Monday, October 29, 2007
One man's trash is another man's treasure.
One man's pain is another man's pleasure.
Credits to Fort Minor; I love the Rising Tied! Their sounds are much better than those coming from Linkin Park recently, which is such a disappointment really.
Mrs Brightside at 12:27 pm (0) comments
Friday, October 26, 2007
koped from jasmine's blog! :)
Now, if only to find that lucrative big sunny field in our lives. dont mean to be pessimistic but :P
Mrs Brightside at 12:13 am (0) comments
Thursday, October 25, 2007
WHU website! Haha.. Looks pretty and harry potter-ish but dont let appearances deceive you; actually it entails a 15min walk uphill so it's not that pretty after all. I used to live in the window that is on the bottom floor, that is between the 2 windows covered by the trees. Can you see? Hahahahaa
Mrs Brightside at 11:27 am (0) comments
Monday, October 22, 2007
Using the phone as an ATM?
This isn't a metaphorical phrase about the rise of innovation. Far from it, it's about how an amazing system has arised from the people on the streets of Uganda. Credits to TED and Jan Chipchase of Nokia for this excerpt:
Take the average man on the street. He's working in another city far away from his hometown. He wants to send some cash back home to his family, but he doesn't have a bank account; neither can he afford the high commission rates charged by remittance agencies.
In Uganda, they have these little things called phone kiosks. These are essentially like small phone stores, where people who need to make calls can go in and make a call, or rent a handphone.
Now back to the average man. He goes out and buys a simcard top-up, let's say worth $20. He calls the phone kiosk and tells them the code on the top-up card. The phone kiosk now has $20 worth of phone credit. It takes a commission, say 10%, and gives the remaining $18 in cash to average man's family.
And there you have it! A simple, elegant system. And all this, off the streets. I really marvelled at the simplicity, beauty and ease of use of it. As Mr Chipchase himself said, I dont think any of us would have been able to think of such a good system.
Not enough credit is being given to the poor for their own innovative techniques. A lot of times, many processes are already in place to help ensure their sustainability and livelihood. As aptly put by someone before (can't remember where I read this), Africa doesn't need saving. It doesn't need another celebrity adopting more of its children. It needs trade, and a chance to take its trade into the world market at an equal level. I think such micro-credit and -financing schemes are very viable and will definitely grow, maybe even forming the bedrock of developing economies.
Mrs Brightside at 7:58 pm (0) comments
Saving the world, one step at a time.
As introduced by kah how. Donate rice to the UN food program today :)
(and at the same time test your vocab skills. I'm at level 40 now, haha)
Mrs Brightside at 3:54 pm (0) comments
This freaks me out:
I mean, not in a bad way of course. More like in amazement.
1) The range of his voice. wow. blown away.
2) Notice all the musicians in the video are all masked with a black cloth. I wonder how they see and play their instruments. The guy with the cymbals is especially disturbing, especially when he clangs them together and you see he has no face, just a black cloth.
All this is like a little of a culture shock to me. Russian culture shock to be exact. Even the melody is haunting and strange. Very, very morbid indeed.
Mrs Brightside at 1:36 am (0) comments
Sunday, October 21, 2007
"As of August 2007, the Harry Potter series had sold over 350 million books worldwide, ranking it third highest in book sales of all time, only behind the Bible and The Thoughts of Chairman Mao."
(Businessweek.com 2005, cnn.com)
Actually, not very fair la. HP consists of 7 books in total so using the simplest statistical tool available, average, that's about 50 million per book. So by right it ranks nowhere near the Bible and Mao's little red book, if you refer to book per se and not series.
But my point is not about the 350 million. Aren't you surprised? Chairman Mao's book!
Mrs Brightside at 2:50 pm (0) comments
Saturday, October 20, 2007
I have this tiny mosquito bite near my armpit. But scratching it looks so obscene.
Mrs Brightside at 3:02 am (0) comments
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
To Mr Ron Chong Ker Chuen, whose letter appeared in 16 Oct 2007, Today:
What is morality? What are values? Is being a homosexual immoral? Does it mean a good man who gives money to the poor but has a different sexual preference is considered immoral and without values?
I urge you to reconsider your argument. To use “education” of morals and values as an argument of keeping S377A just doesn’t seem logical enough. If you are a good parent, no law (or the lack of laws) will interfere in your parenting in any way.
Mrs Brightside at 8:25 am (0) comments
11th German Film Festival!
Which one should I watch?
1) Wo ist Fred?
Fred (Til Schweiger) wants to get married to Mara (Anja Kling), who is a single parent. The hitch is that Mara’s son Linus (Ramonu König) hates Fred and is bent on getting rid of this unwanted male competition. There is only one way to win Linus’ favor: to get him an original basketball personally signed by ALBA-Berlin superstar Mercurio Müller (Drazan Tomic). And the only place to get it is the handicapped tribune, where Mercurio Müller throws the ball after each record basket. Fred sees no other option: he needs to pretend to be handicapped in order to gain access to the handicapped tribune. When Fred actually catches the ball he is the star of the evening. The following media hype forces him to lead an exhausting and comical double life in the course of which he finally finds his true love.
2) Die Aufschneider
5 and 9 Nov
The high-tech hospital St. Georg and the oldfashioned Eichwald clinic take up a comedic fight for survival after health authorities decide to close down one of the hospitals for economical reasons. Now, both hospitals have ten days timeto prove to the board of authorities that their facility is better than the other. But whereas the good natured yet gawky employees of Eichwald clinic begin to develop new concepts, the mean head of St. Georg starts a sleazy campaign to sabotage the rival clinic. Thus, within a short period of time chaos breaks out at both hospitals – but rarely for the good of the patients.
Both are comedies... Anyone interested? ;)
Mrs Brightside at 12:04 am (0) comments
Sunday, October 14, 2007
If you were born in the 80's in Singapore,you would remember:
You grew up watching He-man, MASK, Transformers, Silver Hawk and Mickey Mouse, Ninja turtles, Carebears, Robocop, My Little Pony and Smurfs.
You grew up brushing your teeth with a mug in Primary school during recess time. You would squat by a drain with all your classmates beside you, and brush your teeth with a coloured mug.
You hated or loved the school nurse (she was either pretty or mean).
You know what SBC stands for.
You paid 40 cents for cartons of Chocolate or Strawberry milk every week in class.
Everyone's wallet used to be the velcro type
It was cool to have pagers in primary school
SBS buses used to be non-airconditioned. The bus seats are made of wood and the cushionwere red. The big red bell gave a loud BEEP! when pressed.
There were still bus tickets and bus conductors would come up to check them.
Envelopes were given to us to donate to Sharity Elephant every Children's Day.
You've probably read Young Generation magazine.You know who's Vinny the little vampire and Acai the constable.
You know what PETS are and the hidden animals in all the text pages. You hated penmanship.
Writing lines and caning hands were common, esp if you failed chinese spelling (caning was actually allowed. no shit).
You were there when they first introduced the MRT here. You went for the first ride with your parents and you would kneel on the seat to see the scenery.
Movie tickets used to cost only $3.50.
Gals were fascinated by Strawberry Short Cake and Barbie Dolls.
You learn to laugh like The Count in Sesame Street.
You bought tidbits called beebee (20 cents per pack, 10 cents in MGS), and mamee (30 cents), that had a different sticker in it every time.
You carried a lunch box to school but either threw away the food or brought it back home again.
You watched TV2 (also known as Channel 10) cartoons because Channel 5 never had enough cartoons for you.
Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, The Three Investigators, Famous Five and Secret Seven were probably the thickest
story books you thought you would ever read.
KFC used to be a high class restaurant that served food in plates and had metal forks and knives. (I dont remember this, anyone?)
The most vulgar thing you said was asshole and idiot and THE MOST EXTREME WAS 'chicken pie'...you just couldn't bring yourself to say the hokkien translation.
Catching and pepsi-cola was the IN thing, and twist was the
Your English workbooks were made of some damn poor quality paper that was smooth and yellow.
You came to school 15 mins before the bell every morning just so you could copy someone's homework.
CDIS was your best friend.
The only computer lessons in school involved funny pixellized characters in 16 colours walking about trying to teach you math.
Waterbottles were slung around your neck and a must everywhere you went.
Boys loved to play soccer with small stones or tennis balls in the basketball court.
Girls played five stones and boys played with marbles.
Science was fun with the Balsam and the Angsana being the most important plants of our lives, guppies and swordtail being the most important fishes.
Who can forget Ahmad, Bala, Sumei and John, immortalized in our minds from school textbooks.
We conducted experiments of our own to get badges for being a Young Zoologist/Botanist etc.
Every Children's day and National day you either got pins or pens with 'Happy Children's Day 1993' or useless plastic files with 'Happy National Day 1994'.
You wore BM2000, BATA, or Pallas shoes.
Your form teacher taught you Maths, Science and English.
You went to school in slippers and a raincoat when it rained, and you find a dry spot in the school
to sit down, dry your feet, and wear your dry and warm socks and shoes.
There would be spelling tests and mental sums to do almost everyday (you hated them).
Your friends considered you lucky and rich if your parents gave you $2 or more for pocket mone everyday.
You saw Wee Kim Wee's face in the school hall.
Boys liked catching fighting spiders, earthworms or tadpoles.
Collecting and battling erasers was a pastime for boys.
Class monitors and prefects loved to say, "You talk somemore, I write your name ah!"
You got booked for muddy shoes in class.
There were at least 40 people in one class.
You brought every single book to school, even though there was a timetable.
There was a pro-yo/bumblebee, digimon craze at some point in time.
SO so nostalgic!! Taken from the facebook group here. Ahh really brings back memories! I was giggling and nodding my head at everything when I read it hehehe :) awww.
Mrs Brightside at 11:47 pm (0) comments
Good luck France for the rugby semis, and congratulations Malaysia for their first astronaut :) I can't wait to see him play 5 stones in space, hahaha.
(ps. no prizes to guess why I support France. Haha :P)
Mrs Brightside at 12:05 am (1) comments
Saturday, October 13, 2007
Mrs Brightside at 10:11 pm (0) comments
Drink Green Tea!!
Aye from my Project Argali team claims that drinking green tea at home all the time keeps her skinny. She doesn't avoid any types of food (and eats a lot), doesn't exercise yet she is skinnier than me! So I shall follow her regime too. Plenty of green tea for me from now onwards.
But how much green tea is too much? According to this article, 10 cups a day is fine. Yay! I've had 2 today, got 8 more to go before I reach the limit.
Cheers to green tea!
Mrs Brightside at 4:33 pm (0) comments
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Sign the online letter: http://www.repeal377a.com/ today!
I miss playing the piano. The one at home is out of tune and awry and terrible, with keys that dont pop back up when pressed down. Oh, the joy of playing beautiful songs on a grand piano again!
Mrs Brightside at 10:26 pm (0) comments
Tuesday, October 09, 2007
Again, taking time out from doing the million and one things I have to do (and still have not done) to write on something which I care about.
Taking a leaf from mrbrown, whom I read almost once every two days, there was an interesting article that was published in a Malaysian newspaper defining what a Singaporean is. Full article can be perused here.
So what is a Singaporean? I'm no longer surprised at the way the government engages in statistics wordplay; I think it's a given norm and so SG-gahmen for them to do that. It's like you expect them to do something like that already.
But rather, instead of getting angry at the "manipulation", I just wish to remind everyone of one thing. Singapore has its roots as an immigrant society. Although all of the current generation are born and bred here, just 2 generations ago our grandparents traversed the great south china seas, the straits of malacca and the Indian Ocean to come here and sink their roots.
Two generations ago - now that's not very far back. The Americans had their European roots at least 5 or 6 generations ago. And you still hear Americans proudly proclaim when they meet European people - "Hey! Where are you from? Oh, Italy? Yeah that's where my great-great-great-grandma was from! Cool!" But you seldom hear a Singaporean say "Oh, you're from China? That's where my grandma is from! Cool!"
Instead, we identify ourselves as being Singaporean, and Chinese. And then we proceed to explain (if we were talking to foreigners) that Singapore is made up of 4 big races and English is the common language and we grew up bilingual (that fact always impresses them, hahaha). Sometimes we forget that 2 generations was not that long ago.
My point is, yes, Singapore needs the foreign talent to keep the engine of the economy chugging along. However, the concept of national identity which the government has so painstakingly built up along the way and tried to inculcate in our young through song and dance, fireworks and, a rather harsh word - propaganda - will inevitably be eroded away. Soon, being a Singaporean might mean merely a geographical reference - "I work in Singapore, so I am a Singaporean." It's like saying you're Asian when actually Asia is such a vast geographical area that the term "Asian" is so difficult to define that it's hard to speak of any so-called "Asian pride".
I'm sure that all our foreign talents love Singapore and would contribute to the economy (and they also pay their taxes because they are Singapore tax residents and Singapore taxes on a territorial basis! muahaha). However, maybe we should re-write our social studies textbook and say that now, Singapore is still an immigrant society. The 4 big races of old are replaced by an amalgamation of people from all over (although the Chinese and Indian bits still stay strong). As easily as people can come in, Singaporeans themselves can also easily leave. What then, will become of national identity?
I guess that is not the concern of the government - national identity. After all, it is only a vehicle to promote social cohesion and racial harmony. Since we have both, as foreigners probably don't give two hoots about other races to bother conflicting with them, we naturally have social cohesion and racial harmony.
Ultimately, at the end of the day, who will call Singapore home? The one who grew up here? Or the one who works and lives here now, but has his family and friends in another country? Many foreigners I speak to always say "oh, i'm going home for the holidays". Hmm, now where does that leave Singapore? A very precarious situation, at the same time sad.
Maybe next time I travel, instead of saying "I'm Singaporean", I will say "I live in Singapore."
Mrs Brightside at 9:45 am (0) comments
Saturday, October 06, 2007
I like Saturday's ST. Sometimes impartial, but always insightful. And also maybe it's because 50% of the INSIGHT articles are from new york times, or some other foreign newswire or something. hehe.
Mrs Brightside at 7:41 pm (0) comments
My vices, past and present.
While playing BigFish Games' Westward last night until 5am, I realised that I have a lot of vices, and these have changed as I grew up. Let me now recount them stage by stage.
As a kid, my main MAIN vice was Kids Central, then known as TV12. Cartoons, channel 8 drama serial reruns, TV media infomercials, 7pm show, 9pm show - I lapped it all up. Mum had to set aside TV time after which I'm not supposed to watch anymore.
2. Playing with my cousin and staying over
I loved playing at my cousin's house. Run around, playing pretend, staying over and having great food cooked by aunty/grandma. The only bad thing was that my elder cousins very fierce so they always scold us :(
3. Computer games
Growing up with 1 brother and 2 male cousins about the same age, I was inducted into computers at a very young age. I remember boasting to Mingze at Primary 4 or 5 that thongkheng's house got 5 computers (it was true. 2 downstairs, 1 in the store and 2 upstairs).
With so many computers, obviously playing games on LAN was very convenient. We always did heroes, warcraft, starcraft on LAN - very very fun! I also remember helping my mum out with some data entry on Lotus Notes 1-2-3, the really old antique version.
I remember typing out commands in c:\ prompt and then gradually progressing to windows 95 which was quite cool at that time. I remember internet dial-up was super slow and always had the beep beep bop beep bop sound. And it didn't always work.
Alright I'm too tired to talk about secondary school day vices. Maybe another post :)
Mrs Brightside at 3:54 pm (0) comments
Friday, October 05, 2007
Atas with Samantha
Haha yup we were atas. we went to morton's steakhouse bar and had chocolate martini (for her) and appletini (for me) but we realised that the REAL tai tai's drink is lychee martini! there were a coupla pretty young tai tais in dresses in the table next to us who ALL ordered lycheetini. I personally dont favour lycheetini cos sometimes if it isn't mixed right it can taste a bit contrived and weird. A little mechanical. So the safe bet appletini was good :)
IAMSOTIRED. but i have stuff to do for CAT and sikkim/argali tmr. shit shit shit. quick nap now then wake up to do.
Mrs Brightside at 8:20 pm (0) comments
Thursday, October 04, 2007
I just realised that my blog has some level of readership. Hello Paulie, hello Lester! Paulie are you going for Datuk trek too? Yayy! :)
I'm quite tired today but I really want to go rock climbing. Maybe i'll join in later and see if i can slot myself in, hehe.
Mrs Brightside at 12:13 pm (0) comments
To read list
Don Quijote by Miguel De Cervantes
East and West by Christ Patten
Hong Kong by Jan Morris
Le Peau de chagrin by Honoré de Balzac
1984 by George Orwell
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