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.::z. 8/8.

elegantly wasted.

Friday, January 31, 2003

I'm tired. Have not written in 2 days. I cant even remember what happened on Thursday.

Oh. There was the CEO briefing about HDB's restructuring. He said the same old thing, I fell asleep the first 10 minutes actually. I was looking at something else most of the time. My eyes roamed the entire auditorium. Theresa and Kok Ching were sitting beside me. A few seats away, I can see Rebecca and Kang Kee. How nice. Hui Hui and Cheng Chuan were sitting on the right side of the auditorium. Andrew and Jafne on the left side. Lovely sight. Behind them, Regina and Tian Wah. Not counting the other 'veteran' ISD couples. Wonderful. And then I saw him, the Michelin Man. And true enough Lily was sitting beside him. FUCK IT. Hahahahah... Earlier in the day me and Andrew were Novell msgin each other and the essence of the conversation is that, if the world is against you, you just say, FUCK IT. Yeah, FUCK IT.

But I cant help but look at them. They look funny. I think its just me. There are too many couples here. I close my eyes and fell asleep again. Kok Ching gave me a nudge. He said, goodness, look at the no of couples here. As if he read my mind. Then he said, "well, you were almost a couple too."

HUH? I really didnt know who he was talking about. He said she was going after me but I didnt respond, so she gave up. What the? Cant be Lily. He doesnt know. Erica? Possible. Theresa quipped "Yah lor.. your secret admirer". I didnt really wanna think about it then, so I closed my eyes again. ZZzzz. On and off I heard CEO saying something about the new HDB Corp and what our options are. Just show me the money, I thought to myself.

Right after the talk I rushed out and met Chris at Basement 3. He took a few measurements of the Mobile Van, then brought the new ruggedised notebook up to my cube. He demo-ed it for a bit, then Kevin from Starhub came. A real pro, this guy. He installed the GPRS card on the notebook and voila, wireless surfing. Cool man. Kevin did a mini presentation on my whiteboard on Starhub's GPRS and DLC capability. He impressed me. I wanna impress people. I must be more confident.

I stayed back a while longer to play with the notebook and learn about the Personal Firewall, told Shih Wee I really cant run today, this is the 2nd time this week I cancelled. Finally left the office about 730 and met Mervin at Marina. He had some SingTel vouchers for Kenny Rogers and we had a very good dinner. Just thinking about it now makes me hungry again. I told him about the CEO briefing but I dont think he was listening anyway. CIO, CEO, he was mixing it all up on who is actually leaving. After dinner we walked around a bit and I bought a new pair of Teva Sandals at WOS. They were having that Sandals for Charity thing and since I'm going to Bintan next week and my old Bata Sandals are begging to go into retirement, I went down to the car, took out the Bata and bought the Teva for about half price.

I showed the notebook to Mervin, he was surfing while I was driving around. Pretty good coverage. Stopped for a while at East Coast, listened to some music that I downloaded and then went back home.

Just before lunch today Kok Ching asked whether I want to go eat with him. He has been helping me out a lot with PVCS. I wanted to go to the post office to pay for the TV license fee and he offered to come along. Well ok then. We went to MOS burger and he was telling me about his new Sengkang place. Must be exciting, to get married and play house with a girl you like. You get to choose your sofa, your TV, even your toilet sink. I asked him who he was talking about yesterday when he told me about my secret admirer. Suliana lah, he stressed. Oh. Well. Ok I've heard people telling me that even though she has a boyfriend (Ibrahim) she was not really happy cos he's a PUNK (he colors his hair and ride this mean bike) and she was looking for someone more.. err.. I dont know the word to use. You get my drift. And of course, I didnt really do anything, like always. I was having so much fun with someone else then. But look at where that has gotten me. FUCK IT.

In the afternoon it was time for CIO to give his speech. It was more of a history lesson on what he has done in ISD in his 13 years. Yada Yada Yada. I have utter respect for that man, I think he really made it. He's THERE. You've got to hand it to this guy. Oh and Theresa and See Yiing has been persuading me to go to his farewell dinner on 20/2. I dont really wanna go, its $32 and I dont see the point of going. But they want me to give a little speech, from a SLO's point of view. Maybe I'll do it. Maybe. I'll give an answer tomorrow.

After the speech me, Dilip, Shekar and Nor worked on the project some more, Wee Wah really helped a lot. I met the SCS vendors around 630 and they installed additional 1G RAM and another CPU to each server. Resolved the ArcServe issue too. I'm lost when it comes to the actual details of the application, especially on the Lotus Notes part. Hey I have not gone for any courses and this is the first time I'm touching it. I need to learn it myself I guess. Later. Much later. Told Shih Wee again, for the 3rd time this week, that the run is off, and finally left the office at 9pm. Went to the gym and ran for 5km.

RIISE AND HESKEY :) 2-2 Liverpool vs Arsenal.
posted by zul, 12:26 AM | link | 0 comments |

Wednesday, January 29, 2003

Another day of last minute heart attacks at the workplace.

Kok Ching came back from his course to help us implement BL04Mobile into production using PVCS and Bessie stayed back late to help PLM it. A lot of minor problems, my PC couldnt compile the java programs so had to use Kok Ching's PC, Bessie forgot her FTP password, etc etc... but nothing is more frustrating than what was going to happen later. It was already 630pm when the programs were finally ready to be ftped to Websphere. Kok Ching had a 7pm appt with Theresa, they have tickets to the premiere of Shanghai Knights. I felt really bad about it. I think he made it in time.

Well anyway, Bessie logged into the HDBWASP01 and I was ready to move in the files when I realised that there was no BL04Mobile folders. What the fuck. Leh Choon called and asked how's the progress and I told her about it. She said that OPL dont have the rights to create folders and we should have applied for it so that OAS can create them for us. I checked with Nor and she said she already applied for it, Janice even told her that in order to create the folders, she has to restart the server. WELL THE FOLDERS ARENT THERE, JANICE. Dammit. Earlier on in the day her team made another boo-boo by not creating the templates that we applied for and for assigning Manager rights to some other people. I hope when VV goes over to OAS in February, things will be different. Since we cant move them in today, everybody went home.

I decided to go for the 740pm BodyPump class by Christina since I did not go this morning. Took a quick shower then rushed home. Gotta convert those tapes. Really looking forward to next week....
posted by zul, 12:42 AM | link | 0 comments |

Tuesday, January 28, 2003

Its finally confirmed where my current CIO is going...

Starhub's press release

Vice President of Strategic Relations and Public Affairs. Reports directly to CEO. Leading light of the IT industry. Wow... and look at his long list of accolades. Andrew pointed out to me the press release in the morning. Its funny really. How he can find this kind of lobang in this gloom. How when you're up there, your life somehow falls into place cos you know people, your connections will somehow lead you to THE WAY. Maybe he'll go there and set up a SPRC to organise inter-unit games. Maybe he'll even organise a inter-telco dragonboat competition. Whatever it is, I still wish him all the best. Like he needs it.

Lunch was interesting. I believe it was the first time in almost.. half a year, that I actually stepped out of the office and went outside for lunch. VV and Dilip asked me along, at first I didnt want to but I thought, what the hey. We went to the Muslim coffeeshop over at Central. A lot of things made me stop going out for lunch, I told a lot of people that lunch should be private time, that I want to sleep during lunchtime, or that I just dont like eating out. But frankly the main reason is that.. well back at Bukit Merah we used to eat lunch together everyday. Me, Lily, VV, Ed, Andy. Oh and Kok Ching too. The BIS2 gang. Kok Ching stopped joining us after Theresa became his, and he didnt want to have awkward moments if CT is around. Then I had a tiff with Ed and Andy, that was a long story. I still have not talked to them like before. Andy is ok, he still smile at me and we still chat a little bit, but Ed is still cold. And of course, Lily is now with CT and she has lunch with him. And the one thing I cannot stand is to see them together. So I stopped going out for lunch. I figured that that was the best.

Supposed to go Macritchie to run but we started UAT with Gerard and Arthur at only 430. And as usual, there are always surprises. Rebecca created the UDB tables in production wrongly, the creation_date and time were not set to the default system_date. And as a result she had to drop all the tables again and recreate them. UAT only resumed at about 530 and it finished only 2 hours later. By that time Shih Wee had gone home and Poh Yee was busy putting up the CNY decorations. I decided to go to the gym to make up for the 'lost' run. Ran the usual 5km and went home. Stayed up till late to convert Kelvin's wedding tapes to mpg. He still has not given me the angpow for me being the helper/usher/driver for his wedding. I know he gave Saul. He told me twice before that he forgot to bring or that I wasnt around when he brought the red packet. It has been 3 months. I'm not asking for it, I'm fine if he does not give me any, just that, if he said he had forgotten about it, then, does he need a reminder?

posted by zul, 7:15 AM | link | 0 comments |

Sunday, January 26, 2003

Implementation Day.

That would make a good movie title.

Anyway, woke up at 6 but went right back to sleep until I received an SMS from Nor. "Could you come to the office around 830 please?". Like I can reply back with a NO.
Dragged myself out of the house, and while I was turning into the PIE Nor called and said that CAES job abend so Lip Meng had to come back to resolve it first and then she will have to re-run the data conversion program. So she said I can come back in 2-3 hours. Fuck lah.. I am already driving there. So I went to the gym instead. Didnt know that it is still infested with gym freaks on Sunday mornings. Even the 9am bodypump class was full. Since I came at 915 and I dont want to enter a class halfway, I ran instead. And Nor and Dilip called 4 times when I was running into my 4th km. When I finished I took a quick shower and rushed to work. Realised while driving that Jing Liang only added in HDBWAST01 in the firewall rules... what about HDBWASP01! No wonder Nor is having problems... so I paged for Jing Liang and he reached the office about the same time as me. Well this is an understatement, but the problems went on and on. Lip Meng tried like 3 times to get his CAES ACjob right. Then it was the MQ problem, Geok Hoon came back and did something and it was ok at about 2, then hit a RACF ID problem, it couldnt logon to CICS. Had to call Wee Hing back. Apparently Nor applied for the ID waaaay before the implementation date, since it was not used for more than 90 days, it got revoked. At that time Boon Nam came back to the office cos maybe he got fedup that Nor called his hp countless time to make decisions, but he was kind enough to bring some KFC snacks and drinks for us. Finally all went well about 6pm.

I went to Suntec City and grabbed some Chicken Floss and Fish Floss buns for the family and met Mervin and Audrey. She's a nice girl. Looked like a seconday school punk to me. Kinda cool and laidback. I desperately wanted my Starhub mobile no 98508873 which came out on the papers today so we drove to Tampines Mall to get it. But dammit, the guy at the shop said that all the nos were gone on Saturday morning right after the paper was published. Damn damn damn. I really wanted that no. 8873. My birthdate.

After that Mervin and I went to the Delifrance there and we had dinner. Discussed a lot of things. One thing I told him about was why Audrey hates me. (Poh's wife Audrey. Not Mervin's colleague Audrey whom I met earlier. In case you get confused :p) That's something I cant write here. What I can say is that we saw this 2 young girls who were asking a Delifrance staff whether they can move the tables and chair outside and they were talking in these fake British stiff upper lips accent. You know, like.. err.. you know.. like the Queen's English. Mervin commented "Tarts", I said "Tartlets" (cos we were having them), and he taught me a new word.. "Prissy". As in.. "those prissy tarts!". It means.. to be exaggerratingly proper, extremely fastidious or easily disgusted. Like they were too proper to even touch a toilet bowl handle or something. You know... Never mind.

Well I just read Mervin's diary entry. He said something in response to my entry last night. I think this whole thing has been way overblown. I would like to keep all my friends. If they need to be advised, I will tell them in due time when they can listen. And if they are making the effort to improve, help them along. In the meantime, I hope he do not bring their reputation down by focusing on details. Why dont we all just get along.. In case he didnt notice, I am 30 already. Goodness. 30. Well, in 7 months time anyway. Goodness Gracious Me. THIRTY. That's scary.

posted by zul, 11:57 PM | link | 0 comments |

Saturday 25th

This is going to be a long one.

One more day to implementation. I got a call from Boon Nam while I was driving to work (it was already 830am and I was still on the PIE around Bedok) and he told me that he's on MC and that I have to cover for him as Ag UH. When I reached the office Nor was already there looking as if she's been up all night. She gave me some tasks to do, the server portion was almost complete for her testing so I gladly helped out wherever I could. What I couldnt take was surprises. Jing Liang and Rebecca came to my cube and suddenly asked whether we have tested the portion of using MQ client to push cases from the UDB server to the Websphere. Hmmm Dilip and I have tested thoroughly the portion from the checkpoints to the UDB server, the ftp from the mainframe to the server, and the uploading of cases to the database. I wasnt involved in the MQ portion, not one bit. But Nor was extremely busy with the program migration, Kok Ching and Leh Choon was waiting for her. So she just asked me whether I can help out. Just minutes ago she had a shouting match with Lip Meng on the phone, apparently he didnt answer her numerous pages so she called Boon Nam about it. And Boon Nam called him. Not wanting to add to her stress, I went over to Geok Hoon with Jing Liang to discuss about the MQ portion.

She asked me some questions, I was stumped. I know nobody installed MQ Client on my server, so I told her, no the server does NOT have MQ client, it only has java programs to invoke MQ on the Websphere. And there was the mistake (or not so). She went on and on about how Nor should test it much earlier and not the last minute (we've been testing from Dilip's PC which is in the HDB LAN. My server is in its own DMZ which goes through a firewall). Then when I went back to my cube, I found out that my server IS the MQ client. Fuck man. Wee Wah helped out a lot, he had gone through one complete cycle similar to mine. He even talked to Geok Hoon on the phone and told her not to scold me. I felt stupid. But am I to blame? Never mind.. I clarified to Geok Hoon and she was very nice, she gave me the CD to install the client. To cut a looong story short, I pushed for Nor to test out the MQ portion asap, cos its Saturday and everybody's going home soon. With Dilip busy helping her, I managed to get Shekar to help me out. We tested for about 3 hours! And it couldnt work, tried with many different version of MQ and Com.jar, installed the MQ client, thought it was the firewall blocking it, paged for Jing Liang and even got Wee Hing to add some firewall rules.. Nor panicked and asked whether we should postpone everything. I told her to give me some time to think. Sent an sms to KC telling him that maybe tonight I might not be free to meet him.

And it hit me after looking again at the properties file. Bam! Duh! They have coded the Hostname to connect to as 'HDBWAST01'. Thinking that my server would recognise that hostname and will know which IP address to connect to. But my server is in a DMZ and would NOT recognise HDB's DNS entry. So I added in the hostname definition in the local hosts file and it worked! Able to connect to Websphere, then to mainframe using MQ. I was so relieved I ran back to Nor and Dilip and said, DUH! It was so easy and everybody had to look outside but not something so obvious for the solution. So they went full steam ahead and called on Leh Choon and Kok Ching to do program migration (not after solving some minor problems). They left at about 4pm. I stayed back to cleanup the server and taught Nor how to make use of the Task Scheduler. Mervin called and said that KC asked him whether he was busy and he said yes and after that there was no follow-up on KC's part. I was too stressed to hear about that. What a nitpick.

Left the office at 7pm. Nor and Dilip was still coding. Dropped Saul at Nicoll Highway opp Suntec then I went on to pick Mervin up at Johnson's house. Got my first call from Dilip then, something about the UDB. We had dinner at Boy Accident Area, Nasi Lemak, Mee Goreng, Fried Chicken.. I was famished! Didnt even have time to eat breakfast of lunch earlier. After that we went to Frankel to meet up with KC and Sofian. We talked about Bintan trip, Sofian managed to get 2 girls to go with us. Heh. Chinese. Well. Hello! Out of curiousity I sms Poh asking him whether he wanna join us and he replied saying that Audrey went to a dinner and that he had to look after his son and all that. So I asked him whether we can go to his house after dinner. And he replied with a "Of course! Come come come!"


So off we all went to his house and surprisingly Joshua was not there. Poh said that he's at his mother's. Hmm. *WHAT*ever. Ijust wanted to talk to him, it has been so long. But the mood just wasnt right, we talked other things like my impending unemployment, Soccer, travelling, etc. He has grown, sideways. Nose is still as big though. Said our goodbyes and left his house at 1130. Everybody agreed to go have a drink so we went to Geylang Lor 9 for soyabean curd. Talked some more cock and then before we left, KC paid for the bill and then Mervin gave his share to him. (Earlier at Frankel KC gave back Mervin tea money which Mervin paid for). This might sound very trivial, well, it IS very trivial, but on the ride home Mervin bitched on and on about how KC shouldnt accept the money and said "No no its on me" or something. I got very upset and tried hard not to show it. What the hell is this? If you wanna zoom in on little details so that you can have the luxury and pleasure of showing to me that a person is of a highly questionable moral standing, then for goodness sake solve it on the spot and tell him what you think. Why keep bothering me with your unhappiness about litle things and making it stressful? Shouldnt it be simple? What does he want me to do? I dont see any problems, KC and me are just like normal. Mervin is making it as if KC fucked my little sister or something.

Hey, if you want us to pick, boy we can pick a lot about you also. I mean, I know he has my best interest at heart and that me and him are OK, but you wont like it either if I constantly talk to you about your friends as if you want me to make enemies of them. Sorry, I am fine with everybody. To quote a Wuxia wisdom taken from the dud movie Hero:

"The supreme achievement of swordsmanship is that you no longer have the sword in your hand or in your heart. You seek peace".

Oh, Dilip and Nor called me up like 4 times throughout that night. They are having problems connecting to the UDB. I have to be in the office at about 730.
I better go to bed now. 4 more hours till 7am.

posted by zul, 8:26 AM | link | 0 comments |

Saturday, January 25, 2003

Friday 24th January

2 more days to implementation. Another day of test, test.. and test. Left office at 930pm, Wee Wah was still doing his stuff. Nor and Dilip were preparing for program migration. Could have left earlier cos I finished my work at about 8, was waiting for Merv's call cos he sms earlier "Tea tonight?" but after that he cancelled. Said he got headache. Thats a new one. Heard Audrey's voice in the background. Whatever. I'm gonna sleep now. Too tiring.. was up from 5am. Iva didnt show up again for the 7am class. Hmm maybe cos I didnt reply to her emails or something. Whatever.

posted by zul, 7:19 AM | link | 0 comments |

Thursday, January 23, 2003

Left the office at 10pm today. Nor and Dilip were still conducting system test when I left. Shekar and Beth were doing tests of their own too. The whole day was spent in the server room! UDB testing in the morning, AVSS testing in the afternoon. Quite some time was spent trying to make the Java program connect to the AVSS servers. Tried every possible combination of hostname and SID, even got Jing Liang and Ricky involved but finally got a breakthrough when I called Jimmy from Tuas and asked whether there are any other external agencies that uses Java to connect to their Oracle database. And voila! He emailed me a sample code and the culprit all along was the port no! Should have used port 1526 instead of 1521! It was ok from then onwards, testing with them (including simulating payment) continues tomorrow.

Lunch was good, ate with the almost entire dragonboat teams (men and ladies) at KFC. CIO insisted on treating us before he leaves. Actually right after the dragonboat competition in September, he did ask me to organise a lunch treat. But the teams didnt do too well and I wasnt really keen on organising one, so I just kept quiet, hoping he'll just forget about it. But about 3 weeks ago I bumped into him and he said "Hey! What happened to the lunch treat I asked you to organise? Quick, hold one before I leave!" Well, as you wish, sir.

Cant wait for system implementation this Sunday. God Speed. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

posted by zul, 11:28 PM | link | 0 comments |

Another day spent in the server room freezing my butt off. But I'm happy :)

Cos it worked!!! The network connectivity was A-ok... all the way from Tuas to Woodlands through the new Firewall pass the backbone router to the old Firewall, from the new server to the old server. Man was I relieved, Ricky is a real pro at this. Sure glad that I awarded the contract to IBM. Using his approach, the lines need to be swung once only. Come Sunday, there will be no issue with routers ar firewalls, we need to only concentrate on the application. I can even connect to the AVSS Oracle databases without any problems.. phew.. Nor and the CPs were supposed to test out the Java application after that but they were not ready so I concentrated on the notebook and GPRS card.

It was only at 530 that Dilip was ready with some test scripts and programs so we went to the server to test it out. And I had a 630 appt with Vincent for a haircut! Called him up to say I'll be late and then tested.. or rather tried to test but couldnt cos we found out Rebecca did not create the tables using the latest definitions. We abandoned the test and I rushed out of the office at 635 and reached Boat Quat at 7. And then I was made to wait till almost 830. This always happens. I always wait for him to cut my hair for at least an hour every single time. But the funny thing is when he is finally ready for me and start cutting my hair, I tend to forget about the excruciating wait cos he will start chatting on and on about everything under the sun and make me feel as if I'm talking to the kid I used to know in primary school. And sometimes he gives really good haircut. The kind you feel like a million bucks when you step off the seat. But not tonight. Tonight its just so-so. Oh well. I'm not vain. (VV: Not vain my ass)

After the haircut I figured that I was already in Raffles Place and parked right opposite Calif Gym so what the hey.... my running attire are in the car anyway. Ran for 5km then rushed home for Smallville.

Tired man. Was up from 4am watching the Liverpool-Sheffield match. And worth it too, we're in the finals! Time to sleep now, time to recharge.

posted by zul, 12:14 AM | link | 0 comments |

Tuesday, January 21, 2003

I must sleep soon. Liverpool plays Sheffield United at 4am and I wanna watch it.

Left the office at 930pm today. I realise why I am a B person. I procrastinate. A lot. Well... its not that I dont do my work. I finish my assignments in time. But usually I do it at the very last minute. Like just now we had a meeting at 430, me, Nor, the IFVS Team CPs, and then Nor asked me to update them on the hardware status. And I told them confidently about the servers, routers etc etc.. and then she asked me about the notebook and GPRS card. And then it dawned on me. Shit. The implementation is THIS coming Sunday... Fuck. I know I'm not going to get the ruggedised notebook in time, the invitation to quote just closed on the 16th and I am still writing the paper to award it. Did you manage to borrow a notebook from EUS then, Nor asked. Oh man... we've discussed about this like countless times. And the implementation is THIS SUNDAY! Heh like I need the thrill to complete everything at the 11th hour or something. I thought to myself, you definitely have to cancel the movie appointment tonight. Earlier on KC had suggested we go see Analyze That at GV Marina at 715. So I smsed him "Sorry dude, really busy, got to call it off." FRET NOT! Zul is here to set things right!

So immediately after the meeting I went into full gear, called up a few vendors, wrote some emails, completed the 2 outstanding papers..... Nor and the CPs stayed back too. I've got a lot to follow-up tomorrow. Merv called a few times but I was too busy to pick up the phone. Chatted with Lily while I was doing my work, hey she's still great to chat with. She reads this regularly, she said. Well, I told her that one fine day she might just read something she wont want to. She left earlier, walking into the sunset (i.e. through the dark corridors of BIS1 and to RRS) to meet her knight in shining armour (i.e. the pale white guy). That's a cheap shot. I must not write about him like that. I promise!.... I'll try. :p

Earlier in the day we had a unit meeting and one of the agenda item is for Lily and VV to do a demo of their new system to the whole unit. Lily presented first, and while she was babbling on VV and me bitched on and on about our B grades. Then an idea struck us... BANG! VV thought it would be cool if, during the demo, when he had to enter a name in one of the field, he enter "Bee Per Son" ('B' person). I went one up and suggested he enter "NotA@APA.com" in the email field. LOL! And when it was his turn to present, he actually tried to enter "Bee Per Son" but fumbled and entered "Bee Oer Son" or something like that. Heh. I hope Boon Nam got the meaning of it anyway. Pengecut.

ANYWAY. Tomorrow's going to be another long day in the server room. We're doing network, database and application testing from the new IFVS server all the way to the AVSS servers. I pray to God now that everything will work out fine. Oh, and it was Teffy's birthday today!

"Nothing so loud, as hearing when we lie.
The truth is not kind, and you said neither am I"

- Toad the Wet Sprocket
posted by zul, 10:34 PM | link | 0 comments |

Monday, January 20, 2003

I got into an email war with Nor again. Sigh. I just couldnt take it.. and with the office's current mood, I just didnt give a flying fish about it.

I mean, I tried very hard to swap my Bintan dates. Called up 2 staff, 1 of them apologised profusely about not being able to help, the other one, Yusof from HAD, very nicely agreed to the swap. That means, he'll take my Jan 27-31 slot and I take his Feb 3-7 slot. Emailed Nor about it, thinking she would be happy that I did the swap, instead she replied something like... Did you get Boon Nam's clearance on this?

I emailed her back, this is the best I can do. It will be one week plus after implementation, I will make sure there will be no hardware problems. There WILL be hardware problems, even months after the implementation, so when is a safe time to take leave, August? Haha I purposely put in that sarcastic question in the end. After sending that reply back to her, I left for Woodlands Checkpoint. Met Ricky and we did our work till about 1130am. Still early. I dont wanna be back in the office for the 1pm team review. Its lunchtime anyway. So I just drove around. Round and round aimlessly. Had lunch and then drove back very slowly, by the time I reached back office it was 2pm. The team was still having their review in Courage Room. I just sneaked past and went quietly into my cube. I really dont feel like even looking at Boon or Kwan.

About 2 plus the meeting ended and I was in the middle of writing a long email to Boon Nam telling him about the whole Bintan thing when he appreared sheepishly in front of me (Lily would say, PENGECUT!) and told me, "Are you free? Lets discuss about this whole leave issue. Courage Room now." Okaaayyyyyy... so Nor has met up with him earlier and told him all about this. Exactly what she told him, I dont know.

So then Boon asked me how this whole thing came about and I told him the whole story. And old diplomatic, tactful Boon told me that he knows I am not irresponsible and that I am making the effort to change, and stressed that next time before booking for holiday packages/airline/accom/etc, we must seek clearance first blah blah. And he told me that he is leaving it up to me to take the leave and go to Bintan, but if there are any hardware problems, then be prepared to be paged. I said, FINE, I will take the ferry back if I have to. Dammit. I wanted to tell him what VV suggested he would say if Boon asked him to do something, and that would be "I will do whatever your grading justifies." Isnt that petty hahahahahaha :) But who cares. Gimme the money and I'll go.

I did some work then left office at 545 with Shih Wee and Poh Yee. The weather was dark and it looked like it was going to rain anytime but I really felt like running so we went to Macritchie and ran in the rain. Pretty cool run, drenched and soaked, but happy :) Poh Yee had the wet t-shirt look (oops!) so Shih Wee gave her his extra t-shirt. Drove them home then I went to KPT Eunos for coffee with Mervin. He cant go to Bintan :( Oh well, I guess I'll go with KC, Sofian and Daniel then. I really wish he'd re-consider, he brings life to any situation under any circumstances. My fingers are crossed.

posted by zul, 11:38 PM | link | 0 comments |

Sunday, January 19, 2003

Well, they've finally won. Heil Heskey! Now its time to go unbeaten for the rest of the season!

Nothing much happened today. Gym, class, ran, went to Suntec to get my favourite Watermelon and Sugarcane juice, some bread (sometimes I think I put on whatever I lose at the gym in an instant). It was raining the whole day and I didnt really feel like walking anywhere, so I went back to the office. Hmm Puay Nee/Sulestri wasnt there, they usually come back on Sundays. I cleaned up my workstation a little (I wanna clear everything slowly), read the memo that CDD sent out... same things that Erica/Saul/Andrew told me. Did some admin work, replied some emails, then collected the KL photos at the photoshop downstairs. It was still early so I took the train to Orchard and walked around Wisma a bit. Saw this guy from NTU, I used to see him everyday during the mugging period. Poh and me used to cordoned off a corner of Library 2, Basement 4, and we always see this guy at the table next to us. He has that Dao rich look, and he always has a constant stream of beautiful girls beside him wherever he go. We hate him cos, well, we're jealous. Who wouldnt be. Anyway, I just saw him last week too at Cafe Cartel when Merv and me were having coffee then. And here he is now again, and surprise surprise, he still has that LOOK and the girl beside him this time, WOW. Hmph.

Had dinner at KPT Eunos with Merv and he seemed adamant about not going to Bintan. I dont really know the reason, he said he just couldnt go cos he need to be around for CNY. Well, KC need to be back before CNY eve too.. and I already promised him that we'll be back by 30th night. Sofian and him are confirmed. I'm trying to swap with this guy from HAD so that I can get the 10-14feb slot, but if I cant get it, then no way I'm going to just let go of the bungalow and let HDB deduct $200 from my salary for nothing. Maybe Merv is still angry with KC for not picking up the phone. Hey its just one incident. He is terribly busy cos he's having a major implementation this week. I can understand that, next weekend, its my turn to roll-out my system, and no one will be able to contact me next weekend. I hope Merv realise that KC has no ill-intention towards him whatsoever, so he shouldnt think otherwise towards KC. The way I see it, its just one little thing blown up. Not EVERYONE is out to get you, Merv. LET'S GO AND HAVE FUN!

posted by zul, 11:36 PM | link | 0 comments |

Finally! Its Saturday and its my off day, so I slept till about 10am. Lots of SMS came in around 11, Erica, Saul, Andrew.. all informing me that CDD has sent out a memo to HDBall about the terms of the SRS. In a nutshell, 1 yr of service = 1 mth, non-tax non-CPF, and including NS!!! That means... quick calculation, let's see.. thats about 6 years of service, so minimum I'll get is about 24k. I still have not counted in the leave for cash thing. I have some serious things to consider man.. Felt lethargic and fat, so I took a quick shower, lied to my mom that I had to go to work, and went to the gym. Ran 5km, felt good about it and then rushed to Suntec City.

The 'Teaching as a Career' seminar started at 230pm. Lots of young fresh diploma/uni grads, some mid-career people too. Pretty good talk, same brainwashing videos on how teaching is THE thing to do. A teacher (HOD from Peirce Sec) talked about how after 6 years as a teacher he has now achieved fulfillment in his life and teaching is so cool cos you play a part in the development of young minds etc etc etc. Well I didnt really buy it, I mean, the pay is quite OK now and I believe the schools have really upgraded in terms of facilities and all, but.. I still have my apprehensions. Why dont I just try to apply to teach at a polytechnic or something, I believe I'm quite qualified to do that. Dont have to go to NIE. Pay's higher. And you'll be teaching much more matured students. But in the first place, why consider teaching? Decisions, decisions.

Mervin smsed and asked whether I wanna watch Hero. So after the seminar ended I went to Eng Wah and book 2 tickets for the 9pm show, cos KC didnt answer my hp call. Later on he called back and said he was at a meeting and he's really busy this week, so maybe we go see another movie (Analyze that?) next week. I hanged out around that area for a while, went to Millenia to get the carrying case for my Nikon Digcam, walked around Marina, got so bored I almost died from it.

Hero was such a letdown. Didnt agree with VV's comments on his weblog... it will definitely NOT win any Academy Awards like Crouching, its not even anywhere near Crouching! Too many theatrics, you get the feeling the effects were added in just for the sake of it. WAAAAAAAAAAYYYY overdone. Like, do we really need millions of arrows rushing down on a calligraphy school when a hundred will do just a good job to kill everybody in it? And the lake scene when they fly all over doing somersaults and dive into the water, to catch fish or something.. I dunno.. the movie is trying to milk all the effects they can get out of every scene. Like after Zhang Yimou has finished with the movie, he lets his special effect guy to completely go overboard on his computer and spoil the entire thing. Its Crouching gone wrong. Its a letdown.

Liverpool plays Southampton tonight!

And I got Jordan's and Jeffrey's pic! Arent they so cool?

Jordan helping his brother Jeff blow the birthday candle
posted by zul, 2:08 AM | link | 0 comments |

Saturday, January 18, 2003

What a FULL DAY!

Woke up at 5, was at the gym by 6. BodyPump as usual by Elizabeth. Kelvin's favourite. Speaking of which, he hasnt been at the gym for so quite some time. I guess married life really takes up all your time.

The moment I stepped into the office, Nor came over and asked what time I need to be at Tuas. Eh? I said I'll go check with NC. It turned out Ricky went straight to the Checkpoint and Jansen will be riding his bike there so somebody has to got to bring the router over. And there was a change of plans, we're gonna replace the old router with the new one at Tuas only, not at the Hub. So off I go at 930, but before that Erica passed me 2 blueberry muffins that she baked. Initially got lost when I reached there, the last time I went was on a taxi and I cant really remember where the Police Office was. Ricky and Jansen came a few minutes after me. Took about 1.5 hours to finish the job and left at 1145am. All of us went our separate ways, Jansen went home, Ricky went to UMCI at Pasir Ris cos he got another job there, so I drove to NTU since it is already so near. I always drop by at NTU whenever I am near the place. Even if to go to the canteen for a while to have lunch. Dont ask me why, I guess I consider the 3 years spent there some of the best days of my life. I'd like to relive it if I could.

When I reached back the office at 240, Nor was already packing up to go home. Continued my work but didnt really feel like doing anything, I was falling asleep in front of the PC anyway. Mervin called and asked what time I can pick him up, I told him I'll leave at exactly 5 on the dot -->>.<<-- Picked him up at Novena and drove straight to Sengkang. We dropped by at Sengkang mall first cos I gotta change to something more comfortable, really needed to get out of my icky office clothes, I got my berms in the trunk and Mervin passed me his yellow t-shirt from home.

When we reached Sengkang Crest, his whole family was already there at the clubhouse. Its a nice condo, right smack in the middle surrounded by HDB Flats. Just next to the mall. People living in the HDB flat next to it can easily look out their windows and look down at the condo's pool. Grace and hubby was bbqing, the kids were playing in the playground (Jeffrey the birthday boy was in a bee suit) and his parents were sitting in the clubhouse talking to other relatives. We sat outside and ate and soon more of his relatives came. Some started talking to me, his dad, Grace, some of his cousins... I felt a little uncomfortable so I went to play with Jordan. That kid reminded me of Mikhail when he was young. Active tyke, running around and shouting his brains out. I love to play with kids, if I have the space to run around and shout without feeling like a schizo, I would. And talking to kids around that age is a hoot. Jordan fell at one stage and sat down and was looking at his bruise, and I told him
Me: You have a bruise
Jordan: What's a brooz?
Me: Its when u fall down and u have a cut and its all red and sometimes it hurts a little. There, see?
Jordan: It only hurts a little
Me: Yeah, sometimes it hurts a lot (and I showed him my dragonboat scar)
Jordan: Boys shouldnt cry when they get hurt

At one point I caught him while he was running and Merv's dad saw us and he shouted, "JORDAN! Let uncle eat.. uncle tired." Then Jordan said in a low voice "Uncle you go eat lah, we play later ok.. Go lah.. eat first. I wait for you." :) Mervin took some pics of us... Merv I want the pics.

We went up to Grace's house for a while to check it out. Its a 2 bedroom apt, smaller compared to her Woodlands HDB flat but the furnishing is nice. Her room is big, but the living room and kitchen is standard HDB size. When we came down to the clubhouse again Jeffrey was about to cut his birthday cake. Quickly ate a slice, gave Victor an angbao and left. It was about 10plus and we didnt really know what to do next so I suggested going to Changi Airport. Another one of my 'dont know where to go so might as well go here and relax' place. Used to go here with Iva a lot. We walked to Coffee Club and sat down in one of those big red sofas, it was comfortable and I was tired so when Merv's colleague called him on his hp and they had this lonnng conversation, I actually fell asleep soundly. I think I went into dreamzone.

We got hungry again (!) so we stopped by at Frankel for coffee and mee goreng. Tomorrow I must run man... Eating mee goreng at this hour. Goodness. I cant really remember what we talked about. Really. When I got home at 2am I was so tired from a full day I took a shower, went online for a while to check emails then plonked myself into bed and slept.

- "Boys dont cry when they get hurt"

posted by zul, 2:35 AM | link | 0 comments |

Thursday, January 16, 2003

I am a B person. For the 3rd straight year.

It didnt affect me the first 2 years I got a B grading for my APA. I guess at that time I thought a 'Very Good' is good enough. But god knows that this year I've put in much more effort in my work than the last 2 years. Thats on top of the SPRC, SLO and ISO14001 shit I was arrowed to do last year. There was of course the relocation to HDB Hub which happened during Nor's 3 months maternity leave and subsequent MCs. I handled it alone, at that time there were no CPs. And for this new IFVS I spent hours in the server room setting up databases and firewalls which were supposed to be handled by the supporting units. Heck, today I spent the entire day with IBM, NC and ITS running around entertaining all of them with their questions (Them: Its your system for the past 3 years, I dont know whats going on.. ok explain to me again). Nor is handling the application portion, she stayed back with the CPs.. they were still working when I left the office at 8pm. Tomorrow NC gonna setup the routers at Tuas and I was supposed to go there to oversee but somebody has got to be at Hub too to swing over the line to the new router when its time.. and Nor said she will be busy and she might take half day anyway... so since I cant be at 2 places at the same time, Jansen and Ricky will go Tuas and I'll stay back at Hub. Dammit. Monday I wanna go to Woodlands.

So a B is a B. But its not an A. I bet all the rest got an A too. THAT guy has been getting As. Is my quality of work not good enough? I guess its very much dependant on your unit head. From the way Lily replied to my sms (I'm the kucing kurap of ISD), I dont think she got an A too. But I think VV got it. I might be wrong. I've more or less made up my mind now on what to do. So why bother? Thats it.. why give a damn. Andrew told me that earlier. (Note to self: Get CIO to write a letter of commendation before he leaves). When I apply for a new job, they're not going to look at my APA. I've already got Letters of Commendation from CEO for my ISO14001 work, from my NS CO for being Best Soldier.. going to get CIO to write me one.. that should count to something... ah forget it.

Oh! In the morning I found out I got the Bintan Bungalow Resort thing for 27-31 Jan. Got all excited and emailed the gang and everybody was making plans and all that. Its a 3 bedroom huge villa with a private pool and a "unique sunken bath" right in front of the master bedroom! And a buggy that you can drive around the entire resort! Wow! Went to tell Nor about it and she said "But the IFVS implementation is on the 26th. There is no way you can go."
I sat in front of her and said "Ok fine.. I'll go on the 28th". She said "No.. its a huge implementation! You're the big guy handling the hardware! What if there are server problems? What if the routers dont work? Even if I say can, Boon Nam wont approve. You cant go for the whole week after implementation, try to swap with somebody else"
OH MAN. THIS SUCKS BIG TIME. I wanted to tell her "So what! I'm a B person! I'm not supposed to care! You're the PL anyway" But I entertained her. I emailed 2 other guys who also got the Bintan thing but at a later date. One said she is not able to and one said he'll get back to me tomorrow. Well dammit if I cant get somebody to swap with me, I'll still go. AND THAT'S THAT. Dont say I didnt try.

Picked Merv up from his home at 830 and we had coffee and wings at Bedok Reservoir KPT. I called Poh halfway and found out he was watching Lord of the Rings with his wife cos today is her birthday. He called me back when the movie ended and talked to me from the cinema exit.. to the lift.. to the MRT station... from Tampines to Eunos, and while walking around Eunos with his wife looking for dinner. I guess that must have pissed Audrey big time cos I heard a "Who's that?" in the background and then Poh said "Zul hold on" and then in the background, shouting "Audrey!!! Where are you going??!!". HAHA. So I told him, hey you better go look for your wife now, and I hung up the phone. That guy is a goof man. Later on Merv used my hp and sms Poh "Mervin wish your wife a happy birthday". Heh. So BIG of him. It was only when I reached home that Poh replied with "Oh thanks, she had a good time tonight". Riiiiight... riiiiight.

So I am not Outstanding. Fine. I will find my place in the sun somewhere else then. I told VV earlier on, I wanna do something great. Like write the Great Singapore Novel. I need a sponsor.

- 'I pass the test,' she said. 'I will diminish, and go into the West, and remain Galadriel.'

posted by zul, 11:06 PM | link | 0 comments |

Wednesday, January 15, 2003

I have a freakin headache now!!! Its pounding man... Just ate 2 panadol. Have not even showered yet..

Probably caused by standing in the server room for the whole day today. The burn-in test completed this morning, then Sulianah came to install ArcServe and Rebecca installed UDB in the afternoon. I love my new servers. Problem is, its not going to be mine for long. Once it goes live, the UDB server will go to DA and the Firewall server goes back to ITS. Damn. I need a new job. With a reduced job scope and no SPRC this year, I'm gonna get bored pretty soon. Apart from that, the whole unit spent 2 hours from 1-3pm brainstorming all possible SSSs. It was quite a funny session, VV cracked some lame jokes which only he can come up with, and Lily was.. well, Lily. Oh, and during lunchtime, I took the train to Orchard to go to the Fila Boutique at Wisma Atria. Couldnt find anything that I like, so I decided I'll give away the voucher to anyone who needs it. Anyone?

The headache started about 4ish. Shih Wee msged whether I wanna run today and I asked Poh Yee whether she wants to, she was trying very hard to persuade us to start running from Hub to Macritchie, through the usual Mac trail then back to the Hub again. Thats more than 10km. Tempting to try. But my slight headache was getting worse so I told them that I wanna run the usual route today. Reached MacRitchie at 610pm and started running at 620pm. Poh Yee ran beside me up to the point just before the turn to Lornie Road where I left her behind and ran ahead all the way to the finishing point. At that time the headache had subsided somehow, so I sent Poh Yee to AMK MRT Station and Shih Wee home then drove to Marine Parade to meet KC and Mervin for dinner. Got stuck at Jalan Eunos though... do you believe this, 2 cars broke down in the middle lane like 500m from each other AND a lane was closed for road works, creating a massive jam.

Reached the Marine Parade MSCP about the same time as KC, then we met Mervin and had dinner at the hawker centre. Usual conversation, his eczema butt problem and how the doctor he saw earlier thought it was some sort of STD, and him trying to persuade KC to go to Jeffrey's birthday bbq rather than the Turf Club. I guess KC has made up his mind about going to the horses, he refused to change plans. Well, somebody has got to compromise.. I'm leaving this to them to settle. What we agreed on now is to watch the movie Hero tomorrow, if time permits. We walked through the NTUC Fairprice that occupied the old library after that. Merv met his old friend Khalid Alsagoff there. Rich guy. Drives a BMW. Went home after that.

The headache got worse the moment I stepped into my bedroom. I'm going to chill in front of the TV now and watch Smallville (I wanna be Clark!), then Enterprise (I wanna be Captain Archer!). Tomorrow is another long day in the server room! IBM and ITS's turn to setup the routers and firewall.

And sayang, selamat malam to you too.
posted by zul, 11:39 PM | link | 0 comments |

Tuesday, January 14, 2003

Its 10 pm and I'm all showered and ready to go to bed. Had a very long day today.

I woke up in the middle of last night and discovered I couldnt move. Again! And after about 4 months of peace. Like all the previous times, I was totally conscious of my surroundings, I know whats happening around me but I just couldnt move. Like somebody pressing on me or something. So I shouted. Like, what else can you do? And I guess it woke the family up. I can see the door opening, here comes 1st brother now (See? Every single time, I can even see who the person is coming into my room.. Weird) ... quickly dammit before I lose my breath. When I manage to snap out of my ..errr... 'frozen' state, I looked at the watch and it was 420am. 40 more minutes to 5. I might as well drag myself out of bed and take a shower.

Left the house at about 545 and reached the gym at 610am. Oh looky here, Iva's here too. We went to the BodyPump class at 7, she noticed my new shoes and said it looked like my old Reebok. She looks different actually, rebonded her hair or something. And much slimmer. Hmmm.

Spent the entire day in the server room at work. My new servers are here! Compaq Proliant DL-380 G2 servers. They delivered right about noon and the engineers came at 2pm and took up to 6pm to set it up. Had a good lunch break though, Rhymie came over to my cube and Lily dropped in too. He ate his Ice Kachang which Jabar bought for him (how nice) and passed me 3 CDs of Sex and the City. I'm gonna watch it right after I'm finished blogging.

Left office just about 7pm and went to Raffles City cos I wanted to buy something at the Fila boutique using my voucher before it expired on the 20th. Very disappointed when I found out that they're no longer selling the running shoes+shorts combo I saw last year. Mervin called and asked whether I wanted to have coffee. Why not? Left the place and drove to Eunos KPT. Over Rojak and curry puff, he complained about having eczema (spelling?) breaking out all over his butt. Stress from work. Heh, well, nobody's gonna want you now. He called his brother on the phone and just told him "I'm bringing over 2 friends over to Jeffrey's birthday party on Friday, ok?" and hung up. He GOOD ah. We're supposed to go to the Turf Club on Friday, KC had suggested it, but Mervin dont like KC to be even near gambling places, so he wants us to go to his niece's birthday party instead. I'm fine with both. We left at 9 and I reached home half an hour later.

"I guess you heard, I guess you know
In time I'd have told you, but I guess I'm too slow.
And it's overly romantic but I know that it's real
I hope you don't you mind if I say what I feel.....

I supposed that you'll be leaving but I want you to know
Part of you stays with me even after you go"

- Southern Sons

posted by zul, 10:25 PM | link | 0 comments |

Monday, January 13, 2003

I ran again today.

Right after work, me, Shih Wee and Poh Yee went to Macritchie and started running at about 6. She insisted we start from the toilet area. (We usually start running at the area after the gazebos around the lake.) It was a good run, I completed the 5.2k trail in about 26minutes. We took some pics after that, and an old man which parked next to my car started to talk to Poh Yee about how there is another trail which went the complete opposite direction. He call it the 'Jungle Trail' and refer to the usual trail as the 'Tourist Trail'. He said we've GOT to try the jungle trail as it is much much more challenging (upslopes) and more scenic. Well, maybe next time, sir. Sounds interesting. I asked him where he is working and he said "I'm retired". Saw a bag of golf clubs in his boot and thought to myself.. Ah... this is the life. I wanna retire like this, go for leisurely runs, have a golf game with my buddies if I feel like it. Drive around in my BMW and enjoy life. He asked us where we're working and I said "HDB". He said "You've got a big brand new office huh... I went there once". And he quipped "People's money" just before we said our goodbyes. Heh. What a good reputation we have. I feel proud.

Shih Wee and me after the run

My cactus died. The one in the office. Erica gave that cactus to me about a year ago. It had only one yellow .. stick (?) coming out when I first got it. And then it grew 2 more, and then still 2 more. Until it looked like 2 hands and 2 legs sticking out. Saul said I watered it too much. Well, I think it just got tired of growing any more limbs and decided its time to go to the big garden in the sky. So I pulled off its limbs, walked over to Wee Wah's cube and said.. Nahhh for you. 15 mins later he walked into my cube and gave this .. thing to me. It was soo cool. He actually pinned down all 5 limbs of the cactus on a used calendar board and labelled each one of them as "Mervin, KC, Daniel, Sofian" and the last one he put as "Zul the greatest". He chose the biggest limb for that. Haha I supposed the limbs represents our own genitalia. And on the opposite of the calendar he wrote "My parting gift for a great neighbour".

Wee Wah's work of Art.

I swear this guy really knows how to make me laugh in the office. He'll be transferred to OAS unit in Feb and I'm gonna get a new neighbour.. a girlie girl called Hui Meen. I dont know how its gonna be, the relationship between the 2 cubes. All I know is, I can guarantee I wont have that much fun with her as I did with VV.

Had my APA with Boon Nam about 430. I think he is a great Unit Head and all that but he really knows what to say to his unit members to make them feel important. I think he said the same things to all of us.. about how our work is of good quality and how we are somewhere between Outstanding and Very Good but he cant give Outstanding to too many people, so he'll let you know. He did say though that people look up to me and I am a natural born leader. How typical of a Leo, I thought. Well its all a myth, like Wee Wah always told me. Well myth or not, its the impression that counts. I told him after SPRC and the new IFVS, my job scope will be greatly reduced and I dont wanna be somewhere where I got nothing to do, so you can post me out if you want. He asked me what I like to do and after hearing it, he said "You are more suitable for SM". Heh. Whatever. Just post me out. But it wont really matter if I take the SRS. Briefing by CEO is on the 29th so I'll decide after that. Anyway I found out from Shih Wee that he got Outstanding and THAT guy too has been getting Outstanding ever since the first APA. I think Boon Nam should just go ahead and award all of us Outstanding. Hmph. Halllooooooooooooo Booon... your own unit people are losing out due to your uncalled for reservations in awarding too many As...

I dropped off Poh Yee at AMK MRT station and Shih Wee at the bus stop outside his house after the run and made my way to Chai Chee after that. KC reached there first and Mervin walked out of the Technopark across the street just seconds later. We discussed some things over tea, including how to get rich in the quickest possible time. A lot of ideas were thrown around, but the bottomline is all of us dont have the courage nor the resources to dump money as capital. Still in discussion mode. Left the place at 10 and reached home 20 minutes later.

I got my new driving license in the mail today! Really cool, very colourful. Only thing is, I dont like the photo on it. Mine. Oh well.
posted by zul, 11:48 PM | link | 0 comments |

Sunday, January 12, 2003

Its already Sunday night and I just got home from a dinner treat Mak Hitam gave to the whole family at Restu. Same old stuff. She got her CPF money, 12k I think. Gave me 100 bucks. Ahhhh.. petrol money :)

Before that I was at Fariz's wedding at Tampines. Picked Teffy up from the MRT station and reached there about 1pm. We're supposed to be helpers of some sort. Met the parents and we were briefed on our tasks. We were ushers, supposed to show people where to sit, and point out to HDB staff who Fariz's parents are so that they know who to give the money packets to. Pretty easy. About 2pm my colleagues started coming, Kel and wife, Saul, Ah Keong, then .. QM folks, the UHs and SHs, Nor too.. almost everybody. Lily told me she's gonna come with VV but VV came with the RRS gang. Asked him if he knows where Lily is, he said she's gonna come soon. And she did come, alone. Well. Sources told me that THAT guy is waiting for her at Tampines Mall. There goes my mood for the rest of the day. God knows I took out my hp like more than ten times throughout the day, started to write some SMS to her and then decided.. naaahhh. I cant even take it if I know my SMS's gonna reach her when that guy's around her.

Chatted with Kenneth, Teffy, Jabar and Mustapha till about 5 then left. Tef kept asking me whether I'm going to do anything about Nor. I just dont wanna talk about it at that time when I'm thinking about somebody else. Dropped him off at the Hub and went to the gym. Ran for 5km. I love to run. It makes me kinda at peace, I think about a lot of things when I run and when I finished, it makes me high. Went to pick the family up at my Aunt's place after that to go for the dinner treat.

Beng suggested I focus more on what I think rather than what I do hour by hour, to make this blog more interesting. I couldnt agree more, so I'm gonna try to do that from now onwards.

Went to work as usual, did my APA. Lily started msging again. But it just isnt the same like last time. I keep thinking about how she's going to meet that guy later anyway. Left at exactly 1pm to go to the gym and then ran for 5km. It was a good run, I kinda resolve some issues in my head. Met Mervin at 330 at Suntec and had tea at Marche. His treat. He went on and on and on about my friends. Hey, I am NOT gonna take sides on this one. But he did make an effort to reconcile with KC. And a funny reconciliation it was! Well with Merv, everything's funny.

Collected my free Swatch watch (gift from DBS Cashline) after that and drove to Katong. Had coffee at Cafe Cartel and chatted for more than 2 hours! I love to sit there and people-watch, the place is quite a happening spot especially on weekends. He had this whole skit going on about his Card Centre call-in customers and how one caller was completely inconsolable when she demanded DBS waived her $2 finance charge or something. HEhehhhehe. Had dinner at Padi's Nasi Padang after that. While walking there I saw Andrew and Jaf having their dinner at Pizza Hut. They saw me too. Well its not a secret anyway, everybody in the office knows they're a couple.

At about 8 we left and made our way to McD Kallang. KC and CK came at 9plus. Dai Dee TIME! Hahahahhahah. CK actually just booked out of camp about 5pm, he's still in the middle of his ICT. Played about 30 games and ended about midnight. Mervin had this whole MOSQUITO thing going on.. "I'm a mosquito bzzzzzzz"... some sort of hilarious erotic thing about KC and a money plant hhahahahah. And guess what? For the first time in months, I won 10 bucks! KC was hungry so we went for supper at Eunos KPT. Sent CK and Mervin home and reached home about 2am. Mom went on and on about how I dont tell her where I am most of the time and how I dont answer her phonecalls etc etc etc. Whatever, I'm tired...

AND OH! Liverpool 1 - Aston Villa 1
I swear my team is cursed. Saw the highlights just now and some sort of evil force field is preventing the ball from entering the net. I suspect Ferguson and the Devil is behind all this. My patience is wearing thin.
posted by zul, 10:16 PM | link | 0 comments |

Saturday, January 11, 2003


Its way past midnight, 103am. Everybody's asleep except Allan, he's probably not working tomorrow.

Nothing much happened in the office. Managed to get SCS to deliver the harddisks together with the servers next Tuesday. Really tight deadline man. Had a ISO14001 Committee meeting in the morning. The gang stayed back after that to discuss about the impending doom. Oh, during lunchtime, I skipped Friday prayers (the rationale is, I've attended the last 2 Friday prayers and so this week, I can be excused. HAH!). Well I GOT to send my car to the workshop to replace the broken windscreen today. Left the office at 1220 and reached the workshop at Sin Ming 20 mins later. Was told the car will be ready by 5pm so I took a bus to Orchard Road. Had Black Pepper Beef Stew at Scotts Picnic FoodCourt.. good man! Took the MRT back to the office after that.

Oh man I just like, fell asleep on the freakin keyboard. Its too late and I'm tired. Will continue this tomorrow. Nite.

726am and i just got out of the shower. Where was I... let's see... I took a cab back to the workshop at about 445 and collected the car back. They just changed the windscreen, that's all. Kena Sai.. thought they would change the front bumper as well. Drove back to office and waited for the guys to call me. Sofian came first, I met him outside BreadTalk (saw THAT guy buying green tea cake, probably its for his dear Lily... how SWEET. well I used to do that. I wonder if she remembers?). Brought Sofian up to the Nexus, Daniel came at about 710 and we went to the NTUC FoodFare to have dinner. KC joined us there. Left at about 8ish. Everybody took my car and left KC's car back at the Hub.

First stop, we went to Andrew Road, then turned into Lor Ma.. something. Past the RDA place then drove slightly further down to the junction leading up to the mosque. Drove up the slope and made a U-turn. It didnt feel as creepy as that night, there were a few guys praying inside. Probably because it was still too early. Went out to Andrew Road again and drove past some huge mansions. I mean, HUGE! Took a pic of one. Will put it up once I downloaded it. When we passed by CBC, Sofian saw Mark Waite (That angmoh teacher from Moulmein High) and we thought of staying back to see whether Cynthia Koh will come out from inside too. Heh. Went to Lornie Road then made a turn into Sime Road and found the Kheam Hock Road. Bingo. Thats where Kopi Hill is. The cemetary. But the main gate was closed! A sign says it closes everyday at 530pm. So we parked the car and walked through the side entrance of the gate into the cemetary. Creeeeeepy. 4 of us.. just walked and walked, past tombstones and graves and whatever statues or structures that was built around it. Didnt wanna shine my torchlight on it. Reached this wide open roundabout. It was not that dark actually, pretty good moonlight (even though the moon was only a small crescent). Walked for about 500m more when Sofian stopped dead in his tracks.
Yan: Did you hear that?
KC: Ya..
Dan: Um..
Me: ............
Yan: Lets turn around
Me: ..............
And they turned around and started walking faster and faster. Heck, if somebody started running, and I think panic will set in and everybody else will run too. But I didnt hear anything. Hmmm. Just before the entrance we decided to take a right turn and walked down another path which lead to more tombstones and Chinese graves. And deep inside, we can actually see the back of a few big houses, with open spacious well tendered lawns. There are even horse statues 'grazing' the lawn. This is disgusting man. If you view the houses from Lornie Road, I dont think you will even know they existed. Who the fuck lives here?

We turned around after about 15mins and walked back to the entrance. Once outside, Sofian said he heard some kinda grunting noises around the area where he went kecut. Dan and KC heard it too somehow. Not me. I didnt. I think at that time I had a tune in my head. Singing a love song and thinking about somebody probably. Well. Got in the car and drove off to Adam Road for supper. Saw a lot of young punks, JC students from CJC and HCJC. Felt so old looking at them! The wild exuberance of youth! Damn.

SPOTTED! Agent Dan and Agent KC at Adam Road

Left the place at 11 and drove back to the Hub. KC collected his car and sent Daniel home. Me and Sofian decided we could squeeze in one more place, so we drove to Labrador Park. Tried driving up the hill but it was still closed, just like the last time when me, Merv, KC and CK went there during the fasting month. Sofian has never been there so I drove to the other carpark, the jetty area facing Sentosa. Showed him where the supposed tunnels are and the trails up the hill. He said he might come back some other day to trek up, I might join him if I'm free. Went home after that.

Mervin called/SMS like 4-5 times that night. But either I was driving, in the cemetary or had my hands busy. As bird once remarked, Merv have the uncanny ability to know the worst exact moment for you to answer phone calls, and then he'll call. I sms him when I got home but he didnt answer so I went to sleep. This morning there were 2 missed calls and an sms that says "1pm" from him. Supposed to meet him today cos he wants to treat me to tea at Marche. Think I'll go gym for a run after work before meeting him. Gotta keep this up.

"I dont care if it hurts, I wanna have control,
I wanna perfect body, I wanna perfect soul"

- Radiohead

posted by zul, 1:59 AM | link | 0 comments |

Thursday, January 09, 2003

Liverpool 1 - Sheffield United 2


That just sums up my mood for the day. Just yesterday Kok Ching went to my cube and wrote the name 'Michael Tonge' on the white board and said "Look out for this guy tonight. Liverpool is buying him".
And so Michael Tonge scored 2 late goals in the last 15 mins and cancelled out Neil Mellor's goal in the first half. Oh well. I sms Sofian the night before to wake me up at 4am, but obviously he did not. Woke up at 530am and was too zonked out to go to the gym. Slept again till 7! Reached office at 830 and was busy all the way, meeting in the morning with Car Parks ppl, meeting in the afternoon with NC, ITS and IBM. Went out for lunch with the IFVS Team CPs (Beth, Gladys, Shekar, Dilip and Ferdinand) and Nor. We took the MRT to Novena and ate at BK. It's Glady's last day of work this Saturday. She is taking a loooong break to take care of her baby.

On a lighter note Wee Wah was still burning his BelAir, 3 consecutive days already. Free aromatherapy! Thats some expensive air I'm breathing. I think each container costs more than a hundred bucks? He's still trying to get me into the MLM business. After e.excel, I'm not so sure I should cos I know I wont have the discipline nor the drive to make it work. I'll do it when I think I'm ready. Not now.

Lily asked about my Macritchie run (she read the entry yesterday) and I told her I asked Shih Wee to join me cos I really really wanted to go for my Macritchie runs again. She asked if I already fixed my run days, I told her, Mondays and Wednesdays. And she flipped cos I think she already fixed with that guy to run on those days too. So what. I decided on those days before talking to her. She said that one of use should change our run days, I wanted to say, hey why should we? Its a public place, you can run even if I'm there, besides, that guy wont be able to catch up with me anyway. But all I said was, "I wont change". So she said she'll change and dont want to see me at that place.


Mervin called about 3pm to ask about something (I cant really remember about what now), I asked him whether he's free for coffee in the evening, but he said he's gonna work till late. So about 6pm I went to the gym. Met Junia outside the gym at 645 to take the form for my dad, ran 5km and then went for the 740 BodyPump class. Toni was the instructor, she's kinda cool, she played 'Heaven' for the Backtrack and that 'Hold me in your arms' song for the Lunges. Gotta download that mp3. Dont have to go to gym tomorrow morning then. Dont have to meet Iva.

Reached home at 10pm. Waiting for Sofian to email us the itinerary for tomorrow's outing. Looking forward to meeting them.


posted by zul, 10:12 PM | link | 0 comments |

Tuesday, January 07, 2003

Woke up at 630, went to mom's room and slept again beside her till 645, before finally forcing myself to take a shower. Got out at 715am and guess what, I went back to my bedroom and slept again on the floor till 745. zzzz arghghgh I cant take this no more.

Was out with the boys last nite. Picked Daniel up at Park Mall and we proceeded on to Millenia Walk. Sofian and Kian Chai reached the place together at about 715. KC had some free waffle ice cream + coffee vouchers for Padalum so we went there for Dinner. The spread ->
Pasta Chicken Cheese for me
Steak for Dan and KC
Garlic Bread and a big bowl of fries for Sofian (his usual)
Spring Chicken for all of us to share.
AND of course, the aforementioned waffle ice-cream and coffee for everyone.

Talked about the usual stuff, EPL, babes, porn etc. Somehow the subject of looking for the supernatural came up again, as is the case whenever Sofian is around, and somebody (I cant remember who) suggested going to Mount Pleasant area. Now there's a creepy place. I remember when Iva and me were still together, I used to drive along that road to go to her house and everytime, I would feel some sort of... u know.. chill. I remember also about Gymkhana Ave, that little slip road off Mt Pleasant, and how I've always been curious to turn in and find out where the road leads to. So it was decided, the fellowship will drive there tonight and see if there are Urukhais hiding in the burrows of Pleasantville.

Left Millenia at 945, and reached Mount Doom at about 1015... My car was leading, Sofian beside me, and KC and Daniel followed us. I swerved into Gymkhana Ave and lo and behold.. creepy big houses on either side, pitch dark, some uninhabited (is that a proper word?). I just drove on and the 2 way road became a single narrow lane, just wide enough for a car to pass through. Natural drains on either side. I wouldn’t have enough space to turn the car around if something happened. So I just drove on… pass big creepy trees and just total darkness. Fangorn Forest! The last march of the Ents!

The road became so narrow that I almost manoeuvred the car down a tiny stream running across the road. A few metres from there, a junction appeared, one going straight, the other leading up a slope to a mosque. This must be the creepiest mosque in Singapore. Sofian remarked, if there’s a mosque, there’s a cemetery nearby (Dan later confirmed that he saw some graves around the mosque). The road leading straight was even narrower! And there were no more streetlights after that. So I signalled KC to make use of the junction to reverse his car and drive out.

We drove to Upper Thomson Road (Casuarina area) and had coffee there. Us guys and Iva once went to that very coffeeshop after the World Cup Final and had prata. Everybody was excited, Sofian wanted to go there again, showing us the Street Directory and how the road lead to Andrew Road beside CBC and Dan recalled how that area is full of Chinese graves. KC suggested we drive down Lower Peirce Reservoir Road. I thought, what the heck, we're in the area anyway, so why not? I used to drive down that road with Iva, we would go to the Reservoir area, sit at the edge, throw stones and talk about stuff. Once .. er, I digress. God that whole area remind me of her.

We left the coffeeshop at about 11 and drove down that long and winding road, looking out for any unusual nocturnal activities (and monkeys). But the road to the reservoir was closed! So on we went and finally exited along Yio Chu Kang Road. I sent Sofian home, and Kian Chai sent Daniel. Reached Pasir Ris at midnight exactly.

But that was last nite..

Today, today... I woke up again at 745, got dressed, went out of the house at 805. Fine, I thought, I still have 25mins to get to work. But then there was a jam at PIE (accident @ Paya Lebar) and I ended up reaching the office at 905. Ho Ho.
Nothing much happened in the office, ignored Lily for most of the day, felt low down bad but, hey, I cannot pretend I'm all fine and dandy with it. Not anymore. Gave her this blog address. OOps. She's gonna read this.

Went to Macritchie for a run after work with Shih Wee. (Think I'll call him this from now on, instead of Sean. Dont ask why). This was the first time I went to Macritchie for a run since moving to Toa Payoh! Sigh.... thought of those days when me, Lily and Shih Wee would take THAT guy's car and we would go for runs almost every week and then we would chill out after that. I've got so much to write about those days. Well, maybe some other time. This entry is getting too long anyway.

It was quite a good run, the weather was cool (it rained the whole day before that), I got my brand new shoes all muddy, but I'm happy I can still complete the trail. Think it was 27minutes. We went to Serangoon Gardens Hawker Centre after that. Roti John and soya bean curd was all we had, I wanted to eat dinner at home. Since it was still early, we drove to Jalan Kayu and had Paper Prata and Tehchino. Left at 9. Shih Wee took 103 home, I called Junia to see whether I can meet her for a while to get the form for my dad but she didnt answer so drove I all the way home.

Some pics..
Me and Kian Chai on the last day of 2002! At East Coast Beach, Mervin took the pic

KL pics
Me, Sofian and Kian Chai at Batu Caves

I like this pose. Dont they look mean? Heh

I'm just testing out putting photos directly into the logs... will put more relevant pics in the future.

posted by zul, 12:50 PM | link | 0 comments |