Tuesday, October 28, 2008


After helping my parents move into their apartment last weekend, we found some old albums and took some time flipping through them. It's such a weird and funny feeling looking at all these black & white pictures of us when we were small, and how we grew up and became what we are now.

Looking at them made me feel how quickly time has passed; and the things that I have missed out...

... then again, it reminded me on how much simpler and happier life was... when I was still innocent and naive... when I expected less...

Monday, October 27, 2008

Understanding the Financial Crisis

Friday, October 24, 2008

HeadHunters - The good, the bad and the ugly

Headhunting (in recruitment sense!) seem to be a very lucrative business nowadays. Many people are jumping into the bandwagon either as freelancers or agency bound headhunters. I have encountered many of them, both the freelancers type as well as agency bound type. Some of these encounters were very pleasant, some really drove me up the wall... and I am not even talking about whether they have any good job recommendations for me or not.

I think with any jobs, there should be a sense of professionalism. As there are basically any Tom, Dick and Harry becoming headhunters now, there are bound to be the good, the bad and the ugly. The following are ONLY based on my opinion as a candidate's point of view.

So what are "the good"? To me, I think a good headhunter should spend time to know more about you. They should meet you up in person or at least call you on the phone and have a formal interview to understand your personality, skill set, experience, attitude and what you are seeking for. They should use this info to match you with their clients... and keep it somewhere for future reference. They should inform you all they know about suitable job prospects and get your approval before doing anything.

They should also hold strictly to the confidentiality policy. Imagine having some pat kong or pat poh as a headhunter who spreads information about your salary or job application to everyone!! Unfortunately some headhunters do do so... thus "the bad" and "the ugly".

A good headhunter should also keep good rapport with you. I do understand and accept that they probably have a whole database of candidates and it's difficult for them to remember everyone; but like any other jobs, it's always good to do a bit of homework before you start contacting your candidates. I am happy to say that I am fortunate enough to know some of these good headhunters. Some of them are actually my friends before they embarked into this career. The unfortunate part is that so far, I never got any jobs through them.. and that could be my own problem, not theirs, hehe.

So what about "the bad" ones? Wow...there are so many of them. They basically call you out of the blue and tell you that they got your contact from some online recruitment sites that you signed up for. They don't tell you much about the job but will straight away ask you questions (usually not more than 5 questions):

"How long have you worked? You know this tool or that tool? How much are you earning now? What's your expected salary? What's your notice period?"

They didn't even bother to learn more about you... it felt like you are going through a mediocre factory inspection. When you ask them more about the job, they were so secretive... so scared that you will run away with the secret and apply the job independently. Some would say that they will send you an e-mail on the details of the job, most of the time you won't get anything.

What irritates me more is when the same headhunter contact you again and again for the same job; and asking you the same old questions... as if they had a memory loss that they have spoken to you before!

As for "the ugly", I have just experience one recently. This person suddenly sent me a message via Yahoo Messenger (YM) and told me he's a headhunter and had some good jobs for me. Well, I thought no harm finding out what were out there and so I played along.

He kept referring me as "Buddy" and I was rather irritated by that. He even asked me to call him for more details!! Cheapo headhunter or what?? Anyway I asked him to send me the details about the job via e-mail but he seemed to prefer talking about it on YM. I had to remind him a few times before I finally got the e-mail. The reason why I insisted on an e-mail was also to make sure that the e-mail address and company were authentic.

Anyway as he struck me as a very unprofessional person, I told him that I was not keen and would not proceed. You know what he told me? He said that he already submitted my info to the client. I was like "What?!! I haven't told you that I am interested!!". He then implied that if I put my CV up on those online recruitment sites, I shouldn't be worried about him sending my info to the client. That was so beside the point!!! I was very angry and told him (via YM) that I was no longer interested to deal with him and bye bye.

I couldn't believe the level of his unprofessionalism. I used to group headhunters into "the good" and "the bad" previously. This guy really opened my eyes to "the ugly" as well.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Responsible Dog Ownership Day 2008

We brought Axel to the Malaysia's Responsible Dog Ownership Day event at Central Park, 1U this morning. This event was organised by puppy.com.my. They have organised many similar events in the past but this was the first one that Axel has attended.

I thought Axel had a blast. He got to meet many friends, some whom he showed interest by sniffing; some he just walked on by. Hey, dogs do have preference too when it comes to making friends!

The turnout was huge. There were so many people and many different type of dogs around. There were also quite a number of pugs... but by the time Axel met up with them, he was already too tired and preferred to sprawl on the ground than to socialise.

There was one very disappointing thing to see though. Some dog owners did not pick up after their pets. They just let their dogs poo'ed everywhere and didn't bother to clean those up. After all, this is the Malaysia's Responsible Dog Ownership Day. I guess these are the bad apples that gave other dog owners a bad name. If you are one of these bad apples, SHAME ON YOU!!

Following are some of the pictures taken there.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Suvarnabhumi Airport

Exactly a week ago, I was in Bangkok enjoying myself. Wonderful moments came and gone... sigh... and now I really should get Bangkok out of my system. Else I am afraid I will succumb to post vacation depression.. if there is indeed such a term.

So here is the last set of the pictures taken during my recent Bangkok trip. These were taken at the Suvarnabhumi Airport.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Roti Sai Mai

On our way to Ayutthaya, we saw a lot of wooden stalls along the way. Some stalls were selling rats and birds carcasses (I didn't manage to snap any pictures of those, DARN!!), but most were selling these:

We were so curious about those colourful "things" in the plastic bags. Manida then told us that those were the "Roti Sai Mai" stalls.

Roti Sai Mai is actually a dessert with Islamic influence and is very popular in Ayutthaya. Manida insisted that we should give it a try; so she bought us a packet. If I am not mistaken, it cost her 25 baht.

It came with the bread (i.e. the Roti part) and the hairlike thingy (i.e. the Sai Mai part). The hairlike thingy is actually spun sugar... you know, very much like the cotton candy that most of us craved for when we were younger. If I remember correctly, Sai Mai means silky thread sugar. As for the Roti, it looked and tasted like popiah skin.

Now the next question is, how do you eat them?

The answer is pretty simple. Put the Sai Mai (the more the merrier) onto the roti and then fold it up like how you make a popiah. That done, sink you teeth into them!

The taste was... well... interesting. However as I don't fancy sweet stuff nowadays, I made and ate only 2.

Hmm...perhaps we should have given the rats and birds a try too.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


Ayutthaya city is the capital of the Ayutthaya Province in Thailand. This ancient city was destroyed by the Burmese army in 1767 and the ruins now form the Ayutthaya Historical Park. This is recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

I felt so honoured to be able to visit this great place, thanks to my ex-uni mate from USM, Manida. Manida is half Thai and is currently working in Bangkok. It's usually very difficult to get hold of her as she travels for work during the weekends. Thank goodness in my recent Bangkok trip, she was able to take a day off on Saturday to drive us to Ayutthaya. It took about 1 hour from Chatuchak (that's where we met up with her) to our destination.

We didn't visit all the sites there, instead we took our own sweet time covering Wat Mahathat.... and it was indeed the highlight of my trip!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Bangkok 10-13 Oct 2008

I was really looking forward to my trip to Bangkok early last week, but after the news about the serious clash between the demonstrators and police; my mood went downhill. I asked myself, did I need to cancel the trip as this was already a postponement from my Sept trip. I postponed that trip after Bangkok's previous Prime Minister declared a state of emergency during that time.

Anyway, I went ahead with my trip last Friday. The closest I got to the demonstrations was this:

They had a small demonstration at the Siam BTS station. I can't read the Thai words but I am guessing it's about the Tuesday's clashes as they were holding the pictures of those who were hurt and killed.

Other than that, things in Bangkok seemed business as usual. I did notice that there were not as many tourists around though... so indeed the demonstrations had made an impact to the tourism industry.

Anyhow, I really enjoyed myself... I always like this place and will continue to go there whenever possible. Like many of our previous trips there, we spent most of our time eating and lepaking around the shopping complexes. You would think I shopped a lot, right? You are wrong, I didn't get a single thing, serious!!!


The hall in front of IMAX, Siam Paragon


This is my favourite chain restaurant in Thailand. The food there is reaaalllllyyyy tasty!!!

Thailand Balloon Fest in CentralWorld

Car park... no la, it's the Bangkok jam

Must also go pray pray la..

Korea Festival at Siam Paragon

Siam Paragon, a very nice shopping complex

Some Thai pop stars officiating Marie France. No idea who they are but with the amount of screaming fans, they should be huge there.

We all need more love!!

I love this!! It's pork/beef stew noodles. Yum.... I took this everyday when I was there.

During this trip too, I managed to meet up an ex-university mate who is working in Bangkok. She took some time off and drove us to the ancient city of Ayutthaya. I will do a post on that later. That place was the highlight of my trip this time around.

Monday, October 6, 2008

In a spur of emotion

Throughout my working life, there have been many instances where people told me how they could not stand their jobs anymore and wanted to just resign. Throughout my working life too, there have been many instances where these words were uttered by me.

I sometimes wonder, does this happen to everyone? Do all jobs suck in a way or another?

Recently a friend told me about how he hated his job and that he wanted to just quit. I asked him why and he told me that he disliked doing the things that he is supposed to do. I am guessing the real reason is because he is having some frustrations in getting his work done under a very short notice.

I told him (like I usually tell anyone with the same intention) to give himself a few months and then revisit this feeling again. Sometimes we tend to react in a spur of emotion, but after a while after we have calmed down; we may not think that it's so serious anymore.

I did have many of my spur of emotion moments too.... and I always try to remind myself to shut my mouth, wait a few months and then decide whether the feeling is still as strong. If not, then I know I can still go on; if yes, then I will start my hunt.

Anyhow I am feeling okay at work so far. Have to be mindful in checking the emotions though, as you'll never know when the spur of emotion will attack.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Memori Tercipta

If you are a fan of 8tv (like me), you would most probably have seen this short clip before. It was shown on this TV station a while ago and I thought it was a really good song plus an interesting video.

The song's title is "Memori Tercipta" and the original singer is Shila, the recent runner up of the "One in A Million" singing competition. I think her vocals are damn good. Watch the video below for her full rendition of this song.

"Memori Tercipta" lyrics

Bergetar jiwa dipersada bercahaya
Pertemuan harapan pertama kalinya
Bergetar jiwa menghadapi mimpi-mimpi
Sukar dipercaya pintunya terbuka

Di sini jua memori tercipta
Walau seketika terjalin kasih kita
Mungkin di sini kita kan terpisah
Kenangan bersama tiada ku lupa

Mengalun suara sesuri bisikan hati
Seiringan mencari haluan berseni
Bergetar jiwa menghadapi mimpi-mimpi
Tiada pun terduga pintunya terbuka

Di sini jua memori tercipta
Walau seketika terjalin kasih kita
Mungkin di sini kita kan terpisah
Kenangan bersama tiada ku lupa

Yang terpahit jua termanis
Semuanya bagiku terindah
Ku ingati buat selama-lamanya

Di sini jua memori tercipta
Walau seketika terjalin kasih kita
Mungkin di sini kita kan terpisah
Kenangan bersama tiada ku lupa

Mungkin disini kita kan terpisah
Kenangan bersama (3x)
Mungkin disini kita kan terpisah
Kenangan bersama tiada ku lupa

PhotoHunt: Sad

Isn't this a sad looking spaghetti?

This is called the "all-in" spaghetti. It has a mix of sausage, egg and spaghetti of course; all stir fried together with the ready made pasta sauce.

Well... It tasted mmm... not so good but still edible, and I do remember taking a looooong time to stuff those in. And the beauty of all is, I was the cook.

Sad right?

Thursday, October 2, 2008


It is a practice to seek forgiveness and to forgive others during the Hari Raya. I think this is such a wonderful practice because only when you have completely forgiven someone that you are truly free from that fire of anger and ill will. I do not know about you, but I still have a long way to go in practising this. What more about forgiving our ownselves?

We are often our own worst critic. We are the ones who "bash" ourselves up for the mistakes that we have made. We are also the ones who constantly condemn ourselves for not being good enough.

This post is a reminder to myself to be more forgiving - to others as well as to my ownself.

Selamat Hari Raya, everyone!