Saturday, September 16, 2006

Allegro the Ballerina Duck, bought off eBay. Delivery in less than 7 days from the UK, not bad at all! Posted by Picasa
An evening more memorable for getting lost in Katong again than for anything else. There would've been no problem if I had kept on the route I'm familiar with though it's longer, but clever me tried a short-cut through the housing estate. I got disorientated with all the similar sounding road names and parked at a different parking lot from the one I had in mind. Then it was on foot trying to find our way back out to East Coast Road, going the wrong way up Joo Chiat Road, then backtracking 180° the other way.

What was supposed to be a fairly simple stroll down the street became a nearly 1 hour trek to find the eatery Jen recommended. With the parentals and my aunt visiting from the UK in tow, it was a bit embarrasing to be so lost. And then it started to drizzle. And only mom had a personal brolly. Nice.

The food at Peranakan Inn & Lounge was worth the walk, though. It's an old-style shophouse setup with a bibik green-and-pink paintjob and Ming blue-and-white wall-tiling. Ex-pres Wee and incumbent, Nathan, pose with the proprietors in 2 photos on the mandatory display wall of publicity/awards/memorabilia.

We ordered only the familiar stuff: bakwang kepeting, chix buah kelak, babi ponteh, sambal kangkong and otah. Everything fresh from the kitchen, no mass-produced dishes. Peppery soup, non-piggy babi (unlike the one we had in Malacca -- and enjoyed anyway, mind you), buah kelak kernel that comes out more or less intact rather than as a pasty mush. The kangkong and otah were so-so.

Parents and aunt quite satisfied and impressed with the authenticity and quality of the food here. That's good enough for me!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

A reunion of sorts for us folks at MU, new and familiar faces alike. Tonight's performance, as it has been for the past 3 years, was an anthology of short movement pieces developed by the performers themselves, though there were also remakes of some of the older favourites in our repertoire.

Many of the newer pieces were minimal in narrative, opting to explore the movement aesthetic instead. This direction isn't likely to please everyone. The easiest way to appeal to the masses is to contextualize the movement discipline into simple storylines for the audience to fill-in-the-blanks and "get" what the performers are doing onstage. A few items were narrative-driven, such as Tina's box-from-hell; a rough remake of our z-sequences (basically a pair of janitors with more imagination than cleaning ability), and a very polished retelling of Silverstein's Tree story, but they were the minority.

In any case, tonight's performance was meant as a showcase of works-in-progress, of the material the performers are creating for themselves from their weekly rehearsal-workshop. Some pieces were just exercises, some will never be performed for real, and some will be cannibalized and recreated into some other form in some other performance.

Bottom line for this performance is: don't expect perfection, that's not what it's about, anyway.

Drama Club and Alumni, this performance runs till 16 Sept, so if you want to see what our old friends are up to it's not too late -- there are still a couple of shows left...!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Am looking through my 2nd set of KI research essays, and realizing that there are a number of key questions that KI research must address that GP doesn't have to bother with.

GP is very situational -- what is, what happened, how we respond to events and people, what we can conclude about ourselves from our observations of daily life, that sort of thing.

KI is more about ideas than ideals. From the topic of interest we choose to write on as a starting point, we explore the ideas behind the topic; as in the origins of those ideas, who were the major proponents of those ideas, how those ideas are manifested through common reference points in our society, how those ideas have shaped our lives as we know it, how we maintain and propagate those ideas in our society, what new ideas have arisen to challenge existing ideas, who the challengers are, how (manner, strategy, arena) these new ideas are being spread in our society, what kind of effect does the clash of ideas have on us in our society, what do we conclude about ourselves though observing how we think and respond to our thoughts and ideas.

Ultimately, we want to examine what we, collectively, are thinking about and how what we think leads us to behave in society the way we do. The topic of discussion -- whether Politics, Pop Music or Pokemon -- has to fit itself around these guidelines, as far as its content goes. Too cheem?

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Caught a glimpse of the world Amy left behind to join us in our industry. I got to soak in the atmosphere of the tabloid newsroom for about 10-15 minutes, and it wasn't anything like it's portrayed in the movies. No mad rush, tapitty-tap of keyboards, phones ringing off the hook commotion; no JJJ loudly chewing off the head of some dumb-ass freelance photog hawking shots of mayhem and gore; none of the chaos as it appears in the Bugle or the Planet archetypes.

Instead, like any other office (if I didn't know I was in a newsroom, I wouldn't have known I was in a newsroom), there was a quiet professionalism mixed with the easy camaraderie of people who know their purpose, and know how to get it done.

Would be nice to run NY conneX at the same level. Perhaps we need another Lim Kim San to bluster and rave and threaten to close us all down before we start taking ourselves a little more seriously? Not to say that I'm dissatisfied with the way things have gone so far, but when you get a view of what's over the fence, you realize that status quo is never enough. Loga, et al, let's not get too comfortable with our routines just yet! Our 'paper still has places to go!

Monday, September 11, 2006

A friend brought me flowers, she said they were lilacs,
But I've never been good with plants.
Her next presentation, a new dictionary,
She circled the word, "romance."

So enthusiastic, a little bit drastic,
I shaved her name in my head;
And as she beheld it, she said I misspelled it,
Need more be said?

from "These Apples," by Barenaked Ladies

When it comes to giving gifts, we men seldom get it right. Well, me, anyway. Guess I shouldn't have been so gung ho about making my first eBay purchase that I didn't really consider the price I was paying for the item -- twice what she could have paid if she went shopping for it herself, she said. Not quite the response I was expecting, but a lesson about Internet purchasing worth learning, I guess.