Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Being kiasu and perfectionist is bad combination. I know that I am feeling stressed out of nothing and for nothing but I can't help it. I think it is just my personality that once I am doing something, I want to make sure that it is well done and possibly to achieve some results (eg. awards, competitions, publications, etc). I do not want to put in effort for something only for the sake of doing something. Bleah..

At work, I am the representative for medication safety and customer service. Thanks to my kiasu and perfectionist nature, even though it is never stated, I take every matters pertaining to medication safety and customer service as my "responsibility". When something goes wrong, I take it as my personal failure. This makes me very stressed. You know, with an average of 600 patients in a day, there are tonnes of opportunities for complaints. Assuming an average of 5 items per patient, there is 3000 possibilities of medication errors which could happen. Sigh.. To make things worst, both of these are audit-able and audits are making me more stressed.

Sigh.. starting with the good news, it seems that my branch passed the customer service audit: both the mystery shopper and phone audits with 98% and 94%. Wow.. That simply exceeded my expectations. Okay here comes with the next string of bad news. Firstly, my branch is no longer the least for the number of dispensing errors. Sigh.. I know with 3000 opportunities to make mistake in a day, it will be impossible to get 0 error. Thus my aim is to make sure that we make the least as compared to others. Bah! Secondly, even though not the lowest, my branch fared quite miserably in terms of customer feedback forms. My branch has 11 as compared to 99 for the top scorer. Faints.. I honestly hated soliciting feedback!!

The jackpot was: a complaint via a feedback form. Okay, that is the worst nightmare not only for me but for all. Honestly, I am not so anal about customer service because it is really not easy to be positive all the time when you face hundreds of negative people everyday. It is always a matter of bad luck for you to get a complaint. Ironically, those who are perpetually rude never get complained. It is always the nicer people who got complained when they had a bad day.

I personally got my very first complaint within my first week of work. Lol.. Lucky it was only verbal complaint. It was because of me sounding irritated and rude. Well, the couple should blame themselves for not being able to speak English! Hello, this is Singapore! So yup, I am quite alright if the complaint is about "sounding rude etc". But when I watched the video of this complaint incident, I could not really fault the person who wrote in. My staff actually "threw" the medicines on the table. Wah piang.. Still, I think my poor staff is just unlucky to get an unreasonable person. From the feedback, I think the person was already biased against foreigners so I think that was actually the root cause of the complaint. Oh well..

Now I still have a medication safety initiative to think about. Again, this project is actually not mine. BUT, as the name contains "medication safety", it is like "by default" falls under my responsibility as the medication safety champion. T_T God save me!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Final Fantasy Cold Cast Collection

Final Fantasy Cold Cast collection is another limited edition collectible which was released in 1999. It consists of 5 statues from Final Fantasy IV to Final Fantasy VIII. These statues are unique because they are diorama i.e they depict memorable scenes from the respective games, while most Final Fantasy figures often focus on the characters or the summons. Only 3000 figures were made for each statue. Each figure comes with a card with a serial number although unfortunately the serial number is not indicated on the base of the figure itself. Each figure also come with a unique "holder" to hold the serial card for display.

I am not sure about the original price (it was nowhere printed on the box) but I read somewhere that it was about 3500 Yen each. FF V and FF VI statues are the most commonly on sale and the price can go up to 300-400 USD on eBay for mint-in-box figures. Yup that is almost 10x of the original price!! FF VII statue could go up to 700 USD on eBay even for a damaged one -_-" However, for once, FF VII is not the rarest. I have never seen FF IV statue being sold and have only seen FF VIII statue being sold once on eBay with final bid close to 600 GBP. Wew..

I only own FF V, FF VI, and FF VII figures. I don't know whether I will ever be able to complete the set seeing how rare they appear on the resale market. I bought FF V and VI on impulse with a combined price of 18500 yen. I said it on impulse because I did not really scrutinise the photo to realise that the items were without boxes, serial cards, serial card "holders", and worst part was damaged. Haiz.. Well, comparing to 300-400 USD each, seeing a bidding price of less than 20000 yen for both just knocked my senses away.

My FF VII figure is complete with everything, except for 1 part broken. I bought it for 21000 Yen and that was together with an FF Chrome Lenna figure (FF Chrome is another FF collection which I am not so interested in collecting). Considering FF Chrome is usually sold for more than 5000 yen each individually, the "package" that I got is not too bad, especially considering I saw one damaged FF VII figure alone sold for 30000+ Yen in late 2012 or the usual 600-700 USD on eBay.

Final Fantasy V: Butz and Boko
Can't remember the scene (perhaps I need to replay the game? Haha) but I think it could be at the beginning of the game. The figure represents Butz and his faithful chocobo, Boko, setting a campfire and relaxing in the woods. It is about 11cm wide and 9cm tall.

I absolutely love the details of the forest, complete with the canopy and the "shadow" effect. Suprisingly, Boko is more outstanding in appearance than Butz here. Haha.. The "holder", which I did not have, is actually the nicest among the five figures because it is a tree-trunk to match the forest theme. Initially, I was excited when I found that "Damn cool.. Boko can twist around" but the excitement turned into tears when I realised that this was because his legs were broken T_T

Front view
Aerial view
Back view
Close up of Butz
Close up fo Boko.. Love the canopy but the shadow makes Boko ugly in pictures!
The base.. Grr.. I prefer serial number to that "made in China" tag!
Boko's broken legs T_T
Final Fantasy VI: Opera House
This depicts the scene of Celes, as Maria, throwing away her bouquet in the Opera Maria and Draco. The top of the left tower was chipped and I did not realise it in the seller's pictures :( Cries.. I only feel "so-so" towards this figure. Haha.. Not really a fan of FF VI or Celes. The figure is 7cm wide and 13 cm tall.
"Default" display pose
If I move Celes around

Close up of Celes
Aerial view.. Look at THAT bloody broken spire on the left!

The details of the bricks are nicely done
The base
Final Fantasy VII: Forgotten City
I am usually an anti-overrated FF VII but I have to admit that this figure is dead gorgeous!! It represents perhaps the most "memorable" event in the whole FF universe: Aerith's death. The branches are extremely fragile and it will be so lucky to have none broken. Luckily, I can glue mine perfectly and it still looks perfectly okay. Take a look at the pictures below and try to guess where the broken branch is. Instead of the chibi version of the characters like what they do with FF V and VI figures, Cloud and Aerith look more human and I have to say they resemble the in-game sprite very closely. They look gorgeous and the part of dipping into the water is just brilliant! No wonder the price is like that..

The box is surprisingly huge at 22cm (L) x 19.5cm (H) x 17cm (W). The figure itself is about 13cm tall and 12cm wide.
The box still looks pristine
The full set
Nice stone.. But I still prefer FF V's tree trunk (which I don't have!)
Now you know why the branches are brittle.. Even the tree trunks are also brittle.
Aerial view.. The water effect is nice, isn't it?
Back view
Close up on Aerith
Close up on Cloud
I have no memory on this structure in the game..
The base
Can you tell which is the broken branch?
Since I doubt I will get the other two, I will just say what they are. FF IV figure displays the scene at Mt Ordeals where Dark Knight Cecil turns into Paladin. FF VIII figure displays Squall & Rinoa "Waltz of the Moon" at Balamb Garden scene (T_T I am dying to get this as an FF VIII fan!). Wish me luck to get this two!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Hansel and Gretel Witch Hunters

This is another classic fairy tale turned into a Hollywood blood-fest action movie. I am interested in this right from the very first time I saw the trailer. Well, looking at ladies going badass (headbutts, fist fights, crossbow, and guns) always excites me! Haha..

The story is quite simply an "extension" the fairy tale. Hansel and Gretel, as children, found the witch's candy mansion, got trapped, before finally outwitting and roasted the witch. They were unable to find their parents and from they onwards, they live as witch hunters. Many years after the event, they unknowingly returned to their town of origin upon the mayor's request. Children have been abducted by witch(es) and our witch hunters are tasked to retrieve the kids alive. From here, we come across various witches, an aspiring witch hunter, and a bigger witches plot which also revealed "missing" past of our heroes.

Honestly, the movie kinda sucks. The story telling is pretty atrocious. How did Hansel and Gretel find out their past? The evil grand witch, Muriel, TOLD them -__-" The antagonist actually also revealed her evil plan. Isn't that pretty dumb? The only investigation that Hansel and Gretel ever do is to find the witches' last target.Okay, perhaps that is forgivable. After all, I know this would be bad right from the start and the main pull was actually the action. Unfortunately, even the action scenes left me unsatisfied. Phew..

I expected Ben to be Gretel's boyfriend and Mina to be Hansel's girlfried. I was wrong. I have no idea why they are in the movie in the first place since they serve no purpose. Bah.. Okay perhaps Ben is there only to wipe Gretel's boobs and Mina is to show off her naked butt. The only good acting here belongs to Gretel who showed a wide range of emotions such as being badass, being trashed by the evil people, being vulnerable, being worried in search of his brother, being curious to know her past, etc.

So yup, this is nowhere near "Hawkeye vs Jean Grey" that Marvel fans imagine. Haha.. For your info, Hansel is played by the same guy as Hawkeye in Marvel: The Avengers and Muriel is played by Jean Grey in X-men movie trilogy.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Being toy-ed around :(

My Kingdom Hearts Play Arts Soras were successfully sold yesterday!! Yay!! One part of me feels very happy to be able to get rid of them to give more storage space. The other part of me feels very emo and regrets about it. Perhaps I should not have bought it at all. I was actually very excited when I got them in 2011. The excitement disappeared after I discovered that they were bootlegs. I thought the price was cheap because they were 2nd hand items. I was wrong.. Ignorance is a bliss.. If I don't know about them being bootlegs, perhaps I will still be happy to keep them.. However, if I were not ignorant and able to differentiate bootlegs Play Arts, perhaps I would not even be bothered to buy them in the first place :( I bought them for $30 each but they were both sold for a total of $15 only. Yep.. $45 for stupidity..
This is the third item (yep, I consider them as one item) I managed to sold off eBay. Seriously I am a pathetic businessman. Oh well, I am selling these things as I need more space and not to make money anyway.. But I think I am really timid as a seller. Sigh.. Usually seller has the rights to pick up the meeting point and timing but usually I am too accomodating so that I can get rid of the items a.s.a.p. Yesterday was my worst experience so far. The buyer came 45 minutes late from the agreed timing!! Zzz..

Previously I told myself that once I am able to complete all five Final Fantasy VIII Transcendent Artists Collection, I will stop all these toys online shopping craze. Looks like it is difficult to stop the habit after checking eBay daily for the past many months. Sometimes my fingers are still itchy and I will browse Yahoo! Japan auction sites. Of course the end result is me being more and more emo.

I am emo because I have to restrain myself from buying things as I really have no more storage space. What breaks my heart more is when I find cheaper price for the things I already own. I nearly fainted when I saw an auction for all six FF VIII Kotobukiya Scale 1/6 with starting price 7000 yen. 2 days left and nobody bidded on that. Sigh.. I think in the end it could have been half, or even a quarter of what I spent to complete the same set previously.

If only I can turn back time..
If only I have more money..
If only I have my own house and my room so that I am not running out of space..
If only I never like these things..
I will be much happier these days.. :(

Monday, January 21, 2013


It's emo time. I never like my job right from the start and I am simply working because, well, everybody needs to work. I tried to learn to love my job but it seems that everything at work is making me more disillusioned day by day.

Today I feel very pissed. I just realise that I will be having a meeting in 1 month time. Okay, to be fair, the date has been decided since November last year. But at that time, I had no 2013 calendar yet so I did not mark that down in the calendar and I completely forgot about it. I only realised about it today when my outlook calendar sent me a notification.. yup.. 1 month before the actual date. And I realised that last week I already said okay to my colleagues to take leave on that day. As much as possible, we can't have 2 people on leave at the same day. But that day happens to be one of their birthday! Come on! Who will be so heartless to make someone work on their birthday right?

So yeah, I informed the meeting leader that I won't be attending. Of course things turned ugly lah. I tried to reason with her and tried to blackmail her (lol!). The reason is really because another person is having her birthday ma.. There is no conclusion in the end. I did not ask for a permission but I was informing. She did not gave a permission either. What I can't understand is why make other people's life so difficult? I am like the lousiest shit among all so would it make a difference whether I attend or do not attend? There is NO difference. But there is a huge difference for someone who is having a birthday. Birthday is a once in a year thing.. Okay, your xxth birthday is a once in a lifetime thing!

Sigh, I am still hoping for a miracle that God will change her mind to let me off.. Otherwise, it really speaks volume about what kind of a person you are.. My colleague is fine about sacrificing her birthday but I am NOT fine with that!! Personally, I would not like if similar thing happens on my birthday so I do not wish the same thing happens to someone else..

Bleah.. working sucks sucks sucks..

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Final Fantasy VIII Transcendent Artist's Collection: Squall & Bahamut

Squall is the main guy but ironically, his statue has the smallest box measuring about 33cm (L) x 31cm (H) x 19cm (W) and has the lowest retail price of 19800 yen (the other figures were priced at 24800 yen). Despite having the smallest box, the figure is actually of comparable size with the rest.

Sadly, this is my least liked statue among the five and there are many reasons for that. Firstly, I find the choice of colours are dull (black, grey, dark red) and with Squall's white undershirt as the only light colour. Visually, it simply pales in comparison to the rest. Secondly, the figure fails to convey the majesty of Bahamut (who is supposed to be the greatest summon or the King of Eidolons) and that is a big waste. The other GFs are better except for half-sliced Odin. Squall's pose is actually kinda cool but when you display the statue, Squall is actually facing down! Just a minor detail but the way he is holding the gunblade is also akward, if not unnatural. Instead of having both palms grabbing his gunblade, his left hand is actually grabbing his right wrist. Bleah.. The worst part is that when I display the figures, Seifer & Odin statue compliments Rinoa & Siren statue better than Squall & Bahamut statue!

Similar to Rinoa & Siren statue, the original packaging makes Squall's gunblade very prone to damage. Inside the box, the heavy Bahamut statue is actually resting against Squall's delicate gunblade. For that reason, I own 2 Squall & Bahamut statues: 0438 is undamaged and 0453 is damaged. Sigh.. I regret not returning the damaged one (together with the damaged Rinoa & Siren) to get my USD 900 back.. Boohoo!! Anyway, even the undamaged 0438 is also not perfect as the serial card is lost.. Haiz.. Faints..

Enough of rants.. Picture time!!
Front side of the packaging box
Back side of the packaging box
Top side of the packaging box
Serial card
The other side of the serial card
Unboxing.. Only 2 parts: Squall and Bahamut.. See how Bahamut is resting against the gunblade
The statue and the packaging box
 Close-ups of the figures now

Let's compare 0438 and 0453 side by side. Are they exactly the same?