Friday, October 19, 2007

Spare Tyre

Finally went for a drink with my friend from Prudential. We had been talking and talking about going for a booze since almost 3 months ago. It all started when she sent me a photo of my professor Steven Haberman and I together with 2 actuaries from Prudential (Mr Ng Keng Hui and Mr Ong Kheng Heng) and the Actuarial Society president, my boss Mr Raymond Lai. I've actually uploaded the photo into Friendster.

I wanted the photo very desperately becuz I have tremendous respect for Prof Haberman. And it's also due to the fact that he immediately recognised me on the day he gave a talk on life annuities in Prudential. I can't describe how great an honour it was.

Anyway my friend Mei Lih brought some of her co-workers and superiors along and we had quite a happy hour in Beach Club. I can see that they're all down-to-earth and caring people. How nice. After the session I went up their building and chatted with fellow Ipohmali Lisa for a while. I drove Mei Lih back to her house afterwards.

Along the KL-Seremban highway I thought my car ran over some object and felt a small metal clank around my left rear tyre. That part of my car started becoming really noisy. I half suspected that my tyre had gone flat. I decided not to stop along the dark & dangerous emergency lane so I continued until we reached the BHP station near the Sri Petaling Carrefour. My suspicions were confirmed. I replaced the flat one with the spare tyre before sending Mei Lih home.

Since I started driving in KL I had to replace flat tyres 4 times in 4 years (that's once a year on average). Thank goodness all of them happened to rear tyres. I need to buy a new Goodyear tyre before I drive back to Ipoh for All Souls' Day.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

A Fruitful Weekend

Joined Lifeliners Adrian, Christina, Irene & Ivy Teh, Sister John and the Puchong kids for Pak Lah's open house in PWTC on Saturday noon. The queue was crazily LOOOOOONG.

Then we brought them to KLCC where they tried the bubble elevator for the first time. The dark sky was threatening to pour. The kids can't wait to play with water that they actually jumped into the fountain pool (which is forbidden). However we brought them to the wading pool instead, where they played to their hearts' content. Just as we got all of them out of the pool, it finally started to rain. The Lord wanted the kids to have fun too! Christina and I followed the kids and Sister John back to Puchong in the bas kilang, all tired and spent but very pleased to see the joy written on all the young faces.

Managed to get a quick shower at home before driving to the 5.00pm carolling practice at SFX. It rained so heavily that several parts of the Federal Highway were filled with inches of water. Thankfuly I arrived at church safely. The sopranos, altos, tenors and basses were being sorted out. Janice, Marie and Annie were the Sopranos; Irene and Jude (did I get her name correct?) the altos. With the help of Patrick and Mag, I found that I'm a tenor together with Julius and Samuel. The basses Alex and Lawrence completed this makeshift choir. For a start we practised "Silent Night". There were some glitches but we managed to piece it together just before Mass, though there was much refining needed. Can't wait for next practice.

After Mass I brought George Michael (George & Michael lah), Jovina, Melissa and Eric for dinner and fellowship @ Chuan Lee. Home sweet home for everyone afterwards.

Sunday morning Michael, Jovina and I went to GSC 1Utama for Chuck and Larry (U're right, Celia. It was darn funny. And Jessica Biel was OOZING HOT. I wish I was Adam Sandler!!!)

In the evening I went jogging around my apartment area, having missed Thursday's badminton. My fitness level is much better than a year ago before started training for Kinabalu. I used to stop to catch my breath every quarter of the perimeter then. Now I could run at least 5 rounds continuously with ease.

Continued reading Sidney Poitier's "The Measure of A Man" since dinner.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Re: Carebears and Steven Spielberg's Munich

You're right, Celia...we simply cannot please everyone. Also, who am I to say who matters more than others? After all I had vowed to let JC drive my life. Looking back I realise He had chosen the right thing for me. At least now I know more about the persons I talked to (and hopefully vice versa).

Magdalene from Melaka is rather 'dreamy' and always cannot remember my name; Janice from Sandakan has a smooth, powerful soprano voice. Both contributed so much to the success of the mid-autumn event.

Well I suppose I can ganti balik last week by eating dinner with the IPBA ppl this Saturday lah.

The most recent movie I watched was Steven Spielberg's "Munich". A fantastic film that combines many complex issues within the main storyline - a group of civilian Jews recruited by the Mossad to assassinate men listed to be responsible for the 1972 Munich massacre. As the story progressed, most of them (and the audience) would begin to wonder if it's justifiable to treat violence with violence, to follow orders without questions/proof and to assassinate someone in cold blood. They would also begin to see the irony that those who replaced their assassinated targets went on to create more violence and kill more people. The secrecy and possibility of being betrayed by secret intelligence were evident throughout. Towards the end after three of his team were killed, the protagonist (played by Eric Bana) became paranoid that he or his family might be next targets of assassination (he didn't know whether it was the Palestinians or the Mossad themselves).

The film draws the parallel between the Jews and the Palestinians in the sense that both sides would do anything, at all costs and for as long as it takes to have a land they call home (because it was the only thing that mattered).

In the climactic final scene (with the New York skyline in the background), a distinction was made between Jews who wanted peace by doing good to others (Eric Bana inviting Geoffrey Rush to his house to break bread with his family) and Jews with hardened hearts who reject goodness and would continue killing for 'peace' (Geoffrey Rush snubbing the invitation). In the background stood the former World Trade Centre, a symbol that represented the consequences of treating violence with violence and for us to learn from the 911 tragedy.

My verdict: 9/10