting in your pocket... ouch! still feeling it. Thankfully the gearbox was spared, otherwise i'll likely staring at a 4-figure repair bill. Got my ride back, after a week's idle in the workshop; she ain't whining no more. Time to put her thru some 'rehabilitation' =p

Tuesday, May 01, 2007


You seem to have the oddest of a name, fitting for a real drama queen who’s always outstandingly outspoken. We’ve been course-mates in our uni-days but have never really clicked early on coz we don’t belong to the same clique. You knew very well that I belonged to the banana category, but you would only speak to me in hua yu; I found out soon after that you actually speak fluent hokkien at home. You practiced language discrimination against me! You were that intimidating to talk to, like most foochow-poh.

Having nothing much in common, we were hardly even on speaking terms. However, that changed when we became unlikely housemates during our internship term in a vibrant little island up north, known as the Pearl of the Orient. Oh, how it was real troublesome fun having you around as a housemate. Caring, sensible & reliable in character but hardly without the tendency to morph into a dramatic blur sotong any moment.

You & your dramatic tales, your bathroom-hogging antics, your sporadic thunderous laughter, your weekly mic-hogging hardly audible session at Redbox, your over-indulgence in your durian-flower dish (#-p… we had that for 1 week straight), & your hilarious squabbles with my beloved room-mate over the smallest & trivial-est of matters (I guess that’s some people’s way of showing care & affection; you 2 are 1 of a kind =p). Though, we were always at it, mercilessly poking fun at each other; you laughed at my near-non-existent fluency in spoken hua yu then (not anymore!), made fun of my retarded motor-skills at racquet games (bully, ah!), dissed my eating habits (you've got a personal vendetta against people who are prone to eating slowly isit??), & treated me like I was your personal chauffeur.

On getting even ~ we had a good laugh at your experimental hair-style change gone wrong, & started to affectionately call you ‘donkey’ eversince (Intel's donkey)… been missing your ‘elephunt’ dance moves during those frequent clubbing nights. Those were the carefree internship days when life was much more ‘happening’ & the feeling of friendship cheer felt so stronger, despite not having much to live by; meager allowances & bas mini was the only form of transportation. The fond memories will always live on.

Fast forward 3 years on, & at yet another major crossroad in life. Glad that you’ve finally secured a big-shot career opportunity that you truly deserved. Oil & gas = Bigtime $$ =) Though, leaving behind all that you’re familiar with ~ home, friends, family & the semiconductor field in general has not been an easy decision, I’m sure. Days spent in uncertainty, anxious waits, & long thoughts; pondering on what the future may be (i'm still)… After all we’re always seeking for greener pastures in life, & in the pursuit of our dreams sometimes there are tough decisions & sacrifices to make. But as always, you’ve got a clear mind on the direction to take in life, you’ll go a long way ~ Cheers, buddy! =)

It's Labour day, & i haven't got much to do, lazying around at home. Did not bother to volunteer myself for public holiday duty, despite the lucrative OT payback. With the kind of scorching hot weather outside, it'll be near impossible for me to continue hibernating without breaking a sweat. So i figured, spending the afternoon catching a movie at the cineplex would better. Bought the tickets well before noon; half the seats were already booked... catching a much anticipated movie on its opening day, on a public holiday somemore; large turnout to be expected... which means plenty of eye-candies too =p

Just hope this movie lives up to its hype