A weekend ago, we started our journey at 2pm on a Friday afternoon down to Penang for party which we were invited for. Our team which comprised about 20 pax of bloggers and staff split among ourselves to travel from KL to Penang. We came in 5 separate cars, one of them being a Hyundai Starex – intentionally engaged for this bloggers trip. Looks like a lot of people were heading down to Penang…we had to be divided into two hotels – Northam All Suites & Deluxcious Hotel as a lot of rooms were booked.

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The outdoor view of Deluxcious (the hotel I was staying)

 

By the time we arrived, it was already time to PARTY!

 

 

Me, my lovely Olivia & the Asahi ambassadors posing for a picture

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Group shot at the event photo wall

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Blogger Amanda & friend at the Asahi signage just before entering Soju Room, Penang Times Square

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The Penang underground club was filled with free flow of Asahi, beautiful people as well as spectacular acts.  For Club Asahi Miami’s second installation, Asahi Malaysia had actually made the effort to bring in world class performances which includes DJ Henrix & Kyroman.

 

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Party people pics ahead!

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Thank you Asahi Malaysia for having Team Advertlets over at your epic party in Penang! We are looking forward to the next one!

 

 

Wanna read up more about the event? Here’s more blogposts for you!

Jessica: http://thejessicat.com/advertsreviews/rocking-club-miami-asahi-in-my-beloved-penang-island-thanks-to-asahi-malaysia/

Rosalyn: http://www.rosalyntan.com/2013/06/asahi-club-miami-soju-room-penang-2013.html

Daniel: http://danielbydefault.blogspot.com/2013/06/club-asahi-miami-awesome-penang-trip.html

Audrey: http://www.audreypuiyan.com/2013/06/club-asahi-miami-soju-room-penang.html

Grace: http://graceoon.blogspot.com/2013/06/club-asahi-miami-soju-room-penang.html

Amanda: http://sugarplumcandyfloss.blogspot.com/2013/06/asahi-miami-club-soju-room.html

Erica: http://www.erica-t.com/2013/06/club-asahi-miami-soju-room-penang.html

 

 

 

I remember the first time I went to Dewan Filharmonic Petronas when I was in my earlier 20s, horribly skinny and I had to rent an oversized jacket if not I couldn’t go in. Back then I went because I was dating an older lady – and she was into this whole culture/theatre/classical music kind of thing. So you know la, layan only.

10 years later, I’m dragging my young girlfriend to the Petronas Philharmonic Hall. Pretty interesting role reversal. This makes it the 4th time I’ve been to the Dewan Philharmonic Petronas in my life.

DFP-madeonA bit about me and music – I’m happy to listen to whatever’s on the radio when I’m in the car, but you probably haven’t heard 90% of what I listen to at home, a lot of eclectic indie bands. I’ve got a Spotify Premium account, I’ve bought albums on iTunes, I was listening to MP3s back when people still used Winamp & Napster…I go for raves, I go for rock concerts, basically I like music like a fat kid likes cake :)

I’ll give you a quote from Madeon (an electro-house producer from France) that sums it up pretty nicely –
“Anyone hating any genre of music simply doesn’t know the context in which it’s meant to be enjoyed.”

One particular thing I like about classical music is that it gives a good background for my thoughts – a meditational aid in a way. And that it’s one of the first types of music that existed – before rock, before techno, and way before dubstep.

After collecting my tickets, and after a smoke in the lobby, I decided to pace around and talk to some people to take some pictures – the dress code has been relaxed significantly since 10 years ago, and it’ll be good to let people know what the dress code is nowadays that so that classical music can be more accessible to them. Honestly if you read it carefully it’s about the same dress code as going to Zouk – except for the jeans, sneakers and slippers part.

Check this out for a comparision:

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Serendipitously, one of the first people I asked for a photo was an Asian woman talking with a friend – and it turned out that she was Akiko Danis, a harpshichord player who was going to be in today’s performance.

She’s married to one of the violin players in the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra.

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With Akiko Danis

You’ll be surprised that there are a lot of local fans of classical music –the majority of attendees are not expats/Europeans/American – I did notice a lot of local Chinese speaking Mandarin people.

The performance I attended was ‘18th Century Evocations’ by the way – featuring music from Stravinsky, Mozart, Rossini & Marcello. Most of you would have only heard of Mozart – and well, I would fall in the same category too.

I’m also going to tell you don’t be late – in order to ensure the enjoyment of other patrons, you have to be there on time – if not you have to wait outside. However if you are late u can watch the performance on a video screen while you wait.

I’m telling you this because I was late. Actually I wasn’t late, but my date needed to use the washroom and get some stuff….so I was late. But anyway. What happens then is they will seat you during an interval. We had to wait about 10-15 minutes to go in, as the performance had already started.

Smart casual attire. Yup I asked some random people to take a picture.

Smart casual attire. Yup I asked some random people to take a picture.

While waiting, I heard “dia pakai seluar mini?” buzz over the walkie talkie of an usherer. Needless to say hot pants are unacceptable attire for Dewan Filharmonik Petronas.

There are a few different seating levels, but basically there’s the normal seats and box seating – the equivalent of the VIP area at clubs. You will pay premium prices for that, and some are booked by corporations. Also everyone can see you higher up so the metaphor is appropriate.

When I came in, taking front stage was Alexei Orgrintchouk who played the Oboe. The room is dead quiet btw, very amazing acoustics – you can even hear every detail, even hear him take a breath to blow into the oboe.

If it’s your first time to a performance by the way, here are some tips – don’t clap till u hear other people clapping. And cough/sternutate/or clear your throat in between breaks when there’s a long silence. ‘Sternutate’ means ‘sneeze’ by the way – see, you’ve already learnt a new word!

Conductor was Paul Goodwin, who was very expressive and jaunty – you can see he was truly enjoying His job. Unlike a rockstar that faces the audience, the conductor will have his back to the audience for the majority of the performance – he is the one that makes sure you are enjoying yourself.

You know how you can see movement from the corner of your eye? My theory is that although most of the musicians will be looking down on their instruments, they can “see” the conductor to determine the pace and mood they should be playing in.

Anyway – here’s how it works for classical music – Whether it’s referred to as a suite, concerto, sonata, or symphony, think of it as a ‘mini album’. And within each ‘album’, there are ‘tracks’, which are called movements.

For classical music, each piece is usually separated into a few movements (usually 3-4, but can be as many as 8 even) – each movement usually have different themes from joyful, to poignant, to regal or dark. Keeping it mind that this music, when composed, was usually used to accompany an opera or serve as a background for a story.

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You’re not allowed to take pictures inside – but I was there on a very special occasion earlier in the year, The Merdeka Awards (Which is where the first three pictures are from – and yes, that’s the Malaysian Prime Minister sitting behind me). The last picture (bottom right) is what I wore to that day at DFP.

I don’t know enough about classical music to tell you about the pieces I heard individually – but what you should know that the pieces that were played in the 17th to 19th century, you could probably think of this as the soundtrack to the time when the following things were first invented – the piano, the tuning fork, the steam engine, rubber was discovered, mercury thermometer & modern steel (yup – that long ago).

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The performance I attended.

But here’s a few things that I can tell you – for the last quarter of the performance, half performers left the stage and Akiko took the centrestage to play the harpsichord. Pretty serendipitous that of all the people I choose to randomly talk to, she is one of the seminal performers for today’s performance.

What does the harpshichord sound like? Think ‘Dracula’ or ‘here comes the bride’ – it’s slightly churchy sounding, very bright, and just a hint of electronic – if dubstep is a hard brick sized rock with sharp edges, the harpischord is a smooth pebble in your hands.

And the final piece, Mozart’s ‘Symphony No35 in D major – ‘Haffner’, K385 (from 1782) sounds like it was made to crown a king, very regal – then moves into a graceful, dignified movement before moving into the next part, which is a elegant dance with occasional cheeky outbursts, and ends up with an enthusiastic finale.

You have now learnt the following words from this blog post – seminal (important), jaunty (lively & cheerful) , serendipity (pleasant surprise) and sternutate (sneeze).

Now go learn something new about music and head down to Dewan Filharmonik Petronas – we do have arguably one of the world’s best orchestra’s in Malaysia, the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra there, and you should give it a visit. Check out Dewan Philharmonik Petronas’ website here for more details.

 

I like to think I’m somewhat decent in badminton – my most impressive shot was shooting a shuttlecock that hit my badminton coach on the head and even compensating for wind (it was a windy day). He immediately remarked “on purpose is it?”. I like to think he would been too proud of my accuracy to be angry at me. Hahah. This was back in high school, but I did play last year so I haven’t gotten too rusty.

Story from my past aside, I decided to take on a challenge – create a video for Axiata’s Up Your Game challenge.  Some of you probably may not know what Axiata is – they used to be known as TM International Berhad, and they own Celcom in Malaysia, as well as have majority  stake with a Indonesian telco (XL). Given badminton’s popularity on those areas, it makes sense for them to sponsor a badminton tournament.

I hope you enjoy my video contest entry :)

 

Consider making your own – it’s pretty worth it and is open to both Malaysians and Indonesians – check out the link to the video gallery for the submissions. The deadline has been extended to the 25th of March 2013, so set a day aside and give it a try! If you’re stuck for ideas, do check out the contest site and view the gallery, however you’re strongly encouraged to come up with your own original idea…tell you why in a bit!

Here’s how:

Click here for the contest site:

 

 

These are the prizes:

GOLD: Cash Prize Winning of MYR 5,000

SILVER: Cash Prize Winning of MYR3,000

BRONZE: Cash Prize Winning of MYR 1,500

 

The videos will be judged on the following criteria:

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Basically make it fun, entertaining…and try something novel that someone else hasn’t done :) Besides the cash prizes, all winners also get:

 

- An exclusive ‘VIP experience’ to attend the Semi Finals and Finals of the Event to be held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on the 13th and 14th of April 2013 .

- Gifts from Axiata and sponsors of Axiata Cup 2013!

 

So give it your best shot! If you do enter the contest, drop a comment, I’ll love to check out the competition too lol :)

 

It’s my second time with Petronas joining along for their Sentuhan Kasih program, and this time for it’s for Sentuhan Harapan Deepavali. The last time was for Petronas Sentuhan Kasih Raya. We started the day early, heading down to Perak. We bloggers joined a group of Universiti Teknologi Petronas students, Petronas employees as well as a few Petronas vendors to go down to Kampung Wellington is located at Ayer Tawar in Manjung Perak (about 2 hours drive from KL). It was a pretty rainy morning…a nice one to sleep in haha. I’m usually never up that early, but that day I had to get up at 5AM to arrive there on time.

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The program was run in collaboration with MyKasih, a non-profit organization.

 



Check out this video, hosted by Geethanjali (she’s a pretty famous Indian Radio DJ with over 28,000 followers on Facebook).

 

The Sentuhan Kasih program was started since 2005 and has benefited more than 8,000 families. And starting last year, they have been involving bloggers in the program too, who do the dual role of volunteering as well as covering the event on their blogs.

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As I was shooting a video, I didn’t get to take much of my own pics. Spot me in this one!

 

Towards the end of the programme, PETRONAS Senior General Manager of Group Corporate Affairs Division, Dato Mohammad Medan Abdullah and UTP Vice Chancellor Datuk Ir. (Dr) Abdul Rahim Hashim handed out cash donations to all of the families

 

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Petronas VIPs, area representatives as well as the residents in a group shot.

The locals of Kampung Wellington are mainly rubber tappers, plantation workers and farmers…There are 500 villagers there, with about 66 families (average 7 people per family). Most of them are underprivileged with an average household income of less than RM700 per month.

For us KLites, especially working people it’s hard to imagine living on RM700 by yourself for a week or two, let alone feed a family for an entire month. Almost all the families are Indian, there is only one Malay family. The nearest school is 10KM away, and the children go by bus everyday.

 

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Besides the cleanup, there were also educational programs for the villagers

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The VIPs trying their hand at making a traditional Indian snack.

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I like how I turned out in this shot lol. This was them passing out the gloves to the bloggers for the cleanup.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

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Some of the activities that were run include: cleaning up, clearing scrap wood, planting trees, repairing the community hall (which was in a bad shape and had a leaky roof), adding a new store room as well as a PA system and more amenities, as well as giving out shirts and toys to the children. There was also a substance abuse awareness talk by Red Crescent Malaysia and Persatuan Pengasih Malaysia, where the speaker talked about his own experience. The Sentuhan Kasih program isn’t just about a one off gotong royong, but the families also get monthly food aid for 2 years.

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Josh.my, RosalynTan.com, MissyCheerio.com and TianChad.com

We bloggers mainly took part in the cleanup as well as taking pictures of the activities. There were 20 bloggers, half of which were from Advertlets…and some of which were from the “other side” lol. You can check us out in the video here (Our very own Rosalyn Tan from Advertlets is in there too!)

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The Alla Rippu traditional dance.

 

Aside from that, there was also entertainment for the children, like a kolam making activity as well as they got to try the Alla Rippu traditional Indian dance demonstrated by Universiti Teknologi Petronas students. I got to talk briefly with one of the kids from the village. He was shy but understood what I said, and told me his name and was happy to pose for a picture.

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Group shot!

It’s good to have a program like Sentuhan Kasih to get started in volunteering – I’m happy to note that I will be taking part in Rockcorps Malaysia’s volunteer events this year as well (and Advertlets will be helping to push media coverage to get more volunteers). All in all it was a good experience, and it was nice to do something positive for a change – you could see that the people were genuinely excited to have visitors and help for their village, and it’s a humbling reminder that for most of us KL folk, our #firstworldproblems of being stuck in traffic jams and not having enough money to get the designer jacket we want pale in comparison to those who genuinely struggle and don’t have decent meals most of the time. Really puts things in perspective.



 


I think I have been wearing specs since I was 6 or 7 years old, strangely enough I got it from reading books, but in very bad lighting. Well since I didn’t get to watch much TV as a kid, I remember having a 3 TV program a week limit. Also, aside from that the bad vision (something I’ve to accept together with the good looks) – is hereditary – my whole family has horrible eyesight – we all either wear specs or contacts.

Most of you may have noticed that I am not with glasses anymore – around late August this year, I had LASIK done at Optimax (the TTDI branch). This is a picture from one of the first checkups I did where I had to put in some very trippy eyedrops that somehow, made my eyes unable to focus on close objects (it’s necessary for them to determine suitability).

So this is my account of my surgery– I am typing this without glasses, and as of far I am very happy with my new vision. And honestly looking back at my old photos I feel odd with specs. Haha.

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Me without glasses now.

Check out this video blog below which should give you a great idea of what you should expect. So far I don’t think anyone has done anything like this in Malaysia. You’ll notice that I asked a lot of questions, some of them stupid – yes, it was for your benefit, I planned to shoot it as it’s a subject matter that not many people know about, and people have a lot of questions about.

A short history…since I was wearing specs since about Standard One, my eyesight is pretty bad. So without it, my power is quite high – 600 for one eye, and the other eye is about 250. So that makes me legally blind without my glasses last time. I tried contacts for a few weeks when I was 20 or 21 but I could never get used to it – the idea of poking my eyes everyday and having to remember to take it off at night was very uncomfortable. It didn’t help that I once had a friend who was confined to an eye hospital for 2 weeks for an eye infection (the probable cause was a recalled/banned contact lens solution, but it was not proven).

As you can see I was pretty into specs last time…those aren’t all the pairs I have I was trying to decide on a nice one.

I do see halos and glare when driving at night due to astigmatism and LASIK will not take that problem away, in fact it may make things slightly worse during the first few weeks or months. These problems are temporary and disappear completely within three to six months.But the thing is you can still wear specs on top of that. For day time use on a daily basis, it’s pretty alright, even for driving at night. But your doctor may recommend you wear tinted or slightly powered lenses when driving.

About the procedure

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The machine used to make a map of your eye. Looks very psychedelic.

In the most simple way I can think to explain it, LASIK (Laser-Assisted in Situ Keratomileusis) involves cutting the eye open, where they cut the cornea flap open and will laser whatever that is under there and then you will have better eye sight.

You will need to go for a few checkups beforehand, to ensure that you are a suitable candidate about 1 or 2 different sessions. After that you will be going for the actual surgery. The doctor will give numbing eye drops and then mark your eyes for the laser. There will be 2 machines to do it basically – one to open the cornea flap, the other to do the laser correction. You could refer to the video.

Generally speaking, every procedure has its own risks but this is an elective procedure. Well it’s not like you’re handicap then you need to operate your legs, so the risks are low enough. I am very thankful that the doctor that worked with me from Optimax has already done like thousands of surgeries; he’s been with them since they started in 1995 if I’m not mistaken. So choose a doctor that you’re comfortable with. Mine was Dr Stephen Chung (Optimax TTDI); I’d recommend him because he took the trouble to answer all my stupid questions (watch the video, I even feel rather annoyed at myself honestly lol) and he was very patient.

 

 

How long does the procedure takes?

The actual laser and cutting process would take about 10-15 minutes at most Even if you include the marking on the eye and wait for the numbing eye drops to kick in which would probably take about 30 minutes as I remember. Checkups and consultation would take up the majority of the time – about 3-4 hours total as I remember. The machine on the left (looks groovy right) is used to generate a “map” of your eye to determine its weaknesses.

 

How long does it take to recover?

You could open your eyes almost immediately afterwards. They don’t require you to cover your eyes but it’s just that you’d be very sensitive to light. They say it takes 6-8 months for the power to stabilize, meaning your power will get better in time. I’m happy to say that I have 20/20 vision now, which means I can focus from 20 feet away.

 

What do you need to do during recover, or not do? Do you have to avoid certain things?

Apparently you should avoid smoky places but it’s hard, I didn’t go clubbing for few days (I know right, shocking). They will give you something to wear across your eyes to wear when you’re sleeping, like some kind of shield. But to be honest I didn’t wear it because I was pretty sure I wouldn’t be rubbing my eyes or be tossing and turning. I’d recommend you to do if you’re a person that moves around a lot when you sleep or if you tend to rub your eyes or scratch yourself, please wear them. Other than that I put a lot of eye drops. They’ll give you a whole eye drop regiment that you’d have to follow; one is an anti-biotic/antiseptic thing and the other is the eye drops like artificial tears

 

How much does it cost?

There are about several places in Malaysia that offer LASIK, whether its specialist centers like Optimax, eye hospitals or hospitals that also offer Lasik. Some places offer RM2,000-RM3,000 per eye. I will tell you Optimax is not the cheapest (RM3000-RM4000 per eye, and it varies depending if you go for the standard or custom LASIK procedure), but um if you really want to go for the cheapest eye surgery then it’s really up to you la. Cheap is good for stuff like underwear and socks at the pasar malam, but you really can’t replace your eyes. The average working executive probably won’t be able to afford LASIK at one shot, but they have payment plans where you can pay in installments up to 24months.

 

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Prepping before the eye surgery

Does it hurt?
No.  Honestly.The LASIK scene in Final Destination 5 has probably scared a lot of people off from laser eye surgery. First thing, it’s a movie. Second thing, they were predetermined to die because they avoided fate by not dying when they were supposed to. Third thing…there is no way they will leave you unattended with the machine. Fourth thing, if you’re really scared of pain, go zap your finger with the laser like I did in the video. And the eyedrops will numb your eyes, so when the doctor draws on your eyes with a marker it’s a very dull sensation.

 

The risks? Can undo anot?

Everything has risks. Honestly if you have a panicky personality and think you’ll freak out on the table, don’t do it. If you’re on any medication (or illegal drugs, lol)…don’t do LASIK or at least wait till its out of your system – if you’re wondering why its relevant…nearly all drugs dilate your pupils and affect your recovery). It’s important for you to be absolutely honest with your doctor so that they can determine if you are a suitable candidate for LASIK.

 

The longer you wait though, the higher the risks – the main factors that determine risk are the thickness of your cornea, and your age (the longer you wait the riskier it gets). I had a very good risk profile, with good cornea thickness and only being 29 at the time, I had a very low risk factor. LASIK is not reversible, unlike ICL (implantable contact lenses…something else I also considered) but for about 5-10% of people it will “wear off” and they may need to do surgery again(there is a lifetime warranty for Optimax though). But either way even if you have the perfect LASIK experience you will still probably need reading glasses when you get older. It’s LASIK, not magic, but it’s very freeing all the same.

 

Who are the people that will benefit most?

There are people that can’t wear contacts. And some people that look bad with spectacles. But its cool to have more options. I mean for the first time I can actually wear sunglasses which is really cool – and I’m now converting all my old glasses to powerless lenses. Which will give me a few different looks

 

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Pic from one of my first checkups.

I have fond memories of a particular girl that steamed up my glasses, but it’s nice to be able to get close to that special someone without worrying about poking her in the eye. It is also nice to be able to swim and not to be worried about that. Also those that do sports, you would benefit greatly, I would say. Even if you play badminton or something like that, you don’t need to worry about your glasses falling off and things like that.

 

Do you need to go for follow up checkups for post surgery? If yes, how often do you need to go for regular checkups after having Lasik surgery? Is there complicated after care procedures?

I think I was supposed to go for 2, and I went for the second one a week late because honestly I felt fine. Honestly I’m a horrible patient….I ask too many questions, had to postphone many appointments due to my schedule and I didn’t really follow the after care treatment (for example putting eyedrops on schedule, sleeping with a face shield…I know this isn’t a good thing, but I’m just telling you my honest experience, and that there is some allocation for patient failure to follow up properly, they will ensure you are safe.).

 

This is going to be my first post about LASIK – I will be following up with another since when I posted it on Facebook, I got a lot of questions… so drop me your questions in the comments and I’ll answer them in the next one. I’ll be also writing about life after LASIK (I still instinctively push my now non-existent glasses up my nose, and I feel the urge to clean my non-existent glasses when I see a lens cloth lying around). Some habits are hard to unlearn.

 

Honestly I was pretty apprehensive at first (try wearing spectacles for more than 20 years and try to imagine a life without them). But as someone who shifted out from my parents house at 21 years old…this was probably the second most important step towards my freedom and independence in life. I still like glasses, but as a fashion option, and I’m very happy I did LASIK.

 

Late at night, my mind wanders. I guess it’s better I write things down than keep thinking about things that I am unlikely to invent or don’t have the resources to . There used to be this section on Dilbert.com called “Lazy Entrepreneur” that was a place where people could just share the ideas that they had, and if someone liked them, they could just contact them to invest in it…or just steal the idea from there and nobody would know. So here goes what I would submit if that site were still around.

Today’s topic. Weight loss through technology!

Travel at light speed or in low gravity, and lose weight

These are going to be two possibilities in the distant future, but maybe not within my lifetime – weight loss through travelling at light-speed or in low gravity in space. Previous research has shown that astronauts undereat in space and have low appetites, mostly due to the lack of gravity. With less energy needed to lift your body off the ground, you need to eat way less. Commercial space travel is also going to be possible in the next few years with companies like Virgin Galactic (yes, part of the same Virgin Air, Virgin Music group) – the problem is more of regulations rather than being able to find paying customers – from the article : ($200,000 per person with a $20,000 deposit). As of May 2012, there are around 550 ticket-holders in line to fly with Virgin Galactic. Passengers who have already submitted their deposit include Stephen Hawking, Tom Hanks, Ashton Kutcher, Katy Perry, Brad Pitt, and Angelina Jolie. So to go to space AND lose weight. Awesome kan?

Charge your phone, by plugging it into your own body.

As well as the possibility of burning calories and charging your phone by plugging it into your own body…converting body fat into usable electricity. Cybernetic implants/add-ons (eg Google Glasses) are gaining in popularity, but it’ll take a while before we get USB ports (or Apple’s new 30 pin port that was introduced in the iPhone, haha!)  in our body to charge our gadgets.

The problem is being able to convert energy from calories to electricity and be able to maintain an efficient enough conversion ratio, a lot of the energy is lost in conversion. For example, kinetic energy is enough to power a watch (chances are your watch is powered this way, but is not enough to charge your phone.).

You can also power a light bulb with a potato. No kidding

Nevertheless, if this body fat to electrical energy issue is worked out it makes for a very interesting proposition – staying slim and staying in touch with your phone (if you lose the connecting wire its still a problem though, lol). Of course, there’s also the potential of the USB port getting infected … or you die of starvation if you’ve left yourself plugged in too long.

Anyway, one day someone may invent these, and I’m hoping this is a blog post that they would have read in the course of inventing either. Good night.

To all Hindus celebrating Deepavali, I wish you a very Happy Deepavali and a Happy Holidays to myself!! To all my Hindu friends do take note, here are other things you can do after your prayers at the temple, open house visiting or possibly after a night of partying! (There are lots of good parties this week actually, due to the many public holidays.)

Do take a look at the schedule below (and check out the video for a preview)

‘Be The Light’ Exhibition at Galeri Petronas, Suria KLCC.

DATE 12 NOON 3 PM 6 PM
8th Nov 2012 (Thursday) Henna Drawing - 12.00pm Classical Indian Music - 6.00pm
10th Nov 2012 (Saturday) The Art of Wearing Indian Costumes - 12.00pm The Art of Kollam - 3.00pm Classical Indian Music - 6.00pm
11th Nov 2012 (Sunday) The Purity of Oil - 12.00pm Henna Drawing - 3.00pm Classical Indian Music - 6.00pm
13th Nov 2012 (Tuesday) DEEPAVALI DAY
Henna Drawing - 12.00pm Classical Indian Dance - 3.00pm The Art of Kollam - 6.00pm
15th Nov 2012 (Thursday) AWAL MUHARRAM
Classical Indian Music - 12.00pm The Purity of Oil - 3.00pm The Art of Wearing Indian Costumes - 6.00pm
17th Nov 2012 (Saturday)
The Art of Kollam - 12.00pm Henna Drawing - 3.00pm Classical Indian Dance - 6.00pm
18th Nov 2012 (Sunday)
Classical Indian Music - 12.00pm The Art of Wearing Indian Costumes - 3.00pm The Purity of Oil - 6.00pm
20th Nov 2012 (Tuesday)
Classical Indian Dance - 12.00pm Henna Drawing - 6.00pm
22nd Nov 2012 (Thursday)
The Art of Kollam - 12.00pm The Art of Wearing Indian Costumes - 6.00pm
24th Nov 2012 (Saturday)
Classical Indian Music - 12.00pm The Purity of Oil - 3.00pm Classical Indian Dance - 6.00pm
25th Nov 2012 (Sunday)
The Art of Wearing Indian Costumes - 12.00pm Henna Drawing - 3.00pm The Art of Kollam - 6.00pm

The interesting activities you see above are brought to you by none other than Petronas and it will be taking place at Galeri Petronas, Suria KLCC. If you don’t already know, Petronas are usually very famous for their festival campaigns ; they really do take it to the next level.  Hmm… I can’t wait to see their activities line up for the upcoming Chinese New Year….last year’s one was pretty good too!

I, for one, will be sure to drop in for the “Art of Wearing Indian Costumes”. This year, my parents actually got me a dhoti from India – check out the detailing, this is pretty authentic stuff :)

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And, sarees look great on the fairer sex too, don’t they. I shall leave you with this video by Petronas – Deepavali 2012, Be The Light.

There are also some interesting videos up on Petronas’ Youtube page with various Malaysians sharing their favourite Deepavali experiences (you may remember the very good looking “Erman” from the Petronas short film ‘Strangers).

You can also check out Petronas Facebook page for more information at:

https://www.facebook.com/notes/petroliam-nasional-berhad-petronas/be-the-light-list-of-activities-lined-up-at-galeri-petronas/10151139685003549

Happy Deepavali you all!

Lastly….

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It has definitely been quite awhile since I’ve last updated my blog. With
so many things going on and all those cool events that have been happening
around lately, I could hardly find the time for a blog post.

But anyway, it would be a real sin not to share the below with you guys….this is my video blog of the event below!

What was that all about? Well, it is a programme called Sentuhan Kasih organized by Petronas. We had to wake up at 5am in the morning to get on a
bus which took us to somewhere deep inside a hilly area near Gombak where the Orang Asli settlement is located.

We had so much fun seeing and doing things one will never get to do on a daily basis. I will spare you the details – you can look up the other bloggers…Rosalyn Tan, Broframestone, Akubiomed, AudreyPuiyan, AmandaLiu, KarmunNg, Erica-T, VanesPhung and Zulaika to piece the stories together and find out what an amazing time we all had. It was great to be able to give back a bit to the community, and seeing the happy faces of the children.

Anyhow, here is the official video of the Sentuhan Kasih programme:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UbGC2NE-29k

Till then, folks!!

People keep sharing this although its false. I got this several times on Whatsapp, blogs, etc. It doesn’t help that there don’t seem to be any search results on Google about this.

It doesn’t hurt to check, and I know first hand because I did:

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Screenshot of my correspondence with the Channel NewsAsia fanpage

But anyway, it’s fake – this was what was spreading around:

As seen on TV this morning on CNA (Channel News Asia) which is blocked in Malaysia TV, there is a syndicate of men/s in KL for the last 24hours stabbing and robbing their victims in broad daylight and crowded places. The 1st incident was yesterday at around 4pm in Puduraya as the girl was getting on a bus back to Ipoh, as she was going up the guy was coming down and of sudden she was stab but survive, she was rob only. Next incident at 5.30pm in Low Yat going across to Berjaya Time Square two girls after work heading to Berjaya from Low Yat one of them were stab and rob apparently she died from her injuries the other was not however harm. 3rd incident was in KLCC at 6.30pm another girl was stab and killed while she was heading to her car after work, as the CCTV showed the killer could only been seen from the back, it seem that he studied the place before committing the crime.
All this happen in a day with 1 hour apart from each other and suspected the same person. Some of the shopping complex has ordered to close or step up security.
Please to all my fellow ladies colleagues, again please ensure your surroundings and watch your step in crowded places. They want your money but also they do not you to identify them as they are not covered with mask. So please very careful. They have speculated that the person might be in Selangor and some of the shopping complex is on high alert. Precautions at Sunway Pyramid, Mid Valley, One U and Subang Parade.

As members of the public, we’re concerned about crime, but spreading around false rumours isn’t going to make things easier.
There are no reports on Channel News Asia about people going around stabbing and robbing girls in KL. There’s plenty of crime la, but not that level of violence…sigh.
Also, Channel News Asia isn’t blocked in Malaysia – it shows on TM Unifi’s IPTV on Channel 122.
As a parting note, all of these below are real though, and from the past few months:

If you can, read this article before you read this post. It’s a great article written by a friend whom I often see while clubbing, Marina Suwendy.

Chasing The Dream – an interview with Tony Fernandes in The Star Malaysia

There’s some juicy stuff in there about the AirAsia/MAS reverse share swap, but the most interesting quote I got from the article was Tony commenting on why he bought the Queens Park Rangers (emphasis mine):

“I watched us lose 4-0 to Bolton. Then I bought the club. You don’t buy a club for just one season. You buy something when you see the potential for what it could be. It’s in London. It has a good fan base. It has the potential to build a great training academy. A great stadium. My whole life has been about building things. If you buy Manchester United — what are you buying? You’re buying someone else’s success. What could I do for Manchester United? At QPR, I can do loads.

Most of you are familiar with Tony’s story (Founder of AirAsia & the Tune Group, minority race in Malaysia, huge odds against him, etc) so I won’t elaborate, but its nice to see a once underdog root for another underdog.

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Tony Fernandes is rarely in Zouk, but when he was, I took a picture with him.

I’ve made about 8 major ‘investments’ in people so far over the past few years. I can say that only 3 can be considered good investments. Enough to cover the mistakes made trusting the other five, and in time, to pay off many times in the next few years. Not being a drama queen about it, its not quite a simple “these fuckers hurt my feelings kind of thing”, but these people have made me lose friends and business, and two of them left me broke for almost a year. The worst part is for those four, the betrayal was intentional and it wasn’t quite a case of just abandoning me they got what they needed, they actively sought (and probably are still seeking) to wrangle what they can away.  But that’s life.

You only attract thieves if you have treasure.

What’s interesting is that of the ones that let me down, most were already “somewhere” in their life, and skilled. And most of the ones that have not let me down, were young and inexperienced to start with, but had potential, which I was lucky enough to spot.

Investing in people isn’t quite just about money. How do you invest in someone? Spending time with them. Developing them, and accepting their weaknesses, and co-opting some of their dreams together with your own. Maybe even start a business with them, or work with them somehow and build something great together. Like how you get better returns from shares if you invest early, the same can apply to people.

I’ll write more about this soon, its actually makes for a much longer story. But meantime -

Do you think there’s anyone you should be spending more time with, that you could grow together with?

I’ve chosen 2 more to trust this year with some very big things btw. Let’s hope that works out.

Also, something else I can learn from Tony Fernandes is remembering people & faces better.

I remember there was a time when I first met and talked to him at Hannah Tan’s birthday in Mont Kiara a few years back, then later a few months later, he was giving a speech at a young entrepreneur’s conference. He remarked that I had cut my hair. How awesome is that. Tony Fernandes remembered that I used to have long hair. Wow.

Remembering faces with names is hard for me – I have many times, said to some people apologetically ‘Sorry I can’t remember your name, but we first met at X and you were wearing X”. Somehow faces just don’t ‘process’ for me. I even forgot a very hot famous local actress repeatedly, but thankfully she was sweet about it. Nowadays I make it a point to visually associate more distinctive facial traits and their placement (eg a mole, birthmark, etc) with names.

So here’s to hopefully the rest of the year spent making better judgements of people, remembering people’s names and learning Mandarin. Okay, maybe I’m too old to learn Mandarin.

Been a while since I updated this. Let’s just recap on what’s been happening recently, before I attempt to come up with a more regular schedule. I won’t even try arranging them in sequence, but let’s just say that it was between February – April 2012.

First off, as of March this year…Advertlets is now 5 years old! That’s a while! Like if you take a 5 year old kid, that’s 99CM! More than half your current height (I often use this metaphor as a point to illustrate the passing of time). On a side note, when I first started Advertlets on 9th of March 2007, I was 24 years old. Now, I am still 24 years old. Isn’t that amazing?

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Below: I cut my hair yeah. Like it? Also lost some weight. I’ve started on personal training…trying to up my sessions to twice a week at least but my schedule (and two bouts of falling sick) doesn’t really help. Below is me and some pretty ladies as usual at the Mercedes-Benz Stylo Fashion Grand Final 2012.

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The below picture is at the Zouk @ Sepang rave with headliner Afrojack (who did not have an Afro, or was named Jack. But he played a really good set). Also, notably, it is the first time I’ve met a girl with a Japanese name that turned out to be actually…Japanese! She’s in the picture. Can you guess who?

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That’s us at the launch of Sold.my – put together with Advertlets Blogger and psychologist / emcee / model / blogger extraordinaire Choo Mei Sze. Quite happy that its a first – an event we put together not just for bloggers, but the media as well.

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So well, my bestest and fattest friend Jason Ong celebrated his 22nd birthday…it was an amazing mix of bloggers and good looking people, and above all, friends. To tell the truth I really feel pressured to top it with my upcoming birthday in August.

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Mandy Chan celebrated her birthday too! Honestly it always makes me happy when our bloggers hang out on their own accord, not cause they are forced to :) And, low or high traffic blogger, everyone’s mostly nice to each other, and I’ve seen quite a few genuine friendships (and relationships) develop. Say no to elitist blogger cliques!

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There was the Johnnie Walker parties. Good as usual – how could it be anything otherwise? Advertlets Blogger Audreypuiyan won the grand prize, so we got to party in style, and she got to meet Jensen Button on stage too :)

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On the work side, notably this month I was happy to be part of two things :

- The Cradle Coach & Grow program as a mentor/advisor with MATRADE and Cradle. Imagine meeting 10 clients in 1 whole day, finding out what they do, and advising them on how social media can help their business. It was an exhausting experience, but a fulfilling one.

- Speaking on social media at a private conference on brand building. It’s been a while since I’ve done some public speaking, good to know I’m not rusty!

Oh, and there’s one blog post that is no longer here btw. It wasn’t removed because it wasn’t true. Every word was. One word – mercy. That, and the hope that some people can actually change, once they’ve learnt there are some things they can’t get away with.

Lastly, here’s something random. When was the last time you saw something which was both racist AND adorable? And before you say anything, its okay for me to post this because I’m Chinese, and I admit, we eat anything, seriously.

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Toodles, peoples! The next blog post will hopefully be here in 1-2 days. There are hundreds of you that come here each day to see old content purely through the fact that my site is well SEO-ed, but I hope to give you new content regularly, because that’s the whole point of blogging la. Isn’t it ironic that as the founder of a blogging company, my work barely leaves me time to blog?

You can encourage me with comments on this blog post, or seductive private messages to my social network accounts urging me to reveal more of my mystique.

About Donovan Chan…

General March 31st, 2012

The entire fiasco between me and Donovan Chan has been solved and was a terrible misunderstanding. Donovan has of now, purchased the laptop from me as of today. Thanks and let’s not have many comments on this. We apologize to friends, families and clients whom have been dragged into this.

You’ll also find a statement from Donovan Chan here.

http://www.facebook.com/DonovanSTChan/posts/320265454694669