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21 February 2010

The Fourth Door - Part 2

In case anyone is wondering about the suddenly silence of the blog over the last few days, I was in Ta1wan.

Door #4. I have decided to step in. The meeting in Taiwan was to discuss terms as well as general work plan.

Well, looks like there is a slight change in plans in both location and scope.
Work-wise, I will handling a larger portfolio that will involve trade and marketing covering Asia-Pacific and the US, instead of just the two sides of the Ta1wan Strait.

As a result, I will not be deployed beyond Mordor. Well, not this year at the very least.

Instead it will be slightly nearer and much more metropolitan. Oh yes and less freezing too.

I shared this news with a friend of mine this afternoon and her first reaction was to ask me to be wary of the women there.

"Aiyoh, I tell you ah. You better be careful. It doesn't matter if you are interested in them or not. But hor, if one of them set her eyes on you hor, you are finished lor!", unquote.

*facepalm*

I think she meant that in the negative sense.

And that brings me to a joke about the ladies, told to me by a fellow expat many years ago.

Q: What do you do, if you are looking at them (the ladies) and you inadvertently blinked?
A: Check your wallet. 

I was able to laugh back then but now that it is going to be up close and personal, it somehow don't feel as funny anymore.

To be honest, I was considering Door #1 initially but as the days passed, I started to feel that the people behind that door were not sincere about the offer and that the earlier meetings were just one big charade of patronisation.

Screw them.

So make a guess. Where am I heading?

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Image Credit: http://www.gbgm-umc.org
- Voxeros


1. Sunflower left...
Monday, 22 February 2010 1:31 am
When I was reading all the doors you blog a couple weeks ago, I was thinking, it doesn't matter which door you eventually choose. Most imporatantly, I think, you will do your best in whatever door you step in.
Congratz!


2. JayWalk left...
Tuesday, 23 February 2010 6:05 pm :: 
Sunflower: Thanks. I hope everything will pan out well.

15 February 2010

Comfort Food


I am sure everyone has a comfort food or sorts. Some yearn for chocolate, others go for ice cream. Even a couple of girls I know *wink wink* craves the pearly white splendour of the steaming white rice.

Me? Well, my is a little unusual and may even make a few of you roll your eyes.

So what is it?

It's fried rice with curry gravy. Not just fried rice but fried rice with curry gravy.

I discovered this "dish" way back in 1981 where I was in Primary Four. I studied in Catholic High School (Primary School Section 小学部) back then and Primary Four was the only year for me where my classes are held in the Secondary School section (中学部) across the opposite side of Queen Street where The Church of St Peter & St Paul stood (and still standing till this very day).
It was recess time and everyone headed to the tuckshop (we don't call it canteen or cafeteria back in the day then. We ish old skool.).

So there was this stall run by the rice stall auntie selling char siew rice and fried rice. Then next to the counter there is this pot of curry gravy for us to pour curry gravy to our purchases.

I was intrigued by the fact that the other boys were all greedily scooping and pouring the curry gravy on anything. Yes, curry gravy even on char siew rice.

My curiosity got the better of me as I helped myself to the ladle and scooped two ladle-full of the curry goodness. Why 2 ladle-full and not 1 nor 3? I have no idea, I saw the other kids scooped two ladles of it and I just followed lor. What do I know? I was only 10 years old!

The taste was just heavenly and I was hooked ever since.

Fast forward to my National Service days and the year was 1990. I just finished 3 miserable months of Basic Military Service (BMT) and was posted to my new unit. Food back on Pulau Tekong was terrible. Rice were burned, and the kangkong vegetables were so salty, it was as if they washed their vegetables in sea water in order to conserve fresh water and seasoning.

Fortunately, our meal times were so short, that nobody from my Company actually have time to even sit down to eat. We swallow our food as we walked from the serving station to the washing area. Yes, it was that rushed. We didn't need to sit down as we were eating so fast that by the time, we reached the washing area, we would have already gobbled up every morsel of food in our pathetic steel trays.

3 months later and I was posted to my active unit where I served out the rest of my NS days.

I remembered very clearly my first day. I didn't know anyone there as I was the lone private posted to that particular unit. It was utterly sianz to the max.

The only joy I received was to know that eating in the cookhouse was optional as we are free to head over to the canteen for our meals, which I was more than glad to pay as opposed to the free cookhouse food catered for every soldier.

I ate fried rice with curry gravy for 5 consecutive days of lunch AND dinner.

The rest of the camp who were also checking me, the new guy out, thought I was some weirdo!
So what is your comfort food?

p.s. I tried looking for pictures of Fried Rice in Curry Gravy to put up in this entry but to no avail. I guess I was right in the sense that this recipe was tad too bizarre for most.

Image Credits: http://www.copykat.com; http://mw2.google.com
 
- Voxeros

1. Hamie left...
Monday, 15 February 2010 11:50 am
i love Canto soups after a darn tired day. or any day. too bad i'm not a Canti (LOL) else me mom would know how to make Canto soup. sibei sian. hokkien donch acknowledge the good of long-hours soups siah.


2. Pam left...
Monday, 15 February 2010 5:50 pm
at the moment, anything that reminds me of Sg is comfort food... from prata (and the thin watery curry!), to chicken rice, to wanton mee, to mee pok, to mee goreng.... heck even the A&W root beer makes me think fondly of home.


3. JayWalk left...
Monday, 15 February 2010 6:01 pm :: 
Hamie:: Yeah the cantonese are famous for their 煲汤 and 糖水.

Pam: Very soon I may end up to be in a similar situation where any Singaporean food would be good enough. Le sigh.


4. Pam left...
Tuesday, 16 February 2010 6:51 pm
oh??! pray tell why??


5. Ruok left...
Tuesday, 16 February 2010 9:42 pm
We always thought you were a bit queer back then ... :P


6. JayWalk left...
Sunday, 21 February 2010 7:58 pm :: 
Pam: Tuned in to my next blog entry. All shall be revealed.

ruok: *bish*
 

12 February 2010

The Temasek Review Of Mark Chow


For those who are unfamiliar with Mark Chow's molest case, read the related article below.

The way I see it, he is not gay but just saying that to lessen the damage as a result of his molestation of his staff.

I supposed if one is gay then any attacks will be perceived as less sexual predatory and hence be viewed as a lesser charge?

Nice try but if I were the judge, I won't buy it. I would strike that off as a lame attempt to worm himself out of what he has done.

Ok. Enough of that.

The point of this entry is not about the case but rather about the headline deployed by The Temasek Review.

"YPAP Member".

Is there a need to mention his membership affiliation?

Seriously, what has his YPAP membership has to do with his molestation case? If nothing, then why bring this up?

I smell a smear.

It is ironic that in their "About Us" page, they claimed "...balanced and unbiased coverage..." and yet they come up with content like this.

Can't say much about quality there, now can we?

There are a lot of PAP bashing articles in this website (which is fine because we are all free to express our views), riding on emotions at a time when the people are quite unhappy with the current PAP gahmen.

But seriously, is the current PAP gahmen really so bad?

You and I both know that they are not perfect and even further from that in recent years but certainly not to the extent to warrant crucifixion. So what's with all the polar sentiments?

So. The $raits Times vs The Temasek Review.

I'd still read both but with equal measure of salt pinch as I feel the element of bullshit is about 6 ounces on one side and 170 grams on the other.

Image Credit: http://sin.stb.s-msn.com
- Voxeros

1. Ruok left...
Saturday, 13 February 2010 8:55 am
I agree. It's so hard to get unbiased views these days. That's why when I get to read one, I rejoice. Today sometimes have cutting views that are more objective. They used to have a lot more, but at least these view didn't totally disappear.


2. JayWalk left...
Sunday, 14 February 2010 8:57 pm :: 
ruok: I think at the end of the day, they too sell out to readership numbers.


3. starry left...
Saturday, 6 March 2010 3:13 pm
-_-" ex-bf is the PP handling this case.


4. JayWalk left...
Saturday, 6 March 2010 5:12 pm :: 
Starmist: Small world indeed.

10 February 2010

Vote Out PAP? I Don't Think So.


The above is a Youtube clip posted and possibly created by a certain Wendy Neo, urging Singaporeans to vote out the People's Action Party in the coming Singapore General Elections.

First and foremost, I DO NOT endorse nor approve this message.

It is my wish to vote in more opposition to have a more balance voice in Parliament but to vote out PAP is a tad too knee-jerk drastic. On the report card, the PAP has not exactly failed us but I want something above a mere C- grade. Hence a total overhaul of the Singapore Gahmen 未免动作太大了一点?

We want evolution. Not revolution.

I want the people of the nation to get rid of the freeloading useless under performing MPs who snuck into Parliament under the cloak of the GRC. In their place, we welcome good capable men and women to step forward, work hard and earn their seat in the Gahmen the rightful way. Then and only then will they appreciate the value of their position and remember the folks who had supported and put them there.

Think about it, do we even know if the new opposition is good enough to take over the entire Gahmen? Yes, we currently have a few good people in the opposing camp like Chiam See Tong, Low Thia Kiang, Sylvia Lim and perhaps Kenneth Jeyaratnam as well but certainly not enough in numbers to take over the Gahmen.

We have to be careful when we bring in alternative candidates. We cannot happy happy just bring in people for the sake of filling up the numbers.

I said time and again (read below),

Never Vote The Village Idiot Just To Spite The Arrogant Incumbent.

I am staunchly against the unfairness of the GRC concept to the extent to which I felt is downright cheating. Untested candidates sliding in on the coat tails of strong incumbents is cowardly.
I repeat. It's cowardly. Do we want cowards to lead us?

I apply the same yardstick to the opposition too. No one is to enter via the backdoor. Absolutely no one.

Let's bring back the 1-to-1 fights of the good old days. Let's bring back the Single-Seat Wards. Let them undergo the baptism of fire and not hide away like cowards. I believe this is the only way that we can be assured that the victor is one who is worthy to serve the interest of the people before self.
Even if it is an uncontested ward, let's put in a referendum and let people give their blessings to the walkover candidate.

This my friends, is democracy in its true spirit. 

- Voxeros

1. Pam left...
Wednesday, 10 February 2010 5:08 pm
interesting..... and I suppose these people think the unknown alternative is 'better'?? Surely we need to know who these alternatives are and how competent they are, before we can even vote them in??

2. Ruok left...
Thursday, 11 February 2010 1:32 am
yeah man, bring back the 1 on 1!!
3. Hamie left...
Thursday, 11 February 2010 2:10 am
i concur
4. JayWalk left...
Friday, 12 February 2010 12:38 am :: 
Pam: Even if unknown candidate, let the people have a say via their votes instead of smuggling under the cloak of strong incumbents. That way, if in the event we did voted in a dud, we can't complain coz we voted him in. Having said that, we can just as easily vote him out in the next election.

Bottom line is that the people gets to decide their future.

ruok & hamie: Yeah!

09 February 2010

Chinatown Heritage Centre & Singapore City Gallery


Had a meeting in the morning at China Square and thought since I was already out an in the area, why not check out the Chinatown Heritage Centre then the Red Dot Museum?

It was a short walk two streets away and not difficult to locate as they were prominent signs around.

If you are local, do ask for the relevant discounts. Otherwise, the entrance fee is SGD 10.00 and do not expect them to make the effort to ask. It's a nice place to step in especially when you are in the heart of noisy Chinatown. It was very refreshing to step into the suddenly quietness and not to mention away from the sweltering heat into air-conditioned bliss.

Slightly unfortunately for me, I was right behind a Primary school tour and the serenity was shattered by a hoard of excitable school kids with the teacher trying without much success to restore order among the children.

The place is quite enclosed as it was built within an existing old shop house. Overtaking them would not be an option as I would missed quite a chunk of the exhibits.

Then suddenly, all was quiet as though the whole group of teachers and students vanished into thin air.
I continued to walk on before I realised why.




Looks like the teachers herded the kids along rather hurriedly. LOL!

Well, let's just say I got the peace and quiet that I want for the rest of the tour. :)

CHINATOWN HERITAGE CENTRE
48 Pagoda Street Singapore 059207
Website: http://www.chinatownheritagecentre.sg/
Opening Hours:
9am to 8pm daily (last admission at 7pm)



Next on, I kept walking towards Maxwell Road towards Red Dot Museum when I remembered en route there is the URA Singapore City Gallery and decided to make a pit stop. An excellent decision, if I may proudly add.




It has a 3D map of Singapore detailing every single building currently standing on the island. Way cool.

I have to resist my utmost urge to want to climb onto the models and pretend to Godzilla and stomp my way through CBD. Haha.

Then I recalled a friend telling me to act like Ultraman and fight monsters but then hor, I think it would be too painful when I land my butt on these wooden model buildings.

Better to just stick to Godzilla lah. :P



SINGAPORE CITY GALLERY
45 Maxwell Road, The URA Centre, Singapore 069118
Website: http://www.ura.gov.sg/gallery
Opening hours:
Mondays to Saturdays 9.00am to 5.00pm
Closed on Sundays and public holidays.



Last stop, Red Dot Museum but unfortunately the place was closed.

Till the next visit before I blog about it then. Sorry! :(

Image Credit: http://lh5.ggpht.com
- Voxeros

1. Desiree left...
Thursday, 11 February 2010 4:10 pm
Found the museum i mentioned. Think it's called ISD Heritage Centre. You will find info as you google for it. It was an exclusive trip for me previously cos I went on a guided tour before it was launched - I think. But funny how I cannot find the directions to the centre. It's ISD after all. Hahaha


2. JayWalk left...
Friday, 12 February 2010 1:25 am :: 
Desiree: Yes, it is exclusive to civil service and school students. I managed to find their phone number and the number points towards Balestier area which leads me to conclude that it is located within the Ministry Of Home Affairs itself.

05 February 2010

David Saul Marshall

I stopped by the section dedicated to Singapore's First Chief Minister, David Saul Marshall (12 Mar 1908 ~ 31 Dec 1995) and it was here where I spent the most time during my earlier visit to the National Museum.

Ask any Singaporean kid who were the founding fathers of modern Singapore and don't be surprised if their answers cannot go beyond Mr Lee Kuan Yew.

Sadly, kids these days are under the impression that Singapore was built up single-handedly by our current Minister Mentor.

Prominent names like Toh Chin Chye, Goh Keng Swee, Rajaratnam and even Kandasamy, just to named a few were unjustly cast into the shadows.

Then we also have those that were not from the ruling party PAP. Names like Devan Nair and Lim Chin Siong, just to name a few as well fared worse as they shared even lesser of the Singapore history spotlight.
 
And then, there was David Marshall, who later moved on to set up the Worker's Party of today.

Granted that challengers from the opposition parties have different philosophies, they nevertheless also approached policies in the interest of Singapore, albeit via a different perspective that is not agreeable to the PAP.

In short, they were patriots too.


The above picture shows a pamplet urging constituents to vote for David Marshall.

Take clues from the pamphlet, I am guessing this is either for the 1959 General Elections where he lost in Cairnhill or the 1961 By-Elections where he won in Anson.

Anyway, I studied what they "stood for" as printed in the pamphlet and three words caught my eye.

Arrogance of Authority

Strangely how something that was drafted almost 50 years ago resonated in my heart half a century later over these 3 words.

I believe I am not the only one out there feeling this.

You know how sometimes you are able to smell the air to know that there is going to a drastic change in the weather?

Well, I am starting to smell it.

Are you too?

Afterthought: The elections are just around the corner and more and more people are getting jaded with the current gahmen and may be seeking alternatives to resolve that.

Granted that PAP has done a great job for the country since day 1. From the days of being an abandoned child to that of a leading beacon in the region. Credit must not be taken away from them for all the work they have done.

Still, the next vote that you cast should not be a token of appreciation for all that has been done. I can think of 3 million reasons too many, that we have already thanked them more than enough.

The next vote is not for the past. It is for the future, based on what we see in the present.

Problem is that I don't like what I am seeing right now.

PAP should still return to power at the end of the day but the people will be introducing more opposition to trim away the unwanted fats and dead weights that has dragged the gahmen down over the years.

It is time to clean up the house.

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- Voxeros

04 February 2010

Singapore Goes Gay For Malaysia Day

The year 1963 was an era of a more innocent time where the world "gay" means happy, gleeful and jovial.
Fast forward to the modern day of the year two thousand and ten and it is a whole different meaning which led me to snicker uncontrollably, much to the displeasure of the people within earshot, who too know what I was thinking.

To make matters worse, I had to part them like Moses parted the Red Sea to take a picture of this poster. They were not too amused.

For the uninitiated, here's a quick low-down on Malaysia Day and what's so gay about it.
*snicker* <-- sorry!

We know 1959 and we know 1965. The former was Singapore being granted full internal self-government status by the British Empire. The latter was Singapore's gaining independence as a republic.

So what happened in 1963?

It must be noted that without Malaysia Day, Singapore cannot complete the jigsaw puzzle and account how we jumped from self government in 1959 to independence in 1965. So it is quite baffling why this particular historical event was left out of our lower secondary history books?

16 Sep 1963 was the day that Malaya, North Borneo (Sabah?), Sarawak and Singapore formed the Malaysian Federation or simply put, Malaysia.

We sometimes refer our Malaysian neighbours as 联邦人. 联邦 in English means Federation.

So now you know how that came about.

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- Voxeros

03 February 2010

Singapore 25-Dollar Note

 

I remember telling people in the past that there was such a thing as a legal tender note of 25 Singapore dollars.

Nobody believed me.

Well, I found this at the National Museum. So there.

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- Voxeros

1. Meepok left...
Wednesday, 3 February 2010 3:06 pm
I have a stack of these. My ah ma gave them to me when I was a kid. Will to sell if the price is right :-)


2. JayWalk left...
Wednesday, 3 February 2010 5:17 pm :: 
Meepok: The reason why this particular $25 note is so deeply etched in my memory is I have 1 piece of this when I was a kid. It was my ang pow money and back then $25 was a lot of money to me.

02 February 2010

National Museum Of Singapore


I went down to the National Museum again yesterday as I wasn't able to complete the visit during my last trip. Yeah, there were THAT MANY things to see in there and I, for one, am the type who like to take my own sweet time to soak in everything.

It's kinda fun to get lost inside all on your own. I guess that's part of my Quiet Me Time. For a moment, just step out of the hectic hustle-bustle, and for a while, just fall off the radar, disappearing into the abyss of silent serenity.

During this second visit, I only visited the Singapore History Gallery where I was only done halfway when they had to close at 6pm during my last visit.

I took 2-1/2 hours to complete the remaining portion of the gallery which kinda tell you how much time you need to allocate if you want to complete the National Museum visit.

Mind you, there is more than one gallery in that building. There is also the Singapore Living Galleries in addition to several ad-hoc exhibitions held from time to time.

The National Museum visit has always been an item on my Bucket List and it is embarrassing to admit that I took THAT LONG to check it out when I travel past it almost every other week.

Even more embarrassing is the fact that I ish National Museum virgin. Well, not anymore now!

Being an avid story teller, I always love a good story. So what better than one that is about the very piece of earth that you are standing on?

I have learnt a lot and possibly some of the best hours of my life that I've spent.

Here's one of what I have learnt.

We all know Sir Stamford Raffles founded the city of Singapore back in 1819. However, what people don't know was that it was Major William Farquhar who did most, if not all the work of transforming Singapore. The former was possibly a mere figurehead who perhaps is needed for his signature on papers.

Then we also know that Farquhar was later on fired as he deviated from Raffles' city master plan due to lack of funds. A conflict ensued and the East India Company took the side of Sir Stamford Raffles and subsequently influenced the historians to archive in favour of Raffles.

So here's the thing. We have schools, golf club, hospitals, hotel, beer and even a airline cabin class named after Raffles today. Imagine, if the EIC hadn't kelonged the historians, none of these would have existed.
Farquhar Junior College, anyone?

More little snippets of what caught my eye at the Museum in the next few days. Stay tuned.

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- Voxeros

1. Desiree left...
Wednesday, 3 February 2010 11:21 am
Suggestion:- Ever been to Chinatown Heritage Centre? I like the interactive display. Smaller than the other museums but very interesting to visit. There are some interesting stories of the previous occupants to satisfy your curiosity too.


2. JayWalk left...
Wednesday, 3 February 2010 5:15 pm :: 
Desiree: No, I have not heard of the Chinatown Heritage Centre. Will be interesting to visit. Perhaps next week.
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