Friday, May 31, 2002

It's been a rather unproductive week. For some reason, there's this lethargy which falls like a shroud over me everytime I step into my office, and lifts the moment I reach my car to drive home. It's rather amazing how it happens. I'm all cheery and bubbly on my way up to the 26th floor. And then I risk an electrocution when I open the door ( but that's O-KAY ). And then my cheeriness goes away and I change into Prosey the Unhappy. That's why most of my posts are depressed homicidal rantings - I usually blog from work. It's like there's this curse over the office - "All who are inside will be unhappy". Or maybe it's just me, cause almost everyone else seems to be rather satisfied playing Starcraft.

It must be the clock. When everyone left the office for lunch today and I tried to catch a nap, the near-silence revealed to me the inconspicuous presence of the clock's ticking. I have never noticed it before until then. The office is usually so noisy I can only occasionally hear myself think, let alone listen to the sinister ticking of a clock. But now I know. Yes, I *know*.

Thursday, May 30, 2002

There's an evil pimple growing on the side of my nose. It hurts. LIKE THE DEVIL. I tried squeezing it out this morning in the toilet, but the little bastard proved to be one tough . It wouldn't come out. It was stubborn. It was also hurting like hell. Yes, I'm probably making a big fuss about it. But like I told Mich C last night after I miraculously locked myself out of my car ( stop laughing, you fools, it could happen to you too someday ), it's the small things in life which matter. Like how much sugar you put into your coffee. Or how often you brush your teeth. Or whether you do the housework or not. Or how often you lock yourself out of your car.

I know I should have slept earlier last night. But I was busy packaging my Pathways engine. Now I'm all grumpy and disgruntled, and more than a little pissed after realizing that I forgot to put up the link to the engine from my homepage. Anyway, the readme.txt isn't done yet. I'll update my homepage again when the readme.txt and perhaps a proper test module is done.

Wednesday, May 29, 2002

The static has returned. Sigh. I knew it was too good to last. Maybe the office is colder today. Aircon switched on through the night, colder office, less sweatier palms. I know it's back, cause I get this little tingly feeling in my hand everytime I grasp the door handle. Looks like plans to 'accidentally' kill my team leader will have to wait. Put on hold until sweatier palms can be reliably maintained. And when that happens... God help that little insect, I'll fry his brains with my black shirt. I can read front page article now...


Georgetown, Penang - A senior software engineer was thrown off the 26th floor of Gurney Tower today after accumulated static electricity in a junior engineer's body electrocuted him. According to witnesses, the victim tapped the shoulder of the junior engineer and was instantly thrown across the office towards the windows, which his momentum broke before plunging down twenty-six floors. The coroner's office has issued a statement saying that the victim's brains were fried due to the electrocution. Foul play has been ruled out, although the junior engineer has been confined to an undisclosed location for observation and the software company the two engineers were working in has been fined for carpetting the office floor excessively. The victim's next of kin has been informed of this tragedy.
What is it with people and lack of toilet hygience? I thought I was a little bit on the dirty side, but the toilet here puts my 'unwashed jeans and socks for a week' habit to shame. I have cigarette ashes all over the floor, sometimes even on the toilet seat. I think that's disgusting. And people seem to like leaving their pubic hair everywhere - the toilet seat, the sink, the tap, the button you press to flush the urinal, the toilet door handle... urgh, the list goes on. I find that even more disgusting. Wait a minute, is that...

*excessive swearing*

Tuesday, May 28, 2002

Hello. Today, I seem to be in tune with the static electricity in my office. I didn't feel the jolt of electricity when I pushed the button to unlock the office door. I didn't feel anything when I opened the door. However, when my team leader tapped me on the shoulder, he got a little shock. Well, serves him right for giving me stupid things to do. I wonder if I can generate enough static electricity to blow him clear across the office next time. Must rub my legs on the carpet more. And, according to Von Darke on the Internet now, maintain sweaty palms. Ooh, sweaty palms is the key to not getting electrocuted by static electricity ( not proven by the Safety Department Board - DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME ).
This Tuesday is turning out to be a bad day. I suppose it's a result of Monday ( yesterday ) being a holiday. The Monday Blues have been postponed to Tuesday, and 5am bedtimes along with the long weekend is turning the day into a horrible Monday-gone-wrong scenario. I'm being given really impossible things to do ( search for something which doesn't exist on the Internet ), my colleagues give me the extremely cold shoulder ( and this I really wonder, because I didn't make the other guy leave the company damnit ), my damn team leader is still alive... small minor annoyances like these can really put you down. I should have bought that can of Sarsi, I really should have.

Monday, May 27, 2002

Had supper with Ee Jin last night. We went through all the usual conversation trees, from career talk to all the usual backstabbing about people we know ( oh you know who you are ). But suppers, of course, shouldn't be just idle talk. So I shall now present you the results of last night's discussion:

How To Marginally Know If Maybe, You're Gay

  1. Get some gay porn. Video ( as in short mpeg video clips ) is best, followed by text if you have a good imagination. Pictures are okay, but they're not really effective due to their static nature.
  2. Watch/read/view it all. From start to end.
  3. If you find that you want some more after that, there's a rather high percentage you could be gay.
  4. Otherwise, you have a lower percentage of being gay. Of course, you could also be in denial.
Note: Due to the nature of lesbian porn, this will probably not work as well on women.

I hope someone found that useful. No, I'm not gay. Sorry to disappoint the perverted folks out there who would love nothing else but to catch me in a compromising position with some other guy.

Sunday, May 26, 2002

Doing the complete tour of Gama, Super Komtar and Lifestyle in search of Star Wars toys isn't exactly what I call a night well-spent, but it does bring back memories of a solitary me stalking the streets of PJ, armed only with my bag and a bottle of water. Back then, it was me, the roads and a lot of afternoon sun. Tonight, it was me, my car and some cloudy moonlight. The search proved futile in the end - I was tempted to buy the Super Battle Droid, but the RM39.90 price tag was a little hefty. Maybe the 'exploding damage' feature would have been fun 15 years ago, but the reason I'm buying now is to decorate my computer ( I wanna tape my action figures to my casing ). I miss the old days of Star Wars, when action figures from all three episodes were so compatible that anyone could sit in any of the vehicles.

The night wasn't completely a waste though. I got to meet Ban Sun after such a long time. He seems to have put on weight ( haven't we all, heh heh ), and since he's the marketing executive of Super Komtar now ( ooooh ), he gave me a brief summary of the Star Wars toys, and managed to interest me in the trading card game. I'm still considering that - at least I might be able to get Mich C off Icewind Dale that way.

Apart from hunting for the action figures, I also checked out the CD shops for the soundtrack to 'The English Patient'. It's a bit disappointing that most CD shops these days no longer stock good original soundtracks. Music Valley, in fact, seems to be going to hell. They have more Indonesian horror VCDs than music CDs.

And finally... ooh my legs. I've forgotten the aching legs. Nevertheless, I'll probably head off to Gurney Plaza tomorrow to check out the new Toys R Us.

Saturday, May 25, 2002

We're having another one of those heat waves in Penang today. I had to wait in the car for my father this afternoon, and I ended up getting baked. It didn't matter that the aircon was on full blast or that my door was wide open,

merciless sun + hot car = well-baked driver

I'm now painfully nursing a headache, the kind which feels like something is pressing your skull inwards. I also have this pimple near my eye, which disrupts the balance of my spectacles. Okay, so it's an uncomfortable afternoon, and even Mich C is off in KL for some wedding, and my mother and my sister went off to China to see the Great Wall. I'm going to kick back and reread Timothy Zahn's Star Wars trilogy ( Heir To The Empire, Dark Force Rising and The Last Command ).

Friday, May 24, 2002

Today is Kooi Meng's last day at work. He's the guy I eat lunch with everyday, and now that he's gone, lunch will be a faster affair. People might think me odd, but here I am, typing away and playing phone-answering office secretary while everyone else is out for his farewell lunch. Even if my stomach weren't feeling so queasy, I doubt I would have gone for the lunch. We're talking about eating with a bunch of colleagues who barely acknowledge my existence. They're the reason why I have lunch everyday with Kooi Meng. I'm not complaining though. Less talk, more work done. If I spent as much time as they do goofing around, I probably would have to stay back everyday after work too.

Thursday, May 23, 2002

Star Wars Episode 2: Attack of the Clones

( spoilers ahead )
I love this movie. I really do. It's got violence. It's got death. It's got Jedi fighting hordes of droids. It's got clones ( I really need to go get my clone trooper action figure now ). It's got bounty hunters. It's got lovey-dovey scenes. It's got people dying. It's got starship battles, one-sided though that may have been. I think the movie's great. Maybe I'm the odd one out, but I don't find the acting too wooden ( most people I've spoken to told me that the acting sucked ), and the pacing was okay with me. Maybe people who watched the first midnight screening of the movie should have waited a little longer. The love scenes ( which were really just tortured conversations - I feel your pain too, Anakin ) must have seemed slow to most people at 12.45am.

The fact that this movie parallels The Empire Strikes Back tickles my prostrate.

Episode 2Episode 5
Anakin/Padme romanceHan/Leia romance
Appearance of bounty hunter Jango FettAppearance of bounty hunter Boba Fett
Yoda trains Jedi younglingsYoda trains young Jedi Luke Skywalker
Yoda goes on about people feeling pain and clouded futuresYoda goes on about people feeling pain and clouded futures
Obiwan falls off a high place ( Kamino )Luke falls off a high place ( Bespin )
Anakin has bad dreams about motherLuke has bad visions about friends
Anakin runs off to rescue motherLuke runs off to rescue friends
Jango Fett chases Obiwan in an asteroid fieldThe Empire chases the Millenium Falcon in an asteroid field
Count Dooku asks Obiwan to join him and together they'll destroy the SithDarth Vader asks Luke to join him and together they'll destroy the Emperor
C3P0 gets bodyparts messed upC3P0 gets bodyparts messed up
Padme tells Anakin she loves himLeia tells Han she loves him
Big scale ground battle ( Geonosis ) Big scale ground battle ( Hoth )
Anakin and Dooku goes one-on-one in a dark place with lightsabre illluminationLuke and Vader goes one-on-one in a dark place with lightsaber illumination
Anakin gets bodypart chopped offLuke gets bodypart chopped off
Count Dooku doesn't dieDarth Vader doesn't die
The bad guys winThe bad guys win
Final scene features Padme, Anakin, C3P0 and R2D2Final scene features Leia, Luke, C3P0 and R2D2

A lame list ( probably missed a whole lot of other things ), but I was watching the movie, not nitpicking it. I did realize that Obiwan managed to chop off somebody's hand in a bar ala Episode 4, and the "I have a bad feeling about this" phrase is heard again. It's nice to meet Owen and Beru again, and now I realize that they're REALLY Luke's uncle and aunty.

The scenery's great. Coruscant's beautiful, and the final battle between the clones and the droid army was amazing. Yoda does look digitized though, and the final scene between him and Dooku had me laughing. Mich C thought the digitized ex-Muppet was funny too, especially when he took out his lightsabre.

All in all, I love AOTC. Now bring on the DVD and Episode 3 already.

Wednesday, May 22, 2002

The project manager asked me, "Do you know how to write in Chinese?"

Having had only 1 semester's worth of Mandarin classes, I of course said "No". And then he had to go "Don't know how to write in Chinese ar?" in an obviously sarcastic tone. Well, he himself doesn't know how to write in Chinese and he dares to get sarcastic with me? Well hello? I'm not even Chinese, and that bastard obviously has a scrawny Chinese ass which deserves a hot poker stuffed up it. No wonder why the office collectively dislikes him. I used to think that maybe he was a decent guy, but I think that misconception is getting corrected.
Sometimes, reality comes crashing down on you when you realize that you're not as good as you think you are. Granted, I always think less of myself due to a lack of self-esteem, but it was still a hard knee between the legs when I opened up somebody else's sourcecode the other day and found that I did not know what I should have known. My grasp of the Java language is still flimsy at best, and my ability to think up algorithms is... er, abysmal should be the right word for it. It's depressing when I'm holding a farking degree in software engineering and I can't engineer software.

I blame a lot of things for this lack of knowledge - UM's rather lackadaisical approach to a software engineering specialization, my own lack of initiative, William von Darke because it's traditional to put blame on him anyway, Blizzard for making Diablo 2, Lucasarts for all those wonderful Star Wars games, Bioware for that damn farking Baldur's Gate franchise ( which, you know, I absolutely love ), the Simoniac for the fun of it, me again for my lack of dedication to THE ART and finally not having any peers makes it a long lonely road to software perfection.

Is there a point to all this? Is there any meaning to this short and merry life we all live? None that I can think of offhand, except that I had better really go brush up on my programming if I want to stay hired. Cause the shit is really rising to the ceiling ( bloop bloop *ugly smell as a bubble pops* ), and when it hits the fan... sigh, I'm pretty certain that I'll probably be around when that happens. Cataclysms tend to take place when I'm somewhere in the immediate vicinity.

Tuesday, May 21, 2002

Ode to Surfgode:

O Surfgode
I love your emote
You really change my mode
Into horny goat
Meh meh mehhhhh
Meh meh mehhhhh
*plays the harmonica*

This morning's Poetic Moment brought to you by Nicholas Prose.

Monday, May 20, 2002

A rake-like tool, you're used to rip the flesh off of living victims. Someone gets you angry, they -know- they're in trouble. If you're more of an argument than physical type, you'll still rip them a new one verbally.

What torture would you be?

Which Buffy Bad Guy Are You? Find out @ She's Crafty
Okay, this headache/migraine/brain-splitting whatever is NOT getting better. It subsided a little in the morning, but now it's back. With a vengeance. I feel like someone is massaging my left brain. And it's not even a nice, loving massage. It's the squeezy 'I want your brains oozing out between my fingers' kind of mindless groping. Is my brain going to pop? Die soon will I? The pulsating blood vein trick which is going on isn't amusing at all. I don't need to put my finger on my wrist to get a pulse now - all I need to do is to find that little vein on my forehead and lo, there shall be a vein which pulses along to the heartbeat! Personally, all I need to do now is to lie down and sleep the sleep of forever. Dreamless, black, eternal.
The headache/migraine/brain-splitting whatever I had last night was monumental. Measuring about 7.2 on the Richter scale, it was of the pulse-pounding, 'God I can't think let me die' variety. Not even Bruce Willis in Armageddon could help me. In fact, my body ended up going on auto, and there are still missing fragments of what I did last night after the drilling crew blasted off Earth to dig a hole in the asteroid. I can barely remember switching off the TV, taking a bath and going to bed. Oh, and a very long and dark piece of shit at the bottom of the toilet bowl which I shat out while I was in the throes of mental agony.

That wasn't the case in the morning. The post-waking up faeces were bright green, floating and decidedly chunky. This must be what they meant by short, controlled bursts. I noted that most of them sunk after awhile, although one emerged again only to disappear awhile later. Errant piece of shit, there's always one which has to be the odd one out.

At any rate, that little 'alien from Mars Attacks hears yodelling' episode of mine caused me to shut down prematurely last night, and I didn't get to call my girlfriend when she got back from her trip. Much apologies, dear :(.

Sunday, May 19, 2002

Opened up my computer, dusted a few components, took things out and put them back again a few times. Readjusted the video card. Exchanged the memory sticks around a little. And ever since that, the Clone Campaigns have yet to cause my PC to hang on me. I have to admit, this 'build a grand army of the Republic' thingy is kind of addictive. I do build grand armies, but usually grand armies of the Empire. So much more fun to have AT-ATs walking around the place.

Saturday, May 18, 2002

It's another one of those Chauffeur Brother Saturday mornings. I got to wake up early to fetch my sister to the foot of Penang Hill, where she'll be going up later with her friends to ride bicycles at the top. Kids these days, they do the strangest things. We also got to eat breakfast at one of the coffeeshops in Farlim before I dropped her off, the one with the oyster porridge. Quite a decent breakfast, although I was pretty unhappy with the economy bee hoon ( way too expensive ) and the eu char koay ( bought from a stall outside the neighbouring coffeeshop, it tasted weird ). Now I'm all blurry, having gone through yet another late night last night due to me walking all over the Rebel Alliance with my AT-AT walkers in Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds.

Friday, May 17, 2002

Anyone seen the Star Wars Episode 2 action figures around yet? I have yet to watch the movie ( probably next Wednesday ), but I already know that I just need to have my very own 3.75 inch clone trooper. And maybe Amidala. I think Anakin looks lame, but the Mandalorian Armour has always looked good, so I'll get Jango Fett if I can find him too. You too can be part of the crazy rush to buy Star Wars toys. Just click on 'Search the Product Index' to see a listing of the action figures. But you know, what I really want are Micro Machines Episode 2 spacecraft miniatures. They'll be so cool to bring around everywhere in my pocket. And if they ever release a small Micro Machines Slave 1, I'll buy it just so that I can bring it out and bug people in my office when I'm bored.
Gegegegege. It's Friday morning! It's the beginning of the rest of my life for the rest of the week ( read: weekend ), and if the management and the top project guys are still not back today... *does a little cha-cha-cha*. Not that I'm about to shirk my responsibilities. Cause everyone knows that with unlimited Internet access comes great responsibility ( that'll be NOT using company resources to build an epic porn collection on my office workstation ), so I'll probably be slaving away at boring lines of code. I generally find code boring. But every now and then I get this really amazing snippet of code which is something of a revelation to me? And then I have to try not to notice when people in the office start giving me weird looks as I collectively drool and have an erection.

Of course, I'm still interested in all the usual puerile entertainment.

Thursday, May 16, 2002

There are many ways I can die. A blaze of glory as my out-of-control car smashes into your friendly neighbourhood Shell station. Falling off the 10th floor of a tall building. Falling off the 18th floor of a tall building. Falling off the 26th floor of a tall building. Caught in the blast of a gamma explosion. Spirit of dead baby possessing my body and then drowning me in the office toiletbowl. Dying of thirst in the office. The possibilities are endless. And today, I just added One More Way To Die to my evergrowing list:

Electrocuted by the button I push to open the office door.

The damn thing's been giving me brief little shocks every time my fingers brush pass the two screws which hold it to the wall. I get a little more electricity in my body everytime I press that button to open the door. It's like this office isn't earthed properly. I'll try to stay alive and see which idiot manages to kill himself with the door button first.
I find it intriguing what constant late nights do to me. My state of mind has deteriorated, I can barely keep awake past 10am and I really have no idea what's going on around me. One could say that my environmental awareness has been reduced to zero. My boss could walk in behind me now and instead of alt-tabbing to some other application, I'll probably just keep on typing here. It's not that my company forbids blogging ( I suppose it's okay as long as people are not really aware of what you're doing ) - it's just an indication of how far down oblivion my mind has fallen.

I need to hibernate. Desperately. In a nice warm cozy cave far away from civilization. Preferably one which is not inhabited by anything dangerous ( like a big black bear, perhaps ). Hibernation is good. Hibernation is your friend.

Wednesday, May 15, 2002

Late night after late night has resulted in this. I can barely keep my eyes open. Not even Starbucks can save me from falling from my chair towards the sweet carpetted oblivion which is the floor. STRONG! I must be STRONG! But it's so hard when your eyelids feel as heavy as a woman nine months into her pregnancy. And it's not like my mind wants to cooperate. All I want to do now is to curl up in a corner and hibernate. 8.20pm seems so far away.
Yay yay! My girlfriend's coming back from China today!
*does a cartwheel, loses balance, crashes into boss, boss flies out of the window down 26th floors*

That's celebration for you!

Tuesday, May 14, 2002

Today, the esteemed Saw Yuen Meng revealed to me that contrary to what I believe, everyone has bad days every now and then. Now, I'm aware of that fact in a subconscious kind of way, but consciously, I tend to believe that only I - YES, I, THE AMAZING NICHOLAS PROSE - have bad days. There's this nagging thing in my head that keeps insisting that everybody else is happy, that I should go grab a keyboard and bludgeon them all with it till they're as miserable as me ( or dead, whichever comes first ). So there I was this morning, feeling down depressed suicidal, resigned to yet another dreary day of monotonous work. Then Saw informed me of the general grouchiness of the human race, and now I'm feeling much better, but still resigned to yet another dreary day of monotonous work.

The idea that everyone is generally unhappy really tickles my prostrate. It makes me a human of the human race and not a race apart, as initially suspected. It gives me a sense of belonging. It makes me... one of us. Okay everybody! Group hug! Group hug!

Oops. Yesterday was CoolChique's birthday. No, I didn't forget about it. Just that I thought she wanted it to be a hush-hush thingy. Apparently, the poor thing's so worried about work she didn't really have time to enjoy it. I note her 'devastated' imood, and wonder just how bad her workload is. Advice to the overworked / work-obsessed: That way lies burnout, and to a lesser extent, madness.

Monday, May 13, 2002

Peace. Calm. Tranquility. For anger leads to the Dark Side. And that way lies madness. And probably lots of years in prison. We could be talking life. Or *shudder* whipping! And let us not forget what they do to young guys in prison! I could be somebody's bitch! And if I live through all that, I could go to Hell and be Satan's bitch! *I* don't want that!

No, wait. This isn't where I was initially going with this. Bah. It's back to building worlds for me. Retire that butcher knife, Prosey. We're creators, not destroyers. This killing thingy is just not me. Damnit I can't even be a serial killer if I wanted to.
Family can be horrible sometimes. I took the trouble to come home early so that I can get the housework out of the way. I dumped the clothes into the washing machine and then took them out to hang. I folded all the clothes. All this in time to watch Farscape at 9pm and Boston Public at 10pm. Which was okay. I was done long before 8pm came along. I was prepared, okay. I was all jazzed up. I was ready.

And then my uncle, my aunty and my cousin, who was supposed to come by yesterday afternoon, decided to drop by TONIGHT. They took up the hall, and my hall, being not too big, was kind of overpopulated. Can I say a word about it? No. So here I am, seething away in my room. Listening to the soundtrack of The Talented Mr. Ripley. Gabriel Yared's haunting music, along with the occasional jazz number, is slowly easing me towards the edge. I'm farking frustrated and pissed off here. Is watching one of the scifi series which I've waited for so long TOO FARKING MUCH TO ASK FOR? I'm in my OWN GODDAMNED HOUSE here and I CAN'T EVEN WATCH THE FARKING TV!
During lunch today, I managed to embed a little fishbone into my upper gums. Usually that won't be a problem - a little tonguework is enough to take it out - but this one is small, and the whole bastard went in. The WHOLE thing. No amount of natural coaxing will be able to take this one out. In fact, I can't even feel it with my tongue. Yet I can feel it in my gums, annoying me. It's either time for some minor surgery ("Open wide, Mr. Prose.") or I'll just bear the suffering for the rest of my life. I wonder if it'll cause my gums to rot. Then I'll have worms crawling around my mouth. Yucks, the very thought. But hey, at least I'll be a riot at parties.

Me: Hey kids, wanna see something cool?
Little 5-year-old kids: Yes! Yes, Uncle Prosey! Pleeeeeeease!
Me: AAAARGH! ( opens mouth, worms stick out from festering pus-filled gums, children scream and run away )
Me: Heh heh heh... *munches on a wandering worm*
Early Monday morning ( as in the '1am damnit I have work tomorrow' kind of morning ) is probably quite late for a week in review summary, but what the heck. Better late than never in this case, right? So here we go:
  • Spider-Man:
    Nobody knows you are
    Nobody knows who you are.

    'Nuff said.
  • Personal style:
    I must have missed this one out, but once again, I had a haircut and now look like the space marine from Doom. Certain people might not approve of this randy hairstyle though.
  • Love of my Life:
    Yup, for one whole week my girlfriend will be in China. She'll be back this Wednesday ( whee! ).
  • The Y-Files:
    Crying babies in deserted office stairwells always evoke a creepy feeling. This could be promising but seriously, I wouldn't want a baby looking in on me shitting out last night's Big Mac in the office toilet, spiritual visitation or not.
  • Buffy/Angel:
    Dawn, Buffy's younger sister, appears in Buffy Season 5 Episode 2. She's SO sweet. Meanwhile in LA, Angel and company destroys the demon residing in the Hyperion Hotel, effectively gaining them a new base of operations.
  • Office Gossip:
    Believe it or not, my bosses weren't in the whole of last week. It was indeed a most relaxing week at work ( relatively ). This coming week, however, promises new terrors and horrors as upper management returns to bring pain and misery to us underlings.
  • The ShitLodeant Front:
    Darke travels to Switzerland for cheese. Nael celebrates his 24th birthday. de Simoniac changes blog colours, and borrows Jedi Knight 2 and Spectre of the Black Rose from me. Cess Darke joins the blogging community, and alters her template to be one of the better ones I've seen. Babgafa, sadly, is still stranded in Thailand.
All right. Enough with the nostalgia already. Let's bring on THIS week.

Sunday, May 12, 2002

It's a hot, hot Sunday. I suppose most afternoons, the sunny ones at least, are hot. Working in an air-conditioned office has really shielded me from the sun. Once, I used to walk home from school everyday, braving sun, rain, exhaust and the occasional bus out to run down pedestrians. Now, I start melting after two minutes under that big ball of fire, and go on to suffer heat exhaustion for the rest of the day. This lack of heat tolerance isn't something which I like. It irks me that my sedentary lifestyle is no longer punctuated by short periods of intense physical activity under a blazing sun. I'll probably live longer this way ( if I don't die of sitting or something equally obscure first ), but this isn't the right way to live out life. Those old days of yore when I risked skin cancer daily may have been hazardous to my health in the long run, but they opened up my sweat pores daily and probably made me a stronger person physically too.

Saturday, May 11, 2002

I got to watch Spider-Man again last night when my sister dragged me to the cinema to watch it with her. Now, she wants to read Spider-Man comics. So instead of getting tons of back issues of the older Spider-Man comics eg. Amazing, Spectacular, etc., I decided to ask Bernard to get the Ultimate Spider-Man trade paperbacks for me. Because my little sister likes books ( so she can wrap them up nicely in plastic ). I suppose a TPB every few months is much better than having to maintain yet another title monthly. Which really makes me wonder: Can the Spider-Man movie, being such a great success, bring in a whole new generation of comic book readers? It did get my sister interested, which is probably something of a miracle. Perhaps there is still hope for comicdom. I did read somewhere that these days, most comic readers come from an older age category.

For comics in Penang, go to Splash-Page Comics. Ask for Bernard or Leo.

Friday, May 10, 2002

This somehow slipped my mind earlier - I only recalled it when I went to the toilet again not too long ago. Earlier before lunch, I went to the restroom to wash my face. It's at the end of the corridor, just next to the stairwell. Everyone on one floor shares the same restroom ( well, we have one for the men and another for the women ). So there I was, dazedly wandering down the corridor when I heard a baby crying. From the stairwell. It wasn't any of those temperature-lowering incidents, just the sound of a normal baby crying. Being not fully conscious, I thought that the stairwell was haunted, so I went about my business. After I was done with my face, the crying was still going on. Now I'm no great fan of listening to babies crying - supernatural or otherwise - so I just wandered back to my office.

In retrospect, the sound could have come from the hotel which is just behind the office block. Then again, maybe not. Perhaps there really was a baby in the stairwell. Or maybe - hopefully - it really was something else. Time will tell.
Certain facts about my current CTO were disclosed over lunch today. Disturbing facts. No, he's not gay. Or at least that wasn't mentioned. No... he's one badass manager who can - and probably will - tear into you if you should look at him the wrong way. It's worse if you dare cross him. Making him unhappy is a very bad idea, because he swings from happy to angry without giving you the buffer space of being 'unhappy', 'disappointed' or even just plain 'pissed'. Do I work in a troubled environment? Yes, I think I do. There's rebellion in the air - a really disquieting feeling that everyone might just resign at the same time - although I'm generally avoided by everybody because I'm the new guy who can't speak the lingua franca ( read: Hokkien ) as well as the rest. Don't you just love adversity? I hear it builds character.
Presenting Cess Darke, starring in her very own sordid blog at Frosty The Icy Snowflake! Here's hoping for rants from her!

Here I am sitting staring at my almost empty bottle of Tiger Balm. Tiger Balm - the universal ointment. It's supposed to be a world famous topical pain relieving ointment. I think I'm addicted to it. Nothing like stuffing some Tiger Balm into your nose, sniffing hard and letting the acridly sweet scent go all the way up to your nose. It's a bit like eating Japanese mustard ( damned wasabe ), except that you don't have to deal with that horrible taste. Oh, and it combines with Fisherman's Friend to give the bored senseless a rather novel experience. For the ultimate in 'The Prosian Burning Throat Sensation':

1) Stick yourself into an air-conditioned room for awhile - the colder the better.
2) Lace your nose with Tiger Balm.
3) Pop a Fisherman's Friend - Sugar Free Lemon is my favourite for this.
4) Drink chilled water.

The results are rather kinky, as my good friend Chris ( of Bentong fame ) will attest to. The first ( and last ) time I tricked him into trying that back in our Linux lab, he ran out of the cold room with a burning throat. Wimp ( heh heh, bet you don't read this, Chris ). Me, it gets me high, and wakes me up. Cheaper than alcohol, and more useful too. Unless I'm in terrible pain, in which case just drown me in whisky and call the coroner already.

By the way, if this kills you, don't come haunting me for the rest of my life. I really dislike the idea of someone being constantly beside me, especially when I'm peeing. It disrupts my tranquility, and the urine just refuses to come out.

Thursday, May 09, 2002

Oh look, I found a good picture of Von Darke's ancestor, Captain William Darke. Here's the writeup on the good Captain:

"Captain Darke, who lived near Duffields in present-day Jefferson County, fought in the Revolutionary War, served in the state convention which approved the U.S. Constitution in 1788, and commanded a Virginia regiment in the Northwest Territory."

I'm only posting this now because:

1) Von Darke is lost somewhere in Switzerland with ( hopefully no Internet access ).
2) I'm betting he won't read the archives when he gets back.
Rainy mornings have a high suckiness level when you have to go to work.The cold usually sends me off into a deep, deep sleep, making me feel like a corpse when it's time to wake up and go to work. It was SO HARD to drag myself out of the bed this morning. The mind refused to work, the muscles weren't cooperating and all I could say to my sister when she started to poke me awake with a ruler was "Wha? Ime oo ake ar?". At least the traffic on the road wasn't so bad in the town area. Granted, it was rather wet, but your car won't skid unless you start going fast or pull off stupid stunts.

Wednesday, May 08, 2002

Dinner last night was a splendid buffet at Shangri-La's coffee house. Value Night buffets are RM30 per head, and I think I ate more than RM30 last night. So much has changed since a long time ago when I was a young kid, guzzling down helping after helping of food, each plate piled high with steaming meat. These days, I pick my food carefully. The general strategy I apply to every buffet is to first taste out everything available. Once that is done, I go in for the things I found delightful to the tastebuds. But I never - ever - pile up food anymore. It's strange, but I used to be able to eat so much more last time. Before, it was the standard three full plates before I wobbled off to the dessert table - nowadays, it's three to four sparsely inhabitated plates before the urge to raid the cakes and ice cream hits me. Ah, those old days were grand.

Dessert, however, is still probably the best thing about a buffet. I simply adore freezing ice cream on top of steaming hot bread pudding, with some chocolate mousse on top of everything. It's a good thing that I have buffets at most once every six months now.

Tuesday, May 07, 2002


Von Darke leaves Edinburgh, and the forces of darkness move south.

This update brought to you by DarkeICQ.
Today marks Nael's 24th birthday.
Curry puffs and Coke make for a good lunch. I wanted to go out for lunch with my colleagues today, but I was feeling SO sleepy and tired that I just had to take a half hour nap. Anyway, I wasn't feeling hungry when they went out. In fact, I felt bloated and full at that time. However, I was ravenous when I woke up. It's incredible what napping for awhile can do to your appetite.

Newsflash from Scotland:
Wilhelm von Darke is going away to Switzerland to experience the cheese, deposit some illegal money into the bank there, tinker with the cuckoo clocks and maybe even be a cuckoo himself. He is never coming back, and since we're never seeing him again, here's an ode to him:

Give me the power
Give me the dark
I call on you, the laughing gods
Let your blackness crawl beneath my skin
Accept thy sacrifice of de Simoniac
Feed on him.

Hmm... that doesn't sound right. Must be some demon incantation or something. Oh well *shrug*. No one believes in spells anymore anyway right? We're all going to miss von Darke tremendously, seeing that he is never to be seen again. And just so you know, he'll be back in Scotland in approximately two weeks' time. So don't fret.
I read my excretion this morning. The floating peanuts told me that my peanut binge last night was a bad, bad idea. No wonder why I felt like I was giving birth to little round things through my rectum when I was shitting. Apparently, I should have chewed the peanuts more before swallowing them. There were actually completely whole peanuts in the toiletbowl above the rather soft faeces which had sunk to the bottom. Anyway, after reading the shit for a little while after the initial act ( it's a necessary shaman thingy ), I wandered off for cheap espresso and breakfast. When I came back, I realized that I had forgotten to flush, the sunken faeces has floated up to the top and the whole toilet was filled with this deviously subtle nutty smell.

And what did my excreta tell me this slow sleepy morning? It told me about de Simoniac, and how he was going to end up an alcoholic. I was doubtful, of course. The man might be a drinker, but he knew how to control himself, and anyway he just drank for fun. I thought that the nuts were complicating the reading. And then I read about de Simoniac's latest problem-solving solution, and I realized that the reading might be accurate after all.

In shit, truth.
I have this rather stubborn white hair sticking out of my head. It's pretty solitary, standing out all by itself. It's long. It's curly. It's white. It's like white pubic hair. It's pretty disturbing. People stare at my head a lot nowadays. I don't wonder why anymore.

Monday, May 06, 2002

Dropped my girlfriend off today at the airport because she's flying off to China for a week and a day. It's absurd - she just came back not two weeks ago and now she's off again. Oh the agony! The solitude! Never mind, I'll just go flick the computer on and go be morose online. Oh wait. That's already done. Gah. I'll just bitch about the weather then. It's wet. I think the days of the week agreed that Monday's evenings should be extremely miserable for everybody. Just to drill in the point that Mondays are sucky into everybody's mind. To make my way from the area near Gurney Drive to the Bayan Baru area, I had to traverse submerged roads, infinite traffic jams, homicidal drivers, abandoned shortcuts and control the beast within me. Yes, if anyone's wondering, I nearly went down to kill a few people. Of course, it was all worth it, if only that I got to see my girlfriend before she goes globehopping for a week. Oh look, it's time again to go flick the computer on and go be morose online. Oh wait. I'm doing that already *doh*.
The espresso - cheap espresso - kept me up last night. I thought it was just another cup of coffee. Little did I know that I would still be up at 2.30am searching for CDs on the Internet. Pity my father too, who tried a cup himself. HE was up until 4am, watching boxing on Astro. Drinkers beware - no matter how cheap they are, certain variants of espresso can still keep you up. My father will be sticking to his mocha from now on, and I've finally found something cheap and easy to make to keep me awake. Now all I need is something to put me to sleep.

Sunday, May 05, 2002

Today in BJC, me and Mich C bumped into Pei Ling and gang ( some of my ex-colleagues from eBX ). It's nice seeing them again - Chow Ghee seems to have gotten a haircut since I last saw him and Mei Ching looks prettier without her glasses and that 'constantly on the edge' look. However, the little reunion we had in the giftshop near the ATM machines was very awkward. I don't know, it felt like some badly rehearsed local drama series. Everyone was jerky and hesitant, so much so that I started wondering if my hair ( bad bad hair day, everything was everywhere ) was disturbing them. Mich C pointed out that maybe it's because they haven't seen me in ages. And there was like five of them and two of us. At any rate, it was nice seeing them again before they go their separate paths, all mostly going south after eBX cruelly decided not to confirm them and fire them instead. And Pei Ling finally got to meet my girlfriend and vice versa, so that's an added plus.
The Peer-To-Peer Review Project for blogs is finally done, and you can read all the blog reviews here. My review of Bedazzle is also there. However, my blog wasn't reviewed. The person who was supposed to review this blog probably never got down to it for some reason or another. I'm both relieved and disappointed. Relieved, because at least I don't have to read criticism about something I write daily. Disappointed, because I was pretty much looking forward to the review. It's different when some other person you don't know reviews you - not based on what he/she/it knows about you, but based on what you write.

But hey. It's over. IT'S ALL OVER. And you know what? If no one wants to review this blog, it's OKAY. Cause *I* want to review *YOUR* blog! Ha. Ha ha. Ha ha ha. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Bring on Round Two of the peer-to-peer review project already.
And Saturday was MARVEL day. First was Spiderman the movie. I would like to make it clear at this point that I love the costume. It's authentic. They didn't revamp it to be another X-Men the movie leather fetish club costume. They didn't use the black Spiderman costume ( Venom suit ) either. They stuck to the original costume. And that kind of made the movie worth it after the costume disappointment which was X-Men. The plot was good. Once again, they stuck quite closely to the original origin of Spiderman ( the wrestling gig et al ), and I did get a little twinge in my heart when Spidey went after the robber/carjacker responsible for driving in the 'with great power comes great responsibility' issue. Kirsten was pretty, Tobey was IMHO perfect as Peter Parker ( such eyes ) and the guy who did Jameson was HILARIOUS. I thought the Daily Bugle scenes were really great. I liked the way the romance between Pete and MJ was developed too - the upside-down kiss in the dark alley was classic Spidey.

A few gripes though. The Green Goblin's costume was real crappy. Utter yucks. It looked more like a hard shell than the original costume in the comics. And the helmet... urgh. The mouth was permanently open. Hey, I didn't know the Green Goblin has his own comic. Oh, and they should have gotten a thinner Aunt May, and made Peter more respectful of his uncle and aunty. I know we live in more cynical times, but I just couldn't connect with this rather ambivalent-towards-elders Peter Parker. Also, what was with the non-existent web-shooters and the genetically engineered spider? Everything fit into the movie very nicely, but it's almost blasphemous to turn poor Peter into a real pseudo spider.

All in all, I like Spiderman the movie. I really do. I just don't love it. It didn't blow me away. Not that it's a bad movie or anything. Oh no, it's a rather good watch, and I was rather sorry when the ride ended. But a part of me just wishes that it could have been more. Maybe I'm really getting old.

And so that was for the movies. On the comic end, we have Iron Man #54. The Mandarin's dead, but his son's pretty reluctant to take up his father's rings and just go kill the Armored Avenger. Meanwhile, a near(?) girlfriend of Tony Stark ( he met her when his plane got shot down behind enemy lines in #50 or so ) is back from the dead. Apparently, she never died, but she wants to. Tony refuses to kill her, and she's off to make life real difficult for the people Tony cares for. A bit of a soap opera, now that I'm reading what I just wrote, but the execution in this issue is rather good. I like Iron Man. He's a bit of the Batman of the Marvel Universe ( indecently rich and very smart ), sans heavy psychological issues. The plot in this title is improving dramatically - it's so meaty, I'm going to drop Sojourn because Iron Man makes all other titles I read just way too short.

Now, for the highlight of the day: Captain America #1.

I've always like Cap. Back when I was younger, it was the shield. A shield that can deflect bullets and comes back after you've thrown it is real cool. Now that I'm older, I'm in for what Cap stands for. Just a man trying to do the right thing. And with this new run of Captain America, I believe that we might see Cap dealing with some real difficult issues. Any comic which features the WTC tragedy and the title hero's frustration at being too late to save his countrymen in the first issue has real potential to go far. I've read Captain America #1. And I think it rocks.

That wraps it up for Marvel Saturday. On a sidenote, I also got Ravenloft: Denizens of Darkness along with the abovementioned comics, and I played Icewind Dale for my girlfriend all the way up to the second level of Kresselack's tomb without returning to Kuldahar once. Not even to refill ranged weapon ammunition! Whee!

And I can't wait for the clones to attack ( heavy breathing ala Darth Vader ).

Saturday, May 04, 2002

At that moment, I was ready to plunge my pen into Eric's eye and give him a lobotomy. Phoay Phoay was supposed to start screaming bloody murder, Kian Lee was supposed to rush me and knock me down while Rosie would frantically dial up the police. I was that close to losing it.

And then the farking server next to me started rattling.

I'm not talking about 'irritatingly annoying on the border of your consciousness yet still bearable' rattling. I'm talking full-out 'end of the world this CPU is gonna blow and take you and the whole 26th floor to hell with it' kind of rattling. Everyone looked at me and Mr. Server Gonna Blowup, and my blood froze. It was a bad moment on a bad day, granted. One of those 'Oh God I think the server next to me is gonna blow' shocks. And it put life into perspective again.

I needn't try to get myself killed. Enough people out there are already trying to put me into the ground. I should be putting them into the ground.

Look out, world.

Friday, May 03, 2002

I'm pissed.
I'm angered.
I'm sad.
I'm homicidal.
I'm sorrowful.
I'm frustrated.
I'm psychopathic.
I'm wrathful.
I'm confused.
I'm depressed.
I'm losing it.

Thursday, May 02, 2002

Signs indicating that one is gearing up for Star Wars Episode 2: The Attack Of The Clones:
  1. Listening to the soundtrack of Episode 2 EVERYDAY.
  2. Digging out old Star Wars first person shooters.
  3. Buying Jedi Knight 2 knowing fully well the current computer can't handle it... and refused to play the game on lowered detail because doing so would 'cheapen the experience'.
  4. Mailing a death threat to Gregory North demanding back Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds ( after telling him he could keep it earlier ).
  5. Getting all worked up over the Clone Campaigns expansion.
  6. Racing Micro Machines Pod Racers all over the room ( vroom vroom! ).
  7. Looking into the reflective door of the lift this morning and seeing a dark, helmeted visage ( ah... clouded by the Dark Side the future is ::cue the Imperial March:: ).

Wednesday, May 01, 2002

What is it with Labour Day? Lunch near BJC today was complicated by a really packed multi-storey car park. I had to park somewhere near the top. BJC itself, though, didn't look too packed. I wonder where everyone was, given that Cosmart was not full of people either. Oh well. Small mysteries of life. At any rate, Happy May, everybody.