Friday, November 30, 2012

Really Cool Songs

Really cool songs are usually not big commercial successes or chart toppers. There has to be something with the melody and/or lyrics that makes it special.

First on my list has to be Lou Reed, his drug laced, brash lyrics and mind numbing bass line and melody make this in a class of its own.



Just to prove that punk bands also can come up with gems, The Stranglers shine here.



How to be sexy, breathy and lyrics that are suggestive but goes nowhere with soaring vocals. Chris Isaak at his best. 



Listen first and see how compact and loud this band is, and there are only 3 of them The highly under rated Rush from Canada with their biggest hit.



The brilliant, enigmatic, in your face performer Annie Lennox ... in all her glory and talent, powerful lyrics to boot.



For all of Pink Floyd's brilliance, this song somehow stays with us for the longest time. Its the title I guess. So cool.




If The Beatles never existed, we'd be talking about The Beach Boys. Not many of us appreciate the musical genius of the band, in particular with Brian Wilson. This song can be broken up into 3 songs, thats how good their composition can be and what about their harmonies.




Roy Orbison, under rated, this song revived in a duet with kd lang only accentuated his musical brilliance and unique voice.




Santana at his best, this song makes love to you at the start, caresses you then brings you to musical orgasm with his riveting solo.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Pink Elephant In The Room

You are in a room in a social setting with a few people and there is a pink elephant in the room as well. How long can you carry on before you start talking about the pink elephant? In local financial markets, the pink elephant is the results of the upcoming elections. What if? 

My opinion, for what it is worth, the ruling party mightl win only one state in the Peninsula, I find it very hard to see where the second state is coming from. What about phantom voters and rigged votes? That can only be used in close seats, its pointless to use rigged votes in all seats, and I think there are not enough of such votes to go around town.

Whether its Anwar or the leader from PAS as PM, I don't think thats an issue anymore. PKR may lose some votes on that but miniscule.

Will there be a hung parliament? I think that is the best the ruling party can hope for, a hung parliament. Then its a jockeying of candidates to move to one side or another. Not a good situation. However, I do think in a hung parliament situation, the momentum will favour people moving to PKR rather than the other way around. Because a hung parliament already means, the tide has shifted significantly, and shifting still, ... for politicians with a bit of brains, a sinking ship or a new ship - no contest. 

If the opposition wins convincingly, what will happen to the stock market? I read in the front page of The Star, of all places, the front page!!! Talk about media propaganda. Scare tactics started already. 

First of all, there are three components, one is foreign funds, two local funds, three retail funds. As the election draws closer (say two weeks to elections), retail funds would exit already. Local funds being local funds will stay put, anyway, the big local funds already controlled the indexed stocks.

The key scare tactic is to instil into the public that foreign funds will exit and cause a plunge. Let's look at the size of foreign funds. They make up around 20% of volume. Look at the stock they hold: Public Bank, IOI Corp, KLK, BAT, Guinness, DIGI, IHH .... there are very few that are holding big local indexed GLCs. Ask any genuine head of sales or head of research NOW, they will tell you most of their clients are soooo underweight Malaysia, even though the controlled mainstream media would want you to believe otherwise.

Look at the stocks above, will the fundamentals change significantly for these stocks should there be a change in government???? Thailand changes government every couple of years, see what happened to their civil service and listed companies .... same-same!!! Just because this is going to be our first time, its easier to put up scare tactics cause we have not travelled this path before.

I believe the level of foreign shareholdings in local stocks are low, and they are in "safe counters" anyway. So, the sell down will be minimal. A probable fact that not many realise is that a substantial amount of the so called foreign funds now who are long Malaysian stocks,.... are probably Malaysian owned funds rerouted, no need for me to go into possible details.

A recent report in The Star, UOB KayHian's Vincent Khoo was unconvinced on the local market stating in a report that foreign institutional funds that it had met were mostly underweight on Malaysia and continued to be “wary” of Malaysia's index components' high valuations.

Top Ten Issues That Divide Malaysians according to a survey by Merdeka Centre for Opinion Research


I am not trying to put up a rosy picture should there be a change in government. I am trying to put up a realistic picture. Yes, markets will go down and stay there for a couple of months until there is stability, a proper manifesto and proper execution that things are different. I see index could go to 1,400-1,450 temporarily. But consider this:

- there will be more "real tenders of government projects"
- there will be better utilisation and accountability of our "big revenue items"
- there will still be corruption but hopefully a bit less, but let's give them 5 years la ... we gave 50 to someone, we cannot give them 5???

We so badly need a two party system in our country for the democratisation process to make any headway.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

If Don't Quit, Also Must Cut Down At Least

Why Bruce Lee

Because he is the triumph of mind over body...  because he is faster than the rest of us .... because he is cocky and cool and he can afford to be .... because he is human and yet superhuman at the same time ... because he is just like us with faults and all and yet he is a higher being ... because he brought us beauty in movements and reflexes ... because he can be the most intense person in the room and his focus can be soul-penetrating ... because he showed us the extent of human potential ...

Below is a  FOOTAGE of Bruce Lee playing ping pong with normal humans. My God, the focus, the assuredness, the skill, being one with your instrument, mind blowing ... but is it real ... it even looked real ...



Sigh ... and we all wanted it to be true and real .... but Bruce Lee is still Bruce Lee no matter what


Bruce Lee Plays Ping Pong With Nunchucks — The Truth Revealed!


by: Garr Ovard    Profile     Share: bruce lee plays ping pong
Thursday, December 22, 2011

Bruce Lee (left) completing a roundhouse kick as he pelts a ping pong ball into oblivion with his nunchucks. Photo: Still from video. All copyrights belong to their respective owners.

First of all, you may be wondering what an article about Bruce Lee playing ping pong with nunchucks is doing on a kids books site. There are 2 reasons. One, what kid wouldn’t love to see a video of Bruce Lee playing ping pong with nunchucks? Two, I wrote this article long before I re-branded my site to focus on kids books, and I didn’t want to disappoint all of my readers who have linked to this page. Now for the fun stuff…

I seriously thought I’d seen it all. Then a friend of mine shared this video on Facebook. Seriously, nunchucks? If you’ve never seen Bruce Lee then you need to watch this video right now. If you have seen Bruce Lee then you’ll probably laugh and shake your head as you watch him effortlessly whack ping pong balls with nunchucks — not to mention the fact that his TWO opponents are freakishly good at ping pong. Amazing.

PART OF THE TRUTH
Now that you’ve been blown away I can tell you part of the truth. This video is a promotional video made to promote the Nokia N96 Bruce Lee edition phone, a $1,290 mobile device — approximately 8,788 Chinese yuan — available only in Hong Kong and China. Apparently it’s been a very successful viral campaign.

Nokia N96 Bruce Lee Edition Mobile Phone
Nokia N96 Bruce Lee Edition Mobile Phone. Photo

Bruce Lee Mobile Phone Accessories
Bruce Lee Mobile Phone Accessories. Photo

Countless blogs and Websites, including the official Nokia blog, are trying to figure out if this is an actual video of Bruce Lee. But all the author of the post on the official Nokia blog has to say is “Oh, and, the speculation since this was released has been rife as to whether or not the video is real, faked using CGI or faked using a Bruce Lee impersonator. We don’t know either, but we’ll endeavor to find out.”

Is it Bruce or not? Some Bruce Lee fans swear this is not Bruce Lee because his body proportions are not correct and he didn’t do his famous 1 inch punch. Others say it’s definitely the “Little Dragon” and that Nokia inserted digital footage of the master himself into the video. There’s even a “Making of the Bruce Lee Ping Pong” video on YouTube that disappoints. It shows nothing of the making of the video but commentary from a random actor who says inserting Bruce Lee into campaigns like this only adds to his legacy. As of this writing there is nothing on snopes.com except debate.

MY QUEST FOR TRUTH
So what is one to do when even the source is shrouded in secrecy? I decided to do what I hadn’t seen anyone else do.

First I used Google to translate “Bruce Lee” into simplified Chinese.

Bruce Lee in simplified Chinese = 李小龙

Next, armed with modern linguistic translation power I went to the Chinese Nokia Website (via Google’s translator) and entered the Chinese characters into the the search bar. Nothing. However, searching for “N96” in English produced the non-Bruce Lee phone product page, which did not translate very well since most of the characters were graphics.

HUNT DOWN THE ART DIRECTOR
Since the official Nokia bloggers wouldn’t fess up, the original Flash site is now nothing but a junk site, and the Internet Wayback machine offered nothing but blank screens, I had no choice but to find the agency that created the viral in the first place. Why hadn’t I thought of that before? It seemed like such an obvious solution.

Bingo.

Created by JWT Beijing, the Bruce Lee Ping Pong viral ad was an instant success. After only 24 hours the 10 second teaser had generated 700,000 views. 2 days later the full spot ran with a product shot and URL directing people to a microsite where they could order the limited edition phone.

In this interview with Agency.Asia, Chief Creative Officer, Polly Chu, gracefully dodges Agency.Asia’s attempt to elicit information as to whether the ad was fake. But she finally had this to say:

“Yes, we discussed with the director how to make it look like a never-seen-before secret footage of Bruce Lee. The director took a great effort to study Bruce Lee and found the right talent. We used an up and coming local Chinese director whose passion could be seen in every second of the film.”

So now you’ve heard it straight from the Chief Creative Officer. They were trying to make it look like something it wasn’t; and, after studying Bruce Lee, they found the “right talent”.

Clearly this is a brilliant example of viral creative — interesting enough to spread like wildfire and controversial enough to stir passionate debate among its viewers.

Well done JWT Beijing.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Determination and Focus

The strength of the human spirit always confounds me. Determination and focus. Its not that we can do all things, but we certainly can do most things we put our minds to. Naturally people will say "well, I really really want to be rich", can I do that? I don't think that will happen to everyone even if you have the best teacher or motivational coaches, but at least you would have gave it your best shot. Isn't that most important ... that you have aimed for the stars, pulled back an arrow the best you can and gave it your best shot ... rather than wishing upon a star and slumping back to your regular humdrum activity.

This guy's a champ.  .... Just do it ... you'd be amazed at what you can achieve.

Dog Imitates Baby ... Too Cute

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Significant Upgrades To Murasaki System

We have had some teething problem early on as we did not expect more than 1,000 trial users would jam our system in the first week. As promised, effective IMMEDIATELY, the load and response time would be cut down from the usual 4-10 seconds per click to less than 2 seconds.

How - Instead of loading over 1,000 stocks ... when you use Murasaki ts on your PC/desktop/notebook, by default it will load just the TOP 300 stocks sorted by M Index (Murasaki Index) and BRH Index, the two most used indicators. We call this the LITE VERSION.  You can switch back to view ALL STOCKS by using the drop down menu on the right of your screen.

Further queries, please contact us on: 1800 88 3788

http://www.murasaki.co/tradesensor/welcome.mx





We are very excited when we tested the new version on our IPADs, IPhones and other smartphones (including Samsung). The load times were even faster. But bear in mind that owing to the size of the gadgets, we have to trim down the number of stocks that you can view.

IPAD/Tablet users - When you use Murasaki ts, you will see just the TOP 100 stocks ranked by M Index and BRH Index. Somewhat less than the 300 on PC/notebook, but its still going to be more than sufficient. Please note that you WILL NOT be able to load ALL STOCKS on IPADs or tablets.

Smartphone Users - Owing to the technical specifications and limitations, when you use Smartphones, the system will load only the TOP 50 stocks  by M Index and BRH Index. Though not entirely ideal, its the next best thing when you are on the go.

Please use CHROME or SAFARI browser.



Smartphone Layout (Chrome)




Smartphone Layout (Mozilla Firefox)




Final note, all subscribers may ONLY sign into one device/gadget at one time, so please remember to log out of one device before signing onto another.

- How To Stop A Nightmare - Too Lovely & Warm For Words

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Singapore Water Industry, Thanks To You Know Who



Saturday, 10 November 2012 06:34

S'pore - thanks to Malaysia's Dr M, our water industry is now worth $ 9 BILLION!

Written by  mevotex
Fresh water has always been a precious resource to Singapore. Being a tiny island with high urban population constrained by its land size, modern Singapore never have enough water of its own to support its population, but this is about to change....
In 1927, Singapore signed a water agreement with Johor to construct a pipeline transporting raw water from Johor to Singapore. During the Battle of Singapore in 1942, the pipeline was destroyed, which left Singapore with water reserves that could last at most two weeks. According to Lee Kuan Yew, this was one of his motives to envision water self-sufficiency for Singapore later when he became the city-state's Prime Minister.
Immediately after the British awarded self-governance in 1959, the Singaporean government under Lee signed 2 water agreements with Malaya in 1961 and 1962. Under these agreements, Singapore will build two water treatment plants in Singapore and a new, expanded pipeline from Johor at its expenses. Singapore will also supply treated water to Johor at far below the cost of treating the water, and in return, Malaya would also supply raw water to Singapore below market prices. The agreements would last till 2011 and 2061 respectively.
In 1965, when Singapore was expelled from the Malaysian Federation, it received the first water threat from then Malaysian Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman, who said that "if Singapore’s foreign policy is prejudicial to Malaysia’s interests, we could always bring pressure to bear on them by threatening to turn off the water in Johor".
Mahathir tried to take advantage
In response, Singapore began to construct more water schemes on the island throughout the 1970s. This include the damming of river estuaries to allow for greater storage volumes, which resulted in larger artificial reservoirs that collect water from carefully managed catchment areas. These reservoirs would later be responsible for 20% of Singapore's water needs in 2012.
But as Singapore began to rapidly industrialize, the amount became insufficient. Thus in 1982 the city-state was interested to build a dam on the Johor River in Malaysia and an associated new water treatment plant there, with the construction costs all paid by Singapore, in exchange, Malaysia was to allow Singapore to purchase more than the 250 million gallons of water per day as negotiated in the 1962 agreement.
Malaysia's Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad however, decided to make it difficult for Singapore. After six years of difficult negotiations, the 2 countries finally signed the agreement that allowed the construction of the dam. It was a heavy price for Singapore, who agreed to pay RM320 million as compensation for the permanent loss of use of the land and its associated revenue, a premium of RM18,000 per hectare of land, and an annual rent of RM30 for every 1,000 square foot of the land. The cost of building and maintaining the dam would be borne by Singapore, and upon the expiration of water deals, both the dam and the treatment plant are to be returned to Malaysia.
Mahathir believed that Singapore couldn't survive without Malaysia's water
Emboldened by this victory, Mahathir mistakenly believed that he had caught Singapore's main weakness. In 2000, attempts to re-negotiate with Malaysia to secure water supply beyond 2061 failed, and in 2003, Malaysia again warned Singapore that once the first treaty expired in 2011, the water prices would be raised by 200 times from 3 sen per 1,000 gallons to RM6.25. The government of Singapore decided that, instead of paying a higher price and continue its water dependence on Johor, it will go all-out to achieve water-sufficiency.
But Kuan Yew said NO!
The first thing Singapore did was to invest heavily in water technologies and gathered the world's most renowned water management scientists into the island. Academics, researchers, scientists and experts from across the globe were invited to Singapore to help it devise a water solution. Desalination and recycled water were identified. Utilizing advanced technologies, Singapore proceed to construct one of the world's largest desalination plant in 2005, now accounted for 10% of the country's water needs. Singapore's second plant, even bigger, is scheduled to complete in 2013, providing another 10%.
Desalination removes salt and other minerals from sea, turning sea water into fresh water. There is almost no controversy on this. The issues come when dealing with recycled water. By that it means waste water, including those from toilets and drains, is to be purified back for use. The concerns lay on whether all harmful materials, pathogens or micro-organisms could be effectively removed.
Lee Kuan Yew Water Prize was established to award $300,000 for scientists of any nationalities who made breakthrough in water treatment technologies and brought them to Singapore. In 2003, Singapore started its first wastewater recycling plant. Under constant advices and supervision from scientists and researchers, by 2012, the country's 5 wastewater plants successfully marketed themselves and provide enough clean water to meet 30% of the island's needs.
‘Public acceptance is not guaranteed at the start. Recycled water has been rejected in Australia, where people term it ‘yuck’ water,’ said Dr Eduardo Araral, assistant dean of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore. ‘Singaporeans accepted it both because they are pragmatic and because they trust the Government’s promise that it is safe to drink,’ he added.
In 2006, Singapore identified the commercial value of water and environmental technologies, especially to water-scarce Middle East, North Africa and various First World nations, and also countries who currently lack proper and effective water treatment system. The government invested an initial $330 million to promote the new industry and to make Singapore a potential global hub for water research and development. Since 2008, the city-state hosts the Singapore International Water Week, a key event for the global water industry, every year.
Water sufficiency to exceed 70%
Over the years, Singapore has turned what used to be a scarcity into its strength and now the water industry is seen as a new growth sector for the country. The government's commitment to industrial promotion, easy access to research funds, and readily available talents, help built up a new robust water industries in Singapore amid the European financial crisis.
Kow Juan Tiang, group director for Environment & Infrastructure Solutions at IE Singapore, said: “If you look at the water industries in Singapore, it encompasses companies from many countries. Our financial sector worked closely with those companies venturing overseas here for projects to secure technology, solution, and most importantly, money financing, at a competitive advantage compared to otherwise in (crisis-laden) Europe.”
Goh Chee Kiong, director of Cleantech Building & Infrastructure Solutions at Economic Development Board, said: “What is helping this sector is the fact that Singapore has a vibrant manufacturing industry comprising chemicals, pharmaceuticals, semiconductor, oil and gas, and they are becoming prove points and demonstration sites for water companies to utilize their technology in Singapore before scaling up to the rest of the world.”
The push to develop the industry has drawn attention from some of the world's largest companies like General Electric and Siemens, who invested and created local water companies such as Hyflux that have expanded overseas. "What they are looking to do is create a virtual market for the water business which is much larger than Singapore," said Mr Glen Daigger, chief technology officer of CH2M Hill, an US-based industry consulting firm. "Singapore's ambition to become a water technologies hub in Asia is now a step closer."
With technology as the key driver, the water industries in Singapore experienced strong growth. In just five years, Singapore was propelled from a water-challenged nation to an internationally-recognised name in the global water community - with its water industry blossomed to over 100 companies. The city-state successfully built up a vibrant water industry cluster, with operations which span the value chain, including R&D centres, equipment suppliers, system integrators and EPC firms, project developers and financing organizations.
In 2011, Singapore's water sufficiency rose to 60%. At the same time the 1961 water agreement with Malaysia expired. Singapore informed Johor it would not be renewing the agreement. The next focus would be on total self-sufficiency before 2061, the date when the second agreement lapsed.
Singapore's water sufficiency to top 70% next year, on track for self-sufficient in 2061

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Murasaki Coming To Ipoh, JB, Seremban and Melaka ...



KLANG VALLEY
EventsDateDayTimeVenueRegister Now!
Master Class
27th November 2012Tuesday12:30 pmStarbucks Coffee, Tropicana City Mall Petaling Jaya1800 88 3788
Master Class
29th November 2012Thursday12:00 pmGloria Jeans Coffees, Kenanga International Building Jalan Sultan Ismail1800 88 3788
Master Class
29th November 2012Thursday1:30 pmGloria Jeans Coffees, Kenanga International Building Jalan Sultan Ismail1800 88 3788


JOHOR
EventsDateDayTimeVenueRegister Now!
Master Class
28th November 2012Wednesday12:30 pmStarbucks AEON Tebrau City Shopping Centre1800 88 3788
Master Class
28th November 2012Wednesday2:30 pmStarbucks AEON Tebrau City Shopping Centre1800 88 3788
MELAKA
EventsDateDayTimeVenueRegister Now!
Master Class
1st December 2012Saturday11:00 amStarbucks Dataran Pahlawan Melaka Megamall1800 88 3788
SEREMBAN
EventsDateDayTimeVenueRegister Now!
Master Class
1st December 2012Saturday3.00 pmStarbucks JUSCO Seremban 21800 88 3788
PERAK
EventsDateDayTimeVenueRegister Now!
Master Class
24th November 2012Saturday12:30 pmIndulgence Restaurant, 14 Jalan Raja DiHilir, Ipoh1800 88 3788
Master Class
24th November 2012Saturday2:00 pmIndulgence Restaurant, 14 Jalan Raja DiHilir, Ipoh1800 88 3788

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Greece Issue Headed For A Solution In 6 Days

Greece's international lenders failed for the second week running to agree how to get the country's debt down to a sustainable level and will have a third go at resolving their most intractable problem in six days' time. After nearly 12 hours of talks through the night during which myriad options were discussed, eurozone finance ministers, the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank failed to reach a consensus, without which emergency aid cannot be disbursed to Athens.


However the markets should be taking the following comments more closely:

"We are close to an agreement but technical verifications have to be undertaken, financial calculations have to be made and it's really for technical reasons that at this hour of the day it was not possible to do it in a proper way and so we are interrupting the meeting and reconvening next Monday," Eurogroup chairman Jean-Claude Juncker told reporters.

"There are no major political disagreements," he said.

There appears to be no other way except for the lenders to somehow come up with a solution for the Greece debacle.

Nonetheless, sharemarkets around the world reacted negatively, while the euro extended its fall against the US dollar in response. A document prepared for the meeting  declared that Greece's debt cannot be cut to 120 percent of GDP by 2020, the level deemed sustainable by the IMF, unless euro zone member states write off a portion of their loans to Greece. The 15-page document, circulated among ministers, set out in black-and-white how far off-track Greece is in reducing its debt to the IMF-imposed target, from a level of around 170 per cent of GDP now.

The document set out various ways Greece's debt could be reduced between now and 2020, but concluded they would not be enough without eurozone creditors taking a hit on their own holdings - something Germany and others have said would be illegal.



The document did say Greek debt could fall to 120 per cent of GDP two years later - in 2022 - without having to impose any losses on euro zone member states or forcing through a buy-back of Greek debt from private-sector bondholders. But International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde rejected such an extension at similar talks last week. Without any corrective measures the document said Greek debt would be 144 per cent in 2020 and 133 per cent in 2022, figures first reported exclusively by Reuters last week.

The view of the IMF, which has played a role in both Greek bailouts so far, is critical since it provides international legitimacy and credibility for the efforts the euro zone is making. If the IMF were to withdraw its support for the bailout programmes, it could have a deeply damaging market impact.
The document appeared designed in part to convince the IMF that Greek debt could be made sustainable just two years behind schedule if only it would soften its stance.

It remains possible that Lagarde could provide further wiggle room, but she is believed to favour the idea of eurozone member states taking a writedown on some of the loans extended to Greece in order to stick to the 120 per cent in 2020 goal.

Among the main measures under consideration to bring Greece's debt burden down as rapidly as possible is a debt buy-back under which Greece would offer to purchase bonds from private investors at a discount to their nominal value.

Several options are under consideration, officials have said and the document makes clear, including using about 10 billion euros to buy back bonds at between 30 and 35 cents in the euro.
There are also proposals to reduce the interest rate on loans already extended by euro zone countries to Greece, to impose a moratorium on interest payments and lengthen the maturities on loans, all of which would cut the debt burden.

Pressure for the eurozone to come up with a solution is high not just because Greece is running out of money and financial markets want a dependable solution, but because Athens has initiated virtually all the steps demanded of it to cut spending, raise taxes and overhaul its economy.

"Greece has delivered. Now it's up to us to deliver," Juncker said.

Because of the latest delay, the ministers were unable to give a go-ahead for the next tranche of up to 44 billion euros of emergency funds to be paid to Athens. The payment would provide short-term relief to Athens, but it is long-term debt that is the core issue.

Hence it looks its going to hurt the EU more if they fail to come up with something for Greece, having seen Greece doing its part already. All in, despite the negativity surrounding the developments, its actually a positive because it all points to a MUST solution in 6 days.


Penang Day Trip

Had to wake up at the god forsaken hour of 6am this morning to get ready to catch the 8am flight on Firefly to Penang. Doing 3 Masterclasses today, all at Paragon Gurney, which is a very nice place really.




















So what to do, early mah, go for breakie at Lam Heng coffeeshop @ Macalister Road. Gawd, the coffee shop is even smaller than I last remembered. But we were greeted nicely by the "sisters" which was against the "grumpy aunties branding" that they had. 




Wanted hor fun with mee, and naturally they only sell kuayteow. Purists will tell me its called charkwayteow not charkwayanythingwant. Taste wise still brilliant. Lighter than normal because they rely less on dark soy and more on light soya plus good wokhei. RM5 a plate and a pretty small plate, but I think its worth it cause its duck egg and the prawns are pretty chubby and fresh. 9/10.



Can't eat everything in the shop, so settled for prawn mee. Its a small bowl but also costs RM5 which is expensive even by KL standards. Taste wise 8/10, pretty good but value wise is 3/10 as I think Champs version of the prawn mee matches on taste and even when its at RM20, its still great value at Champs. They give big big whole prawns and real full ribs, plus their chilli is to die for. Champs wins hands down.



There is the lobak place at the front of the coffee shop, couldn't eat anything more but the freshly fried stuff smelled damn good. Obviously fresh oil.




















Arrived early at Paragon Gurney, shocked to find that my favourite yoghurt place actually can be a full store here in Penang. In KL all we get are kiosks. Damn!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Songs That I Keep Going Back To

There are certain songs that you keep going back to, maybe they are not so popular now, heck, some were not even that popular then ... but these songs meant a lot to me. I never tire of hearing them, trouble is finding them, locating or even trying to download them properly in the first place.

There are songs that define a generation, I guess these songs defines me. These may be just pop songs with simple melodies and lyrics but they stayed with me.

The first one was an obscure hit back in the late 80s by one funnily named group called 1927. Every time I hear it, goosebumps, the soaring chorus and even cheesy lyrics but somehow it works ...



You Belong To Me was a major hit in the early 60s or late 50s I believe, the melody was very good but the way they sung it was too "big band Buble style". I always knew it needed to be toned down to a folk song for the lyrics and melody to shine through more. Kate Busby's rendition was spot on. Always mesmerising and reflective.



There was a movie that captured my imagination when I was pretty young. Its called Voices, a guy falling for a deaf girl, sounds formulaic but its not. The haunting theme song always brings me back to simpler times when good means good and bad means bad. The song is called I Will Always Wait For You by Burton Cummings.



My all time favourite song by The Beatles is a little known song by them, I Will. Ever since I heard it I was swooned by the purity of the melody, so simple, uncomplicated and the right lyrics. Funny thing was I even thought to myself that this would be the song to be played if ever I was to get married. The Beatles version was sublime, but Alison Kraus' version is even better with a long instrumental intro before letting the lyrics revel in the wondrous melody. Guess people will start using this song for their upcoming weddings after hearing about this from me ... sigh.



This is a quirky pick I know, many would not even consider John Travolta to be a singer but he was, and way before Saturday Night Fever and Grease, he did this wonderful movie based on a true story The Boy In The Plastic Bubble. The kid's body does not have an immune system and he has to live in a germ free platic bubble ... till he fell in love and risked it all breaking out of his bubble. Song written by Paul Williams, What Would They Say.



Cynicism vs Wonderment vs Cool vs Detached

I always tell people they need to go and travel every now and then. When you pluck yourself away from your 'box', you see a lot of things differently. Life is not how long you live but how well you live. Soon we will all be dead, if we are lucky, some will suffer prolonged effects of ageing or sickness, and you wonder why.

I used to be a lot more cynical about things, it usually takes a lot more from me to get excited or enthused over things and even people. You think you have seen it all. Everything is just shades of grey (no pun intended).

When you live well, you are opening up yourself to "wonderment" and being zestful. Some may think its the antithesis of being cool. People who meet me for the first few times will think I am cool, cool to the extent of not being warm and hard to please. Thats just the exterior, trouble is I am usually thinking not trying to look cool or reserved. 

Being detached robs us of the the joys in living well. Friends show you photos of their kids, you shrug your shoulders, everybody's got their own kids, everybody's kids are cute and wonderful (to them). Insanely, if you open up more and be more empathetic, you will embrace life and the joy in discovering and sharing. 

Life is not meant to be easy. Its the same for everyone else. The grass is always greener. Do not worry if you are a half empty glass person or a half full glass person, just drink the bloody water and enjoy quenching your thirst.

Being cynical is OK when it comes to business matters, it pays to ask pertinent questions, its a skill we learn to protect ourselves. Use it more sparingly when it comes to people. If they turn out to be "bad apples", discard them, but embrace first.

If you think there are no more great things in life to get you excited over, if you think you have seen it all, you might as well go live in a cave, you are just existing. Talk to kids and be enthralled. Take in sights and be aware of their magnificence. Look into the eyes of your loved ones and be glad they stuck around with you. Have great conversations, give something of yourself. Immerse not detach. Live well, live strong.

Murasaki Masterclass In Penang and Ipoh

Back to the grindstone recharged. Due to good demand, we are now making our way to other cities. If you are in Penang and Ipoh, we will be there over the next few days. There is even a Mandarin Masterclass session in Penang.

www.murasaki.co

 
 
PERAK
EventsDateDayTimeVenueRegister Now!
Master Class
24th November 2012Saturday12:30 pmIndulgence Restaurant, 14 Jalan Raja DiHilir, Ipoh1800 88 3788
 
KLANG VALLEY
EventsDateDayTimeVenueRegister Now!
Master Class
20th November 2012Tuesday12:30 pmLewisGene, Solaris Mont Kiara1800 88 3788
Master Class
22nd November 2012Thursday12:30 pmStarbucks Coffee, SetiaWalk Puchong1800 88 3788
 
PENANG
EventsDateDayTimeVenueRegister Now!
Master Class
(English)
21st November 2012Wednesday12:00 pmThe Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Gurney Paragon, Penang1800 88 3788
Master Class
(中文)
21st November 2012Wednesday1:30 pmThe Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Gurney Paragon, Penang1800 88 3788
Master Class
(English)
21st November 2012Wednesday3:00 pmThe Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Gurney Paragon, Penang1800 88 3788