Thursday, December 29, 2005

Phi Phi

SO here I am on Phi Phi, trying to look like I know what I'm doing. There is a lot of info to absorb. Already I have done 2 courses - rescue and emergency response. Damn, there's a lot to get into my head.

Yesterday I ate chicken feet for the first time...not bad. Don't ask how that happened. They were actually quite good. Check out TransportCaff for a recipe of sorts.

Anotehr thing. This keyboard has Thai writing on it, which makes me long for the Das Keyboard.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

A-41 (collected)

Episode 2 of the Visa saga saw me returning to the Royal Thai Consulate to collect my passport, which now contained the royal chop. That only took 2 minutes.

But that's not what I wanted to talk about.

What I do want to yammer on about is the amount of space the visas end up taking in one's passport. You can get 10 or so chops on a page under normal circumstances, but a visa requires an entire leaf unto itself. What a waste. I'd like my microchip now please. Just embed the thing in pip and let me get on with it.

Das Fingentypenconfusen

The mind boggles. Here's a keyboard that doesn't have any letter on it. The inventors claim that it turns you into a superduper fast typist because you don't have to think about the letters.

Check out the Das website here.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Number A-41

If you ever want to remind yourself of your place in the universe, all you have to is wait in one of those diabolical queueing systems for your number to come up.

There were 20 people in front of me at the Royal Thai Consulate this morning, and I waited over 2 hours before I could hand ion my Visa application. When my turn finally came, my request was processed in under 3 minutes. Sign. Pay. Hand over photograph. Receipt. Chop. Thank you. Which makes me wonder what the people who seem to be engaged in discussion for half an hour at a time are up to. Endless discussions, rifling through papers, dropping things, rooting in bags, pressing of ears against the bullet proof glass to hear properly.

In certain circles we talk about those who are constitutionally incapable. I give you the Visa queue as proof.

And speaking of embassies and consulates; it's inetresting that you can literally walk into the grounds of most of the sovereign buildings - say hello to the guard, state your business and proceed. Not so the American Consulate. At leat 2 layers of fencing, dogs, armed guards, armoured cars. Whatever happened to "bring me your weak, your downtrodden, etc?" Not sure who's foot the down trodding boot is on these days.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

There's a lizard living in my motorcycle

I kid you not. This morning as I was thundering along, I espeyed a small lizard clinging to the fairing of my bike. At first I thought a piece of grass had become lodged there, but on closer inpection it was indeed a lizard.

The poor bugger was clinging on for dear life in the 80km/h headwinds. As I stopped at a traffic light, he found better footing below the rim of the fairing, and then managed to creep into the gap betwen the dials and the front of the fairing. I slowed down by then to give him a more comfortable ride.

I hope he's still there. One more reason not to wash the machine.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Open sauce

Frankly I couldn't give 2 shits about the browser wars. Back in the day I used Netscape 3 - simply becasue IE 3 was dodgy. But from IE 4 onwards, Bill's browser was better. What I dug most about the good ol' days was that there were a zillion little useless apps that you could plug in.

Firefox has returned us to those heady days. My browser now sports the ability to have coloured tabs, close buttons on each tab, an image and text zoom function, an IP address capturer, a colour picker, FTP client (not just file view like IE), an RSS reader...infact endless numbers of really groovy meaningless functionality.

Now all I need is a broadband service provider with an actual working line and a willingness to respond to problems in les than 6 weeks.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Sony Baloney

Well, it seems that music distributor SonyBMG has included malware on several CDs that installs itself into the root of your computer for the express purposes of disallowing the copying of aforementioned CDs.

Naughty, naughty, naughty. Already the state of Texas has brung themselves a lawsuit on Sony. And it seems that lawyers elsewhere in the US of A are considering whether the case has enought merit to merit a class action suit.

Me, I hope the backlash causes more than juts a little embarrassment. This blog has featured various posts dealing quite superficially with the idea of copyright and intellectual property.

For thos interested enough to see a list of the 50 CDs that actually contain the malware, it can be found here.

On scrutiny, however, there's very little I'd listen to anyway.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005


A new and pernicious form of blogger is emerging in the blogospere; a spam tout who couches his / her evil message in complimentary tones, but who is quite clearly on the hunt for extra click throughs to his / her site.

Again, I invite the hackers of the world to unite and bring down these miserable bastards with large Denial Of Service apps.

See the comment on the post below to see what I'm on about.

Monday, October 24, 2005


I can't think what else to title this post other than "Singapore."

Every time a visit Singapore, I tell myself that that's where I want to end up; for a while anyway. It feels so familiar. All the things that I really like, but can't find here in Malaysia are to be had in Singapore in buckets - right down to the finest Pizza I've had in years.

Even the airport is something else. With about 45 minutes to spare before the flight took off, I discovered that the waiting area has an outside area, complete with sunflowers (all kept at regulation height by gangs of gardeners), and even a small cinema. I couldn't believe what I was seeing.

So here it is, for the record, and just so the message travels into the universe and becomes true. I am going to work in Singapore.

As I was writing this post I came across the following article in the Mail & Guardian website.

Click here for the article

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Asterix and the great Firewall of China

And the plane landed safely.

The first thing I saw this morning when I turned on the TV during my morning ritual of espresso was the image of an aeroplane bouncing around my screen under the high magnification of a telephoto lens. "This aughta be good," I thought, "obviously some fundamentalist group of exploding-shoe wearing maniacs have threatened to do a Kruschev."

Sadly this wasn't the case. Turns out the Airbus A320 merely had a skew nose wheel.

CNN obviously shared my bloodlust however, because to hear them tell it, it was a disaster of humanity-threatening proportions. They had rounded up the usual crew of experts from fire chiefs to ageing stewardesses who survived the Hindenburg disaster. None of them was playing ball, however. Whenever Larry King would refer to the disasterously dangerous attitude of the undercarriage, the panel pilot would correct him - "It's a little cockeyed, Larry."

Anyway, despite the media's attempt to will the thing to a fiery end, the plane landed as smoothely as if all systems were go. No mess, no fuss.

Still, it made the morning coffee more interesting than usual.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Free at last (well, almost)

It is with a not undue sense of relief that I write this report today.

This a.m. I sat for the written part of my motorcycle license here in Malaysia. It's been almost 3 months since I paid my money and joined the seemingly interminable bureacratic queue. The real issue, of course, was that my residential address and my business address differed. How silly of me.

I thought that I would have to resort to the official method of getting things done hereabouts, which is ask the question, "who do we have to pay, and how much?"

8 weeks of to-and-froing with the transport department, and a pile of paperwork larger than a mighty redwood, and the I can finally move on to episode 2 of this saga. I'll keep the universe posted as things develop.

Monday, August 15, 2005

My blog has been spammed

I'm not sure how to feel about what just happened. Someone called meghanhc59jfdenton has posted a spam comment on my blog. Of course, this miserable fuck's name leads nowhere, so I can't even reply in kind.

If there are any hackers reading this, please find the organisation in question and mailbomb it.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

This wasn't in the brochure

For the 4th day in a row now KL is blanketed under a layer of smoke so thick I can barely see across the road. Visibility is down to under 100m in some places. Schools have closed. The fish are going belly-up in the fish farms for lack of oxygen. Hell, the air even smells like a good old fashioned highveld grassfire.

In typical fashion the authorities are telling us as little as possible. What we do know is that the API (air pollutant index) has reached "dangerously unhealthy levels." We also know that the smoke is the result of open burning which the Malaysian government routinely blames on Indonesia.

The hysteria is reaching a fever pitch; there are calls for the government to seed the clouds in the hope of creating rain to wash the sky. The only solution is for all of us to look west and blow as hard as we can.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

And speaking of stealing ideas...

Here's one of this year's Cannes winners from Jupiter Drawing Room in South Africa.

And here's an ad I came across from Lurzer' Archive, Vol.3-2002. Hmmmmmmmm...

Sum of yesterday

Some stuff lasts and some doesn't. I've been going through the annuals trying to find an idea to steal and something struck me. No matter how technology infulences this profession, a good idea is timeless. It doesn't fade. It doesn't crack. It doesn't go out of fashion. It's never the wrong colour for the season. Not even Greenpeace can find something wrong with a good idea. It's never superceded by a new model. etc...

And why am I musing thus? Well, I came across an ad for an airline, in which the lastest turboprop engine was being hailed as the latest greatest thing since...well, flight. And it seemed intresting that while the turboprop engine has been overtaken by technology, the idea expressed in the ad remains worthy of a look.

Nuff said.

Monday, July 25, 2005

TIME Magazine logo now in the public domain?

When I first saw the cover of the Time magazine shown here, I was amused by ironic symbolism of the Chairman sporting the Louis Vuitton logo. For me it neatly summed up my rather naive understanding of China Today. However I think that I viewed it somewhat differently to how it was meant; Time Magazine, I'm sure, wanted to draw attention to the bourgeoning spending power of the rising borgeouise class in China; I saw it as yet another example of the Asian abilility to embrace everybody else's valuable symbols as their own. There was, however, a third point of view that I had not anticipated.

Friday, June 24, 2005


I've long been a fan of Zapiro's political cartoons in the Mail And Guardian newspaper. Every now and then, though, there's one that is just so insightful and African, that it deserves a shouting gallery.

Here is one such.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

The China Syndrome

I'm sitting at a recording studio somewhere in the Far East thinking about China's latest attack on freedom. They're clamping down on ISPs, requiring anybody who has anything to do with the Internet to register with the state. Companies running blog sites (such as MSN's "Spaces") are now required to filter out words such as "freedom" and "democracy." Those not willing to play ball will have to host their offerings outside of China's borders; anyone inside China will no longer be able to access these sites.

The fifth estate is under attack.

This reminds me of the bad old days in South Africa when the government under PW Botha became so paranoid about the fourth estate (the press) that they established a commission of enquiry to investigate, and ultimately stamp out, press freedom.

Thank god they lost thaht battle.

More on this later.

Friday, June 10, 2005

June has gone pear shaped

It's been an odd month so far (and it's only the tenth). For my own part I feel like I'm fighting the world. Things move too slowly, or they don't work, or something else just simply goes awry.

Two of my colleagues have had to go to hospital for various ailments. My cats are misbehaving to such an extent that they risk being turned into broth. China is flooding. What the hell is going on.

Maybe pluto is in retrograde, or something. Or venus is in uranus. Whatever it is, sense a great disturbance in the force. Am I the only one?

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Ok, so they lied

A short while ago I posted a piece entitled "trust. but verify." In it I suggested that the proposed pullout of Syrian troops from Lebabnon was too good to be true (actually, I asked if a man's bond was no longer his word).

It seems that the aforsaid Syrians have in fact NOT gone, despite having promised to do so.

Will the middle east never wake up and smell the democracy? Even as the Bush wife toured Palestine and isreal, she was heckled and berated. Asked if she had been concerned for her safety she replied no.

I guess the rest of the world has come to expect bad behaviour from these people.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Blame the media, why don'tcha

According to some or other Pentagon / US Gov official, the newsweek article mentioned previously is responsible for bringing down the reputation of the US in the Middle east region.

Hmmm. I'm glad that's been cleared up. I thought it may have had something to do with the war. Or the endless bombing and doublespeak. And ill-treatment of POWs. An lies and propaganda.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

The pages of the holy books: soft, strong and thoroughly absorbent

Is there no end to the wailing, gnashing of teeth and rending of clothing?

The question refers, of course, to the Newsweek report alleging that the Quran was flushed. In my humble opinion the whole thing has been blown out of proportion. There will always be those who are just spoiling for a fight and for whom the slightest excuse is good enough.

My suggestion is that all the holy books should be printed on double-ply paper and come with gummed edges for rolling up a big splif.

Friday, May 13, 2005


Fear of friday the 13th.

The unluckiest thing here is that the word for "fear of Friday the 13th" has 4 more syllables than the sentence itself.

Now is that sensible?

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Trust. But verify

Ya gotta love the intelligence establishment. As the Syrians rolled out of Lebanon with the promise to nosepoke no longer, and to take their apparatus of espionage with them, Lebanese officials were were being advised to believe that they would do just that. with the caveat - just check and make sure they don't double back or leave exploding cellphones.

Is a man's word no longer his bond? Guess not.

Frankly the whole things seems to have bee a little easy to me.

Lebs: "I say, please leave."
Syrs: "okeleedokellee. Just give us a chance to have a last wee before we get into our tanks."
Lebs: "There's some cake left over. Wanna take a doggy bag?"

And then they stand chatting for half an hour at the border post before finally realising they're going to miss American Idol on TV. And then they bugger off.

I predict mischief, mayhem and soap in the next couple of months.

Friday, April 22, 2005

Now all we need is Bill Gates' email address and we're sorted

xin zhong

Look at this window; it is nothing but a hole in the wall,

but because of it the whole room is full of light.

So when the faculties are empty, the heart is full of light.

Being full of light it becomes an influence

by which others are secretly transformed...

The Tao gathers in emptiness alone.

Emptiness is the fasting of the heart

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Prophet Muhammad's Birthday

Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday dear Muhammad, happy birthday to you.

Heh, heh. That should put the wind up George W and his buddies.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Eggs Benedict XVI

No surprises this time round. Our man in V-Town (the good cardinal Rat Josephsfinger) had even been given odds of 7-2 by the bookies. Is there a papal tote?

What it means of course, is that the Catholic Church remains firmly mired in its own backward bullshit. And by this I mean that the interpretation of the "Word of God" is unlikely to change in the near future. Our only saving grace (pun intended) is that he's old, and thus will no doubt be on his merry way before too long.

Digressing slightly...I'm conversing with a friend via IMS as I write this piece, and she raises an interesting thought: How do the jews feel about the fact that the new pope is a German?

Now there's wafer for thought.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

An African Pope?

Ha! Lets get real. The Catholic establishment doesn't even pretend to be liberal, let alone pay the kind of lip service that many other institutions do, while remaining ultimately conservative.

Nosireebob. This is a church that has so far refused to acknowledge the fact that we are living in the 3rd millennium; even the initiation of female priests causes the Cardinals to shake at their gartered and frocked knees.

More on this as I become more opinionated.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

This is just weird

I was reading Krisjan Lemmer in the online version of The mail & Guardian when I came across this article:

Lemmer is the first to admit that he’s a sucker for urban legends about subliminal images hidden in logos. So Oom can understand why the Zimbabwean secret police would be taking a look at the new logo of the Zimbabwean Cricket Union, as was reported this week. The manne were divided as to whether or not it spells “MDC”: the C is back to front and the chicken head confuses the issue, but when you’re sniffing out subliminal propaganda, you can’t be too careful.

Monday, April 04, 2005

And the choir played on

Well, the old bugger finally popped his clogs. It's been mighty interesting to get the usual slew of "useful" information via the media re the death of the pope.

As revolutionary as he was, and as beloved to all as he was, I feel that he fell short in several important areas; his stance on things like AIDS, contraception, same sex marriages and women in the clergy were old fashioned at best. Some have even said that he was stuck somewhere between the 13th and the 15th centuries. I agree.

I wonder if the next guy will manage to drag the Catholic Church kicking and screaming into the 16th Century.

Friday, April 01, 2005

Corrupt News Network (CNN)

It's been a great years for the media. First we waved (pun intended) goodbye to half of Sumatra. Even the war in Iraq had to be put on the bck burner for a while, while this happened. The the Schiavo case leapt into the public eye. Now the pope seems to be heading towards the light.

No wonder we have things like the Olympic Games and World Cups and tennis matches. If it weren't for these rallying points, it would all be murder and mayhem.

But back to the pope. He's been shot at and wounded. Had pipes stuck in him. You name it. And yet he's till with us. This reminds me of something I once heard about the so-called holy men - god obviously doesn't want them either.

The raspberry is dead. Long live the raspberry

So Terry Shiavo finally died, 13 days after the machines that go ping had pung their last.

When I first heard that big W had flown from his ranch for the express purpose of enacting a bill that would allow Terry's parents to fight yet another round in the battle for her life, I certainly didn't expect the story to get so big.

As the thing unfolded I found it hard to know which side to take.

In the blue corner; the husband - probably doing the right thing. Terry had been a veggie for 15 years, over which time her brain had literally dissolved away to almost nothing.

In the red corner; the parents, egegd on by the usual ill-informed, screaming pressure groups that seem to make up "polite" society these days. They couldn't even get a decent banner together.

But enough of that.

The thing I really wanted to talk about: Once she had kicked off her mortal coil, we saw Terry in various videos that had been shot at various times during the last year or so. IN these videos, one almost got the impression that she did have moments of understanding. Quite sad really.

So maybe the god-botherers had a point. But what these idiots always fail to do, is see anyone else's point of view. What if she was concious at times? And what if she hated being a veggie? I certainly wouldn't want to live like that.

What if her apparent attempts to communicate had been to say "end it now?"

The trouble with people who think they have all the answers is that they never leave room for questions.

Perhaps they should read more John Donne.

And finally, it's ironic that in death she's probably made more of a mark then she ever would have in life.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Of mice and removal men

It's D-Day -1 for the big office move. The soon to be ex-office is a shambles. A zillion boxes clutter what used to be a relatively comfortable and neat working area. The kitchen has been completely dismantled; hence no coffee. And I am informed that my desk has been sold and must move my computer temporarily to another one. I duly take my computer apart and pick my way through the maze. A empty table appears as I crest the rise of a stable pile of boxes. Quickly I make my way forward, fearing that other displaced workers are also beating a path for this same table. As I begin to set up shop I'm informed that this table has also been sold (I knew a clean table was too good to be true). So "how?" as we say here.

The office manager helps me by moving a cutting mat, scanner and 17 rolls of masking tape and thereby clearing enough space or my computer, screen, waterbottle, layout pad and stickers which will later be used to label my compter and single box of worldy goods.

Bonus, the computer that used to occupy this desk has an optical mouse. Seeing as the person who used to work at this particlular workstation has long since resigned, the mouse is now mine. Groovy. Score one for Stuart.

Monday, March 28, 2005

Malaysian F1 GP

Damn, the sound is something else. I had forgotten just how ferociously loud these fire breathing super-souped, V10, 3,5 litre, 1100bhp engines actually were. Luckily I never go racing without earplugs.

As I walked into the circuit from the car park, I could hear, but not see, the cars. Gordon bennet, it was groovy. HAd goose pimples for 5 minutes.

Then, to my delight I found that I had a seat opposite the pits, so at least I got to see some action, instead of the usual thing of very fast one-way tennis.

The acceleration as the cars come out of the pits is unbelievable (for the uninitiated, there is a speed limit in the pits - to make sure that the drivers' grandmothers don't get knocked over while crossing the road).

From my point of view the interesting thing about the 2005 season is the fact that Ralf Shumacher is now with Toyota. I predicted last year that a Schumie Brother would be behind the wheel of a Toyota within the next 4 or 5 season; I just expected it to be Michael.

Of course, the fact that Toyota is picking up points in only its 3rd season out is also interesting, but not unexpected.

Renault's dominance early on is a welcome change from recent seasons- but again, not completely strange. One will recall in the good old days that Renault was a force to be reckoned with during the 80s, being driven by Alain "The Professor" Prost.

Speaking of Renaults, I have to throw in a piece of useless info:

Jody Scheckter, 1979 world champ (in a Ferrari) worked as an apprentice mechanic at his father's Renault delaership in East London (SA) before becoming a racer.
Anyway. A fun day was had by all.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Thursday, March 17, 2005


Yesterday evening, as I was attempting to get a taxi, a car caught fire. Amazing. White smoke began to pour from the car, followed by the driver and his passenger. Very soon, the white smoke had become black smoke, and flames could be seen. Next thing there was a wooshing sound and fire emitted from under the car in long streaks.

It was at this juncture that I decided to move away from the car lest it explode. It didn't, of course (bummer).

The plastic mouldings on the side of the car started to drip onto the road, and of course, a little river of petrol (or something) had begun to run downhill under the car.

One feels a horrible fascination with these things; I didn't want to get blown up, and yet I couldn't move away either. And then a taxi pulled up. Oh well. Pity I didn't have my camera.

Friday, March 11, 2005

More on Million Dollar Baby

What's it really about?

Critics slated the film, saying that it misrepresented itself (being not about boxing, but rather about the right to life). In the build up to the Oscars, the puritanical establishment that passes for public opinion in the US whinged on and on about whether the film's content was suitable for public consumption.

Watching Million Dollar Baby, one is struck by how skillful Clint Eastwood is at giving a healthy dose of pathos without descending into sentimentality. Perhaps that's why there was such an outcry from pressure groups (read: idiots)within America regarding the film's treatment of the euthanasia issue.

The film does contain food for thought, and if you want to make a meal of the assisted suicide thing then that's up to you. What the whigers miss is a whole host of other stuff that makes Million Dollar Baby great. Sucj as cinematographic techniques, filmatic timing, great editing, realistic interaction between the characters...I could go on and on.

I think that my point is this: The aforementioned whingers are not used to having to make up their own minds about issues (they are used to the media making it up for them). So when a picture like this comes along and simply presents a storyline without suggesting how you feel about it they (the whingers) get confused.

Pity we cannot pull the plug on them and put them out of OUR misery.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Go ahead Oscar, make my day

I began to think about what I would say about Clint Eastwood a few days before the Oscars. This was primarily due to the amount of airtime the Awards were getting. Programmes, documentaries, interviews, predictions, trailers, looks behind the scenes, publicity stunts and philosophical debates rages on into the night. One was spoilt for choice.

Anyway, as the whole world knew and has probably already forgotten - as they move on to more important TV viewing - the race for this year's ultimate prize was between Leo's (and Scorsese's) The Aviator and Clint's Million Dollar Baby.

The pundits, ever politically correct, predicted pacification of the billion dollar egos involved in the form of an equitable doling out of Oscar; Best Director to Clint and Best Film to Scorsese (or the other way around).


Clint's movie won 4 Oscars (Best Supporting for Morgan Freeman - about time actually, Best Actress - for Hillary swank, Best Film and Best Director). Now I've always been a fan of Clint's measured style of direction. His pacing and timing are superb in my opinion. He's not as much and auteur as, say Wim Wenders, but he has a sense of style that probably comes from 60 years of exposure to the industry. His move A Perfect World, starring himself and Kevin Costner is on of the best pieces ever, in my opinion.

And so, it was about time that he got the recognition he was due. In fact I seem to recall somewhere in the archived sections of my brain that he was given a lifetime achievement award at some stage.

Viva Clint.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Monday, February 21, 2005

Haflway between Barstow and the desert

Hunter S Thompson apparently killed himself some time today or yesterday. You can read the official report by clicking on:

I always wanted to write like HST. The idea that the journalist, or writer of the news could be more important than the very news he was reporting on struck me as a groovy thing. Of course, the case of Hunter S Thompson's case he invariably WAS the news. His antics usually eclipsed the event he was writing about, and the articles became sort of surreal autobiographical review of what was going on at the time. One almost got the impression that the events wouldn't actually even have been newsworthy were it not for his participation in them.

This is the essence of the so-called Gonzo Journalism - a term I think Tom Wolfe coined; alhtough I satnd to be corrected.

My favourite was always, and I suppoose will always be, Fear and Loathing in Las vegas (although I have read others). Who can restis a book that starts, "We were halway between Barstow and the desert when the drugs took hold."

So long Hunter. See you there...

Finally, here's one from ralph Steadman.

Friday, February 18, 2005

I eat sharks

Had shark fin soup again for lunch today. I know, I know. But the fuckers eat us at the slightest opportunity, don't they. Greenpeace, if you're reading this, it was like that when I got there - promise.

Anyway, I thought I'd do some research in the mysteries of this culinary delight - you never know what shit you'll dig on the web (this blog for example).

So here's a recipe taken from a website called Utopian Online: for those curious souls who would like to view the pictures.


300g Shark’s fin (lucky number 888, heh heh)
50 g mushroom - soaked in hot water
20 g dried scallop (Ithink this is becasue shark fins are very expensive and one fills it out with otehr stuff - I've even heard of crab meat being used)
300 g chicken breast
20 diced ham
1500g chicken broth (don't know what that is in ml)

30g ginger
30g green onions (failing which, throw in your old Booker T and the MGs records)
cooking wine (personally I recommend an expensive bottle, but that's just me)
ginger wine (mince ginger and soak in wine)
white pepper

Now light a fire under it:

1. Put dried scallop, ham, one slice of ginger, one green onion in a container with 250 grams of water. Steam contents for one hour. Drain fluid in a bowl.

2. Cook shark’s fin in water until soft and drain. Cook shark’s fin in 1000 grams of broth and ginger wine. Drain broth.

3. Cut chicken breast into pieces and broil in boiling water. Drain water and wash chicken breast under cold water.

4. Heat up wok and add about three tablespoonful of oil. Add chicken breast, ginger, green onion, ginger wine and stir-fry. Add broth from 2) and cook until chicken breast is done. Drain.

5. Arrange chicken, ham, scallop, mushroom and shark’s fin in a container. Add fluid from 1), cooking wine, ginger, green onion, and pepper powder. Cover container with a lid and steam for 2 hours and serve.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

McStuff McLinks

For more on the McLibel case follow these links (I don't know how long they will be valid, but they are part of BBC's news archive, so, maybe forever):

Wednesday, February 16, 2005


I seem to have a lot on my mind today; thereare a few things that I feel need mentioning:

The first thing is the McLibal suit which has been languishing in English and Eurpoean courts for the past 10 years. I remember Mikki once saying to me that she thought McDonalds food should come with a health warniung. I wasn't so sure then, and I'm not so sure now. However, the anti-McD s sentiment does seem to have some merit. Just take at a gander at the doccie entitled "Supesize me," in which a brave (stupid) guy eats only McFood for a month. Apperantly his liver and other organs began to shut down, his skin broke out and his doctor told him he only had 17 lunchtimes left to live.

(more on this when I can find the detail)

Second, the syrian occupation of Lebanon feels to me much like the South African Government's occupation of places like SWA (Namibia) and Angola back in the day. It had and has nothing to do with the internal stability of the occupied country. The real point is that all evil governments need a springboard from which to launch their nafarious deeds. And so much the betetr if it is outsie the normal politico-geographical area of the occupier.

We all had them...

Sentosa Island

Sentosa is an Island the size of a small car, about 3 minutes south of Singapore. It is essentially a tourist resort with white beaches (imported from Thailand), Corona (imported from Mexico) and plam trees (imported from fuck knows where).

Check it out :: Sentosa
[Achtung! image is 83k]

Interestingly, I didn't see any monkey harrassing the touristicos. Must be because the Singapore government has shot them all and sold them to restrateurs in Chinatown. Or possibly because they have not issued the monkeys with the papers needed to appear in public.

$$$$ingapore Slingshot

Let it be said that I liked Singapore. Perhaps it has something to do with my own control-freak nature, but I see something beautiful in a police state where even the plants are fined if they grow outside the lines.

It is as clean as you hear about in the stories. But everything works. The subway, for example comes and goes as smoothely a very smooth coming and going thing. And the poeple seem to be far more orderly than in Malayasia (if less friendly). There are rules for the escalators, for exmaple (like in London); standing on the left, walking on the right. The lines on the road are things that serve agreater purpose than simply looking pretty and making groovy patterns as you weave in and out of them (like in Malaysia).

The only thing that I didn't like was the expense. It is roughly 4 times as expensive as KL - doing the math as follows: Sing dollar = 2 Ringgit. Then on top of that stuff is roughly twice the price in nominal terms.

Also, there is a sort of subversive "friendly" propoganda engine being held at full throttle by the SingGov. For example, everytime there are road works, the thank you for playing nice message is accompanied by a smiley face. That's just weird, man.

Anyway, here are a few of the things that you would expect to see on a tube train.

Lastly, I have found that this blog interface doesn't like tables much. So I have had to create one image for the above picture instead of putting them separately into three table cells. Go figure.