Saturday, April 30, 2005

An awesome shot of lightning that I was blessed enough to catch on camera just 2 days ago. Posted by Hello

Yes, a long weekend!

I love long weekends! but then again, who doesn't?

Last bachata lesson in a few hours time. Really beautiful slow dance. Class is real small, apparently the interest isn't much there i suppose... though a lot of it could probably be picked up if you social enough at Union or something like that.

On iTunes now - Spanish Harlem by the BBC Allstars band... What a beautiful piece to start off a weekend.

Got a promotional offer for Al Dente (quite a good Italian restaurant) that entitles me to a 1+1 main course within April. Asked my younger sis, but apparently she is too shy to be seen alone having dinner with her bro... what?!! don't know what she's thinking. Really want to go for it before the offer ends, drop me an sms if anyone's keen...

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Gonna ORD/ROD...

Time flies... 2years and 2 months in the army, now coming to an end soon in the next 7 weeks.

God has been wonderful in seeing me through some of the most physically, mentally and emotionally gruelling times in my life these past 2 years. An opportune time to grow as a person- to be much better at it. And also a spiritually reviving past year. Looking back, God has blessed me exceedingly, though I feel way short in measure to be who He wants me to be. But praise God, I'm still a few steps closer ;)

Will start clearing my leave from next week onwards. Somehow, I don't quite know what to do, though I seem to have lots to do.

Have got my room's redesigning in progress. Repainting and new furniture (Yes, com is still on the floor and I'm wondering what will my mum say if I got rid of my bed?) This is gonna be a real headache but well worth the extra panadols.

That planned fishing trip with dear Kailing! Sorry, no dates yet. Just gonna go fishing without really knowing how to fish that well. If it works out, we'll hv a ball of a time. But even if it doesn't I'm sure we'll have a laughing good time too... Afterall, fishing isn't about the fish actually(that's a bonus), it's abt watching the world pass u by and the great outdoors. Okay I admit, I take sick pleasure in skewering the prawns and ikans.. heh...

Adrienne my debate junior has called me if I'll like to help out the new batch of debators. The ACJC debates are coming up in the month of May, and these "noobs" are hoping they won't be "free frag". The AC's have a particularly fond memory for me, as I personally carried that shield out of AC's own hands in a five-to-nothing unanimous victory. Hope we score something here. Anyone keen on coming down to watch the competition, just ask me.

Salsa, how to move on from here on? Am looking for lessons to improve bah... I love Latin beats so much now, I can jus about learn every Latino dance there is... Something about how when you get dancing in your heart, it'll stay there a life time bah.. I believe the human body was made to dance and the heart made to feel the music. Thank God for making us that way! wonderful way of expression. To that someone who once said I can't dance.. "Try dancing with me now!" haha.. no lah, kidding.. Anyway, meanwhile I'll continue in Luther's Salsa 3 class with Maoz and co. The moves are just insanely daunting (I couldn't believe we actually caught all that on Friday! haha...)

Still hoping for a tution assignment. I can really do with a little bit more cash.

What more can I, should I, must I do?

With the nearing of my ORD, comes an important date too. I'll have to have answers by then, answers I'm sure of. Perhaps more of that at a later time...

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

New Bracelet Design!

A New bracelet design is out! Made from genuine swarovski crystals, frosted stars and silver, this new design is retailing for only $6.50!

Check it out @
More accessories here

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Excuse me, but what's it worth?

"Debates", being a debater of sorts, the word has always dawned upon me with notions of feisty cross-fires, salient points, logical arguments, cohesive cases, all topped up with irresistibly comprehensive statistics, analysis and cases of precedence. Yet as importantly, we debate to come to a more informed conclusion of a matter that does not appear to have a straight answer. What was sorely lacking in all our discussions on legalising casinos was a a strong, well-articulated and comprehensive opposition voice - knowing that we debate a forgone conclusion, do we tend to down play our negative sentiments and inhibitions towards a legalize gambling penthouse(make that plural...) by reassuring ourselves that the government "knows-better"?

I'm loving it
Our political machination of propaganda is quite an applaudable device that is appealingly democratic yet amazingly iron-fisted. How I love it when I see a new issue of debate in the horizon. How our favourite tabloids, broadcasting networks, talk shows and papers start a trail of fact reporting, surveys, discussions(no matter how inappropriate the panel of experts, nor how inadequately prepared they seemed and how the discussion would somehow degenerate into the travail, leaving people no better then when they begun). How ministers have a gift of speaking in a coherent voice (a remarkable work that can only point to a single author) and commencing off in neutrality yet eventually swaying towards reluctance to the inevitable and of course finally embracing it. I love it because of the uncanny semblance to watching Vanna White sashaying across a board of lit rectangles, each time revealing more letters to the phrase, each moment trying to solve the puzzle - all that elaborate PR and Corporate Communications to serve us the answer that had already been decided. So much for my love of the ingenuinity that went into it.

For the love of God, pls dun!
When MM Lee said that he was personally opposed to gambling but Singapore could no longer afford not to have a casino, he seemed pretty convinced (but so was he when he thought that graduates would have brighter babies and should give birth to as many as they could while lower-education families should just stop at 2 in the late '70s, not withstanding the statistical majority of successful men and women from lower-education homes).

My point being, are you convinced that Singapore would "crash-and-burn" without a casino? (i'm not) Looking at the established gambling havens of Las Vegas and Macau, one can't help but wonder how Las Vegas got it's catchy name of "Sin City" nor how Macau is reknown for it's triads and illicit money laundering activities that have links with the casinos. Surely, we have better security, tighter laws and less corrupt government that wouldn't turn us into another Macau. Vegas with all it's affluence, resources and experience in dealing with casino related crimes is still considered a hot spot of opportunity for organised crime, ranging from drugs, prostitution, loan sharking, illegal gambling(so much for the argument for legalising gambling to kill illegal gambling) to extortion. Violent crime is the most predominantly impactful crime in Vegas given the nature of them.(Vegas has new crime element: Israeli mob )
I truly am clueless, what gives the government or people confidence that they'll be able to control crime from a casino(much less 2) given the extensive experience that world leading casino cities have had with casino related crimes and are still strugglling with. It does seem that we'll "crash-and-burn" faster with the casino(s) around. Would I be correct 10 years from now? Perhaps I won't. But we sure are opening up the floodgates to being known as "Sin-gapore".

For the love of money, pls dun!
Quite honestly, deciding to build 2 casinos because it will generate a direct 10,000 jobs is plain lame. Given the social cost, it ain't like building another wafer or petrol-chemical plant. Let's talk about the social cost 1st before Lim Boon Heng starts on the job opportunities generated. I hate to say this, but as a minister or any care-taker of the state, blurting such comments that have not been given suffcient or due consideration is incredibly irresponsible. Let's estimate and postulate the social cost before weighing it with the economic gains. After all, social cost will carry a hefty economic price tag to invest at keeping vice and other social problems at bay too.

Why would a tourist actively choose to come to Singapore because it has a casino or 2 when neighbouring Macau has a more developed industry? Or even the more experienced Genting Casino? How many can we attract and who to Singapore with our casinos? Given our exorbitant alcohol prices, incredulous tabacco taxes, small time red light district, death panalty for even soft drugs. Singapore is an incredibly "clean" and expensive place to gamble. Compared with the big players, what have we to offer that stands out that will garantee the financial returns and justifiable profits of our inevitable social cost? If the idea of employing more policemen and social workers is what we're thinking of resolving unemployment, I say it's time to get back to the drawing boards for better ways to solve unemployment then building casinos.

Monetarily, going into building simply a casino with resort facilities will not be the factor that'll draw the money spending crowds given the fierce competition we face in the region. There is no data that shows some level of safe returns. Socially, history and present day examples have only shown us a social burden that is incredibly heavy and difficult to manage. I can only say, guys up there please do due dligence and present us with way more comprehensive and convincing case before making sweeping statements like "Singapore cannot afford not to have a casino", coz at least 1 Singaporean here isn't convinced.. (Yes, this is what education does to a man....)

2.20c worth.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

DIY Electric Toothbrush Sander

Been awhile since I touched modelling as I continue to sort out my room and belongings, I’m finding it hard to get the space to work on models.

After going through a couple of articles and receiving some feedback from modellers making their own sander using an electric toothbrush, I decided to give it a try and start a mini-project.

I remember reading one such article by a Japanese modeller a few months back but thought, these electric toothy brushes must be really expensive, it’ll be crazy to use them to sand stuff. Well, I was wrong, many electric toothbrushes now are dirt cheap( ‘except fro the Oral B ones). On a trip to Guardian pharmacy I found them selling an in-house brand electric toothbrush for only SGD9.90 and it came with an additional head that I just have to mention was compatible with Oral B’s electric toothbrushes as well. Please do not get the cheaper brushes for kids as those do not have sufficient power for it to be a decent sander.

So here’s the low down on what you need:

  • An electric toothbrush (circular rotating motion)
  • Sandpaper
  • Double-sided tape

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Now here’s how the toothbrush looks right out of the box.

STEP 1 – Remove Bristles

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A brand new brush head

Use a plier or pincer of sorts to pluck out the bristles. I find that plucking the bristles by bending them sideways is much easier then trying to remove them straight out (perpendicular to brush head surface). Note, i did not cut them, I removed them from the root. You don’t want any bristles left remaining.

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Ouch.. that must hurt.

STEP 2 –  Attach sanding head

Now this step is real simple. In fact if you’ve got step 1 done, you’ve basically done like 90% of all there is to this sander.

Take double-sided tape and sand paper and measure accordingly to the brush head.

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Cut the correct size and stick tape onto sand paper.

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Next peel the tape and stick it to the brush head.


Now, you’ve done it! Sorry, I got too excited and just had to try it out first. The sanding was excellent and that just made me wonder how did I put up with all that crap hand sanding all this while? Every modeller is a lazy modeller (but that’s not our fault, I think kits are just too hard to prep before we get all crazy with the colouring and fixture). If you’re a lazy modeller like me, do spend that short amount of time to DIY one such brush yourself, you’ll never want to look back at the days w/o it.

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Additional thoughts

  • Use rechargable batteries. Cheaper in the long term. Last longer per charge then alkaline. And higher voltage = stronger sanding POWER!! mmm… good :P
  • Some Japanese modellers are replacing the generic motor with Tamiya hyper/Ultra dash motors. These motors will definitely upz your sanding power by lots. Something to consider in the future.
  • Try out more permanent sanding discs? Not tried, but sounds worth trying if it means I dun have to keep changing sand paper. Okay I’m darn lazy, i admit it.