take a walk around town with...

Friday, December 31, 2004

just came back not too long from sending handbag off.

of special mention - thunderbutt came with w.p. and the pug! colin and his girl, mokhtar were there as well. handbag's mom was pretty nice to talk to too; she's just like my own mom, telling him to upgrade to a car instead when he gets back; eating and getting himself fatter (i think "less skinny" would be more appropriate here), amongmst other things. his sister was there too, as some of his swimming chums were too.

gave one of these to him at the airport, as a parting gift...

on the way back, this being new year's eve, it's a good time to set my new year resolutions in concrete form.

1. stay single. love my bike. don't get tempted to start any relation with anyone.

2. regimenting my life; sticking to my military-inspired timetable. sounds somewhat crazy, but it's good to be able to manage things efficiently. reveille tomorrow at 0800 hrs.

3. proper budgetting. easy to say, hard to do. but if i don't start, i'll never start!

4. take good care of my platoon and lead them successfully for a one-year tour of duty. oops, i mean, take good care of my form class, and bring them successfully in our own ways through the 2005 academic year...

5. stop at every red traffic light, be a better and safer cyclist. parents are always on the lookout!

as i was talking to jothi, my neighbour, i said something that i never thought of before. the mental burden that had troubled me for the past day, becoming a primary two form teacher, now seems so much lighter now. it is akin to getting commissioned as an officer (i was only a corporal in national service) and taking charge of my platoon (my class). not exactly imaginative, but indeed i have been commissioned by the ministry of education to do my best for the kids.

long live saf! and my kids too!

handbag will be exported to purdue tonight, transit via tokyo.

i woke up later, after 1pm today, because of some queer fatigue that overpowered me. packed my stuff that i wanted to leave in office, and cycled off. when i reached the school, i was greeted by the already-locked school gates.

damned, why didn't anyone tell me the school closes that early on a friday? ok, maybe it's because of new year's eve. so i thought of going in via the secondary school side, since there's gate that links both premises together. as i was pushing the bike and approaching the security guard at the secondary school foyer, she was already desturing for my bike to be put away when i was more than 10 meters away from her. and that's even before i had the chance to open my mouth to ask if i could go through the school premises... why was the reaction so automated when she saw the bike? i was reminded of the old togoparts post where some security at the esplanade was hustling a cyclist away and saying, "no bikes allowed"...

just sharing a grouse that i have today... was it a security policy for all bikes to be kept out because they could harbour some explosives? was it because i'm a new face at the school?

urgh. next thing to worry is to wonder how i'm gonna leave my bike in school when term opens. thankfully my school's sports secretary also cycles to school... PHEW!

will be going to the soka association headquarters later today to donate the clothes, thanks to information on sivasothi's habitatnews tsunamirelief page. last thing i would want to face is to go down in a cab with 8+ bags of clothing to a donation centre, and getting a "nope, enough clothings now, you can go now" greeting, and having to go back with the same stuff, paying twice the cab fare... you get the idea.

last night when dad saw some of those old but unworn clothings that i took out for donation, he remarked that those unworn ones could have been given to distant relatives back in hainan island. i don't think he's wrong, but i suggested, "but they're not the ones whose homes have been washed away by the tsunami..."

thereafter, he went to check for some clothings to give away instead.

Thursday, December 30, 2004

just learnt that i'll be doing primary 2 english, maths and pe at the school. as a form teacher! OMG!

my fellow pe department mates were really nice to talk to, and discuss matters with. i'm sure we will have a ball of a time together!

by the way, i cleared out just over 2 big bags of old t-shirts that i'm giving away to the tsunami relief efforts. can you imagine, having your homes washed away by the tsunami, and having nothing else to wear other than the most likely tattered clothes already worn on the body?

this is the least i could do, i suppose. will follow up with a cash donation next month on payday.

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

republishing what janice wrote...

    guys, if you are organising donation of supplies or cash, here is a link to where to send material or make donations to:

    also, some friends of mine are collecting clothing of all sizes to donate to the quake/tsunami victims. please bring what you have to:

    blk 53 marine terrace, marine parade family centre by fri 5pm.

i'll bring down my tees, runners have plenty of them.

for those of you who want to see some of the footage already shown on tv, the actual clips, you can get them here - right click and use "save as".

phuket footage
patong footage
sri lanka footage

presenting the camera that's older than me. ever seen this?

this is the kodak brownie fiesta camera, in circulation from 1962 to 1965. this was passed down from my mom's side of the family. wow!

had a pleasant time at chek jawa yesterday. first time seeing sea pens on the southern sandbar, but uh, they looked pretty dead by the state they were in. but better than not seeing them.

on monday itself, i met up with ken, who was gracious enough to pass me two livestrong bands, one youth-sized, one adult-sized when i popped by his place to pass him his photos from sunday. so the smaller band went over to eugenia, who stays around my area... speaking of which, her blog is next to uh... in deep sleep...

Monday, December 27, 2004

these past few days were kind of draped over with sad stuff, despite it being yuletide season.

sylvester has passed on, news being carried via straits times. actually, one riding chum of mine told me that he apparently passed away on christmas eve.

then last night, the news of the tsunami that hit so many asian countries. this is one of the many reports that came in... forces of nature, man has no chance against it. yesterday while i was at macritchie, i didn't feel a thing. probably the generally softer ground took out the tectonic plate's vibrations, though folks at toa payoh, and other "regular places" felt the shake-up. photos of the aftermath are shown online by mr hellmut issels, at his pbase gallery.

had went to macritchie to shoot the ultramarathon yesterday morning, thankfully those self-imposing, gatecrash happy folks from you-know-where didn't pop around. to call themselves sports photographers when they were shooting cookie-cutter photos from the same place, anybody with a camera can do, too! witness and i had a long slow walk into macritchie to do up the shots. not the best photos, i'll say, but nevertheless much better than what i came up with last year.

went for the chek jawa ojt trip (my 2nd) in the afternoon, and i was attached to ria. bad thing was, i missed out a fair load of stuff, listening to how she explains stuff to the participants, because i need to learn as much as i can! *frets* on the bright side, i got a better understanding of where wildsingapore, rmbr, toddycats!, gvn, nature society of singapore, and nature photo society all are, how they are different from each other. phew! what a mouthful!

Sunday, December 26, 2004

just came back just past midnight from gorilla's place, where we (handbag, alwyn + ee lee, melisa, debster + banz, gorilla + angie, jiahui and me) had a class get-together.

one of the most horrific stuff that was talked about before hui got there, was furthering studies. mentions of $60+k loans were heard - and total cost of probably $80k-ish were heard - did i get a shock or what. i know that further education is good yada yada, but is it practical, i ask? word has that singapore is trying to be an education hub, guess where a good lot of the gnp comes from. education loans, if i'm not mistaken. each university student from an average family, will probably be 20k. multiply for each year's intakes at the different varsities, polytechnics and universities, it sounds to me like a massive lot of money contractually pledged to the bank. then for those with young families, or worse still, those with young infants, it's a frigging stressful fight to service insurance, the housing loans, the study loans... and servicing all those loans, is money that we call, "take-home pay".

sounds cheerful? not to me. it's akin to credit card usage, by any other terms. i would rather stay as a "farmer" as opposed to "occifer", and stick to my bike when it's done. as i so wrote before, i long for the feeling of getting away from it all, on two wheels.

thank God for biking. Amen

Friday, December 24, 2004

went out with kommissar on a ride to nature's niche where i got something (not telling what it is... it's meant to be a surprise), then we popped by the dempsey road area. twa was nearly closed, so we stopped by trek3 tanglin. almost closed too. so we headed for east coast park, and while we were outside le meridien, edmund's pal, bala (was that his name?) happened to be just the chap on the scooter right in front of us!

we had dinner at blk 85, as per normal, all in all, only 55k on the bike for the whole week. maybe a bit more, but i doubt so. getting lazy...

by the way, i was bored, so here's something to share... presenting my lens hood...

q: what did santa say when he visited lee hsien loong's?...

a: "ho ho ho.... ching!"

tell me, what should i get for a xmas xchange kind of class gathering... i'm sweating puddles over this...

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

kommissar bugged me enough, so here's something to share... akan datang, kinesis in the process...

current components i have on hand for the buildup. sram x7/9 mix, xt front
derailleur, oury lockjaw grips and of course the frame.

one look at the cuuuuurves on the chainstays makes a convert of riders

Monday, December 20, 2004

sold off the old shorty stem to sam, a filipino who stays at hougang avenue 8 for 10 bucks, and the energizer wheelie for 2.50 to chin today.

met this other ride who was riding a diamondback at tiong hin... was i surprised to see that the frame having a kinesis sticker on the seat-tube! seems like this page shows even more names that gives kinesis some additional creditability too!

anyway, i collected my pink card on friday morning. yippee!

saturday was a bumming day for me. ditto for sunday.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

tuesday night was the night that i gazed, touched and fondled all over her. her name? guess it from looking at a picture of her and tell me?

last night i went to ram's shop to meet up with subzero27 and kommissar, since subzero27 was telling me about this creaking sound from the heds he bought from wildcat and we agreed to meet up so that i could take a look at it. boy, the wheels were pretty bashed up. ram had probably one of the worst wheels he tried to true for a long long time. imagine, over 4 hours into the wheels, but the rims were still not 99%, as he put it in his own words. now i wonder if it's a big mistake for me to endorse the wheels...

the wheels were worked on at about 9+pm, we left the shop at 2+ am. i feel really sleepy now...

it's true, what ram said. you've gotta have the passion to do something, before you can do it well. now...

realized too, that i've a sense of dedication in me - especially after sleeping onlt word in the night, for division cmannander's coc this friday - and tired or not, i still pushed on, stressing meself...

Sunday, December 12, 2004

yesterday was a visit to kusu, and i paired up with jani (read, yanni, same as the greek new age musician) for the reefwalk. had a fair bit of fun - the highlight must have been the octopus, with a head probably the size of a child's fist! this was my first close encounter seeing anything like this in singapore - unfortunately, the participants missed it all, because they went to wash up.

couple of jellyfish were also spotted, along with the usual corals, and other stuff. damned, didn't bring my camera, so i can't remember what i saw.

today i was guiding at chek jawa, as an ojt trainee. met ruying, one of my old old friends from vjc. apparently she was as surprised as i was, since she was only on her third day working with safra. earlier in the day while cycling out to changi village, i met harlequin birdspotting... shan't say the location, to keep the mystery about where he was. *wink*

on the way back home, i had this unpleasant encounter with this female driver, with her companion. when i took down her plate number, she alleged that if her car gets damaged, you-know-who is to blame. she also called in the police, of which i was all the more waiting for. as a responsible cyclist, i can't allow this kind of intimidation to carry on... furthermore, she said in front of the policemen, that probably i was thinking she being of a "weaker sex", i was taking advantage of the situation. huh? sorry. she said it, not me. she told me not to cycle on the roads. i didn't want to make a fool out of her, and tell her that we're not supposed to be on the pavements...

take a look here if you have the time...

Friday, December 10, 2004

vicky was my swim coach for the day, but her assessment for me was fairly alright technique, but needs a lot of work in the speedwork and strength departments.

went to rsm's place to get some work done. hopefully the flash presentation can be finished on time...

Monday, December 06, 2004

just finished we were soldiers, and i must say, i haven't watched anything that makes me really think about my role in the army. reminds me of robert capa, a legendary lensman who died while covering war in vietnam, if i'm not mistaken.

Sunday, December 05, 2004

bout of flu on friday. felt horridly fatigued in the morning, felt pooped in the afternoon. went back home early to get some early dinner, and sought dr koh in the evening.

by saturday i recovered, but wasn't well enough to go to khairul's wedding. so i stayed at home, and did some further rearrangement of my stuff. dad and mom had just come back from hainan island, so it's a renewed rush to get things done. night-time was the time when i decided to go ahead and take photos at the marathon. smart choice!

the marathon today was my testbed for covering an event on a bicycle. obviously, i wasn't going to balance myself on the bicycle and take photos simultaneously... and boy, was i glad i went to take photos at the event or what...

i have some of my selected shots posted on this thread on clubsnap, do take a look...

Thursday, December 02, 2004

firefox is good. i'm making the switch. will give comments about it soon...

try entering, "about:mozilla" in the address box. the same old easter egg still works...

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

went over to rodalink east coast to submit the polygon bike frame design entry, since yesterday was the closing date... then i met desmond there, and he invited me to ride coastal with him. i thought it'd be fine.

i had hard time riding (accounting for my morning run of 7+ k, plus cycling to camp, plus two rounds of nee soon camp on bike on the same day) and trying to pull - i only had the energy/strength to pull for at most 200 meters at a time, and struggled plenty just to keep at the back of the paceline, so when the guys made a u-turn and headed back to changi village, i decided to coast along, and make a ssssslow u-turn instead... then i saw desmond's dad on the opposite side of the road, and he gestured something like, "why are you suddenly going so slowly?" or "you got dropped?" i replied back, "oh, i'm punchek-ed..."

after 5 minutes of sssssslow spinning down, i had this sound coming from the rear wheel, with each rotation of the wheel, that sure sounded like something brushing against the rear brake blocks. to try to clear it, i stopped the bike.

big mistake. i realized i was losing air - the rear tire was cut with an incision probably 1 cm long. argh! me and my big mouth... best of all, i'd punctured my rear tire which is a *tubular* tire. in a small size, 650c. oops. double as hard to recover it. great. stuck with no pump, no spare tubular tire. i was hosed alright... but thankfully i met some of the fellow riders from the tuesday night, seng chu hin group. ann (or anne, for the matter) lent me 10 bucks so i could hitch a ride out to desmond's place where i i placed my barang-barang. if not for them, i'd be having a nice looooong stroll from coastal back to bedok... reaching probably at 4am?

i got back to desmond's dad's shop, and deposited the bike at his place, while i took the punctured rear wheel back. we had a short time at the food centre around their shop, and we saw this actress who was acting as a bitchy swimmer in that recent tcs screening... her complexion was unbelieveably smooth, even sitting 7 meters out (of course estimated, i didn't measure it... ) i could see from the way light was reflecting off her cheeks, it was smooooooth... even santana would have sung "smoooooooooooth...." instead of the way he did it on that track from supernatural

i think, my friend up there in the sky is telling me, hey, just when you think you're really down on your luck, there are still nice people around you. this night i shall never forget - always help a fellow rider in need.