Thought of the day

I thank whatever gods may be / For my unconquerable soul. / I am the master of my fate / I am the captain of my soul. ~William Ernest Henley, Invictus

Government's promises are like the Ringgit, they depreciate with time.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Little Buaya

Ever since I moved into the flat in March, I rarely get a chance to chat with my landlord as he leaves for work very early (7am) and turns in quite early (9pm) everyday. Sometimes, I could catch him on weekend mornings and exchange a few words before I go to my lab.

As for his 3-year-old son, I barely see him too and when we met, it's always the usual "hello, kor kor" and "bye bye, kor kor" dialogue. Back then, I thought that this boy is very very shy...and adorable. And once, I even showed a disbelief expression when his dad told me that the boy is hyperactive.

Every morning on weekdays, the father will pass the child to the aunty next door before going to work. And so for months, whenever I go to and fro school, this boy never pay any interest in me whatsoever. Even after I attempted to bribe him with candies and jellos for a few times, the ice just wouldn't break. Ok, fine. That's that.

But since CM arrived, this little kiddo sort of metamorphoses 180 degree... Suddenly he became so proactive, lively, bubbly, interested in CM:p

Now, every morning when CM go to work (with me escorting her:p), the boy will immediately rush to the gate of his babysitter's flat and ask (always the same question), "姐姐呢? (Where is big sister?)"

The next question would be, "姐姐要去那里? (Where is big sister going?)"

Then when we came back together in the evening, he will ask the same questions again without fail and continue to tell CM about his day like nobody business while we unlock the gate and door. Totally ignoring me. Mader.

Sometimes if I am alone, he will still come to the gate and ask, "姐姐呢? 姐姐去那里?"

Little chee ko pek!
Yes, this is the double-standard chubby chee ko pek caught in the act! His name is Bruce and he can only pronounce his name as "Bulu"!!! But I still adore him lar :)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Here In My Home - Malaysian Artistes For Unity

As usual every morning, I would login to my blog and start clicking at the blog links on the right-hand-side of my main page to check out what my friends have been up to lately (Yes, Tun M is also my friend! I commented on his blog also:p). So today, I clicked on gnap, expected to see the same picture with the medicine bottles in the fridge. Instead, I was greeted by this:

Monday, May 26, 2008

Our First Compact Camera

CM called CY out for dinner yesterday somewhere near City Hall at 8pm. We decided to drop by Funan Digitalife Mall prior to the rendezvous to purchase our very first digital camera since it is near City Hall and that CM will be travelling next Monday.

Funan Digitalife Mall - where we bought the camera.

CM did some research online and finally narrowed down to two models from the Panasonice Lumix DMC series - LZ8 and LZ10. These two models were launched early this year to replace their predecessors, LZ6 and LZ7 with few upgrades such as, wider lenses, manual and semi-automatic exposure modes and...of course, more pixels.We settled for LZ10 since it has a wider lense and higher MP than LZ8 with a difference of only $80. In addition, this model is extremely new and is currently not available in Malaysia yet...hehe.

Panasonic Lumix DMC - LZ10

Like small kids who are always excited with their newly purchased toys, we immediately attached the batteries, inserted the 4GB memory card and started cam-whoring (Mostly by CM).

Spotted this Komtar lookalike skyscraper

St Peter's Cathedral just next to the City Hall MRT exit

Old British architectural style Capitol Building just opposite St Peter's Cathedral.

Clockwise: CM, CY, ZQ, Gnu

We caught some dragons doing pole dancing beside the road on our bus ride back home.

Back home, we decided to do some Edison Chen stunts but this time round, only Edison Chen is in the frame. Of course, I was the victim while CM happily snapped away...tsk tsk. CM, please don't send your laptop for repair

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Main Guli

After 28 years of dispute, finally the Big Boys got their own rocks...pft.

Bolehland owns this piece of...erm...did you see anything?

Whereas Pulau Batu Puteh is now officially Pedra Branca.

Now we have a sad Abdullah and a happy Lee. At least now we can go fishing off Middle Rock...pfft. Looks like next the Big Boys will be wrestling for Banana Rock...

I heard...maybe is just rumour...but I heard there is black gold beneath the white rock. Looks like Barbatus Negara lost quite a lot of battles this year...

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Diamond is Forever

"Have you ever done any research on the internet about diamonds?" CM asked me out of the blue.
"Huh? No wor." scratching my head.
And so, CM gave me a 15 minutes crash course on it.
Basically, it's all down to the 4Cs: Color, Clarity, Cut and Carat.
Before we get to that, lets get ourselves familiarise with the anatomy of a round brilliant cut diamond, shall we?

In short, a round brilliant cut stone would have 3 main parts: The Crown, Girdle and Pavilion as shown below.

The Crown can be subdivided into few smaller parts such as the table, star facet, bezel facet and the upper girdle facet. Likewise for the Pavilion, it consists of the bezel facet, pavilion facet and the cullet.


"Do you know that each diamond will have a grading report certified by certain international groups like the GIA (Gemological Institute of America)? It's something like a birth cert and is unique to each diamond." asked CM.
"Huh? No wor." scratch my head again.
Note that there are many international groups and labs out there such as the Scandinavian Diamond Nomenclature (Scan DN), International Gemological Institute (IGI), Accredited Gem Appraisers (AGA), Holloway Cut Adviser (HCA), American Gem Society (AGS)...etc. GIA is just one of them and since that most of the diamonds sold in Malaysia are certified by GIA, the following discussion on the 4Cs will be based on the GIA standards.
  • Grading from D-Z
  • Grade D-F is considered colourless.
  • Grade G-L is nearly colourless.
  • The value of the stone decreases as you scale down from D to Z.

  • There are 2 types of clarity characteristics: inclusions (enclosed within a diamond) and blemishes (confined to its surface).
  • These characteristics help gemologists to differentiate between natural diamonds from synthetics and simulants.
  • Inclusions and blemishes are unique to each stone, like human's fingerprints. Hence, these features also enable one to identify individual diamond.
  • There are 11 clarity grades ranging from Flawless to I3 as shown below:

  • Any inclusions/blemishes from grade IF till VS2 is invisible to the naked eye.
  • The value of the stone degrade as you scale down from F to I3.


  • The picture below presents the proportion of an ideal cut diamond.

  • The proportions will affect the complex relationship of the stone with light: how light strikes the surface, how much enters the diamond, and how, and in what form light returns to your eye.
  • The goal of the ideal cut, is to have light enter a diamond, disperse the light as it bounces from facet to facet, thereby producing the different prismatic colors and brilliance, finally returning as much light to the eye as possible.
  • The result is a display of three attributes:
  1. Brightness is the combination of all white light reflecting from the surface and interior of a diamond.
  2. Fire is the colored flashes that can be seen in a diamond.
  3. Scintillation describes the sparkle of light you see in a diamond, and the overall pattern of bright and dark areas when you look at a diamond face-up.

  • Sometimes the shape of the rough diamond makes it impractical to cut a stone closer to "ideal" proportions without losing significant weight.
  • A shallow cut makes the diamond appears larger as you have a larger table, but the pavilion will be shorter in order to retain the same carat weight. Vice versa for a deep cut.
  • A shallow/deep cut will produce less brilliant diamond due to light leakage.
  • Diamonds cut with precisely aligned and optimally proportioned facets will produce a fascinating pattern called the Hearts and Arrows (H&A) when viewed through a gemscope as shown below:

  • One can see 8 hearts from the pavilion view (bottom) and 8 arrows from the crown view (top) under the gemscope.

Carat Weight

  • One carat (ct) equals 1/5 of a gram in weight.
  • For diamonds under a carat, each carat is divided into 100 points – similar to pennies in a dollar. 0.75ct. = 75 points, ½ ct. = 50 points

I never knew that these dazzling little gems can be so sophisticated and I always thought that the sole purpose of their existence is just to bedazzle the women and to burn a big hole in men's pocket...

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Let Us Not Forget Her

After the Electoral Tsunami in March, what is cooking in the frying pan of Bolehland most recently would be the RPK sedition charges furore. Raja Petra Kamaruddin (RPK), editor for political website, Malaysia Today was charged shortly after he published an article on the murdered Mongolian beauty- "Let's send the Altantuya Murderers to Hell". He was alleged to link the murder of the Mongolian model Altantuya Shaariibuu to the DPM of Bolehland, Najib Tun Razak.
I googled the article, read it and I was stupified as to how a person can be easily charged with sedition just by re-enacting converstations over a dinner in words, albeit how subtly had he layout the facts. If this was the case, I think my previous entry plus this one would really get me in jail or worst, detain under the notorious Internal Security Act without trial next time I pass through the custom.
Since the homicide surfaced more than a year ago, the proceeding of the case as I expected was just a show in a kangaroo court, snailing through times, hoping that the Bolehlanders and the international scrutineers would eventually forget about the case as it shifts out of focus. And just as I anticipated, the mainstream media had given up on reporting the proceedings soon enough, and so the case sort of faded elusively that even I lost track of it and eventually became careless about it. It will be a different story if I am Setev Shaariibuu, father of the murdered child.
Now, close your eye and try to imagine the intense sorrow caused by the loss of a loved one. Then try to emphatize the grief of this father who had lost his child, not by natural death, but murdered and blowed up into smithereens. Can you feel it? To take this a step further, this grievance is further amplified by vengeance and anger so desperately when the justice is so near, yet so far. Can you feel the frustration when this old man does not know who killed his child, why they do so and why the justice that he and his daughter deserve long ago has not arrive? Why is the prosecution taking so long? This searing pain, can you feel it?
As I mentioned earlier, I read RPK's entry and truely there are a lot of unexplained controversies. I did some digging on google and below are some of the bits and pieces of the puzzle:
  1. An Affidavit was submitted to the court and the judge then, Justice Segera after reading the Affidavit remarked that he was even convinced that Baginda Razak is guilty. Justice Segera was immediately removed from hearing the case, replaced by a junior judicial commissioner. Why the replacement? And what was written in the Affidavit?
  2. Before the trial started, the Attorney-General publicly announced that only three people (Baginda Razak, Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri and Corporal Sirul Azhar Umar) and no others are involved in the murder. How can the Attorney-General be so sure and acted as if he already knew the full story when nobody had testified? Moreover, it is not the Attorney-General's job to determine this.
  3. The three accused denied killing Altantuya but astonishingly the police knew exactly where to look for her remains deep in the jungle. Weird?
  4. Altantuya's immigration records were erased from the immigration computers. How did this happen? Doesn't this look like a cover-up for something or someone? Or maybe this is just an isolated case. But if this is the case, how then can you explain the expunge of Uuriintuya Gal-Ochir's (Altantuya's friend) entry to Malaysia from Beijing from the Malaysian immigration computers?
  5. Despite Najib's swearing by Allah that he does not know the deceased, there's a letter from him to the Malaysian embassy supporting Altantuya's visa application. And, Burmaa Oyunchimeg (Altantuya's cousin) testified that she had seen a photo of Najib having dinner with the Mongolian beauty and Abdul Razak Baginda. Amnesia?
  6. Last but not least, how does the exclusive explosives used by the military fall into the hands of a police?

I am not trying to tie Najib in to the lurid murder, that's not my point here. Under international scrutiny, especially under tight observation from our Asian neighbours, the withering dignity of our judicial system is at stake. I doubt it can take another blow. But, why can't our premier recognize this and act upon it efficiently? The culture of "incompetence and ineptness being always obscured by arrogance and abuse of authorities" and hideous actions and threats so that others cower is becoming more rampant. The arrest of RPK and the charges against him is yet another on the list. So, what about Press Freedom?

With all these cooking in Bolehland, how long can I stride and stand tall with my head up in pride as a Malaysian on foreign lands? I wonder.

When will the prosecution end? And what would be the outcome? I wonder.

When will Setev's aching heart be bandaged and consoled? I wonder...

Some articles on the murder:
Let's send Altantuya murderers to hell
Najib and Altantuya
The haunting story of Altantuya Shaariibuu
Susan Loone

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


May 3 is the official ShutDown Day. Whadya mean by shutdown? Meaning, you do not jump out of the bed and instantanously push the "ON" button of your PCs, laptops, PSs, Xboxes, Wii, Ipod or whatever gadgets this particular day. Unplug yourself, savvy? Instead, do something else, take a walk in the garden and see which bush you will end up by the end of the day. Easy, right? "How hard could that be?" or so I thought.

Ok, I attempted to unplug on May 3, but it's a Saturday for God's sake. With nothing much to distract me all day long, at 11.30am (woke up at 8am) I succumbed to the temptation of my PC on my study desk...(Initially I intended to complete the revision for my final paper.) Loser. Once I plugged and switched on my PC and Windows XP came into view on the was no turning back. Welcome to the Dark Side.

On May 4, my second trial to unplug myself, which pathetically failed when I finally yielded at time 20:00 with the beep of my PC booting itself. You really can't blame me for surrending my soul so easily and when I was so close in accomplishing my mission with 4 more hours to go. What else can you do when you had tidied the room early in the morning and bathed, then spent the rest of the morning chit-chatting with landlord on current issues, savoured a plate of yummy-licious fried prawn mee for lunch, flipped through The Straits Times from page to page in my room (Mind you, the weekend edition is damn thick.), went for a jog in the evening and then dinner, bathed and flipped through the papers again???

May 5, another unsuccessful attempt when I returned to the lab in the evening after mugging in the library since morning. The progress of my revision was amazingly speedy without the distraction from the Discovery Channel or Youtube or Google... So after straining my brain for more than half of the day, don't I just deserve a serving of juicy blogs from my friends??? Heck, I do.

I will keep on trying, though I failed again today. (evidently, you are reading this post.) Despite my unsuccessful efforts, I wouldn't say those were unfruitful ones:) Try it, unplug yourself today and you will realize that you can achieve a whole lot more than just click, click and clicks.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Ashame Only Now? Retard or what?

I don't know why Abdullah Badawi is ashame only now. Where was he when the sexist remarks erupted like nobody's business back in 2007??
“I felt ashamed if people watched television and saw what was happening in our Dewan. In my heart, I also felt that all this happened because there was a live broadcast at that time."
“Each (MP) wanted to make himself or herself seen debating or ‘aksi’ (acting) in the Dewan. That was how I felt.”
If he had not slept through his previous administration, he would have caught this on Youtube even before the 29th April "1st Live Telecast" of the Parliament's proceeding, dated 9th May 2007. Pfft.

I am ashamed (of you), too! Brudder, the world is watching la.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Lazy Noon

The shower is on,

As the sunlight slipped through the windows,

And hit the tiles on the floor.

Looking at my shadow amidst the glow,

While hot water sprayed upon my torso,

And trickled down to the drain faceplate.

This tranquility soothed me

On a hot Labour Day noon