Saturday, February 17, 2018

Black Panther

If it is not because of Chinese New Year, I will definitely skip Black Panther. It is overhyped, the trailer does not get me excited, and it only features a lone superhero: all the reasons to skip. In order to get myself working on those promotion forms, I decided to get my butt out of the house. And what else to do during CNY holiday when a lot of shops are not open other than watching movies.

Black Panther turns out to be great and exceeds my expectations. The plot is actually very simple and borderline lame for a movie instead of the usual convoluted superhero movies plot which tries hard too impress but end up confusing. Despite the simple plot, the movie does not feel draggy so all the "fillers" in between are actually well done and enjoyable. The story is also believable and the antagonist, Killmonger, has noble reasons for his actions instead of just mere revenge. Quite sad that he turns out to be an asshole as a person or otherwise he would be a good antagonist to like.

Wakanda's depiction is also awesome. Wakanda always has this mysterious charm even in the comics: hidden in Africa, has advanced technology due to vibranium, yet still have the spiritual mystic aspect with Bast the panther god. I am really wow-ed with the way the movie presents all these aspects: the African culture in the throne challenge scenes, Shuri's lab to show all the technology, and the ancestral plane scenes are gorgeous. All these are in stark contrast with the 'current' world that we live in with their scenes in Busan and that makes everything about Wakanda and the setting of the movie more realistic.

The action and fight scenes are exciting but I am not a fan of hand-to-hand combat and a single superhero movie as no matter how good the action scenes are, it will never be as good as having multiple superheroes fighting with different skills.

When I watched the trailer, I was worried if I could follow the African accent. Thankfully that was not the case when I watched the movie. I think the pace of the speech is not too fast and that makes it easier to follow. Subsequently I guess my brain just gets used to the accent and no problem in understanding.

While I think that the movie is great, it is still not enough to make me watch it again. One thing for sure though it gets me very hyped for Avengers Infinity War. April quickly come!!!

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Splurging on toys... again...

I actually had nothing that I wanted to buy when I went to check some toy shops at Plaza Singapura. At Movie Replica, I saw an Aladdin Christmas 2017 Ornament set for $70. I was almost tempted to buy I decided to check it out online first. I bought the Aladdin only at Mandarake in December and it should not be that expensive. The search for it cost me a few hundred dollars as I found more Aladdin things.

In the end I bought the ornament set for 2000 yen at Mandarake. I also ended up discovering new Aladdin stuff such as Aladdin & Jasmine Magic Carpet Ride by Lenox, Aladdin & Jasmine Hallmark Christmas ornament 2017, and Disney Enchanting Collection from Enesco. There are 3 Aladdin figures from Disney Enchanting Collection (Abu, Jafar & Iago, Aladdin & Jasmine). I checked out Amazon again and finally found a seller who ships internationally for Jim Shore's Aladdin & Jasmine Wedding. There is this random porcelain figurine from Tokyo Disney Resort and Aladdin WCF set as well.

With introduction of Amazon Prime in Singapore, shopping from Amazon gets a bit more troublesome now. Ordering from Singapore's Amazon Prime must be from mobile app and I am horrified that my phone is considered too ancient to support the app. Bleah.. Amazon US also removes the free shipping to Singapore although on the bright side the shipping fee is still very reasonable.

Let's wait another 1-2 weeks and I will be complaining about storage space when all these figurines arrive. Sigh..

I made an interesting discovery on Youtube on the presence of Japanese version of Disney songs sung by various male seiyuus. Apparently there are already 4 albums titled Disney Date ~Koe no Oujisama~ volume 1-4. Since only male seiyuus are featured, it is quite funny to hear the couple duets being sung by 2 males. Haha.. Reading the youtube comments are even funnier as people are imagining these songs as yaoi involving 2 anime characters from the series that the seiyuus have worked on. Anyway the songs have new arrangement so they are not direct copy paste of the Disney version so it is still interesting to listen. They feel quite J-Pop like rather than Disney like.

Final Fantasy Dissidia NT is out and I am really tempted to get the Collector's Edition. Yes I don't even have PS4 and I really want it just for the Warrior of Light bust and the artbook. I really regretted not pre-ordering as even if I just want to get the bust and the artbook, the prices from eBay sellers which split them are crazy. As a consolation, I only get the US game guide for now.

Anyway there is no need to play the game as people were very quick to upload the whole cinematic cutscenes from the game to Youtube. As compared to the PSP Dissidia, I feel that the story for NT is rubbish and too forced. It is cool to see the final battle when both the good and bad guys fight together to defeat Shinryu but before that they are just faking their fights to make Shinryu appear. What the heck man!! I am also not impressed that Squall simply goes missing from the "main" story sia.
All the cutscenes

Gotta admit that this is cooler than the very first Dissidia introduction but the transition from 1 scene to the next is too fast

National Steps Challenge had an event at Bishan Junction 8 this weekend. I decided to join since it is near home. I tried the Completers Challenge yesterday and I completed it in 4:44. What an awesome timing and I think I would not be in the top 100 to get anything. Haiz.. I actually did not expect that the challenge will be this physical so I was not in the right attire. My jeans kept dropping and I had to adjust it repeatedly during the burpees and crunches.
I have never even done 20 jumping burpees at one go in the gym sia..
I did the normal challenge today which essentially was going around the shopping malls to find 3 stamps and answer 2 questions. I had difficulty finding the board near Din Tai Fung as it was placed in between the 2 kiddy machines. The prize contained $5 subway voucher and a small towel. Waste of my time sia.. For completing the challenges, I got 4 chances to play the Timezone machines for chances to win even bigger prizes but the queue for both machines and for both games were too long so I could not be bothered.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Monster at work

OMG OMG OMG my prayer is answered. The staff who asked for flexible work arrangement did not require it anymore so there is no further need of Q & A, managing expectations, etc. Halleluya!! 

Today is the last day for another staff and I feel quite emo about it. I am just in this position for less than half a year and I already "sacked" 2 people. Sigh.. Although on paper, they resigned voluntarily, I knew the real reason is still because they cannot meet the job requirements despite all the time and effort spent on their training. Again it is not my fault but I cannot help but feel like I am the monster since I was the one doing all the communication for these unpleasant things. Haiz.. If I wanted, I could gave them more or longer chance but I know that is not fair for the rest to shoulder their incompetence. I serious really hate this fucking job. I get to do all these evil things, collect all the bad karmas and bad mouthing behind my back, and I get nothing in return.

After 2 months of peace, I suddenly received an email on Monday asking how I am progressing with my epic fail project. I was like what the heck. I did not even get any official feedback about my project and I am completely lost. The next day I received the same question from another person. Siao liao I know shit starts stirring again. With nothing official, I only know of hearsay that I am supposed to ask my clinic head for support for the project but I am not supposed to tell him that someone is asking me to ask him. I was like what the hell man. You are asking me to ask something on someone else's behalf when I don't know head or tail about this and I am not supposed to say why I suddenly ask this also. Man.. this is really a politic game that I wish to avoid.

I attended a workshop to prepare for staff appraisal this year and knowing more and more how things work here, I just get more and more demoralised. So an "upgrade" is for those who have shown mastery at current role while a "promotion" is for those who have potential to take up more shit. Thus "promotion" is not a reward for work well done because that reward is through yearly performance bonus. The sad thing is no matter how nice things are lined up, there is always an exception for the pets aka those that the bosses love. That just confirms my negativity that it does not matter how well I do my things because what ultimately matters is whether I am in the bosses' good book which I am not because I refuse to boot lick.

The only thing that keeps me sane this week is meeting my friend yesterday. I did not expect that she would be going home this CNY and I was expecting it would be a long time to ever meet her again after she got married and moved to Korea last year. I proposed to meet for dinner at Picnic at Wisma Atria. I have always wanted to try it and somehow the name that got stuck to my mind was Green Market. As I was working and my friend was there first, she was wondering where the heck Green Market was. Lol. Anyway the food there were quite expensive. I tried Omakase Burger with the Cheese Fries but at least they were filling.

Her niece was coming along so she was quite a distraction as she kept running around and we had to keep an eye for her. Not exactly a good thing for my mood as I was already tired with work and all that. But hey it is still a good thing that friendship does not change even after marriage. Lol.