Monday, 30th January '06

Canadian Cows, and Then Some.

Siao boh. I've spent the whole afternoon drafting my Research Assistant application, snoozing, and making honey-baked chicken. And now I'm blogging again just because it's a useful procrastination tool. I don't want to start reading Legal Accounting!

Last night's pseudo-reunion dinner with Lingwei and the angmohs (sorry I'm referring to them as a generic group of non-Chinese, but it's easier than saying "Armando, Mick, Susann, Fredrik, Rob, Anna, Soenke, Franzi, Jessica and Ulrike" - oh wait, I just did) involved a lengthy discussion of cows, registration of cows, and breeding of cows. We all now know that if you come across a cow named Micheal-Robert-Zerk, you know she's pretty much pure-bred. smile

Don't worry, y'all, I'll blog the reunion dinners (real and pseudo) once I get hold of the pictures. You'll get to see how the charsiew chicken turned out.

But anyhow, the whole cow discussion was just one of those random RANDOM enlightening things that you just stumble across when you interact with people from a different culture - and it reminded me of those age-old cow jokes we used to get in emails... you know, the ones that go "If you're a communist, you have two cows, your government takes both and gives you the milk"?

Everyone knows the Political Cows, so here are some Canadian Cows. I'd never seen these before, and they're quite befitting of the place I'm at. Hilarious!

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CANADIANISM
You have Fifteen billion cows. One of them gets sick. The United States bans all Canadian beef products.

NEW FOUNDLANDISM
You have two cows. That is, two female moose. Actually, the ratio works out to about 2.5, and you assume there are the same number of male moose and female moose. Yes, there are 5 moose for every person in Newfoundland.

ALBERTANISM
You have 200,000 cows. An American cow you never knew existed has mad cow. It is your fault.

(I actually wish someone could have added in a bit about oil.)

BRITISH COLUMBIANISM
You have 200,000 cows. They dont produce any soy milk. You go out of business

SASKATCHEWANISM
You have two cows. There is no rain. They die.

MANITOBAISM
You have two cows. The Red River floods and they both drown.

ONTARIOISM
You have two cows. They freeze to death in November.

(And my personal favourite...)

QUEBECISM
You have two cows. They don't moo in French. You get fined.

(Those cows also probably think they belong to a different country altogether.)

And I'll add one more myself:

NOVA SCOTIANISM
You have two cows. You're so ulu no one even bothers to write jokes about them.


---


How about some Cow Companies?

AN AMERICAN CORPORATION
You have two cows. You sell one, and force the other to produce the milk of four cows. You are surprised when the cow drops dead.

A FRENCH CORPORATION
You have two cows. You go on strike because you want three cows.

A JAPANESE CORPORATION
You have two cows. You redesign them so they are one-tenth the size of an ordinary cow and produce twenty times the milk. You then create clever cow cartoon images called Cowkimon and market them World-Wide.

A GERMAN CORPORATION
You have two cows. You reengineer them so they live for 100 years, eat once a month, and milk themselves.

(While we're at it, I can't resist another of the standard jibes we have around here. Those cows also think they're damn cool, drink too much Becks, and try to take over the world. wink )

A BRITISH CORPORATION
You have two cows. They are mad. They die. Pass the shepherd's pie, please.

AN ITALIAN CORPORATION
You have two cows, but you don't know where they are. You break for lunch.

A RUSSIAN CORPORATION
You have two cows. You count them and learn you have five cows. You count them again and learn you have 42 cows. You count them again and learn you have 12 cows. You stop counting cows and open another bottle of vodka.

A SWISS CORPORATION
You have 5000 cows, none of which belong to you. You charge others for storing them.

A BRAZILIAN CORPORATION
You have two cows. You enter into a partnership with an American corporation. Soon you have 1000 cows and the American corporation declares bankruptcy.

AN INDIAN CORPORATION
You have two cows. You worship both of them.

A CHINESE CORPORATION
You have two cows. You have 300 people milking them. You claim full employment, high bovine productivity, and arrest the newsman who reported on them.

A HONG KONG CORPORATION
You have two cows. You sell three of them to your publicly listed company, using letters of credit opened by your brother-in-law at the bank, then execute a debt/equity swap with associated general offer so that you get all four cows back, with a tax deduction for keeping five cows. The milk rights of six cows are transferred via a Panamanian intermediary to a Cayman Islands company secretly owned by the majority shareholder, who sells the rights to all seven cows' milk back to the listed company. The annual report says that the company owns eight cows, with an option on one more. Meanwhile, you kill the two cows because the fengshui is bad.

AN ISRAELI CORPORATION
There are these two Jewish cows, right? They open a milk factory, an ice cream store, and then sell the movie rights. They send their calves to Harvard to become doctors. So, who needs people?

AN ARKANSAS CORPORATION
You have two cows. That one on the left is kinda cute.

---


I really should get back to doing something more productive. I do however, think that these cows increase one's general knowledge a bit.

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 09:56 pm
[3 photographs developed.]


How Do You Go from This to \\THIS\\?

Something tells me that blogging an impossibly soppy song like this will not do wonders for my reputation, but anyway.

So I was walking home after 2 gruelling hours of Family Law on a Monday morning - 初二, no less *frown* - and listening to this song as covered by Clay Aiken. And I began to wonder how much knowing the Family Law can turn you into a real big cynic. I'm pretty sure that at the time the fella was popping the relevant questions, he didn't quite have, for example, the division of matrimonial assets at the back of his mind. Now you know what this morning's seminar was all about.

And when, presumably, he asks the next question ("Darling, shall we have a baby?") and she says "yes", I don't think any of them would have thought about how wildly unpredictable custody battles are, the problems of potential parental relocation etc etc.

Obviously, I'm not much of a romantic. sleepy But lest you Smubs start freaking out that none of you can get married until Dajie does, it doesn't mean I'm not going to say "yes" at some point. It's just one of those things the TFYE people used to call my "academic exercises".

It's still a sweet song, though. One of those things that you still think would be nice if it happened to you... all pretty and fairytale-like. Pity all these Chinese boys are so humji (Chinese dialect for "no balls"). Haha. I know Limin and Qiong will back me up on this.

And Lucas, I know you're going to have something indignant to say about how girls always put the burden on the boys to do all the work and bear all the risks of rejection, and we have no right to call you humji... I don't really have an answer to that except to say that since we carry the blasted babies for 9 months apiece, you guys can compensate in some other little ways, can't you?


And She Said "Yes"
-- Rhett Atkins


He never had given much thought to dancing.
But she gave a lot of thought to being asked.
Well he'd never been good at coming right on out and asking,
And she never'd been given the chance.
But something moved him 'cross that old gym floor,
When fear was holding fast.
And to his surprise the words came at last:

And she said: "Yes," to his half-hearted request.
And they held on for dear life 'til the last song played.
They won't let go, it's beyond their control.
They lit a flame with a match God had made,
When she said: "Yes."

From that night on, the fire was burning,
And they sure did shine in its light.
And, he knew as long as this old world kept turning,
He wanted her by his side.
So with a ring and a nervous smile,
And some lines that he'd rehearsed,
He said the sweetest words that she'd ever heard:

And she said: "Yes," to his whole-hearted request.
And they'll hold on for dear life 'til the last stars fade.
No they won't let go, it's beyond their control.
They lit a flame with a match God had made,
When she said: "Yes."

They lit a flame with a match God had made,
When she said: "Yes."

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 01:39 pm
[1 photograph developed.]


Thursday, 26th January '06

I'm in a New York State of Mind

I've discovered the joys of embedding files from youtube.com, so here you go. Now I can upload a whole bunch of silly vids without crashing the poor, much-beleaguered (is that an appropriate word?) February-Rains.

1. Chelsea Movie-Making



This was just too stupid. This is what happens when this particular group of girls comes together. I know, I look like Cousin It from the Adam's Family. And yes, that hand signal was meant to be what Russell Peters calls the Italian "What the F*ck" gesture.

What essentially happened here was that we were sitting around drinking our Christmas presents from Vicki. I honestly believe that all of us were sober in a bio-chemical sense. Ok, Qiong's state after all 3ml of vodka might have been questionable. But I've never not been rather insane when I was with these girls (grad-night - oh my word, I apologise for bursting into the hotel room at 6am in the morning laughing hysterically; I still don't know what got into me).

Anyhow, some of us *significant look* thought it would be really fun to film a pilot episode of some madcap cartoon, which involved a suicidal Penguin being rescued from certain death (jumping off a Poster carton which contained a Willy Wonka poster) by a fuzzy dog with a Christmas stocking sewed to his mouth. For the most part, I was sitting in my happy corner cringing, or trying to suffocate myself under the blanket, or waving the WTF gesture at the rest of them.

By the way, the Penguin and the Pooch you see there were my Christmas presents for Ningz and Tzo respectively. Bad idea, evidently.

I don't suppose anyone but the people who were there would actually understand the video - this one is simply significant for the fact that Qiong actually uttered the grossly incoherent phrase "WE'RE GETTING HIGH ON WONKA", and then tried to deny ever saying it. Remember folks, you heard it here.

---


2. The Little Drummer Boy



The next night at Kenneth's legendary alcoholess Christmas Party. You'll hear me trying VERY hard not to laugh and eventually sounding like a deranged monkey. I apologise that our hysterical laughter drowned out most of the good bits (parapumpumpum), but you get the idea.

---


3. The Teething Dinos



This is really what we did at the American Museaum of Natural History. Of course we did the proper things like going through the bones and the taxidermy (Vicki: "Taxeedermeeeee *drool*"), but really, we had a lot more fun tearing up the gift shop. The last bits are rather embarrassing.

Of COURSE we didn't buy anything. smile

---


4. Reunion



This was actually one of the earliest vids, but I'm too tired to do this chronologically. This is Vicki and Qiong reuniting after 4 years. All together now...

AWWWW.

---


5. Mitsubishi & Kwasha



I've only really got a good video of Mitsubishi - whom even by mine and Qiong's standards, is a rather gay half-past-six figure skater. I mean gay in a very non-homophobic sense. Here you see him terrorizing the Rockerfeller centre with his half-baked waltz jumps and poncy poses. Seeing as we were standing in line to skate for 2 hours, he was pretty good entertainment. We call him Mitsubishi for no better reason than from afar he looked kinda Japanese. And somehow names like Hyundai, Takashimaya or Yamashita (yeah, the General) didn't work, in my mind.

Kwasha was worse. You'll see him flitting in and out of the screen in his white and orange hockey jersey. We call him Kwasha because for better or worse, that was the name on the back of the jersey. He was psychotic. He'd skate, try to do balletic looking three-turns (the figure skating terminology is for my own enjoyment) on hockey skates, and then do a jerky backward snow-plough stop, stick out a foot, point his two fingers down and mouth "woo!". I will give personal demonstrations if you ask. He must have thought he looked cool because he did it over and over and over and over... and it was in such bad taste it wasn't even funny.

---


6. Under the Boardwalk



This is the last one I'm going to put up tonight. It's just for you, Gerri. Coz Qiong said you'd like it. It's good stuff.

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 11:03 pm
[1 photograph developed.]


Monday, 23rd January '06

Lessons from a Real Election

Yes Luk, I'm updating. smile

Right. So 23 January 2006 has arrived. For the folks who haven't heard, it's General Election Day in Canada. The polls are closing as I type and the seats in Ottawa are fast being filled. And I'm pleasantly surprised at how exciting it all is. Sitting by the TV, listening to Rob (Canadian Engineering Masters student who lives 2 doors down - he's not around much, but he voted Liberal and so has some vested interest in sitting by the TV with me and explaining the whole process), and just for once watching something for which the results aren't already known.

Heck, it's exciting that one even gets to vote in these parts! It may well be that in my entire lifetime I never get to vote *thinks about moving to Potong Pasir*. Nah, it would mean my HDB flat never gets upgraded.

Of course, Canadian Media Law prohibits me from giving any real time results on this blog. Yes, it's true. British Columbia's still polling away. Well, techically I'm not so sure it's an enforceable prohibition, but...

Anyhow, here are some little lessons that have occurred to me over the past days, done in a somewhat Mr-Brownian, Singapore National Education sort of style.

I have learnt lately: -

Lesson One: That the Green Party should get better on-the-street promotors.

Last Friday after school a bunch of us were sitting at the Dalhousie Gradhouse (something of an on-campus pub cum lousy Chinese food joint). Before anyone misconstrues what the word "us" entails, let me emphasize the international nature of this group. We consisted of:

2 x Singaporeans (Lingwei and I)
2 x Australians (Rob and Mick)
1 x Swede (David)
1 x Mexican (Armando)
1 x German (Zerk, who really isn't from Dal and/or Law but who cares?)

Some lady then comes up and offers us green ribbons attached to little cards. Before any of us get a chance to read the cards and find out what this unexpected (and frankly, suspicious) spate of generousity was for, she chirpily bleats: "...and DON'T FORGET TO VOTE!"

*split-second of stunned silence*

(*realisation that that was too much alliteration for one phrase*)

*realisation that there was not a single person at that table that could vote even if he (or the one pathetic "she" - i.e. me) wanted*

And we all burst out laughing.

Nevermind that, it's a legitimate enough mistake. Nevermind that all the accents were weird. Nevermind that she eventually realizes the mistake and laughs good naturedly. What I DO mind is that she comes back later and TAKES BACK THE RIBBONS. Way to go.

---


Lesson Two: Never underestimate the power of incumbency

I probably shouldn't blog the inspiration for this *koffAtlanticCanadagoingveryLiberalkoff*, but one of the politics-explaining news anchors constantly tells us that one should never underestimate the power of incumbency - meaning that all the ridings (rough equivalent of "constituency" in Singapore) are turning out the same as they did in the last election. Atlantic Canada, it seems, is very happy with their current polititions and representation in the House of Commons.

It is at this point that I get a vaguely strange feeling. I begin to feel older. Like a grandmother. Like a grandmother listening to someone teaching me something I already know. Like a grandmother being taught to suck eggs, to be precise.

Believe me, you really shouldn't be talking to a Singaporean about the power of incumbency. sleepy

---


Lesson Three: Sitting between two Liberal supporters can be an amusing experience.

You could be sitting between a subdued, calm Rob, and an outspoken, and visibly agitated Carlos. You could have Rob saying on-and-off that it's still close, it's still anyone's game; only to provoke some stiring comment from a strongly anti-Conservative (more like anti-their-foreign-policy-with-respect-to-the-US) Carlos in the vein of "Freaking rednecks!" / "Do you see any immigrants in that crowd?!"

*Carlos being the of Brazillian descent but Canadian parttime Political Science professor in SMU (St Mary's University), parttime Salsa-papa / Sargeant Major / Granddaddy of the YMCA.

It's nice to be around people who care. wink

---


Lesson Four: 11:30pm is a good time to decide to toss out the copy of Bill C-22 that your Liberal-voting Family Law professor gave you a week ago.

By that time, results from mostly everywhere but BC were in and stabilising. Conservatives going for a minority government by the skin of Harper's shiny, media-polished teeth. *ching*

Bill C-22, an Act to amend the Divorce Act, the Family Orders and Agreements Enforcement Assitance Act... blahdeblah was one of that 1000-odd bills that went *kapish* upon the vote of no confidence. But due to the enthusiasm of Prof T, we got the Bill distributed as a handout anyway. I don't know if the Conservatives will support bringing it back, but I do have some confidence it now won't be done in time for the exams. Whee!

Our dear weed-smokers, on the other hand, will probably react with much lesser enthusiasm. I may be wrong, but I doubt that reviving the Bill for the legalising of marijuana in Canada is all that pressing a concern to the Tories.

---


Lesson Five: I wouldn't like to be Steven Harper right now, a.k.a. what kind of crappy minority government is that?!

I have made fun of the PAP's stranglehold on power enough. Really, I will stop doing that - at least for the rest of this entry, because the idea of a minority government is mildly shocking and somewhat scary. I didn't think too much of it before - you know, we're conditioned to the rhetoric about the importance of having some kind of effective opposition - but when the seats are (at this moment) 122 Tories to 105 Liberals... you wonder if it's such a good thing to have such a strong opposition.

Listening to the commentators break down the potential political gymnastics that Harper's going to have to engage in to get ANYTHING passed in the House makes me feel slightly bad for him. The Liberals aren't going to help him (duh). The NDP is more naturally aligned with the Liberals and therefore won't help him. So he's got to get all chummy with the Bloc - and who wants to be openly chummy with the oddball seperatist party? Not to mention that the Tories just pinched something like 10 seats out of under the Bloc's noses in the Bloc's jealously guarded territory, so you'd hardly expect BQ to be particularly friendly.

Suddenly my junzi government with its overwhelming majority don't look so bad.

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Lesson Six: You mean you can refuse to recognise that another party won?

There was some talk going around that Martin might refuse to concede defeat. What is that supposed to mean - that he'll start some fiasco about merely dimpled chads a la the US Presidential Elections 2000? Cannot be THAT bohliao, right?

And then there was the talk about whether Martin would stick around for the long haul. Some say he's too old, some say whatever they say... I don't know anything about this. Some say he might have some crazy idea of sticking around until the next election, and then some say even then it would be time for him to hand over the reigns to new blood.

Or he could stick around as a Minister Mentor. *shrug*

---


*En Ying will now return to the dodgy TV Room to be educated on what Real Elections are about. More real-time updates to come.*

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 09:58 pm
[10 photographs developed.]


Friday, 20th January '06

Once in a Lifetime

Every once in a while a song hits me. This one has just done so. It's a nice bunch of questions to ask oneself every once in a while.

Though I wouldn't recommend doing it too often, for fear of creating (or relapsing into, in some cases) another existential crisis.

Once in a Lifetime
-- Talking Heads


And you may find yourself living in a shotgun shack
And you may find yourself in another part of the world
And you may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile
And you may find yourself in a beautiful house, with a beautiful wife
And you may ask yourself:

Well...how did I get here?

Letting the days go by; let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by; water flowing underground
Into the blue again; after the money’s gone
Once in a lifetime; water flowing underground.

And you may ask yourself - how do I work this?
And you may ask yourself - where is that large automobile?
And you may tell yourself - this is not my beautiful house!
And you may tell yourself - this is not my beautiful wife!

Letting the days go by; let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by; water flowing underground
Into the blue again; after the money’s gone
Once in a lifetime; water flowing underground.

Same as it ever was, same as it ever was, same as it ever was.
Same as it ever was, same as it ever was, same as it ever was.
Same as it ever was, same as it ever was.

Water dissolving...and water removing
There is water at the bottom of the ocean
Carry the water at the bottom of the ocean
Remove the water at the bottom of the ocean...

Letting the days go by; let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by; water flowing underground
Into the blue again; in the silent water
Under the rocks and stones; there is water underground.

Letting the days go by; let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by; water flowing underground
Into the blue again; after the money’s gone
Once in a lifetime; water flowing underground.

You may ask yourself - what is that beautiful house?
You may ask yourself - where does that highway go to?
And you may ask yourself - am I right? Am I wrong?
And you may say to yourself:

My God! What have I done?

Letting the days go by; let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by; water flowing underground
Into the blue again; into the silent water
Under the rocks and stones; there is water underground.

Letting the days go by; let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by; water flowing underground
Into the blue again; after the money’s gone
Once in a lifetime; water flowing underground.

Same as it ever was, same as it ever was, same as it ever was.
Same as it ever was, same as it ever was, same as it ever was.
Same as it ever was, same as it ever was.

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 06:28 pm
[1 photograph developed.]


Wednesday, 18th January '06

My Experiential Night

I wasn't really going to blog this until David gave me the idea to. I was going to read Securities Regulations materials, but you can guess where all the resolve went. I seem to be blogging an extrodinary lot over the past month. It's horrible, I've picked up mammoth procrastinating skills. Buy anyhow...

Rob's (new Australian exchange student from QUT) birthday dinner tonight at the East Side Mario's Restaurant. Possibly the nicest restaurant I've been to in a while - when I say nicest I don't mean that the food was amazing (though it certainly wasn't bad), or that the place had the greatest ambience. I just mean that it was the most family oriented, morally clean and just, you know, nice place I've seen. Cora's doesn't count because no one goes to Cora's at night.

And still it served alcohol. I really don't think an alcohol licence costs very much here. If there is such a thing. Dammit, should come here and open up a Wala Wala's, Babs. People here've got an appetite for EIC-type music too.

But entrepreneural musings aside, the East Side Mario's experience (so aptly put by 3 Canadian girls I met) was amusing, to say the least. Because it was his birthday, poor Rob was made to spin this large, wooden "wheel of fortune" and won a free dessert. I still maintain that here they sing "Happy Birthday" in a very subdued fashion, but I completely declined to give a demonstration of the rousing Singaporean-style. I refuse to be the only person to be in the restaurant going "Happy BIRTHday to RoBEEEERRRRRRRTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!!" with the gusto of the groom's buddies yam-seng-ing at a wedding. Phooey.

*Has flashbacks of BenKoh's 17th Birthday and the Rubber Duckie, you're the one! affair.*

And then there was the RAIN. Buckets of RAIN. And us running through the ridiculous RAIN.

Yes yes, it was an EXPERIENCE.

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 11:43 pm
[6 photographs developed.]


To Go, Or Not to Go, That Is the Question.

(You might want to see the attached invitation first. Scroll down.)

There's a very high likelihood that the answer will be no. In fact, I can hardly think of anything more intimidating. Not because I don't want to meet people from the CSSA, but because I can imagine gawping like a fish out of water when trying to employ my impossibly rusty Chinese language skills to speak to people from China / Taiwan / Hong Kong and being exposed for being the almost banana-fied (read: yellow on the outside, white on the inside) creature that I am.

I say ALMOST because you will NEVER catch me admitting to be a banana, or a potato-eater (not in the kartoffelkopf sense, but in the chiak-kentang sense), or a guai-lo, or any other of these colourful terms we have to describe Chinese people who simply Cannot Make It. I'm totally not - I even sing Chinese poetry when I'm stressed - Zhihui will remember this: 煮豆燃豆萁。。。

Well, ok, to be perfectly honest, the idea of overly-enthusiastic Asians belting out 上海滩, 月亮代表我的心, or any other of the 2500 classic karaoke favourites - or (heaven forbid) 恭喜恭喜恭喜你呀!- while perpetuaing the unfortunate stereotype of geeky karaoke-monsters? That sends chills down my spine. The advertising a "professional Karaoke machine", trust me, doesn't make it any better. It also conjures up images of cheeko peks lusting after nubile young hostesses amidst pulsating neon lights.

I know, I know, it's DAL. It's not Geylang. But still...

真是令人毛骨悚然。See, I'm becoming more cheenafied already. smile

And what the hell is "Chinese Kongfu dance"? And Hip-Pop? *Worries about deplorable 5566 / Wong Fei Hong amalgamations*

But oh my word, if they have suckling pig? I'm there. I'll even sing 大地回春 or something. Or maybe not. Maybe only if Vicki comes with me - then I will go simply to see her squirm. (Vicki... come for this... *snort*. Tomorrow Georgie-Bush and Sadaam will play golf together. crazy )

Chinese New Year is really my favourite holiday. *happy sigh*

---


Chinese New Year Party

Organizers: Dalhousie Chinese Students and Scholars Association (CSSA)

Date & Time: Saturday, January 28, 2006 at 6.30 pm

Place: Student Union Building (SUB), McInnes Room (2nd floor)

Party content:
1. A performance party which consists of Chinese traditional performances such as Chinese Kongfu dance, Chinese traditional dance, Chinese magic, as well as some western performances such as Hip-Pop dance, etc.;
2. This will be followed by a Karaoke party. A professional Karaoke machine is rented for this karaoke party. This machine consists 2,5000 songs including English songs, Korean songs, Chinese songs etc.

...

Food & drink: Chinese food and drinks will be served in the party.

Lottery:
A lottery will be involved in the party. Major prizes are:
- 1 TV; and
- 3 CD players; and
- tonnes of small presents.

...

Thanks and CSSA is looking forward to seeing you at the party.

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 06:14 pm
[3 photographs developed.]


Monday, 16th January '06

Pour Some Sugar On Me

Thank you, Def Leppard, for an apt way to describe sweetness.

Thanks also, you lovely girls, for your messages about missing me during the holidays. My holidays were that much emptier without you too. Especially the DHLC (please see below). Though of course being able to spend time with the 401 Centre-Table Gang (we need a better name than this) was awesome too.





If I may, I'd also like redirect you to this particularly controversial entry by the Baboon itself, entitled "Welcome to Club D.H.L.C.".

First off, you will never catch me admitting that Dage is the big boss - I don't care, I'm Dajie, he will not get to make unilateral decisions like this, I too have veto power - but in this case I agree. "Smub" is far too sacred a name to be overthrown like this. We should probably get it trademarked or something. And Dage is also right that if we had a name like "Airporteers" we'd be dead by now. Same goes for "MochaFrappateers" and all other hideous spawn of Limin's Imagination.

The next step would then be to translate Smub into international languages. 思马布, anyone? *falls over laughing*

I don't suppose I'll object to Club DHLC being the subsidiary company. We could incorporate Smub Pte Ltd (ahahah, Bert, do you remember the days the founding members had 20% shareholding each and Limin had 15% so that the other minority shareholders could take 1% each? Shit, that was funny. I can't even believe it's been 4 years since Smub started) and then make it the holding company of Club DHLC Pte Ltd, a wholely-owned subsidiary with Limin as the COO. Heck, we might even need a Malaysian branch to reach out to the absurdly-MIA Lucas. So we could also have Club DHLC (M'sia) Sdn Bhd.

I don't know what just brought on that bout of inanity. I apologise - must be the Chinese New Year spirit creeping in early. Pineapple tart / bakkwa withdrawal symptoms make me go a bit crazy.

Crap, now I've gone all nostalgic. Check out these photos I dug up:





A Christmas ages ago. It was just after the A's, 2002. We looked so young.





Aww... My Handsome Brothers. All I can say is... good genes.





Limin's Bed is the official HQ lah.





Sometime circa 2003. I remember I went back to KR with Jia after this. This is us at LIPS.





I can't BELIEVE how scarily family-like we look in this one. This is Dage's Teochew Dinner!

In other news, Jem and I have decided that you all suck majorly for going to Ministry of Sound without us. The rooms look damn cool lah.

Oh my, I'm a rather prolific blogger today, no?

"Casanova" is also the singularly most crappy film I've seen since... "Dude, Where's My Car". Enjoyable, but so so stupid.

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 11:09 pm
[8 photographs developed.]


No Climate of Fear

Far be it from me to run any potentially law-career-in-the-public-sector-killing experiments - yes, I do want to be a Legal Aid lawyer at some point - but I just had to blog a bit on this. Maybe it's a bit late a response, seeing as the article came up ages ago, but in light of the mutual eyebrow-raising moment Lingwei and I had in the Internet & Media Law class last week...

For the good of my health and that of my family, potential children etc etc, I'll state upfront that I have very little political opinion on this. Perhaps I'll formulate one in time, but for now it's just all just "hurhurhur" amusing.

---


Singapore says no climate of fear in city-state

Reuters
May 27, 2005
SINGAPORE


SINGAPORE defended its media laws on Friday, May 27, and balked at the suggestion that its citizens live in a climate of fear.

Singapore's home affairs minister Wong Kan Seng said in a newspaper interview that citizens in the city-state have spoken up at public forums without reprisals and commentaries critical of government policies have also appeared in newspapers.

"What is the consequence of saying something that is challenged? Is the consequence being locked up in jail, disappearing in the middle of the night and you don't come back?" Wong was quoted as saying in Singapore's Straits Times.
-- I swear this is exactly what I was told would happen if I ever said anything against the PAP. My source is a bit paranoid, lah, but still, Mr Wong picked up on exactly the sentiment floating around these days.

"Get real. Come on, we live in the real world in Singapore."

In an annual report released on Wednesday, rights group Amnesty International slammed Singapore's human rights record, saying that control on political expression in the wealthy Southeast Asian city-state remained tight despite Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's repeated calls for more openness.

The US State Department, in its 2004 report on Singapore, sharply criticised the country for using libel suits to intimidate opposition politicians, saying the threat of libel has stifled political opinion and disadvantaged opposition.
-- Two remarks on this: first, that's the kind of impression one gets from studying Public Law in NUS, really. But on the other hand, the US has no right to open it's mouth. They should go sort out all their own Patriot Act mess before getting on our case.

Early this month, a 23-year-old Singapore student in the United States shut down his personal Web site after a government agency threatened a libel suit for comments he made on the blog.

Wong, who will assume the post of deputy prime minister later this year, also defended a law which bans political videos, saying that the law is applied in an even-handed manner and not designed to stifle political debate.

"Political videos, by their very nature, will be political, will be biased and, therefore, will not be able to allow the listener or the viewer to see a whole range of arguments," Wong said, adding that proposals for films about the ruling People's Action Party (PAP) were also shot down.
-- I don't know lah, I actually thing it would be a better strategic move for the PAP to let us see some real stuff. I subscribe to the idea of the jun-zi Gahmen, for now at least, and trust me, with the Public Law prof that I had, I've seen some pretty radical conspiracy theories.

Under provisions introduced to the Films Act in 1998, anyone involved in the production or distribution of "party political films" -- defined as films containing partisan references or commentaries on government policies -- can be punished with fines of up to S$100,000 (US$60,860) or a maximum jail term of 2 years.

The law came under fire this month after local filmmaker Martyn See was summoned for police questioning over a documentary he made featuring prominent opposition leader Chee Soon Juan.

Wong was also asked about whether the law applied to TV stations airing programmes about PAP ministers, following a recent series of one-hour programmes on state broadcaster Channel NewsAsia that featured government ministers.

"That is not a political video. That's a broadcaster and a content provider doing a job. It is done in other places. The minister is explaining himself, his policies and how he wants Singapore to move ahead," Wong said.

International free-press advocates have repeatedly criticised Singapore for its tight media control.

The government bans non-commercial private ownership of satellite dishes, and publications need permits to circulate. Films and TV shows are routinely censored for sex and violence.
-- All I can say is... we have Shared Values. I'll come back to this after I learn more Entertainment Law and Media Law.

The government says a high degree of control over public debate and the media is needed to maintain law and order.

"Someone once said, 'My right to swing my arm must end where your nose begins'. That is the limit of free action; that is the boundary," Wong said.
-- Somehow I have this image of Mr Wong swinging his arms in a mad frenzy within a hair's breadth of the good citizens' noses.

Singapore has been ruled by the People's Action Party since independence in 1965. Its 84-member Parliament has only two opposition members.

---


I don't know about you, but I love the way they tagged that last paragraph on at the end. In the immortal words of Babs: THAT WAS A CHEAP SHOT. Seriously. I've been at the receiving end of too many Singapore-related cheap shots lately. But one needs to be able to laugh at the inequities of one's own country, really.

And the best response to this article has to be Mr Brown's:
"That now I know why I say "Gahmen also I not scared". Because Gahmen say I not scared."
Me: BWWAHAHAHHA.

Unfortunately for me, Gahman I kinda scared.

At the back of my mind I keep doing these Canadian comparisons, somehow. Our I&M prof, right at the outset of the first lecture, mentioned that the freedom of expression in Canada has had a pretty poor history. At first it wasn't even a written right, since Canada inherited the UK's unwritten constitution. And the Charter of Rights and Freedoms wasn't set down in stone till 1982, where it now states:

2. Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms...
(b) freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication


1982! That's late. Even Singapore had our Consitutional right to freedom of speech set down in 1963. And we ain't even that old a country:

Freedom of speech, assembly and association
14(1) Subject to clauses (2) and (3) —
(a) every citizen of Singapore has the right to freedom of speech and expression


Needless to say subsections (2) and (3) are a bunch of public interest exceptions etc. So of course, the true nature of that right has been hotly debated - therefore giving rise to mine and Lingwei's eyebrow-raises.

Ahhaha. I just love my quirky little country and our democratic authoritarianism. big grin

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 05:50 pm
[well, the pictures aren't going to take themselves!]


Just Try Not to Think With Your Ass

My apologies for a cryptic entry. When you know what it means, you know what it means. Please also refer back to the "Heart Can Be an Ass" entry in the archives.

An entry borne out of the frustration with being a perennial Aunt Agony, I think. smile And maybe reading that "Divorce" chapter for Family Law.

Limin came up with a good line today: "us all stupid kids. that's why we are good friends." Suitably steeped in Singlish sentence structure to represent us too, I guess. WHY oh WHY, are we all such bloody drama-mamas? I don't just mean the girls; our guys also... sibeh jialat. We're completely incapable of flinging around, playing the fool, and just plain enjoying life and being happy. Whatever happened to 拿得起放得下? Relationships aren't supposed to ALL turn out like Days of Our Lives, are they? Smub has too many sagas as it is.

If it's that much pain, if it's that much effort and if it means you're reduced to waiting on an idiot boy who can't seem to get his act together - FERGEDABOUTIT. Yes, I mean if he has no brains / heart / gonads or any other important bodily organ, it's probably not worth the effort. Geez. We're young enough to not have to worry about settling down for the rest of our lives. So all this talk about him being The One (I'm not even sure that's a valid concept anyways) is probably the Ass of a Heart bullshitting you again.

So what I'm thinking right now is: we all need a break lah. All this seriousness is too... serious. We should all go PLAY. Do things without a constant calculation and sitting plucking daisies going "he loves me, he loves me not". If he loves you (or me. Or her) he will just make his mind up one way or another and make it obvious enough. But until he does... there's no need to sit around waiting for his no-balls self to do whatever it is that guys with no balls do.

In the meantime, there are other fish to fry. They'll probably taste pretty good too.

I guess all I'm saying is... Relac One Corner, alrighty? And try not to think with your ass.

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 12:48 am
[3 photographs developed.]


Wednesday, 11th January '06

Parents, the Care and Feeding Of.

Parents are a tricky business.

I've been raised on a diet of fillial piety, the story of the whatshisname who cut off a chunk of his arm to feed his mother, the 慈母手中线 poem, honour-thy-Father-and-Mother and other associated Chinese-Christian values. And it works very well for me. That's because I have pretty liberal (by Asian standards, anyway), reasonable and quirky parents.

The cool things my parents do / have done:
- Never set house rules. Nothing about the amount of TV I can watch, how loud the stereo can blast (heck, I end of nagging Dad about the TV volume), or running in the house.
- Never forbade swearing. I love that Ma was the first person to teach me the proper usuage of "f*ck". It's hilarious, I think I was 7 and she told me it was for "very bad people". Like the other drivers on the roads (a.k.a. "f*ck-face), evidently. *chuckle*
- Never caned. Very at odds with government policy, but it somehow worked.
- Never grounded me.
- Did ultra-stupid things with me: like when I was 5, Dad took me "mountain-climbing" on that pathetic little molehill near the house. Or how we sit in the car belting out Beatles classics.
- Forget to give me the "where do babies come from?" talk. Ma somehow just start discussing procreation issues until she realised, to her horror, that her 10-year-old daughter still thought that two people sharing a bed was enough produce a new member of the family. Of course I got the full low-down - biology, pictures and all, after that - the joys of parents in the medical field.
- Never compared me or my results to anyone else... mahjong khakis' kids / neighbours / cousins or anyone. They also never sent me to SCGS and joined the tai-tai clubs. Muahaha.
- Never worried about me being left on the shelf and go all trigger happy with my guy friends, thank heavens for English-educated parents.

Obviously there's a very delicate balancing act in keeping that all in check. I've had my share of what I term "Simple Plan moments":
- "I'm just a kid, my life is a nightmare."
- "One day, I won't take this anymore; one day I'll be old enough to do, to do, to do, what I want to."
- "I'm sorry I can't be perfect." (Quite the song of my generation, it seems.)
And general fantasies that they must have picked me out of of a garbage bin in Ulu Pandan and that I couldn't possibly bear their genetic material.

But by and large, the major meltdowns haven't lasted very long. So I always feel vaguely out-of-it when I'm discussing the issue of how to deal with parents with other people. I don't always know what to say about it when faced with conflicting interests. Somehow I've always used a combination of selective disclosure, tactful compliments, playing the you-want-me-to-learn-to-make-my-own-decisions-right? card, nodding and going "mm!" but being non-committal overall, and good ol' "pretty please?!?", and I've never not gotten what I needed (lack of permission to go scuba diving and fear of the giant squid notwithstanding, for those of you who know what I'm talking about). And I never get why it doesn't work when my friends do it.

Err. Yesh. That's about it. Effectively what I think I'm trying to articulate is I have a hard time arbitrating the child versus parent thing. I've never really needed to deal with it myself. I get kind of inconsistent, one moment telling someone not to judge her mother, and the next telling her to encourage said mother to leave the country. Maybe I should jsut keep my meddlesome fingers out of it.

Yeah, I think I'll do that. Mai kaypoh.

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 05:41 pm
[8 photographs developed.]


Monday, 9th January '06

2005 in a Nutshell (Or 40 Questions)

If anyone's noticed, I seem to have stopped doing these random quizilla things (thank heavens!), but every once in a while something halfway-thoughtful comes up. Thanks Qiong. Some of your answers (read: "NBK related things") were pretty amusing.

So I'm doing this to procrastinate and avoid doing readings.

---


1. What did you do in 2005 that you'd never done before?

Hmm. In chronological order, I hope:
- Dealt with a major growing pain, and adolescent rite of passage, perhaps. *grin* And in the process told a certain Flummoxed Fish to go F*ck Himself. Tzo's right, I'm just too proud of that.
- Got the Drivers' Licence. Now that was a long time in coming. (Off Singapore's mandatory 1-year probation come 15 February 2006, woohoo!)
- Lead the production of a full one Dance Show, Evocation '05. Organistion stuff not the main issue, but having my Presidential head on the chopping block was the thing.
- Watched someone in the family pass away. It's not meant to sound insensitive, but there it is. And realised there are times a kid has to look after the parents too. It also involved becoming closer to some cousins and aunts.
- Became a corporate drone. In the course of which, learnt to have some legal interaction in CHINESE, oh my word. Try explaining "sub-service of divorce papers" on for size.
- Lived away from home and parents and all things familiar for *counts* 4.5 months now! And really got to know some international people. And went to class with people way out of my league.
- Had whole lobster, maritime style.
- Got an A+ for a Law assignment. Wonders will never cease, it was such a fluke.
- Went to NYC! And had a grossly expensive USD$70 dinner.

2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

Only the ones about getting the Drivers' Licence and starting to go to church. Not the one about continuing to go to church, unfortunately. Haven't made any new ones, and am not likely to.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

Err. Ariel was born a bit earlier than 2005, right? If yes, then no one did. If no, then 姐姐-Lily did. Die. I don't even remember how old my nieces are.

4. Did anyone close to you die?

Yeah. Miss you, Ah Kong.

5. What countries did you visit?

Sydney, Australia. Nova Scotia / Prince Edward Island, Canada. New York, Philadelphia, Maryland, Washington DC, U.S.A.

6. What would you like to have in 2006 that you lacked in 2005?

A father who will let me drive a car alone. smile *nudgenudgehinthintDad*

7. What date from 2005 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

13 January, NUS released exchange nominations results. Hello, Dalhousie. *wink*
8 March, Ah Kong's anniversary.
15 February, passed driving test after 2 years of stalling. First try - it's amazing what a smile and earnest look can do. Heehee. Remembered because this time in 2006, the dreaded neon probabtion plates will be BURNT.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

This is getting a bit repetitive, but dealing with Flummoxed Fish, and the driving test, and surving overseas.

9. What was your biggest failure?

I'm not sure. I haven't done anything I've regretted.

10.Did you suffer illness or injury?

Nothing major beyond... OH. The temporomandibular joint affair. No biggie.

11.What was the best thing you bought?

Powerbook G4 and IPOD.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?

Mine. Nah, seriously:
- Kai. For taking SO MUCH crap from all us Smubs and always being around dispute her own affairs. You're invaluable, babe.
- Limin. For also always being so... there. Even from the Blue Mountains.
- Vicki. For looking after me so much in Halifax.
- Emma. For being my Halifax buddy and saving me from having to deal with the guys alone. Heh.

13.Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

Flummoxed Fish. But that was long ago, it's all done. Not forgotten, evidently, but DONE.

14.Where did most of your money go?

Food. Invariably it ended up on my ass.

15.What did you get really, really, really excited about?

Exchange (the running away from home part), the Legal Aid Bureau internship (geek that I am), some Dance Ensemble stuff (the prospect of handing over to the next unsuspecting Executive Committee, especially).

16.What song will always remind you of 2005?

There is no one song, and you guys know how musicky I am:
- "Beached", Orbital
- "Fiona", EIC (just one of the many that reminds me of the sillier Wala's occasions with the Smubs and Blueberries)
- "Hidayah" (danced ad nauseum so that it's just STUCK IN MY HEAD all the time)
- Any silly Mambo songs... *chuckle*. (Because they remind me of Babs and Kai and JnJ)
- "Taylor", Jack Johnson (reminds me of Babs and Gnet)
- "Barrett's Privateers" and any number of PEI-related songs, most notably the traumatising "Do-dos and Woah-ohs", Kisschasy.

17.Compared to this time last year, are you happier or sadder?

Please lor. This time last year I was coming up with elaborate schemes to castrate Flummoxed Fish. What do you think?

18.What do you wish you'd done more of?

Sleeping. Travelling.

19.What do you wish you'd done less of?

I don't know. Stoning (in the Singaporean sense), perhaps.

20.How did you spend Christmas?

In the good company of Tzo, Vic, Qiong and Ningz. At Harrison's, trying to look like we knew how to appreciate the Riesling, Biscuits and Gravy, Pan Roasted Haddock (I can't really remember) and that gorgeos Pear Dessert thing. And trying not to scream out loud at the price of it all.

I believe later it involved opening Chirstmas presents (yay, wooly scarf and... Vodka?), drinking the presents (thanks, Qiong for kicking over my last 15ml) and being rather Singaporean about it all. I have to say again, poor Vicki, and this time I mean it. I HONESTLY don't think you're an alcoholic.

22.Did you fall in love in 2005?

Nope.

23. How many one-night stands?

None lah.

24.What was your favorite TV program?

Tricky one. I watched a good bit of the O.C., Lost, Desperate Housewives and Prison Break. All pretty good, but nothing I would RAVE about.

25.Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?

Nope.

26.What was the best book you read?

I can't remember the title exactly, but I browsed a couple of chapters in Borders. Something like "The Actor's Handbook". Very inspirational.

27.What was your greatest musical discovery?

I need to think about that. Maybe Bjork or Beck, though it wasn't the GREATEST in that sense of the word. Or Motley Crue, haha.

28.What did you want and get?

A little adult sensibility. Just a LITTLE.

29.What did you want and not get?

Flummoxed Fish? *rolls over laughing* This is getting to be a very amusing entry.

30.What was your favorite film of this year?

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, if you're talking about the favorite film the CAME OUT in 2005. But if you're talking about what I watched, then A Clockwork Orange is pretty damn good.

31.What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

On my ACTUAL birthday, I went to Kai's birthday party. Kinda funny isn't it?

But at what was the celebration of my own birthday, dinner at the Coffee Connosieur, where I had dinner served by my handsome waiter (*grin* I'm being rather nice about you, eh, Bert?). Very sweet, you darling Smubs. The amazing thing was that the MIA boys Ben, Lucas and Shaun were actually there.

32.What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?



33.How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2005?

I have a personal fashion concept?

34.What kept you sane?

Smubs, the 401 people, and others who played such important roles... people like the Parents, Jia, Liang, Mel (especially Mel during the whole DE stress saga!).

35.Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

I don't fancy celebrities - not my style.

36.What political issue stirred you the most?

Singapore has political issues? *chuckle* But Qiong's right. The Nguyen Tuong Van affair gave me something to think about.

37.Who did you miss?

Are you KIDDING me? Everyone!

38.Who was the best new person you met?

Woah. I met so many new people this year that I refuse to answer this question.

39.Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2005

Never refuse and invitation; never resist the unfamiliar.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year

I'll get back to you on that. It will take some thinking.

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 05:29 pm
[6 photographs developed.]


Thursday, 5th January '06

The Great Dehydrogenase Research Paper
(a.k.a. why us Rice People eat rice, not beer)


While Tzo researches restaurants, I research enzymes, it seems. In any case, the following is a product of:
- 4 months in Halifax watching Caucasians from North America / Oceania / Europe drinking their faces off,
- the ensuing shock-factor,
- the sudden meeting up with Singaporeans again in NYC,
- the resulting REVERSE shock-factor (read: Kiat's dreadful reactions to the first Coronas he bought in the USA. It was really quite frightening, I was honestly worried about anaphylactic shock or at least something equally gruesome - but I have an active imagination.),
- Vicki and my eavesdropping on Dal students' alcohol conversations on the Airporter,
- a Thursday afternoon without school,
- the complete lack of incentive to read for Secured Transactions tomorrow,
- a sudden urge that all those years of Biology and Organic Chemistry should not go to waste (though it HAS been a while since I was Bio and Chem Special Paper material, if ever, so please forgive the mistakes), and
- a Henghwa who is telling me that I'm mad for actually reading up on this and whom I will therefore spite by actually finishing this research.

Anyways, Tzo and I and someone else got into a wonderfully vague discussion about this in New York... and neither of us remembered what the enzymes were. And we just sort of assumed that the Asian lack of disposition to drinking was because we couldn't break down the alcohol. Actually that's not really true. But whatever it is, by the end of this we'll all have a genetic excuse to counter angmohs nagging about our "un-fun-ness".

By the way, I prefer to use the kind of IUPAC nomenclature we learnt for Organic Chem in JC, so the more common names I put in brackets behind. So here it goes:

The breakdown of alcohol, or more specifically, ethanol, occurs with the aid of a number of dehydrogenase enzymes. The first step in the breakdown is catalysed by a group of enzymes called alcohol dehydrogenases:

C2H5OH + NAD+ → CH3CHO + NADH + H+


Humans generally have at least 6 types of alcohol dehydrogenases, which exist in dimeric forms and are held in the stomach and liver linings. (The pictures are rather pretty, with all those nice alpha-coils in the proteins, heh). Each dimer contains 2 Zn2+ ions which, one of which hangs out around the catalytic site and encourages binding of the hydroxyl group in the ethanol, and thereby accelerates the reaction.
--> This paragraph is me being nerdy and giving a kitchen-sink answer, please ignore me.

The intermediate product (ignore the proton and NADH) is ethanal ("acetaldehyde"), which is further oxidised to ethanoic ("acetic") acid. This reaction is catalysed by acetaldehyde dehydrogenase, and also produces some other harmless molecules which I can't be arsed to properly work into the equation (NADH and H+, mostly, and some acetyl-CoA somewhere):

CH3CHO + [O] → CH3COOH


And I don't really know how the ethanoic acid is removed from the body. I'm going to assume for my current purpose that the ethanoic acid isn't going to give me or my liver any problems. It's just vinegar, after all.

So that's all fine and dandy. If everything goes according to plan. But if too much ethanol is going in at once, the acetaldehyde dehydrogenases don't quite seem to work as quickly as the alcohol dehydrgenases. This leads to an accumulation of ethanal in the blood stream. Ethanal, unfortunately, is far more toxic than the un-metabolised ethanol. And this results in one heck of a hangover. How cool. Hungover people can now say they have "ethanal poisoning" and make it sound somewhat legitimate.

And where does the Rice People part come in, you ask. Right about now, because of 2 little complications:

1. Alcohol dehydrogenases are particularly active in Asians. I haven't come across any reason for this, but I'll hazard a wild guess that it has something to do with a higher concentration of Zn2+ ions. Maybe our diet or something, I dunno. I could be very very wrong. What this essentially means is that we produce ethanal faster than then angmohs.

2. A gene mutation common in people of far-Eastern descent (Chinese and Japanese) results in the production of some screwed-up proteins. I say this figuratively, we all know that these globular proteins are ALWAYS literally screwed up. (As Mr Yap would say, the MolecuBes are Seepharicall. Heh. I miss Mr Yap.) But digression aside, this results in some screwed-up acetaldehyde dehydrogenases. They just don't work all that well. What this means is that we keep the ethanal around inside of us longer than the average angmohs.

So in summary:
Extra fast production of ethanal + extra slow removal of ethanal = a mother-lot of ethanal

Recall from above that ethanal causes hangover symptoms. When your body works like a Rice Person's, you can get so much ethanal in you so quickly after drinking that you get Severe and Immediate Hangover Symptoms. Such include a rapid increase in blood flow to the skin of the face, neck, and chest, rapid heartbeat, headache, nausea, and extreme drowsiness, otherwise recognisable as the "Kiat Chuan Reaction".

hehe Sorry Kiat. You were half the inspiration for this entry.

So that's why we never seem to get high / drunk in the fun, silly ways that the Caucasians do. Drunken fun comes from ethanol, but we don't retain ethanol very much. We go straight to retaining ethanal, which also means we go straight to being hungover. In more common parlance, we're allergic all the time. And my personal opinion is that this translates into the absence of a drinking culture. Tzo made an observation that it's no fun to drink when everytime someone starts, 40% of the people in the room abstain for allergic reasons. And then you learn to have fun without alcohol anyway. We're adaptable people wink. After a while its absence is completely not noticed - like at Kenneth's Alcoholess Christmas Party.

Except by Rice People who have lived in Halifax too long, it seems.

Poor Vicki.

---


[NB: references were mostly Wikipedia Organic Chem articles and a paper by the Indiana Alcohol Research Center]

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 04:49 pm
[10 photographs developed.]


Monday, 2nd January '06

NYC Blog

Not quite, actually. I'm too busy doing my laundry and overcoming my sleep debt to write anything for real. But in the meantime, I'm doing to a bit of a redirecting to the group blog for the Christmas in NYC trip: christmasnyc.blogspot.com.

Qiong's doing all the work on that blog really *paiseh*. On and off you'll find some little interjections from Ningz and myself. Tzo is holding off for a bit while Wenyuan nags her to start blogging on it and Vicki is just being anti-social as usual. big grin

In any case, I'm back in Halifax and home has become significantly more quiet than last term. *is sad* I don't have as good a feeling about the new people as I did with the old guys here at the Y. Primarily because I've been gone 11 days and someone has used half my laundry detergent. 他妈的。

en ying snapped a shot of life @ 06:57 pm
[1 photograph developed.]