Nee Sern is...

really really sleepy

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Live from Dewan Rakyat

For the first time in the history of Malaysian Parliament, we can now get live updates from these blogger MPs:

Jeff Ooi, Jelutong

Tony Pua, PJ Utara

Correlation does not imply causality

OK, so some chap decides to run a survey on people who live near a telecommunications tower. He finds out that there is a high incidence of cancer among these people. He then concludes that radiation from the telecommunications tower causes cancer...

This type of conclusion is premature. Correlation does not imply causality. Just because two incidents are related to each other, it does not mean that one caused the other. More study has to be done in order to ascertain the actual cause. There may be many factors which have positive or negative correlation, but perhaps only one factor which is the true cause of the situation.

For example, if a study is done on the air and water pollution levels, proliferation of MSG-laden food, low health consciousness and fitness levels, etc. there might also be correlation found. So is it then safe to say that these also caused the high incidence of cancer?

It's important to make the right conclusion based on the studies. Remember:
Correlation does not imply causality

Monday, April 28, 2008

Why is Melaka so hot?

According to Sue Lynn, Melaka is so hot because of all the beaches.

Blardy beaches...

Friday, April 25, 2008

Echoes of Buddhism 4

This weekend, I'll be traveling down to Melaka with my i.gemz buddies for the "Echoes of Buddhism 4" concert. Of course, this is not the first time that i.gemz is performing in EOB. We did concerts in Melaka and Penang previously. It will be a good time for us to actually go on stage again and strut our stuff.

Naturally, being a weekend trip, we will be visiting Jonker's Street, shopping for trinkets, and sampling the local cuisine.

It will be a good getaway from the craziness of the workplace and a refreshing "reunion" for the gang :)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Over Her Dead Body - flat storyline but funny one-liners

Over Her Dead Body is currently showing in cinemas in Malaysia. But this movie was released in 2007, so DVDs are readily available.

Anyway, the plot is so simplistic, it makes me cringe. But the show is saved by some funny one-liners and delivery from the lead actress. Other than that, the movie is so predictable that by the end of the show, you wonder what happened to 2 hours of your life. There was a similar movie shown last time starring Reese Witherspoon called Just Like Heaven, which was much much better!

Recommended only for hardcore fans of romantic comedies.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Forbidden Kingdom - small kids show...

Hollywood has done it yet again. The Americans have taken an interesting and complex Chinese legend (the story of the Monkey King), dumbed it down, added some nifty CGI effects, plugged in a rousing dramatic and emotional soundtrack, and finally cast an ang-moh as the lead whining ordinary kid turned kung fu hero. And voila! Forbidden Kingdom is born.

The much touted fighting scene between Jackie Chan and Jet Li lasted only 10 minutes on screen. That's also aided by super duper wire effects and unbelievable punching/kicking sounds. The rest of the movie plays out like Karate Kid meets Chronicles of Narnia. It is so dumbed down and predictable, that the movie is only suitable for those kids of age 13 to 16. Nothing about the movie impressed me at all. Story line? Seen it all before. CGI and special effects? Too bland already. Stardust did much better. Fighting scenes? Come on... Fearless is still the king!

So where does that leave Forbidden Kingdom?

Very not recommended for the big screen, though it will make good popcorn fare for small kids.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Walking in Europe

If there's one thing Malaysians should learn from Europeans: it's how to be a responsible road user.

Over in Europe, walking around is such a breeze. Vehicles emissions do not smell like black smoke, pavements are wide enough for pedestrians and cyclists to coexist, and of course the traffic lights are actually being followed by walking and driving road users. Tram lines run in the middle of busy roads and everyone follows the rules.

But over here? Drivers honk pedestrians out of the way even at a pedestrian crossing. Motorcyclists zig zag and squeeze between cars and worst of all purposely run the red lights at a busy traffic intersection! And buses and lorries belch out foul smelling smoke that not only smells bad, but is also actually bad.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

I'm back!!!


Friday, April 18, 2008

Blogging from the airport

It's called Finavia here, though I'm not sure is it a proper name or just the direct translation from "airport".

Nothing much to shop here. Things are darn expensive. I think I prefer the airport over at Schipol Amsterdam.

Just 1.5 hours to go before I board my flight. Then it's a harrowing 55 minutes to make my connection back to KL. Hopefully won't have to rush.

Guess what? I'm using the wireless internet account from the hotel, even though I've already checked out! It seems the account is valid for 7 days, so it could be that they have not cancelled it yet, or maybe it's just valid for the entire 7 days duration. Lucky for me there is an access point here :)

Feeling quite hungry now. I didn't open any of the Maggi mee which I brought here. I thought I'd need it for sustenance, but I guess the food here is quite filling. The food from the office canteen is surprisingly good! And the price is subsidized for employees, so it helps to cushion the blow a bit. But now, in the airport, everywhere I turn the price tags scream Euro, and I don't think I'll be eating anything until I board the plane.

It's another 16 hours before I reach Malaysia. Can't wait to be back home!

The view

Here's the view from my hotel room at 8.40pm. Ignore the reflection from the floor lamp in my room.

As you can imagine, sunrise is at 4am, and sundown is at 9pm. So effectively the Finns get 17 hours of daylight, which is great if only the shops open till late. Unfortunately, many shops are already closed by 6pm, so there seems to be no chance to do any souvenir shopping. Not even any time to buy Coke for jyon...

Can't wait to get out of this cold place!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Sun down

It's 9.24pm currently as I type this. The sun has just gone down, but the sky is still a deep blue. The weather is freakishly cold at 5 degrees celcius. Luckily, it didn't pour today. However, gentle winds still push the cold front into my face, and I'm forced to use my ear muffs and leather gloves and wind breaker.


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Live from Helsinki...

After a tiring journey crossing 12 hours from KL to Amsterdam, transiting for 5 hours, then another 2 hours from Amsterdam to Helsinki, finally I'm settled in to my hotel here. The weather is ... Finnish.

I'm going to sleep after a heavy dinner of Kebab and fries (EUR 6.90). FYI it's 7pm local time, which means it's midnight back in Malaysia. YAWNNN!!!

Anyway, for those of you who are somewhat interested to visit Scandinavia, here's a tip: don't! It's expensive, cold, and lacks tourism interest. Better to visit central Europe instead :)

Friday, April 11, 2008

"You go and do it lah see how it is like"

Here are some examples of "arguments" from lame people who want to disagree with your posturing.

On Telco Towers:
My opinion - Telco towers are a necessity in order to improve mobile network quality. If not good enough quality, customer complain. If build tower to improve quality, residents complain about "health hazard". Well, well, actually the amount of radiation reaching from the tower antennas to the mobile phone user is actually much less than the amount of radiation reaching from the mobile phone itself.
Typical response - Why not you let the Telcos build the tower in your house? Then see how is it like!
Counter argument - In the first place, that is not even possible because local bylaws do not permit construction of Telco towers in residential buildings. So this argument does not make sense! People should check the facts and their brains before commenting so carelessly.

On Pig Farms:
My opinion (and the opinion of many others) - The reason why the Selangor government approved the development of a modern pig farm is to centralize and modernize the existing illegal and filthy pig farms, to improve environmental situation and reduce health hazards. The introduction of a modern and centralized pig farm will also empower farmers to improve their processes and henceforth modernize the entire pig farming industry in the state.
Typical response - You go and stay next to the pig farm for one month lah! Or go and rear some pigs as pets.
Counter argument - The reason why the modernization and centralization of the pig farming activity is taking place is so that nobody has to live nearby a pig farm! Better still, abolish all animal farms, let the animals return to the wild, and we all refrain from eating meat.


Prof Chuah is UTAR's new CEO!

Wow. This is just so random. Apparently, UTAR (Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman) has appointed Professor Chuah Hean Teik as their new CEO.

For the uninitiated, Prof Chuah was the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering in MMU (Multimedia University), my alma mater. I personally received my graduation scroll from him during my convocation in 2003. Interestingly, the news article mentions nothing about his involvement in MMU.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

I may not have a place to stay... Finland!

(Hotel booking bungle up)

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Weather for Espoo, Finland

This does not look like fun at all...

Monday, April 07, 2008

Big dogs

Check out these huge Saint Bernards I saw in Midvalley during the Pet exhibition last weekend.

I'm going to...


Friday, April 04, 2008

Why is this road always jammed up?

Sorry, you got to tilt your head...

Craving for Penang food?

The next time I'm craving for authentic Penang food, I won't have to find an excuse to drive 350km north to the food paradise. Instead, I can now head over to The Gardens @ Midvalley and have a satisfying meal in Gurney Drive! Yes, it's really authentic Penang food sourced from various hawker stalls in Penang. Apparently, the cooks are also originally from those stalls, so really WYSIWYG!

We had lunch last Sunday there, and we ordered Curry Mee, Cha Hor Fun, O-Chien, Sotong Kandar and Ais Kacang. The curry is simply fabulous and the soup is rich and creamy and spicy together with the chili oil. The Cha Hor Fun is simply superb, each mouthful inviting yet another. The O-Chien is kind of expensive (RM18!) but the amount of oysters more or less compensates for the crazy price. The Sotong is also soft and juicy, the spices really complement the taste of the sotong. Finally, the Ais Kacang is such a big bowl and full of the "liao" until the entire bowl is literally covered in colour! The entire meal cost RM50+, and with a 15% opening discount, it came up to just under RM50. Of course, the entire meal can also be consumed in Penang for less than RM20. Ah well, it's the price you have to pay if you don't want to drive 350km north.

The next time I go there, I'll try the Hokkien Mee, Cha Kuey Teow, Asam Laksa, Nasi Kandar, and other fabulous food there.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Section 16 U-Turn Ramp

2 days ago, a trailer blocked the U-turn ramp in front of Phileo Damansara, causing a massive traffic jam. For 2 days back to back, The Star Metro reported that indiscriminate parking still prevails here.

No joke. Here's the photo evidence taken 10 minutes ago. The red circles show those stupid cars parking along the road shoulder. They should be fined and jailed!

The solution to KLIA touts

The Star reports that OTK, newly minted Transport Minister, wants to identify why touts proliferate in KLIA.

I have the simple solution: instead of allowing the Airport Limo to monopolize taxi service from KLIA, allow the incoming taxis to also ferry passengers out of KLIA. This will alleviate the taxi shortage problem and stop the practice of touting!

Newly minted Tourism Minister cancels MoU's with Pakatan Rakyat states

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

The jam outside Phileo Damansara yesterday

So I was stuck inside the Phileo Damansara car park for 35 minutes, inching my way out, all because of this!

But really, the article in The Star highlights only the cars which were illegally parked in the first place. In actuality, the main reason for the unnecessary jam was a stuck trailer! This stuck trailer was blocking the entire u-turn, therefore all cars had no choice but to go straight. And this caused the backlog into Phileo Damansara, and I believe spilled over to the Sprint highway and Jalan Dato Abu Bakar as well.

So, what the heck was the trailer driver thinking? In the first place, his is a long vehicle, so even if there were no cars parked illegally on the ramp, the trailer would not have been able to maneuver its way around the narrow u-turn.

But, anyway, having said all that, it's still vital that DBKL (or MBPJ, whichever is the authority in charge) be diligent, come and summon all these illegally parked vehicles, especially those parked below the u-turn ramp. Already, traffic is quite bad, but due to these vehicles, the 2 lanes are further reduced to only 1 lane.

People's Pact

So it's official!

The PKR-DAP-PAS shaky alliance has been formalized into a coalition, known as "Pakatan Rakyat", or "People's Pact". Sure means a lot more than "National Front" :)

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

I finally found...

... good Tom Yam nearby!

It's in Green House Thai Restaurant along Jalan SS18/6 (same row as Farmland Porridge Steamboat). It has a nondescript green coloured signboard. It may not look like much, but serves one of the best clear Tom Yam I've tasted in Subang Jaya. The seafood Tom Yam comprises of squid, shrimp, clams and scallop. Really tasty and authentic. Hopefully the restaurant can survive long for me to satisfy my cravings for good Thai food ;)