Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Quote of the Day

If you observe a really happy man you will find him building a boat, writing a symphony, educating his son, growing double dahlias in his garden.

He will not be searching for happiness as if it were a collar button that has rolled under the radiator.

 - W. Beran Wolfe

Monday, September 26, 2011

US vs UK - for a good laugh

Had a good laugh. You will too!

E-mail from the  Queen,  important announcement regarding the USA
To the citizens of the United States of America
from Her Sovereign Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

In light of your immediate failure to financially manage yourselves and also in recent years your tendency to elect incompetent Presidents of the USA and therefore not able to govern yourselves, we hereby give notice of the revocation of your independence, effective immediately.
Her Sovereign Majesty Queen Elizabeth II will resume monarchical duties over all states, commonwealths, and territories (except Kansas, which she does not fancy).
Your new Prime Minister, David Cameron, will appoint a Governor for America without the need for further elections.
Congress and the Senate will be disbanded.  A questionnaire may be circulated sometime next year to determine whether any of you noticed.
To aid in the transition to a British Crown dependency, the following rules are introduced with immediate effect:
1. The letter 'U' will be reinstated in words such as 'colour,' 'favour,' 'labour' and 'neighbour.'  Likewise, you will learn to spell 'doughnut' without skipping half the letters,  and the suffix '-ize' will be replaced by the suffix '-ise.'  Generally, you will be expected to raise your vocabulary to acceptable levels.  (look up 'vocabulary').
2. Using the same twenty-seven words interspersed with filler noises such as ''like' and 'you know' is an unacceptable and inefficient form of communication. There is no such thing as U.S. English. We will let Microsoft know on your behalf.  The Microsoft spell-checker will be adjusted to take into account the reinstated letter 'u'' and the elimination of  '-ize.'
3. July 4th will no longer be celebrated as a holiday.

4. You will learn to resolve personal issues without using guns, lawyers, or therapists.  The fact that you need so many lawyers and therapists shows that you're not quite ready to be independent.  Guns should only be used for shooting grouse.  If you can't sort things out without suing someone or speaking to a therapist,then you're not ready to shoot grouse

5. Therefore, you will no longer be allowed to own or carry anything more dangerous than a vegetable peeler.  However, a permit will be required if you wish to carry a vegetable peeler in public.

6. All intersections will be replaced with roundabouts, and you will start driving on the left side with immediate effect.  At the same time, you will go metric with immediate effect and without the benefit of conversion tables.   Both roundabouts and metrication will help you understand the British sense of humour.

7. The former USA will adopt UK prices on petrol (which you have been calling gasoline) of roughly $10/US gallon.  Get used to it.

8. You will learn to make real chips.  Those things you call French fries are not real chips, and those things you insist on calling potato chips are properly called crisps.  Real chips are thick cut, fried in animal fat, and dressed not with catsup but with vinegar.

9. The cold, tasteless stuff you insist on calling beer is not actually beer at all.  Henceforth, only proper British Bitter will be referred to as beer, and European brews of  known and accepted provenance will be referred to as Lager.  New Zealand beer is also acceptable, as New Zealand is pound for pound the greatest sporting nation on earth and it can only be due to the beer.  They are also part of the British Commonwealth - see what it did for them.  American brands will be referred to as Near-Frozen Gnat's Urine, so that all can be sold without risk of further confusion.

10. Hollywood will be required occasionally to cast English actors as good guys.  Hollywood will also be required to cast English actors to play English characters.  Watching Andie Macdowell attempt English dialogue in Four Weddings and a Funeral was an experience akin to having one's ears removed with a cheese grater.

11. You will cease playing American football.  There are only two kinds of proper football; one you call soccer, and rugby (dominated by the New Zealanders).  Those of you brave enough will, in time, be allowed to play rugby (which has some similarities to American football, but does not involve stopping for a rest every twenty seconds or wearing full kevlar body armour like a bunch of nancies).

12. Further, you will stop playing baseball.  It is not reasonable to host an event called the World Series for a game which is not played outside of America.  Since only 2.1% of you are aware there is a world beyond your borders, your error is understandable.  You will learn cricket, and we will let you face the Australians (World dominators) first to take the sting out of their deliveries.

13. You must tell us who killed JFK.  It's been driving us mad.

14. An internal revenue agent (i.e. tax collector) from Her Majesty's Government will be with you shortly to ensure the acquisition of all monies due (backdated to 1776).

15. Daily Tea Time begins promptly at 4 p.m. with proper cups and saucers, and never mugs, with high quality biscuits (cookies) and cakes; plus strawberries (with cream)  when in season.

16. Stop fighting wars in other people's countries: you haven't got a clue on how to end it leave the place in a bigger mess than it ever was in the first place

17. Start serving smaller meals (burgers, etc) are already the most 'obese' nation in the world...and you are getting worse day by day.

God Save the Queen!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

A fitting lesson for Malaysian Ministers and Bureaucrats

The closest person I can think of who resembles this would be the Chief Minister of Penang.

US ambassador cuts right cloth for the masses

By Wu Zhong, China Editor

HONG KONG - About a month after his arrival in Beijing to take up his new post as United States ambassador to China, former commerce secretary Gary Locke has aroused wide public attention, curiosity and controversy with his seemingly simple lifestyle and people-friendly posture.

Locke, the first Chinese-American to become US ambassador to China, arrived in Beijing in economy class on August 12. Television footage showed a leisurely dressed Locke walking out of the airport with a backpack, like a backpacker tourist in every way.

Then a Chinese tourist posted a photo on the Internet showing Locke sporting a small backpack and buying his own coffee at Seattle's airport Starbucks.

These scenes immediately created a buzz among Chinese netizens. It was hard for them to imagine Chinese officials doing such things. Even the New Left, who are critical of capitalism and against China becoming "Westernized", praised Locke. On Utopia, a major website of the New Left, a commentary said, "Compatriot Locke, hypocritical as his acts may be, is however giving a good lesson to our cadres on how not to cut themselves off from the masses."

After accompanying United States Vice President Joe Biden on a tour to Chengdu, the provincial capital of Sichuan, Locke flew back to Beijing on an Air China flight on August 23 - again in economy class. The next day, a stewardess of the flight wrote on her blog:
Yesterday, Ambassador Gary Locke flew back to Beijing on our flight. Not only did he reject attempts by our ground staff to give him special VIP treatment, he also rejected an upgrade to first class as well as the coach on arrival. In economy class, Locke remained polite and unassuming throughout the entire journey, while another customer in first class began making demands as soon as he boarded the flight. What a stark difference. [1]
This time, even some well-known personalities including business tycoons joined in the discussion:
Pan Shiyi (real estate tycoon of SOHO China fame): Watch and learn, there's nothing else to say!

Ren Zhiqiang (another real estate mogul), to Pan: You want to learn from him how to spend taxpayers' money?

Pan Shiyi: No matter whose money you're spending, one needs to remain thrifty and polite. The way I see some people spend taxpayers' money, it is as if they have an unspeakable hatred for money - that's not good.

Hong Huang (founder of iLook): Gary Locke is doing what he should be doing as a public servant of a democratic nation - not waste taxpayers' money unnecessarily. Boss Pan, the money you spend is yours. In any case, we should all do whatever makes us feel comfortable.

Author An Puruo was a whole lot more cynical about the entire affair:
He bought economy class, yes. But most airline companies, when they find out who you are, they'll give you a free automatic upgrade. Some people take it, but this guy chose not to. Else he wouldn't have had to buy his own coffee at the Seattle Airport the other day. There's free coffee in the first class lounge. And there's also VIP access upon arrival at the Beijing Airport. If he had chosen to use the VIP access, then there wouldn't have been a photo opportunity for him and his suitcases. [2]
Locke gave his first speech as ambassador on September 9 at Beijing's Foreign Studies University. He said:
I know that there are very high expectations for my tenure as US ambassador to China. After all, I am the first Chinese-American to hold this post. And I do have a proven record - as a governor, as a commerce secretary, and as a person who has mastered the art of buying his own coffee, wearing a backpack and carrying my own luggage.
The next day, to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival, Locke took his wife and three children to visit a charity art show for children of migrant workers in Beijing. Chinese children's story writer Zheng Yangjie was present. Locke's children were dressed so simply and casual that Zheng mistook them as children of migrant workers. Zheng was about to introduce one of them to Locke before the ambassador smiled and said, "She is my daughter."

The story quickly circulated on the Internet. Some bloggers commented that Locke's simple lifestyle and people-friendly approach formed a striking contrast with the behavior of Chinese officials. So much so that it seem the new US ambassador came to Beijing with the idea of giving Chinese officialdom a lesson. [3]

But the climax of the Locke buzz came on September 14. At the annual meeting of the New Champions of the World Economic Forum in Dalian, the swanky host of state-owned China Central Television (CCTV) Rui Chenggang successfully put himself in the limelight once more by asking Locke, "I hear you flew here coach. Is that a reminder that the US owes China money?"

Locke replied by saying that economy class was standard practice for all diplomatic staff of US embassies and consulates, as well as for members of the president's cabinet. "As a very easy-going person, I believe I'm a good representative of the way Americans do things," added Locke. "I hope this type of openness will help Chinese and Americans to better understand each other, to break down walls, and to dispel misunderstandings, even though we may have cultural, political, economic and philosophical differences." [4]

Unsatisfied with Locke's answer, Rui later wrote on his blog on that Locke always made use of whatever opportunities he had to promote American values - only highlighting the positive aspects of the US and ignoring its negative aspects.
That's his job. Of all the people who have served as US ambassador to China, he's probably the one that's most open to revealing himself, and the one best at doing so. From the haversack to the coffee to the coach and the economy class, he has cleverly used all photo opportunities available to him. He's been a governor before, he knows how to handle the media.
Rui is a controversial TV host in China. He first caught public attention in 2007, when he initiated a campaign to force Starbucks to pull its shop out of the Forbidden City. Last year, at the Group of 20 summit in Seoul, Rui shot to international infamy by claiming himself as "representing Asia" when US President Barack Obama specifically asked for questions from the Korean media.

This time, his comment on Locke upset many Chinese commentators and netizens. Some print media commentaries said Locke's behavior showed how public spending was well regulated in the United States and they called on the Chinese government to impose strict regulations on the spending of public funds.

A commentary on Guangzhou-based Punyu Daily said:
Compared with Locke, many of our officials should feel ashamed. Even in poor places, officials are never sparing of public funds. A fresh example is that Zigui, a poverty laden county (in Hubei province), has spent 800,000 yuan (US$123,000) in 20 days to entertain a 13-member inspection team from the provincial government. Needless to say, officials in rich places squander public funds even more recklessly. It is a joke to say that Locke travels on economic class because the US owes China money, but it is a fact that many officials in China do think that money speaks louder than anything else.

As everyone knows, this is because China's "rules" are no deterrent at all. If Locke were like the 13 Hubei provincial government inspectors were to spend in equivalent terms, a sum of more than 200 Zigui peasants' annual income in just 20 days - including "accepting gifts" worth about 120,000 yuan - his career would be finished and he might even have had to face lawsuits. [5]
Others argue that it is short-sighted to think China now is superior to the US just because China is America's largest creditor. By all means, the US is still a much stronger and more advanced country than China.

Some question whether Locke is simply making a "show" of things. Even if this were the case, "Such a show can inspire people and solicit public support. Thus it is effective and legitimate," a column in the Guangzhou-based Yangcheng Evening News said. This implies such "shows" are needed in China, but that Chinese officials are unable to do so because they think they are superior to people. [6]

More cynical Chinese netizens ran a "composition contest" to write Rui-style questions in satirizing corrupt Chinese officialdom and expressing their discontent:
  • Hear you have brought your wife to Beijing. Is that a reminder that you Americans are ignorant that in China officials can have concubines?
  • Hear that you don't have so many corrupt officials. Is that a reminder that your country is so poor that there is nothing that can be taken as bribes?
  • See your leaders are slim and our "servants" are so fat. Is that a reminder that you are poor?
  • Hear that the mayor of New York travels on the subway. Is that a reminder that you cannot even afford to equip your officials with public cars?
  • Hear that you elect your president every four years. Is that a reminder that you have too much leisure time?
  • Hear that you American do not sing Red [Revolutionary] songs. Is that a reminder that you do not have qualified musicians?
  • Hear that you don't build high-speed railways. Is it a reminder that you American people are cowardly, afraid of death?
  • See you look smarter than us. Is that a reminder that you Americans have grown up without drinking Sanlu [melamine-contaminated] milk powder?

    Anyone who has even a rudimentary knowledge of what has been happening in China cannot help but smile.

    1. Ambassador Gary Locke flies cattle class, Chinese netizens stunned, Shanghaiist, Sep 1, 2011.
    2. Ibid.
    3. Rui Chenggang to Gary Locke, Shanghaiist, Sep 14, 2011. 4. Click here for Chinese text.
    5. Click here for Chinese text.
    6. Click here for Chinese text.

    (Copyright 2011 Asia Times Online (Holdings) Ltd. All rights
  • Saturday, September 24, 2011

    Thought for the day

    To will and not to do when there is opportunity,
    is in reality not to will;
    and to love what is good and not to do it,
    when it is possible,
    is in reality not to love it.

    -- Swedenborg

    Friday, September 23, 2011

    Do not harm, and you will not be harmed

    Lately, my businesses has been disrupted by a number of factors.
    Ranging from a MCA politician to competitors, but it now looks like they were just mere distractions.
    Perhaps it is luck.
    Perhaps it is fate.
    No one can say but God.
    Reminds me of this part of the Quran.

    Qur'an, Al-Ma'idah, 5:11

    Believers, do not forget how Allah bestowed His favor upon you by restraining the hands of those who sought to harm you; so remain conscious of Allah, and depend only upon your Lord.

    Tuesday, September 20, 2011

    What does your room tell you?

    When I woke up this morning lying in bed, I was asking myself, What are some of the secrets of success in life? I found the answer right there, in my very room.
    AND NOT TO FORGET, THE CARPET SAID... KNEEL DOWN AND PRAY. Carry a Heart that Never Hates. Carry a Smile that Never Fades. Carry a tongue that never hurts. Carry a Touch that Never Hurts.

    Saturday, September 17, 2011

    I do not fear death - Taken from

    I do not fear death

    I will pass away sooner than most people who read this, but that doesn't shake my sense of wonder and joy

    Wednesday, September 07, 2011

    Letter Humor

    Dear Female Twilight fans,
    Please  realize that because vampires are dead and have no blood pumping through them, they can never get an erection.Enjoy  fantasizing about that.

    Dear  Icebergs,
    Sorry to hear about the global warming. Payback's a bitch!
    The Titanic

    Dear America ,
    You produced Miley Cyrus. Bieber is your punishment.

    Dear Yahoo,
    I've never  heard anyone say, "I don't know, let's Yahoo! it..." Just saying...

    Dear 2010,
    So I hear the best rapper is white and the president is black? WTF happened?!

    Dear girls who have been dumped,
    There are plenty of fish in the sea... Just kidding! They're all dead.

    Dear Saturn,
    I liked it, so I put a ring on it.

    Dear  jf;ldsfa/kvsmmklnn,
    Please lknvfdmv.xvn.
    Stevie  Wonder

    Dear Skin-Colored Band Aids,
    Please make one for every  skin color.
    Black people

    Dear Scissors,
    I  feel your one wants to run with me either.
    Sarah Palin

    Dear Osama Bin Laden,
    United States

    Dear World of Warcraft,
    Thank you for ensuring my son's virginity.
    Parents Everywhere

    Dear Batman,
    What was your power again?

    Dear Customers,
    Yes, we ARE making fun of you in Vietnamese.
    Nail Salon Ladies

    Dear Ugly People,
    You're  welcome.

    Dear White People,
    Don't you just hate immigrants?
    Native Americans

    Dear iPhone,
    Please stop spell checking all of my rude words into nice words. You piece of shut.
    Every iPhone User

    Dear Man,
    It's cute, but can you pick up peanuts with it?