Saturday, June 30, 2007

Michelle's Last Day

Yesterday was Michelle's last day. I still remember the day when we all joined FedEx together. It was back in 8/8/05. There we were, the five of us, Michelle, Franco, Cheryl, Sam and myself. I still remember the four of us were waiting in one of the meeting rooms and Michelle was no where to be seen. After Joyce came in to greet us, she started to ask if we've seen Michelle. Seeing that no one has heard of Michelle as it was the first day, Joyce started calling her cell. She was actually in the waiting room next door.

I still remember that Michelle told us that she would not last here for more than a year. Everyday facing tough customers was already a tough task, here we were facing Singapore customers who were known as the toughest market that we face out of the 4 countries that we were serving here in KL. Who would've thought she lasted for almost two years. Another month and it'll be our 2 years anniversary working with FedEx. Cheryl was the first to leave last year and now it was Michelle's turn. She'll be leaving us to become a taukehsoh, a.k.a. lady boss in Hokkien, of her own business. Good for her! She's running a daycare centre for babies. If customers were tough now, it'll be tougher for her in the future. Any parent would know that a baby is the most precious thing in the world. Anything happens to the kid, and you'll be facing a big lawsuit.

Here's wishing Michelle all the best in her business venture. Congratulations!

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Complaints on Xenon bulbs

So in light of all the new regulation that the Road Transport Department (RTD) is implementing, HID lights a.k.a. Xenons are illegal First they say all Xenon lights were banned, but after a little ruckus caused by automakers such as BMW and Mercedes, the RTD has once again decided to rephrase their statement by saying that it is only illegal if it has been retrofitted. The argument was to their limited knowledge was that Xenon lights were only meant for projector styled headlamps.

Now, most of the later cars come with projector style headlamps. Don't believe? Take a look at most of the German cars, BMWs, Mercedes, VW and so on, all come with projector styled headlamps. That's because most of the automakers from Germany have taken their automobile lighting to the next step. Even our Proton Waja and Satria Neo has incorporated projector styled headlamps into the car.

Now, with the projector styled headlamps, it only has a single concentrated beam which does not have the glare effect. Now, the Japanese manufactures on the other hand have retrofitted their headlamps using glare shields that we normally find on the H4 halogen bulb. The H4 is the most commonly found bulb and it has both low beam and high beam incorporated in one bulb. If you look closely, only the low beam has the glare shield built into the bulb glass casing. That's the root cause of the complaints on Xenon bulbs, those China made ones did not have the glare shielding.

So, if you take a look at the latest 2.0 Honda Civic, Nissan X-trail and the new Nissan Latio's headlight designs. All these cars do not use projector style headlights. Instead, there is a cover built in front of the bulb. So, the million dollar question now is will the RTD still fault them because of this? It's still being retrofitted, but they're doing in the factory.

This bunch of people have so many issues on their hands and now they are opening a whole new can of worms. Instead, the RTD should be coming up with new regulations to give the accessory workshops a guideline on what bulbs are approved and what are not. I believe those new Xenon bulbs with glare shields should be approved as they are built to be retrofitted into headlights that have no glareshield.

These morons are taking a step backward in the evolution of street lighting. The halogen bulbs are a thing of the past. They are dim, they suck a lot more watts and they really heat up the headlight covers. With the new headlights being built from plastic, the heat causes it to dull and some turn yellow. Won't that be even worst in the long run? Accidents could happen because of the dimly lit roads and with corroding headlights, you can barely see the road. Who are we to blame? The regulatory authories, namely RTD.

The new Xenon gas bulbs light up at a lower heat temperature and produces more illumination. What are the cons in that? With the proper glareshields, there should be no problems with glaring and yes I'd agree those with the 7,500K lights, those should be banned as the whitish blue lighting can be irritating.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Optimus with style!

Now, all of you from the late 80's era, would recall the most talked about cartoon, the Transformers. Back then, this was the only reason why we wanted to go home on time. Not to play games, not to play sports or go for tuition, it was just to catch the Transformers in action. It started with the Autobots, then Decepticons and expanded on from there. It was a simple story line and it really captivated all of us till today. Who would have thought that a movie would be made. Well, we all know the Transformers movie, but this one was in real life. For the first time, we could see Optimus Prime in the flesh... or steel as you may call it.

He's lost a bit of his old self, as you can see from these pictures. The original cartoon, he had a trailer, which does not make an appearance. He's of a different make, the carton version was a flat front truck whereas the movie there is a protruding engine bay. He's got flames airbrushed to his outer shell. Now, that's what I call Optimus with style!

Bumblebee is no longer the VW Beetle that we were all so fond of. Of all the Autobots, Bumblebee was the closest one to Spike, the human connection. He's now a Camaro. Talk about V8 muscle car power. I remembered that Bumblebee was more of a sneeker, he was small and agile and could spy on the Decepticons. Now with a V8, he won't be sneeking up on anybody cause they'd hear the roar 10 miles away. Vrooom vrooom.

Megatron is no longer a small handgun. Guess the producers thought that it didn't make sense. If he was the size of a gun, he'd be a lot like a midget to a human. Did anyone noticed that whenever Megatron fires a shot as a gun, when he transforms back into a bot, he seems wasted or totally... ahem... well sorta like a guy's who's just finished his deed. Know what I mean?

Starscream on the other hand, I would say has the best 'update' for the film. He was probably an F15 Eagle back then. Now to make things contemporary, he's an F22 Raptor, the most elite and advanced fighter jet in the USAF. Geez, no wonder they had to make Megatron turn into an alien spacecraft. Otherwise, he'd get his ass whooped by Starscream who's always on the prowl waiting for the opportunity to take over.

So will the film screwed the whole generation of Transformer lovers out there or have they made it likeable to the public. I know a lot of cartoon or comic characters that have gone up to the big screen were a big let down to fans. The argument is that dollar sense makes more sense. And here's the big cliche, "Autobots, transform and roll out!"

Friday, June 22, 2007

Carrie's Farewell

Here are some photos taken today for Carrie's farewell. Though I've written it on the card, all the best to you from both Yen and I.

We're living in a stone age society

Johor has been getting a lot of media coverage for the longest time now. To me, it's really become a cowboy town of some sort. I'd imagine if people were allowed to have guns, they'd wear it proud on the waist coupled with a few slugs around the belt. You know,I haven't been to Johor myself but with all the rape cases, robberies, car jackings and what not, who could blame me for not venturing down south?

After countless petitions and countless crimes, the government and the police force have decided to do something about it. How do you even compensate for the loss that the families and people have gone through all this time? Yea, sure they can say it's better late than never. Well, why don't they put themselves in the shoes of the victims and then try to quote the same phrase.

So, now that the little cowboy town has decided to beef up security, the crime lords would probably decide to scatter and move to other towns or cities. Come to think of it, security hasn't been that great in KL either. My house was broken into two years back, so what the heck about KL?

If the government is serious about battling crime, why not launch a nationwide campaign against it? It seems that they will only concentrate on areas where cowboy towns exist and they could not be bothered about other locations. So what are our police force doing right now?

I'll tell you what, they are setting up roadblocks to stop cars with HID lights, that's precisely what they are doing. A friend of a friend, recently was driving along the NSE and he was pulled over by a Perdana. He was driving a friend's Perodua Myvi, which had HID a.k.a. Xenon lights on, modified exhaust, huge rims, the car was tinted and had all Perodua emblems removed and replaced with Toyota and TRD stickers.

Now, the cop told him that his lights looked white and informed him that he was going to be fined for it. And the officer had the cheek to inform him that he was lucky that he was only getting a fine of RM 200.00 for the HID lights and not other "illegal" modifications. According to the cop, he could issue a fine for the change of emblems, oversized rims, modified exhaust and tints, but he was only going to catch him for the HID.

We're living in a stone age society, where the authorities who have other more important tasks at hand, only focuses on the small matters. Soon, all cars coming into Malaysia has to have the HID headlamps modified a step backward, back to halogens. I've even heard stories of people with halogen bulbs, which looked a little white being stopped and fined.

So looks like I'm one of the affected people, yes my car may be standard, but they'll catch me for HID lights. Not speeding, not drink driving but for bright headlights. See what I mean by a cowboy town? The law does not care about what rule you break, just so as long as it is not a major one, you're fined. Oh, as for the major ones, you'll be arrested... but they'll take a long time to catch all of them.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Haaaa, you had a hot night!

I realized that it's been one week since my last update. Last Saturday, I made my way to Yut Kee, and before I even sat down, Uncle Shah who had already finished his half boiled eggs and toast ordered one for me. So I looked at him and smiled, "Haaaa, you had a hot night!". He replied saying that, "You too, that's why I'm ordering one set for you". Uncle Roger and Ah Seng just laughed away.

Ahh gosh, this is life. I mean, I just realized how much it means to sit there with them Uncle Shah, Uncle Roger and Ah Seng. Though they gather there at 0730hrs, I'm usually there by 0815hrs after dropping Yen off to work. I mean, these guys are really retired, or have retired, and are enjoying their lives. Even my wife was worried, why was I sitting with a bunch of uncles and that I would end up being one.

But jokes aside, they are good company. I remember I used to go there for Merv's company, but now he comes to the shop much later. Ahh, the power of delegation. But life wouldn't be the same without my visits to the shop for breakfast.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Our Wedding Day

Well, I haven't been writting much due to the hectic schedule that we have had over the past weekend. Yen and I got married on Friday and it was a wonderful day indeed. To those of my friends who were not there, here are some of the photos that were taken courtesy of Yen's brother Chris. Waitaminute, he's now my brother-in-law. Oh well, enjoy the pictures.

We started off with the blessing ceremony, it took place in a small hall in Maha Vihara temple. It was a little awkward at first as we did not understand what the monk was telling us. We had to repeat the scriptures and we did not get what he had said. At first he said the whole sentence and asked us to repeat. We were both a little confused and then the monk started saying it word for word so that we could repeat it. After the blessing session, it was off to complete the marriage.

It was quite a lenghty affair when we got to the office, which was located on the second floor. The first two couples were there ahead of us, even though we got there the earliest. But it was good, it made the whole day last longer. Here's a picture of us and our witnesses, our dads.

Thank you to my fellow colleagues who have bought nice gifts for us and also to Iris who made her way to KL from HK and managed to stay to witness this joyous occassion. To Mr. Jackson Choo, my buddy since secondary school, thanks for taking the day off to attend, I'll be sure to do the same for you. Thanks also to Uncle Roger, for organizing and informing Uncle Jack, Aunty Margaret, Uncle Sam and Aunty Pat for attending this joyous occassion. Thanks also goes out to my new family, Yen's parents, aunt and brothers for attending the ceremony. Enough writting for me, enjoy the pictures.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Quite a night we had...

So, the results of my interview came back and the Sr Manager has decided not to hire me. His PA sent me an email yesterday to check if I would be available today. I was in the office, so I said OK.

I guess, it is time I sit and think where do I really want to go from here. I have no further interest in this department and my main goal was to get out of here. Looks like one by one, people are leaving. Come next month, we'll be facing another manpower issue again. This time, I will not be covering. To hell with department goals and to hell with all the performance bonus. I've just gotten news that last FY's performance was not that good. So, they are not expecting to give out a high payout. The frontliners have already gotten their one month bonus in January, looks like for professionals and managers, we've missed that ship.

I don't know what sort of feedback that I will be getting today, but I guess it should be fated that I do not move to JB after getting married. One, not good for a newly married couple and two, I don't even know JB town. But I do know one thing, I will not stay around here to be waiting for another chance.

On a lighter note, for the past week, Uncle Roger has been trying to arrange for a stag night with the guys. If they guys are not interested, he said he'll take me out together with Uncle Jack. To make things interesting, he'll bring my dad along. Ahem... not a situation that I would like to be in. On the other hand, Steven said that they will party till 10pm and be off. I will only need to put up with them till that time and I would be free to go home. Then again, Uncle Roger said that one hour would suffice. Hmmm, no thank you.

This all brings us back to last year when we arranged for Merv's stag night. It didn't turn out the way we had hoped it to be. Firstly, Merv had to open the shop the next day due to last minute changes. Next, well another brother got really drunk and was the one hugging the girls. Yes, he hogged both for himself. After that he ended up puking his guts out in the mamak. I must say, the person sitting at the next table eating his maggi mee goreng must have had an iron clad stomach as Yaz puts it. Here was a guy, sitting no more than 3 metres away, puking his guts all over the road and he continued to eat like nothing happened. Even with the sound of someone puking would put me off food.

Quite a night we had...