Thursday, July 24, 2008

The one about the problem with Friendster

lately (a couple of weeks back till now), i've been experiencing problems logging into friendster. i'm not sure whether its just the computers in my house or other people have also been having this same problem too... funny thing is that sometimes i'm able to login but the next time its back to the same problem... which is, when you click on login (after entering username and password) the home page loads back like no info was entered... i've e-mailed a complain where they gave a speedy response (within 24 hrs) with some pointers from their faq section and other troubleshooting options. unfortunately, their recommendations did not work and i'm just too lazy to complain again. so i'll just have to live without friendster i guess (which i've already been doing for quite a while since facebook emerged).

one puzzling thing is that this login issue seem to only occur in my house... on both my laptop n imac... haven't tried it on my bro's computers yet though. i wonder whether it could have been caused by streamyx or firefox... well, que sera sera... whatever will be will be...

Thursday, July 17, 2008

My dog is an archaeologist

ah mutt zackaria indeed is a talented archaeologist. everyday he will take his chicken drumstick or thigh apart and spread the bones all over the door mat or on whatever surfaces he can secure. he evenly spaces out the pieces of fractured bones and meat, taking care that none are piled on top of each other. he then guards his works with a vengeance, growling ferociously (as much as possible, since he really is a very small dog) and snaps madly at anyone who dares to disturb his masterpiece! many have tried to tame the vicious animal instincts in him (and also to clean up the mess he's created) but have came back with a bitten hand or finger. the only way to evade his wrathful bites is by way of trickery, using baits such as other foods or letting him roam the garden outside.

the only consolation to this matter is that after he bites you, he immediately feels apologetic for his rash actions and starts offering an olive branch by snuggling up to you. so it is evident that the dog does have some degree of conscience. unfortunately i have not been able to graphically document his best works but below is one of his poorer jobs.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

My trip to Sarawak

i'm surprised my laptop still works fine! a couple of days before leaving for sarawak, mum spilled half a cup of ice-cold water on my laptop while i was starting it up (strangely, at that time i was experiencing trouble starting it and had to use force shutdown 3 times)... some water entered the keyboard area, ventilation slits and projector port. i immediately shut off the computer, wiped off as much water as i could and used a hair dryer to dry the keyboard. i remembered reading somewhere that you should not use a computer for a few days to let it completely dry off if a spillage occurred. so this is the first time i'm trying out my laptop after the water incident (approximately 5 days ago) and so far, so good (i've been using it for already more than 5 hours straight). thank God!!!

so, now on to my commentaries of my trip to Kuching, Sarawak. nisha and i booked an early flight to kuching on friday morning... our first time stepping on the soil of Borneo island. we took a taxi (our taxi driver spoke english, so different from KL, but drove a little too reckless for my comfort) to our lodging, Singgahsana Lodge in kuching city. i was looking out for signs that we had entered the city when i realized that we were already in the city! our lodgings were nice, homey and most importantly, clean! since we arrived way earlier than the check-in time, we decided to take a walk around. we discovered a nearby parkson having the grand sale on and since our tummies were starting to rumble, we ate at sugar bun (i read somewhere that it was quite big in east malaysia, or at least in sarawak). unfortunately for us the food wasn't that great. we then bought ourselves our drinking water rations from giant.

the purpose of our trip to kuching was to catch the 11th rainforest world music festival (RWMF) in the sarawak cultural village. i must say that the whole event appeared to be very much commercialized... but i guess in order to host such a big event, you need to sell out abit... and also thanks to the massive cut in budget by the government! initially (i didn't know about the budget issue then), i was thinking "why on earth are there HSBC buntings in the middle of the jungle? (our bus ride passed through secluded jungle-like areas on the way to the sarawak cultural village) then when we arrived, i found out why... because they were one of the major sponsors! together with heineken, mas, shell, some drinking water company and i can't recall the rest.

overall, between the three nights the performances were good (but not very 'world music'-ish to me). the up tempo of the modern rock bands rendered the more traditional performances paler in comparison. i liked the performances of new rope string band (uk), akasha (malaysia), kasai masai (congo/uk), oikyataan (india), fadomorse (portugal) and sheldon blackman & the love circle (trinidad & tobago). the others were also good but perhaps not my cup of tea. the ross daly quartet (greece) and adel salameh (palestine) performances were unique and rich in culture. ooh, i really enjoyed the new rope string band... they were so cute and funny with their vocal harmony and violin+accordion act! fadomorse had a dynamic front man, great stage presence!

unfortunately, 2 out of the 3 nights rained... the first and last nights... so the mosh pit became some mud box where hundreds of people were having mud fights! of course nisha and i didn't venture into that region... we value our shoes more than having a stranger rub mud on our faces.

we bumped into a couple of people we knew and also spotted some local and regional "celebrities" around the cultural village... i kept bumping into a certain aiesecer who was a faci in one of the leadership seminars i attended while in university... we also met up with vikki and her sarawakian friend on the last night... they'd just finished their exams... we camped out on the small hill between the two stages... alternating our attention between the two whenever the stage lights were turned on on either. when it started raining, we had to run for cover, but we returned to the edge of the mosh pit when the rain dwindled to a drizzle. we had a blast of a time on the last night... it's really true that "the more the merrier".

besides RWMF 2008, we walked around kuching town, buying souvenirs and trying out a certain "spicy noodle" in a restaurant recommended by JH (who unfortunately was posted to a village that weekend)... it was good! hehe... we took a "sampan" ride across the river to try find Fort Margherita... but little did we know that the place was closed up (we found this out on the morning of our departure from vikki's sarawakian friend... su). during our "sampan" ride back, there were these two women who were busy posing for photos... then one lady decided to transfer herself to the other side and nearly tipped the boat! the boatman and some local men admonished the ladies and shook their heads... luckily we reached the harbourfront dry and in one piece... took a couple of pictures among the historical buildings and monuments... we visited the chinese civilisation museum too... and there was this man who was practically shouting into his handphone and bouncing on the creaking floorboards of the museum... effectively rattling the displays and causing a raucous in the normally quiet museum...

the trip was good... only thing was that i wished we'd had more time to go eco-sightseeing and see more of the natural side of sarawak. i guess i'll just have to wait for another time to fulfill this wish.

when we reached kl, getting back to shah alam was a problem. we'd arrived right smack in the middle of rush hour... workers were rushing back home and we were wielding our gigantic luggage... at first, our plan was to take the ktm komuter straight back to shah alam. but we could not get onto the train, even after 2 trains had come and gone... we witnessed a pregnant lady faint and fall onto the tracks and a couple of guys rushed down and carried her to safety before any train arrived... i think she must have had a bout of fits or something...

anyway, since we couldn't board the ktm komuter, i suggested we take putraline to kelana jaya where my mum could pick us up. and so we did... the lrt wasn't that packed and we had no problem travelling back to kelana jaya. although we wasted our fare for the ktm komuter... but the point is that we arrived safely and comfortably back in shah alam. and so ended our trip to kuching!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

My pains

today's post is going to sound like a complaining old hag.

a few posts ago, i mentioned about a pain in my back (which i noticed after doing the whole washing clothes routine thing...). i don't know whether it was the exacerbation from that day or it was from a new unknown injury, but my back pains were very obvious on monday this week when i met up with BY to do our banking. on sunday the pains came in spasms (like 'now you feel it, now you don't!') and i thought maybe they were caused by my bad posture or something. on monday, stabbing pains went up my spine whenever i took a right step (especially when walking on the tar road). i felt like there was some friction between bones near the pelvic bone and lower vertebrae. being a true Wong (at least in this branch of family la) i started thinking of the worst... "what if it was slip disc (like my course mate has)?"... but BY thinks it's because i wore high heals the whole day from morning to night a week before... it could be... plus the bending and squatting while doing my laundry... could have added salt to the wound...

it's weird... first i started experiencing noticeable hair loss (my scalp's getting more visible), then eczema induced by stress, then heart palpitations (or whatever that's causing me to wake up in the hot afternoon with a slight tremble in my hands and a feeling like there's a mild earthquake occurring) and now these back pains. am i really aging that fast? and the funny thing is that it started when i was in form 6... whereas the eczema started when i was working on YV'07 (the concert and all!) and reoccurred when i was writing my thesis and preparing for my viva... thus, it is confirmed to be stress related! my so-called 'heart palpitations' started when i was staying in hostel but its occurrence was very much reduced when i moved back home... so perhaps it was partly caused by me feeling lonely? back pains? i don't know... maybe too much sour foods? i remember eating quite a lot of "kai choy tong" (sour spicy soup prepared with left over meat boiled with mustard plant foliage and tamarind... some people add distilled vinegar to accentuate the sourness) lately...

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

I think I'm easily brain-washed

firstly (before i forget), i've finally modified my original planned layout so that my blog doesn't look half-baked like before (although admittedly it hasn't baked to perfection yet!). i think it doesn't look that bad now, just a broken left column and some misaligned text. however i noticed that on the imac, the menu (left column) consist of serif type... which i don't particularly like on an electronic medium. i can't recall how it was on a windows pc. anyway, that's a minor problem and i shall work on it when i remember to.

lately, i've been job hunting (mostly online) and have visited a number of FMCG company websites. some of the more established organizations offer online applications where you need to login and fill out electronic forms, upload your resume, answer a string of questions so they can gauge your personality or analytical skills and finally get you to sign a legal agreement about the authenticity of the information you provided and allowing them to keep your info in their database, authorize them to check out your criminal records etc... i find these procedures tedious (but sometimes quite interesting too) as i can take up to half a day to complete one application (also thanks to streamyx, which allows me to enter the same data multiple times due to connection failure). however before all these application processes, there is the part where you read about the job description and what you'd be able to learn from the job... when i read that part (be it on the company's website or on jobstreet or jobsDB etc.), sometimes i feel so motivated and excited to start working on the job... that i forget that i haven't even started applying for it... i know this sounds so 'pathetic-jobless-slash-unemployed-person'-ish and i hope that this blog's poor readership will mean that this other side of me would not be known to many (*mockingly holding right index finger to lips whilst pronouncing "Shhhh!"*)

anyway, so here's how the post title came about... i think i'm easily brain-washed! feed me a little bit of inspirational mumbo jumbo fancy pantsy writing and i'm impressed! strangely, i've never really caught on to reading motivational books and what nots... i have always thought i'd never benefit from them because whenever i read a snippet, it's just plain common sense! i find that nothing is new or intriguing for me... so back to the topic of me being easily brain-washed... this shows the power of good writing or rather the clever use/selection of words!!! i wish that i could write that well (i don't mean job ads!) to inspire people to feel emotions they weren't planning to feel or to change their outlook on a certain topic...

just like when i was reading 'a child called it' by dave pelzer or falling leaves by adeline yen mah, it made me shed many tears... the choice of words used really plays an important role in influencing the reader's reading experience... not just the idea behind the words.

i just finished reading anderson cooper's 'dispatches from the edge'... it's a good read, sad but it's reality... war, famine, natural disasters...