Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Everyday is Nyk-day

On Wednesday
Me: When are we back going back to grandma's house, Friday or Saturday?
Mom: Not sure yet. Why? What plans you have that you can't wait?
Me: Just want to meet up with a friend.
Mom: Who? Nyk?
Me: Yeah.

On Thursday
Mom: Who are you going out with?
Me: Nyk.

On Friday, at Midvalley
Mom: Who are you meeting for dinner later?
Me: Nyk. He's coming here to Midvalley after work.

On Saturday
Mom: Who are you going yam cha with?
Me: Nyk.

Mom: You and him very close ar? You talk on the phone with him so much and you still want to meet him.
Me: *smiles*

Hope you get well soon, my dearest Nyk *hugs*

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Gay rights protected in Nepal

It's amazing that a small country which is deemed backward economically is able to come to such an important and significant decision, whereas another small country nearby does not.

It is indeed a great Christmas gift to Nepalese (not that they celebrate Christmas anyway). It is something we should all be proud of as at least somewhere, some place progress is being made.

Taken from here

Nepal Supreme Court orders govt to guarantee gay rights
KATHMANDU (AFP) - Nepal's Supreme Court Friday ordered the government to enact laws to guarantee the rights of gays and lesbians, who have long complained of discrimination in the highly conservative Himalayan nation.

"The government of Nepal should formulate new laws and amend existing laws in order to safeguard the rights of these people," the judges said in their ruling.

"Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and intersex are natural persons irrespective of their masculine and feminine gender and they have the right to exercise their rights and live an independent life in society," the judges said in the ruling, a copy of which was obtained by AFP.

The court also ordered the government to form a committee to study existing laws and provisions of foreign countries on same-sex marriage and prepare laws to give it legal recognition in Nepal.

Rights activists hailed the ruling as a landmark decision.

"It's a very encouraging and progressive decision. We all feel we are liberated today," Sunil Babu Pant, president of the Blue Diamond Society which works on behalf of sexual minorities in Nepal, told AFP.

The society along with three other groups had filed a joint petition at the Supreme Court seeking legal status and rights for sexual minorities in April 2007.

"There were no specific laws to protect the rights of sexual minorities but the Supreme Court's decision has opened the doors to enjoy our rights," said Pant.

There are no official figures on sexual minorities but rights group estimate that homosexuals and transgender people account for nearly 10 percent of Nepal's 27 million population.

Although homosexuality is not listed as a crime under Nepali law, "unnatural sex acts" can be punished by up to a year in prison.

"Now it's the government's responsibility to make new laws to guarantee our rights and we will put pressure on the government to act on the decision," Pant said.

His organisation was founded in 2001 to address the needs of sexual minorities, and has received financial support from singer Elton John and other celebrities.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Will the real metrosexual please stand up?

One of colleagues from another department, J, was going to Taiwan and I asked a favour from her, which is to buy a bottle of toner for me.

Not that it is a very special toner, it's from Neutrogena but just that I haven't seen that range in Singapore.

Colleague J: One bottle is enough? You don't want to stock up?
Me: I think one bottle should be enough. Can last me about six months.
Colleague J: So long? I usually finish one bottle in three months.
Me: You sure? Maybe your bottle is smaller?

Anyway, me being a little kiasu, I asked my own department's colleagues.

Me: So how long does your bottle of toner? More than three months?
Colleague K: Real men don't use toner.
Me: *rolls eyes*
Intern L: Huh? My boyfriend thinks the same. He doesn't use toner either.
Me: Let me guess. If he doesn't use toner, I suppose me he still uses soap?
Intern L: Yeah, he does. And I always tell him it's too dry on the face.
Me: It is! (my voice was a little high pitch with exasperation!)

In case it isn't obvious, K is a guy and L is a girl.

So it got me wondering, where are all the metrosexuals that are mentioned in the media? Are they just a myth?

Are they really just gay guys whom straight colleagues think are fabulous and beauty conscious?

Clearly they don't exist in my company, or at least in my department.

Needless to say, I am the designated "metrosexual" since I go to facials.

For my department's gift exchange / secret santa, I was asked what do I prefer. Nothing specific of course, but I was thinking about things like books, shirts, etc.

Instead, I asked what do they think I would want.

ALL of them said they would get me some beauty products like facial wash or something from Body shop.

And I did end up with something from Body Shop.

A very Merry Christmas to you, dear reader! *hugs*

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Doing it again

I can now understand why people would do things again, like rereading a book or watching a movie again.

I am not one to do such a thing, unless I find the movie or book to be extremely good or very moving, which is rare. I mean, what's the point of going through it again as the ending or conclusion is already known?

I suppose it's the journey and not the destination that matters.

I have reread one of the Harry Potter books though, but that was because I have forgotten some parts of the plot and what has transpired earlier.

Anyway, on Wednesday, I had the opportunity to watch the Golden Compass again, this time courtesy of my company's generosity as we were treated to Gold Class seats.

I thought I would have fallen asleep on those comfy reclining chairs with blankets provided, but no, I was quite enraptured with the movie.

Watching it again, I was able to observe some small details which I missed and to take in the story more acutely. It seemed as though I was watching it for the very first time.

And I must admit, it was pretty good and the story was quite cohesive though still a little rushed from one scene to another. My earlier opinion that those who didn't read the book wouldn't completely grasp the story, in retrospect, seem hasty.

Though from the lackluster box office receipts in the U.S., it does appear that a second movie is unlikely and to find out what happens one would have to read the books.

About books, I was reading one of the books which I bought earlier, which was SQ21: Singapore Queers in the 21st Century. It is a compilation of real-life stories of Singaporeans who shared part of their life stories. As I was reading it, it still stirred some emotions, which caught me by surprise a little.

I am always keen on trying out new things, reading new books, catching the latest movies but now I realised that perhaps revisiting the familiar is not so bad after all, as it could be a whole new experience again.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Golden Disappointment

Sigh, the movie was disappointing.

Goes to show one should never judge a movie by its trailer.

Those who have not read the book would be utterly confused, unless he can follow the whole proceedings of the movie attentively and put them all together in nanoseconds.

The story just zips through from one scene to another. Even though I know it is impossible to squeeze a 400 page book into a 2 hour movie or a 3 month long journey into 5 minutes, but moving through the whole motions at such a breakneck speed doesn't do the story any justice.

There were a few things which was changed from the book. Not too drastic a change but I can understand where the producers were coming from to make the movie more manageable and a few less things to explain.

I totally agree with Janvier about the whole daemon-human connection thing being lost in the movie. The scene where Billy Costa (in the book it was a different) was found after the intercision had no impact at all, as his parents and the gyptians didn't even blink an eye for his missing daemon.

If one were to read the reviews from IMDB, it would seem that those who haven't read the book found the movie to be good. Those who had read the book would inevitably say that the book is better, which is true. Movies very seldom can live up to the books, not even the famous boy wizard.

I strongly suggest that viewers go buy the book after watching movie. Or better yet, pay a little more and just buy the book and forget about the movie.

Overall, I would rate the movie 6 out of 10.

Monday, December 03, 2007

The Kingdom

I watched The Kingdom on Monday and I came out with a headache.

Not that the storyline was very complicated that I had hard time understanding it, but because of the jerky and panning camerawork ala The Blair Witch Project.

I had dinner before that and somehow it made me feel worse. My full stomach coupled by the "gritty" feel intended by the director made me feel nauseous during the second half of the movie.

The plot, taken from IMDB:
Americans living and working in a secure American compound in The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia are out enjoying themselves playing baseball when suddenly terrorists breach the compound and begin shooting everybody in sight. The terrorists succeed in their mission, killing hundreds of Americans, including men, women, children, and an FBI special agent. A team of FBI counter-terrorism agents (led by Jamie Foxx) want to go to Saudi Arabia and investigate the attack, but the U.S. State Department says no, but with a little pressure, they end up going anyway. Once in Saudi Arabia they find themselves isolated and unable to investigate the crime scene by orders from Saudi officials. The governmental bureaucracy and cultural differences cause conflict between both of them. The Saudi troops know that the FBI agents are targets of the terrorists, and they dont want another disaster on their hands. However, when the American agents become friends with a Saudi police officer, they begin to work together to bring the terrorists to justice.

It was quite a good movie, fast paced, with a lot of shooting and explosions. It is also very relevant post September 11. This is the second movie shown here in Singapore about current affairs of the world as a result of terrorism. The first movie was Rendition.

I would have definitely enjoyed it more if not for the camerawork. The same reason I don't enjoy First Person Shooter games and avoid them like the plague. I prefer to be looking down at my character rather then from them.

Oooh, it's already Sunday and The Golden Compass beckons.

My company might have a movie outing to watch Golden Compass after our annual Christmas dinner and I surely don't mind watching again.

And judging from the reviews thus far, I think I am right!