Monday, November 25, 2013

Umami, the 5th Taste!

In school, I can't recall ever learning about a 5th basic taste called umami, besides the sweet, sour, salty and bitter tastes. Given that 'umami' was only formally recognised as the 5th basic taste in 1985, I guess our text books would have to take a few more decades to record the updated information (I have yet to peruse the current text books to spot the updates).

It is interesting that from a very young age, most of us who've been little kitchen helpers of our moms would have heard her say that we need to add in enough meat to a soup or a stew in order for the dish to have a meaty sweetness or roundness taste to it. And all this while I never knew that that taste was the umami taste - difficult to put into words but all of us know what it is.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Remember the Nerdy Kid that Always Got Bullied?

I'm usually the peaceful type, comfortable with the status quo and trying to keep the peace in all situations. Perhaps a little like Issachar in Genesis 49:14 but not to the extreme of subjecting myself to forced labour just to keep peace? But some things just ruffle my feathers and I just don't know how to describe it but "pushing my buttons" comes very close to it. And doing the politically acceptable/right things just goes out the window! FIGHT... Round 1! Ding! Ding! Ding!

Tuesday, October 08, 2013

12th Sewing Project: Bridesmaid Dress Alteration

Recently I had the privilege of becoming a bridesmaid/jimui for the fourth time around. Oh wait, what was that old saying again? "Three times a bridesmaid never a bride"? Hahaha let's hope there's no truth in those words!

My friend had bought all the bridesmaids dresses in "free size" in Bangkok a while back. As expected, the dress was a little ill-fitting for myself - it wasn't unwearable but it was unflattering. I think I have had my fair share of being immortalised in friends' wedding photos as the frumpy bridesmaid!

Before, in the process and after!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Healthy Breakfast

It is Malaysia Day today and although I had arisen later than expected, I decided to start the healthy breakfast plan that I had. Since the little jolt into reality I had recently, I have resolved to try to change my lifestyle - more exercise and conscious meal selections.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Tale of the Sarong

After a day spent in sarong, I think this is what "she" has to say:

Having spent over a year in the cupboard, I was delighted to finally see daylight, dust shaken off and feeling warm skin next to mine. Hung up to air for a day, I was paired with my cousin, the kebaya top. We always went hand in hand when it came to matching a nice nyonya kebaya suit.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Bloody Week

Fear is something very strange. The silliest things can cause a strong giant to cower. Phobia can make the most rational person do the most unthinkable acts.

The root of fear is the unknown.

And one of my all time fears is being poked with a needle. It is a very minor procedure but for some reason I really really dread it. It's been so bad that until now, I still do not know my blood type.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

My Funeral and Rebirth

How time flies. I still feel like an infant in my spiritual walk, although it has been over 10 years since I was saved. Today marks an important milestone in my faith. My 'funeral' and rebirth. My public proclamation that I am a follower of Christ and am taking a step of obedience in His commands.

Today was my water baptism. Something that I'd been putting off for way too long. So many excuses. A couple of failed attempts. Many promptings from the Holy Spirit and through various individuals throughout the years. But the culmination of it all is today. Ready as I am.

Although I started out having companions in this journey, when the day approached - I was the only one taking the leap. I was a little disappointed at first, but in a way it was a good thing too. I truly know now that I took this step because I wanted to do so and not because it was just to jump on the bandwagon.

Despite the not too favourable timing of my baptism event, I am touched that the family and friends who mattered came out to support me (in person and through online streaming continents away). Although this is a personal journey, I believe having the people I care about witness my symbolic 'watery death' and rebirth would hold me accountable to the lifetime commitment I have chosen to take on.

Praise God for Year 2013! This year I have had much of Your blessings and presence in my life. Without Your gentle pushes, I would not have grown as much as I have in these two years. I am truly Yours now. I have decided to follow Jesus. I have decided to follow Jesus. No turning back. No turning back.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Le Tour de KL on Hari Raya

I've come to realise that as an urban dweller, I know very little about the nearest biggest city - Kuala Lumpur. When visitors ask for recommendations of places to visit, it's pretty sad that I myself have not been to most of the tourist spots in KL. In light of this shortcoming, we have endeavored to bring ourselves to self-enlightenment. Last year, we explored Batu Caves and Thean Hou Temple. This year, we were a little more kiasu - trying to pack in as many attractions as possible in a day but alas, the body wasn't willing!

Taman Tasik Perdana (Lake Garden) - The longest zebra crossing I've ever seen!

Sunday, August 04, 2013

Of Typos & Autocorrects

Typing fast is one thing. Typing accurately is another thing altogether. I think most of us can list typing as one of the integral processes encountered in our daily lives - be it for work, replying an SMS or chatting with a friend. Whether we type on a QWERTY chicklet keyboard or on a touch screen - the feel is different but the outcome is the same.

In my many years affair with typing, I've realised that I, myself am prone to several specific typo/autocorrect errors, which is really annoying but hilarious when I read them back. The top three that I always end up making are as below:-

 What it's meant to be
Selamat Datang

Selamat Dating [English: Happy dating]
Best regards
Best retards
Best reagents

Malausia [Chinese: monkey-sia]

Boohoohoo! ;)

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Insensitivity of Some Writers

While snooping on what's been hot news among my Fb friends, I stumbled across a shared blogpost in response to an article published a few days ago on The Star news website on "No benefit in being fat" (written by Tee Lin Say). With limited time and internet access during lunch hour, I Googled up the offending article and found it. Unfortunately I wasn't able to read past the first two paragraphs when I was called away.

About an hour ago, I tried to access the said article again and found that it had been replaced with a public apology by the writer! Shoot (I thought) I had missed it! In the space of a few hours, the article had been taken down. A screenshot of the current webpage is as below. More of the story after the jump.

Article replaced with public apology

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Suddenly Death

It is pretty curious. Over the past few weeks, the topic of death has suddenly kept reappearing in different forms.

Monday, July 08, 2013

Possessing a Company Secretary's Licence is a Strong Ass

Can't help the Grammar Nazi emerging. Was browsing through some job advertisement when I found this ad by a large local O&G company.
This is why we need proofreading
Lol! I guess in 3-4 years' time I will have a "strong ass"? Looking forward to that moment! *wink*

Sunday, June 30, 2013

sm Vs the Haze

I'm glad to say that my body held up pretty well against the haze this time around. I guess thanks to careful minimal exposure and lots of water and fish oil supplements too. The worst symptoms so far were allergies which made me sneeze and start a runny nose with a little itchy eyes. But no asthma or emergency clinic visits. Just as a reminder of how bad the haze was this year:

Comparison of a normal day and a hazy day - the hazy day photo doesn't do justice to the actual haze situation we experienced

Friday, June 28, 2013

KFC's Spicy Korean Burger Vs McD's Grand Spicy Chicken McDeluxe

I was home alone last weekend. So what did I think of doing? Make full use of my ta-pau-ings (takeaways) of course! I had started out intending to make my own meals, but when I couldn't find the pot to boil the eggs, I decided to drive out and get some fast food. And since, I had been mentally taking note to try out the KFC Spicy Korean Burger, I made a beeline to the nearest KFC (5 minutes drive). And so, this is how it looks:

KFC's Spicy Korean Burger

Monday, June 17, 2013


Today I'm breaking my rule of keeping things impersonal here.
Today I'm surprised by perceptions I've made. Humbled that my breaking point is seen as performance.
Things I thought were deserved were not up to par. Whereas things I thought I'd failed at were the highlights.
Surprise me more, my Lord.

Today for the umpteenth time, I'm coming back to the same conclusion. Like the fool on the hill.
It is me and not you. But it is killing me still.
Maybe some things in life, we need to give up on. And maybe this is it.
A door meant to be closed will eventually be closed?
Surprise me more, my Lord.

A promise I made early this year.
But progress has stagnated and accountability lies in a few days' time.
A mid year review. Another six months of second chance.
How can I make up? Forget the distraction and move into the right channel.
Open my eyes and heart to people after your heart.
Surprise me more, my Lord.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Repetitive behaviour and the time Time stood still

I had a late night last night - basically celebrating in my subconscious mind the completion of the 5th minutes of a string of 7 minutes that I had pending since late April. With an apparent lack of sleep, I jumped out of bed realising that I had snoozed my cellphone alarms one too many times. It was 7.20am! (My daily target wake up time was 7am)

I took a quick bath and got dressed, with a quick glance at my watch - I remember seeing that it was about 15 minutes past my ideal departure time (which was 8am). Cutting short all the routine dilly-dallyings, I hopped into my car and ignited the engine. The radio digital clock flashed on at "8:00" and I was slightly stumped. It couldn't be that my radio clock had slowed down by 15 minutes in such a short time? I'd readjusted the time just last week!

Trusty watch of mine, which has lasted for a good 10 years or so!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Chinese Rice Dumpling Festival

From an early age, I remember feasting on a pyramid shaped glutinous rice pillow with savory stuffing hidden within it. This happened once a year on a date which I can never remember. I was taught that the rice dumplings were called "ham yoke chung" and later learned from friends that it was also known as "bak chang".

Bak chang bought from a colleague

Thursday, June 06, 2013

The Sarcastic Bone in Me: Mr Driver #1

This morning while driving to work, I had noticed that the driver of car behind mine was over-zealously trying to "stick to my rear" in the traffic jam. He practically looked like he was sitting in my backseat, from the view of my rearview mirror. Every inch I made, he was very efficient in closing the gap.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

A Recruiter's Job is to Recruit and not to Repel

Judging a book by its cover may seem like a shallow thing to do, but in my brief experience as a job seeker, I find that the attitude of the HR personnel has impacted my perception of a company. Haughty recruiters at job fairs are a real turn-off.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Wearing a RM15 Blouse to a 7-Star Resort

Although my current job doesn't entail much glamour and is in fact very tedious, I must admit that my portfolio has allowed me to travel a little more than my other colleagues. Yes, day trips are tiring but they have been a whole new experience to me.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Between being a better person and being hypocritical

Sometimes you may meet someone or have a spiritual enlightenment, which makes you want to be a better person. And it is as true as day that for real change to occur, it has to come from one's self. No one can change another person if that person has not decided to change himself.

Monday, May 06, 2013

Friend and Non-Friend

For me, it's simple. If I know you and have reached a level of comfort where I can share a joke with you, I consider you as my friend. A friend, regardless of whether you are my colleague or a first time introduction. Again, I was surprised (I shouldn't have been, but nevertheless was caught off guard) by a not-too-recent occurrence.

Sunday, May 05, 2013

Why Indelible Ink

Today Malaysia votes! In my first job, such a day would have involved me posting up news updates from wherever I was throughout the day. But that was the past and I no longer have to do such work. Anyway, back to the reason why I decided to write this post - the idea behind why indelible ink is used in the 13th General Election. The reason? Because I've noticed that some people (namely some of my Facebook friends) do not understand the concept of using indelible ink.

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Election Fever

This year will be the second time around that I will be voting. Admittedly, the first time around I voted because I was exercising my right, and not because I truly believed that I was an instrument of change.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Evernote has got me!

I used to pour out a lot of what I felt on this blog. But as I grew older, I realised that that was pretty juvenile and dangerous, as this is a public domain free for anyone to Google it up.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Volcano pimples

In the past 2 weeks, I had on my face an epidemic of huge "volcano" pimples which kept popping up one after another. And although it's gross to be explaining it in detail, it is a must to paint the impact in your mind (as the reader).

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Out From The Cave Comes A Polka-dotted Human

The weekend away in Ipoh has come and gone with me chalking up a couple of first-time experiences. And although the adventure ended with me having an allergy shot in the butt, I really did enjoy this trip.

Friday, February 08, 2013

Happy Lunar New Year 2013!

I used to be able to find my way around Photoshop but tonight, I had to Google for the simplest things like adding a drop shadow! However, I am pretty happy with the outcome - my CNY e-card (which is based on the physical cards I had designed and handmade for some family members and friends. The cards were posted via snailmail a little late, so I don't think all of them have reached their intended destinations yet.

Anyway, have a blessed Lunar New Year 2013!

Sunday, February 03, 2013

The Case of the Disappearing Files

So Friday was a relaxing day where many were on leave, including the boss. Although the finance head in one of our business units did give me a face to face friendly warning about the stamping duty late penalty incurred (Note to self: stamping must be done within 30 days form the date of the instrument, not 1 month). It's funny how people expect me to recognise them when I hardly ever (or haven't even) meet them. My brain will have to quickly sift through the clues I could use for recognition, e.g. lanyard, topic of discussion, name, voice... Anyway, this is not what this post is about.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Annual Post

So another year... and here's just to continue with the tradition of a birthday post (although it's a few days late).

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Fishing Trip!

Today I went for my first fishing trip! Ok, technically I have experienced "candat sotong" (squid fishing... squiding??) during my Redang Island trip last year.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Resignation Letters & "Yours faithfully"?

I was going through a stack of resignation letters when suddenly I realised that our standard format of resignation letters were signed off by a "Yours faithfully".

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Forever Young in Malaysia

Living in Malaysia has its benefits. Besides having great weather and a decent standard of living (till the point where the Germans are sending their old folks to retire here), we can always rejoice that we, as Malaysians, can feel like a young kid in perpetuity.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Strongest Matter in the World

Sometimes the physical can be deceiving. What appears to be strong may actually be weak.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Education From Korean Dramas

Look what I found sitting in my drafts for more than a year (or two)! This post was initiated during the days when I actually had time to stream K-dramas online after work. Ah, what awesome times those days were! To be able to do things at my whim and fancy... stay up late with little consequences... Oh well, let me just continue what I started a long time ago then (I had even left links in my draft for future reference to aid in the composition!):-

Friday, January 11, 2013

Whose fault is it?

It's a case of whodunit. We work as different teams towards one goal. The goal is achieved but one of the upper echelons start questioning where did the directive to initiate the project had come from. So the paper trail starts. Tracking back emails and who said what and when. Being one who likes writing, most of my emails are pretty clearly spelled out or intentionally vague. And with a die-hard habit from the past, I do keep all my emails and re-read them occasionally or as when needed.

Lesson learned: always keep your black & whites in order.