Thursday, March 31, 2005

:: world expo 2005, aichi, japan ::

** update **

the japanese prime minister 'wins expo bento battle"

Average families scored a win Thursday as Aichi World Expo organizers will bow to pressure from Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and allow visitors to bring in hand-made bento lunches, according to the premier's mail magazine.Koizumi's mail magazine said that he expected The Japan Association for the 2005 World Exposition Aichi to announce changes to a highly criticized policy that has outlawed expo visitors from bringing in bento lunches and canned and bottled drinks.



how i wish i could visit the world expo that is currently going on in Aichi, Japan.

Singapore has boasted that our pavilion is the biggest and located at the prime location among its Asian friends.

Important global leaders are said to be paying the expo a visit and it was also featured in last weekend's edition of the Straits Times and Sunday Times - among the story, how a Singaporean couple has booked a holiday to visit the expo because it would be like 'visiting all over the world' in one location.

The key features of the Singapore pavilion are spelt out as follows:

Spanning 972 square metres, Singapore’s Pavilion is designed based on the theme “World Without Walls”. Visitors to the Pavilion will get a ‘sneak preview’ of Singapore and experience its colourful sights and sounds, its multi-faceted cultures and beauty through multi-sensory and interactive displays and exhibits, as well as personal accounts of Singaporeans, and Japanese who have worked or lived in Singapore.

its mascots are the ever-cutesy japanese kind as shown below:

but, you may ask, what is the point of this post?

just read yuki's post and facts about the aichi expo...and you will only swallow your own saliva, because the gist is...going to the loo will cost you 600 yen (SG$9.24)!

4600 yen for entry fee.
1 hour to get in linear motor car.
1 hour to get in the site.
Ropeway for transportation within the site is charged.
3000 people max for pavillion.
NPO rents out bicycles because transportation methods are too crowded.
Bringing food is not allowed.
Bringing snacks is allowed.
600 yen for using the toilet.
600 yen for drinking water.
600 yen for Coca-cola.
3000 yen for Japanese style lunch.
1000 yen for pasta.
1000 yen for curry rice.
13000 yen for a course dinner..
450000 people were calculated to come in the first three days, but only 150000 cam
by the way, yuki is also a great photographer and artist.

and our STPB officials there at the expo, they better have a good time and promoting the ever ailing tourist industry here, talk about the impending casino leh...

still intend of going? you can book your tickets online here

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

:: tax returns is due soon, u know...::

have y'all file your income tax yet? or in tech-geek speak...eFile yet?

and they also got mediacorp real-life husband and wife artists to promote it on the telly...what's his name? i only know Pan Ling Ling, especially when I had a huge crush on her many years ago...

i have not, but the updated myTax portal looks simple enough really, especially when my employer does not have the auto-inclusion of the earnings....darn!

tried all means to see if i could get more rebates/relief/benefits to try/not to...or at least, pay minimal tax possible....sigh! but u know them, always got conditions and 'eligibility' terms.

anyhow, i do like the tax death angel's sense of humour the tagline:

Monday, March 28, 2005

:: oh no, not again ::


now, CNA has more reports (mostly from phone calls from their correspondents who sounded dead sleepy and tired, and some residents who called about the tremors at their house).

Kudos to Metro TV of Indonesia, for being the first to show 'live' news coverage of the quake...


just past 1 am and a friend had sms'ed that there has been a major earthquake near to the epicenter of the last tsunami tragedy, and how glad he was that i've returned from phuket.

thanks, chin!

his wife has felt some movement at their apartment in the eastern side of Singapore too.

tuned in the news channels of cnn and bbc, (forget channelnewsasia, as they had only the latest headline tag at the bottom of the screen).

it was confirmed that there has been an earthquake at 8.2 (CNA reported it to be 8.5) of the richter scale at north sumatra. there were no live pictures yet, just graphic to illustrate the geographical location of the quake as well as the weather experts analysis.

Huge quake hits Indonesian coast

A powerful earthquake in the Indian Ocean has hit the coast of Indonesia's tsunami-hit island of Sumatra, triggering a tsunami alert.

The quake was given a magnitude of 8.2 by the US geological survey who have warned it could cause tidal waves

The epicentre was located at about 200 km (125 miles) off the mainland.

The US Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said the quake could cause a "widely destructive tsunami" in the area around its epicentre.

via bbcworld

this is totally deja-vu for me, that was just like 26th Dec 2004, on a lazy sunday with news just coming in bits and pieces. i hope that everything will be ok, i will be optimistic.

i will pray for everyone's safety before i go to sleep (if i am able to go to sleep, that is), i will pray real hard! God, my heart is pounding real hard now....

:: 19-year-old Singaporean girl launches debut album in Japan::

this girl is doing what i have been dreaming to do, that is, to be come a pop star in Japan...hahaha.

i have always dreamt that i could be a big star in Japan, dont care if as a singer or actor, or lagi best, both!

SINGAPORE : A Singaporean is set to make a splash on the global music scene.

Olivia Ong, 19, released her debut album to rave reviews across Japan this week.
"Girl meets Bossa Nova" is the title of Olivia's debut album which was launched after one-and-a-half years of hard work. The talented singer was spotted by a Japanese record company at a singing competition in Singapore when she was 15.


You can listen to her debut album samples and watch her promo MTV here, and I must say that with Bossa Nova as one of my favourite music genre, she has clear and innocent girly voices that reminded me of Keiko Matsuda.

I am looking forward for her album release here in June, and I wish her the best to be a big star not only in Japan, but all over the world...

Saturday, March 26, 2005

:: from fan mail..........NOT! ::

Enter your name to see a friendly message and some friendly boobies, like this....
(sorry, no offence, I hope as I've edited the naughty bits)

via :

:: which religion is the right one for you?::

i guess i should have taken this 'test' without pride and prejudice, but faith is something i guess it's hard to be open about, after all.

You scored as Islam. Your beliefs are most similar to those of Islam. Do more research on Islam and possibly consider taking the shahadah and officially becoming a Muslim, if you aren't already.

Despite the actions of some - who go against the teachings of Islam - Islam is a religion of peace; the word "islam" means "peace through submission to God." "Muslim" means "one who submits to God." Islam is the third of the three Abrahamic faiths, and it shares much with Judaism in Christianity; its differences are the acceptance of Muhammad as the last and final prophet, and the oneness of God - in other words, that Jesus, though he was a revered prophet, was not in fact God, and only one God exists. Apparently the Taliban could not read (though their name means "students"), because the Qur'an states that men and women are equal as believers, and that all believers should be educated and seek knowledge. Modesty in dress and behavior is required in Islam for both men and women to preserve the values of society and move the emphasis from superificial appearance to intelligence, knowledge, and God.



















Which religion is the right one for you? (new version)
created with

:: Artists Against AIDS Worldwide ::

with the recent headlines about gay parties, artistes and the one minister who lacked the EQ on handling the AIDS issue, i find that it is appropriate to highlight the attempts made by Artists Against AIDS Worldwide.

In September of 2001, superstar artists gathered in New York City to record a new version of Marvin Gaye's "What's Going On," as a call to stop the spread of AIDS in Africa. In the wake of the tragic September 11th terrorist attack in the United States, the artists felt compelled to dedicate a part of the proceeds of "What's Going On" as an inspirational song that calls on all of us to join together to create a world of compassion, healing, and love in all manners of life including AIDS relief.
coincidentally, this song happened to be my all-time favourite.

"unity and commitment will be needed if we are to bring AIDS under control"
- Nelson Mandela

take the hint Dr Balaji.

Friday, March 25, 2005

:: new toy ::

daddy's gotta new toy, again, due to impulsiveness to the object of my desire ;)

finally, joining in the mp3 foray but its not iPod nor Zen guys...just don't ask me why.

i'm not going to rave about what's good about it, i'm going to tell you what it's boring silver (not even red, blue, black nor pink!), its sound EQ only works with sony's atrac3-plus and equivalent formats. it needed an adapter for power and usb connection and it's rather loosely designed and its soft pouch case is useless for any protection.

but hey, i liked it...i guess i have my don't whack me for foregoing iPod or Zen....or why I choose boring silver, not some funky blue or black....

you can read the professional reviews here...

and here is the official image...hahaha

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

:: sexxxybloggers:

do ya think i'm sexy...

i changed my pic because of that...hehehe, but dare not to tag it at flickr though ;)

via Gonzo Journal

:: phuket 101 ::

as promised, here are some pics of the much has changed since my last visit in 1995.

my highlights of the trip are as follows:

1. daily beaching

1st day - patong beach

2nd day - karon beach

3rd day - katathani beach

needless to say, i'm all burnt all over

2. transport mode
i am happy that i have a motorcycle licence, which mean that fo 150 baht daily, i could rent one and explore the whole island...with some fear but without prejudice.

:: my ride and me - fierce huh? ::

i have been slapped with a fine on my 2nd nite for failing to produce a licence (blame me for giving the rental shop the license instead of my work pass instead...heheh).

:: the slap-bitch fine and off to the police station::

it was cumbersome, i was thought to be a thai (always the case) and then, saw many others who quickly ran away when the saw the cop at the road blocks....the thai guy caughted after me was also caught with some pills and condoms..hahah, but he is only charged with the same offence as me :)

u have to make your way to the police station, pay your fine on-the-spot and then return to collect your bike.....i think what will happen in our traffic police should impose such procedure.

3. friday prayer

i was lucky to change the mosque in phuket, historically it has been rather predominantly chinese and muslim thai (so i read in the guide). they have many from indian origin...that's why the popular street is known as soi bangla :)

::and you thought banglas are only in Serangoon Road::

4. drink kakis
i was lucky to meet up with 2 thai guys in one of the stop-overs (to see the view from the hill) who had offered me to drink with them.

:: the europeans love phuket for its cheap i was told by a dutch couple::
another drink companion was in the same table at a pub....we had reverse cocktail (Phuket Paradise for me and Singapore Sling for the thai...)

5. food
many posh restaurants and establishments offered discounts (up to 40%) due to the recent tsunami tragedy, which i had some western and japanese fares for dinners.
but my favourite daily staples, without any doubts, are tom yam soup and thai salad...yummy...

6. the tsunami aftermath.
the thai government tried its best to downplay the tragedy in order to maintain its tourism. this is practical and noble...nobody wanted to talk about it much, but everybody had somewhat felt and remembered them in their hearts, i'm sure....

:: tragedy sites near to the popular tourist spots are 'hidden' as construction or renovation, but things are not so easily 'covered up' in the outer parts of the island::

7.....lastly, the night entertainment.
i went to a club with live band with good singers and strong band (discount the raunchy and saucy outfits), these girls are really that good. they sang ska, hip hop, rock, techno and r&b...what else could you ask for?

:: bad quality pics as no cameras allowed and who will bring a digi-cam to take nite photos the mobile did the job ::

there is also a place for those who are still active after 3 am to rock-climb and eat and be merry, it's called the safari, and it is by the cliff which i had incidentally fall from my bike in my 'happy stupor' paiseh...but thais and tourists were ever helpful and spoke thai to me....heheheh..

who cares actually, i'm happy :)

to sum up my yet-again solo trip : FANTASTIC., but it will take me at least another year to go for a beach resort i am still into city holidays ;)

Monday, March 21, 2005

:: i am back ::

if you bother, i am back home.

beaten, tanned, spent, broke, fined, injured and helluva hang-over in phuket.

will update with pics and the (mis)adventures, when i get all over those above.

oh yeah, got a cut on my left eye (not from a drinking brawl, but from a funny motorbike accident at 4.3o am).

Thursday, March 17, 2005

:: phuket, here i come...::

:: its been that long, huh...::

it has been almost 10 years since my last trip.

that was when i had my hair all long and wavy and bungee-jumped for the first time.

this time, it is me with the lesser hair and can't seemed to be excited anymore....equipped with only a cheap air-ticket, hell, i really do not have anything arranged.....>

with no plans whatsoever, i really do not know what will i do there....maybe i will return few books, sun-tan, eat, rent a motorbike, take pics and try not to think about work at all.

wish me luck people...see you!

ps: did i also mention that this is my annual birthday get-away? ;)

:: how to work at home ?::

with this giant machine loading and unloading stuff from the apartment's roof top....


Wednesday, March 16, 2005

:: my online pipe-music ::

despite my earlier allegiance to lushFM, i have to admit that i have been unfaithful, BUT only on Fridays, from 9 to 11 pm.

it's zouk radio at wkrz fm. and the best thing is, it is always refresh weekly with the new playlists...

it always get me in the right mood for my clubbing friday nite...enjoy people!

:: tele-commute (and all that in between) ::

finally, the Boss emailed that he is ok with the fact that i could stay at home to complete my white papers for a client (which is due end of this month) - like he can read my mind, since i never actually asked his permission.

already, it's been 3 days since i did not turn up in the office, where else do they expect me to be?

anyhow, i missed my IPPT this morning because of the persistent cough, but this is the 1st time that i miss the all-important-physical-tests for NSman like me. i am very fit, let me tell ya -- never failed a single IPPT and my worst medal is Silver (ie: 200 bucks).

after reporting to my station with the doctor's letter to exempt me for any form of stupid physical tests for 14 days, i decided to go car-shopping at Ubi. i thought with the recent interest hike and the COE increase, which will, of course, mean a higher car prices - the car showrooms will be empty.

and i am right, so i took full advantage to test drive these 2 cars :

  1. Nissan Latio (hmm....i like the kinky name)
  2. Toyota Altis
i will not get technical and all-knowing car reivews, but all i can say is that (1) is a very good drive and class (that's from me being a gadget geek) , but the high price really is a turn-off.
(2) can do the job of getting point a to b - nothing fanciful but luxurious enough, just the kind of car that average joe will love, especially if they are a family man.

i had lunch with my uni friend (who coincidentally works at Toyota), and he advised me that this is not really a good time to buy a car (hint..hint...) it's a waiting game for this year's COE quota.

blazing through the scorching sun at the highway, i reached home safe and sound, and try to do some work but the pace was slow.

it seemed that the people from other parts of the world (ie: US, Australia and Middle East) and Malaysia do not respond to emails pretty quickly, guess i will wait till tomorrow to remind them that the deadline is this Friday people....

after the official work has ended at 6pm, i decided to bring my mom along to my sis' for chats and drinks...then, it was back sweet home for dinner and fooling around with the tv remote.

so much of tele-commuting, who came up with this term anyway?

ps: lancerlord and Ah9 -- the story of 2 saturdays ago will have to wait....pending clearance from the censor board ;)

Thursday, March 10, 2005


the agentX's theory of blog-thargy is as follows:

  • more time idling at work = more time of blog entries.
  • more time really working at work = zero time of blog entries...
so that's why, lah, that i have not been writing anything at all for the past few days.

so cowboy..u can say that i am disappearing, lah, but only for a while.

but then, actually got so many things to blog before i forget, i will list them here first lah...then cow-bey-cow-boo later... hehehe...

1) waking up on someone's bed last sunday morning, only to figure out that i had passed out on saturday night. with bruises on my armpit and right shin.
2) being involved (professionally) with a colleague from US offfice, who insisted that he is not american, but a texan.
3) having lots of free lunches and dinner parties with the client of the new project, and their guests from their overseas offices (all the different 13 nationalities) - the stereotypes, stupiditiy and the americanisation of agentX.
4) the government service notice to inform me of my IPPT next week.
5) and lastly, the crazy IT show which started today...and did not know why i had to go there twice...and, making me very tempted for this MP3 player just launched by SONY.

Friday, March 04, 2005

:: fire, fire burn so high...KNNCCB::

the sun is angry again, it is way too hot, even if it is indoors.

sitting by those big glass windows does not help either - other than preventing the glare, it is still useless to cut down the sunbeams.

in days like this, being hot...and FRIDAY, one can't help but wonder - "how to 'eat snake'' ...blame the weather for being the catalyst.

so today, jalan-jalan at the now-empty Marina Square (with exception of the food court and restaurants) for long (in term of hours) and filling lunch.

the view from the food court is superb (especially if you are a smoker as it has an outdoor 'facility' for you to smoke, with good ashtrays...thank you very much).

next, after much bleching and burping after lunch, its time to check out the swimming pool near the office @ suntec city, just in case if i decide to take a quick dip on other days like this...

well, it is a rather clinical swimming pool and tennis courts, but can't blame it either as who wants to 'recreate' near one's office.

ok ok, i promise no more gloating about how lazy i have been for the past few weeks, as from next week onwards, i will be damn least for a week.. ;)

Thursday, March 03, 2005

:: mind blank ::

didn't go to work, watched Oprah, reading a book.

and dozing off......zzzzz.

damn - i am getting lazy.

ps: but i am doing a good thing today, going to send my mom for her medical appointment later...see... filial guys still exist ;)

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

:: come on in..out of the rain::

one of my favourite rock song is "only happy when it rains" by garbage...

it rained pussy and doggie yesterday at the office...and its the first time this year...

and i loved it...