Saturday, December 30, 2006

Saddam is dead. Long live Saddam.

I didn't really know how I felt about America's intervention in Iraq until now. I've always said that I'd rather have the pax Americana than the alternative, and I stand by that.


It sucks, actually.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Me? Time person of the year?

What bollocks. What shameless overeditorialising. What rediculocity. Time Magazine has clearly gone pearshaped. It's named me / you / anyone who looks at the latest cover (there's a foiled, mirror type, reflective panel), including my cats, person of the year.

Here are a couple of cycnical interpretations:

(1) It adds 23 extra pages to the edition in question
(2) More space = more advertising revenue (see number 1 above)
(3) Samsung placed a really boring, really big - and no doubt expensive - pull-out in this edition (see number 2 above)
(4) The editorial team have gone soft
(5) The managing editor's son came up with the idea
(6) They wanteed to test their new foil printing machine
(7) They're scared of stirring up controversy
(8) They really think it's a clever idea
(9) What-ever

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Dear Father Christmas

What I really want for Christmas is a day off from work.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


I'm sitting at a coffee shop calling itself Friendster. The place first came to my attention due to the fact that their logo resembled that of Starbucks. In fact I thought it was a Starbucks at first.

Anyway, I've only now taken a picture of their logo, which I see they have now changed. It used to be green, exactly like Starbuck's. Shameless.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Malaysia by bike ep.#1

The first thing I noticed when planning my ride to Malacca/Melaka/Malaka was that there doesn't seem to be any consistent spelling of the name.

That being said, there are consistencies between the city named M and many other of its South East Asian counterparts. Congested , dirty, sprawling, poluted, disorganised, and without a single pair of synchronised trafffic lights.

The food, however, is well worth the trip (except for the Portuguese Settlement, but more on that in a bit). The cuisine is Nyonya/Baba, which I believe is a culture that arose out of the intermarriage between Malay aboriginals and Chinese settlers back in the day. The food is a bit like the matrix - you have to experience it to understand, but I can say that it's a little bit tart, a little bit sweet, a little bit chilli-ish, a little bit country and a little bit rock and roll.

Anyway, lunch was indubitably the highlight of the trip. And so, having partaken of the provender for which the region is famous, I decided in my wisdom to check out the other cooking style for which I assumed it would be equally renowned; Portuguese.

Ha. One taxi ride through seventeen smelly neighbourhoods later we were duly deposited at the so-called Portuguese Settlement. In a word, it's dying. The food was decidedly unportuguese. Where were the hearty stews, firey chicken, chouricos, peri-peri squid, fried eggs and chips I find myself craving. Nowhere to be seen is the answer. What we did find, though, was the dodgiest bar in all of Negiri Sembilan, a couple of piss-cats playing pool. I seem to gravitate to these places.

On a creative note, the area in which we boarded - ChinaTown - is one big photo-op. I've included one image here, but if you're curious, please check out my Flickr space, where I will try to post a few of the more intresting pics in due course. Link in the side bar.

Sunday, October 22, 2006


If we had more fingers, would pianos have more keys?

Friday, September 08, 2006

I've seen the future of air travel and I'm afraid

Low cost carriers are not new. But the thrend toward "no frills" is being taken to ever more horrible lows. The newest addition to this kind of travel is known as the Low Cost Carrier Terminal.

My god.

The purpose of these things - the experts tell us - is to move passengers through, up, down, around, in, out faster than is possible in the enormous terminal buildings national flag carriers are so fond of.


I fart in their general direction. The logistics low rent. They seem to have a policy of hiring "special" people, or those severly challenged in the grey matter department. The acoustics sound like a a burp in a bucket.

The whole thing is just too 'orrible for words.

Oh, and the planes, of course, don't berth at the building - you have to walk along the tarmac; which in the case of AirAsia means as soon as it rains no-one wants to walk to the plane; which means the flight is delayed.

I despair.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Sights, sounds and smells

One of the groovier things about riding a motorcycle is that as one passes, one experiences first hand the natural efluviance of the environment. The smell of flowers, freshly cut grass, curries slowly simemring in giant copper pots. It's luvly.

And then you get behind a garbage truck.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

The agony of choice

Two firsts have just occured: I've managed to use the phrase "the agoney of choice" in a sentence; and I now have to choose between watching the rugga (Springboks v Wallabies) on the telly and the kaioshung leg of the San Miguel Asion 9-ball tournament. The latter is the result of having satellite - I've never had the luxury before. Oh for a simpler better time when all we had to amuse ourselves was state sponsored propaganda. Perhaps I'll find solace in the fact that the commentary is equally as bad in either case. I don'nt mean the rugby. I mean the pool.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Saturday, July 08, 2006

I see taxis in my future

The groovy thing about riding a motorcycle is that you're constantly in a tug-of-war with Newton. Steering the thing requires overcoming intertia; just staying upright is a mystery. I sort of understand how a gyroscope works, but all these things remain a beyond the scope of my full understanding.

And so it was only a matter of time before a deceptively flat patch of road got the better of me.

Gravity 1 : Stuart 0

Result: Bent handle bars; bent gear level; distended thigh muscle; swollen calf; the elbow we won't even talk about; roasties all over; and a couple of weeks of taking taxis.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

The case of the 12 and a half mil

The 419-ers apparently arrived in the country On Tuesday morning carrying a steamer trunk containing US$12.5. I knw this, because I received a phone call on my cell. They must have phoned my work number (I gave it to them) and gotten hold of my mobile number from the company secretary. Needless to say I was surprised.

I cannot figure out whetehr someone had actually travelled all the way from The UAE, or wherever, with the casement, of if they actually have operatives here in Malaysia, ready to fleece unsuspecting people out of their cash.

Weird. And quite nerve wracking at the same time.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Scam scum

My latest scam baiting effort is yielding some really amusing results. The mind boggles. My next trick is to try to get them to send me the actual paperwork. So far, however, they're not biting.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

What else did you bring?

I just want to say one thing about the situation with miners trapped underground in Australia. They've been there for 8 days (approximately) and what do the resuers offer them to eat? Egg sandwiches. For god's sake. Where's the pizza? The cheeseburgers? The tubes of amberfrosty?

Egg sandwiches? In a confined space?

Haven't they suffered enough?

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Beans, bean, the musical fruit...

Is this the end of an era? According to the BBC's news website, scientists in Venezuela have invented fart-free beans. What's the point, I ask, if you can't let rip with a "loud but proud," or a "silent but violent," or a "slinky but stinky?"

See the article here

Thursday, March 23, 2006

PLaying the 419 game

Ther have been people with a lot more patience than me, who have baited these 419-ers. One person even claims to have got US$3 out of one of them.

Very amusing. Check out the link by clicking --->here<---

I just had to post this

I was surfing the web, trying my hardest not to do any work - as you do - and I came across something really groovy. Rolex has released an anniversary edition Submariner.

It's green.

Which is ubelievably groovy in my opinion.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Do you think it might be fake

Seems like Nwinyer has given up since I asked him to send me an airticket - as a matter of good faith, you understand. But he was getting boring anyway. What appeared in my inbox this morning, on the other hand...well why don't you just see for yourself.

From Engr Zeid.
Hello friend.

Engr Zeid Al-hajahmad is my name 48 years from Jordan but in Africa,I am a business partner to late president Eyadema of Togo who died some months ago actually we deal on gold and diamond.

Then this is to introduce you into my project of transfering the sum of ($38million) that now into a security company in Ivory Coast due to the political crisis here.

Please if my proposal accepted kindly send your informations to further you in more details as I want you to stand and have the fund into your account before my leaving here find attached of my passport.

Best regards
Engr,Zeid Al-hajahmad

Friday, March 17, 2006

Nwinyer again

Here is round 2 from Nwinyer

dear.Stuart Godwin

frankly speaking my heart is filled with excitment while reading your email ok.

I want you to understand that i dont know anybody that will faithfuly abide with me in this transaction after my late father's blood relatives humiliated me by selling all my father's acquired properties.It was because of that their wicked act that made me to swear for not entrusting any among them just as i was informed by my late father saying to ensure i invested this money without any of his relatives geting closer to my life .It was because of this act that i arrived here in dakar senegal and handed these documents to the company's lawyer so that he will help me to protect these documents as i dont know who is who as uptill now i am so confused that i cant figure thos that conived and see to my father's agony death. Therefore what i want you to do for me now is to kindly arrange and come down here in dakar senegal so that both of us will see in person and could be bale to sitdown and discuss all modelities about this transaction in details please. I dont have any other person except you and for this reason i want you to kindly be with me in whatever that should be done to have this money out of the security company to you*r own bank account.

Other reasons why i want your being here is to help me to get this money lodged in a bank here on your name as i dont have any document that wil enable me have this money deposited here because of my status here as refugee.It is when you are here and we get this my inheritance retrieved from the security company, lodged in any bank of our general acceptability on your name and retransfer the whole money on your name that my mind can be relaxed.

I want you to kindly understand that i want you to help me relocate there in your country as soon as this money is confirmed retransfered and accepted there in your bank by either yourself or your next of kin or your bank.

The best thing i need from you is to be faithful with me and ready to help me to the core.

Best wishes.
Nwinyer Williams.

My response...


I'm not understanding what it is that you need me to do. Maybe you can explain further.


Thursday, March 16, 2006

The only child of late Dr.Solomon Williams

This morning my inbox contained 2 emails of the kind that assumes one is a complete cretin. I decided to play along, and have included the transcript of the email below. I'll keep you posted on how things pan out.

Dear,Good day.
I know that this mail might be a surpriseing to you but do consider it as an emergency. In a nut shell, My name Nwinyer Williams, from the republic of Sierria-Leone in west Africa. The only child of late Dr.Solomon Williams, I am looking for someone who can take me as a child or friend I promise to be obidient to you and I will bring happiness to your life,My late father was the managing director of Rainbow Gold and Diamond company in (KENEMA)Sierra-Leone.But he was poisoned to death alongside with my mother by his business associate, On one of their outing to discuss a business deal in oversea,

However, after their death I managed to stay alone and when the war broke out in my country. I escape to near by village here,with every important files of my father.He has the sum of (US$15.2M)Fifteene million two hundred thousand U.S Dollars only. This amount was deposited by my late father in one of the leading security company, Presently, I am saddled with the problem of securing a trust worthy foriegn personality to help me. I will map out 15% for you.and i will mapped out 10% for any miscellaneous expenses that you may incur during the transferring of the money over to your country (1) you will Stand on my behalf as the beneficiary for the claim of the inheritance from the company since the management of the company adviced that I should solicit for an individual or corporate organization to claim the deposit for me as they cannot release it directly to me due to my status right now.

(2)you will Help me secure my travelling documents to meet you as soon as my money is released to you. Furthermore,

you can contact the company for confirmation so that the company will know that you are my partner,that will enable the company correspond with you on my behalf.I am giving you this offers as mentioned with every confidence on your acceptance to assist me or adopt me as your Child or business partner if possible and manage the money for me.

My regard to your family.
Yours sincerely.
Nwinyer Williams.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

200 year old constitution, 200 year old thinking

A friend of mine recently pointed out to me that the USA has one of the oldest constitutions in the world (if not the oldest). And while other countries seem to rewrite their's on a regular basis following various revolutions, that of the USA remains intact, with only amendments. Good point, I guess.

So it surprises me that Americans are still arguing about the right to abortiion, when the europeans are already discussion the ethics of in-vitro fertilisation, and the right of one partner to use frozen embryos without the other's consent.

It seems that our American cousins are still stuck in medieval times. Shame. Open up your guilted cage and have a housewarming party, whydontcha.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

What does the shade smell like over there?

Here it smells damp. Not soggy-dog damp, but kinda cold damp. It's as though the small change in ambient temerature between the sunny bits and the shady bits is enough to literally squeeze molecules of water out of the air and up your nose.

I noticed this for the first time a couple of days ago when I was riding along on my motorcycle. The highway I was travelling along splits into a double decker section for a while, and I just happened to be on the lower level. Anyway, that's when I noticed it.

Just thought I'd mention this. Use it, don't use it. Whatever.