Thursday, June 10, 2010

Soccer means that much

Like so many other cable subscribers, I've resisted picking up the World Cup package. I'm no revolutionary taking part in a revolt against greedy, overcharging media content providers. I actually sympathise with our two cable companies who, I give the benefit of the doubt, had themselves been overcharged for the rights to cablecast all those matches 'live' from South Africa. Apparently, someone thinks soccer means that much to our TV watching population. Guess they're wrong.

It's a simple matter of economics. A typical householder like me wouldn't mind paying a small premium like we did at the last World Cup, but to pay $94.16 for this current package means that we will have to watch every single match in order to make our every sheckle count. Even at the early-bird price (which has been likened to the cost of a cup of coffee per 'live' game), I have no desire to drink that much coffee nor do I feel the need to watch every game. Especially not when free-to-air TV is broadcasting just the big matches which I am more likely to watch. Hey, I do so have a life.

Anyway, we have already accomplished our Goal 2010. Mr Mah just got the sport wrong.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

No place for old men

Two days in a row, and I can't find a decent place to bowl. My usuals have had their lanes booked out by schools which have somehow cottoned on to the idea that bowling is a great activity to introduce their kids to. Considering the miserable weather, I'm not surprised they're bringing their kids indoors. But it's deep into the summer hols; why can't they just leave their kids alone and not organize them so much?

I did, however, scrape a lane from Orchid Bowl. No little kids bringing the roof down with their din, no little kids swinging from the chandeliers, no little kids at all. Bliss. But Orchid Bowl is showing its age. Clunky bowler input interface; basic overhead score display sans exciter graphics; bumpy potentially ball-damaging retrieval system. Everything looks and feels in need of updating, nothing to bring the little kids running here. Maybe I've found the right place to bowl after all.

Saw some national team players training here too. The lanes are slightly longer so they're good for training accuracy; the pins are slightly heavier and don't bounce around much, so it's more challenging to bowl strikes. That's what makes this place a good training ground.

Scored 159 for a four game average. Out of practice. : P

Monday, June 07, 2010

Calories out, calories in

Faith is leaving the house while the sky is overcast and drizzly, while pointing the car in the direction of the beach. PT, John, has been persuading me to get off the treadmill and try the exercise bike or something else for a change, so I decided to get on a real bike and work my cardio on the ECP instead.

I like the treadmill at Cali 'cos it faces three large TV screens. When I tread, my attention is on the programmes. My mind blanks out and though my body's huffing and sweating I can keep right on going, no problem. But with the exercise bike, I have to keep watching the meter and maintain 90 RPMs while simultaneously watching the clock and the calorie-burn readout. Do you have any idea how stressful that is? No, thanks. I'm sticking to my treadmill, so there.

ECP rewarded my faith with dry weather. It was cloudy and breezy, very little sun but no rain. Perfect for biking, lousy for a tan. Have to remember not to rent bikes from the rental outlet at the McD's block, at least until they update their stock. Actually, I wouldn't be so miffed if I hadn't been so effortlessly overtaken by an expat couple while I was pedalling like mad on mine.

Phase II was bowling. What is it about today? The lanes have been overrun with schoolchildren, leaving me with nothing. Gave up looking for lanes and had lunch instead, hence the pix above.

Rack of lamb, so tender. Poke the meat with a fork and bloody juices flow. Release the fork and the meat absorbs everything it leaked out before. I've never seen anything like that. I could have done without the breaded outer layer, but I really enjoyed this set lunch. Beaulieu house, Sembawang Park. At $35 for the set, it was pricier than I remember. But it was a fair price to pay for this kind of quality.