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.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Prime Lens

Han Yang talked to me about getting a prime lens. The very first time when I heard those two words, I was like,"What is a "prime lens"? Is it something like your favourite lens which you mount on your camera most of the time - hence primary lens?"

"No, it's a lens with fixed focal length. But faster aperture. So your image will turn out pretty sharp than the zoom lens. Furthermore, with larger aperture, you can shoot nightshots without tripod also. Furthermore, it has less depth of field which makes it perfect for shooting portrait."

Har? Cannot zoom? Sound not very appealing to me le...Furthermore with my D60, which comes short of the built-in focus drive motor, getting a prime lens would mean that I can only focus manually.

After some research on the internet, I realized that as a DSLR beginner, I should start off with prime lens instead of zoom lens. Reason being, without zooming, I would need to zoom with my feet, closing in or moving away from the subject. Indirectly, I would be more aware of the surrounding and it forces me to think more about my framing. Read here, here and here.

Immediately after my last paper yesterday, Han Yang and I went to Alan Photo at Sim Lim Square to get one of this each for $171 (inclusive of GST).

That very night, I mounted the lens on my camera and started testing out the gem. The image is sharp, good low light performance and the best part is that it is so much lighter than my zoom lens. Plus, the manual focus part is so cool. Think I will use manual focus with my zoom lens in future as well!

The prime lens will be permanently mounted on my camera for a while. More photos to come soon:)

Friday, November 21, 2008

My Landlord says

Study so much may not be useful. What is important is street smart. If you have street smart, you will survive anywhere you go.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


When you have too much time, you can't focus. When you are out of time and need the last minute focus, suddenly there are abundant of events to distract you. Wonder what is the outcome from a 2-day revision. Hm...people from academia suck in management, not all, but I happen to come across many. It's time to teach them a lesson! ~evil grin

Time of uncertainties and the market outlook is bleak. End of the year and the fund managers are either closing their accounts or heading somewhere on earth for vacation, seeking temporary solace from the recent financial hullaballoo. And so the 1Q09 result briefing ended without any questions from the floor. Grrr...

And when I thought that there's no scene bigger than what I had experienced throughout this semester, yesterday night I was at the S.League Awards Night 2008 mingling with team managers from Dalian Shide Siwu, Geylang United, SAF FC...etc. Received a trophy from the Parliamentary Secretary of MCYS and CM remarked that the guy looks so young and handsome.

Tomorrow after the internet communication testing is over, I will vanish into thin air...

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Halloween Night Out

The Esplanade.

Adopting the same route when we hanged out with Marcus et. al, we patronized Inle Myanmar at Peninsula Plaza to savour the bud-tantalizing tamarind pomfret, black bean pork stew, rozelle leaves...slurp. Whichafter, we took a 15 minutes walk to Beach Road for a cup of java plus kaya toast.

It's Halloween and along the way we saw sexy demons with cute tiny "Hellboy" horns and voluptuous sailor girls. Since this is not an X-rated site, so I will not post any aphrodisiacal images here. Anyway, haven't got any:p

Nowadays, I always bring my camera out for practice. Let's see what the "Vibration Reduction" lens can do for night shots without a tripod. Here's a shot of the financial hub on the other bank of Singapore River. Notice the merlion on the left?
Financial hub of Singapore.

Don't know if it is true, I heard that MM Lee Kuan Yew is a strong believer of feng shui, an ancient Chinese system of aesthetics believed to utilize the Laws of both heaven (astronomy) and earth (geography) to gain properity and wealth. Here are some Singapore feng shui gags. The most recent one is about the revolving direction of the Singapore Flyer.

CM has the eyes of a photographer.
This Merlion sits facing East aligned to the most auspicious geomancy position as advised by feng shui experts. It is believed that this alignment helps this resource-poor island to remain prosperous despite its more important shortcomings - like the lack of water and natural resources. I don't know about you, but I am also an enthusiast of feng shui. And that night, we decided to collect some "spill over" wealth from the merlion. CM can be very modest yet elegant in doing so.

Well, I don't care if it looks like I am drinking puke from the merlion. Big bucks, baby...give me big bucks!

Gulp gulp gulp gulp...

Star buzzed

"I think there's a mediacorp artist staying near my place." I told my friend in the lab and he showed me the "no big deal" face.

"It's an actress, very pretty one" Still the same expression.

"At the hawker centre near my flat...I saw her more than twice already. But I just couldn't remember her name." His expression changed into "are you sure" mode.

"But weird le, like no one recognizes her one..." I carried on.

"Pretty actress eating at the hawker centre? At your place? But no commotion?" He showed me his "I don't believe you now" face.

Well, today, I saw her again and I told my landlord. "Yes, she is Amy Cheng lor. Sometimes she will jog in the park in front of our flat one."
I confirm I saw her ah.

One of these days, I am gonna go paparazzo.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Mad Lab

After weeks of intensive effort, finally submitted the results and documentation. Rest? Not yet, finals is creeping near. Two more weeks of mugging before I am released from the invisible prison:p After that? No no no, you can't take a breather during this financial crisis. It's a golden opportunity to me. Now is the time to do homework, research, data-mining, get all the rudimentary details...

Gonna shed the lacklustre attitude, time is short. Nonetheless, I still appreciate every single day, every moment. Because of all the people I cherish and love, passion for the things I adore, the possibility of my potentials, my matter how minute it is, I will strive. I am empowered to strive. And triumph.

Soft skill can power one a long way...up the mountain higher than anyone else. But first, you need to know which peak to conquer, so that you will know which mountain foot to commence your climb. Of course you do not go unequipped. There is no short cut. It's just sweats and pains. No crosscut, buddy. Focus. Otherwise, the dream will only become an unrequited crush in the end.

Before I fathom, it's time to make decisions, again.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Halo, friend!

Went to Parit Buntar during the Deepavali break. Had dinner with Marcus and Charity at Golden Miles complex, a place where I called "Little Thailand" and yes, we had Thai food. It's a miracle meeting the couple in Singapore. It all happened 2 weeks ago when CM and I went to Golden Miles to purchase our bus tickets, but Grassland and Konsortium had their tickets sold out. That very night, I spotted Charity amidst the stream of commuters at Outram Park Interchange, walking briskly in the opposite direction.

"Isn't that Charity?" I patted on CM's shoulder and pointed at the rear of her coursemate. CM bursted into a sprint, caught up and it's reunion time. Marc was there too. Apparently they were on their way home. We did a little catch up, we told them we couldn't get a ticket back and they gave us a number. What's the chance of meeting someone whom you never meet for 3 years on a foreign land? And what's the chance of bumping into that someone and he/she turned out to be your benefactor?

Anyway, the ride back was not that smooth. The bus broke down somewhere at Rawang and the repair took entire night. In the end we only reached at noon when we were supposed to reach at dawn. CM's brother ferried us back and on the way when I looked out the window, I saw this ring of light radiating from the sun. Took this picture at CM's house. Too bad, my exposure compensation was set at -2.3EV and the auto ISO conveniently set the ISO at 800, so it turned out a bit noisy.