November 29, 2009

The mystery of Ninja Assassin

If you like the Korean singer Rain as a macho looking handsome man. Or even as a beautiful man who set your heart aflutter. Then, Ninja Assassin is not the movie for you.

Ninja Assassin is so violent that the blood will be flying off the body count like only Wachowski brothers can do it. The Wachowskis love to be mysterious that they never give any interview anywhere. They are unlike the Coens of Fargo fame. They are here just as producers but you can see their trademark everywhere in this film.

They pushed the envelope again in special effect and this time they make ninjas, well, more ninja-like. Like the ghost they are and as potent. There are mysteries in the movie which my wife and I never really solve. Like who was feeding the character Rain is playing with information from the inside of the 9th Clan. Or why the 9th Clan cannot defeat modern weaponry if they are invincible.

Some questions alike that are best left unanswered. One thing for sure. If you are like me. Who love violent kung-fu actioner, Ninja Assassin is it. It is one of the action movie of the year which I really enjoy. I consider it as the extension of the kung-fu dojo scene which Wachowski showed in The Matrix.

Where Keanu declared "I know kung-fu"

November 26, 2009

Discretion of a boss

Every eve of Eid, be it Eidul Fitri or Eidul Adha, if it is a working day, I will get request from my staff to be let off early. I know it will seems to everyone I am a scrooge as I rarely allow this, it is something which I detest as I consider my staff will be saving up their holiday for long holidays. Sometimes, they even ask me to be let off early for New Year or whatever holiday which will allow them to reach their destination earlier than they have planned.

Again, I rarely allow this. As I rarely get any reprieve from my staff about anything, I consider these requests as merely the staff way to see what they can get away with. My staff are not the type who stays back until late. No one will knowingly volunteer for more work. They even do not completely do their own work. They are very much different from some of the friends whom I know who stay back in their office until late. We are actually watching them and just finding an excuse to get them to leave. As they love to read this blog (some of them), I just hope the message will be clear.

I always believe we can't really cheat in doing our work. Somewhere, somehow, your lackadaisical attitude will bite you back. Eidul Adha is about making sacrifice. If only one party do the sacrificing then the other just reap the benefit, we do we stand? Maybe time for reassessment has come....

As it is a long weekend either in Malaysia or USA (and with Black Friday coming), have a great one guys....

November 24, 2009

They don't make them like they used to...

I was greeted by a sour face of my business partner this morning. As everyone was busy, I didn't know the real story until it was lunch time. It was about the attitude of those girls who are currently in our office doing their attachment or more popularly known as internship with us. They were sent over by their university as a government initiative for new graduates to get some working experience before they started to work in the real world. We don't even have to pay them. They got an allowance paid for by the government. Convenience huh?

Until you hear what we have to deal with....

As they were under supervision by their university, we have to deal with a supervising professor who assigned us whom to send to our office. There were 4 changes of students who were supposed to attach with us ranging from 4 to 5 persons per batch. At long last, after delaying for nearly 3 weeks, 2 girls came to report for duty at our office. One of the girl straight away for two days off as her grandmother had just past away and she needed to attend to family matters. As they are attachments and we are actually giving them a chance to experience working life, we were not too strict and allow it.

Then within the space of 2 weeks, at least one of them would do a disappearing act with excuses ranging from family matters to no excuse at all. One day, when both of them did not turned up, we called them over the next day. Their answer was the dumbest answer any staff could ever give. Ever.

They were stuck in traffic due to some mishap on the road and as they were late, they decided to not come and they couldn't call the office as they did not have the office phone number. That really take the cake.

My business partner who had assigned them some real work was angry at her job, which has a dateline, are being left being half-done. She straight away asked them to be aware of the reason they were sent there and to really act like those who have been given responsibility.

After all that, the straw that broke the camel back for my partner was when today one of them came into her office and asked to not continue the internship at all as she find it hard to get to office everyday as she live quite a bit far from our office. She asked my partner to allow her to do this while she still receive her allowance. And to confirm with her professor that she finished her internship on time.

That was when my partner gave it to her like any good boss can. What really riled her up was when she asked her to take a bus or even a taxi, with the firm paying the fare, this girl said, she never used any public transport and she really doesn't know how to use one.

And these are the product of our local university? No wonder they say there's a brain drain in the country.

November 21, 2009

No Compromise for Mister Potato Fiesta 2009

Have you ever eaten potato chips which have been left out in the open without the can being properly closed? I have had my share of eating such things. Sometimes, it was when I was craving for some crisps and had imagine it on my mind the feeling of such crispy potato chips to invade my mouth. The disappointment of the potato chips being uneatable or even soggy can be really overwhelming sometimes. I would then go looking for a fresh can to make up for that type of disappointment.

I thought I am the only one having this problem in my household but it seems that other than us humans (my wife and I), our cats also hate potato chips which are not crispy. It shows that how much importance should be give to crispiness of potato chips. Look at Cookie face when I gave her some of these chips which have been left in the open and is quite soggy :

It is my fault for leaving the can to open the night before and I forgot to close the can properly. Usually, I will have my Mister Potato with my evening tea like this :

 Mister Potato crisps are never soggy if it has just been open. They have ensured quality all the way. Do you know that they are having a contest now?

The #1 Mister Potato Contest consist of 8 stages of games where you take on a role of humble potato peeler in the Mister Potato’s organization. You have stumbled upon a series of secret steps to climb the corporate ladder and set to be the #1 Man in the Mister Potato Empire!


The first step you’ll have to do is to register for an account. Once you’re done with that, you’re one step closer to win the following prizes;
• 1st Prize – RM5,000
• 2nd Prize – RM3,000
• 3rd Prize – RM2,000

Now that the cash prizes have got your attention, we’ll share what else you need to do to win the prizes. There will be 8 different challenges in the #1 Mister Potato Contest which will give you a brief idea on how the crispy chips of Mister Potato are made. They include plucking potatoes,


Slicing potatoes,


Chip crunchiness audio test,


…and many more! At the end of the challenge, you’ll be given a chance to upload a picture of yourself dressed up as Mister Potato! Dress to your best as this will be a very important task to win the cash prizes! Once you’re done, you’ll need to wait until 29th November where the gallery page will be open for public voting until 5th December. During this period, rally your friends and family to vote for you as you’ll need all the votes you can get to attend the grand Mister Potato Fiesta of the year!!


50 contestants with the most votes by the end of the voting period will be given a pair of invites to join the Mister Potato Fiesta 2009 where the best 10 contestants will be pitted against each other to be crowned the grand winner for the #1 Mister Potato Contest! Go to Mister Potato website to enter.

I actually have completed all the stages in the contest but when they want me to dress up like Mister Potato, I lack the facial hair. Maybe I can grow my mustache and try to enter later.

As for now, let me enjoy my crispy Mister Potato's crisps with my evening tea...

November 20, 2009

Blog posts as press statements

Remember the time when you have to chase a certain somebody all over the country to get a sound bite from him? When he wouldn't give his time of the day as he is too busy attending to his 'work'? Either the work is attending events where he or she has to cut ribbons or those work where he or she has to go and meet his or her boss or another of his or her contemporary (for the highest boss of the land). Most of these people are labelled as 'politicians' and some are 'aspiring' politicians. Chasing and being chased are just some of their job descriptions.

Nowadays, if you want some insight into the mind of a politician or what a politician has to say about certain matters, be it some irrelevant matter to his portfolio or the one which can make or break another politician career, look no further than the internet. Or specifically the politician's blog which will tell you all you need to know and then some.

It may not be the same as interviewing these politicians and catching them off-guard with some direct questions but even the mainstream media seems to use these blogs to get some news to feed the masses. Some of the politicians have even published their blog posts in the form of press release. It is easier for the media to sift these releases in order for them to make into published articles.

Like the courtrooms where lawyers now like to send in their submission by writing them than present them to the judges through their oral acrobatics, maybe politicians of the future can convince their constituents that they are good in representing them in Parliament or Congress by the ideas they present through their writings....

November 17, 2009

Would M.Nasir/Ramli Sarip be given the same treatment

I just saw Sir Bob Geldof being given a VIP welcome in the local television station. He was touring the place and was then seen having a discussion with a few of the senior management of the television station. The newscaster then said, he was there to share his ideas. He is in Malaysia to talk at the Youth Engagement Summit which was held for youth to interact with world leaders. Among the imminent persons who had given talks and answered questions among other were Geldof, Randi Zuckenberg of CNN, Biz Stone of Twitter and Malaysia's own Fernandes of AirAsia.

I did not attend this event although I wanted to as the fee is too much to pay for little old me. I actually am thankful when I didn't attend as the Twitter-feed I was reading when the event was going on showed speeches which can be read again and again in their books and other events. Some of the participants who was interviewed said they were inspired by getting to question their idol. There was this one guy who was trying to get Geldof to commit to a Band Aid type of event in Asia. He was actually considered to be rude and uncouth in his attempt to do such thing. I consider him to be brave although a tad foolish.

Who is this Geldof actually? He is a singer-songwriter and in short a rocker in the 70s. He had successfully organised a few events which are best known to raise money for Africa and one of the famous one is Band Aid where other band came and perform while they raise money for the famine in Ethiopia. It was considered a success. The current group MD of the Malaysian television station who had invited Geldof is well-known for his charity work. So, maybe that is why he invited Geldof to pick his brain.

Malaysia has its share of rockers and well-known person giving their all to charity. I am just wondering whether of them are singer-songwriters or even those who has anything to do with music to be as charitable or as inventive in trying to raise money for charity as Geldof. Here in Malaysia, among a few of the well-known musicians are M.Nasir and Ramli Sarip. I wonder how will they fare in fundraising.

November 16, 2009

Rainy days and Mondays

The Carpenter sang that when it rains and when it is a Monday, with a forlorn voice, the day would be a very sad day. But, I am just wondering, isn't that makes Monday more fun. I mean, everyone says they hate Mondays and to those who live near the suburb, having to drive into the city, it will be one long drive which will may even make you stuck in a traffic jam.

That is why I love living in the suburb and work in the suburb.

The only reason for me to be late for work on a rainy day or a Monday if I choose to pull the cover up and sleep a bit late. Just a bit....


November 14, 2009

2012 : Where old actors go to die....

It was a disaster movie which is just a recycle of all the other disaster movie. I would want to say it is the best disaster movie yet but there were others, by the same producer no less, such as Armageddon and The Day After Tomorrow. Roland Emmerich has practice a lot in destroying the world to bring us another one and boy, did he try to really make us feel the feeling of utter helplessness if these prophesies event ever come into being.


It is the end of the world in 2012 if the Mayan calendar if to be believed and to be understood as not continuing more than 21.12.2012 as meaning to mean it is the end of the world.

Jackson Curtis (Cusack) is the one who raced from one city to another and then one country to another to save his family. And he succeed. While people were kill when Los Angelese were sliding into the ocean or Hawaii become a volcanic mess and Yellowstone spewed lava instead of just hot geyser. Yes, they even destroyed the White House by throwing a ship on it. While the ship is still in the water.


Chiwetel Ejiofor is Adrian Helmsley, who is the other main character who discovered the phenomena and was the one who started the ball rolling to build ships to save mankind. As the lead scientist, he managed to save more than what the government, being the evil Oliver Platt decided to sell seats on the ships.

But the real main character was the world being destroyed and tectonic plates all over the world being shifted.

Look at the name of these actors :
John Cusack, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Amanda Peet, Oliver Platt, Thandie Newton, with Danny Glover and Woody Harrelson.

Can you remember, when was the last time they had any hit film? (except for Chiwetel whom I think will emerge as the biggest winner in acting lottery here. I mean, he is going places)

All I can say, you know that you are in for a great disaster movie, which will rely on the special effect more than the acting when you see has-been actors are cast to be sacrificial lambs, one by one, to the great mother earth (some of them do survive...)

Don't know anyone of them? Some will just go down in flames...

Thanks to Nuffnang for giving me tickets to watch the world go down in flame and how the world will looks like if it is flooded like in Noah time. I did not even notice it was two and half hour when it was finished...

Go watch it for the effect and not for the acting...

November 13, 2009

You Gotta See This video contest

Do you believe that with better vision you can improve people's lives? And some have even done it? Improving people's lives, I mean. You may have been involved in such effort and have even film it while it happens. It may even be something that you think people should know. An event or an effort by people that you know which shows what greater vision can do to your everyday life. Being someone who has been wearing a pair of eyeglasses since I was 8 years old, I myself have been considering to improve my vision a few times.

Abbotts Medical Optics Inc. (AMO) recently launched the YOU GOTTA SEE THIS Video Contest. People have submitted videos on how their improved vision helps them to box, swim and just do normal everyday chores better. There are those who even submitted music videos of such improvement.

You think you can do better? You think you have a cooler video or a better way of telling a story?

The contest is still open and they are still accepting entries. Why not visit iLASIK Video Contest and enter the contest. Show your creativity and you have a chance to win $5,000.

Here are the Prizes :
A Grand Prize of $5,000
First Prize (one in each video category) : HDTV package — a $2,500 value
Second Prize (one in each video category): The Flip UltraHDcamcorder — a $199.99 value

How does one enter the competition?

Just submit a video (after making one, of course) under one of the following category :1) “My contacts are getting in the way of my good time”
2) “My favorite sport or activity would be so much cooler with better vision”
3) “You should see life after the iLASIK® Procedure”

After you have done the submission, tell your friends and family to vote. Heck, if you do submit, tell me about it and I might vote for you (That is, if you have a cool video). And voting, like most internet based competition, is one of the key factors to winning. 

November 12, 2009

It's not what you know...

I think this quote has been used too many times in movie about lawyers or better known as legal thriller. The importance of your capability to prove that something has happened. In contrast with just knowing that something has happened. Especially if it is based on something or someone which you have not been able to bring to light. A missing evidence. Or a missing witness. Two important tools for a lawyer in a courthouse.

The whole quote goes :

"It is not what you know, it is what you can prove in court".

It was said recently in the movie Law Abiding Citizen as the prosecutor played by Jamie Foxx was outwitted by the revengeful Gerard Butler. It was a great movie which used the courtroom as the background but still couldn't beat the Edward Norton's multiple personality character who beats Richard Gere's character in Primal Fear or even A Time To Kill, either the book by Grisham or the movie with McConaughey and Bullock. Watch it all if you have not.

All these movies are more of a legal thriller than a courtroom drama. But good nonetheless.

November 11, 2009

There are some clients you wish you never ever meet

In my 10 years as a business owner, I have my share of bad clients. Although some may say bad clients are those who are bad paymasters and do not know how to settle their bill on time, as lawyers, we usually gave a very different grace period for our clients to settle their bill. They can open a file for RM1000-00 for certain type of cases and we will only bill them later. Sometimes, that is the only amount they pay until we manage to settle their files.

When I was a criminal lawyer in a small town down south, the payment may be arranged to be made at each time I did a court appearance. Each appearance, the client will pay a sum enough to cover the expenses for me to come to court. Practising criminal litigation, there are chances you might have to answer to court if your client jump bail or may not turn up that day. These are the type of clients whom you never want to deal with.

As for a corporate and a conveyancing lawyer, there are those who would like to appoint you as their personal lawyers who will act for them at every twist and turn of their business. I have had my experience to deal with these type of people who is building their company into a conglomerate through connections and experience they have gained while working with someone else.

Most of these corporate personality have very convincing ways of talking but very rare can any one of them really deliver what they claim they can deliver. I have a foreigner from the middle east who treated me like a son, an ex-investment banker who loves to count his chicken before the eggs are hatched and there were a few politicians along the way. My partner and I call these guys the million, million Ringgit club.

Thanks to them, each time we hear someone whom we suspect is a snake oil seller, we just smile and taking everything with a pinch of salt. Or more like a handful...

November 10, 2009

True Wealth Open Day

As some of you might know, I am an aspiring writer. I have managed to complete my first manuscript and it is now in the hands of my publisher, True Wealth Publishing. The great thing about this publishing house is the owner is none other than the Millionaire Coach himself, Azizi Ali. I went to his book writing seminar once and I actually throw him the idea of writing a book on property based on my experience as a lawyer. He was actually excited about it and he is the one who gave me the strength to continue on writing as he himself has written nearly 30 books on various topics.

So, this weekend, between 13th to 15th of November 2009, his publishing house is having their True Wealth Open Day where on Saturday and Sunday, there will be talks by the writers whose books have been published by the publishing house. On all three days, there will be a sale on all books that were published by them and as for me, I will be there nearly the whole of Saturday.

Do come to get great books with title such as The Millionaire in Me by Azizi Ali, The Millionaire Real Estate School For Beginners by Wendy Koh (another lawyer) and Smart Parents Brighter Kids by Zaid Mohammad.

To get more information, go to this link -

See you there!!!

November 8, 2009

Best time to read textbook is when there is no exams

I was a post-graduate student a few months ago. Where I had to cram reading books and memorising Islamic finance terms for the examinations that I have to pass to get my scroll. I am not really out of it yet. Meaning, I still have to deliver something to my university in the form of an exemption paper. I have managed to get this exemption due to the experience I have gained for the past 10 years as a lawyer. I now have to relate the course I took to my experience as a lawyer. It means that I have to show the influence or the usage of Islamic finance in being a lawyer in Malaysia. As my legal firm has been servicing Islamic banks since its inception, it is not really a stretch for me to do this.

The only problem is for me to start doing it. I have been sitting on this paper for nearly 4 months now. My last examination paper was in June 2009. I had managed to gain 2 distinction for the 12 papers that I took. Not bad for someone who hates to study. I usually like to use common sense when I study. I try to understand the concept of each Islamic finance terminology and then apply it to an everyday situation. It usually works as I seem to have the knack to convey messages quite well. It may not gain me any credence as a great student but it helps me to pass my exams.

And don't you think that the best time for you to gain knowledge is when you know that what you read is for you to know and not for some exams which you are trying to pass? Usually, when you are a kid, you will be trying to get out of reading when your parents ask you to read. When I was a kid, I had this weird exception. I learn all the lessons reserved for kids who are attending high school while I was still in primary school. I was still learning how to subtract and about the dynamics of probability but I was already learning the basic of algebra then. That was all thanks to my mother who had sent me to this math teacher who was just supposed to babysit me. As the only way for her to entertain me is through math, she gave me an old math schoolbook for me to play with.

Boy, was it fun.

When I reached the age which I am supposed to learn the same subject, I was already bored with it. It was even my downfall. I was too engrossed with mathematical problems of higher level that I neglect to revision the subjects which I was to be tested.

However, I did managed to graduate from high school although I was not the best student or those who received accolades. Being able to pass without studying is still my forte. It may not makes me the well-known one among my family. That is for my second brother to bask in as he is a doctor. Everyone will always rely on the doctor the most, who can save live, in contrast with the lawyer whose only gift is the gift of the gab...


I have always wanted to be a Ninja since I read Eric Van Lustbader's Ninja Cycle. Some of the books like The Ninja and White Ninja couldn't be more apparent but some of the sequal like The Miko and Floating City had displaced the hero by the name of Nicholas Linnear somewhere else.

Ever since Lustbader became the alter ego of the estate of Robert Ludlum, I have dropped Eric Lustbader as my author of choice.

And then, a few ninja movies about Ninja have surfaced. One of it is Ninja Assassin with the Korean superstar Rain as the Ninja. I wonder whether he will be more than what he could be in Speed Racer.

If I am a Ninja, you will find me looking like this and very, very inefficient as I wear spectacles. As I hate to poke my eyes, wearing contact lenses is out of the question :

November 6, 2009

Royal Selangor Pewter in Singapore

Isn't it embarrassing? Going to Royal Selangor Pewter in Singapore but never even know where is the one in Kuala Lumpur? Heard of it and know the story about how the second (or is it the third) generation built back the business into what it is now, leaving behind the old business model where pewter was for the baby boomers to drink their beers in. Now they even have jewellery made from pewters. You can teach old dog new tricks. There is a good lesson here. Like all the old business which is brought back to life through new ideas...

At this Royal Selangor Pewter Centre in Singapore, they have the same School of Hard Knock like the one in Kuala Lumpur. And with the name like 'Royal Selangor' while we being in a Tourism Singapore endorsed tour, just wondering, isn't we very much intertwined with each other that sometimes when our politicians are bickering about Singapore as our rival, it makes you wonder. Right?

I want to get back to writing business and legal issues. Trying to wrap up all the Singapore trip posts which I am doing as they do act as fillers when my mind blank out on business and legal issues :

The place

The raw materials

The School of Hard Knock

Auditioning for THOR!!!!




From this

To this

Mine says :





Business partners need to talk to each other

I have seen a lot of businesses go bust the whole of my 10 years being a businessperson myself. I have seen the partners of legal firm which have together for years bicker and then breaks up to form other legal firms. I have seen friends who are like me, from their day in university, had planned to open up a firm, built a legal firm business from scratch and then due to differences in opinion do not talk to each other anymore. Some survives as a legal firm but there are two camps and two bosses to please.

The problem with a legal firm, we are accountable for all our decisions personally. We are not shielded from any bad decision which might affect our bottom line or liabilities which might bankrupt us if we are not careful. We are subjected to scrutiny by the Bar Council which can suspend us from practice if they even hear a whiff of scandal regarding the management of monies by any legal firm.

As lawyers are said to be a lucrative business and we safekeep a lot of people's money, it is a very regulated business. Imagine if your hard-earned money is being managed by bickering lawyers who have the right to sign out from the bank nearly all of the money. Scary isn't it? Especially if they hold a lot of those monies called the stakeholder money which developer entrusted them to safeguard until the time is to be returned back to the developer.

That is why in a legal firm, the best word to describe the relationship between partners are 'Transparency'. Knowing each other really well. The partner's favourites; his hobby; his extra-curriculum activity; his life and even his hang-out area. And the best way to know this is to talk to each other. Even of unrelated matter.

Oh, and if you do come to my office, talking to each other is a daily affair for me and my partner. We have a few rituals which we follow to get in touch with each other especially if may affect how we handle situations at the office....

November 4, 2009

MINT Museum of Toys

This place is one of the place which I enjoyed being in for the nostalgia it brings. The old toys I played when I was young and the chance meeting with the owner. He even showed me the spacecraft which Luke Skywalker use to clow up Deathstar which stands at 6 feet although it was not put together yet. My wife and I took so many pictures as we can recall a lot of the cartoons that we love when we were young. The place only holds toys up to 1990s. After that most of it can still be found (but there was a full size Darth Maul replica)

The only thing that I can't understand is the not playing with the toy part. What are toys for if not to be played with? Broken into pieces and thrown at walls. Didn't Toy Story had taught us all this? Maybe not as some of the toys can be downpayment for a car. That is if it is in mint condition perfectly preserve in its box. The MINT in the name of the museum stands for Moment of Imagination and Nostalgia with Toys. The place is an architectural wonder and is a cafe, a restaurant and a wine bar. There was a birthday party about to take place in one of the floor when we were there. It was for a kid. Who can never touch the toys...

The word that describe the owner and the curator who took us around is Passion. I cannot for the life of me not touch any of the toys. They also know a whole lot of facts which if you know the answers to all the questions the cutator throws at you, let him answer it. He hates the fact other knows the same fact. When I answered why the old Batman is fat (Adam West anyone) he was genuinely irritated. But, maybe I was disturbing his flow...

With the owner and his wife

That shows a price of nearly S$12,500-00

The curator briefing us on how to make money from NOT playing with toys

Some of the posters there

Various Astro Boy

Dolls are toys too...

The Beatles

The pretender : The Monkey

Felix The Cat

The bar on the rooftop has a lot of cool signs

When I was a kid, all these matchbox cars would have been smashed against walls

 Hayata becomes Ultraman...

A Merry-Go-Round ride

Remote control peacock?

Gollywogs which is so not PC

Betty Boop


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