Saturday, June 30, 2007

I am so dead

Yes, I've told you that I have ate too much recently and I'm supposed to eat less and work out. Guess what, I just did the opposite as a matter of fact. I ate more, and did literally NO exercise. Well, my excuse is that my work has given me quite a lot of pressure lately, and it was the perfect reason to eat more. As the week is coming to an end, it is a good time to start my diet plan and exercise again.

Finger crossed, I can execute the plan.

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Thursday, June 28, 2007

Human Tetris in Japanese Game Show

My friend pointed me to this YouTube video which is just funny. I must admit that it is very creative for them to come out with this idea. It also need good contestants to make the show a funny one. These guys are just hilarious.

Also, while you are having fun watching them taking the challenges, you may want to try figuring out how to take those challenges if you were playing the game.

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Sunday, June 24, 2007

I think I ate too much

Well, I think I just ate too much recently. I haven't have the courage to step on the weight machine, but I know that I am having a great time eating all the nice stuffs. Now I'm feeling very guilty, not to mention that I have a uncomfortable stomach. Since my part-time work is coming to an end, I think I should start making an exercise plan just to keep myself a little bit healthy.

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Friday, June 22, 2007

Helping others is just...

We all have experiences where we helped somebody, we got blamed or taken for granted instead of being appreciated. We heard news about people who offer help became victims of robbery, or being cheated, or any other thing except a thank you.I think that's the main reason why me and people around me tend to avoid those who need help.

So when I saw this lady who just met with a minor accident try to start her bike in the middle of the road, I intended to drive on. It was a minor accident, she was the only one involved. She seemed OK, so was her bike. I believe that within minutes she will be fine. However, there was this voice in my mind that reminded me that her situation was still risky. She was try to start her bike in the middle of the road, and it was just right after a left turn that other motorist might not be able to see her. So I pull over and asked her to stay away and I pushed her bike to the side of the road. Then I helped her to start her bike again and make sure she is OK.

She didn't say much except "Thank you". However, to me, that two words really made my day as I move on to start my day of work. Helping others is just... priceless.

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Looking for a part-time job, soon

My part-time job is going to end this month. As much as I like the current job, I think I have to start looking for another part-time job. The reason being that even if there is another contract offered to me, I will only be informed at the very last minute. So, I think it is better for me to build another "safety net" just in case there is no more job for me.

Come to think about it, time really flies when you are busy. I was feeling very lazy to start my week and without me knowing it is the middle of the week already. I think that is one of the good thing about having a part-time is that I can divert my focus on the part-time job whenever life gets a bit bumpy. I keep reminding myself that there are things to do and I really don't have time to feel down, frustrated, upset and whatever. The extra income is one thing, but it forces me to be more focus, productive and efficient, and I am glad that I can manage between my full-time job and part-time job, while trying to have a life.

Well, time to do a little bit of scouting.

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Monday, June 18, 2007

Scribefire - convenient blogging

Scribefire is the Firefox plugin which I find handy for me to blog. It puts a handly icon at the bottom right of the browser, and whenever I feel like writing a blog, or I come across with something interesting, I'll just bring it up and I can start writing. Once I am done, with a click of a button my post will be published. No need to surf to Blogger, no need to log in.

After downloading the plugin, it needs some setting up. However, the procedures are not very hard if you are using common blog services like Blogger or Wordpress. Once everything is set up, you can start to organize your posts. You can save them as notes, which is a very useful feature to me. Every now and then, there are topics which I would like to write about but just don't have the time to do so. I just create an empty note with the title of the topic I want to write and save it until I find the time to write about it.

There are other features like integration with Del.Icio.Us and Technorati, but since I haven't have the time to explore more about it, I think I'll just stick to the editor for the moment

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Live like you have no tomorrow

"Live like you have no tomorrow" is one of my friends' instant messenger tag line. It has been his tag line for quite some time, but I have to admit that it was indifferent to me. Honestly, my life has been quite occupied recently that I hardly care about its quality. To me, this is a quote for those who has free time and therefore afford to seek for quality lives.

Then, things changed a bit when we received the news that one of our friends' father has passed away. It was quite a shocking news as no one has expected it. He was ill for some time, but last time we heard is that he was recovering so we thought everything is fine for him. Then, without any warning, he left this world just like that.

Suddenly, the simple quote means so much. It reminds us that life is so uncertain that we shouldn't take anything for granted. Today we might be having fun, or busy working for a better life but who knows, we may be gone tomorrow. What we have is only today, and we should make the best and most out of it.

Hopefully, this is a lesson which everyone of us can learn.

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Sunday, June 17, 2007

Sometimes, we don't really have to buy

Our church inherited two guitars, one electric and another one a bass guitar. As a startup, our church has limited fund and not many members, so it is fine for us if it is not the best and the nicest looking guitars. However, after a few months, we started to have problems with the electric guitar. First it was some noises, then the connection of the jack became loose causing it to be mute every now and then. The same goes with the bass, firsrt it is OK, then one day it just refused to work.

Enough is enough. One day we were having a bad day and the guitar just giving us a lot of problems (we had left the bass aside for good since it refuses to work). So we were seriously discussing to replace those guitars with new ones. We have been saving some funds to buy a set of drums, but since the guitar is causing more trouble, we were considering of replacing them first.

However, it is such a waste to me that we buy new one just because the two having some problems. I decided to give it a shot by finding someone to repair them.

First I brought them to a shop selling musical instrument. I told them my problems (guitar not working, our church has limited fund, bla bla...). After hearing my stories and did some checking on the guitars, the shop owner recommended me to bring it to a freelancer. According to him, it is much cheaper than to get it fixed in his shop.

Seeing there is hope for the two, I called up the freelancer and schedule a time to pass the guitars to him. I repeated my story to him. I told him to do whatever necessary to make them good. I told him my budget, and asked him to give me a call if the cost to fix them is higher than that.

A couple weeks later, we met again and both the guitars were good as new. The cost is much lesser than buying a new one, leaving us more fund to replace the drum set. I am glad that we did the right thing by fixing rather than throwing the guitars away. We are not only saving cost but also helping the world by not creating two more pieces of junk.

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Saturday, June 16, 2007

No need to buy in bulk... at least in the hypermarket

I believe in the saying of,"cheaper by the dozen". Most of the time, buying in bulk will be cheaper. That's true because most of the time, the seller is willing to sell at a lower price, as long as there is more money to make in that transaction.

I think the same rule applies to hypermarket as well. Or so I thought.

I drink quite a lot of soft drinks lately. Blame it on the weather, busy lifestyle, and whatever. When I went to the hypermarket shopping for some groceries, I noticed they have different pricing for bulk packs soft drinks too. I figure that since there are different pricing for bulk pack and individual cans, the former one should be cheaper per item. I was about to take the 24 cans of soft drink when my friend suggested we should calculate the actual price per can for the bulk pack. It turn out that for 24 cans of soft drink, I will save 24 cents.

24 cents for 24 cans of soft drinks, that saves me 1 cent per can. And for this 24 cents, I lose the option of buying different flavour and have to carry more weight. Having this new finding, I check on the pricing for another brand of soft drink which has 6 packs packaging. The result? The price is the same as you buying 6 individual can. The only reason to buy the 6 packs is that it is easier to carry with the cardboard than with 6 individual cans.

Then I go on to check with cup noodles. There are those selling 6 in a pack, and the price is the same with you buying 6 different flavours of individual cup. Of course, it is easier to carry 6 cups in a nicely packed plastic bag, but you don't get to eat different flavour.So, I figure that the pros and the cons are almost equal as far as the hyper market is concerned, therefore there is no price difference for the two.

Anyway, the lesson for the day: before you decide to buy anything in bulk, spend some time to do some calculation to make sure that it is really worth it.

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Friday, June 15, 2007

Steamboat, Porridge and Pumpkin

It's been quite some time since I last has a good meal. Life has been busy as usual. So, when my friend suggested that we go to eat steamboat, I quickly call up a few other friends too. Steamboat is kind of funny, it's just like the old saying,"the more the merrier". So, rule of thumb: get as many people as your car can take. Of course, if you are walking your way to the restaurant, call the whole village and everyone you met along the way.

So, we were at this restaurant which is famous for its porridge(aka congee)-base steamboat. Porridge-based steamboat means using porridge to replace the broth for the steamboat. Then you just put whatever food you like into it to cook. Usually it is nice enough if you do it that way. However, what is special about this restaurant is that they provide pumpkin to go along with the steamboat.

Basically, you just put the pumpkin into the porridge, but instead of eating it straight away, you let it melt into the porridge. Of course it takes time, but you can eat other stuffs first. After a while the porridge will turning into yellowish, then you'll find that the porridge tastes much nicer with the fragrance of the pumpkin.

One good thing about the porridge-based steamboat is that you can order less food. In fact, you should order less food if you are taking porridge-based streamboat because at the end of the meal, you can take the porridge, and the taste is very good. If you order it right, then there is no wastage like what we did, we finished off everything, including the porridge at the end of the meal.

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Thursday, June 14, 2007

Don't buy from a handphone stall, if you want an original phone

A mine of mine bought a handphone from a handphone stall in a plaza.He requested for an original phone which he is willing to pay the price. However, when he wentback home, he found that it was an AP set (i.e. not original). Of course he was very upset because he paid the price of an original set. So, he went back to argue with the stall owner.

You should have know the result: the owner denied that he told my friend that it was an original set. And obviously my friend can't get anything more than an extended warranty, from the stall itself instead of the authorised dealer. That means, if anytime the stall went out of business, my friend might have some problem to get his handphone fixed if it has any problems.

He asked for my advice over the phone, and the only thing I can say is that: learn the lesson.

In my opinion, if you want an original set, by all means buy from a reputable shop (and not a stall). If you want something cheap, then settle on an AP set (with a lower price), and hope that the stall is still around when you need it. Other than that, if you have a friend who buys lot of phones, get him/her to recommend  a reputable stall, although I don't see any reason why you want to do that. For me, the money saved does not justify the risk that you are taking. And always sign the warranty card on the spot, making sure that it was from the authorised distributor.

Well, just my two cents.

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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Be careful, no matter what

The weather was good, there is no rain. So was the traffic: there weren't a lot of cars. Everything is just fine for a normal day. In the middle of the highway however, a car has crashed and flipped over, all wheels facing upward. It was not a sport car, just a normal car, much like the ones which you and I own. A lot of people slowed down their cars to take a closer look. And as usual, this causes a small traffic jam.

I am not sure about the driver, I hope that he/she is fine. I didn't see any fire brigade coming here, and there wasn't any blood stain, so I hope that no one was hurt. Losing a car is a small thing, compare to losing one's life. Come to think about that, I wouldn't mind the time that I was stuck in the traffic, as long as the person(s) involved in the accident is not badly hurt.

Yes, even under very fine situation, accidents can happen. So the tip for today is: be careful on the road, no matter how fine the weather, the road condition, the traffic. And most of all, don't drink and drive!

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Monday, June 11, 2007

Let's talk about saving

Saving is like flossing: everyone knows we should do it, but almost nobody does it. And just like almost no one will talk about flossing in a casual conversation, we seldom talk about saving among friends too.

Just like the rest of the people around me, I know the importance of saving. Being an emergy fund, saving for my retirement, or just for the fun of it. But I was quite shocked when I check my bank balance and found that I almost save nothing for the past couple of years. And an even more shocking fact is that I don't know where did all those money gone!

I remember I used to save together with a friend. Every month we will find a Saturday and go to the bank together. We make sure each other deposit the agreed amount of money to our (separate) bank accounts, before going for a cup of coffee, and visualize what we can do with the money. However, as this friend of mine left town on business trip, the habit just stop (well, at least for me).

Of course, finding that there isn't much money left in my bank account is an inconvenient truth, but I'm glad that I found it out early. Before I face an emergency where I need some money, I will start saving again.

For a start, maybe a 10 percent of what I get every month, yeah.

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Thursday, June 07, 2007

Working with a friend is fun

I was told to check on the speakers for the coming charity fair when I drop by my church to check things out. Apparently nothing much has been done on it: the cables are not ready, and the speakers, they are still sitting nicely in the boxes. Since I won't be handling the PA system on the actual day, I called up my friend to remind him of things to be done.

"Well, I can come over if you want." He told me over the phone. That is very helpful of him, and I sure want some company. Knowing that he doesn't have his own transport, I asked him how he is suppose to come.

"I'll get my mom to send me over."

However I don't really want to trouble his mother, so I told him that I'll go and pick him up.


15 minutes later, we were fixing the cables. None of us are familiar with the new jacks for the speakers, so we spent some time to figure it out. Then we unpacked the speakers and setup the whole PA system to make sure everything is working fine. Things are going quite well, so we take our time to test the sound quality, playing a nice song over and over again.

After making sure everything is working, we packed the speakers back to the boxes, ready to be moved to the venue on Saturday. Since it was kind of late, we didn't go for a drink. However, it has been quite some time since I enjoy working with someone. Most of the time, people don't want to contribute and just blame one another for everything that fails. I am glad that I have a friend whom I can work with, knowing that we did whatever we can to accomplish our goal.

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