Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Quote for the week

"Science is about discovery, not invention."

- from last night's episode of Numb3rs, which is the best so far ( this show just blows me away every single week! ). Yesterday, the 2 brothers investigated a murder involving a software company developing a programme for predicting human potential. Excellent script, top-notch acting ( as always ), with wonderful debates about the dangers of premature categorization not unlike the creation of a superior race so characteristic of Nazism.

There was some geeky yet cool stuff about binary codes and how submarines escape radar detection. They just make it so easy to understand - I love it. :)

Check your catalogues for re-runs this weekend.

Review Of King Kong

I'm rather tired, so this'll be in point form, if you don't mind.


1. Peter Jackson is a master director. No doubt about it.

2. The special effects are awesome.

3. Kong is amazing. Kudos to Andy Serkis and the Weta studio team.

4. Adrien Brody is SO HOT. ( My mom said it first, not me, heh heh. )

5. There're bits that resemble "Titanic", "Jurassic Park" and "Godzilla", but KK's sequences are loads better.

6. Singapore gets mentioned 4 - FOUR! - times. To much amusement among the moveigoers. Thanks, Mr. Jackson. :D

Favourite parts ( spoilers beware )

The chemistry between Brody and Naomi Watts ( luminous and fragile ). Watch for a few scenes on the S.S. Venture -- where they can't take their eyes off each other while she's filming on the deck; their first embrace in his room; when she opens her eyes and sees him reaching for her as she lies in Kong's massive hand at the edge of a cliff; when he yet again risks life and limb, climbing to the top of the Empire State Building to rescue her.

Yow. :)


1. It's a bit long. Lots of people running to and from the loos, haha.

2. There could've been a little LESS action. ( But that scene with the T-Rexes trying to munch Watts and Kong as they swayed in a tangle of vines was pretty inspired. )

All in all, however, I highly recommend it.

New Jazz Star

Well, if you caught American Idol Season 3, then John Stevens isn't really that new to begin with. I've been wondering about him these couple of years, and was pleasantly surprised when I came face to face with a stack of his albums at the CD store the other day.

Aptly titled Red, his debut effort boasts the producing powers of Steve Tyrell and David Foster, featuring well-loved favourites set to light, crisp arrangements.

Tracks worth sampling include This Love, done ballad-style in stark contrast to Maroon 5's chart-topping rock version; Let's Fall In Love, an enjoyable duet with Erika Christensen ( is she the blonde femme fatale from "Swimfan"? She's got a really nice voice, hmm. ); and The Shadow Of Your Smile, a lovely bossa nova mood piece which John delivers with great style.

He isn't in the same league as Michael Buble, of course. Neither does he play an instrument. But he's got some amazing pipes, with a tone that is unique and rich. I detect some vocal training in his latest performances, and he's certainly improved significantly since his AI days. Let's hope he realizes his full potential in the years to come.

Med Students Parade

They come, but never seem to go.

Not that I mind, so don't worry. Always good to have assistant phlebotomists around. :)

My sincere thanks to the batch that just left ( not sure if any of you read this ), for the very nice thank-you card about the ECG tutorials. I thought I was pretty grouchy most of the time, but I appreciate your understanding. :)

As for the current group, we've got a hodge-podge of students from Australia ( both Singaporean and native Aussies ), as well as 2 NUS 4th-years who impress me no end - they arranged for a 2-week unofficial stint with me during their short holiday break, demonstrate great enthusiasm for learning ( they go home and read up what I teach them, beat that! ), help in resuscitations, and even expressed interest in hanging out in the ER during my Christmas weekend shifts.

They also possess an admirable amount of knowledge, answering many questions intelligently, even if they don't always hit the nail right on the head.

Best of all, they can read ECGs pretty well - after just a couple of days of training.

I hope they enjoy the posting as much as I enjoy their company.


To a good friend who got married on Sunday. We met during a couple of surgical postings a few years back. Went through quite a lot together, and I couldn't be happier for the newlyweds.

The dinner itself was quite an interesting affair, since this friend is a year my senior, and I ended up sitting with a whole table of guys who're all older than I am.

However, they were extremely considerate and had me in stitches for most of the evening. Yes, they're older, but they sure know how to have fun! Conversation topics flitted from discussions about the wedding dinner soundtracks ( one guy even managed to identify the John Dunbar theme from "Dances With Wolves" - no easy feat, okay ), to King Kong ( turns out I was seated directly behind one of my dinner-mates at the same show, which kinda freaked him out, heh heh ), to the importance of having a "pee buddy" ( don't ask ).

Something else happened later on, after 1 fellow left and 2 others said something involving me and the guy who left and made me blush. But the comment was followed by a very sweet compliment, so you're forgiven, haha.

Thanks for a terrific evening, fellas. I don't think our paths will cross again anytime soon, but thanks. Really. :)

All Talk No Action

I'm grappling with a dilemma, but can't really tell anyone about it.

( Why do I always get myself into such situations? )

The signals are difficult to read, but I think they're there.

I caught a certain look the other day, but nothing more was said, and I made too much of an effort to conceal my reaction, so that was it.

Maybe that's just the way he is.

Wild Sex

Nothing racy, so clear your head.

It's the National Geographic Channel's fantastic series, which airs every Monday night at 10pm. First there were Deviants, then Macho Males, followed by Femme Fatales yesterday.

It's even better than comedy. Last week, the narrator made a big fuss about the gorilla's 5-cm penis. Then there's the absolutely ghastly scene depicting a male lion which murdered a pack of cubs sired by the former ( but now deposed ) leader. The part about the elephant seals was also fascinating - a female tried to roll herself into the ocean, but the male just squashed her with his massive weight and had his way with her.

Anyway, a girl praying mantis will continue to mate even after she begins devouring the boy. Who's more gross now eh?

A Rundown

As the year draws to a close, I'd just like to recall a few events from the past 12 months.

Best concerts:

1. Michael Buble, without a doubt.

2. Sting

3. Peter Cincotti in Rome

Best Movies:

Didn't catch many, but so far...

1. The 40-Year-Old Virgin

2. King Kong

3. Batman Begins

Best TV Shows:

1. House ( naturally )

2. Numb3rs

3. The Practice ( swansong season )

Best Books:

Again, I didn't read many...

1. Minos - Marcos Villatoro

2. Angels & Demons - Dan Brown

Best Albums:

1. Catching Tales - Jamie Cullum

2. It's Time - Michael Buble

3. The Italian - Patrizio Buanne

Best Food ( and Drink ):

I don't get out much though...

1. The strawberry margarita at Spageddies ( Paragon Basement 1 ).

2. The beef hotplate dish ( can't recall the name ) from Ichiban Boshi ( ate this at the Great World City branch ). Dude, you called it a mini Temple of Doom, remember? :)

3. The Mediterranean wood-fire pizza from The Tavern at The Tanglin Club. Can die ah.

4. Unbelievable doughnuts from this pastry shop in Takashimaya Basement 2 ( is it 4 Loaves or something? ). Oh crap, went shopping nearby with my cousin's kids last week but forgot to buy, argh!

5. Spaghetti vongole fresh from the sea at the fisherman's wharf in Sorrento, Italy.

Best Moments of Spontaneity

Not mentioned in previous entries, by the way.

1. A scramble for a dropped pen during my backstage visit with Peter Cincotti after his Rome concert. He was very apologetic, seemed a little flustered, but laughed good-naturedly. I got to the pen first, and he bestowed a very soft, lovely "thank you". Ahhh. :)

2. Michael Buble's death grip on my camera during the soundcheck party before his Indoor Stadium concert. He was taking a photo with another fan, and I tried to take my camera away as he was holding it and I thought it might ruin the picture for the other woman. I leaned in low and gently attempted to pry it from his fingers, but he refused to relent, so I gave up. Funny. :)

3. Patrizio Buanne's affectionate "mama" greeting, when I introduced my mother to him backstage following his Singapore showcase. It was the way he said it - Italian-accented, distinctly homesick, with a bit of theatrics thrown in. My mom still laughs about it to this day.

4. Some unintentional stalking by a fellow tour group member during my trip in Italy. 20-year-old Canadian of Italian descent travelling with his family. Obviously thought I'm also in my early 20s. Found him wandering on the wrong floor ( mine, not his ) for no discernible reason, after getting into an adjacent lift post-dinner. Very quiet chap, but we did sit at the same table in Venice, and he has the most amazing sky-blue eyes. Too bad our parents were there as well. :)

5. A nice stroll with another fellow from our tour group - a 19-year-old Indonesian studying in Toronto, also travelling with his family. We walked and talked a lot during the entire trip, but the one I remember most is in Florence, when I explained the anatomical landmarks on Michelangelo's Statue Of David to him, and we made a string of jokes along the way. Just met his mom and younger brother for dinner last month. Waiting for him to drop by, hopefully next year. More bantering to follow, heh.

6. A much appreciated bag of Ben & Jerry's ice-cream during a horrible shift. I know I've already thanked you, but honestly, it was immensely kind, and a real life-saver. :D

7. My cousin's beautiful little girl's "Can I hold your hand?" during an outing earlier this year. If there's no other motivation for me to have kids, this is definitely one of them. :)

8. The cheeky stare during dinner at Suntec. "Are you doubting me?", he asks. I reply that I am indeed. "Never doubt me" came the reply. Point noted. :D

It's time for my latest dose of House. No time for quote-collecting for the time being, but hopefully I'll get the next batch up sometime soon.

If I don't get to blog again before the weekend, here's wishing you a very Merry Christmas. :)

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