Sunday, May 25, 2008

Silly Notices

I'm sure many of you who take the NEL have seen this notice at the escalators in the stations. Everytime I see them, I can't help but snigger coz I think the notice does make some silly implications (OK, I know my implications are statistically wrong, but hey... as long as I'm happy...)

Well, if 8 out of 10 injuries are cause by improper use of the escalators... does it mean that 2 out of 10 are caused by PROPER use of the escalators?!! That's not very assurng.

The next one is a bit sillier.

If 5 out of 10 injuries are by passengers not holding on to the handrails... doesn't it mean that 5 out of 10 injuries are also caused by passengers HOLDING on to the handrails?!! Heh. So it doesn't really make a difference whether I hold on to the handrails or not, right?

So, in the end, we are told that in order to help, we should (1) ask the elderly to old the handrails. I wonder why, since statistically, the possibility of injuring yourself is the same whether I hold on to the handrails or not. and (2) we should ask the elderly to use the lifts! lolz. So next time, whenever we see an elderly attempting to use the escalator, we should go up to him/her and tell him/her that he is not allowed to use the escalator. Might as well ban them from the escalators right? lolz.

OKOK, I know I'm just making silly implications. What to do? Nothing else to do when taking the trains mah. So think of stupid things lor. :-)

Indiana Jones & The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

I've been itching to catch this show since it opened on Thursday. Yep, I'm not one to wait. So once, my crazy week was over, I couldn't wait to pop into a cinema today to catch IJATKCS. Lolz. That's quite a mouthful. IJATKCS is a sequel 20 years in the making. Has it been worth the wait?

Storywise, I think it's pretty much in the similar vein as the early Indiana Jones movies. Two weeks ago, I made an effort to rewatch the original movies to remind myself of them. As I sat through the movie today, I think Spielberg has remained quite true to the original flavour of the IJ movies. So story-wise, time has been kind to the franchise.

Moving on to the actors.... heh... I must admit that as much as I was impressed with Harrison Ford doing many of the action sequences, I couldn't help thinking...boy, is he old. lolz. It's been 20 years and I think it shows. He's no less entertaining. But at times, I felt it was a bit of a misfit. Shia Labeouf does a pretty decent job as Indiana's son. Yeah, we all know he is probably being groomed to take over the Indiana Jones franchise and although he doesn't really do much in this movie, I think the scenes he were involved in were done pretty well. The other main actor in this movie is Cate Blanchett as the evil russian scientist. I felt she was kinda corny. Her accent really sounded weird but oh well, I didn't go to this movie expecting academy-award winning performances.

I want to say a little about the special effects. I have to say that there were a few scenes which really blew me away. The first one was the atomic bomb mushroom cloud. Phew. It was awesome and scary. The other happens near the end. I won't say more as I don't want to spoil the ending to anyone who is reading this review. But I was really glued to my seat when the final mega-effect scene unfolded.

On the whole, IJATKCS is a fun show. Don't expect deep plots. Just go expecting a roller coaster ride. I still enjoy the clue-solving moments. I like to think of IJATKCS as a big budget version of the National Treasure series. Watch it. I don't think you'll be disappointed.

A Crazy Week

Phew. The last week and a half has been quite a ride. It's two weeks before the school holidays and all the schools going on tour with us have asked for tour briefings during the part one and a half weeks. In the last week alone, I've had to conduct 5 briefings in 5 days. That has been quite a challenge. Briefings entail preparing briefing notes, briefing kits, and also the powerpoint for the actual presentation. Being the perfectionist that I am, this has meant working right up to the last minute, trying to perfect the presentation. It has been very very challenging and given that I am quite a slacker... heh.. (especially since I stopped working full-time), it has required tremendous willpower to temporarily restrain myself from my usual worldly pursuits! Yep.. NO MOVIES in the last 10 days! Yep... that's TEN days without visiting the celluloid chambers! Believe me, that took alot of effort on my part. heh.

Anyway, I've been really lucky to have some part-time help in office to prepare the stuff for my briefings. Having gone through the past 7 briefings (it was 5 in 5 days and 7 in 10 days), I am quite proud to say that I think I've done reasonably well. I wanted to do more than the usual boring tour briefing and I think I've improved on my presentation through the last 7 briefings. It's quite satisfying to know that I have managed to do some different things and that I have received pretty good feedback from the teachers. The other thing that has been exciting for me is the opportunity to address students during the briefings. It's been almost 20 months since I left teaching and I really do miss interacting with students in a classroom-like environment. I think conducting briefings has been as close as I could get for now to a classroom environment. Yeah, I do wonder if I should return to teaching again. Perhaps if the time and opportunity is right...

Well, one more week and I'll be off to Fukuoka for almost 2 weeks. The week ahead is gonna be real busy as I finalize the details of the tours I have been organizing for some schools. Then it's off to Kyushu with my first of three tour groups. I'm trying to think how to make my tours different from the normal tours. Gonna definitely try to think out of the box as I plan to lead the three tours.

The next three weeks should be challenging... and very tiring! Sigh, less slacking for me...

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

A Nostalgic Ride

Wow... Boarded bus 93 outside Queensway Shopping Centre and realised it was a NON-Aircon bus! Haven't taken one in a long time.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

A great start to Summer Blockbuster season!

Last Friday was a very satisfying day. Watched two movies and ended up being thoroughly satisfied with BOTH movies. It seems that the Summer Blockbuster season has officially started!


IRON MAN is an excellent movie. The trailers were pretty interesting and I was a little afraid that expectations would be too high and the movie would be a disappointment. I am glad to say that I was not disappointed.

Robert Downey Junior totally fits the role of Tony Stark/Iron Man. He not only seems to look the part, he also plays the role convincingly well. There is a certain playfulness and innocence with the way he explores his new found armour and it's a joy to see him flying through the air. The other roles are played quite well too. Gwyneth Paltrow is also a pretty fun Pepper Potts. She doesn't try to overact and plays her role in an understated yet convincing manner.

The story is fairly straightforward. There weren't many surprises but the story did move along briskly and at least there weren't too many silly plotholes or ridiculous storylines.

But who am I kidding. The real star of the show is the armour and special effects. This is a techie's dream-come-true. From the cool 3D computer interface effects to all the little hydraulic/mechanical parts of the armour, every moment was a moment in techie heaven.

Iron Man was a throughly enjoyable show. In the list of superhero movies, I would say it would be second to Spiderman 2, but definitely beats Spider 1, Spidey 3, Hulk, Superman and the newer, darker Batman. It was a fun ride. Don't hesitate. Watch it now.


I wasn't expecting anything much from this movie. I didn't watch the first one so I didn't know what the story was about. But since I was in the mood for something stupid, I decided to go for it. I know it's M18, so my apologies to the under-18s, but if you are of the required age... this show is hilarious and certainly worth watching.

This show is pretty no-holds barred. H&K really does make fun or anything and everything. But I think the one thing that raises it above crass humour is that it makes fun of all things American. Hollywood usually makes fun of many racial stereotypes, but in this movie, the minorities (ie. Korean and Indian) make fun of American stereotypes. It's kinda refreshing.

Harold & Kumar is good fun. But it might not be everyone's cup of tea coz there is lots of talk of weed and sexual humour.