Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Color me ... restrained?

H/T Dawn for pointing out this Color Quiz.

I took it twice: the first one seemed relatively on target, but I also felt I'd thought too hard about my choices, so i went ahead and took the test again while giving it almost no thought.

Here are the results:
Existing Situation:
1. Volatile and outgoing. Needs to feel that events are developing along desired lines, otherwise irritation can lead to changeability or superficial activities.

2. Is seeking a solution to existing problems or anxieties, but is liable to find it difficult to decide on a right course to follow.


Stress Sources:
1. An existing situation or relationship is unsatisfactory, but she feels unable to change it to bring about the sense of belonging which she needs. Unwilling to expose her vulnerability, she therefore continues to resist this state of affairs, but feels dependent on the attachment. This not only depresses her. but makes her irritable and impatient, producing considerable restlessness and the urge to get away from the situation, either actually or, at least, mentally. Ability to concentrate may suffer.

2. Delights in the tasteful, the gracious, and the sensitive, but maintains her attitude of critical appraisal and refuses to be swept off her feet unless genuineness and integrity can be absolutely vouched for. Therefore keeps a strict and watchful control on her emotional relationships as she must know exactly where she stands. Demands complete sincerity as a protection against her own tendency to be too trusting.


Restrained Characteristics:
1. Circumstances are forcing her to compromise, to restrain her demands and hopes, and to forgo for the time being some of the things she wants. Egocentric and therefore quick to take offense. Sensitive and sentimental, but conceals this from all except those very close to her. Able to achieve satisfaction through sexual activity.

2. Feels she is receiving less than her share, but that she will have to conform and make the best of her situation. Feels cut off and unhappy because of the difficulty in achieving the essential degree of cooperation and harmony which she desires. Feels that things stand in her way, that circumstances are forcing her to compromise and forgo some pleasures for the time being.


Desired Objective:
1. Unwilling to participate and wishes to avoid all forms of stimulation. Has had to put up with too much of a tiring or exhausting nature and now desires protection and noninvolvement

2. Seeks freedom from problems and a secure state of physical ease in which to relax and recover.


Actual Problem:
1. Anxiety and restless dissatisfaction, either with circumstances or with unfulfilled emotional requirements, have produced tension and stress. Her attempt to escape from these consists of creating at least an outward semblance of peace by refusing to allow herself to be involved.

2. Wishes to safeguard herself against criticism and to entrench herself in a stable and secure position; but is herself inclined to be critical of others and difficult to please.


I think it's interesting that both times the "Restrained Characteristics" mention circumstances forcing me to compromise, restrain and forgo some things for the time being. The way it's worded might make it seem like a bad thing, but it's not: it's just a necessary consequence to the path I've chosen to take... After all, I *am* still very much in limbo for a variety of reasons: Kosh and I still have no idea where we'll be at this time next year. Once that question is answered, I should be able to un-restrain myself ;-)

And when that happens... watch out world! LOL! :-)

p/s .. I am posting this at a few minutes past 12 midnight... so please allow me to wish those who mark it, a
HAPPY SAMHAIN!

Friday, October 27, 2006

Fillers: WWTD & a tiger jigsaw puzzle

Filler #1: A golf-related chuckle found in my email inbox some time ago:
A couple was on their honeymoon, lying in bed, about ready to consummate their marriage, when the new bride says to the husband, "I have a confession to make, I'm not a virgin."

The husband replies, "That's no big thing in this day and age."

The wife continues, "Yeah, I've been with one guy."

"Oh yeah? Who was the guy?"

"Tiger Woods."

"Tiger Woods, the golfer?"

"Yeah."

"Well, he's rich, famous and handsome. I can see why you went to bed with him."

The husband and wife then make passionate love.

When they are done, the husband gets up and walks to the telephone.

"What are you doing?" asks the wife.

The husband says, "I'm hungry, I was going to call room service and get something to eat."

"Tiger wouldn't do that."

"Oh yeah? What would Tiger do?"

"He'd come back to bed and do it a second time."

The husband puts down the phone and goes back to bed to make love a second time.

When they finish, he gets up and goes over to the phone. "Now what are you doing?" she asks.

The husband says, "I'm still hungry so I was going to get room service to get something to eat."

"Tiger wouldn't do that."

"Oh yeah? What would Tiger do?"

"He'd come back to bed and do it again."

The guy slams down the phone, goes back to bed, and makes love one more time.

When they finish he's tired and beat. He drags himself over to the phone and starts to dial.

The wife asks, "Are you calling room service?"

"No! I'm calling Tiger Woods, to find out what the par is for this damn hole."
{as much as I am NOT a golf fan, I sooo totally love this joke, LMAOooooOOoooOOoo!!}


next...

Filler #2: a great blonde joke found today at TNChick's
A blonde calls her boyfriend and says, "Please come over here and help me. I have a killer jigsaw puzzle, and I can’t figure out how to get it started."

"What is it supposed to be when it’s finished?"

"According to the picture on the box, it’s a tiger."

Her boyfriend decides to go over and help with the puzzle. She lets him in and shows him where she has the puzzle spread all over the table. He studies the pieces for a moment, then looks at the box, then turns to her and says..

"First of all, no matter what we do, we’re not going to be able to assemble these pieces into anything resembling a tiger."

He takes her hand and says, "Second, I want you to relax. Let’s have a nice cup of tea."

Then he sighed, "And now let’s put all the Frosted Flakes back in the box."
Did you see that one coming? Teeheeheeeeee!!

Don't feel like blogging anything "real" today... so have a grrrrrrrrrrrrrreat weekend, y'all!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

shingle bells, shingle bells...

    A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away...

    ... my brother and maternal grandmother were exposed to a chicken pox carrier at the same time; they both presented with symptoms that Christmastime: my brother proceeded to get better over the following few weeks, while my grandmother has been plagued with shingles [or, perhaps "postherpetic neuralgia" is more correct] ever since.

    [Same virus, but different effect on its victim, depending on the victim's age.]

    Two weeks later, the day before my flight back to Malaysia, those pesky spots appeared on *my* body! I took the flight back anyway, and hoped I didn't spread it to anyone on the plane :p

    My bout of chicken pox was very very very mild: nothing on my face; most of the spots were on my torso. But there weren't THAT many spots. Sure, they itched, but I had it easy. So mild, in fact, was my late [i was maybe 16 y.o.] encounter with this childhood disease that I have always wondered if I really did build immunity to it. After all, I wouldn't want to be exposed to the virus when I'm old & grey, and end up getting shingles [or worse, the postherpetic neuralgia like my g'ma!] in my old age...
That's the story, as I knew it.

Until yesterday.

Yesterday on Yahoo!News i saw something about a vaccine for shingles now being recommended for Amrericans over 60 y.o. What I read has turned my assumptions upside down about the behaviour of the varicella zoster virus [and how we got the chicken pox in Switzerland].

According to wikipedia, shingles is caused by REACTIVATION of the virus that had been dormant in the patient, perhaps even for decades. In fact, according to that Yahoo!News article, about 15 percent to 30 percent of people infected with the chicken pox virus develop shingles later in life.

Yikes!

It seems that after we are hit with chicken pox when young, our body eliminates the virus from the system *BUT* the virus *also* hibernates for decades in nerve cells around the spine. Generally, the immune system will supress reactivation of the virus... but in the elderly, this supression might fail because the body's immune system does weaken with age.

And since the reactivated chicken pox manifesting as shingles is as easily transmittable as the regular chicken pox ... and since shingles presents first as pain before the blisters emerge... perhaps it was my g'ma who infected my brother with the chicken pox that fateful xmas?

Not that I'm assigning blame, don't get me wrong! I just have always been curious as to "how it all started"... and since my brother and g'ma {as far as I know} couldn't recall having interacted with a chicken pox person 2 weeks before they got those blisters... and based on the fact one doesn't "catch" shingles per se...

I am now mentally revising the chicken pox tale to reflect the probability that my g'ma was the root cause.

I am also revising my concern about "catching" shingles when older: I should instead be concerned about those dang dormant viruses getting reactivated somehow.. but about the only thing I *can* do to address that is to keep in good health and do what I can to have a strong immune system as I get older.

yay!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

some signs... but pointing to what?

Sign #1:
So yesterday I wrote a pretty toxic post about Aidil Fitri, with full intentions to post it once ready. However, once it was ready [over an hour after starting to type...], something made me "ctrl-a ctrl-c" before hitting publish... and whaddaya know, Blogger was down and everything I'd typed would have been totally lost.

So I pasted that toxicity into a Word file. But by the time I was up and about this morning, I'd figured out a better, less toxic way to say what I'd spewed yesterday. And by the time I was surfing around the net this morning, I figured I was better off not posting what I'd written anyway, for so many reasons.

So instead, I'll just link you to my post of TWO YEARS AGO that raises some of the same things I'd typed, minus the depth, flashbacks and much of the toxicity.

And for those to whom Aidil Fitri actually *means* something beyond the superficial, please allow me to wish you and yours:

SELAMAT AIDIL FITRI


Disagree that this is a "sign"? You're entitled to your opinion, of course - I just think that I was "saved" from posting something that I knew was actually too truthful and too blunt to be consumed by anyone who actually knows me, especially those who know me from school / work / Malaysian side of my family.

Intrigued? Wanna know what I actually wrote?? Too bad :-)


Sign #2:
I've mentioned that I've started reading books again. When I entered the library with the intention of checking out one or two tomes for the first time, I did not have any specific books in mind. I just browsed the shelves, running my eyes over the books but not really reading the titles or anything... then my eye stopped on Yann Martel's Life of Pi.

I remembered that I'd wanted to read this for the longest time already, but from reading the cover I wasn't confident that it was something worth the cost of the book [in Malaysia I didn't have a library to frequent.. if I wanted to read a book, I had to buy it!]. But hey, it was available for check-out, so I grabbed it and another book, checked them out, and headed back, where I proceeded to read the other book first.

Then came my meditative weekly yoga class in town. Again, it was just me and the "instructor" [let's call him Nick], who is very keen to give me what are essentially advanced tutorials because of my affinity for the system [for lack of a better word]. So that day, he overdid it. Sure, the system originates from India, and yes, the founder might draw on personae and characters more familiar to the Indian collective... but to then teach mantras in Indian [i assume it is in Hindi, actually, but don't actually know-know],,, and to "call on" characters predominantly from Indian myths and lore that I totally don't relate to,,, ,,, heck, that's part of my problem with how religion is taught, where you memorise sounds but don't really know what they mean.

Anyways - so I questioned the validity of drawing mainly on the Indian pantheon, and poor Nick had to go through a LOT of explanations to appease me. An important thing to understand was that the mantras were essentially calling on the "properties/ characteristics" associated with the specified "deity"/"character"/persona, and not on the deity/character/persona itself. For example, calling on Ganesha [considered the master of intellect and wisdom] when focussing on the bottom-most chakra, which, surprise surprise, is associated with [innocence and] wisdom.
    I found it amusing that all these associations were Indian in nature, except for "Shri Mary Jesus" [in association with chakra dealing with forgiveness - which makes sense except that technically it was Jesus, more than his mother, who is associated with that character, right?]

    I also questioned where someone like the Prophet Mohammed would be: so he's lumped together with 9 other gurus [Nick couldn't remember who most of the others were], associated with the self-mastery chakra. These gurus may have had different messages, but they all dealt with different aspects of life and essentially preached self-mastery. Interestingly, Islam istelf can be associated with the chakra located at the throat which deals with charisma, collective communication and can be blocked due to "guilt".
Anyways - Nick conceeded that mantras weren't set in stone or anything. In fact, I could substitute any person/character I wanted into the mantra, if I had anyone/anything in mind that had qualities associated with the various chakras. The challenge for me was that I didn't really have any. So while I would be more than fine continuing as I have using English and addressing the chakras' qualities directly, it certainly wouldn't hurt for me to educate myself on the Indian pantheon of deities, nor to brush up on past "messengers" and their "messages". After all, it's not much use saying "all religions have the right idea" when I don't actually know what these religions are saying, eh? [note, when i say religion i am not limiting myself to those "of The Book", k?]

Okay, so how does this tie in with Life of Pi?

Well, I started reading it the day after the yoga session,,, and was amazed to find that the book is set initially in India, and the character is a Hindu so you get a flavour of that perspective... then he also becomes a Christian, and later a [Sufi] Muslim; he essentially subscribes to different attributes of the different religions and sees no conflict in believing in and practicing all three.

The "sign"? It just seemed to resonate with the message from the day before of understanding the lessons of different religions.


Sign #3:
On my most recent trip to the library, I picked up Christopher Moore's Fluke: Or, I Know Why the Winged Whale Sings: again, it wasn't something I'd set out to borrow, but I'd noticed the long/unusual title on maybe Life of Pi's amazon page, so I recognised the title when skimming the shelves that day.

Started reading it yesterday - didn't get too far, but far enough to already appreciate the use of a hydrophone, and that the whales' tails/flukes are used as identifiers.

And last night, after dinner, refusing to watch more Family Guy / American Dad tapes due to overdoes/overload, I ended up watching some PBS.

A show about whales. and flukes. and hydrophones. [and lots of other things too, of course! would have been a lame show otherwise].

That was kinda cool :-)

More resonance of sorts ;-)

= = = =

So, the title of this post is "some signs... but pointing to what?"

I'd like to think of the above as indications of a greater collective uniting all-pervasive force out there... something that interacts with and impacts us in ways we don't even realise. Yes, even through apparently random book choices in your local library ;-)

Cheers!

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Holy Ramadhan, Batman!

For the longest time, I have not been paying attention to the news too much.

Sure, I have had the tv on during the news in the afternoons, but that doesn't mean i actually listen too much to what's going on. After all, the U.S. news is *so* u.s.-centric I need to hunt for the BBC news on one of the PBS channels to get a better feel for what's going on "out there"

But a few minutes ago, this headline on the Yahoo! main page caught my eye:
Attacks kill 44 in Iraq as Ramadan ends
Reading this, so many things that are SO WRONG jumped out at me.

Did you know that October has been the deadliest month in terms of U.S. deaths in the past two years? Does this have anything to do with it being Ramadhan? Perhaps these misguided "insurgents" think they are getting bonus points for killing during this holy month?

But you know what? [Not that I'm condoning attacks on U.S. troops, but...] these attacks are not *just* against U.S. troops: on Sunday alone, 44 Iraqis were killed; it is estimated that at least 100 Iraqis are now killed daily. I'm assuming that in general, Iraqi = Muslim [whether Shiite or Sunni, doesn't matter to me. Yeah so sue me.]. I know, I know, they've been killing each other for a long time, and while some would argue that the U.S. presence there is either helping or exacerbating the situation,,, but I'm still reeling from the fact that this is Ramadhan and these murders are not just going on as usual, but they seem to be stepping up the effort! Again - is it because of some misguided belief that they are betting bonus points for killing "enemies" of "their" version of Islam??

A friend of mine made the statement recently that she feels safe during Ramadhan because she has been raised to believe that devils/demons are "... tied up in hell for the entire month. This means that if we're engaged in any bad behaviour or other negative attitude/actions we can't blame it on the devil; it's totally us. There's no devil whispering at your left ear telling you to do things: it's 100% your call."

So, if you believe in the above,,, how would you explain this increase in violence and murder during this supposedly holiest of holy months????

I shudder at any/all answers that pop into my head.

And - icing on the cake: "The country's majority Shiites begin the three-day festival Tuesday or Wednesday, depending on which senior cleric they follow." OMG! Even within one country, and within one "sect" within that one country, they can't even agree on something as simple as the start of a new lunar month!!

I don't know what else to do except just roll my eyes, because i have no confidence that things are ever going to improve.

= = = = =

On a related note:
HAPPY DEEPAVALI / DIVALI
to all who celebrate this festival
of
light over darkness,
of
good over evil

[unfortunately, that's not quite happening this year,
Let's try again next year, ya?]

Friday, October 20, 2006

I didn't mean to, but ...

[very much related to this previous post]

So Mr Waiter Rant was on the receiving end of some "judgement" wrt his job recently.

Many years ago, I think I did the same thing - tho I really didn't mean to!!

While waiting for my SPM results [end 1989 & early 1990], I worked for a while at Toys R Us,,, and again one summer [1992?] just to keep me occupied. So I knew a few of the managers and all; one of them was this lady - strict yet friendly, and I suppose my "fave" of them all.

Fast forward to maybe 2002 - I and my then-bf and another couple were killing time in Subang Parade, walking past the TRU store there, when I saw a familiar face! So I walked up to her and:

    Me: Hi S___, remember me?

    S: Oh Hiii! Lynne right? How are you?

    Me: I'm doing good. Workin at [xxx] now, since 1995. You're still here though?

    Me [to myself] : omg, that sounds so bad! I saw her face change too, oh noooooo!

    S: Yes, still here...

    [awkward pause]

    Me & S: Well, great to see you again, blah blah blah, bye!

I gotta say, the "you're still here?" was a true expression of my surprise at her still being "just" a manager at the store, over 10 years after I last saw her. Of course, I have no idea about the pay / advancement prospects of these managers, so maybe she *had* moved up but it didn't seem so to an ignorant observer like me. I suppose the surprise in my voice didn't help matters: by the change in her face it looked like she thought I was judging her, and she had been found lacking. So then *i* was tongue-tied at the social trip-up, while *she* was probably a mixture of emotions herself - just hopefully nowhere near as angry as what was Ranted by the Waiter!

*i* knew I was not judging her, but I knew it certainly didn't come out that way...

So this incident is one of many over the years that have "trained" me to stop and think before I speak [or write]. I'm not always successful, that's for sure... but every phrase held back and re-thought prior to being uttered [or hitting "send"] is a step in the right direction.

Perhaps these help counter/balance the words that have instantaneously bubbled up in response to people/situations that trigger my triggers??

Thursday, October 19, 2006

The future's so invisible, I gotta wear ... ?

From the headline "Scientists create cloak of invisibility" one would think we are close to getting cloaking technology like that of a Romulan Bird of Prey, or Harry Potter's invisibility cloak... [yahoo news article here]

Of course, in reality, we are nowhere near there yet: gotta love how headlines shout out amazing breakthroughs, when in reality what they are trumpeting is extrapolation from very very basic and preliminary results.

To remind us of basic physics that we've thankfully forgotten from high school / college days: An object is visible to the naked eye when light waves that hit the object are scattered, and some of these waves are reflected back to the eye.

Similarly, equipment that detect things like microwaves and x-rays would be able to "see" waves scattered by the object, even if we can't actually see it with the naked eye. Radar and night-vision goggles pop into my head as examples.

Anyways - so you wanna render something invisible? Don't let it bounce back *any* waves that hit it. This can be achieved by making the object too small to be hit by waves [stealth technology]; making the object absorb the waves [wouldn't that cast a "shadow" though?]; or, in this particular case, making the object deflect the waves around it, like water flowing around a smooth rock in a stream.

So this new breakthrough? The "cloak" made the object ALMOST invisible.
To microwaves.
"Adapting the concept to visible light is good, but from an engineering point of view it is very challenging." Harrrumph!

But I do like the "... speculative application ... 'cloaking' acoustic waves, so as to shield a region from vibration or seismic activity".

HOWEVER... the pseudo conspiracy theorist in me is jumping up and down in concern, wondering if "bugs" have been ironed out since the Philadelphia Experiment... after all, that was an experiment to bend light waves around a ship to render it invisible... an experiment that supposedly went totally awry... of course the entire tale is entirely suspect because a main part of the tale is based on testimony of someone who has since been debunked as a fake...

... so how much of the tale is true?

Did such an experiment actually occur?

With so many people entrenched in their own views, it's doubtful that we'd recognise the truth if it came up and bit us on the nose, eh?

cat got your tongue?

Got this from SocialApathy:


Reminds me very much of:
It is better to keep silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt

While this quote has been attributed to so many people including Abe Lincoln and Confucius, even a mysterious Silvan Engel, it probably has its roots in Proverbs 17:28:
"Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding."


Related would be the admonishment of
if you don't have anything nice to say, then don't say anything!


Of course, the niat, or intention, behind saying "not nice" things needs to be taken into consideration. We've all received this email about Socrates' Triple Filter of Gossip, have we not?
In ancient Greece (469-399 BC) Socrates was well known for his wisdom. One day the great philosopher came upon an acquaintance, who said excitedly, “Socrates, do you know what I just heard about one of your students?”

“Wait a moment,” Socrates replied, “before telling me anything I’d like you to pass a little test. It’s called the Triple Filter Test.”

“Triple Filter?”

“That’s right,” Socrates continued, “Before you talk to me about my student, it might be a good idea to take a moment and filter what you are going to say. The first filter is TRUTH. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about to tell me is true?”

“No,” the man said,” actually I just heard about it and …”

“All right,” said Socrates” So you don’t really know if it is true or not. Now let us try the second filter, GOODNESS. Is what you are about to tell me about my student something good?”

“No,” the man said, “on the contrary …”

“So,” Socrates continued, “you want to tell me something bad about him, but you are not certain it is true. You may still pass the test though, because there’s one filter left: the filter of USEFULNESS.

“Is what you want to tell me about my student going to be useful to me?”

“No, not really.”

“Well, “concluded Socrates “If what you want to tell me is neither true nor good nor even useful, why tell it to me at all?”

This is why Socrates was a great philosopher and held in such high esteem. It also explains why he never found out that Plato was sleeping with his wife.
[I contend that the information would indeed have been "useful" to Socrates, but what the heck, the joke needs its punchline eh?]

What's my point? None, really - not yet, anyway :-)

But let me take this opportunity to highlight my guest reviews at Kev's Fun With Dead Trees! Whoohooo! :-) Hope to be a regular contributor, now that I've finally gotten some momentum :-)

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Movie Meanderings

So last night Kosh and I watched Back to the Future on DVD.

While this movie [and the trilogy] is one of my faves [I just love how you have the same story told in 3 different eras, and how they all fit together], I actually haven't watched them that often - in fact, the 3-movie DVD set Kosh had gotten for me in 2004 had been watched just the once, until now.

So anyway... we were watching... and early on MJF auditions for the band, playing a Huey Lewis & the News song [The Power of Love, I think]... u remember that scene?

Remember the nerdy audition judge who totally didn't appreciate MJF's music, and very quickly cut his audition short?

That was Huey Lewis!

I never noticed that, till last night.

What an awesome cameo!!

But Kosh wasn't convinced, despite numerous "rewinds" to study the face [you gotta look BEYOND those glasses!], so we imdb'd Huey Lewis... and haahahahaaaa EYE WAS RIGHT!! see here, look for Actor - filmography, # 12. Whoohoooo! :-)

I'm still amused that I'd never caught this till last night!

= = = =

Then a few nights ago, we had the tv on but weren't really watching it, but a movie came on that was so painful yet quirky we just *had* to keep watching, kinda like a trainwreck, y'know? [well, Kosh watched the whole thing - I just half-listened to half of it before giving in and settling on the couch with Kosh to watch the rest of it].

The movie? We Married Margo.

The plot summary: Based on a true story (written by and starring the two dingbats who lived it). It's about two men who both used to be married to the same woman. Now divorced from her, they move in together to try to straighten out their lives, and end up driving each other crazy.

This movie also features some great appearances by Cindy Crawford, Erik Estrada, and even Kevin Bacon who discusses how Margo is connected to successful people via six degrees of separation. LOL!

This movie is definitely not the usual formulaic drivel you get coming out of Hollywood. I'm not *highly* recommending it, but do keep it in mind if you want a movie that is certainly... "different".

= = = = = = = = =
On to other news: thankfully, there wasn't much in terms of the sneezage by the time I hit the hay last night... and I was so deeply asleep I don't think I even registered Kosh's numerous alarm clocks going off at 430am! Despite being a zombie while he was getting ready for work, I was wide awake as soon as he was out the door, grrrrr! Trying to get back to sleep didn't work, so I hopped on the puter instead.

Body kinda aches all over: I attribute that to following a yoga video yesterday which included quite a while in a shoulder stand. First time doing this vid in a long time - I shouldn't ache from it after another few rounds. And because of the aching, I'm so tempted to give myself the day off from the gym today. Catch up on some reading instead.

Cheers!

Monday, October 16, 2006

AaaAAaaAAaaaaaahhh chooooooo!

excuse me

bless me

thank me

[I'm having a cold, in case you didn't figure that out yet]

[tho, it's not a full-blown cold [yet], but considering I've sneezed and had to blow my nose more often today than over the past, oh, month??!! I *think* that indicates some sort of cold hitting my immune system, eh?]

Add to this two nights of lackluster sleep, *and* crappily cold weather,,, all this makes me LYNNE THE ZOMBIE!

On another note - glad so many of you enjoyed the photos I'd featured in the previous post[s] :-)

I'm sure I have tons of intelligent witty things to say/type ... but I think I'll focus my attention on the laundry right now: the dryers should be done soon, then it'll be another hour or so of foldage... by that time, I'll probably be wanting to curl up and zombify until Kosh gets back.

So, till tomorrow, dear readers.

Cheers!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

... as promised ...

i did say I'd feature more noteworthy pix I'd gathered from here.. so here goes!

Am I going to be able to look at bowling balls in the same way again????

You know, I've envisioned "faces" on cars [the older beemers, especially], but not, until now, on bowling balls.

Heh.

Now I gotta go bowling just to see whether this pic was photoshopped or not... ;-)



... and I am so glad in so many ways that our wedding didn't end up like this...

... i mean, look at that horrid poofy white dress!

[rolls eyes] *so* not my style.

LOL!

Now now, you thought I was going to highlight something else, weren't ya? teeheehee!!

"The Formula of Sex" is quite funny - of course, it takes full advantage of stereotypes and all, but that's what makes it funny lah!

You can try your luck in getting to the red hot sex box....

go ahead, try...

or, be like me, cos I ended up "reverse engineering" to find "The Path", teeheeheee!

Click on the pic to get to the larger image, and have fun! :-)

And last but certainly not least...

I am in the [slow, unhurried] process of getting a PC for myself.

For no particular reason than perhaps subliminal programming, I seem to be looking at Dell. And wanting an AMD processor instead of intel.

All other requirements are dictated by the minimum specifications needed in order to have a satisfying Sims2 & SimCity experience. No kidding! teeheehee!

I gotta say sorry to Dave, Kev and other Mac-fans: even though I know these games are actually available for Mac, I'm still looking at a PC because, well, I'm *used* to a PC, y'know??

Kinda lame excuse, I know...

But... it kills me though, to see how much an extremely basic MSOffice software package costs [over USD 250??!! = RM1000]! I am soooooo tempted to "order" a bootleg RM5 MSOffice from Low Yat Plaza ;-) But that's talk only lah - over here I wouldn't dare use the bootleg stuff :-(

And because of the prohibitive price, I'll be looking at other similar products [freeware, shareware, or smaller rivals, perhaps?], and if a Mac wins out in this aspect, well, there's still a chance then, eh?

Anyways - pity that this option is NOT available on Dell's "customise it!" page! Sure, I'm not a major coffee drinker at all, but once I get the PC and start spending hours and hours getting my Sim up to speed in university or dancing the night away... or watching my crummy city sprout skyscrapers or fall into ruins... a handy cuppa ould be real nice!

Okay so that's enough photo-related commentary for today.

Cheers!

[note: note all pix assumed to be in the public domain, and sourced from here]

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Warning! Major time waster ahead! [plus some pix]

Don't say I didn't warn youuuuuuuuu!

You know those emails you get with a bunch of humourous photos - some "real", many photoshopped, and most of them really quite funny? But if you were to keep each and every one of them, you'd better be good at cataloging them as soon as you save 'em, otherwise, well, they'll just get lost in the black hole that is your "funny pix" folder?

Well, you can now just browse thru over EIGHT HUNDRED (yes, you read right) of such pix, courtesy of Al Lowe and his Random Sight Gag site. Okay so they're not catalogued either, but hey, it's not your hard drive that's cluttered now, eh?

Anyways, after having spent WAAAAAAY too much time clicking through them all, I think there's no need to send me anymore "funny pix" unless they are not among the 800+ on this site, k?

teeheehee!

... ... ...

So, while going through those 800 ... Who has NOT come across this bit of a mind-screwer before? I know I certainly failed this the first time I tried to "say the colors" and not the words.

But guess what?

This time around, it didn't take much effort for me to be able meet the challenge!

I feel good about it - I choose to think it's an indication of self-mastery on my part :-)

... ... ...

And, since it's October and squash / pumpkin time and all....


... ... ...

That's enough for now. More pix later.

Cheers!

Friday, October 13, 2006

Weekend whimsies

... can you believe it SNOWED yesterday??!!

okay so it didn't accumulate here, but still... urgh... winter has certainly delivered its first punch. [some places got 2 feet of snow, for goodness sake! places where the trees' leaves hadn't even turned yet!]

Oh don't get me wrong, while I prefer warm weather, I don't hate winter or snow... I'm just disgruntled due to it being a bit out-of-season... but hey, today the weather's corrected itself and this weekend is supposed to relatively warm, so yay! :-)


...


Q: Why would I be dropping FOUR passport photos and FIFTY-FOUR pages in the mail?
A: To get to the next step in the paperwork requirements. So the ball is heading to the USCIS' court right now. Yay!

...

And hey, I just caught a segment on the news about The Harmonica Man's son's skateboard park effort! Made me feel all funny inside having an overlap between "real life" [well, as real as tv ever gets...] and "blogging life".

...

And guess what? I'm starting to read again! Whoohooo!!
- The Lincoln Lawyer - Michael Connelly
- Life of Pi - Yann Martel
- currently reading Sunstroke - Jesse Kellerman
- next on the list The Secret Life of Bees - Sue Monk Kidd

Have a good weekend, y'all!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Kuala London? Free hugs? Oh my!

So. Yet again. Kuala Lumpur is looking like fog-covered London.

What am I talking about?
  • From MobileMom: THIS THIS THIS [lots of links to news articles]
  • From scattered puzzle pieces: THIS
  • From Jeff Ooi: THIS
  • From Patrick Teoh: THIS
While regular Malaysians are suffering through all of this, the usual finger pointing is going on.

As usual.

It's like a broken record, isn't it?

Pssssst! All you useless finger-pointing impotent useless have I mentioned useless people in power who have yet again proved how useless you are: I say to you GO FOG YOURSELF!

But here, here's an amusing take on it all, by mozilla monster.

* * * * * moving on .....


It's the buzz of the 'net: The Free Hugs Campaign video.
[just saw it on Ms Sizzle's place]



It's really moving for me, as someone raised without hardly any good-touching. Just occasional intensive slaps across the face if you pissed off a certain parent. In general just plain no contact of any sort. Growing up so touch-deprived I probably ended up during my "free" years in situations I was better off *not* in but was driven by this unknown void in myself to desperately. seek. to. be. touched.

So this video? Certainly resonated with me.

Of course, if *i* were to pass Juan Mann [one man - get it??] while he was offering the hugs, I would be one of those who'd walk by with a "No thanx!" but would perhaps stop by a "safe distance" away to watch, with a half-smile playing on my lips and an eyebrow cocked in amusement.

Because.

My battered and cynical self will ask, How *safe* is it to just go hug this complete stranger? Why is he doing this - he gets off on having strangers pressed against him, izzit? Is someone gong to pick my pocket while I'm distracted?

Sad, isn't it?

I must say, the desperately-seeking-contact college student would probably have asked the same questions, but pushed them aside and "taken" a hug anyway.

But enough about me.

Wanna know what about this vid that makes me REAL sad??

That something like this would never ever work in Malaysia.

Why not?

Take your pick:
    Indecent. immoral. close proximity. un-Asian. un-Muslim. will lead to sin.

Yup, in a society where even holding hands in public is frowned upon, and sometimes can get you arrested, if not harrassed by overzealous members of the public or the religious/morality police,,, you think someome trying to bring Juan Mann's message will last more than a few minutes on a KL sidewalk?

I don't think so.

And *that* is sad.

On a positive note to end this post: I am thankful I have in Kosh my very own hug- and cuddle-friendly hubby-buddy :-)

Cheers!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Heh

She slinks off into tha doggy stylin' room, thiznen proceeds ta hack n cough again, this time eject'n just a wee bit of that bubbly onto *anotha* placemat-turned-minizzles this one blingin' as a placemat fo` her gangsta bizzy fo shizzle.

...

Now, tha of tha excellent trippin' `bout chillin' uncarpeted, wood floors is that it's oh so eazy ta clean up her messes. No carpet ta stain . Throw yo guns in the motherfuckin air! Jizzust wizzy up tha shiznit, n wipe down tha floor . Ill slap tha taste out yo mouf!

No, I haven't been hijacked / possessed. Read the above again - any of that seem familiar? Perhaps you read a similar story in this recent post. It just got "translated" into "jive/izzle talk" thanx to Gizoogle :-)

And in case you were wondering where I pulled this out of, well, Suze's to "blame"! Teeheehee!

I gotta admit, I've been amused by this "language" ever since not understanding it in Little Nicky [Popeye's Chicken - it's the shiznit!]. And of course, I was totally lost when they used Snoop and his izzle-talk in those GE (?) commercials last year.

So finding Gizoogle was certainly fun.

btw, my fave phrase so far? Ill slap tha taste out yo mouf! ... tho that throwing guns into the MFing air is quite amusing too!

I've gotta tear myself away before I translate more and more pages!!

Got.
To.
Logout.
Now.
!
!!
!!!

AAaaAaaaarrrRRrrrRGGgggggGGggGhhhhhhhhhhHH!

short answer / long answer

So Kosh and I are slowly making our way through Babylon 5 Season 4 DVDs... ever since we got to the "get the hell out of my galaxy" episode, the pull of the show has waned tremendously. Getting things sorted out on Mars/Earth certainly does not hold the same fascination as getting the Shadows and Vorlons sorted out :p

Anyways.

So we were watching Bab 5 the other day, and one episode referred to the Helsinki Syndrome. Kosh and I looked puzzledly at each other: "Eh? I thought that's the Stockholm Syndrome?" Turns out that the former is a common mistake which, if not originating from then definitely perpetuated by an error in Die Hard the movie.

Chalk THAT up as your useless bit of trivial information for the day, courtesy of Lynne.

Oh, and in case you were wanting an explanation for this post's title?

It's from today's Dilbert comic strip [click here, click date of 10/09].

It caused me to LOL at 6am - what an EXCELLENT day to start my day! :-)

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Belated!

I just realised I missed the TWO YEAR blogiversary of this particular blog*!

My first post on this blog was on 4th October 2004 - it was a rant about the Malaysian income tax office, triggered by one of the errands I ran between my last day of work in Sept and my departure for the U.S. in mid-Oct 2004.

So this blog actually documents indirectly the time Kosh and I have been together-together. While we've known each other since college days, we only started pseudo-dating in Oct/Nov 2003, and [cutting out details you don't need to know] a year later I relocated myself halfway across the world to give us a true chance at success. The rest is history.

Of course, this blog was actually established as a means of keeping in touch with friends, ex-colleagues and family without having to email the same news to a bunch of people while I was off supposedly gallivanting around the U.S. I had already anticipated my not wanting to be bogged down by emails, and had planned accordingly. Unfortunately, only a handful understood. All too many dropped out of touch, while a few amazing ones tried to put me on guilt trips for not keeping in touch via emails. Geeez!!

But no matter, I soon started writing FOR ME, not for my originally targetted audience, and I feel I've come into my own in the blogosphere. I'm also able to mess around with some basic html/css stuff and play around with settings and templates - stuff I never knew ANYthing about 2 years ago.

But the best has been discovering all those bloggers out there! From not knowing anyone except my ex-bf's blog, you can take a look at my blogroll to see who I've discovered and read regularly - and only a handful of them are people I know-know.. most of them are true blog buddies.

And on the other side of the coin? Well, technorati sez I have 159 links from 53 blogs, and wholinkstome sez I appear on 21 different blogrolls. I think it's awesome that people out there are reading my posts, and I'm looking forward to share more with ya in the years to come.

My thanks to everyone for reading.

Y'all come back now, y'hear! :-)


* NOTE: Technically, my first blog post *ever* was on 17 June 1004 in a now-dormant blog containing a total of ten posts where I had to unload what I was feeling during my last 3 months or so of work. As such, this particular blog will remain unnamed and unlinked :-)

a meme from May...

.. not May the person, but May the MONTH ... that's about 4 months ago!

From a fellow Lost Blogger Alissa who meme'd herself here, and I too tagged MYself, tho it took me 4 months to dust the cobwebs off of the draft and work on it for real.

So here goes: The Countdown Meme

[now, if I were cruel, I'd have Europe's The Final countdown playing in the background while you read this.... just so you know, it's certainly playing in my head!!]

10 Favorites:
Favorite Season: Summer
Favorite Color: Black
Favorite Time: Quality Time with Kosh
Favorite Food: I have yet to find a replacement for Porgy's BBQ Beef Ribs in Urbana.
Favorite Drink: Long Island Iced Tea / non-al: Coffee Bean's Vanilla Latte
Favorite Ice Cream: Ben & Jerry's Dublin Mudslide
Favorite Place: "my corner" at my Coffee Bean hangout
Favorite Sport: Tennis
Favorite Actor: errr... James Marsters?
Favorite Actress: errr... Alyson Hannigan?

9 Currents:
Current Feeling: tired
Current Drink: Coke Zero
Current Time: 7:59pm
Current Show on TV: Dragonheart on WGN (it's on, but I'm not paying attention)
Current Mobile Used: Sony Ericson P800
Current Windows Open: none (hey it's a wee bit chilly out!)
Current Underwear: black
Current Clothes: black bike shorts, black babt tee, white socks
Current Thought: "what a silly meme, making me peek at my undies!"

8 Firsts:
First Nickname: something like "ze-lin" no thanx to my father.
First Kiss: a good-for-nothing guy called Saiful.
First Crush: Paul McCartney.
First Best Friend: hmmm... my kindergarten sweetheart Raymond Yap?
First Vehicle I Drove: no idea what beat-up car the driving instructor had.
First Job: Customer Service @ Toys R Us, while waiting for my SPM results.
First Date: well in Malaysia a date usually happened in groups - but I think my first real outing with my first real bf was to go see the movie Isabella or Fenomena.
First Pet: Puffy the dawg.

7 Lasts:
Last Drink: Coke Zero
Last Kiss: Kosh, a few hours ago, before he passed out on the couch post-call!
Last Meal: a zone bar. if REAL meal, then lunch/dinner yesterday at the local Thai place
Last Website Visited: mapquest [trying to map the various local IHOPs to figure out which is the closest / most convenient]
Last Movie Watched: in the theater - that CGI movie, not Over the Hedge, but similar theme/story. If at home, then Kill Bill Vols 1 & 2.
Last Phone Call: Kosh.
Last TV Show Watched: Star Trek TOS [The City on the Edge of Forever], but wasn't paying full attention

6 Have You Evers:
Broken the Law?: probably
Been Drunk: hell yeah!
Kissed Someone You Didn't Know: nope
Been in the middle/close to gunfire: nope
Skinny Dipped: yep
Broken Anyones Heart: probably

5 Things:
Things you can hear right now: the TV with Dragonheart playing
Things on your bed: the bedding???
Things you ate today: zone bars (2), tortilla chips
Things you do when you are bored: surf the net
[Hey, there are only FOUR things in this list?!!!]

4 Places You Have Been Today:
- the library
- "centered / balanced" [yoga meditation]
- the loo ;-)
- the couch

3 Things On Your Desk Right Now:
- the laptop
- a whole bunch of Kosh's papers/bills/junk
- the power cord for the laptop

2 Choices:
Salt or Pepper?: Salt
Hot or Cold?: Hot

1 Place You Want to Visit:
Iceland

That wasn't too painful, was it?

Anyone wanna tag themselves, go right ahead.

Cheers!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Wednesday Waffles

Why waffles, u ask? Heh. Actually I've been in the mood for "breakfast food" for a while... one of these days we are going to end up at IHOP or something for a meal, I just know it!! Not necessarily for waffles, though - crepes have been on my mind since forever. Cheese blintz.... mmmMMmmMmmmmMMmmm!!

On to other news..

E-book freebie!
Scott Adam's "thought experiment" God's Debris is available for free, in e-book form, here. No strings attached. He figures if people read this for free they'll be more likely to be willing to pay for his other non-Dilbert books. We'll see. I've downloaded it, but haven't done anything eilse with it at the moment. But thought I'd spread the word, while I remember.

Brain Teasers!
What do the following mean? [highlight the space between the "(" ")" for answers]
LANG4UAGE
(foreign language)

beating
beating bush beating
beating
(beating around the bush)

issue issue
issue issue
issue issue
issue issue
issue issue
(tennis shoes)
Plenty more here. Have fun!!

Autumn Cleaning!
This morning I started cleaning up stuff in the kitchen. Wiping down all the countertops. Washing the drainboard. Stuff like that. For some reason, it escalated into sweeping, vacuuming and mopping the entire apartment.

Tomorrow's laundry day: that will probably escalate into finally rearranging the closet contents. Not complaining, just amused.

Ciao!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Custom Stamps?

I'd been toying with the idea of ordering some customized stamps using one of the wedding photos, and using those stamps when sending out wedding announcements / thank you cards, etc.

In the end we didn't bother with it - we just wanted to get those things out and in. the. mail.!!

But yesterday, I looked it up anyways, just to see how much it would cost, if ever I *did* want to make my own stamps.

My oh my.

    A sheet of 20 customized stamps costs $18, or 90 cents per stamp.

    A "regular" stamp = 39 cents!!

Ridiculous!

I'd concentrate on customising the return address labels, rather than blowing money unnecessarily on "premium" stamps.

Heh.

So now I know.

And so do you.

Monday, October 02, 2006

... yet *more* cat tales!

So like 5 minutes ago, i hear this yowl somewhere in the apartment while I'm otherwise occupied. Yes, a yowl. Followed by the sweet sweet sounds of the cough/hack that preceeds a cat puke session. Fun.

I find the cat in time to see her eject bubbly white liquid onto one of the placemats-turned-mini-rugs in the kitchen.

Yum.

She slinks off into the living room, then proceeds to hack and cough again, this time ejecting just a wee bit of that bubbly onto *another* placemat-turned-mini-rug, this one serving as a placemat for her water bowl.

Arrgghh!

Now, the of the excellent things about having uncarpeted, wood floors is that it's oh so easy to clean up her messes. No carpet to stain! Just wipe up the stuff, and wipe down the floor!

But today she chose to eject whatever she felt needed to be ejected... onto the few areas of the floor that actually *have* some sort of fabric/covering.

Niiiiiiiiiice kitty.

But you know what? This is nothing! Yesterday, now THAT takes the cake!

Yesterday was pretty much vegetate and cuddly day, with Kosh and I rewatching some movies and Futurama DVDs. So maybe the sound was kinda loud, or we were just too interested in what was onscreen that we didn't hear anything out of the ordinary.

But.

I was going through some stuff in a box, and had placed that box on the bed, and was taking stuff out, going through them, etc etc etc, when my fingertips brushed against something gritty on the bedspread. I turned my attention away from the box contents and to the bedspread.

And what did I find?

Kitty's puke.

A nice & big pretty much dried up puke spot.

On the bed.

CORRECTION: on MY side of the bed!! GgggGGggrrRRrRrRRrrrrRRrRR!!

It gets better: So Kosh cleaned the puke off of the bedspread. Checked under it: of course the liquid part of the puke had obeyed gravity and Murphy's Law, staining through not only to the bottom of the bedspread, but also the blanket. And the sheet. And the mattress pad.

Surprisingly, there was no sign of puke stains on the mattress itself!

So, we treated them stains with some stain stick thingy, and bundled bedspread, sheets and mattress pad into the washer downstairs.

A quick check before throwing them into the dryer later showed that the stains were gone, whoohooo!!

But - when we were done with the dryer.... the comforter was dry, the sheets were still mostly wet, and ... the matress pad? That was fried. As in bubbly melted and hard in certain places.

Turns out the washing instructions specified that it should be "dried" without heat. Neither of us had thought to check the instructions beforehand.

So... ruined mattress pad.

Yay.

Oh, and our spare mattress pad? Just the previous day, we'd installed it on the futon, under the sheet we'd set up on it. Neither of us were going to undo *that* hard work in order to re-install it on the mattress in the bedroom.

What great timing!

So in the end, we officiated the futon in its sleeping capacity (as opposed to its couch capacity) last night. We'll go hunt for a new mattress pad tomorrow. And probably take the cat to the vet again, just to see if anything's wrong with her. *sigh*

And in the meantime? The bedroom door stays shut.

And I need to keep an eye and ear open for more hacking and coughing.

If she even THINKS about puking on the futon... watch out kitty!!

Bleah.

So, how's YOUR Monday coming along??
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