"The happiest place on earth"

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Saturday, November 29, 2003

OAP's Michelbungalo - An artistic pensioner has spent 20 years painting his house — into a copy of the famous Sistine Chapel. When I become a pensioner, I want to do funky things like this.

Fasting fakir flummoxes physicians - Doctors and experts are baffled by an Indian hermit who claims not to have eaten or drunk anything for several decades - but is still in perfect health. The human body is mysterious indeed

Love 'as addictive as cocaine' - Love could be as addictive as cocaine or speed, scientists have said. Going by the logic of the war against drugs, we should ban love too.


Dihydrogen Monoxide Research Division - dihydrogen monoxide info

Kids Think There Is Too Much Tv Sex - Two-thirds of youngsters think there is too much sex on some TV programmes. And many are cynical about raunchy pop videos made by stars such as Britney Spears - claiming they are a cover for lack of talent. One 12-year-old boy said of Britney: "She's selling us her looks basically. I think she's not got anything between her ears - and her voice isn't that good either."

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

Melvin has been put on the Unit Fitness Program as well, and his weight is also being monitored. I think this is really unfair, because unlike me, his BMI is only slightly above 25. Hell, many regulars are fatter than him. The sin that got him into this? Failing SOC. And in his case, I don't think 5BX, UFP or losing 500g of weight is going to help him any bit.

To build up our arm power, our CSM has decreed that all those in the UFP have to perform a certain exercise, which I shall describe shortly, three times a day - during 5BX, at 11:45 and at 5:00. The exercise involves a full water bottle and a stick, to which a length of comms cord is tied. The water bottle is tied to the comms cord, and we hold the stick out at chest level and turn it till the bottle is pulled up to reach the stick. How effective this is in training our pull-up ability, I don't know, but it can't be very much so.

We had a familiarisation shoot with the SAR 21. I was tired from UFP, 5BX, Company Runs, Overtime done to produce useless, superfluous, unnecessarily detailed statistics and such and only got 2/10 for one round. But there were others who got 1/10 or 0/10 :0

The flurry of activity in the SAF with regards to safety is useless. At the top levels, committees are convening and reviews are underway. People are coming down to check safety procedures more often. At at ground level, we are forced to implement more useless measures for show - for example, signing more forms so higher-ups are covered and taking ridiculously-easy tests on Training Safety Regulations (as if knowing the regulations means you'll follow them). Regardless of the final result, all they are doing is trying to ameliorate the symptoms and not attacking the root of the problem - the culture of the SAF. A culture which prizes rank over ability and intelligence. A culture of fear and regimentation. A culture which discourages thinking and encourages the blind following of orders, no matter how brainless or immoral. Ultimately, the culture and tradition, built up over 36 years, of an unnecessary conscription which enslaves the flower of our youth and proceeds to dehumanise them.

We shifted our bunks for the 2nd time in 5 months. And supposedly we're due to shift again in February. How gloriously efficient. When we moved in, our new bunk was dirty as hell. The areas under the beds looked like they'd been unswept for months. There were cigarettes strewn all around the bunk, giving me the impression that it was the 3rd smoking point on the 4th floor of HQ Company. There was hair everywhere, even in the drawers, leading us to suspect people had moonlighted as barbers. And all the tables and chairs were filthy. On the bright side, our new bunk is more spacious, having 4 fewer cupboards and 4 fewer beds and both fans are working so it is less hot, stuffy, humid and smelly, especially at night. Alvin is no longer sleeping with us, having shifted to another bunk, so we are no longer treated daily to the sight of the Television tuned to Chinese-dubbed anime like Card Captor Sakura at 6am in the morning, something I think we all hated but didn't have the heart to stop.

It seems I'm being arrowed incessantly for duty. This month I've done 2 weekends and 2 weekdays. I better not get *any* duty next month.

A puzzle I've been pondering over for a while: There are no Muslims in my unit, so why do we ALWAYS get Muslim Combat Rations when we go outfield?! I miss the pasta!

They have this "Positive NS Experience" dialogue coming up and apparently all those who have no complaints about NS and are generally going are happy. I want to go too, but they'll never send me. Oh well, I suppose the name of the thing says it all - they want to hear about Positive Experiences, so they can continue being deluded.

The organiser of our Games Day told us to be there at 7:45am. Our CRO (Company Routine Orders) told us to be there at 7:30am. And then our CSM brought the time back to 7:15am after that. In the end we waited till 7:45am for everyone to come anyway, and people like me had to drag themselves out of bed before 6 to reach Pasir Ris Park in time. "Rush to wait, wait to rush" indeed. What a waste of time.

During the Games Day we had Tug Of War, last held about a year ago. As usual, HQ won since we've all the fat people (though girth and tug of war ability are not exactly proportional). And as usual, we didn't win, even though we've the most people. We also got to vote on a new battalion T-shirt, in a typically inefficient SAF fashion, involving everyone in the battalion lining up behind their chosen design, resulting in indistinct lines and general pandemonium. The design that won overwhelmingly was one with a - get this - white horse (representing a "Bronco") on it. So 3 years after the White Horse system was scrapped in the SAF, we will have a whole battalion of White Horses!

I remember when Bayesian filtering first came out, people were crowing about how spam was finally defeated, since spammers rely on the contents of their emails to peddle their wares, and Bayesian filtering targets those very contents. Sadly, it seems spammers are wising up, and are either substituting funny characters for real letters (eg p0rn), breaking up or merging keywords (eg V-I-A-G-R-A, ParisHilton), adding nonsensical words into their message bodies (eg lqfnjiavljloianx, vkffrzy) or embedding images of their ads instead of having them in text form.

Brainless motivational poster: "Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your mind off your goals". That might be the case, but whether or not you see them, obstacles are there. Burying your head in the sand like an ostrich is not going to make the obstacles go away. Isn't it better for you to proceed, aware of the obstacles and thus able to avoid or overcome them than proceed on like an over-optimistic, fool misled by too many motivational posters?

I think "Are You Hot?" marks a new low in Reality TV. Make that non-pornographic Reality TV, for I think Voyeur Dorm is at the next level. It's all wrestling's fault, I say, but at least in the WWE, they admit that it's scripted.

Me: Why do people watch wrestling if it's scripted?
Friend: Because the script is good.


42 loves you. [Me: If that is love, I don't want to know what hate is]

[On my troubles] I know it's painful lah, but what can we do? This is 42.

[Sign] Secular Engineering & Construction Pte Ltd

[On why Koi have reappeared in the RSM's pond] 42 is going downhill.

[On SIB - Special Investigation Branch - monitoring my blog] Wah. SIB must be very fun.

I am the Master Of Office. Don't doubt me.

You all have been briefted on how to do the clicking right. (briefed)

Where's the "Army Dream Girl?" [Someone: She's there what. *points to one side*]

[On our compiling useless, superfluous, unnecessarily detailed statistics] Does he also want to know whether they like cheese burgers or veggies burgers?

[On calling someone] Hi Sir, I'm at Ponderosa now, eating [a] buffet. [Me: Eating Ice Cream] What can you do about it?

Quote of the Day:

"Tantum religio potuit suadere malorum" (Lucretius, On The Nature Of Things)

Rejected Economist Letters (the identity of the person shall remain a mystery, to protect his identity):


I protest against the comment that "Malaysia is probably now the most repressive country in non-communist South-East Asia, after Myanmar" (After Mahathir, Oct 30th). South of the border, there is at least one non-communist country which has almost no public demonstrations to speak of ( bar the occasional noisemaker in front of the Istana ); has no independent local mass media ( the government has the controlling stakes in both the big media companies); whose unions are led by government ministers; continues to use basically the same laws that Malaysia has to place people under arbitrary arrest- and indeed, has an even smaller opposition presence in parliament than its neighbour. When it comes to being "repressive", my country surely wins hands down. Perhaps Dr Mahathir did have a point about western media bias after all.
My brother in law just brought "Bam Bam" home. My mother is not talking to him.

I wonder how this will resolve.

Search Engine Referralss:

gollum politician - ???

burger king bmt course

Compulsory NS for girls - Mmm.

webshots community zaogeng - Isn't that illegal and against their TOS?

"night training" sex lessons free

scgs girl forced - Fantasies are running wild.

"ugly BCG scar" - Mine was, before it got cut out in Sec 1.

jamie yeo breast

topless cpr scenes - Erm.

church's view on vitiligo - Maybe this is what the ancient Hebrews mistook as "leprosy"

poster named "Temple of Zeus" - wth

buy rgs pinafore photo - Why buy a photo when you can buy the real thing on Yahoo! Auctions?

October 24, 2003 - Wireless Flash

Study Suggests Oprah Winfrey Causes Mental Stress

SEDONA, Ariz. (Wireless Flash) -- If you're stressed to your limits, Oprah Winfrey may be to blame.

According to a new study conducted for a new self-help book, "The Sedona Method" (Sedona Press), 5 percent of Americans claim they are "so stressed they don't know how to cope" -- and half of those people are avid fans of Oprah.

Even more ominous: 76 percent of Oprah fans say their lives are "insufficiently serene" compared to only 66 percent of non-fans.

In addition, Oprah fans are 50 percent more likely to pop pills for anxiety than fans of "Harry Potter."

Hale Dwoskin, who commissioned the study, says more research needs to be done before it can be determined if Oprah causes stress or if her show is simply more appealing to anxious people.
I just posted the following on someone's comments box, regarding an accident he had. Besides its original context, I think it is also a very valid rebuttal (with some changes, of course) to those who subscribe to the self-deluding New Age theories on how to stay happy and be optimisitc.

As usual, those who are easily offended should continue no further.

"Sorry to spoil your reverie, but I would like to point out that regardless what happens, many Christians will thank their god.

If they are uninjured - Praise be to God! I am uninjured! It's a miracle!

If they are slightly injured - Praise be to God! I am barely scratched! He's watching over me!

If they are injured - Praise be to God! I am injured, yet since I have faith in him, I have come out stronger. Hallelujah!

If they are badly injured - Praise be to God! This is a caution to me, to tell me not to be so careless next time. Thank you God for protecting me from death this time. I will take better care of myself next time.

If they are crippled for life - Praise be to God! Though I am crippled in body, I am whole in spirit. I will strive to extol him and glorify his name further. I will serve as a testament to his mercy and grace.

If they die - [Said by others] Praise be to God! He has taken xxx to his side, and saved him the torments of his life. His time was up, so he was taken according to God's plan. Amen.

Sounds like a no-lose proposition, don't it?"

Addendum (25/11):

Some responses I got on the forum where I posted the above:

"Christians have always been the masters of rationization.Sometimes it borders on creative genius.If the explanation has the slightest bit of plausability,they're satisfied with it.They could flip a coin and pray that it turns up heads.If it does,praise God!A clear demonstration that God is with us.If it's tails,it's God's will and someday we'll understand.Then if there's the slightest positive result of it being tails,it proves that God,in his wisdom,knew what He was doing the whole time!"

"I love how God can never be the bad guy. There's always some reason why God will is always the right way. If some guy gets crushed by a steamroller, there's some mumbo jumbo about how God had a plan for him or some shit like that.
I always wonder what the rationalization is for people who agonize over diabetes or bone marrow cancer, who agonize for prolonged periods of time before they finally called by God."

Sunday, November 23, 2003

Turn Left - Make Your Own Conspiracy Theory (Conservative Version) - Reminiscent of Mad Magazine's "make up your own song lyrics" features

BBC's HARDtalk interview Singapore's PM Goh - Hard grilling indeed.

ABC - New home of that ABC flash I was talking about some time back. A new, great, fun way to learn your alphabet, set to a familiar tune!

Attraction and the Persistence of Selective Reading - Study on Internet dating

Soppy Taiwanese Flash Love Stories - Inexplicably popular in camp right now

The Cross In Space - Some Fundie Wackos are putting a cross in space. When I make my first trillion I will send up a Ba Gua (those eight sided mirrors) to join it.

Subtly Simpsons - A list of lines from The Simpsons that the editors have found to be particularly witty, often with their humor derived from subtleties of language, esoteric allusions, or just plain wit.

"Bart: Why the crap do we have to go to church anyway?
Marge: You just answered your own question with that commode mouth. Besides, you kids need to learn morals and decency and how to love your fellow man.
[in church]
Lovejoy: And with flaming swords, the Aromites did pierce the eyes of their fellow men and did feast on what flowed forth. Among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh...
Episode: 2F04, Bart's Girlfriend"

"Lionel Huntz tells Homer: "This is the greatest case of False Advertising I've seen since I sued the movie The Never Ending Story
Episode: Homer at the All-you-can-eat restaurant"

"Sideshow Bob: Hah! Attempted murder? Now honestly, what is that? Do they give a Nobel prize for attempted chemistry? Do they?
Episode: 2F02, Sideshow Bob Roberts"

"Burns: Oh, meltdown. It's one of those annoying buzzwords. We prefer to call it an unrequested fission surplus.
Episode: 8F04, Homer Defined"

I am 43% Internet Addict

I could go either way. Deep into the madness of nights filled with coding CGI-Scripts and online role playing games, or I could become a normal user. Good luck!

Take the Internet Addict Test at fuali.com

Wah so little. Even Screwed Up Girl got more than 50%.

Quote of the Day:

It is a good thing for an uneducated man to read a book of quotations. - Winston Churchill
My brother in law related to me an exchange he had with a SAF Officer about how people in the SAF do things without thinking.

Apparently someone had been talking to some of them (the military men, not chao corporals like Hwa) and told them about the time he had visited the Supply and Transport Training School (STTS). He noticed that 3 tonner drivers were taught to start their vehicles in second gear, and finding that odd, asked the people there why. They replied that they didn't know, and taught it for it had always been done that way (typical).

He asked them to check it out, and after extensive tracing, they managed to grab hold of the first STTS Encik, who said that the first 3 tonner models were lousy, and he'd found they started with more power on second gear. Of course, this is no longer relevant, but the good ole SAF continues this practice mindlessly.

My brother in law replied that in the Army, they're too concerned with making NSFs eat breakfast to think, and told him about my CSM's scheme to make us eat our meals. The Officer laughed.
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