Tuesday, October 30, 2007

I got my haircut today. I'm going to renew my passport and I needed a passport photo. I was going to take it myself but I figure I better let the shop do it for me.

My shoulders in the photo is a little crooked but what the heck... it's for my passport and I'll hardly ever look at it. If something does ever happen to me, they'll be looking for someone that looks like me with lopsided shoulders.

I wasn't planning to renew my passport till next year. I read in the newspaper they're planning to have a one hour passport renewal system nationwide by then. That would be great. However... one of my managers hinted I might have to go overseas for a few days in November so I better get that passport ready.

In my old/current passport, I've only used one page and that's to get into Kota Kinabalu. How embarassing. I haven't left the country since... according to this passport, the date of issue is Jan 2002. Wow, I've been in Malaysia for that long without going anywhere.

Would be wierd going to some strange land again. I'm so used to the routine of waking up; going to work; going to Chui Yan's house; going to the usual shopping malls. Everytime I drive to somewhere new in the Klang Valley I'm excited. Ever since I got my car fixed I can go places now... however flying of to a new country can be a little scarry. I like coming home at the end of the day to something assuring, like my own bed.

When I was a student studying overseas, sometimes I'll get paranoid and think, "who is going to help me if something happens to me in this strange land?" I would wake up feeling so far away from home. I still get that feeling even if I drive of to somewhere on the other side of the Klang Valley. I'm a homely person.
I just thought I'll write a little before I hit the sack. My niece started crying in the middle of the night. She trew up and everyone woke up trying to calm her down.

I was holding up the Barney I gave her and it felt a little damp. I looked down and there was puke stains on it. Damn. Good thing it wipes of easily.

While looking at her for some strange reason I started thinking about love at first sight. It's wierd. I used to think it could happen but I guess now I have a different theory on it. I think it's more like attraction on first sight. Look at the animal kingdom, males have to attract their females through brightly coloured feathers, frogs have to croak and fight each other. For the human species, it's mostly the females who have to do the attraction. Males are attracted to larger breast and wider hips as its a sign of fertility. I guess through natural selection, males who have mated with females with larger breast were more successful in breeding than males who preferred less attractive women.

Yes, natural selection defined for us what is beauty. That's what I believe in. So what does that have to do with attraction at first sight? I believe we're attracted to people by what ever our genes or previous experiences tell us is attractive. We don't fall in love with the person right away. I believe love is something that grows over time. It has to be nurtured. You don't fall in love with someone instantly. Sure it helps to be attracted to the person... but that physically attractive model could also be a real pain in the ass in real life... while that plain looking friend of yours could be the love of your life.

I've already found the love of my life so that gives me a little authority to speak from experience. Love grows... and it has to be nurtured. It can as easily falter and wither away as it has bloomed.

Monday, October 29, 2007

I just got back from shooting a Hari Raya open house in Taman TAR. I knew it was the house of a pretty well to do guy but when I drove up to his house, my first thoughts was I might have drove to the wrong place because right in front of me was a huge place that looked like an office.

The guy had a really nice collections of luxury cars. The guest of honour was His Majesty Seri Paduka Baginda Al-Wathiqu Billah Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin Ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Mahmud Al-Muktafi Billah Shah. Okay, I cut and pasted it from the royalty's website. I just wanted to make sure I got His Highness designation correct.

I even managed to get a picture with his cool ride.

His car is a Maybach. It's a luxury Mercedes. It's 6000CC. It's got the horse power of a truck! I think this car can win a tug-of-war with times two of my car. Anyway, it's a nice car. The government spend RM4.7 million for it. Nothing less for our Yang Di-Pertuan Agong. We shouldn't call him the king, the actual term is Agong. It's different as it's a rotating Agong. 5 year term.

Our current Agong is really nice guy from what I've seen personally and heard. Pretty down to earth guy. His highness is the first Agong I know to actually give press interviews.

Anyway, I'm beat from standing all day and carrying my heavy battery pack. I think my back is going to kill me tomorrow. Ouch.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I had a wonderful dinner with Chui Yan yesterday at the Trader's Hotel last night. We didn't know what to do that night so I thought we'll drive out to KL and find somewhere posh to dine. It was a great view of KLCC park from their hotel on the 6th floor.

However, when I got home something bad happened. Someone called me to ask if I could shoot a video for them. I said I'll think about it. I picked up my video camera that was sitting on my couch. I flipped it over and I realized the lens cap was missing. I searched all over my house and it wasn't there! Then it slowly dawned on me that I might have left it in the restaurant that I was shooting at last week.


Ever since I got that camera, I was really paranoid of loosing that lens cap. I've always had it in my pocket while shooting. I just don't understand how it could go missing. The thing that pissed me of the most is that right after shooting on the previous assignment, I should have checked it out fully before just dumping it on my couch.

Daphne already lost her laptop at the restaurant so I don't think I'll even find my lens cap there. Sigh... I feel angry at myself for loosing it.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Ifa bought me lunch a few days ago. I helped her do some editing for her Raya program. We walked around One Utama and we finally settled at Sushi Groove. I've never tried their sushi before and I was pleasantly surprised by its wonderful sushi presentation. It was kind of dark in there.

Ifa at Sushi Groove, One Utama

Now I wonder, with all these highlight on anti-corruption, does Ifa buying me lunch constitute as corruption? I wasn't expecting a lunch, neither did I demand payment for my services. Even though it wasn't my job to help her edit, I did it anyway because it was something that wasn't too difficult to do. A few hours of editing for some sushi. Yes... I work cheap. Some more edit for the company.
I just woke up from a nap. Nothing like feeling a little bit refreshed after a nap. The one thing that bugs me when I'm taking a nap is having my phone ring or getting SMS'es. I have two states of mind, awake and half-asleep. It's like two seperate personalities. The half-asleep mind only wants to go back to the calming Delta-Waves of sleep. That's when I ignore all phone calls and shut of the alarm clock and go back to sleep. When I'm awake in Alpha wave mode I regret having not answered the call earlier or going to work late.

Today at work wasn't as shocking as yesterday. Today, all I had to do was record Mano's last voice-over for this Winners. So that was easy. I thought I could do the audio dubbing but turns out there was an electrical failure and the airconditioner in the AVID suites was out. So I when back home to try and finish it there. I don't like to do audio mixing at home, mainly because the audio levels are different when I transfer it to the deck.

Yesterday was a day full of surprises. A lot of people got their transfer letters. There was a major reshuffle in the production teams for a 3 programs. It came as a shock to most of them. Some were glad, some were sad. In the morning, I came to work and a few of them was telling me they got their transfer letters. I was quite nonchalant about it all. I knew I was already moving on from WHI to the documentary department. It was a transfer I had asked for.

While talking to them in the studio, I suddenly realized I didn't get a letter. So I ran up to my desk and there it was on my table... a messily stapled memo with my transfer assignment printed on it. I'm kind of having doubts about going now after getting a short briefing of what I'm expected to do in the new program. I think I might have bitten of more than I can chew. However, it's a new challenge and I'll take it on.

At first I had the impression my role was going to be quite small, just some editing and I'll be done in two months time. Now my role has included directing (I've never directed actors before), animation with After Effects and a lot travelling all over Peninsular Malaysia. The worst part is, the time schedule extends all the way up to July. There goes my plan of getting married in March.

Like I've said before, I'll miss getting the chance to do social-engineering. The opportunity to make a change. I miss that power.

A few days ago I was signing my promotion conformation letter and I was just having a verbal diarrhoea complaining about not having enough changes. Surpringly, everything that I was complaining about from the lack of changes to even the suggestions I've made came true with the transfer letters. I wonder if the management was already in the process of doing that or what I've said actually did have an effect.

I was telling my manager we can't just keep growing the same crop everytime, it's time to do crop rotation. True enough a few weeks later, all the crops were rotated. I hope there would be new and improved ways of doing things.

I'm glad some of my other colleagues were given more responsibilities. It's not really a promotion but a trial promotion. My company has a habit of doing that. I was doing a producer's job for a year before I actually got promoted to a producer. Same goes for a lot of Production Assistants who are doing the job of reporters but are still production assistants. I figure if the person sucks at the job, they just kicked back to their previous responsibility without having to officially demote the person. No industrial court to go too.

Looks like I finally get to learn Affer Effects. It's been something I've always wanted to do. I'm excited, nervous and apprehensive about the future. It's that nervous tingling feeling of coming changes.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Recently, other people's blog has been indirectly affecting me.

Take for example Sasha Bashir's blog. I saw a picture of my tripod in her blog posting. That made me laugh.

A few weeks ago, Fadli SMS me before we left for Tawau. He wanted to borrow my tripod as he was leaving for South Africa right after Tawau. So I brought along my old tripod. One of it's foot was broken but other than that... it was prefectly usable. The head was a little dodgy already. You couldn't pan on it. The tilt was barely usable. It was mostly good for static shots or timelapse shots Fadli liked to use.

A week later Fadli came back and showed me my tripod. It came back in two pieces. The tripod head had seperated from the body. The treads from the screws holding it together was shorn of. It looked like it was ripped from the socket. My first reaction was like "What the f*#k?!" Fadli said when he got to South Africa and opened the tripod bag, it came apart. The strange thing is, it's not easy to take it apart. It would have needed quite a lot of force... plus it was in a bag!

I have a feeling it came apart at the airport while they were loading my tripod onto the plane or of the plane. Damn cargo handlers! I didn't get any reinbursement for the tripod. Anyway, I wasn't pissed at Fadli. It was an old tripod and I was more amused at its choosen mode of demise. Fadli said he had to had hold it together with two hands to use the tripod.

I just found it amusing to see it on somebody's blog in action. I Macgyvered the tripod before I loaned it to Azlan with my other smaller camera. He wanted to shoot his old house being torn down. I taped it with duct tape before giving it him. I was sniggering and trying really hard not to laugh when I passed it to him. He looked at it and declared he could do a better job fixing it with plumbing tape. Okay... if he says so.

Another way other people's blog have been creeping into my life was through the two episodes I produced (yesterday and today). Yesterday was a pretty lite topic. It was about mother's who blogged about their kids. I was surfing the net the past few days reading blogs and I realized there was a large network of mothers who blogged about their kids. I thought it was really cute seeing this mothers getting enthusiastic about their parenting skills. I randomly picked one and wrote her an email to invite her to the studio.

She even wrote about it in her blog today with the other mothers. Turns out one of the lady with the baby knew me when I was doing Money Matters. That was like so many years ago. It was strange. What a small world. I get a little freaked out when people remember my name and ask if I remember them. I am notorious for my bad memory.

Today's show was more on a serious note. I've been following the developement of NURIN Alert. It's based on the American AMBER Alert. It's a system that is activated to notify people if a child goes missing. A few concerned bloggers incuding Noraini A. Samad and Nurin's uncle started it. I called one of people involved in it and brought them to the studio. Before this, I had already cleared it with my General Manager. Some topics are too controversial for my to go on my own so it's better to touch base with the boss. However, I think 9 out of the 10 times I've approached him with a topic, he's given me the green light. Most of the topics I like doing are quite controversial. The 1 out of 10 times that I didn't get the green light... well, I can't even write about it here.

I had my reporter prepare some backup visuals of Nurin to use during the discussion. I forgot to tell my reporter to remove all visuals of Nurin's body. I know they roll it on TV but I personally find it quite distasteful. I didn't have the timecode for the visual of her body and a few seconds did slip by on screen. So that was kind of gross.

Sometimes I sit back at the end of the day and still wonder if I made a difference. Are more people excited about blogging about their kids? Would society accept NURIN alert? Does anyone watch WHI? Hrmm... I hope so.

The one thing I enjoy about sitting in the control panel producing a live show is the wierd thing that goes on behind the scenes. Normally I'm used to editing on a non-linear system. No pressure... but doing a live show is REAL TIME editing! Can't afford to make a mistake. I'm sitting there with the studio director to my left; the Production Assistants handling the CG machine and tapes playback to my left. I'm talking to my host through their earpieces directing the discussion.

Sometimes I just leave everything on 'auto-pilot'. That's when I just sit back and let the hosts ask their own questions. I usually do that during the sponsored segments where all they had to do is read of the list of prepared questions. Then... we're usually joking around in the studio control room. Sometimes the topic would be really serious but the crew would be laughing and making jokes in the control panel... most of the time nothing to do with what's going on in the studio at all.

I think the part I'll miss the most about doing a live talk show is having an impact on society. Not getting to do social engineering... yeah, I'll miss that. Well, one more show to go!
I just finished editing the last episode of Winners. I still have VO and audio mixing to do tomorrow... but the hard part is basically over. It was really stressful doing this. The last time I did something as stressful as this was when I did Ringgit Sense on my own.

This was made more stressful as I am also currently doing WHI at the same time. In fact, I had to produce WHI yesterday and today!

This are last few WHI episodes I'll be producing. I have one last episode to go. My swan song. I thought I was going to do something really crazy but I just don't have the mental strength anymore. Who knows... I just might pull something out of my ass in the last minute.

Took sometime of to read the news. I was quite shocked when I found out that a kid got killed by another kid in my old school in Bagan Serai. I read this in The Star today:

Tuesday October 23, 2007
MYT 6:02:35 PM

Boy remanded over schoolmate's death

BAGAN SERAI: Police have obtained a seven-day remand order to detain a 14-year-old student of SMK Bagan Serai to help investigation over the killing of a 13-year-old schoolmate.

Kerian OCPD Supt Mat Fauzi Nayan said the boy was brought to the Parit Buntar magistrate's court Monday for remand until Oct 29.

He is held to help investigation into the murder of Remove Class student Loh Wei Kuan.

Loh was pronounced dead upon arrival at the Bagan Serai health clinic about 500m away from the school on Monday afternoon.

A short scuffle over a stolen pen was said to have broken out between the two boys at a corridor of a classroom block.

Supt Mat Fauzi said the suspect was picked up at his home in Kampung Keramat here on Monday.

The case has been classified as murder under Section 302 of the Penal Code.

Supt Mat Fauzi said the police were in the process of completing their investigations to be forwarded to the Public Prosecutor's office for further instructions.

"Our investigation shows that this was an isolated case and not related to any other illegal activities. The matter has been solved with the suspect's arrest," he said.

He declined to reveal the findings of the victim's post-mortem report.

To think that I used to go to this school. I've seen kids fight and blood was even shed. BLoodied noses and cuts... but nobody got killed! In my other secondary school in Petaling Jaya, the boys used to fight over the silliest thing. Some of my classmates would gather at playgrounds or shopping centres with weapons and 'negotiate' with the other guys from other schools. It was like a party.

I've never been to any of this fights. I've seen fights in the school but again... nobody got killed! How terrible is that to die over such a petty thing as a missing pen.
I've been watching South Park instead of editing. Bad, bad, bad.

Poor Butters...

Monday, October 22, 2007

The Sound of Silence

Suddenly, I felt like listening to this song.

The Sound of Silence, by Simon and Garfunkel

Hello darkness, my old friend,
Ive come to talk with you again,
Because a vision softly creeping,
Left its seeds while I was sleeping,
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Still remains
Within the sound of silence.

In restless dreams I walked alone
Narrow streets of cobblestone,
neath the halo of a street lamp,
I turned my collar to the cold and damp
When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of
A neon light
That split the night
And touched the sound of silence.

And in the naked light I saw
Ten thousand people, maybe more.
People talking without speaking,
People hearing without listening,
People writing songs that voices never share
And no one deared
Disturb the sound of silence.

Fools said i,you do not know
Silence like a cancer grows.
Hear my words that I might teach you,
Take my arms that I might reach you.
But my words like silent raindrops fell,
And echoed
In the wells of silence

And the people bowed and prayed
To the neon God they made.
And the sign flashed out its warning,
In the words that it was forming.
And the signs said, the words of the prophets
Are written on the subway walls
And tenement halls.
And whisperd in the sounds of silence.

I bought a Simon and Garfunkel CD in the US a long time ago. It's got a lot of cheesy sad folk songs on it. When ever I'm in a situation, I think 'now, what song would be suitable for this?'

Right now, I'm listening the album I have ripped to mp3. The first part of the song is exactly how I am feeling right now. Sitting here in the dark in my room blogging while it's raining outside.
The gay wizard

I can't sleep. I was sleepy at 11PM but someone send me a SMS that woke me up. It was a little disturbing and it kept me thinking for awhile. I when back to bed and tried to forget about it. A few hours later I was suddenly wide awake staring at my ceiling in the dark.

I just had to sit down on PC to check something on my thumb drive. Damn it, I made a mistake. Shit happens.

Now I'm wide awake, so I go on the BBC news website and I find out that there are such things as gay wizards.

JK Rowling outs Dumbledore as gay
Harry Potter author JK Rowling has revealed that one of her characters, Hogwarts school headmaster Albus Dumbledore, is gay.
She made her revelation to a packed house in New York's Carnegie Hall on Friday, as part of her US book tour.

She took audience questions and was asked if Dumbledore found "true love".

"Dumbledore is gay," she said, adding he was smitten with rival Gellert Grindelwald, who he beat in a battle between good and bad wizards long ago.

The audience gasped, then applauded. "I would have told you earlier if I knew it would make you so happy," she said.

"Falling in love can blind us to an extent," she added, saying Dumbledore was "horribly, terribly let down" and his love for Grindelwald was his "great tragedy".

"Oh, my god," Rowling, 42, concluded with a laugh, "the fan fiction".

Fan sites have long speculated on Dumbledore's sexuality as he was known for having a mysterious, troubled past.

Rowling told the audience that while working on the planned sixth Potter film, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, she saw the script carried a reference to a girl who was once of interest to Dumbledore.

She said she ensured director David Yates was made aware of the truth about her character.

Gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell welcomed the news about Dumbledore and said: "It's good that children's literature includes the reality of gay people, since we exist in every society.

"But I am disappointed that she did not make Dumbledore's sexuality explicit in the Harry Potter book. Making it obvious would have sent a much more powerful message of understanding and acceptance."

And a spokesman for gay rights group Stonewall added: "It's great that JK has said this. It shows that there's no limit to what gay and lesbian people can do, even being a wizard headmaster."

Rowling also did a brief reading from the seventh book in her best-selling series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, as part of her Open Book Tour of the US - her first there for seven years.

She said she regarded her novels as a "prolonged argument for tolerance" and urged her fans to "question authority".

But she added that not everyone likes her work. Christian groups have alleged the books promote witchcraft. The author said her revelation about Dumbledore would give them one more reason.

The seventh Potter book broke sales records on both sides of the Atlantic when it was published in July, selling 11 million copies in 24 hours.

The fifth film adaptation of the series, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix was released this summer. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is due for release late next year.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Just some Hari Raya mood photos

I took some pictures on WHI just before and after Raya. Check out the set, it's got all these cheesy Raya props. The plastic ketupat and Christmas bling bling lights.

Wanita Hari Ini
Adibah Noor was on the show 3 times, including today! She's popular and an easily likeable person. Farah Fauzana, Wahid and Lan Pet Pet was also there on the same show promoting some Raya program. Lan and Wahid are quite subdued when not on air. They're uncontrolable when on air. We just 'release' them and they do their thing. In the picture, Wardina (in blue) is actually talking to Lan who's hiding behind the sofa.

Wardina, Lan Pet Pet, Azean
Wardina, Lan and heavily pregnant Azean. I think this was on Hari Raya eve.

me and wardina and azizah
This one I took today. One of the last few show's I'll be producing for WHI. Wardina and Azizah were the host for the day. Both still have some of their makeup on but their changed out of their sponsored Raya wardrobe already.

me and wardina and azizah
Wardina brought us flowers from Cameron. Look at Azizah laughing gleefully like a school girl. Azean took this photo for us.

Me and Wardina
Wardina smirking. She warned me not to photoshop this into a Playboy picture... now where would she get an idea like that? I think she looks older than me.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

I'm waiting for my mechanic to call me to tell if my car is ready. Since I'm waiting I thought I'll write about this.

I go to the same mechanic in Paramount and occasionally they send me home if the wait is too long. The chick who runs the admin at mechanic is a cute chick. So when she drove up in a little red Kenari to send me home, I didn't think much until I stepped into the car.

interior of a a Hello Kitty Kenari
OH MY GOD... I asked her who's car was this since I knew she drove a cool Toyota SEG. She said it was someone's else car. I asked her if it was a female college student. She said no, it was actually a guy's car. I almost bursted out laughing. I remembered the guy who drove up in the car to the mechanic now. A skinny Chinese dude with long hair reaching almost to his eyes.

interior of a a Hello Kitty Kenari
My mechanic said she was actually scarred to drive the car... what if the cops pulled her over? The bend near my house is notorious for police road blocks. She asked me if there was a police road block when I came down the same way and I said no.

Check out the pink faux fur in the car! I didn't even dare touch it. She said it actually cost RM2,000 to do up the car like that! Crazy! Is that going to like raise up the value of the car? I would have imagined a teeny booper college student going all crazy with the car... but a dude? Oh man... I hope he has a good story to tell if anyone ask him.

interior of a a Hello Kitty Kenari
Oh man... look at the LV logo padding. Mr Vitton would be shocked.

interior of a a Hello Kitty Kenari

What animal died to make that fur? Scary... I was sitting in the car and I just had to flip out my camera and started taking pictures. My mechanic was slightly amused. It was more amusing since my mechanic was driving the car... she reminds me more of like those hot chicks who drift cars in The Fast and Furious movies. This car is so not her type.


This, is the Playboy bunny logo if you didn't know. Ignore the number 3994 at the bottom (too lazy to photoshop it out). I ripped this of some poster site. This logo is a recognised globally in any country that has American TV programming. It's on par with Coca-Cola's logo.

When I was in the U.S., one of the junk mail that I got was an offer for 2 magazine subscription for 12 months at a discount. So I looked through what was available and I ordered Premiere, a movie magazine since my minor was in Film Studies and Playboy Magazine. Before this, I've seen them selling it on the campus bookstore before (can you imagine Malaysian campuses selling Playboy?). No browsing was allowed. In secondary school, we always joked about the raunchy pictures in Playboy, even though none of us has ever seen one before. So I thought subscribing to one would be fun.

I have to say, once I got my first Playboy magazine, after scanning through the 'fun' pictures I started reading their articles and I was wowed. They had some extremely good liberal articles and difinitely fitted their gentleman's magazine title. I loved reading their interviews they had with prominent people. It wasn't just a magazine with naked girls in them... they actually had some insightful articles and personality profiles. Their editorial was liberal, freedom of speech was their key thing. Hey, when you're in the business of selling pictures of naked girls... all the more for freedom of speech yeah?

I wished I still had the magazines. I think I actually brought back 2 but I lost them already. I have a totally different perception of people who read Playboy after subscribing to them. Now I think of Playboy readers as the same demographic as GQ readers. Smart, driven and sophisticated.

Now in Malaysia, they have Playboy merchandise too. Who would have imagined, a magazine that Hugh Heffner started in his kitchen would have been such an amazing global brand?

By the way, Chui Yan actually got me a Playboy sunglasses for my birthday. I was smiling at the irony. Before that, I would never use their merchandise but since she got it for me, I wear it. She says I look 'cool' in it. I guess it doesn't matter if I didn't bring back my Playboy mags, it came back to me in another form.

I was walking around Chicago many years ago after a snowstorm and was looking for a building I could stop by to warm myself. I stumbled into this skyscaper and my friend Joe's eye lighted up. I looked up at what he was looking at and lo and behold... it was Playboy's corporate headquarters! I quickly ask Joe to take my picture. In the background is the guard actually walking up to us to chase us away. Farnee...

Find Wally

I've always been amused by the easter eggs producers put in their show. I've been doing that in the shows I produce too. Sort of my idea of social re-engineering. In most of the programs I edit, I like to play Find Wally (Waldo in the U.S.).

In current show I'm doing, I had a few cameo shots of myself in there just for kicks. I had my hand in one episode. I see the trill directors like Quetin Tarrantino and M. Night Shyamalan (did you know his full name is Manoj Nelliattu Shyamalan? I wonder if anyone calls him Manoj on the set) get by appearing in cameo appearances in their own movies. It's just something fun to do I guess.

Another easter egg I have in the current program I'm editing is the songs I used. They're all from a certain era. Actually, the idea wasn't really mine. I didn't do the first episode so I inherited the rest of the show, concept and treatment from another producer. The first episode had a song by ABBA and I thought it would be a fun continuity if we had songs from the same era. Something cheesy to play through out the whole season.

Some episodes didn't have any songs at all. Some of them just didn't fit in any of the songs that comes to my head. Some of the songs just came to me in an instant. One of the episodes had a bulletproof vest, the song I picked was Pat Benatar's 'hit me with your best shot'. Another one was about a business woman, I thought about for one whole day and I finally remember hearing the chorus of this song:

Oh yes I am wise
But it's wisdom born of pain
Yes, I've paid the price
But look how much I gained
If I have to, I can do anything
I am strong (strong)
I am invincible (invincible)
I am woman

It was an old feminist song by Helen Reddy. I thought it was fitting. Putting the songs into the show puts a smile on my face. I wonder if anyone out there actually gets it. Doesn't matter, I get it. I let the lyrics tell the story of the person in every episode.

I have to becareful in picking songs. I have to google and wikipedia each song before I use it. Some songs may sound innocent but if you read about the history of its origins, it may mean something totally different.

For example, I love listening to Peter, Paul and Mary. Their song Puff The Magic Dragon is a popular children's song now. However, back then a lot of people assumed the song was about smoking opium. You know... chasing the magic dragon smoke.

Then there's also the song by the Beatles, Lucy in The Sky with Diamonds. Lennon claims it was a drawing done by his song that inspired him. A lot of people thought the song was an acronym for LSD. Whoa... way out.

Another type of Easter Egg I've always contemplated putting in is a flash frame. How this is done is by putting in a one frame shot of something totally not related to the current sequence of event on screen. In the movie, Fight Club, Brat Pitt slots in one frame of pornography into a cinema movie reel. It goes by so fast people are not sure what they see. I found that really amusing. No, I won't put any porno on national TV.

Me and most of my colleague can notice a one frame difference. We've been editing visuals so long, we know when just one frame flashes. We call it a jump cut. In the PAL video system, there is 24 frames in one second. So it's pretty fast. To the normal person, it looks like an abrupt flash. It's harder to detect when it's between two different sequence. Often, this is edited in by mistake. I see a lot of colleagues (including myself) replacing a shot on a tape and marking the wrong out on the timecode by one frame. They accidentally leave in one frame from the old shot.

When I do Quality Control and watch someone's editing, I look out for stuff like that. Most of it makes me laugh, I don't get angry because I make the same mistakes too. Learning to edit is one of the hardest thing any broadcast journalist has to learn. It's more of an art than a science. Easy to learn the basic, takes forever to learn how to do it well.

Now... I wonder what easter egg I can put into the last episode I have to edit. This should be fun.
I was surfing the net a little and I came across this music video on YouTube. I googled the chick. Turns out she's and up and coming musician. Check out her Japanese / Irish features. Extremely nice complexion!

At the party I was at earlier, I heard the original Rihanna version. This Marie Digby does a cover version of it. I think I prefer her acoustic version. I've downloaded a few of her other acoustic cover versions. Nice. She's got a young innocent voice. I like that. Reminds me of the young version of Jewel... or even Vivian Chow.
I just got home. It's late. I think I'm coming down with a sore troat... too much cigar smoke. I hate tobacco smoke.

Daphne asked me to shoot a surprise party for her. Turns out to be the most hedonistic party I've ever been too (well, in my standards). It was pretty wild, I don't think I can even write about it... I don't want to get any of them in trouble. Malaysia in general is just too conservative.

I felt like I was in the movie Syriana. In the beginning of the movie, George Clooney is a CIA agent in Iran. He gets to see a totally different side of Iran. On the outside, Iran looks like a conservative Muslim country, but Clooney gets to see the young Iranians partying the night away. I kind of felt like that tonight.

Just waiting for my hair to dry before I hit the bed. I think I must have shot like 1 and a half hour of footage. I haven't even edited the last episode of Winners. Good thing I took yesterday and today of. I don't think I could wake up to go to work. Those poor fools that were at the party all had to go to work in the morning.

I met some really drunk chicks tonight. I worry how some of them are going to be driving on the road. I have a fear of drunk people... actually, I have a fear of anyone who is not rational. You just can't talk to them... when they try and talk to me, I don't understand them.

My troat is sore and my inner ear hurts from all the loud music. I think next time, I probably won't want to shoot anymore parties like this unless they pay me a lot of money. I hope I don't get sick tomorrow. I got a show to produce on Thursday and I need to do prep work tomorrow before the show.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant

Recently, I when with Chui Yan and her mother to a Korean restaurant in Kota Damansara to have dinner. We've seen it before a few times, it has quite a prominent signboard at a corner lot above a mamak restaurant.

The reason I like Korean BBQ is that they really pamper you. The waiters cook the meat for you and do everything else. No need to know when to turn the meat over. I've tried the Korean BBQ restaurants in Sri Hartamas and even the ones in SS2. They're good. My personal favourite is the one in SS2 opposite Coffee Bean... forgot it's name.

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant
Anyway, the first impression of this restaurant is that you have to take the elevator to the third floor. In my mind, I was thinking... if I over eat, I can always exercise by walking down. As we sat down, the service was pretty fast. I looked at their place mat, looks like this was their fourth branch. Looks like they're doing well.

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant
I like the newer Korean BBQ's that use this type of stove. The type where they have an exhaust overhead that sucks away the charcoal and grease smoke.

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant
This is the Tauchu condiments that they serve. I wonder if Koreans have Soya Sauce like we do as a condiment also?

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant
Green Tea as usual. Helps with digesting all the meat later.

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant
The one thing that impressed me about this restaurant was the service. This waiter who was serving us was extremely attentive. He was super efficient. I looked around the restaurant and peeked into the kitchen, almost all their staff wasn't korean. They either looked Burmese or Pakistani. This waiter of ours was quite intuitive to our needs. He knew when to get things for us and he never got in the way even though he was around often to BBQ the meat for us.

Check out the number of side dishes they served us. My favourite are those spicy cockles they serve.

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant
This is like the Korean version of an Otak-Otak. Looked like one, but didn't taste like one. I think it was made of flour.

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant
Look at that purple colour. Looked like Barney barfed all over my salad! I didn't eat it. The purple sauced scared me away.

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant
The usual Kimchi side dish. This one wasn't too spicy unlike the other places so I eat this one. Chui Yan prefers spicy stuff.

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant

We had pork and lamb. The pork wasn't well marinated. Somehow I think it wasn't marinated long enough. The lamb was good though, the marinate was very sweet.

Daorae Korean BBQ Restaurant
After eating all that meat, I had to visit the loo. I had to make space for all that extra food! I was pleasantly surprised by the toilet in the restaurant. Check out their toilet bowl. It was cooler than some of the toilet's I've seen posh hotels I tell you!

Overall, I like this restaurants mostly for it's excellent service. Chui Yan left the waiter a RM5 tip but he was so confused over it, the manager had to explain what was a tip to him. Poor guy, never got a tip before I think.

The captain even escorted us to the elevator. That was nice. It was kind of dark at the stairwell. Looks like I didn't get the chance to walk down after the meal after all!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Oh man, it's 7AM already and I'm still awake. I was going through Facebook and looking at the groups the people I know in there join. I saw a journalist group and I was about to join then I realized I might not fit the definition of a journalist anymore.

I actually had to look up the word journalist in wikipedia just to see what people are defining it by these days.

'A journalist is a person who practices journalism, the gathering and dissemination of information about current events, trends, issues and people.'

So I guess I might fit the definition some what. I don't go out on daily assignments anymore. I don't exactly practice journalism. I'm far from objective.

I managed to crawl through my journalism ethics class with a C when it was expected more than half the class to fail. I've never been so proud of a C.

I don't even have an official government press tag. Mine expired years ago. I was supposed to have it renewed but I got lazy. I can still do it but the hassle of going down to Bernama to get it done is too much. Besides... no one ever asked me for one ever since mine expired. Everywhere I when, I was invited. The places I wasn't invited... I had a video camera and a vest with my company's logo on it. That was my press tag.

I haven't been to a press conference in ages. The last press conference I was at, I was at the other end actually giving an interview. That was so freaking wierd. I just started spewing out stadardized quotes for the reporters. Looking back, it was quite funny. I guess I did learn something from all those press conferences I've attended.
My body clock is so screwed up now. I just finished watching a DVD, The Invisible. A remake of a Swedish movie. It's a different take on those 'Ghost' movie where the main character is invisible and no one can see him. A bit of a voyuer kind of movie.

Anyway, I was in Pavilion today. It's the latest mall in Jalan Bukit Bintang. I wonder how that Malton Bhd got away with making such a huge mall in such a high density area. That road was already jammed up before the mall. Now, with the new Pavilion, it's even worst. Tearing down BBGS was such a farce. It was a historic building and now look what stands in its place... a place where all the old girls of BBGS shop.

centre of Pavilion

centre of Pavilion

I managed to take some pictures of the mall. It's well lit and quite spacious. There are no fast food chains here. No supermarkets either. So you can tell it's catered to the high end market. No place for the lower end income groups to hang out.

JCO donut shop in Pavilion shopping centre, Jalan Bukit Bintang

I managed to get a quick shot of this while I was going down the escalator. This is the famous donut shop everyone was talking about in Pavilion. Look at the long queue. It's crazy. Just for donuts? I've tried one before yesterday that my brother brought back, it was good, but not worth the long lines.

The restaurants were packed when we when there. We ended up eating at Laksa Shack. Not my first choice but it had the shortest waiting line. My advice, eat before you visit this place. They have limited restaurants and no food courts. The mall is designed in a way so that all the visitors here are pushed to the few restaurants. Good way to ensure sales for them I guess.

It's free 2 hours parking if you spend RM100. I barely spend RM30 so I had to pay RM4 for the 1 hour 42 minutes I was there.

Getting out of there, we ended up in a traffic jam on Jalan Bukit Bintang. It was caused by people parking their cars on a yellow line blocking up one lane. That caused a bottle neck and people had to squeeze around those selfish bastards.

Idiots who cause jam at Jalan Bukit Bintang

Check out those cars on the left of the picture. They're just sitting there waiting while people are all jammed up. I wish Pavilion would post some guards there to shoo people away like how they do at One Utama.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Running on Vista

I have two Windows OS on my PC, Vista and Windows XP Professional. I have it both running on seperate hard disk so I can choose which one I want booted up from the BIOS menu. I haven't been using the Vista for 3-4 months now. I've been using the XP for work in the past few months. I just loaded Vista a few hours ago. I downloaded this wierd file through limewire and it was corrupted. I couldn't delete it. I had to start up Vista hoping that Vista could read the file and delete it. I'm glad it worked.

It's wierd having two OS on my PC. Even though Vista is the newer OS, I haven't touch it in months. It feels a little dated since all the newest changes I've made in XP are not in this OS. New bookmarks are missing. All the data files like my mp3's are still there. Not sure if I like staying in this Vista. I think I'm going back to XP... this Vista is just too alien.
Cuti Raya

I just woke up from a nap. I haven't taken a nap on a Sunday afternoon in months ever since I've been working 7 days a week for 2 months now.

It's the long Raya weekend holidays. I didn't visit anyone this Raya. I know, it's so unMalaysian but I just feel so lazy and needed time to unwind from work. I just have one episode left to edit. I hope to get that done in the next few days time.

I have stack of DVD's to watch. So far I watched 28 Weeks Later and Children of Men. Both are British movies with similar themes. Both have refugee camps and are quite depressing some what. I think I enjoyed watching Children of Men more... better ending than 28 Weeks Later. In the later, it's just a Zombie movie. You know what happens in a zombie movie, everyone gets eaten. The two that deserved to get eaten don't get eaten in the end. In the movie, two kids break out of their camp to pack things in their home. They find their mom who's a carrier of the zombie virus, Rage. Their father kisses their mother and infects him. He turns into a zombie and then the fun starts. Those two kids should have been shot while they were running out of the camp.

The gun battle scenes in Children of Men is pretty realistic. They use handheld shots and in one scene there's even blood splatter on the camera. Reminds me of one of those photo journalist that are embedded with soldiers in war zones. There were half blown up people with body parts every where. Gory.

I think watching British movies are always bleak. I think it's their weather. They always have overcast clouds and their lighting tends to be darker. Their dialog is a bit depressing.

I also got to watch Japan is Sinking. The Japanese version of a disaster movie. Only in this movie, the whole world isn't about to end... only Japan is about to get destroyed. The special effects are pretty cool in this one. This movie has similar themes as another Hollywood disaster movie I watched, The Core. Both have problems brewing under the mantle of the earth.

Japan sure makes some slow disaster movie. Their editing is too slow. The pacing is slower with more character development than Hollywood type disaster movies. The premise of the movie is pretty simple, Japan is sinking into the ocean so they have limited to evacuate Japan and meanwhile, they're trying to stop Japan from sinking into the ocean. The funny part is, none of the other Japanese allies like the Americans help in the evacuation of Japan. So much for allies.

I also have the chance to walk around The Garden, the newest mall next to MidValley Megamall. It's got a design way better than Sunway Pyramid's new wing. It's a more organic design with curved lines. Sunway Pyramid's mall is just all straight lines and the ceiling height is too low. Makes the place looks dark. I'm hoping to visit Pavilion today. I hope YTL designed a better mall.

Friday, October 12, 2007

I just watched Bourne Ultimatum... and mind you, I watched it in the cinema, not on the pirated DVD even though they're selling the clear version.

Was quite a hassle getting the ticket. I had to buy it online in the GSC website 3 days ago. I collected the ticket yesterday since I was at One Utama already. Finally got to watch it earlier in the evening.

The movie was good though I wished I watched the second movie again before watching this one. I totally forgot how some characters are related to each other. This movie still has the great car chase and crash scenes. The fight scenes were chaotic with the handheld camera styles but it fits in with the overall chaotic style of the movie.

I'm listening to the title song from the movie now, Moby - Extreme Ways. Moby rocks!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

I like reading Taoist stories. They have some philosophical insights and are quite beautiful to read.


Chuang Tzu, ancient Chinese Taoist, once experienced a dream in which he was a butterfly fluttering to & fro. In the dream he had no awareness of his individuality as a person; he was simply a butterfly. Suddenly, he awoke and found that once again he was a human laying in bed. But then he thought to himself, "Was I before a man who dreamt about being a butterfly, or am I now a butterfly who dreams about being a man?"

In Your Hands
A young man caught a small bird, and held it behind his back. He then asked, "Master, is the bird I hold in my hands alive or dead." The boy thought this was a grand opportunity to play a trick on the old man. If the master answered "dead", it would be let loose into the air. If the master answered "alive", he would simply wring its neck. The master spoke, "The answer is in your hands".

Zen Master lived the simplest kind of life in a little hut at the foot of a mountain. One evening, while he was away, a thief sneaked into the hut only to find there was nothing in it to steal. The Zen Master returned and found him. "You have come a long way to visit me," he told the prowler, "and you should not return empty handed. Please take my clothes as a gift." The thief was bewildered, but he took the clothes and ran away. The Master sat naked, watching the moon. "Poor fellow," he mused, " I wish I could give him this beautiful moon."
Lego Tower

When I was young, I used to have a lego crate my mother bought for me from a garage sale. I used to make ships and houses out of it. I used to play jaws with the ship. In the Steven Spielberg movie Jaws, the little ship slowly sank after it got attacked by a large great while shark. I thought that was cool. I had some action figures on the lego ship and it will slowly break apart and everyone gets eaten by a shark. Yeah, I'm morbid.

Today I when to Toys R Us. It's Mandy's favourite store in One Utama. My favourite store is Home Fix and MPH.

While I was waiting for Mandy, I sat down at the Lego table they had for kids and started building with the blocks. I almost forgot how fun it was to build something with Lego blocks. At first, I wanted to build a hollow pyramid then I decided I'll go for a large tower instead.

Lego monument I made at Toys R Us

Lego monument I made at Toys R Us

Those round chairs are uncomfortable to sit on. I think they're designed that way so that adults can't sit on it. Hah, didn't stop me from playing with the Lego. It would be cool if I had more Lego pieces. Then I would have actually made the tower about a metre tall. I want the next kid to come by to be awed by the architectural design of my tower. I wanted it to say "look at my awsome tower, see if you can beat that!"

heh... yes, I'm still a kid at heart.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

I watched Jackass 2. Man, the only way I can describe it is 'depraved' and 'degenerate'. The grosses part was when Steve O put a leech to his eyeball. That was scarrier than any horror movie I've seen. It was scarry because it was real, it wasn't special effects. These guys really love punishing themselves.

I was admiring the cameras they were using. Looks like they were using Panasonic's DVX102B. They have some pretty cool microphones. I wonder where I can get their same boom mics.

I have a cheap RM90 one I bought from Jalan Pasar. It's this china brand shotgun mic. It's a little too long to fit on my camera. It actually gets in the shot if it's extended too far out. Cumbersome.

I'm amazed that these guys actually shot in MiniDV and managed to transfer this movie to film format for widescreen cinemas. Not sure what it looks like in the cinema since I watched it on DVD. You could tell it was shot on a Panasonic MiniDV by the bright radiant colours. Film has a different gamma range.

The guy Chris Pontius aka party boy is cool. He's got a deep voice but man, the guy is just as depraved as the rest of the bunch. I think the first movie was funnier than this one. In the first movie, they shitted in a demo toilet set in a hardware shop. Now that's funny.

Watching this movie and I think "shit, like that also can make movie... I also can do better".

My Panasonic AG-DVC32

Panasonic DVC32 MiniDV Video Camera, originally uploaded by luxen.

Going to work in awhile. Stayed up the whole night editing... actually more like procrastinating and did a hack job editing in the last minute. Now I can't go back to bed because I have to go back to work.

I was just admiring my camera. Even though I had it for a year now, I still like holding it in my hand and admiring it.

Its got a really easy to remember serial number... 1. It's the first camera of it's batch! My camera is actually the demo model Panasonic uses to demonstrate to corporate customers. They were phasing out the model and someone who knew the Panasonic manager asked on my behalf if they were selling it. I got it including the XLR connector for RM7900.

Most people wouldn't have seen this little Panasonic MiniDV. Even the people at the Bintang Maju shop in Maju Junction have never seen this camera even though they are Panasonic dealers. There's another Sony the same size as this but I think mine is better (yes, I'm biased!).

It's light, small and has excellent pictures. Almost the same as the 102B camera by Panasonic.

The camera's missing a screw on the top now, I replaced it with a 20 cent screw. Other than that, I religously clean it. I can't stand spots on the lens.

My camera is the PAL version, the NTSC version is called AG-DVC30. Looks exactly the same, just that it's in PAL. It's unique feature is it's nightshot. I don't think any other Panasonic pro cameras have this. I haven't really had a chance to use it on any shoots yet. However, I do play around with it and it looks great. Instead of the Sony 'green' night shot, this one is grey. It has infrared lights on the bottom that turn on to light up what you're shooting.

The only thing that really bugs me now is the shoulder strap. Originally I had it tied to the back of the camera. Then I changed the position to the top of the camera. Now it always hangs down in front of the lens and gets in the shot. Hate it when that happens.

I think me and the camera are going to have a lot of fun!

I shouldn't be listening to Peter, Paul and Mary (PPM) so late at night. They have some of the saddest tearjerking songs. Makes me feel so... lonesome.

Peter, Paul & Mary - Early Morning Rain

In the early morning rain, with a dollar in my hand
With an aching in my heart and my pockets full of sand
I'm a long way from home, and I miss my loved one so
In the early morning rain with no place to go

Out on runway number nine, big 707 set to go
But I'm stuck here on the ground where the cold winds blow
Well the liquor tasted good and the women were all fast
There she goes my friend, o she's rolling now at last

Here the mighty engines roar, see the silver bird on high
She's away and westward bound, high above the clouds she'll fly
Where the early rain don't fall and the sun always shines
She'll be flying o'er my home in about three hours time

This old airport's got me down, it's no earthly use to me
Cause I'm stuck here on the ground, cold and drunk as I might be
You can't jump a jet plane like you can a freight train
So I'd best be on my way in the early morning rain

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

It's late in the middle of the night again. I'm listening to Ella Fitzgerald and Loius Armstrong. I encoded the whole album to MP3. A gem of an album I bought in the bargain bin in the US. Just puts me in the nostalgic mood...

Anyway, I spend the day shooting in Seremban today. I haven't been to Seremban in years... I think it's been more than 20 years since I ventured into Seremban. Back then, I remembered it was a small town. Today... it's still a small town! We drove around the main Seremban town pass the old bus station and the government buildings. Most of the shop houses look like they were from 1920's.

We were in a small factory in the industrial area. The whole time shooting, I was really sleepy. My body clock is all screwed up. I'm wide awake at wierd hours like now and in the daytime I'm sleepy.

The factory I was at made precision tools. I spied their screws and I asked them if they made screws. They said yes. My eyes brightened up. I told them about the missing screw on my camera and they opened their little drawers and started pulling out screws. Damn, they have a lot of screws. They gave me a few 3mm screws. I was so delighted with my lucky find. When I got home, I discovered it was the wrong tread size. What I needed was 4mm. Damn it! I almost had it!

Anyway... this Ella Fitzgerald and Loius Armstrong calms me down. I used to listen to it a lot in the US. I will pop it into my computer and let it play while I was just hanging out in my room. I used to listen to it in my car in Malaysia but I stopped doing that. I was worried the CD would get damaged. Now that my car radio has a MP3 player with a USB slot, I have a 2GB thumb drive attached to it now. I download a lot of songs and audio books into it.

Before I had the Mp3 player in the car, I used to talk to myself a lot of in the car. I didn't listen to the radio a lot. I don't like listening to radio DJ's talking in the morning. I'm a slow starter. I don't like people talking to me in the morning, I'm grumpy.

So what do I talk to myself about? Mostly philosophy. Wierd questions run through my head while commuting to work and back. Take for example, the past few days while driving I've been wondering why humans want to believe in God. The existence of God is one of the most highly debated topic. Something quite hard to proof. Most of the discussion is now on the proof of Intelligent Design instead of Evolution.

Me, I don't rely too much on God. There probably is a God... or a few Gods. I'm a Buddhist and Buddha says my own salvation depends on me. I make my own karma. No one can bear my burden for me. I'm always reminded of the quote "There are no atheist in a fox hole". It basically means that in times of desperation, we all want to believe in something. I believe it's a human condition as a result of evolution that made us want to believe in God. When we were a few ladders down the evolution chain, we couldn't explain things so we attributed it to God. It was comforting to know that we could affect nature or the course of our lifes by trying to get the favour of God. It's so hard wired into our brain. It's what we do, like how civilizations every where invented societies, bows, growing crops and building homes. It's all random I say. They say it's highly improbable that life started on its own. Hey, but it could right? That's why they don't say it could never happen... they say highly improbable. There is a small probability of it happening... and guess what, it happened! Here we are!

I believe in evolution. Yes, we probably came from apes. Even if Intelligent design is true and that God (or aliens) created life, we have free will (or so we think). One hot summer afternoon in my philosophy class while I was dozing of, I briefly remember my proffesor arguing whether we have free will or not. It goes like this, we are all the result of previous circumstances.

Take for example, a criminal is found guilty for murder of his wife. The judge says it was premeditated murder. Basically the guy thought it out and planned the murder. So it goes to show there was free will in the eyes of the law. However, what if the guy is a victim of his circumstances. What if the guy grew up in a home here abusing women was common? What if the diet he ate everyday affected his mood swings? What if the chemicals in the brains were not of his own control and the synapses in his brain fired in such a way to make him murder someone? Victim of circumstances or free will? Hard to tell the difference isn't it?

That's why I forgive easily... most of the time. Doesn't mean I don't hold a grudge. I always see 'the bigger picture'. When the waiter is slow in service, I try to imagine what the person is going through. Could be they had too many customers or they were distracted. However, if they're just busy chit-chatting away with another colleague then I get annoyed. So for me, there is a fine line that I draw when I decide if someone is the victim of circumstances or if it's their free will that made them do what they do.

Someone gave me a book on the history of philosophy. I read parts of it and all this writers would have been bloggers if they were alive today. They wrote volumes of book and most of them were things that just popped into their head. Hey, that's philosophy. The only reason they got famous was because books were so hard to come by. Today, there's a glut of written material out there. Now we just save the blogs we like to read in our bookmarks. That has become our socrates, Homer and Nietzsche.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Toilet bowl in car trunk

Toilet bowl in car trunk, originally uploaded by luxen.

Don't pictures like these make you go "hrmm... huh? What?"

Azlan was showing me the toilet bowl he was carrying around in the boot of his car. He was doing some renovations for his new apartment. I thought it would make for a nice picture to show people his 'mobile' toilet.

Would have been a nicer picture if the toilet bowl was facing the camera.

Just watched Planet Terror, a Robert Rodriguez movie. It's a homage to old B-Grade horror movies. Man, it was cheesy. Lots of blood, violence and hot chicks. That Rose McGowan is hot. She sings the songs in the movie soundtrack too. She could have been one of those Film Noir chicks from the 1940's. Could have walked into Humphrey Bogart's office in Maltese Falcon instead of Mary Astor.

Before that, I when to Sunway Pyramid's new wing with Chui Yan to have a look. Still smells of fresh cement and paint. Walked around a bit, it's been a few months since I visited the place. Everything looks different. I still prefer One Utama. Pyramid is a little dark and their corridors aren't as spacious and high as One Utama. Feels a bit dingy, kind of like how Sungai Wang Plaza feels like.

I was telling Chui Yan about how my film professor asked us what was our favourite movies of all time. Brad Chisholm did a survey every year with his final year film students and would write down the answer. I choose Dumb and Dumber. I know, stupid choice but that movie was so funny back then. Brad was kind of surprised and said he always thought Chungking Express was my favourite movie. I said yeah, but going by the movie which I watched the most, it would have to be Dumb and Dumber and Terminator 2.

Looking back now, my list of all time favourite movie has changed. Actually this is more like the list of movies that has the most influence on me. I think the list should be more like these (in no particular order):

1. Chungking Express
I love Wong Kar Wai's cinematography in this movie. The second story with Tony Leung and Faye Wong is my favourite. I found it really sweet and cute how Faye Wong would slowly change his apartment without Tony Leung noticing it.The California Dreaming soundtrack was cool too. Till today, when ever I shoot, I always try to emulate a bit of Wong Kar Wai's odd camera angles. He has low angles and places the camera in odd places.

2. Forrest Gump
I love the soundtrack in this movie. Till today, the music has influenced the choice of music and era that I like to listen too. My favourite character is Gary Senise as Lt. Dan. Really heartwarming. For some time, I actually thought Forrest Gump was a real person and the movie was based on his life. Funny.

3. Dumb and Dumber
Okay, this movie was really cool when I was in Form 4 & 5 just because it had the dumbest jokes. I must have watched it more than 5 times. It was so funny then. I don't know if I'll still laugh now. I think Jim Carrey probably wouldn't do those type of roles anymore too.

4. Pulp Fiction
Now this movie still rocks in my book. It still has really cool dialog in the movie. My favourite part is when Butch (played by Bruce Willis) escapes and decides turn back and rescue Marsellus Wallace (played by Ving Rhames). He looks around for a weapon and finally settles on a Samurai Sword. Man, that was so cool when he finally got his revenge. The Dialog between Samuel L. Jackson and John Travolta is memorable too. Everytime someone tells me they don't eat pork, I think of the dialog between the two of them.

5. From Dusk To Dawn
A gore fest. I like the cool Quentin Tarrantino dialog in this one too. George Clooney has really cool lines in the movie. My favourite is when he says "Everyone, be cool. You, be cool". Sometimes I feel like saying that to Chui Yan when she freaks out but she wouldn't get the joke.

6. Terminator 2
I love the T1000. Awsome evil character. In school we used to play Role Playing Games and we'll all play Terminator games. We all wanted to be the T1000. We made up storey lines and we'll all play it out.

7. Something About Mary
Strange as it is, I found the movie quite romantic. It was funny and cute.

8. Indiana Jones trilogy
After watching the series, I really loved reading up on history. Till today, any movie that I watched that had history as a basis for its plot, I will read up about it on the internet.

9. Star Wars 4, 5, and 6.
Don't really have to explain this one. This was about the same time I was really into origami also. I had made my own origami creations of the Star Wars fleet like the X-Wing fighter and battle cruiser.

10. Gladiator
I loved the first 10 minutes of the movie. The opening battle scene was awsome. I love movies with medieval battle scenes. Probably have to start a different list of movies with awsome medieval battle scenes.

11. Princess Mononoke
Japanese animation. Really haunting soundtrack. First time I was really into watching an Anime. The story flow was so gentle. Characters were very well flashed out. They depended on their little body language movements to tell emotions. Was really nice.

12. Jackie Chan's Police Story series
The stunts in his movies are great. The best part... watching the end credits to see how he did it. Really cool. My hats of to him.

13. Akira Kurosawa's Yojimbo, Sanjuro and 7 Samurai's
I'm lumping this 3 movies together because they're great samurai movies. They have really got plot lines. I like how each of the movie opens also. Of these 3, my favourite would be Sanjuro.

14. When Harry Met Sally
I was actually forced to watch this movie repeated times because I took a communications class in KDU and we had to analyse the movie. So me and Sim watched it a few times and we had to write a paper about it. Okay, quite a romantic movie. Great soundtrack by Harry Connick Jr.

15. Once Upon A Time In China 1, 2 and 3
This was my first introduction to Jet Li. The soundtrack was inspirational, though till today I have no idea what the lyric is about.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Don't drive in KL for the next few days until Hari Raya is over. That's the lesson I learned today. I woke up at 11AM and remembered I had to pick up my standby light I had send for repairs in Ampang. I called the shop and the guy said he closed at 1:30PM. I thought it was a lot of time... little did I know, it was going to take me an hour and a half just to get there!

I took the federal highway and the traffic was pretty clear until I got to KL. It was just a slow crawl all the way. I managed to get onto the Ampang elevated highway and it was a smooth drive on it. The RM1.50 toll to drive on it was worth it. My airconditioning stopped working so I winded down the window, luckily I was driving at a nice cruising speed so there was a breeze.

At Jalan Ampang, it was back into a slow crawling jam again. I finally made it to the shop. It was in Pekan Ampang... a really old part of KL. Some of the shops are pre-WW2 shops. One of the shop had the year on it, 1917 (can't remember the exact date now). This isn't the first time I when to the shop actually. The first time I when there, the guy was closed, so I had to make a second trip.

While I was making small talk with the owner, Vincent, he told me actually I could have just picked it up from his dealer in SS2. Damn! Now he tells me! I was standing outside his shop contemplating whether I should drive back through the jam again or find somewhere to have lunch in the area. I decided the jam isn't going to get any better plus it looked like it was going rain. I didn't want to get stuck in one of those infamous KL floods.

Finally made my way back to KL by 2PM. I turned into Jaya supermarket to have lunch. The place was packed with cars so I turned into the houses in the back to find parking instead. I brought my umbrella along and started walking to Jaya. If I drive alone, I don't mind parking further away. If I'm with other people, they always complain about how far away I park from the elevator or the escalator. Me, I'm just glad I found parking.

I had lunch at the Jaya Noodle shop. They're moving in February next year. They say they're going to tear down Jaya to rebuild the whole area. Kind of sad... I've been going to Jaya my whole life. I still remember when it was just a single storey supermarket and they had outdoor parking. When I was in secondary school, I used to hang out there almost everyday after school.

I browsed a DVD shop and bought Flashpoint, a Donnie Yen movie. I also got Grindhouse and Rogue Assassin. Grindhouse is dual feature movie directed by Robert Rodriguez. The other movie in the dual feature is Death Proof directed by Quentin Tarrantino. I watched Death Proof. It's got some long draggy dialogs but some awsome car chase scenes in the ending. I think you can only do a good movie once and anything after that is in bad taste. Quentin made some really kick ass movies like Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill and From Dusk Till Dawn. However, after watching Death Proof... it's just not the same as Reservoir Dogs or Pulp Fiction. Yeah, it's got some cool dialogs but it's way over done. I loved Pulp Fiction for it's scripting and dialog. It's got some of the most memorable dialogs in a movie.

Anyway, I finally got home and I watched Flashpoint. Man, all I got to say after watching the movie is Awsome! Donnie Yen rocks! The fight choreography in the movie is really good... probably better than his SPL. I like the judo moves he does in the movie. This guy beats Jet Li any day man. Jet Li always fight with the same style, however, Donnie Yen is willing to use new fight styles in his choreography. For Flashpoint, there was a lot of Judo influence which was really cool. I wish Donnie Yen the best in his career.

Hrm... I think I'm going to play a bit of my Medieval Total War 2. I just made it into the age where I discovered The New World. I'm playing the Spanish now. Sailed all the way to central America and set up a colony. I tried trading with the Aztec empire but then I realized this guys don't even have a port! Haha... what a backward race. I thought I'll be all nice and friendly instead of invading them, I'll be chummy with them and be their allies. I gave them 100,000 florins just to be their friend and to trade with them. Now I discover they can't trade... they don't even have a market!

Damn... I guess I'll just have to conquer their lands.

Friday, October 05, 2007

It's late. I should be in bed. I didn't sleep last night, stayed up the whole night just to finish editing episode 11. Finished at 11AM. I took a short nap and drove to the office at 3PM. When I got there, I started making calls in preparation for my first WHI show after a few months. Man, I felt so wierd... like trying to learn how to ride a bike again.

When I got to the AVID room and tried to transfer to tape what I edited, I discovered that my material wasn't in my portable hard disk. I had saved it into my local disk at home instead! Man, that sucks. Now I have to wake up early tomorrow morning and transfer it before I do voice-over tomorrow with Mano.

Today, I bought flowers for Chui Yan again. This was the second time I was buying flowers from the same florist in Aman Suria. Small little shop. They had rows and rows of Raya hampers.

While they were preparing my roses, I made small talk with them. I asked them what was their most expensive Raya hamper. They said it was RM540. I asked what goes in a RM540 hamper? She said it's not easy to find expensive stuff for a Raya hamper compared to a Chinese New Year hamper. Malays don't drink alcohol so they put a lot of expensive raya cookies and chocolates in it. I asked her if she put in any canned abolone then. She laughed and said no... she didn't think it was halal. haha. Well, just to be clear, abolone should be halal except I don't know about the preservatives that go into the can.

I like making small talk with strangers occasionally. Especially when I'm on the job. I get to learn a lot of things. Sometimes people I meet for the first time find it unnerving that I ask so many questions. The way I see it, better me asking the questions than them.

Like the other day I was on a shoot in UPM. I ended up at a server farm in the middle of no where. Since my cameraman was on auto mode I started talking to the manager there. I asked him what type of people work here. He says he doesn't hire many UPM students even though they are based right in UPM. The going salary for a degree student with 1 year experience is about RM3K. Damn, that's almost as much as I make.

The manager was complaining about the quality of graduates today. I asked him what was the dumbest grad he interviewed. He said he interviewed this guy who used to work with Streamyx and asked him how to install Streamyx. He when on to explain how to do it with the Streamyx installation CD and all... when the manager asked him how to install without the CD the graduate replied "without the CD, you can't install Streamyx... positive!". I bursted out laughing when the manager told me the story.

Sometimes making small talk with people helps you learn new things you never knew. In my job, it really helps in getting the inside story. Although at times I hate making small talk as I just want to be alone.

For example, when I'm in the office cafeteria and if I have a newspaper in my hand, I don't want to sit with anyone else nor will I allow anyone else to sit down with me. All I want to do is read the papers. I need to know what is going on in the world.

Anyway, while I was at the server farm, I saw this hanging from a car parked there.

See it? Look below the license plate.

Poor Patrick hanging from the bottom of a kancil bumper. Driving through the rain... mud, heat, etc. Makes me wonder if this is a chick's car or a guy's car.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

I'm procrastinating again. Should be editing the show but sometimes it's just so hard to get something started you know?

Anyway, I looked up my recently downloaded photos from my camera and I found these. It's Sim, See Ming and their baby Max.

Sim, See Ming and Max

The boy looks like he's riding a bike.


Queen - Bicycle Race

Bicycle bicycle bicycle
I want to ride my bicycle bicycle bicycle
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride my bike
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride it where I like

You say black I say white
You say bark I say bite
You say shark I say hey man
Jaws was never my scene
And I don't like Star Wars
You say Rolls I say Royce
You say God give me a choice
You say Lord I say Christ
I don't believe in Peter Pan
Frankenstein or Superman
All I wanna do is

Bicycle bicycle bicycle
I want to ride my bicycle bicycle bicycle
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride my bike
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride my
Bicycle races are coming your way
So forget all your duties oh yeah
Fat bottomed girls they'll be riding today
So look out for those beauties oh yeah
On your marks get set go
Bicycle race bicycle race bicycle race

Bicycle bicycle bicycle I want to ride my bicycle
Bicycle bicycle bicycle bicycle
Bicycle race

You say coke I say caine
You say John I say Wayne
Hot dog I say cool it man
I don't wanna be the President of America
You say smile I say cheese
Cartier I say please
Income tax I say Jesus
I don't wanna be a candidate for
Vietnam or Watergate
Cause all I wanna do is

Bicycle bicycle bicycle
I want to ride my bicycle bicycle bicycle
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride my bike
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride it where I like

ok, I really should get down to cutting some videos!