Monday, September 10, 2007

The Countdown

... has begun! :)

Annual leave has never tasted so sweet. Only XX more days to go...

Upheaval Part 2

I thought that chapter had closed, but the other party refused to let it rest.

Worse still, s/he chose to backstab in a desperate effort to discredit me, albeit by embellishing heavily, resulting in a story which is galaxies away from what actually transpired.

Thankfully, we have allies in other departments, and the venomous tale ( complete with the author's original signature ) was relayed to friends who then brought it to my attention.

It is indeed comforting to know that our colleagues have enough sense to differentiate fact from fiction, and that the culprit's dishonesty has been exposed.

But it is also sad and disappointing -- it always is -- to discover yet another lapse in character within the medical profession.

How bad is it? Let's put it this way -- the previous holder of the Public Enemy #1 title on my personal list has now been toppled to 2nd place. He should be very glad. :)

On A Lighter Note

A review of recent events:

Floorplay: 28th August, Esplanade Theatre

Official website located here.

It was really good, though not exactly fantastic.

I don't dance, but do love watching it. And with the recent resurrection of ballroom dancing in the form of TV shows So You Think You Can Dance and Dancing With The Stars, it's heartening to see its fanbase expanding beyond the usual middle-aged / elderly folk who frequent recreation clubs and community centres.

Opening night was attended by both young and old alike, with a large number of 20- and 30-somethings among the capacity crowd.

The dancers, who hail from Australia and Europe, did not disappoint! If you've already read the Life! review, you'd know about a particular item featuring a lone female dancer being twirled by a group of guys ( later while blindfolded ).
This is definitely the sexiest segment of the entire evening, because the men are all shirtless, and well, it's a rare one-woman-with-many-men scenario, yet done very tastefully.

But I have to admit, those recurrent shirtless episodes ( there were quite a few throughout the night ) made the word "Chippendales" pop into my head.

Not that I've ever watched the Chippendales. I've only heard of them. Really! :)

Google them if you're curious, haha.

Oh yeah, back to the review. :)

The details are a bit fuzzy 'cos it's been 2 weeks since the show, but the Paso Doble certainly stands out. The music is also memorable, from swing to salsa to contemporary pop pieces.

Interesting blends include Aretha Franklin's You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman set to a waltz, as is a beautiful Secret Garden hit.

Apart from the 20 hotbod dancers, there were 3 percussionists and 2 singers -- the female being by far the stronger of the mixed duo. She sang Tina Turner's Proud Mary like a real pro -- amazing!

Having lucked out with the central block seats, we ended up along the aisle, which turned out to be even better. The troupe sprinted and hopped past us at least 3 times, even stopping in pairs to twirl and kick just inches away from our seats. At one point, the ladies picked a few men from the audience to join them, while a tall blonde fellow with a ponytail gently led a young Chinese lady a few rows in front of us in a slow-dance, before gallantly kissing her hand and running back on-stage.

Ahhh, I just love men who exhibit European charm. ( Precisely why I loved my European trips so much. :))

Burn the Floor will no doubt return to our shores very soon, but I may not see them again for another few years. Although the footwork is flawless and the energy infectious, I got a little distracted towards the end of the concert. Whether it's the choreography or the sedate audience or my low energy level ( having rushed down after a long day at work ), I can't be sure.

All I can tell you is: Dirty Dancing rocks, and Strictly Ballroom is divine.

Put them in stage productions and I'll go every night. :)


If it weren't for my cousin's kids, I would probably visit the cinema less than 3 times a year.

This film comes highly recommended by yours truly, who is a huge fan of Pixar treasures ranging from Toy Story I & II and Finding Nemo to The Incredibles.

Ratatouille may be implausible in many ways, but it excels at character and story development, which makes the loopholes forgiveable.

Not an easy feat, especially where discerning adults like myself are concerned.

The verdict: I laughed my guts out too many times to count; I adore the animation ( of lead mouse Remy especially ); I love the action sequences; and I totally applaud how the movie maintains such exceptionally high standards yet manages to convey beautiful messages and make you cry in spite of yourself ( hardened cynic that I am ).

Worth a lot more than your movie ticket price. Don't miss this!

DVD Reviews

Zodiac: Oscar-worthy. Pick a category.

Music & Lyrics: Superb! Haven't loved a film this much since The Devil Wears Prada. Hugh Grant is terrific! I watched it twice!

The Good Shepherd: Yawn. Sorry.

300: Visually interesting, but ultimately a little vapid if you really think about it.

The Last King of Scotland: Forest Whitaker is a powerhouse! But I kinda dig James McAvoy's boyish rascal vibe. Whatever happened to him?

Entourage Season 3

I can't praise this series enough.

It keeps raising the bar with each new season, and I'm now so deeply invested in its characters ( especially devious agent Ari Gold, played by the incomparable Jeremy Piven ) I rearrange my TV viewing schedule for their sake.

What used to irk me as moronic behaviour now seems out of place if absent. Protagonist Vince Chase, initially marketed as a pretty boy purely for summer blockbuster purposes, now demonstrates impressive backbone by going against type and forfeiting whopping paychecks in favour of credibility and getting a good night's sleep.

Ari Gold, however, takes the cake. A recent episode had him scrambling in 10 different directions as he wrangled an $11 million deal from his ex-boss, set his sights on dominating Hollywood by setting up the largest agency yet, lost the deal ( don't ask ) then got it back by joining forces with his ex-boss' ex-wife.

Still with me?

Just last week, Ari had another artery-bursting rampage, as he struggled to salvage a movie project which he screwed up by being disrespectful to the film's ancient, crabby producer. After a head-spinning turn of events, he got fired by Vince.

I can't wait to see what happens tonight. :)

Time to go feed my cat his medicine. Poor thing's got some major gum problems. It happens when you're 70 years old ( 10 in human years ). But he's the best bolster in the world, so I'm not complaining. :)

Have a good week!