Sunday, September 18, 2005

Cars in Australia

Well, I was looking through my photos that I took while I was in Brisbane to put on Friendster and I came across a few cars that I took while I was at Ekka in August 2003. Basically the Ekka is a fair that celebrates everything Queensland from farm animals, to the agricultural sector to the automotive industry.

I stumbled across the Holden Monaro, which is basically the 3rd generation of this model. It's also known as the Pontiac GTO in the States. Also known as the CV8, this 3rd generation of the Monaro comes with a 5.7 liter V8 engine. I was relating this story to my uncle in Ipoh and he informed me that before I was born my dad had a Holden Torana, which was a 1972 model with 3.3 liter block. Now I know where my passion for fast cars comes from. Too bad I'm more into forced induction, sorry dad.

The two Monaros that you see below are basically the GTO and the CV8-R. Both share the same engine, which outputs about 320bhp. The CV8-R on the other hand is a limited edition for 2003. Only 350 units were produced. I still recall the time when I stopped at the traffic lights and saw this bright Green Monaro with a boost meter on his A-Pillar. That time I was driving my 180SX and thought I'd just catch his attention to see what he really has under his hood. I gave the throttle a little push on idle and my blow-off valve just hissed when I let go. It caught the driver's attention and he jsut gave a grin and stepped on his car's throttle. All I heard was a loud rumble from his exhaust and followed immediately by a "Pshhhhhhhhh" from a blow off valve unit.

Mental note, do no piss off V8 drivers... and DO NOT mess with V8 turbos!

I just looked away, feeling really ashamed. Next thing I knew the lights turned green and all I saw was a cloud of white smoke. The bugger did a burnout in front of me and I could not even see his tailights.

Now back to the other two cars, the Mitsubishi Magna Ralliart edition and the 350Z. The Magna is based on Mitsubishi's Gallant chasis and the Magna is only limited to Australia. It's basically considered a local car there and they decided to throw in some interesting bits for the Ralliart edition. I've always fancied anything Ralliart but this edition was quite dissapointing. It came with an Evo 6 look-alike bodykit, the wing and all but the performance was still a 3.0 V6. Nothing to shout about in the performance department. The engine was stock, no MIVEC or any form of forced induction. Dull!

Now the 350Z, sigh, is probably the most beautiful sports car ever to come out from the land of the rising sun. Keep in mind that this was released in 2003 and it was the first edition. I've recently seen the Nismo version in KL and it looks a little more menacing with the race strips and all. The latest model to come out of Japan is the 350Z 35th anniversary edition, which revs all the was to the 7,000 rpm mark. The first edition only had till about 6,400 rpm and it ran out of breath around the 6,000 region. This car really has the right curves in all the right places. Sigh... if only I could afford one.

Apparently Nismo has also produced a 350Z in Japan, where they transplanted an RB26 DET engine from the R34 GTR. Turbo power! They matched it with a sequential 6-speed transmission and it's just unbelievable!

Monaro CV8-R

Monaro Posted by Picasa

Monaro GTO Posted by Picasa

Magna Ralliart Posted by Picasa

350Z Posted by Picasa

Friday, September 09, 2005


Well, you guessed it... the show is all about marijuana, the ganja, the hemp plant, the herb, grass and most common street name, Weed. This is probably the most hyped about plant debated over the senate on legalizing it as a medicinal drug. Now, why can't they do that here?

This show is brilliant! Just when DH (Desperate Housewives) is filling up the void left by Sex and the City, I personally prefer Weeds over DH any day. Both are dark comedies and similar in a way. The shows involve the life of mothers, single or married, going about their everyday lives. Only one involves the controversial drug.

Basically Weeds stars Mary-Louise Parker as Nancy Botwin, a single mother struggling to make ends meet by selling marijuana. It is set in a fictional town called Agrestic based in California. Fortunately for her, she has a whole list of clients in this small community. So, would this ever make it to our shores in Malaysia? I think not!

Now she gets totally creative in one of the episodes after visiting this place called Bodhi Sativa. Call it the legal drug joint selling everything related to the hemp plant. This place was created to help people with marijuana, for medication purposes, or so they say. When I say everything I mean everything! From plants where you can smoke, to edibles, to hash oils and hemp oils. All this is made legal as they operate under the Health and Safety code 11362.5. The only catch is that this place Xerox your driver's license and puts the name of the 'users' in a state control databank.

After visiting this place she finds out that the product that she's been pushing low quality product. She goes back to her supplier and asks for some of the high quality stuff. Now she learns to take her trade to a whole new level. It's one thing being creative but putting marijuana into popcorn balls, and into a ? Now this is what I would call value-added services!

So far, after 5 episodes since the premier I am totally hooked on the series!

Weeds Posted by Picasa

Mary-Louise Parker Posted by Picasa

Mary-Louise Parker Posted by Picasa

Weeds Posted by Picasa

Monday, September 05, 2005

Bittersweet Life

It's been some time since I've written anything here. My work schedule right now for the moment is just crazy. I have to start work at 7am these days, but thankfully it's just for another week. This is because I'm based in KL at the moment but will be going back to my company's HQ next week.

Now, back to this show. Now I've seen a fair share of Korean shows but this is one cool film. The film talks about the main character Sunwoo (Lee Byung Hun in the pics)who works in hotel as a manager. But the only difference is that he also doubles as an enforcer for the mob who runs the hotel. In the opening scene Sunwoo is seen have a piece of dark chocolate cake and someone tells him that there's trouble in the hotel. He goes on to finishing his cake and proceeds to go get the job done. He gets one of his men to join him and walks right into the room where three men sit and refused to leave even if it's after hours. Sunwoo walks in, asks the men politely to leave as the place is closing. He counts to three and still they refused. Sunwoo proceeds to tell his henchman to lock the door and in the following scenes he proceeds to kick the living daylights out of the three goons.

Basically the film talks about the life of Sunwoo, as an enforcer for the mob. He works for a powerful mobster named Kang who entrusts him to take care of his young girlfriend while he's away in Shanghai for 3 days. Kang also wants Sunwoo to find out if the young lady is cheating on him as he suspects that she has a young man hanging out with her all of the time. Kang gives Sunwoo the option of calling him directly when he finds out or taking care of them as he sees fit. Sunwoo ends up getting soft as he's fallen for the young girl and ends up letting them live when he finds out that she was really having an affair. He makes a deal with her telling her that she is to never see the guy again and for that he'll let them live.

Kang comes back and finds out about what has happened. Sunwoo is eventually dropped from Kang's favourite list and gets beaten up by an opposing mob gang. As he was about to be slaugthered at a meat house, Kang gives the call and tells the opposing gang to return him. Sunwoo is delivered to Kang who eventually asks him why he betrayed him. Sunwoo does not answer and Kang gives the order to bury him alive.

One cool part of the film was when Sunwoo was driving and while sticking to the speed limit, a bunch of young hoons in a Hyundai coupe tails him and high beams him. They accelerate and pull up alongside and they taunt him and honk at him. Sunwoo continued to ignore them and they continue shouting at him and showing him obscene signs while flicking cigarettes at his car window. They get tired of that and speed off. Sunwoo keeps his cool throughout the whole ordeal and when they sped off he chases after them. Now this time he pulls up beside them and eventually overtakes them and slams the brakes after he gets ahead of them forcing them to stop. They get out and before they had an opportunity to act he kicks on in the head, and the other in stomach. The third guy who was slow in getting out of a coupe had the worst fate as he was closest to the car. He smacks him silly and smashes the head on the car's window. He proceeds to pulling out the car keys and throws it into the ocean. All this without saying a single word and he drives off after that.

One cool show, and really worth watching. One of the better Korean films that I've watched and "Shibal" is really becoming my favourite word. Nice! Though to be brutally honest, I would have prefer a different ending. The film was pulled off very well but the ending really didn't suit it.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Bittersweet Life  Posted by Picasa

Bittersweet Life Posted by Picasa