Monday, August 30, 2010

Izzudin Ibrahim 050676 - 290810

Yesterday, a friend i know in lower secondary school passed on after fighting cancer for a few years.

Rest In Peace Izzudin. I only know you for three years (89-91) and lost touch with you for the past 19 years until i found you in Facebook again. Those solid three years i knew you i will remember until the day i passed on. Most memorable was the interview we went with 7 others for RMC.
Din in the foreground (wearing polo-t with number 9). Photo taken from his Facebook.

Project 365 : Day 95 of 365

It is a day early for Merdeka which fall on 31st August. I decided to post this photo taken by my sister in law with her immaculate framing and composition skills. She took this photo on the lowest end dSLR with kit lens as mine was out with me on site when she took the photo. The camera wasn't even hers. Her photos taken when she was in Nepal was awe-inspiring...taken using on a PnS with 1.5inch screen. I've spoken enough on Merdeka. There is nothing much to say, except i am very very proud that Ryan, my son, are able to sing Negaraku.
Tools : D40x+18-55VR. Photo Credit to Anna Har.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Project 365 : Day 94 of 365

Look, the signboard should really be taken off. It's obscene. Pop My Berry? What the hell are they thinking? Wait, or what was I thinking? :P Anyway, this is good advertisement though the artwork sucks. But it got me to surf and find out what the hell they were promoting. I guess we human are just naturally curious.
Tools: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2. iAuto.

Project 365 : Day 93 of 365

Creme Caramel
Soft, Sweet, Milky, Smooth and Melts in Mouth. That is what life should be. Thank You wifey for the wonderful dessert and of course, dinner.
Tools: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2. iAuto

Friday, August 27, 2010

Project 365 : Day 92 of 365

Today a bit tired. It's an off day yes. But i am tired. Holiday or not, there is always the obligation that must be done for work and at home. I saw this scarecrow being put up in the middle of a shopping complex. Supposedly to potray a kampung scene. Look, the thing is, in many paddy field, they don't use scarecrows anymore. The crows are not scared. But i wish i am a scarecrow sometimes. They never grew tired. They just stand there doing their job. No question ask. No demand demanded.
Tools: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2. iAuto.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Project 365 : Day 91 of 365

I've passed the 90 days or the magical quarter in this Project365. Instead of blowing my trumpet or horn, can i just wind up the siren? Thank you all for the support given so far!
Tools: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2. iAuto.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Project 365 : Day 90 of 365

I lost my favorite earplug to the drain today. I should know better not to remove the chain link that hold the box and try to lock it to my safety vest zipper. It went right straight down without even bouncing on any edge of the hole. Just went through. Just like that. Have any of you lost anything to the drain? Or the toilet hole?
Tools: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2. Auto mode.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Project 365 : Day 89 of 365

Old and New
Noticed the old truck on the left? It looked like a sub 1-tonne truck. Good running condition and very cute looking. Right next to the truck is two newer generation cars which towers over this classic both in price and technology. However, nothing beats good maintainence. Just like human, just because you are young, doesn't meant you are disease free. Some older folks are even healthier compared to some people half their age. So, live healthily and may some of us run as smooth as the old truck above in years to come!
Tools: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2. iAuto mode B/W.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Project 365 : Day 88 of 365

They say when human died, they leave behind their name. When tiger dies, they leave behind their stripes. I was having a conversation with a colleague and the topic drifted to how certain people we know might had change for the better. I told him that a tiger don't lose it's stripes. Even if they are extinct, they will still be known for it's stripes. I am not sure what my point is today, short of saying anything that is not nice, as they say, when one has nothing good to say, don't say it.
Tools: iPhone 3Gs

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Wifey 12KM Run

12km in 75Minutes. TTDI Park - Pencala Link - Hartamas - Back to TTDI.

Along the way, some unpleasant thing happened. I hope these kids will grow up and be more matured and realised that we are all just visitors in this world and life. Our politicians need to work way harder to realise the spirit of 1Malaysia. 53years of Independence and we still have kids like these. (Postnotes : I forgot, i happen to know a 38 years old that is also an inbred-retarded racist)
Anyway, it was a good run. Wifey clocked 61mins for her 10km. the last 2km was a slow and steady warm down which i think she deserves.

1 more month to the Newton 25km run and i guess training will pick up it's pace.

We've also decided to spend a bit and retire the Nike+ system and got ourselves a pair of Polar RS300X SD from RunnerzCircle. Heartrate and footpod all in. For best price, visit RunnerzCircle and ask for my friend Frank Chong. It is a one-man show shop and i am all for the support of people that is hard working and earning a honest living. :)
We got it in bright orange, no less.

Today's run was a good one. Not only i felt alright, i know my heart rate was just hovering at 110bpm at all time. I wasn't even tired and from the pace i was doing, i know i would be doing a 5:00 and kautim the 12km in an hour.

But that wasn't the intention, as i am still ensuring my iron level stabilise and continue to increase. But like any arrogant sportsperson thinking they are superman, i was very tempted to push it further. Have to control.

Wifey decided to do a 42km next year. I am proud that she wants to take this path. I am even happier that she is committed to this and the best i could do is to train with her and keep moving forward with her.

Way to go Wifey! Next weekend we do 15km?

Project 365 : Day 87 of 365

Keep Moving Forward
A friend spoke to me separately and asked how are certain things happening and if i still cared about it. To be frank, i no longer give two hoot about it because of how it has become. Just like Politics, people are in there for their own benefits, seldom the other people they perceived to be fighting for. And just like in any societies too, the same applies. Best is that the people with common interest stay together and just do what they want - forming any sort of "alliance" will only make things sour when people start fighting for power. Enough that these are kept in the office. On Moving forward too, which is my buddy, Shazly's favourite qoute (and his blog title), i am submitting at least 34 photos i've taken since i got my dSLR in April 2009. They are all going into the company's just launched photography contest and it was interesting for myself as i see just how i evolved over the past 16 months with a Nikon D90. My photo tweaking skills, however, still below average, so most photos relies on composition and "telling a story". At this point of time, i am a "man with a camera", not a "photographer". Best i stick to my day job for now.
Tools: Nikon D90+18-55VR. ISO200. F21. 1/30. Blur motion achieved by "zooming in" as i press shutter, no post processing involved for the "motion-like" effect.

Haircut and A Shave

There is something about haircut that always make me feel good.

I used to remember the days my late granpa brought me from Gombak to Jalan Dang Wangi on the No.40 BMW - Bas Mini Wilayah. I used to have my haircut behind a furniture shop with just one small hand mirror and one barber chair. There was no aircond and all you see and hear was the traffic that runs through the small alley to what is now known as Heritage Row.

Gramps would usually exchange notes and gossips with the (late) uncle as well, with penchant for spitting every 5minutes. Back then, the "Jangan Meludah" or "No Spitting" signages are found at all establishments in town.

I was cutting my hair today at the barber near home. Somewhere my son, Ryan has now starting to grown used to.

As i was sitting there having my hair cut and styled to the only way they know, memories of my growing up years and haircut comes flushing through.

As i was observing via the back mirror to check for any bald spots forming, i recalled how my mum brought me to a barber along Jalan Genting Klang using the Len Seng 172 or 174 bus. The row of prewar building that used to be a small town has the best ever Kentucky outlet (in fact, 27 years ago, it was the only one within 20km radius with the next one in Jalan Ipoh)

Kedai Gunting Rambut Kwang Bing used to be where a hardware store is at, in front of the Confucious temple next to that KFC. This is where i got my (typical chinese boy) haircut otherwise known as coconut hair style. The side and back are trimmed and shaven closed about 2 inches up and it resembled as if they placed a coconut shell over and cut whatever not covered.

I then grew up and was allowed to decide what hairstyle i want - for 3 years, then i went to RMC
and had the only hairstyle allowed in the institution - GI. It wasn't until a year later when the "Street Fighter" game was a hype and in came the "Flat Top". That was the hairstyle to have plus it give the soldier boy a more menacing look (or so we think).

After RMC, rebellion came in and i started to have hair long enough to reach my shoulder. For that full two years i had my hair styled and colored to maximum beng-ness (some say Jinjang-Joe). It was also the longest period i had away from the barber.

After graduating and having to find a job, i decided to cut my hair, but left a fringe long enough it make me looked like a wannabe gay-boy - dyed in light brown, no less.

As i grow older and became more subtle, i realised that i will just look like myself clean cut.

For the longest time, i've had short clipped uncolored hair that you all see today.

As the barber slapped shaving cream and removed the sparse facial hair i have, memories of how i went from coconut to Elvis cow-lick, GI and Flat-top, Tarzan like shoulder hair to maximum beng-ness and finally to what i am today. It is a wonder how such simple joy as visiting the barber and having a 5 minutes shave brought back almost 30 years of memories of the hairy kind.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Project 365 : Day 86 of 365

Bridging Great Divide
School Headmaster/headmistress uttering racist statements. Teachers segregating students since primary school. Parents teaching children not to mix with others not of same color, religion and creed. Our country dream of one unified real Malaysian race is nothing more than an elusive dream. My friends whom are going to be parents, are parents and plan to be parents, please please please do not teach your kids about the differences between me, you and you.
Tools: D90+18-55VR.ISO200. F4. 1/640.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Project 365 : Day 85 of 365

Still In Service
Saw this rather interesting use of an old door in Ipoh yesterday. They demolished an old building and used the door as, well, a door. There is no story to tell today as this entry is purely about this door, still in service, even after it knows it will be discarded once the project completes.
Tools: D90+18-55VR. ISO400. F5.6. 1/640

Nasi Kandar Week : Confession Of An Addict - Part Duex

Mixed review on nasi kandar Line Clear. I guess the stigma of the place being dirty eatery and some with bad experience only add more color (and toilet visits) when food from Line Clear was eaten.

I remember back during my first experience, after consuming Line Clear, i had my system cleared as well. It will only happen ONCE. Meaning it is not an occurring issue after consuming it (i.e. food poisoning).

Food hygiene and preparation is subjective. Some home cooked food is not as clean as you think they could be too. Some expensive restaurants are known to pick up food dropped on the floor and serve it back for the customers. My take is that one should be more worried if the food preparation was hidden behind closed door.

Anyhow, my Nasi Kandar adventure continued the next day when i landed in Ipoh for lunch with an ex-colleague and a family friend.

Some of you might recall my silliness when i drove all the way to Tanjung Rambutan in search for the best Nasi Kandar in the state of Perak. It was only after careful reading that i realised that the shop is in old town, in front of the former bus station to Tanjung Rambutan; and not at the bus station in Tanjung Rambutan (which by the way, is none existence).

The shop is not hard to find. It is situated near the front portion of the old town if you are coming from the former Jalan Gopeng or the now renamed Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah. Landmark would be the Ipoh Police Station on your right and passing an Esso station on your left. You turn into Jalan Yang Kalsom.

Nasi Ganja, or the proper shop name is Perniagaan Nasi Kandar Ayam Merah. However, you will not find the signboard anywhere. This nasi kandar is so 1Malaysia it operates in a Chinese Kopitiam called Kedai Kopi Yong Suan!

And the Nasi Kandar is so staple here that the kopitiam serves nothing but drinks and steam buns. Don't look for your usual Ipoh mali food here.

Now, compared to Line Clear, the food preparation/serving of Nasi Ganja might leave you nauseated. Bare hands in plastic gloves are used to take your chicken, move your fish and scoop the "ganja" onto your plate. Imagine you got your hand smeared in (lets say) engine oil and you tried to rub it away. Now imagine you rubbing it on the plate where you will eat.

But let me tell you and don't lose your appetite as yet...the food is worth the "smearing" and "taruking" it was given.

Then, curry of many varieties are poured over the rice and voila, lunch is served.
There was no crowd yesterday due to the fasting month. But somehow the whole place looked uber busy. Rice were packed non-stop, drinks were made non-stop as well. Most were placed in black plastic bags. Then, i noticed that this place is serving as a "drive through" as well. Customers literally drives through, stick their hands out, take the packed food and drinks, pay and drive away.
Well, it's fasting month. I leave you to your own conclusion. I am not here to judge, but as Joyce mentioned, it was the most entertaining lunch she had at this place, ever!

As usual, i took many photos before actually sinking my mouth into the food. Unlike Line Clear, this one got to be enjoyed with all my five fingers. After happy with my photos, i washed my hands and started mashing the food between my fingers.

If there was taste buds on my fingertips, it would had been wet with saliva.

Nasi Ganja has it's own "oomph" The key to this is the spicy curry and the secret "ganja" which was a secret blended spices which they preparer smear on the side of your plate. Seriously.
The chicken was fried to bone crunchiness goodness. I left nothing on the plate and literally licked the plate clean. The squid which i took was nicely done and not overcooked.

And i tried very subjectively to judge this plate of Nasi Kandar...not helping as the Line Clear night before still lingers in my mouth.

Having said that, this is a keeper. Again, licking the plate clean should be proof enough of the tummy-worthiness.
I will drop by Ipoh again, when i go up north. :)

Nasi Kandar Week : Confession Of An Addict

I was in Penang. It is not the Pearl of the Orient. It is known to me as Place Of Makan. Since small, I've always been brought to Gurney Drive by my parents whenever we go to Penang. Dad was formerly working part time as a account clerk with the race course. Penang is huge for this.

I remember a lot of places for good food, but when put me there alone, i am as lost as anything.

Thank goodness for GPS.

The two days i was in Penang, i tried to savour selectively what i wanted to eat. So, in goes Penang Lam Mee - which was a-ok compared to the KL version. Then the Curry Laksa - but i prefer the Nyonya type which is thick and milky. I skipped Gurney, as it has officially lost it's charms, and only tourists goes there. The best of Penang, i believe, is to eat at where the local eat.

"so how? Seafood Porridge at Bayan Lepas or Line Clear?", I asked wifey over the phone.

"You are asking the obvious, you can have seafood porridge anywhere but there is ONLY one Line Clear", she said and i could almost see her roll her eyes through the phone.

So, at 8pm, myself and an ex-colleague helping out with a site work went to Georgetown hunting for Line Clear.

I've been only once to this place. Back when i was still playing Rugby and it was introduced to us by the then Manager (OP Nordin Manan). Back then - i think about 7 years ago, minimum, the place was a backlane. Dark with rats and cockroaches running about. You eat at a long table and share spot with strangers - all sweaty and sticky. But no one cared, as the whole purpose is to savour those Nasi Kandar that has stayed true since 1930.

And by the way, there is ONLY one Line Clear. You have many Kayu Nasi Kandar (waaaayyy overrated and overly priced) and you have many Kluang Station (lost count ain't it?) but there is ONLY one Line Clear. Are we clear of that?

OK. No point for me to show a map where this place is. Best i describe it.

Drive along Jelutong Highway towards Georgetown. Go straight past 3 traffic light until the last one before Weld Quay/Ferry terminal (Pengkalan Weld). Turn left and you are on Lebuh Chulia. Go until the end of the road, passing all and everything on your left and right. Don't be overly tempted to stop midway as you see a lot of chinese hawkers peddling their food by the road side. Go straight, don't be influenced, save the tummy for the real thing.

Now, at the end of the road, it will either turn left, or right. landmark at this spot is Odean Cinema. If you turn right, which you are NOT supposed to, you will head towards Cititel and pass by Soho Free House and towards the junction of Slippery Senorita. I repeat, This is not the place. Avoid turning right at all cost. You are that near already.

OK, at the T-Junction (which is fork-like), turn left. You are now on Penang Road. Immediately after turning right, 10m from the junction, LOOK LEFT. Line Clear is right at the small alley on your left. You will miss it if you don't look.

If you can't find any parking, don't fret. Turn left at the very first junction you see (Lebuh Campbell) and look for parking.

Park further, i promise you this will be worth it (the food i meant).

Myself and the ex-colleague parked almost 1km away and made our way to the alley.
I was already salivating.

As i walked into the alley, it was unlike how i last visited. The food was stacked on the right hand side of the alley. The chicken overflowing and i saw Briyani rice.

I immediately asked for Briyani as i continued to swallow my saliva.

"Kuah campur, banjir", i said smiling.

Hot damn it...the ladle went into every single curry i could imagine, each time flicking about a spoonful of gravy onto the hot briyani. The chicken breast was huge (ok, no pun intended) and it looked like almost quarter of a chicken. I had long bean as the vegetable, but that is NOT the highlight.

The place, at 9pm, was almost empty. I supposed the Muslims are performing the Terawih and only a handful of Penang Kia was seen eating, each with a hearty helping of heart stopping Nasi Kandar.

I sat down and admired the food served infront of me.

My fingers was trembling as i reached out for my camera. This plate served infront of me is like having some magical effect on me. I tried hard to not get overly excited...but i went on to snap like maybe 10 photos.
And one with my iPhone, which i sent to wifey immediately and then uploaded into Facebook.

"It looked F***king good. I hate you". Wifey sms-ed.

I was contemplating of eating with hands, but i want to keep my hand clean in case i want to take more photo...or to irritate wifey more.
I took the utensil. Sinked it into the briyani laden with gravy.


I took a full spoonful and sank my teeth into the food.

Instantly, i was brought back to circa 7 years ago. My taste bud was flooded with emotion. The mixture of rice, spices and gravy triggered an emotion i could not describe in words.

It was that good.

That freaking plate of rice, vegetable, gravy and chicken was eaten slowly, each spoonful was fully savoured. Each spoonful of bloody lip smacking tummy filling saliva dripping briyani triggered more comments from the photo i uploaded into Facebook.

If this is my life sentence and i have a choice of my last meal. This will be it.

I want no other than a plate of Line Clear.

And i felt all the sins i've committed eating the sub-standard Kayu Nasi Kandar slowly eating into me - punishing me, telling me why i've allowed myself to eat those Kayu rubbish.

And this is my confession - Line Clear is the best ever food Penang could deliver. No amount of Char Kuey Teow, Oh-chien, Lam Mee, Assam Laksa can give you this satisfaction like how Line Clear does.

I will be in Penang again in September. Period.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Project 365 : Day 84 of 365

7th Lunar Month
To the Malaysian Chinese, it is the ghost month. This is when the gate of hell is opened for a full 14 days for all soul to roam the streets. Many operas are set up to "entertain" the souls. Many offers food on the roadside for them. For the superstitious, this is not the month to go out at night. For the believers, it is one way of showing compassion to those that has left the world without family. For me, being brought up in a colorful "modified" malaysian hokkien chinese tradition, i have to adhere to certain rules. They say when you hear dogs barking during this month at midnight, there are "visitors" roaming around. This much contradicts to the Muslim that is observing Ramadhan, where the devils and evil are all locked up. Well, at the very least, can blame these lost chinese soul that influence those that did not fast ;-)
Tools: D90+18-55VR. ISO3200. F8. 1/20

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Project 365 : Day 83 of 365

An ex-colleague i was working with today asked me one pertinent question when i told him i've not went to a temple and pray for a long time. He thought i was a Christian. Well, i married a Catholic girl but that did not make me any more Christian than the next person that goes to church. To me, religion is just religion. It all teaches good. So, regardless of what religion you, you and you believes in, for as long as we are all at ease with our action and are ready to face our own creator when the day comes, that is the most important. Going to the church every Saturday or Sunday, praying in the temple every other day, going through the ritual 5-times a day doesn't make us any closer to God if our intention of executing the prayer are not sincere. Many a times, we all only remember God when we need help. It is nice to remember Mr. Big Boss all the time too, sometimes. :)
Tools: D90+18-55VR. ISO3200. F5. 1/25 Monochrome.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Project 365 : Day 82 of 365

Climbing Up.
How fast and far can one go? In life and at work? One must remember, the higher one go, the longer the distance they will fall. Sometimes it is good to be at the bottom of the stairs and sometimes it is good to be at the top too. Life is about choices and life is about taking chances. I took the chance when i went up this stairs and came safely down. Now, should i take another chance climbing something different too?
Tools: D90+351.8. ISO200. F9. 1/250

Monday, August 16, 2010

Project 365 : Day 81 of 365

If The Shoe Fits
How time flies. Ryan went from 3.3kg at 30cm tall to a hefty 16kg at 1m tall in about 4 years. Soon, he will be drying his sports shoes or soccer/rugby boots and will grow taller than me. A friend today told me that no matter how much a company is willing to pay you to do the work or have a career, it is nothing if the family is not there. I agree. Another friend mentioned that in life, we often make decision over which decision we want to make, sometimes, shutting doors to another opportunity or opportunities. I say if the shoe fits, we should always venture other possibilities.
Tools:D90+55-200VR. ISO200. F9. 1/250

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Project 365 : Day 80 of 365

Blessed Food
Wifey has been on a cooking spree. Not of the traditional type of food, but more of those that requires baking and such. Today's treat is Tuna Flan. I love tuna. It is one of the cheapest source of (varieties) protien other than having eggs (all 30 of them). I welcome varieties and wifey has been suprising me with loads of different things. I had Shepard's Pie last Friday after commenting that i've not eaten our "paktor" food for a long time (Shepard's pie from Secret Recipe?) This is now Ramadhan month. Muslim brothers and sisters are fasting. Needless to say, i am a bit concious to eat when i am around them too. It is not about being sensitive or anything, but more of being respectful. Glad that most of my fasting friends has never had issue of seeing other drink or eat. So, finish up the food in front of you. Practice moderation. Don't be wasteful. Food are given and should be finished.
Tools: D90+18-55VR. ISO3200. F9. 1/20.

10km Easy Run with Wifey

My iron level is on it's way back up again. I can feel it in my blood. Last week, i ran 15km without the heart threatening to jump out of my body (blood iron deficiency, supply can't cope with muscle oxygen demand).

Today, i brought wifey to what i call a "flat" route. She told me not to let her run some hilly route and the only hilly route i know off is of Kiara. So, for good luck and in case she say i bully her, i brought her to Hartamas.

Plan was to run from Petronas Hartamas towards Maltrade via National Archive/Income Tax Dept. I reckon it will be a good 10km, so around there.

So, we started the run at about 6pm. With a lot of people fasting and concentrating of buying food at the Ramadhan Bazaar, the road was pretty empty. Plus, it rained earlier and it was a cool nice temperature.

We took the inner road towards Plaza Damas, effectively making us climb one small incline. Then, it was another shorter climb infront of Damas before rolling downhill towards Segambut. Then it was a short and sharp run up KL Mosque, before turning off at National Archive and yet, one more climb. Ran around the government block before a nice slope and turning right towards Maltrade.

At Maltrade, there is two smaller climb, which i struggled last week. This week, it did not bother me a single bit and seriously, i thought it was a flat.

Up towards the new shopping place and turning back towards Hartamas, with one big climb up towards Damas again.

I got scolded twice by wifey for bluffing her with "flat". I told her, after this, everything else will be pretty flat.

Maybe i should bring her to the morning run routine i used to do up Bukit Damansara...that, i would not flat. :D

Whatever it is, 10km in 1:20 and 7,800 steps later...we headed home with wifey begging for this route again next week.

Told you Pain is Pleasure.

Project 365 : Day 79 of 365

Ryan is growing up to be the hero brother that we expected him to be. Here, he is seen protecting his sister as i kept asking her to smile for the camera. This actually ties back to something that happened recently and all i want to say is that many times, we choose to see and believe what we want. However, others can see the danger and the hazard should someone go ahead with their plans. We sometimes have to be strict, but the intention is really to be protective.
Tools: D90+55-200VR. ISO200. F8. 1/80.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Project 365 : Day 78 of 365

The Kembara Mahkota took a new twist when the Sultan of Johor decided to drive the train instead of riding HRH's Harley with Tiger stripes. I was actually suprised KTM did not paint ONE train with Tiger stripes. That would be damn cool ain't it? Instead, this train only has the Tiger "scribbled", Royally.
Tools: D90+15-55VR. ISO400. F9. 1/13

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Project 365 : Day 77 of 365

Coco Powder
Wifey is making brownies as i am updating this. Home smelt like a chocolate factory. My camera is using the 501.8 lense again and i love the bokeh. My photography is like not improving much and i need a muse. Maybe i just need time to take photos. I refrain from just taking any photo for the sake of taking any photos. Prove to be hard with time being a factor. So, essentially, instead of a "life is like a box of chocolate", this entry is so powdery, it hold nothing, but a "photo like a jar of coco powder". This could be the lowest point, ever where this project is concerned.
Tools: D90+501.8. ISO800. F1.8. 1/50

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Project 365 : Day 76 of 365

This photo technically does not qualify to be today's photo as it was taken close to 6 months ago. I had wanted to post this before as my "through my eyes" edition, but never got around doing it. Today, i want to talk about support. At work, in particular. Today was a sad day. One of my friend at work was removed from a project he was doing. Really, many times it is not anyone's fault. I just believe circumstances and design on what happened, plus the build up sort of caused the whole thing to go sour. I have no direct linking to what he does and all i could do is to lend some support and make light of the moment. It's time for me to go home now, as my biggest supporter is waiting at home, with a bad tummy.
Tools:D90+501.8. ISO200. F3.2. 1/200

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Project 365 : Day 75 of 365

Another wild flower seen on site. This time is in Penang. Again, i am very excited when i see wild flowers growing wild. It is like a message to tell us that despite all adversity and hardship, there is and will be hope, if you choose to find it. I am feeling very inspired to work today. almost 18hours non-stop. My eyes is making peekaboo with me now, but there is still glitters...Boss, if you are reading this, you know what i am saying. ;)
Tools: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2. Auto Intelligence.

Project 365 : Day 73 of 365

Fruit of Your Labor
I saw this when i was at site yesterday (meant for yesterday's entry) and i am intrigue by what fruits this is actually. They are definately edible. I noticed that a lot of people are working very hard in their daily life. I had a conversation with a close buddy about this and he was commenting how hard i was working and i so deserve a big raise/promotion. For me, a lot of things are subjective. One got to love what they are doing and enjoy it thoroughly. I can say that i fall into that class. I told him that a lot of people, like him, are working hard too. I can see my colleagues in the office working doubly hard, if not tripling their effort. Team work is very important and i see challenges and obstruction as an opportunity to move forward. The team is under tremendous pressure now to deliver, just like how the expectation on the edible fruits is like as you see them getting ripe, and expecting how it would actually taste.
Tools: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2. Intelligent Auto.

No update for Project365

Hit a snag with the Project. Limited internet and can't upload the photo. To have double posting tomorrow night.

Sorry to dissapoint.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Sunday, August 08, 2010

15km Reality Check Run

Met up with Jabir this morning at 6am for a run. I was quite apprehensive but i know i will feel ok today. The initial plan was to run 20km, but at KM5, I decided to just call it off at 15km. We went around Duta Solaris and back via Bukit Tunku aka Double Hill route, cut into the slip road to National Monument aka Tugu Negara and finishing on a downhill roll in 1:55.

I used to run this route and was never ever bothered by any sort of inclines. There are a few that took my breathe away - the very same one i regarded as "flat" when i was way fitter.

With my iron level showing good improvement and retention, the only thing holding back is the fitness level. I hope the iron level keep increasing and i hope my fitness return back to at least 90% by next month.

Jabir - thanks for the run. I needed it. Like your Reality Check Run about two years back, i believe i had mine today. I will keep moving forward and hope to be back at my peak.

Today i am 81.5kg with 15.3% fat. I will drop the numbers down and increase the muscle mass by September end. Don't wait up you all, i am coming back.

Project 365 : Day 73 of 365

Burying The Ghost
There. After a good 5 months and 11 days, i've decided to remove the Ironman 2010 wristband. It felt liberating. I had my 15km run today and this was the second time i felt good on a run. First being last week's Shape/Men's Health. It has been a roller-coaster for me since August 2009 and almost 1 year in, i am not fully recovered. Lets hope cutting this band away will bury the ghost that has been taking my iron away.
Tools: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2. ISO400. F3.3. 1/30

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Project 365 : Day 72 of 365

Self Portrait
Yesterday, a buddy remarked that i am running out of idea to take photos of to be shown in my 365. I agreed to an extend. And i hear him loud and clear that it should be a progressive improvement for photos; striking a balance between composition and technique. It got me thinking. Today, i was in the pool with the family and friends. With the hardy FT2 in hand, it is hard not to camwhore. Now, Camwhoring too, requires technique. And this one today showed pretty good composition - and two heart warming smile. I enjoyed my Saturday today, despite having only 3 hours of sleep as i was working until 4am this morning. This photo certainly will be developed, and put up on the wall.
Tools: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2. Intelligent Mode.

Homemade Muesli Goodness Bar

Two days ago, wifey and me had the wildest idea to make our own energy bars. We've eaten muesli, granola and those commercially available energy food which are supposed to be "healthy". Healthy is subjective as the bars available commercially are laden with a lot of extra ingredient, coloring and preservative.

This post was semi-inspired by OP Sofian Ironman Ismail. I was so impressed at the weigh he lost coupled with his inspiring training that i am a believer to his Energy Bar diet now.

So, the current chef-extraordinaire went to do some searching on the internet and found numerous recipes with even more ingredients and preparation. I am not a fan of crunchy energy bar as it is hard to chew and most of the time, inside a dry mouth, you can choke and it takes more effort to chew before swallowing. We decided to go for my all time favorite chewy type.

Some recipe call for flour and butter. Some are more basic and many other variation was available.

We decided what we wanted and a quick look inside the fridge and we found the ingredient below, which was used for the production of this first muesli bar at home.

Prune, walnut slices, cranberries, sunflower seeds, chocolate chips, honey, rice malt syrup and of course, a packet of roll cooking oats bought specially for this project. We need about 60grams of butter as well, which i supposed lend a bit of saltiness and helps to "cook" the oats in the oven, or prevent them from drying out.

We used the measurement of of of the recipe and mixed up to 900ml worth of rolled oats (or two cups), then the above ingredients are a handful each. We did not have the most basic energy bar item which is raisins. We ran out of them when i mixed it for my oat-muesli mix which i bring to office for meal.

We preheated the oven to 160 degree C and proceed to mix the item in a big bowl.

The above was handmixed to ensure good distribution of the items. Don't worry, we washed our hands.

Once the items are well mixed, it's time to put in some sort of liquid that will bond them together. We opted for Rice Malt Syrup. Those that know me will know that this is the main ingredient of my homemade powergel that had powered me through three Ironman races. They are slow burning complex carbs which releases energy progressively. It is also not sweet and not as icky as honey if you take it long term or for a prolong period of time.

I was two minded about putting in Laif's Maltodextrin to act as binding agent apart from being complex carb by itself. maltodextrin is found in all energy drink and food and a lot of us are using it during races by mixing the powder with our favourite fruit concentrate/syrups.

We swore we tried to mix the items with the spatula, but it was just too sticky and we ended up having to (wash our hands) use our hands...

We then put in soften butter and the consistency of the mixture become somewhat more bearable.

We then greased the 10inch by 10inch baking pan with the residue melted butter and spread the mixture onto the tray. it already looked yummylicious.

We placed them in the oven, cleaned up and waited for 20 minutes. The kitchen started to smell like a bakery again at 1130pm and when i came down from my bath, a pan of freshly made muesli bar was ready.

We just need to cut them into bite size pieces. a 10x10 pan made 12 of these goodness. Because we use only good stuff, it is not commercially viable. But we most welcome friends to come over and use our kitchen and produce a batch of their own. Electricity and company (plus coffee) on us. :)

I brought four pieces to the office and it was wiped out within 5 minutes. Most don't believe it was made. Again, i guess no one believe that me and wifey are multi-talented, and we are not just good at making babies. ;-)

Friday, August 06, 2010

Project 365 : Day 71 of 365

Plastic container showing all 4 delicious muesli bar made yesterday wiped clean. Perfect healthy meal to last the whole day, and hope to lose weigh. :) How to make it in the next blog entry.
Tools: D40+301.5. ISO200. F1.8. 1/250.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Project 365 : Day 70 of 365

Saw this bud growing out of the soil in the garden. Least expected it as the plant was infested with bugs. The mother plant, seen in the foreground has since been cured after immense TLC. And with TLC, out comes a new shoot. This plant is a keeper. Just like in life, nurture something with loads of love, it will be rewarding. In this case, give all your TLC to your loved ones, especially your kids if you have any. At this moment, i am finding it very hard to balance this with the crazy hours at work. I now, again, know, just how hard my dad has to work to bring food for the family and i see a cycle being repeated here. I just hope one day, my kids won't have to be working this hard, just to know this themselves.
Tools: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2. ISO80. F3.3. 1/100

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Project 365: Day 69 of 365

Fall In
I was attending a training course to be certified as a "Green Card" holder and i saw these water bottles lined up on one corner. They were placed on the table so orderly it actually intrigued me. One would thought that they will just leave these on the table for everyone to take, but this one, it was properly lined up in rows and columns. I was having a conversation with my mum about maid, about how my sister has a maid and about how one of my very rich auntie is now without a maid. How we are treating the maid and how my auntie is even limiting what the maid was eating. For me, if people can't live with another stranger in the home, then, don't hire one. They are also human. They also deserves respect. Remember, those of you with maids, those cloths, plates, floor, bottles and cups was not there magically.
Tools: D40+351.8. ISO1600. F1.8. 1/40

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Project 365 : Day 68 of 365

"We, B-B-G-S". B-B no more. The government decided that the best thing to do is to replace BBGS with this cold monster called Pavilion. I was in town for a course and brought along my camera to document a part of history, or what was left of it. There are things that nothing can take away and it is called memories. I bet the girls from B-B-G-S, them with ponytails and with shorts under their skirts, will hold very dear to this place, nevermind that it has became nothing but commercial value.
Tools: D40+Samyang 8mm Fisheyes. ISO200. F9. 1/125

Monday, August 02, 2010

Project 365 : Day 67 of 365

I saw this laborer wearing a worn out sandal today. He was lining up to pay for two packets of instant noodles. His body covered in what looked like paint. His dark skin looked sunburnt despite the shades. Scruffy looking and tiredness in his eyes. Must be pay day and he is stocking up on food for the next couple of days. I then looked at my feet, a pair of RM149 rubbery chic sandal envelope my ten heels. I felt really guilty. My mind says i should offer to pay for his purchase, or get him more. But all i could muster to myself was silence. You never know how lucky you are until you look around you, and see how a lot of people has to toil and put their sweat, tears and blood just to be able to afford a sandal that will last until his heels felt the pavement, or to afford 10 packets of instant noodles just to lace the hungry tummy.
Tools : iPhone 3Gs

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Project 365 : Day 66 of 365

These books reminds me of my childhood. It was circa 1989 when my parents bought me and my sisters these collection of encyclopedia and learning books. I recalled my mum saying that each month my dad need to pay about RM120 for the next 18months as part of the then easy payment package. I know many my age or around my age would know these books. I learnt a lot from them. Basic stuffs that kept my mind open and made me want to learn more. As a parent myself, i see wifey buying a lot of books too for the two kids. But i feel they are too young to comprehend them and if i assume along the same logic where "people typically do not appreciate what they have and always take them for granted" theory, my kids stand a very good chance not to appreciate these later in life if they were to recieve these. I have always known how much my dad has to sacrifice for the family, and these books are there at their home to remind me and my sisters just that; plus they are a boy to read nonetheless!
Tools: iPhone 3Gs.

Shape & Men's Health Run 2010

What a run. After last weekend's emotional rollercoaster, yesterday's night 12.3km run was certainly a way to mark me coming back and learning to take things easy.

People do this run for one main reason - the goodies bag. And make no mistakes that myself and wifey did it also for the same reason. In fact, i think this echoed amongst the 5000 participants yesterday night.

Myself and wifey arrived at Putrajaya at about 715pm and the first person i saw was also the first time i saw the person in real life. Hello Paul Lee!
Then, met up with the rest of the gang that took part in this race. Arif, Bahri and even a nice lady by the name of Farisa that has been following my blog. Thank you! You make me blush (and i know wifey must had thought i so wannabe celebrity blogger!)

There was some warm-up session that was conducted by some fitness instructors which got the whole crowd moving. I was also told (and missed) friends performing on the pole (as in pole dancing!). Should had come earlier!
The race started off at 810pm and i paced slowly with wifey. From the start, she looked like she will in trouble. Past two days of minimal sleep because Nadia has ulcer and sorethroat has kept her awake. We both sleep a combined total of 6hours or less yesterday morning (and here i am, at 530am, blogging...).
Putrajaya is humid and within 10minutes or less than 2km of running, i was already drenched. Suprisingly, i was feeling really fine and doesn't seems to have any symptom of racing heartrate. The iron supplement must had worked. I just hope it stays this way and here to stay. I need my blood iron badly. Doing endurance sports san inadequate blood iron level is ( i would not say suicidal) hard. Difficult.
As i was in no rush to finish the race, i decided to take it easy though i know i can do a sub-1hour for this. I can feel it. Now, before i start to get more arrogant, i was actually lectured by Shazly for racing. I found myself qualifying that "i took things easy".
I saw many familiar faces and new friends that i made during Siemens run two weeks ago. In fact, i had Freda Liu runner up to me and said "I am inspired by you". She attended the running class that i conducted and it is certainly very very nice to hear words such as these. I feel like i've given back something to the Tri-ing community. :)
With my condition to be good yesterday, i felt more alert and was very concious about everything and everyone around me. I managed to offer water to a few person as i always run with a bottle. It can get lonely running distance and more friends never hurt. I wish these people to continue doing all they are doing now for as long as they could. It is a healthy lifestyle which really can change the country if everyone does it.
Along the 12.3km route, i actually stopped, crossed the road and took a few photo with the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT2 (my camera of choice when it gets wet and dirty). Here are some shots, some ok, some not too good and some i have no idea why i took it. :)
In short, we had fun. Loads of it. I know wifey was pushing herself and i keep close to her. Very important i feel that we should support each other, especially so that we both just signed up for Powerman race to take part in the Relay this coming November. We both still has the Newton Run 25km in September then the Kinabalu run up the sky in October and what better way to end the racing calendar by doing Powerman?
In fact, i am thinking about the family jersey. E.A.R.N. is the acronym of all our names. You can guess it, myself, Ee-Van, Wifey's Aileen, Son's Ryan and Daughter's Nadia.
Myself and wifey again, ran together to the finish line, hand in hand and even stopped 20m to the line to snap one last pic with Nizz.
1:44 was our time. It is not fast, but it was enough for me and wifey to know each other's limit physically in races.
If my blood iron continue to improve, i am contemplating Desaru Long Distance Tri. Should i?