Friday, August 30, 2013

Facebook Makes Me Mad Sometimes (Updated)

Posted this back in 2011. Well, its been nearly 2 years since my Facebook rants ... and plenty of changes have passed then ...  I think the users have more than tripled or more ... and my FB friends have surged to just over 100, still manageable ... but the inherent silliness still prevails.

I can appreciate the wonders of Facebooking, to keep in touch and to share, in a manner that is more intimate and profound than say just by emails.

After sitting at a computer typing all day, the last thing I want to do when I get home is sit in front of another computer so that I can read the fascinating facts and fancies on "25 Random Things About Me" from 3 of my friends.

I also don't feel the need to constantly update an entire network of friends about the daily minutiae of my life. My life is to be lived, not to be updated. And the mf box "What's on your mind" ... I mean if I tell you what is really on mind mind, I would have no friends left??!! I mean, how to say "I have been thinking of screwing with the cleaning lady ten minutes ago"??!!

The silly mf strategy games they play ... so you have grown the world's largest cabbage, go and eat it yourself.... so you are looking for carrots and manure, fuck me silly if I am bothered to even care. My eyes have glazed over hundreds of time whenever I open my Facebook. Soon, I will be doing a Linda Blair, my eyeballs will make a 360 degrees revolution from too much eyes rolling.

(Coffee Bean sure did not have locals at management level when they issue these cups in Malaysia and Singapore ... does not quite have the same meaning)

Then, there are the friends who will update you at least 5 times a day, as if sooo many people are so interested in the most mundane aspects of your lives. I mean, I seriously get postings such as: "... sigh, just wondering about nothing ..." I mean, seriously, go fuck yourself silly, even your own mum would be cursing under her breath. Stop the narcissist in you, no more "look at me, look at me...".

Don't just simply whack without offering solutions, I always say. Well, I hope Facebook will make all users to flag all their comments to 5 categories: if you are making a senseless comment that only your wildest fan or stalker will enjoy hearing, flag that as "1"; if its about something that is mildly important or things you found funny from some obscure site, then click "2"; if its and opinion that some may enjoy, then click "3"; if its a major development in your personal life or career, click "4"; if its absolutely must be viewed by all your friends, then click "5". Your friends , like me, who have a low tolerance of everything and anything, will possibly allow comments and updates that are "4" or "5" to filter to my account.

If by chance you have a nonsensical update and you put that as a "4", I guarantee you I will go and write a load of b.s. on your fucking wall for not being able to decipher what is "value add commentary / opinion" and what is crap.

For now, I cannot go and tell all my friends that they are idiots for writing what they wrote cause its so prevalent. Till today, after nearly one year, I still have less than 40 friends (now just over 100), and proud of it.

I won't be wasting time 'poking' cyber friends. Pick up the phone/mobile and call to ask them out for lunch or dinner, poke here poke there for fucks!!??

People make friends like they are collecting sand, ... "today I made another 4 friends", ... well, fuck me, I did not make four new friends the whole of last month in real life. It waters down the concept of who is a friend, and what a friend is to you. That definition is getting shallower by the day with the advent of the internet.

I guess my plea to my friends is to try and make Facebook work for us, to bring us closer together, not to agitate and piss the shit out of others, and waste our time and resources over inane stuff. Use Facebook as a tool, if you let Facebook take over your life, then you are the tool. Enjoy and maintain relations with family, friends and relatives ... in person as much as you can.


This Is Called Wit - AbFab

The big difference between American humour and British humour, skilfully exemplified here, dry, sardonic, cutting, sarcastic, word play to the max ... from the ever brilliant John Cleese.



The English are feeling the pinch in relation to recent events in Syria and have therefore raised their security level from "Miffed" to "Peeved." Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to "Irritated" or even "A Bit Cross." The English have not been "A Bit Cross" since the blitz in 1940 when tea supplies nearly ran out. Terrorists have been re-categorized from "Tiresome" to "A Bloody Nuisance." The last time the British issued a "Bloody Nuisance" warning level was in 1588, when threatened by the Spanish Armada.

The Scots have raised their threat level from "Pissed Off" to "Let's get the Bastards." They don't have any other levels. This is the reason they have been used on the front line of the British army for the last 300 years.

The French government announced yesterday that it has raised its terror alert level from "Run" to "Hide." The only two higher levels in France are "Collaborate" and "Surrender." The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France 's white flag factory, effectively paralyzing the country's military capability.

Italy has increased the alert level from "Shout Loudly and Excitedly" to "Elaborate Military Posturing." Two more levels remain: "Ineffective Combat Operations" and "Change Sides."

The Germans have increased their alert state from "Disdainful Arrogance" to "Dress in Uniform and Sing Marching Songs." They also have two higher levels: "Invade a Neighbour" and "Lose."

Belgians, on the other hand, are all on holiday as usual; the only threat they are worried about is NATO pulling out of Brussels ..

The Spanish are all excited to see their new submarines ready to deploy. These beautifully designed subs have glass bottoms so the new Spanish navy can get a really good look at the old Spanish navy.

Australia, meanwhile, has raised its security level from "No worries" to "She'll be right, Mate." Two more escalation levels remain: "Crikey! I think we'll need to cancel the barbie this weekend!" and "The barbie is cancelled." So far no situation has ever warranted use of the last final escalation level.

John Cleese ,
British writer, actor and tall person

And as a final thought - Greece is collapsing, the Iranians are getting aggressive, and Rome is in disarray. Welcome back to 430 BC.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Lead A Purposeful Life

No matter your background, rich or poor .... the moment you hear Nick shares his life and his message, you will have tears because he connects with us on so many levels.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Try Dissing Feng Shui Market Predictions Again!!!

Well, you can argue and debate, but man ... the CLSA feng shui predictor has more rights than wrongs ... and eerily correct so far this year. Hope the chart continues to be correct, which means a swift rebound.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Being Malaysian

As the day draws closer to celebrating another Merdeka and Malaysia Day, the overall population runs the risk of not knowing our roots. How we came to be as a nation, as a group of people with so much shared history and legacy. As less and less of our population remember the time when they were around during the torturous Emergency years of 1948-1953 ... our country runs the risk of losing the very fabric of our existence.

As we marvel on grand property projects now, we talk of five figure a month jobs, we talk about traveling the world, buying the latest fashionable product, argue about share prices, look at your children living a normal life  ... all that would be very different had the 5-6 years of history turned out differently, and it could very well have.

I know all cinemas will be playing the national anthem for a week leading to Merdeka Day ... just how much of chest thumping will that bring. If you are not already feeling like a Malaysian, that tactic will do very little for you. You are not going to say, wow, I feel more Malaysian already. Sloganeering and antics are just so pathetic.

It would do brilliantly if we were to feature the following documentary by History Channel to all movie goers. How about broadcasting it 3x a day 7 days leading up to Merdeka? After watching it, you will feel very different about being a Malaysian. We are not that worthy ... so many army personnel, police officers, civilians, foreign soldiers, Gurkhas ... so many lost their lives to preserve a chance to lead a simple democratic way of life. So much collateral damage.

To have that 5-6 years of undeclared war following the horrendous Japanese occupation ... calling that period tough would be unfair and minimising the severe hardships all Malaysians who lived through that period. And that was just 60-70 years back.

We see remembrances of old foggies at graveyards in the papers every now and then, we flip flippantly through those news articles, we do not bother to even finish reading it ... In places like God's Little Acre @ Batu Gajah, the grand sacrifices by them allow us to be where we are. There are still many living heroes ... and they could very well shout now that the rest of the nation has been largely ungrateful, they could scream that if it was not for their sacrifices, we'd  not get to enjoy life as we know it now. They could, but they would not ... if respect has to be demanded, its not respect but a filtered down version.

Watch the documentary, make your children watch the documentary, be a true Malaysian. We should all know how we got here ... thus far.

p/s you know what is sad, this You Tube video has only 5,000 views ... yet we have hundreds of thousands for the cute dogs and cats or other inane stuff

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Funnies From China

English is a hard language when its not your mother tongue ... things get lost in translation sometimes. In Malaysia it happens, in particular when we get zombies trying to do the English subtitles for movies. These are from China, in now way am I singling them out. Japanese ones are funny as well ... there are also the ones from India, Indonesia, Thailand ... but one at a time.

In case of emergency...

Freshly caught, I hope!

Can I get a fucking heart exam, too?
Some guys (assholes) should really go to the second room.

Thanks for offering.

Lonely Planet said it was a must-see.
Hey, might as well be honest while you are at it!

Hey, you might as well be graceful about it.

Ah, maybe we should wait til they're done.
The police/army are so considerate.

We certainly need this sign in Malaysia ... car showrooms and Pavilion.

Awww ... shucks.

I heard it's protected by UNESCO.

Maybe the oven was broken?
I will definitely try that!!!

Cheap, fast & easy.
What an awesome gift for some of my friends the next time I travel to China.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Constructive, Vindictive Or Destructive

I am all for constructive analysis and commentary. An open progressive society should always have that. However, is our society somehow more like the cartoon below ... always finding something negative to say, ... never considering the backdrop or context. It is easy to just criticise and complain, somehow by shading something darker, it makes our pitiful life bearable. In much the same way, we run the danger of branding ourselves by what we do not like, we have no problem telling others what we don't like. How do people describe you? Is it "oh, she doesn't like lamb dishes, she cannot stand Sungai Wang complex, she hates Justin Beiber,  ...." or is it "she loves dogs, she goes gaga for Baskin Robbins, she loves to climb hills ..."

Friday, August 16, 2013

Cooking With Dali - Curry Pork Ribs

How to go wrong with pork ribs? This is my adjusted, tweaked, simplified recipe that all can try at home.

All the ingredients are pictured here. Note that I only used half of the belacan in that white paper box. Oops, you can't see the candlenuts (buah keras).

I don't really like to measure much, mostly agak-agak and taste along the way. Generally, for about 1.5kg of pork ribs:
- 3-4 big sized potatoes (get the ones from Indonesia, softer and nicer)
- 2 stalks lemon grass
- 6 to 7 candlenuts
- small piece of belacan
- A1 rempah for meat  (3-4 tbs)
- 12 pieces of shallots
- 6 pieces of garlic cloves
- 5 to 6 dried chilli (cut up finely)
- curry leaves
- tumeric poweder (1 tbs)
- 1/2 cup coconut milk

First, put the cut up ribs in a plastic bag, throw in 1tsp sea salt and 1 tbs white pepper and make sure they get a good rubbing down. Put in 3 tbs corn flour, close the bag and shake liberally. Check to make sure all are covered with flour. Put in fridge for at least 2 hours, the longer the better.

Here comes the muscle part, into your pestle and mortar, gradually add shallots, garlic, candlenuts, dried chillies, tumeric powder ... at the same time ....

Lightly grill some belacan till dry and fragrant both sides, drop in belacan int mix and pound. Trick is not to pound the whole thing into a paste, when its about 3/4 done, thats fine, it gives out better texture and aromas.

Fry the pork ribs in oil till brown. Set aside.

Use about 5 tbs oil, its ok, you can scoop up excess oil later. You need oil to fry the ingredients. Throw in the pounded paste, fry for 2 minutes, throw in curry leaves and lemon grass (bruised), fry for another 2 minutes. Then put in the A1 rempah. Fry for another 2 minutes.

Put in the pork ribs and mix gently, can add one to two glasses of water so that the sauce covers the ribs. Slow fire for 45 minutes, turning every minute or so in order for the thing not to be burnt. See the diced potatoes on the side, fry that in medium heat in another wok till brown, set aside.

You are almost there, pour in half cup coconut milk. Add the potatoes. Last trick, put in two tbs of sugar to round off the taste, and 1tbs of soy sauce. Taste and adjust to your liking. Simmer another two minutes and you are done.

Previous cooking postings:

Monday, August 05, 2013

Asset Class Returns As At 31 July 2013

July delivered a strong month of rebounding prices for the major asset classes. The red ink that dominated the numbers for June gave way to across-the-board gains last month, with US stocks leading the way. 

Although recovery brought some relief to asset classes in July, US equities continue to dominate the horse race. The second-best performing asset class year to date, based on the definitions below: foreign developed-market stocks (MSCI EAFE), which climbed 9.6% so far in 2013. Even so, that’s less than half the increase for US stocks.
If you look at the YTD figures, the only asset classes up were US stocks by a long way, followed by other developed markets equities, US REITs, US high yield bonds, foreign high yield bonds ... take out the foreign stocks and bonds, its all US denominated assets. Safe to say the rest of the world has been deflating their economies. It is also safe to assume that the QE tapering has started way way ahead for non US assets.
Again we get to the situation whereby the sins of US printing press is hurting the rest of the world while the US economy goes largely unpunished due to their reserve status. The rest of the world knows it, the US knows it. Global central banks and governments alike are still holding or even buying US papers, thats why. Will any of them start to throw US Treasuries? Will they dare to do it? Not that they are afraid of the US but the repercussions to the global economy. How bad is it to have a 20% correction in USD and a 20% correction is US stocks?
While we harp on US banks and big insurers being too big to fail, the entire US economy is exactly that, too big to fail ... to the rest of the world.

Things To Do During Lockdown

All local councils, utility companies, construction firms (those with permission) and city planners in Malaysia should take the opportunity...