Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Calvin's 12 Layer

Yeah!! My exam just over at 11.25am this morning. After weeks of trying so hard to keep my laptop away from my view, I can finally enjoy myself already. Talking about exams, it was okay, but a bit cacat-ed from the previous one. Never mind, over already. Now it's my time to enjoy. Talking about enjoy, I still got a few asses and reports to be done. One ass which is due tomorrow. Sienz...
But I don't care about those asses and reports. Not even my exams results even though they'll be out from tomorrow onwards. But I hope they will be fine. Now is my time to enjoy to the fullest. First is of course taking my laptop away from my Mumu (ask me if you want to know what Mumu is) as I've been letting him playing with my laptop while I study for the past week. Then there's this Nagaoka Fireworks Festival which I blogged before not long ago. After that, it will be trips, trips and trips!
Since my exam is over, I will be free as ever again. You won't be seeing me offline in MSN anymore (although I was just putting offline mode during that period). And the past 2 days has been one of my happiest moment for some time already. It was for some reasons which I won't be disclosing them here ^.-
I got 3 tags today. I know it's a lot but since my exam is over, I will do those. For one of the tag, I got it kinda long time ago which was on 8 different hairstyle. I will be doing that later. Today, I'll be doing the tag from Clement.
Layer 1: On the Outside
Name: Calvin Ong *** ***
Birth Date: April 07, 1987
Current Status: Must I state this?
Eye Color: Black and a bit brownish
Hair Color: Green! no la, black actually
Layer 2: On the Inside
My Heritage: Instead of pure Chinese, I guess I will go for Rojak
My Fears: Watching horror movies. Scare myself to half life nia!
My Weaknesses: Girls who cry in front of me (girls, now you've known that, you better never do that to me!)
My Perfect Pizza: My own baked hangus-ed pizza
Layer 3: Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow
My first thoughts waking up: Can I continue my sleep?
My bedtime: 1am
My Most Missed Memory: Please don't make me emo again
Layer 4: My Pick
Pepsi or Coke: Coke
McDonald's or Burger King: Neither. I eat Marrybrown! Haha, just trying to be lame!
Single or Group Dates: Single
Adidas or Nike: Both
Tea or Nestea: Tea
Chocolate or Vanilla: Chocolate
Cappucino or Coffee: Cappucino (although I don't take them much)
Layer 5: Do You...
Smoke: Never
Curse: Occasionally, when I'm really pissed off
Take a Shower: Yes
Have a Crush: Used to
Go to School: I don't go to school. I go to sekolah!
Want to Get Married: Isn't it obvious?
Believe in Yourself: Most of the time
Think You're a Health Freak: Not really, but can say so
Layer 6: In the Past
Gone to the Mall: Which mall?
Been on Stage: Yes
Eaten Sushi: Can you avoid sushi when you are in Japan?
Dyed Your Hair: Never, but soon
Layer 7: Have You Ever...
Played a Stripping Game: Tell me if you want to try it with me!
Changed Who You Were to Fit In: Yes
Layer 8: Age You're Hoping to...
Get Married: When the time is right ^.-
Layer 9: In a Girl
Best Eye Color: I don't mind
Best Hair Color: Black?
Short or Long Hair: I prefer long
Layer 10: What You Were Doing
A Minute Ago: Chatting with her while doing this tag
An Hour Ago: Went to do some groceries
Four and a Half Hours ago: Sitting for my last paper - Physics
A Year Ago: Having my Japanese speech contest
Layer 11: Finish The Sentences
I love: You (I know you will be reading this)
I feel: High
I hate: No one
I hide: Mumu
I miss: You
I need: You
Layer 12: Tag 7 People
#2: Joann (You still owe me the last tag. This makes it the second)
#4: June
#6: Michelle (You also still owe me one tag!)
#7: Tang Yii
And by the way, someone just made me drool for something.
Next time, please be more considerate okay? I know I can't get char siew and wantan in Japan! Plus that cili jeruk! OMG, can drool like mad!

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Happy Birthday, Mi

Today's post is dedicated to my mum.
with mum celebrating my 5th birthday (for once, you can call me a small kid)
I will try to keep this short and sweet rather than being too emo. But I just can't stop myself from writing some stuff in this post.
One of the most common thing that will happen when my mum talk to someone new is that they will start the conversation in Malay. Yes, they thought my mum is a Malay just by her looks. I just couldn't understand why. Maybe since I have grown up with my mum for the past 20 years, that had never made me feel she looked like a Malay.
I just wonder one thing. Which part made my mum looks like a Malay? Perhaps it is because she is mixed blood. Having said that, there's actually an advantage to that. For example, when buying stuff especially in the market, my mum will usually talk to those mak cik and pak cik using the usual Malay style.
Instead of "ini telung satu kati berapa?", it would be something like "terung ni sekati brape?"
Hearing my mum talking in such way, and with her Malay looks, they will think that she is a Malay. Most often than not, the stuff will come cheaper compared to some Chinese who are buying from them. And when they pass the stuff to my mum, they will say "Pak cik (or mak cik) jual, ya". That is a common thing whenever there's a business between Malay. So my mum will answer "ya, beli".
I've seen that happened so many times already that I will just keep my silence for most of the time and avoid talking Chinese to my mum, or else the pak cik and mak cik will surely got terkejut katak.
Another thing is that my mum will do her best to get what I want (that's why I'm such a spoilt brat! :P). But I'm not saying I was taking advantage on her for that. One of the reason why I'm here in Japan today is all because of her, making the effort to find out all those stuff regarding my applications after I finished my SPM. Whenever I tell her I don't do so well in my exams, she will still keep her faith in me. This remained until now.
Mi, the love you showered on me, I know I won't be able to repay it back, not even a sea of gold. I'm so sorry for hurting you so many times all these years. I was too innocent that time. I was too rebellious. I was just too naughty.
I know I didn't behave kuai enough when I was still a small kid. But I know you always say that I'm your baby, even though I've all grown up already, right? :P
Well, if you know me well enough, I'm not very good in writing these stuff. But I had tried my best.
Once again, Happy Birthday and stay happy and healthy always, Mi. I love you mi and please take care.
With love,
Calvin

Satay Is Much Better Than Sushi

Will you take a life partner who is from a totally different background form you? This is what I've been thinking since I came to Japan. I know here people have been saying about their kawaii chicks and such stuff. So is there any chance I will get Japanese chick and eventually be my life partner?
The answer is a big NO!
There are quite a number of reasons which I guess this entry will not meet the end if I were to list them down. So, here I'll give the top 3 reason why Calvin will never get a Japanese wife.
#3 Name
When you are married, making kids should be a normal process. When your kids have been made, surely you got to name them. As the Japanese will usually use the guy's surname for their kids, so generally, I will be using Ong for my kids. But then, of course she would want to have some Japanese taste in the name. Lets say I name my child as Yuki Ong. Join them together and you will get YuKiong. Sounds like 'You Kiong!'
Everytime I call her, it's like I'm asking her to kiong! Sorry, that's too horrible.
#2 Size
Size does matter after all. You see, Japanese are generally short. Having said that, there are of course tall ones. As I have mentioned before this, I wouldn't want to have a wife which don't even reach my chest. That will surely men-siasueh-kan both of us. Both of us will looked abnormal. One too short, another one too long. One of the hard part will be when we are walking. My elephant one step will easily be her hamster three steps. Even if I walk a little bit faster, she will be having a 100 metre race on her own.
Kissing part is another thing. It will be either she stand on the chair, or I bend down. Or if we wanted to try the unusual, she can jump and hope that the kiss reaches the right target. But that will be a little dangerous as the chances of her getting her target spot-on is next to zero. So if she missed the target, which I would say almost certain to happen, it will be like a woodpecker getting its beak stuck on a wood and got stuck there like that. She will be having the 'best' lips in the world by that time. Too terrible, horrible and vegetable liao.
I wanted to go even further than just kissing. But I will take the safe route and stop here.
#1 Communication
There will surely no other better reason than this. Communication problem within both of us shouldn't be a big problem even if she fail her England because I can still use my half-passed Japanese. Worst come to worst, we will just be using sign language. But problem crops out when she talk with my parents. I did ask my parents before this how if I really get a Japanese wife eventually.
"You no need to mengada-ngada now. Malisia here so liddat tai pa girls. Even if you marry a Indian also neber mind."
I was actually hoping to get such reply like above. But unfortunately, of all the response I was expecting, this was what I got in return.
"That one I leave it to you liao lor. If you want Japanese, then I won't kong anything also la!"
What does that mean? Telling me to get a Japanese wife or what? But did they ever think what could happen if they are talking to her? It should be something like this. Imagine my wife during the first time meeting my parents.
Jap Wife: Konnichiwa!
Mum: Konichiwa! (this part, my mum still okay)
Jap Wife: Ogenki desuka?
Mum: Wei Calvin, hamik your wife is crapping la? Wa beh chai ee kong ha mik neh (starting to kan cheong already)
Jap Wife: Akiko desu.
Mum: Ei Calvin ar, why your wife asking me to test the kiko shoes la?
By that time, my dad will surely be eager to start enter the conversation already.
Dad: Hi!
Jap Wife: Konnichiwa!
Dad: Err…
Jap Wife: Akiko desu.
Dad: Haik! haik! Honda, Mitsubishi, Toyota! All bely good!
Jap Wife: Nandesuka?
Dad: Suka? Hamik suka bo suka? Lu ee bor meng wa suka yi si bo? Ka lor (basket) la lu. Lu kong hamik? Wa lang beh chai neh. Calvin, lu ka ee kong wa lang mai kong liao neh!
That's a result of a chicken talking to a duck. Nothing surprising. So guys, remember this. Satay will always be much better than sushi. I did say that I'll never get a Japanese girl, right?
But you know what, I never say never.
P/S: Regarding the #2 reason about height, I have no intention whatsoever in insulting anybody which is short. I never thought of doing that. That was just cerita rekaan semata-mata. Tiada berkaitan dengan yang hidup, separuh hidup ataupun yang sudah mati. I hope none of you will take it seriously.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Tomato Chicken

I did mentioned before that I will be posting entries on the stuff I cook every weekends. But doing such way will make some redundant postings as I'm sure I will be repeating the same stuff once in a while.
So, from now on, I will only be posting entries on the food if I come out with a new thing. Although I'm still stuck in the middle of the exam period, I still try something new. I will call it Tomato Chicken.
Before I try cooking it, I called my chef more than 5000 kilometres away from my place to ask how to make the Tomato Chicken. But by the instructions given, it made me even more headache. I was told to use this la, that la until in the end, I said I will do it myself. I just wanted a simple one, and what I got was a super duper complicated recipe.
There was a few point I was worried about cooking this tomato chicken. The two main worrying point is this.
#1: Will my chicken turned hard after I deep fry it?
#2: Will the gravy turn sour if I use too much of tomato ketchup?
Leaving that aside, I prepared my ingredients. Here are some of the ingredients needed.
Sliced chicken, minced garlic, cubed tomatoes and onions plus a beaten egg. Actually the batter made of wheat flour was a mistake. I shouldn't mix the flour with water. Never mind, another lesson learnt. As for the leeks, it's for my side dish.
After cutting those chicken into small pieces, dip them into beaten eggs. Then spread them in wheat flour. Later deep fry them until they turn golden brown and you are done with the first part.
Then using some oil and tumis the garlic, put in the onion and tomatoes and fry them a while. Later put the deep fried chicken. This was the time when I realised I got no tomato ketchup with me.
Again, I started my seludup activity from the kitchen downstairs.
After adding the tomato ketchup and some salt and sugar, stir them a while. And your are done with the Tomato Chicken, which should look something like this.
Remember the two worrying points I mentioned earlier? To my relieve, my chicken was neither hard of sour. It was just as tender, even better than the one I used to have back home. Just one thing I will better it next time - that is by cutting the chicken into smaller pieces.
My just-whack-it second try with tomato didn't disappoint me ^.-
Calvin's personal rating: 8/10
P/S: Although my chicken and my leeks were done already, I got to wait for another half an hour before having the chance to try it, all because I forgot to turn on the switch of my rice cooker!

Will You Do This For Your Sweetheart?

The article above is taken from a newsletter by Nagaoka Municipal which I came across some time ago. It's about the Nagaoka Fireworks Festivals which will be held in early August every year.
For those who don't know about this Fireworks Festivals, let me tell you. Nagaoka has the biggest and best fireworks in whole of Japan. Is that enough to get you have some idea how big is it? I guess so, right?
In the article, it's stated that it's open to anyone who wishes to send their messages during any special occasions, like wedding, new birth and birthday; or to their feelings towards their love ones. The messages will be read out before the launch of the fireworks. Besides that, some might prefer to having a recorded messages by themselves that will be played before the fireworks are launched.
Sounds nice, doesn't it? But not until you get to know how much they'll charge you. I guess you'll be shocked to know that the starting price will be from 45,000yen. That's RM1,500! I know the fireworks here in Japan is far better and nicer than the few-minutes-fireworks in Malaysia. Still, it's quite a big sum, no?
I wanted to send messages myself actually. But after knowing the amount it cost, I might as well play with these.
Please don't tell me I'm a small kid again!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Sado Island - Special Edition (The Return Of The Parrot)

If you still remember, I went for a trip to Sado Island early this month. This is actually a special edition of the trip. In this entry, I will talk about that parrot that was with us throughout the trip.
For some of you who might have know what is all about that parrot, then you can skip this. For those who is still blur about it, then let me give you a brief introduction on this parrot. Throughout the trip in Sado, we was accompanied by this tour guide.
Cut the story short, during the journey in the bus, basically she will talk non-stop while giving description on the interesting places in the island. I thought fine. But then she asked us if we were okay if she sing a song.
Wah, mini concert in the bus ar? We said okay lor. Then when she start singing, I tell you, indescribable. I think this two video will give you the better idea.

There was one time in the bus that we were feeling boring and we though why not ask that parrot sing a song for us.
Me: Wei, so quiet ler. Want ask that parrot sing arh?
Senpai: You don't siao la. Better don't la. Why? You miss her voice la now?
Me: No la, but nice also ma. At least won't be so sien ma.
Senpai: Then you go ask her la.
So we asked her to sing a song. And she sang without any hesitation.
Me: Alamak! Same song again la! I thought maybe she will sing some different song ma. But mana tau...
Senpai: See la you! Regret la now?
Me: A bit la. Hehe...
Senpai: A bit your head la. A lot okay? All also your pasal la. Now I no need to sleep liao!
Haih, straight I got bombed by that senpai. But actually that was nothing as we enjoyed her mini concert. Just hear at the sound effect we made. Hai! Hai! Hai! ^.^

Actually I wanted to upload this two video in the Sado entries. But then, the size was too big. So I tried something different. I played them on my laptop and retook the video.
So, as expected, the quality isn't at the best. I hope you'll bear with these two video. They are still funny though. Enjoy :)

Thursday, July 26, 2007

New Term Of Stress Management

stress [ stress ]
noun (plural stress·es)
Definition:

1. strain felt by somebody: mental, emotional, or physical strain caused, e.g. by anxiety or overwork. It may cause such symptoms as raised blood pressure or depression.
2. cause of strain: something that causes stress
3. special importance: special emphasis, importance, or significance attached to something
4. emphasis on syllable: the emphasis placed on a sound or syllable by pronouncing it more loudly or forcefully than those surrounding it in the same word or phrase
5. emphasis in poetry: the emphasis placed on a syllable or word as part of the rhythm of a poem or line of poetry
6. accent in music: the emphasis placed on a note as part of the rhythm of a piece of music, or a mark representing this
7. physics force deforming body: a force or system of forces exerted on a body and resulting in deformation or strain

Forget about those definitions. Now let me present you Calvin's New Term Of Stress Management!

Just tell me how you think of my drawings ^.-
This was part of my conversation with Dodo when she wanted to have a ABC class with me. Credits to Dodo for putting together all those pictures. Anyway, there were some questions being asked about my drawing. Below is the original conversation.

DoDo says (9:32 PM):
oi, is that a donkey???
wat da heck!!!
donkey looks like another animal ler
like dog
but oso like a cat
DoDo says (9:37 PM):
ur elephant, trunk cacat one
DoDo says (9:37 PM):
horse???
omg
i thought its an elephant
since when horse got such nose????
DoDo says (9:37 PM):
don make me laugh
i juz had my dinner
omg
damn funny lar u
lucky i din on mic now
else u would be hearing me laugh laugh laugh
DoDo says (9:38 PM):
omg
wat a goat
cacat mia
wats that
like cat mata menonjol
DoDo says (9:39 PM):
omg ..i cant stop laughing
DoDo says (9:39 PM):
lembu???
wait
monkey!!!!!!!!!!!!
DoDo says (9:40 PM):
omg
oi oi oi
stop
i cant stop laughing
DoDo says (9:40 PM):
monkey - crocodile face geh
DoDo says (9:40 PM):
hey hey hey
stop it!!!
i cant stop laughing here man
stomach damn churning now
DoDo says (9:41 PM):
wat orang utan
i c nth
whc part look like orang utan
DoDo says (9:41 PM):
omg
japjapp!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
stop it
my hands r shaking when i type
DoDo says (9:42 PM):
omg ..
wat !!!!!!!!!!!
isnt it the same with niao
the mouth???!!!!!!!!
like sinyu
DoDo says (9:43 PM):
omg ..
i cant stoplaughing
oi..
i anot type laeio
my hands rshoihking
DoDo says (9:44 PM):
y all the head muz be that way
all mata cacat one
DoDo says (9:45 PM):
wat da heck
tikus???
DoDo says (9:45 PM):
wat da!!!!!!!!!!!!
this?!!!!!!!1
u called it umbrella???
more like a tree
DoDo says (9:46 PM):
vampire konon
like orange
DoDo says (9:46 PM):
whale got pimples mia
DoDo says (9:46 PM):
like fish bone
DoDo says (9:47 PM):
u good u good
DoDo says (9:47 PM):
make me laughing non stop
DoDo says (9:47 PM):
wats yak???
obese cat ar?
DoDo says (9:47 PM):
hey later make sure u scroll up n laugh it urself
hahaha
damn funny mia
Here's the complete evaluation I got for my drawings.
A: like an apple
B: like a babi
C: a cat with boobs
D: donkeycat look
E: cacat egg
E: elephant doing its ballet dance tip toeing. why fat n short legs?
F: flower yang dah layu
G: goatcat tail. wat happen to its mouth?
H: horsedick face. why got such nose?
I: island. ok lar, pass
J: no idea
K: same like the goatcat tail look
L: aint knw wat that was. got whiskers somemore
M: doesnt seem like a monkey to me
N: ok lar, pass la. juz hate that mouth, like sinyu from doreamon
O: the worst. aint knw whc part of it like orang utan
P: like chu pa jiet
Q: dat duck seems like wana learn how to fly wit its short wings
R: lagi funny. obese rabbit sitting in a cat basket
S: like snake suffer from brain tumour ar
T: tikus. the teeth cacat one
U: umbrella more like a tree to me
V: vampire konon. seems like those orange or pacman
W: whale wit zits
X: x-ray. more like a fish bone
Y: yak no idea. more like an obese cat to me
Z: zebra. yeah with those lines drawn but the mouth? its chin cacat mia, jaw line not good issit? the face, terkelengtong!
What do you think? Any new comments to add to my drawings?

Supper During Exam

Staying up during the exam period must be very common for us. I do stay up as well, but not to the extend of those Japanese. Talking about the Japanese, when they play, they play hard. When they study, they study hard and mad.
I used to hear that when they study, they will be tying a scarf like around their head with the word Ganbatte written on top of the scarf. But so far, I haven't encountered such things happening in my place.
The canteen is turned into a study area though. This happens everytime during the exams period - to be precise, 2 weeks before the exam starts. These Japanese, they are really mad. One of my friend's study tutor, he will sleep first in the evening and will later stay up throughout the night until the next morning and straight head to the exam hall. I just can't and will never do that.
Talking about staying up late, it's quite common for the stomach will kacau us when we are so nice studying. Maggi mee being the most popular thing to eat I suppose, right? But this time, for the first time, we got something from the canteen. The provide us with some supper.
At first all of the stuff was put inside a white plastic, which I couldn't look through it. Then I took them back to my room and when I opened it, I was surprised to see these things inside it.

Muffin, a bread which I have already had a few bites on it, umeshu jelly (some kind of sake flavoured jelly but taste sweet). Last but not least, a packet of drink. I got this lion thing.

mine on the left while my friend's bunny is on the right

Think I still small kid meh? Like Kodomo Lion nia!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Hope You Are Well

I recently got an email from the Malaysian embassy in Tokyo regarding on Registration of Malaysian Citizen Overseas. Looking at the headings, I was beginning to laugh already.
Hope you are well
.
Maybe some of you may find that there's nothing wrong about it. Yes, true. But I still find it hilarious. My first time seeing something like that from an official source.
I just ignored that email as we have already submitted those forms a few weeks ago. Then last night, I got another email.
Again, it started with "Hope you are well"
I guess this is the way the Japanese start their formal letter or email. But mind you, the language in the email this time was even keng-er. This was what I got last night.
Dear Malaysian Post Graduate Officers / Students in Japan
Hope you are well.
Last time I sent email about Registration Form to you all and I received inquiry
what form I am mentioning...
This time I attach "The Form".
I think most of students in Japan have already submitted it to Embassy
Just in case you have not submitted, please send us.
Thank you very much.
Funahashi
Embassy of Malaysia
You all? Is that a direct translation from anda semua? Or maybe "お前全て" (Omae subete)? Is that actually a formal English?
This time I attach "The Form". Doesn’t that sound so kiddy? It is like when my Art teacher used to tell us,
Teacher: Okay boys, you know what we will draw today?
We: Dunno teacher…
Teacher: This time we draw "The Cow"!
Anyway, he actually saved the best for the last. Please send us. Send them? But send them where? Pluto?
This is what I call Janglish!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Stardy The Right Way

It's already end of July and very soon it will be August, which mean summer holiday for all of us here. Even some of the places, they have already started their holiday. But before I can actually enjoy myself, I still got my finals first.
Never mind. People got said,
Ber-boat-boat into sink,
Ber-swimming-swimming using feather,
Ber-pain-pain sin,
Ber-kacang putih later.
Still remember that?
To be honest, I've started star-dying two weeks ago. But what I can say is that it almost came to nothing as up until last night, I will talk with the book for a few minutes (30 minutes being the most) and I will turn myself to my laptop next to me for the next few hours.
Few minutes of star-dy, then a few hours of online-ing. That is why I put it as star-dy, instead of study. I guess I see stars more when I try my best to hit the books.
Not saying that I'm kiasu or kiasi, but I know that just cannot continue like that. My exam is just two days away. Minus today, it will be only one. Tomorrow is going to be my D-Day. My DADA-Day (ask me if you want to know what that means).
Eventually, I took the last resort. I didn't throw my lappie away. That was close, but I just can't do it to my lover. I know I can't live without it. So from last night, I unplugged all the wires and lock my laptop in the bag, then kept it out of my sight. It really worked. I managed to concentrare more, at least much more compared to before this.
That is why if you might have noticed, I was offline for almost the whole of last night. One of my friend even thought that another earthquake had cut the internet line here. But I also got limits la. In the end, when it was close to midnight, I still took it out to online a while.
Tonight will be the same again. I will be even stricter to myself. I will apply a self-ban to MSN, all chatbox and blog (even my own blog). Tomorrow I will start getting my brain deep fried. I just hope I will go through it nicely. Once I am done with it, then I can really enjoy myself this summer.
Wish me luck in my finals!

Monday, July 23, 2007

J-English Speed Limit

We know that the speed limit in our highway is 110km/hour. As for when having sex, it would be 69km/hour. But have you ever figure out what's the speed limit when you're talking to a Japanese? Let me share with you my experience. This is one of my kisah benar entry in Japan. I'll try to minimise my ketam-ing throughout this entry.
It happened during my first English class which was more than 3 months ago. As usual, new class, new students and hence, the self-introduction part is common. But this time, we didn't go something like
"Good morning ebelione lor. My name is XXX. I am XXX years old. Bla, bla, bla…"
Instead, it was my lecturer (I'll refer it as sensei after this) who did all the questioning part. At first, when I saw him, I thought, "Wah this fella, looks like his English must be damn keng one". I was hoping I was right, until he started introducing me and my another friend (Malaysian too) to the rest of the class.
"Okay class, this year we will be having this two guys as the foreign students in our class. I hope you all will give them co-operation and help them if they need any help."
After explaining all those stuff like the sylabbus and etc, he walked to us. Again I began to kan cheong already. What English should I use? If I use Manglish, guarentee he kiong wan. But if I use those ang moh English, I pulak khiong. Kinda like splitted for choices actually. In the end, I decided to use standard English without those 'meh', 'lah', 'nia', 'mah', 'liao' and 'lor' (sounds like Mehlah Niamah Liao Lor) but at the same time, throw in as much bombastic words that I know even though I know that my vocab just sucks.
This is how he started the conversation. "You're Calvin, right? So Calvin, tell me, where did you studied before kambing (coming) here?"
Mind you, the grammar was okay, but the slang was KO. That time, I started thinking of laughing already, but I still tahan myself not to do that. I didn't wan to offend him on my very first day with him.
So I answered him, "Err…well, we did our preparation centre for almost 2 years in Kuala Lumpur before kambing here. There, we studied a few subjects like Japanese, English, Maths, Physics and Chemistry. When we were in the second year, all was conducted in Japanese though."
Then I noticed his face like turned lain macam. I stopped immediately.
"Wait, hold on, Calvin. What pleasant centre?"
"So you can get massage at that place? I think it should be a very pleasant place hor?"
So, I explained the same thing to him again. But again, he looked blur. I thought, this one really confirm got problem already. But never mind. I give him a break. So, I explained to him again for the third time. But this time, I learned my lesson already. Never beat the speed limit when talking to a Japanese. So, I go really slow with him.
At last, he nodded his head. I'm not sure whether that's a sign indicating that he understands my explanation or he's trying to say "Okay, I've had enough already. Don't make my brain suffer anymore".
After that first day incident, I hardly speak English with him during his English classes anymore. I would rather prefer talking to him with my half-passed Japanese rather than hearing him talking England with me.
If your sensei can't talk decent English already, how about the students? No prize for guessing it correctly. My Japanese friends always asked me to use English when I talk to them. Not wanting to disappoint them, I usually will use the simplest English I could everytime. But mana tau, after a few exchanges (three being the maximum) they will reply me in Japanese.
Even when I talk to them in the first few exchanges, I still must keep the speed limit thing in mind. This time, it's even stricter. I got to say a word, then stop for 20 seconds before continuing with the next word. By the time I'm done with my final word, even me myself will never have any idea about what I was trying to talk about. And for my friend, all I will get is this!
A sesat-ed face!
Moral of the Story: Speak and talk safely and remember your loved ones. Making people to go blur isn't the best thing to do.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Experiment When You Cook

For the last few entries, I've been posting nothing but only food. For some, it is something nice. But I know there will be people who have began to feel sick of looking at the same thing entries over entries. I know you do. Just admit it. Anyway, I will try come out with something different, something that got nothing to do with food very soon.
Not much update this weekend and so, there will only be entries on the weekend cooking. Talking about cooking, you got to experiment with it even there's always the possibility that the final outcome could be a disaster. If you never try, you will never know.
Same goes to my lunch today. After trying the roasted chicken last week, which turned out to be not bad, I tried to modify on it and see if I can make something little different from the last. The ingredients to marinate the chicken stay the same. Chilly powder, curry powder and some jintan manis and salt.
I still ban ban lai-ed marinating my chicken but the only different this time from the last was that there wasn't a quake this time. As for the change this time, I put some slices of cheese in between the chicken as well as on top of it and sprinkle with some black pepper.
I know I used more black pepper than anyone else in my dish. The final outcome after you put the chicken into the oven will be something like this.
The side dishes time time is fried leeks with pork, potato hash and two pieces of pumpkin hashes.
Calvin's personal rating: 8/10
For dinner, my main base were seafoods. I cut the salmon into small pieces (but make sure not too small, or it will hancur when you fry them) and to add to that are cubes of big onions, carrots and capsicums.
I made some prawn tempura as well. Just deep them in flour (tepung gandum), beaten egg and some bread crust. Lastly, deep fry them until they become golden brown.
The egg is actually wasn't on my initial menu. But since there were some leftover of eggs from my prawn tempura, I just fried them. That black black thing wasn't because my egg rentung-ed. It's actually black pepper.
Calvin's personal rating: 8/10
UPDATE: Dodo (used to be Dodo the niao) the bird is actually not only best friend with animals. Dodo the bird is good in food too afterall. After she pointed out to me, I later found out that this chicken I made is actually called Chicken Cordon Bleu. But what I made was something more to this.
Sounds so French, but seriously, I had no idea whatsoever about it before this. Instead of calling it Chicken Cordon Bleu, I will give it some Malaysian taste. I will call it Amalagedon Lam Ker (Armageddon Blue Chicken - Hokkien style).

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Another Weekend Of Cooking

For today's lunch, I opted for something different. For the first time, I tried something with fish. The fish I used was Chilean salmon. It won't really take so much time as all you need to do is dice those salmon, carrots, big onions, capsicums and tumis them a while.
Then get some big tomatoes, cut the top of them and take out the insides of the tomatoes. Later stuff them with the things you had tumis-ed earlier. Top it with slices of cheese and sprinkle some black pepper and a few drops of olive oil (normal oil will be fine)
Mozzarella salmon

Then put them in the oven and baked it for about 8 to 10 minutes. Make sure you have a look at them from time to time in case they become rentung. As a side dish, I just fried some asparagus and that's my lunch for today.

Calvin's personal rating: 5/10

As for dinner, I changed wind and turned to Japanese dish. After the not very successful fried rice ala Japanese last night, I replaced the rice with noodles. I made yaki soba for my dinner. Again, it was quite a simple dish to prepare it. The ingredients are pork, cut cabbage, carrots and some mushrooms. Fried it like our normal mee goreng and you will get something like this.

焼きそば (Yaki soba)

This must be one of the simplest yet delicious meal I've prepared so far. Trust me, it really taste good!

Calvin's personal rating: 8/10

Friday, July 20, 2007

Japanese Fried Rice

As a start for this weekend cooking, I made this Japanese style fried rice after trying with the Chinese style last week. One of the reason I went for fried rice tonight is because I just finished with my Japanese test and it was already almost 7 that time. So to save time, I decided by just making some simple fried rice.
To be honest, I don't really have a clear idea how to prepare a Japanese style fried rice. What I did was I just used whatever I available to me in the fridge while trying as much as I can to make it ala Japanese. Here's what I came out with.
Japanese style fried rice.
The ingredients were just some basic stuff like diced onions and carrots, capsicums and of course slices of pork. Add an egg and some pepper and you will get this plate of Japanese style fried rice.
P/S: This is a non-halal dish.
Calvin's personal rating: 7/10

Ogenkidesuka Tortoise-khun?

I've never had a dog before. Neither did I ever had a cat before. Same goes to hamster and rabbit. I never had those animals before in my house. I did had a chick once. That was actually my sister's chick. Then I fish before. Almost any fish you can think of, I had them before. Goldfish and Japanese carp were the most frequent I had last time.
This makes me wonder now if that is the reason why I'm so goldfish and like to kap siao these days. Maybe the spirit of those fishes beh syiok with me and instead of going to heaven, they remain here and keep on haunting me!
There was also a time when a bird came and make a nest outside my house. I think it happened twice, but I'm not too sure about it. See, told you. I'm a goldfish!
cute right?
The last animal that I had in my house was a pair of tortoises. I don't think they are mine as they were bought while I was studying in KL that time. So, I would say they are my sister's tortoises.
But what I don't understand is that every time I'm back for the weekends or having a sem break, I'm the one who will be doing the cleaning part. Initially, when those two tortoise were still small, it was simple.
October 2005
Catch them and put them in one koleh, throw away the dirty water, replace with a new one, wash the two tortoises and throw them in it and finally feed them with some vege. But living beings grow. As they got bigger and bigger, their legs began to grow those duri stuff.
It's very geli especially you are catching it to bathe them. It is even worse as now, I can't just put them into any koleh. Using a too small koleh will let them crawl out and run away. As I usually bathe them in the toilet, I was worried if they fell into the jamban hole. That will be sayonara for them.
October 2005
After more than 3 months parting with both of them, I began to wonder if how is their current state. Are they still alive or they have joined my goldfish and Japanese carp company?
I guess they are still alive. They are just tortoise! It's just as simple as that. I don't think it's so easy for them to pass away.
March 2006
The problem is that I don't have any idea to see whether they are male of female. If both of them are male, then it's my fault to turn them to be gay. But then, does that term applicable to animal?
That doesn't really matter me. Instead, I just want to have a look on how much they have grown since I left. I hope any of my sisters is reading this.
UPDATE: Again, thanks to Dodo (used to be the bird), I can now differentiate between a male and a female tortoise. To see the difference, click here and here. Dodo must be a real best friend with animals I guess!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Let Me Pass For Once

I just got an ass yesterday morning. It was rather an examination. My first term final examination. It was an English paper. Remember how I screwed up this paper in the mid-exam last two months? To be honest, it wasn't just me who screwed it as the whole class was just the same.
Not wanting that to happen again, I guess my Mr Mort finally decided to change the format of the exam. This is what we were supposed to do.
Chapter 1
Use the following words to make 4 questions and then answer the questions that you made. FROM, SPELL, FIRST, NUMBER.
Chapter 2
Use the following words to make 4 questions and then answer the questions that you made. KIND OF, FAVOURITE, THINK OF, LIKE.
Chapter 3
Use IN, ON, UNDER, NEXT TO to answer 4 questions about the location of 4 different things in your room.
Chapter 4
On page 24 of your textbook, answer b, c and d of Part 2: Excuse me. On the Opposites print, find the antonyms of each adjective.
The problem lies on the forth question (Chapter 4). We were given a map like this.
We are suppose to complete this sentence.
"Excuse me. How do I got to the hotel?"
Even after thinking for so long on which route should I take to go to the hotel, I am still blur. This is why I don't like the English lesson. You may think it's damn easy. But that's the problem.
When something gets too easy, they will penalise you on even a minor mistake. Even worse, they will ask you to memorise stewpid stuff from the text book such as where the characters came from. Since they ask for stewpid stuff, why not I give stewpid answers too, right? So, this is what I will hand up to Mr Mort.
Chapter 1
Q: He where from?
A: Dunno la.
Q: He name how spell?
A: Dunno wat D-O-N-K-E- something la.

Q: Your first time ar?
A: Nola, few times liao.

Q: Number wat time liao?
A: Forget liao la. Cong chi, many la!
Sounds like a rape victim under some interrogation, no? In case you don't know what interrogation is, I'll put it simple. It's soal siasat. Anyway, let me proceed to the second one.
Chapter 2


Q: You like what kind of girl?
A: Eh, why you ask? Dowan tell can onot?
Q: Then, your favourite girl in your class you dun like?
A: Got one girl nia wor.
Q: How you think of her ler?
A: Aiyak, like chameleon lidat lo.
Q: Eh, why chameleon? You like chameleon isit?
A: You siao ah? Of course no la. I like watermelon lagi best!
Before I continue with the next one, one thing I'm very sure so far is that I will fare better this time compared to the last. I've used all those words given. What do you think? Okay or not?
Can pass ar this time?
P/S: I hope you can help me on this as soon as possible as this ass is due on Friday (tomorrow) at 2359. Thanks a lot!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

8 (5) Random Facts About Me

I've began to sense that I'm getting tagged more often than before nowadays. This will be my second tag of the month! That makes me getting tagged once a week. This time, it came from Jaecy.
It should be 8 random facts about myself. But then, after bargaining with her, she made it just 5 for me. See, my bargaining skills is not bad afterall!
By the way, there's even a rule for this tag! Here are the 5 rules:
  1. Each blogger must post these rules first.
  2. Each blogger starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.
  3. Bloggers that are tagged need to write on their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.
  4. At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.
  5. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

So here we go.

  1. I like wantan mee very much. Don't ask me why but I just like them. Whenever I got back from KL everytime, my parents will surely either take me to the wantan mee stall or ta pao for me even by the time I reached Taiping, it's already 1am!
  2. I'm allergic to dust. That is why I don't like cleaning the room. It's not that I'm lazy or what. It's just because when I do those cleaning stuff which has dust on them, I will aa-choo (sneeze?) for sure. When I start aa-choo, then it will continue for the whole day!
  3. I don't watch anime nor read manga. I know this should surprise one or two of you, but even though I'm in Japan at the moment, I just not into these stuff. Again, don't ask me why. At least I watch Doreamon though ^.^
  4. I have huge feet. My shoe size is 10. In Japan, it will be around size 30 or 31 (cm). That makes me have a hard time everytime I go shopping for shoes. First thing I will look will be the size, instead of the design or price. That should answer you, Jaecy.
  5. I just feel that I must put this down again. I don't play basketball. Period.
  6. I said I'll only do 5 random facts about myself, did I? This will be an extra one. After living on this planet for 7404 days, I experienced my first big M6.6 earthquake two days ago.

I guess I will go against one of the rules above. I will break Rule #5 as I decided not to tag anyone this time although I have targeted someone before this.

So, Michelle, thank your lucky stars as you get lucky this time.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Daijoubu?

This afternoon, when I was checking my email, I got an email from one of my Japanese lecturer back in KL, Nezu sensei. When I see the subject of the mail written with 大丈夫?(Daijoubu?), I knew that must be surely about the earthquake yesterday.
Here's what I got.
カルビンさんへ
地震は大丈夫でしたか?
長岡はひどかったでしょう?
ニュースで見て、本当に驚きました。
学校や寮は大丈夫?
とても心配しています。
根津 美美子
Translation (I'm doing a direct translation. So bear with me on the grammar and sentence form. I hope you understand it though)
To Calvin-san,
Earthquake was okay?
Nagaoka was terrible right?
When (I) saw the news, (I was) really shocked.
The school and hostel is okay?
(I'm) very worried now.
Nezu Mimiko
Yes, short. But the concern was there. In fact, this is the only email I got so far asking how am I doing here after the quake. I'm not saying as if others should have emailed me or anything as most of the others also did come and ask me whether I am fine, mostly through MSN.
Not wanting her and the rest in PPKTJ to worry about me and the others here, I replied the mail. It was just a short email as my class was going to start already that time. Here is how it goes.
根津先生へ
心配してくれてありがとうございます。[表現は正でしょうか?]
そうですね。それは初めての経験でした。
だから、最初は「それは地震だ」のが分かりませんでした。
何秒もの後で、気づきました。
その時、私はチャットしていました。
震央は長岡の近くだったので、ここは本当にひどかったです。
私も地震の後テレビを見て、起こった被害にびっくりしました。
学校と寮は大丈夫でした。
先生は安心してください。
皆さんは大丈夫です。:)
カルヴィン
To Nezu sensei,
Worried (about me), thank you (for showing your concern).
Was so (Yalor). That was (my) first experience.
So, at first, "That's an earthquake" thing (I) never knew about it.
Few seconds after, (I) realised (about it).
That time, I was chatting.
The epicentre was near Nagaoka, so here was terrible.
I also, earthquake after, watched TV, shocked with the damage.
The school and hostel was okay.
Sensei please be relieve.
Everybody (here) are okay.
Calvin
Just after I came back from my class, I got a reply from Nezu sensei.
カルヴィンさんへ
良かった・・・・元気そうで安心しました。
マレーシアのニュースでもこの地震について大きく報道されていました。
きっとカルヴィンさんのご家族も心配されたことでしょうね。
マレーシアにはこんなにひどい地震がないので、きっととても恐ろしく思うと思います。
最近、新潟での地震が多くなっていますね。
日本中どこでも同じです、いつも地震の心配がありますから。
台風4号(正しい?)もひどかったようですね。
人間の力では、止めることができないものですが、少なくても自分が被害者にならないように気を付けなければなりません。
本当に気を付けてね。
PPKTJの先生たちも心配していたので、みんなに報告しておきます。
きっと安心するでしょう。 :)
では、またね!
根津 美美子
To Calvin-san,
Good... Sounds so energetic, (I'm) relieved.
Even in Malaysian news, it was widely reported about this earthquake.
(I'm) sure Calvin's family were also worried, right?
In Malaysia, as there's no such terrible earthquake, (I) think sure (you was) really fearful.
Nowadays, the earthquake in Niigata have increased.
The whole Japan, wherever it is, it's the same thing. Always the possibility of an earthquake is there.
Typhoon #4 (Correct?) seemed to be terrible too, right?
With human's energy, stopping (such disaster) is not a possibility, so at least to avoid being the victim, (you) ownself must be careful.
Be really careful, okay?
The sensei in PPKTJ were also worried. So (I will) inform (them about this).
(I'm) sure (they will be) relieved.
Okay, see you!
Nezu Mimiko
Just that I was going to reply this mail from Nezu sensei, came another one. Suddenly I felt the concerns were coming in non-stop. This one was from another sensei, Takata sensei.
カルヴィンさん、こんにちは。
PPKTJの高田です。日本のニュースを見て驚きました。
心配になって、根津先生にメールアドレスを教えてもらって、メールしています。
大丈夫でしたか?
ニュースによると、長岡でも相当揺れが大きかったようですが、被害はありませんでしたか。
根津先生へのメールによると、あまり怖くなかったようですが、驚いたでしょう?
留学生はみんな大丈夫ですか。
授業は続けられるのですか。
死者も出た、ということなので被害は相当ひどいのではないでしょうか。
ライフラインは大丈夫ですか?
マレーシアのご家族もさぞ心配なさっていることと思います。
日本へ行ってまだわずかなのに、地震を体験してしまいましたね。
地震に関しては、日本中どこにも安全な場所はないので、地震を経験するのもやむを得ないことですが、できれば経験したくないですよね。
大きい余震もあると思います。(日本事情で勉強したように)十分に気をつけてくださいね。
外の人たちにも高田が心配していたとお伝え下さい。
高田路子
Thanks for the concerns from all the sensei although I don't think they will be reading this. Now I got to hit the keyboards and reply both of the mails already.
UPDATE: Here's another email that I got just moments ago. This time it was from Kotake sensei who happens to be in Hiroshima.
カルヴィンさん;

地震の被害がなくてよかったですね。
でもこわかったでしょう。広島ではぜんぜん揺れを感じませんでした。
マレーシアの家族には連絡しましたか。学校も寮も被害がなくて
本当によかったけど、まだ余震がある可能性があるそうですから、
どうぞ気をつけてください。

ぜひ広島に来るときは、連絡してください。カルヴィンさんに会えるのが
とても楽しみです。
では、カルヴィンさんの安全をお祈りしています。

小竹 直子

Spooked Like A Tiger That Went Meow

As the title suggests, I had some transformation yesterday. I was like a tiger losing all its stripes. You know, when those tigers saw something surprising and their eyes go terbeliak!
I was like a tiger that went meow yesterday. You know tiger usually roars something like aummm... right? But then, yesterday I transformed from a tiger into a cat that meows and have this look.
As you all should have know by this time, Niigata was hit with a big earthquake yesterday morning. Before this, I was wondering when will I be experiencing an earthquake in Japan. I know it will come, but I never knew when it comes, it was a big one. For the whole day yesterday, I've been playing hide and seek with the earthquake.
Remember that tsunami that happened in December 2004? When I saw those people saying that they were still traumatized by what had happened to them even months have past since that incident, I wasn't really convince and was wondering how can that make them into that state.
But I understand it eventually. Only after I went through myself the earthquake. There are people who kept on telling me to relax and saying that was fun. Yes, I do admit when you are feeling the building are shaking really hard, you will feel yourself like getting a natural massage. That was nice.
But when it doesn't stop and continues for some period of time, it's time to get serious. Damn scary. Honestly, I was kinda traumatized by what had happened for the whole day yesterday.
When I was walking, I feel the floor was shaking. When I'm sitting down, I felt the chair was shaking. When I was eating, I felt my spoon is shaking. When I was typing and doing my asses, I felt my hand was shaking. Even when I'm typing this, I still feel that the floor is shaking. But actually, during all those times, nothing was happening. I was just imagining that it was shaking.
To make sure if that was really a shake or it was just my imagination, I placed a bottle of water next to my window. Whenever I felt a shake, I will be looking at the surface of the water to see if it was really shaking. Most of the time when I look at it, the water was still. So you can say that I've been imaginating it most of the time. Now, I'm damn sensitive, even to the tiniest of shake. But again, I wasn't sure if that's just my imagination.
As I was trying to recover from it, I tried some ways. One of it is of course chatting in MSN. Initially when the morning earthquake hit, I was chatting. When I told them an earthquake was happening, they still could make fun of it.

"Your place is shaking? Oh my fingers are shaking too. Faster take you laptop with you to keep you company!"

"Ohh volcano is erupting in my place! The lavas getting nearer and nearer! Help!!"

Very 'funny'. But I understand. I will do that too if someone suddenly said an earthquake is happening. There was a few who really believed me at that time. One of them is Dodo. Remember her? Dodo the bird!

For the most of the rest of the day, she was the one who open the consultation centre for me although it was a public holiday. And you know what, it was FOC. Even better, there was an OT for the consultation. Where can you find such consultation centre in the whole universe, right?

The Calvin that chatted in MSN yesterday was totally different. Just ask anyone who chatted to me yesterday. I had tons of spelling errors. When I said tons, I really mean it. 'Do me reports' became 'do my reposts' and 'ic ic' became 'ic uc'. Almost every time, I got to re-type my message. As a result, we ended up talking a new language called Tamdre. It is actually a mixture between Tamil and Andre.

Here is part of the crap we had.

DoDo says: well, at least i don speak tamil with u!
DoDo says: later u lagi blur ler, how?
calvin says: dei, tamil yen neh sapre deh?
DoDo says: deh na neh pun neh neh!
calvin says: dei, tamil tarak boleh ciakap, dei tamil saperse!
DoDo says: dell tamil hamil hamik mil mil mil!
calvin says: dei, tamil tarak boleh ciakap, jiangan ciakap tamil sama andre!
DoDo says: andre, andre, hi pa hipa andre andre!
calvin says: dei, lu betui betui bolieh ciakap tamil ka?
DoDo says: abuthe dei! dei andre nathan neh andre neha dil dei huh?
calvin says: porah!! dei tamil dunno, lagi mau ciakap!

OMG! Did you really went through that? Even if you did, please tell me that you don't understand what we were talking or rather ketam-ing about above.

That was just one of the lesson I got from Dodo's EQ Aftermath Consultation Centre. A Tamdre-ing lesson. I also got a singing lesson and also a terbalik-ing words lesson. Sounds cool right? I bet no matter how traumatized you might be after any disaster, this centre will sure have the remedy to cure you.

If not for the EQ-CPR on me for the whole day yesterday, I guess by now, I would be in Tanjung Manggis.

P/S: There were still some small aftershock quake throughout the night yesterday. Even when I hit the bed at 2am, there were still shakes. I felt the bed was shaking. Or was that just another of my imagination?

Monday, July 16, 2007

Earthquake Day Meal

By the time you read this, I guess most of you have known that the northern part of Japan has been hit by an earthquake this morning. It's a holiday today and as usual, I'll be cooking. I will be the only one cooking as for the rest, they eat in the canteen. I later found out that they only got bread for lunch since all the electricity and fire line were cut off. Sounds like so pelarian for them!
After playing hide and seek with the earthquake and some aftershock quakes, I ended up starting cooking at about 3 something. That was my lunch! Imagine that! I was planning to cook ayam panggang or roasted chicken and fried some vegetables.
I went to the kitchen and curi (not curi actually as I've asked from my senpai first already) some of the rempah. I was marinating my chicken with quite a lot of rempah that time. Among others are curry powder, chilly powder, serbuk jintan manis, jintan putih and a few other which I have forgotten. I just whacked everything I could find there.
While I was so syiok doing that to my chicken, there came another aftershock quake. I though it will just last one two seconds. But mana tau, it continued for almost 10 seconds. It was slightly weaker than the one this morning. This time is was about magnitude-5.6.
There I was, with my hands full of curry powder and the announcement was made to assemble at the same place this morning. So I left my chicken there and went out waiting for 30 minutes before continuing my cooking. After cooking with the possibility of a quake to hit any time in my mind, I finally manage to come out with this.
Earthquake Day Meal: White rice, EQ curry roasted chicken and EQ mixed vegetable.
The mixed vegetable consists of cabbage, carrot and mushrooms. As for the main dish, I just roasted the chicken in the oven and sprinkle some cheese on it halfway while it's still in the oven. Lastly, add some black pepper and you will get a EQ curry roasted chicken.
Ohh yea, the dish above is only suitable for consumption on Earthquake Day ^.-
Calvin's personal rating: 6/10

Earthquake Hit Niigata

I know it will come one day. But I just don't know when will that be. It was a normal day this morning. It's a Monday morning. But there were no class today because it's a public holiday in Japan as they celebrate 海の日 (Umi no hi) or Marine's Day today.
I got up at 9.45am, washed my face and turned on my laptop to start my day. After checking for any new emails and doing some usual blog hoppings, I went chatting in CN's chatbox for a while.
this is what I was actually doing when the earthquake hit me
It was 10.13am. Suddenly, I felt something was moving. It slowly got stronger and stronger. Initially I never thought it was an earthquake. See how stewpid I was. It took me about 8 seconds to finally realise that an earthquake was hitting my place.
Realising that it was actually an earthquake, I still took my sweet time continue chatting away, while taking a glimpse around my room. Then I looked outside through my window to enjoy the scenery. I thought it will stop very soon. But that didn't happen. It continued shaking and shaking. I knew instantly that was not a fun thing anymore. The stuff on my table just shaked. Even when I was standing, the floor was like going to crack.
I was searching for my camera and by the time I was going to take the video, it stopped. I know you will be thinking what the hell am I doing by still thinking of taking a video when an earthquake was hitting me. I tell you, I was damn blur at that time. Only after the earthquake stopped that we were told to assemble outside. The quake was easily more than 30 seconds.
Thinking it back now, I got to tell you that it was scary!
Outside, mostly were still in their pyjamas. Luckily I didn't look too bad. After some confirmation on everyone's safety, we just waited outside there for 30 minutes until it's safe for us to return. If there's any aftershock, even a small one, then we will have to wait for another 30 minutes.
I just wonder, how if at every 29th minute of our wait, there come an aftershock each time. That means we won't be returning to our hostel until midnight!
see! still can laugh!
waiting for the the cue to return
That time, what I took along with me was just my camera! Of so many things, I took my camera instead of my handphones or any important documents. All were still smiling away, especially the Japanese.
As for the Malaysians, this was what you get.
blur blur blur all the way
My senpai told us that this was a big one as they have only experienced some small ones last year, around magnitude-4.5. I later found out that the earthquake that hit our place this morning was a magnitude-6.6 quake.
I repeat, a magnitude-6.6 quake!
this is what happened at 10.13am (GMT+9) this morning
That can be considered a big one as the last one to hit Niigata was in October 2004 when a magnitude-6.8 earthquake killed 40 people and damaged more than 6,000 homes. It was the deadliest to hit Japan since 1995, when a magnitude-7.2 quake killed 6,433 people in the western city of Kobe.
You must be wondering why a magnitude-6.6 quake hit us this morning but not major casualties was reported, compared to the magnitude-6.8 in 2004. The reason is because that one in 2004 happened continuously. If the quake didn't stop just now and continued shaking, it's expected that the buildings here will collapse. As buildings in Japan are built to withstand earthquake, the buildings didn't collapse just now. If that quake happens in Malaysia, I guess even the Twin Towers will collapse.
This is no joke. Before this morning, I've been waiting for the day to experience an earthquake. I mean some small ones. But never did I thought that when it hit me for the first time, it hit me hard. A M6.6 quake.
all is still safe and sound after the quake
It's already more than 4 hours since the quake hit my place. There are still some little aftershock quakes that can be felt now. I'm still kinda blur and still recovering from it. You might laugh at me. I will be like that too before this. But not anymore after what I went through this morning. You'll know how it is when you actually go through it yourself.
Life is nothing. A few seconds of quake can just take you life away. Lucky me as the one I went through was not too serious and I'm still able to be here posting this entry.
UPDATED: There was another aftershock quake at 1537 (Japan Local Time) and again, we were evacuated. It was a magnitude-5.6 quake. I'm sure after this there'll be some few others aftershock quakes. Just got to keep myself alert with it.
Of all the days, they pick today to give us a BIG earthquake. I've been playing hide and seek with it since this morning. It's kinda a cat and mouse game. Just like Tom and Jerry. I hope I will be Jerry.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Weekend Cooking Continues

I guess I will be making this as a permanent entry every weekends from now onwards. The reason? Well, some people just couldn't stop posting entries on food. So, I thought why not I do the same too, right?
And secondly, I'll be able to browse through what I have cooked so far and refer to them again next time in case I run out of ideas of what to cook. That practically happens everytime I cook.
Here it goes for today's cooking.
Lunch: White rice, fried cabbage, soft tauhu, prawn tempura and hash potato.
As you should have known, I cooked porrice yesterday. That should be the first and the last time for me cooking porrice as today's rice turned out perfectly. The hash potato wasn't really visible as it was under the prawn tempura.
Calvin's personal rating: 7/10
As for dinner tonight, after taking just white rice for some time already, I changed wind and made this.
Dinner: Fried rice ala Chinese style.
The ingredients I used were chicken, sausages and mixed vegetables. That's all for today. I will have to start figuring out what to cook for tomorrow already.
Calvin's personal rating: 8/10

Japanese Samba - Baseball

Living in Japan for so long without posting an entry about Japanese samba will make you feel something is lacking, right? So in this entry, I'll introduce Japanese samba. No, not football, soccer or futsal. But it is baseball. Japanese baseball. The reason I called it Japanese samba is because baseball is the most popular sports here in Japan. Just like football in Brazil and gasing in Malaysia.
To get a real atmosphere of this game, I went to a baseball ground in my place not so long ago. It was just around 15 minutes walk from my kosen. But this is the first time I actually step into the ground for all these while I'm in Nagaoka.
Nagaoka Town Yukyuzan Baseball Ground
When I was there a few weekends ago, there was this Match between Yomiuri Giants, a popular Tokyo based team against team Goodwill. I have no idea how good both of these teams as I have never seen a full baseball match before in my whole life, let alone knowing about its rules.
The wasn't any people on the ticket booth, so I went in without burning my wallet.
where the counter had people gone?
Well actually, it was a free entrance. No tickets, no nothing. That's the reason I went to see a game which I know nothing about it; coz it's free. Do you think I'll go if the charge me even 100yen? No, I won't.
Typical Malaysian. You can't blame me.
random pics
When I was there, the game had already started long time. It was the 4th game I think. As I have already mentioned, I have no idea at all on this game. Same goes with cricket and rugby.
I just find these game boring. Sorry guys if I've offended anyone on that.
spot the ball (if you can find one)
The attendance was pretty encouraging as the ground was almost filled up. There was around 1000 plus people watching the game. Not bad for a ground in the middle of so-called kampung.
Compare that to our football stadium in Malaysia. I think we don't need to waste time thinking about that, right?
spot the ball 2 (if there's any)
If I take some effort to get to know this game, perhaps I would fall in love with this game, even more than football. But no, I don't think so. It's like waiting a dog to grow horns for something like that to happen to me.
I used dog instead of cat because the probability for a dog to grow its horns is much lower than cat. So, you can guess what's the chance I'll take up baseball.
no need to spot liao coz it's so obvious
But one thing for sure, what I know about this baseball game is that you got to hit the ball as hard as you can, throw the bat down and run to the next checkpoint. It's like 'Pukul, Baling, Lari'. Make that in short and you'll get 'Pukul Bala'.
Not a bad game to have an interest in since it could get rid of your bad luck. So get a bat today and start hitting your bala.
it's not spot the ball this time; instead it's guess the speed of the ball
As I have no idea how the point system works and how a team can gain points, I spent most of my time waiting for the home team supporters to go "yeah!!".
But I didn't follow them "yeah!!" coz I was worried that I might be sitting at the wrong place at the wrong time. You see, lets say that guy beside me is the opposing team's supporter, how will he react to my "yeah!!"?
Yeah, I might ended up in hospital. Worse still, if he's someone with a sumo size, I'll perhaps be in the ICU. If you wonder what ICU means, it actually stands for Internal Cabbage Unit. In the end, I'll get vegetable-d by him and not be able to tell you this cabbage's tale here.
By playing baseball, the position you're in while playing it can make you withstand your natural call. So, you don't have to have a break time in the middle of the game and hit the toilet. Take this as an example.
you take this position when you feel like want to pang sai
I know that was crap. But actually, the substitutes do practice their 'Pukul Bala' thing throughout the game, beside the ground. There, I notice this ang moh player. His name is Jeff Liefer, an American.
I'll tell you later on why I mentioned his name here.
some light practices while Liefer (#40) is cleaning his bat
In the middle of the game, suddenly my lucky charm sesat-ed and came to find me. One of the batter miss-hit the ball and it flew so high that it actually gone over the 50-metre-high fence in front of the spectators. It almost flew out of the ground, but it didn't.
Instead, it bounced down the steps and rolled to the back of my seat. Apa lagi, I picked it up before one battalion of people come rushing at me.
the ball, which I later got Liefer to autograph on it
I noticed that it was an official ball. Initially I came just to have a look at this game and never knew to get something like this. I later have Liefer to autograph on the ball when they was boarding the bus back.
When I checked out at the stalls selling souvenirs a printed autograph ball cost 840yen (RM28). That's just a printed one. The one I got was a match-day ball. With an autograph on it. How cool was that? No a bad day, I thought. You know what, you don't get this often!
random pics during the game
I know my friends will be regretting for not joining me for this game.
It was getting late by the time the game ended. In fact, I didn't know it had ended until the announcer started telling us goodbye. So, the blur blur me just followed them out of the ground.
game over
By the way, team Giants won the game. I think the final score was 6-5. Not so sure though. But who cares, right? I wasn't on either sides. So whichever team who wins, I'll just support them from now on.
Sounds so Chelsea, no?
team Giants celebrating their victory
Seeing the people still crowding the area outside, I went and checked out what was happening. They were actually waiting for the players to come out and board the bus. All were with their markers, papers, magazines, hat, etc hoping that they can get them autographed.
So I joined into the craze as well. The girls were shouting "Uuwahh, kakkoi!" when the players started coming out to board the bus. And as expected, all were pushing in order to get their stuff autograph. Some was even more interesting. They took bags of sake, bouquet of flowers, etc, all to be given to their beloved players.
waiting the player to come out anxiously
There I was alone, a gaijin, sesat in the middle of the craze without knowing a single of their players. But I understand. Those baseball players are just like the Beckhams (formerly) and Ronaldos to them. I'm sure most kaki bola will do the same thing if they see those players.
While standing in the middle of the crowd, I heard something which sounds familiar.
"背が高くて、いいですね。" (Wah, tall very good hor!)
At least I now got to know one of the very few good points to be tall. You don't have to jump like chimpanzees to check out what's happening in front. The same thing applies when you are passing your stuff to be autographed. Just use your long hands and you'll be the envy of everyone.
Again the theory of Perkadaran Langsung does apply this time.
Jeff Leifer from team Goodwill
It was during this time I borrowed a marked from a Japanese kid to have my ball (not my ballS) autographed by Jeff Liefer. He seems to be a nice guy compared to the other lan si's Japanese players who don't even bother to acknowledge the people there.
They just walked and buat tak tau, as if they didn't noticed the people there shouting for their names.
Who they think they are? Buta ar? If the supporters are not behind the team, they are nothing. I wonder why am I ranting here.
Beside this baseball ground, there is a swimming pool complex. But I won't be drowning myself here, unless they provide a baby pool. At least I will be able to swim along with the babies.
But I know, once I entered the tiny pool, the water will be splashed out and those pity babies will run for their life, thinking a tsunami has hit their pool.
There are also stalls being set up selling souvenirs.
I went to the stalls and check out what's in store.
Guess what I saw? I got to know that the mascot for team Giants is Giabbit - a rabbit, just like me.
No wonder I'm a giant!