Friday, February 26, 2016

A bit of luck

Sometimes people just need a little bit of luck or reward to turn things around. I was getting super bored playing Final Fantasy Record Keeper since the start of the year. I only played the events and skipped the main quests or daily grinding dungeons which means I only played 2-3x a week after the events were released. Things turned around at the latest FF XII. I was planning to used up my mithril and I got Vaan and Fran's unique weapons. Yay!! Since then I have been playing the main quests again and I have been spending time on it. I think once a gamer is forever a gamer. Once I am going full throttle with gaming, all the my other leisure activities take a back seat.

I am in the midst of doing my second photo book for my Japan trip and I have been procrastinating as I am still halfway through despite already started doing it since 2 weeks ago. This is only for a 40 page photo book. In comparison, it took me 2 weeks to complete the 80 page photo book for my Euro trip. I guess doing this for the second time kinda kills some of the excitement of using the software. The main problem, however, is I feel emo when I see my photos from Japan trip. Aaargh... the memory of the screwed up setting of my camera.. and the memory of my friend's bad photo taking skills. Sigh.. I really need and want to retake those pictures. I am aiming to finish this book before I am going to Australia next Friday but I don't know if I am able to.

Today I received a farewell/thank you gift from a student. That's my first ever and ironically, I am not even her preceptor o_0 I promise that I will never be a sucker for this kind of thing but I am not going to be a hypocrite to say that I don't feel happy to get such appreciation. Well, this kinda teaches me something: it is not a matter of what I do as a teacher but it is a matter of the student :) I am glad that my philosophy is right to do my best in teaching and not to expect anything in return. Because if my objective is to get a reciprocation from students, I think I will hate teaching by now.

Ok.. photobook now.. photobook...

Tuesday, February 16, 2016


There has been a lot of anticipation for Deadpool, right from the trailers a few months ago. The movie officially opened last week and thank goodness, it is a success and receives a lot of positive comments. Honestly, I am not really into Deadpool. I only know that he is somehow related to X-men, he is an anti-hero (rather than a superhero), and he is well known for his blabbering. It is the promotional material just before the Valentine's Day which won me over as I enjoy self-depreciating humour.

If you are like me and are looking for a superhero movie with plenty of humour, you will be somewhat disappointed. Deadpool feels more like a comedy with a superhero. For an R-18 movie, the superhero plot is surprisingly very childish. The movie is essentially telling about Deadpool's beginning and despite all the fights, Deadpool is simply looking for the guy who destroyed him to fix him. When he does not get what he wants, "bang!" there goes the bad guy.

With the rating, I am expecting a lot of gory spectacles in terms of the fighting and killing. I am more grossed out with the gore due to punching and kicking of the faces as the damage and blood is quite realistic. Those slow-mo bullet shots kinda downplay the level of goreness for the guns. Seeing decapacitated heads flying for the first time is quite disturbing but I am sort of too immune after that. I love realism and when you cut someone's head, blood will surely spurt from their neck like a fountain. Hmm.. it seems that the R-18 is not exactly for the violence.

So it is because of the sex? Well honestly, despite the boobs, butts, and the raunchy sex scenes, this is not a sex movie and the sex stuff is not that long/many. That means, the major reason for the rating will be with the number of times dicks, fucks, and shits being mentioned. I think these 3 words are really overused that there were things I missed because all I could hear were the dicks, fucks, and shits. I support the use of well-placed and well-intended curse words but this movie is really overusing them to the point that I feel that they just randomly include them as frequent as possible just to show that this movie is different from any other superhero movies.

In terms of the comedy, I think I had plenty of laughter. As I mentioned earlier, I like self-depreciating humour so I like the Green Lantern (movie failure) references. Those references to X-men will surely make you laugh too. However, there were moments when I felt bored and I thought that the movie was trying too hard to be funny. It is like there are 1001 jokes here so surely some will hit and some will miss. That explains why some people think that the movie is funny while others think that it is corny.

As a fan of both comedy and superhero genre, Deadpool mixes both genres well and I find it entertaining. However, I do think that the movie is over-rated by the fans and definitely it is not the best superhero movie out there. The action pales in comparison with other superhero movies, the plot is non-existent, and the humour may not be everyone's cup of tea. I maybe biased because my favourite superhero movie is still the first Avengers movie: great action scenes and humour that stems from well-timed sarcastic comments peppered here and there. But to remove any bias-ness, I always go back to the same one question if a movie is indeed that good: do I want to watch it for the second.. third.. fourth... times? Unfortunately, my answer for Deadpool is a no. 

Sunday, February 14, 2016

WaT... the... T_T

I don't know if people are spending their angpaus or it is because of Valentine's Day but I noticed that the restaurant queues were long throughout the day. Flowers, balloons, gifts, romantic meals.. they are reminders that being single is an informed choice that I consciously make. I still can't imagine cracking my head to plan for these "sweet" things. Sigh.. Will I change? Or will I be able to find a girl who is not into these kinds of time wasting activities? Well, for now, I will enjoy Valentine's Day with the one who truly loves myself, no matter how moody, how fat, how irritating, and how (insert all negative adjectives that you can think of) I am: myself.

This morning I came across the news that WaT is disbanding. Aih... I don't know why I feel sad as I thought they were already disbanding since long time ago anyway. WaT has a special place during my university days and I actually have their albums and singles until 2008. In fact, I still use their song Ready Go! as my alarm tune in my K800i phone. After that, they seemed to disappear and I was not aware that they were on a hiatus. They came back in late 2015 only to announce that they are disbanding this year. I will definitely miss their music. Although their songs do not exactly have memorable tunes, they are pleasant to the ears and when listening to them, my mood becomes relaxed and happy.
The final single.. I have to admit that I find this so so only.

From my friend's facebook wall, I discovered about AKB48's latest single: Kimi wa Melody. I was pleasantly surprised to see old members again, especially Tomomi Itano on the first few second. What is going on with AKB48 nowadays?? Hmm.. apparently their latest single failed to hit 1 million sales on their first week and that was seen as a sign of dipping popularity. I guess the management finally realise that no way AKB48 will survive in the long run and at the rate they keep getting the old members back, it seems that they are getting desperate. The video for the latest single looks gorgeous: pretty girls, gorgeous kimonos, colourful display. What more can we ask for? The moment I read that the person behind this is the same one behind Heavy Rotation, I am not amazed with the amount of fanservice that will happen.
Very pretty MV.. if only the song is as catchy as Heavy Rotation..

And talking about Heavy Rotation, I just found out about the existence of the video below. He sings very well and surprisingly the song still sounds pretty nice when sung by a guy.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Home for CNY

Because in the end Air France completely ignored my email for ticket cancellation and refund, I ended up spending my first CNY home since 2002. People always ask me if I am celebrating and it is always very irritating to answer that I only want the angpaus. I dislike the visiting since I meet my closer relatives pretty frequently even without the need of any special occasions. The thought of going home this time was also more because my dad's birthday happened to fall on Sunday.

As it was in the past, my only impression of CNY is: it is tiring. It is even more tiring this time as I had to fly again at the end of the day. I feel so tired that I am only spending today resting at home. I intended on going to Thomson Plaza for the cash deposit machine but I was too tired and lazy for that. Bleah.. At least I am done with the unpacking.

Yesterday I had a nice surprise of an upgrade to Premium Economy for my flight back. Yaaay!! I guess that helped to reduce my irritation a little bit over my cancelled flight. I honestly do not see myself paying for Premium Economy as the only difference with normal economy are just: more comfortable seat, noise cancelling headphone, and 1 bottle of Evian. Since the headphone is attached to seat, I believe it is not sterilised until each passenger -unlike the lousy headphone that we usually get in Economy class. I can also live without the bottled water as I can always request it from the cart. So yeah, I don't know why someone will pay about 2x more just for the more comfortable seat. Well, I still enjoy the experience nonetheless. Hehe.. Oh ya, the food is also the same as the economy class. Lol..

I notice the promotion to Jakarta until 27 March so I believe Air France is no longer flying this route after that. I try both April and July and there is no flight to book. Sigh.. I will definitely miss it and I need to find another airline now. This CNY trip is actually the first time I experienced Air France flights which were relatively full. Too bad they only served French sandwiches for both the trips. In the past, I always got meals consisting of bread, salad, cake, etc.

For the first time, I also bought liquors from Duty Free Shop in the airport. I got the 'idea' because I thought it would take quite sometime to wait for the baggage from a full flight so I could spend sometime shopping. I bought a 200ml Baileys Irish Cream ($10) and a pack of 3 x 50ml Choya Umeshu ($12.80) which consists of 1 bottle of Extra Years, Extra Shisho, and Royal Honey. The cashier told me if I wanted to buy 5 more bottles before reaching the Duty Free limit. How I wish I can!! Haha.. I don't really enjoy drinking and I have noone to drink with. Otherwise I will buy the bigger bottles which are cheaper too. I was actually very interested in the Baileys Irish Cream Chocolate but it was only available as 1L bottle for $20 something. Well, let's enjoy them during the coming Valentine's Day with myself. Lol.

Meanwhile, wishing everyone for a great and prosperous year of the Fire Monkey.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Down.. and further down..

I am not a huge fan of travelling. Not only it sucks my money dry, I extremely hate it when I have to be the one doing the planning. Being perfectionist becomes a weakness as it is very stressful to consider so many factors. I settled the flight last week and while the prices had gone up as compared to when I checked them out in December, at least the timing remains. It was not very stressful. The hotel booking, however, is extremely more complicated. I have to consider price, room type, location, accessibility, presence of tour bus pick up, website to purchase from, any credit card promotion or discount, etc.

In the end, I focused on Agoda and Expedia. For the hotel at Darwin, there was no problem deciding as only Expedia had available rooms for booking. The headache was for the hotel in Sydney: same hotel and same search configuration but Agoda stated ok for room A but no for room B while Expedia stated the complete opposite. Agoda is nice to have free cancellation policy so I decided to book there first. However, when I realised that I could get 10% off at Expedia because of my credit card, I immediately called Expedia to clarify about the room. The service was superb as the customer service guy called the hotel directly and documented their conversation etc in the booking. So yeah, sorry Agoda, I had to cancel and buy from Expedia instead.

Nothing good lasts forever and it seems that AirFrance is going to end their Jakarta-Singapore destination soon. My holiday plan for Chinese New Year is completely ruined as the return flight on Tuesday is cancelled and I am put on Wednesday flight. I can't afford to return on Wednesday because of my work commitment. Sigh.. I booked for a Tuesday flight and they only informed me about this forced change in the e-ticket. It is partly my fault for not checking the e-ticket when I bought it in August last year. I mean who would expect that a flight that you just booked, paid, and everything went through is just cancelled like that. I called and contacted their facebook to hope for cancellation of my trip and full refund but was rejected. Enquiry through their website has not been responded also. Bleah.. I am utterly disappointed.

3 days later, I received another messages for changes to my April flights: they are both rescheduled to Garuda Indonesia flights. Win liao lo.. I think they will seriously close this route. Although the rescheduled timings become earlier and more favourable to me, I still prefer an enjoyable half-empty flights with AirFrance :( Very very disappointed.

Today is also the last day of one of my staff and my colleague. It is quite sad for me as she is the first staff whose OJT I undertook and she has been doing pretty well that at the end of all this, I can proudly say that I am proud with my trainee. She will be an air stewardess and I am happy (and jealous) that she finds a greener pasture. Sigh.. With more and more colleagues leaving, I realise how much I hate my job and the only thing that keeps me hanging on is the colleagues.

I thought my mood will improve this evening in anticipation of the arrival of my photobook. It becomes another frustrating experience as I received someone else's photobook!! I know something is bound to go wrong when I receive 2 different tracking numbers for 1 order. Sigh.. I feel bad for the other person and I wonder is s/he will ever receive his/her order. It is a photobook of a child's birthday party wor.. I am also concerned if my own pictures can also be sent to the wrong address and strangers will have my photos. Sigh..

Dumb fucking shit keeps happening to me.. No wonder my resting heart rate can be 101.