Tuesday, July 31, 2007
posted by PabloPabla at 2:59 pm

Firstly, for the sake of this post, let me confine the definition of job-hoppers to those who switch jobs in less than 18 months. I am pretty sure you would have encountered some of these people or have heard about such practices or perhaps, you are one of them!?! Frankly, honestly and with much confession, I don't have much regard for these people.

Seriously, if you are an employer, will you employ a job-hopper which fits the above definition? I know I would be very reluctant to. One of the most common reasons for job hopping is the lure of a better salary or position elsewhere. Or perhaps, the candidate could not fit into the working culture in the previous company.

Now, as an employer, what assurance can I possibly get from this candidate that he / she would not be lured to a higher paying job elsewhere? What assurance can I get from this candidate that he / she would try her utmost best to assimilate with my company's working culture? If I am going to invest into this employee, I need some assurances but the track record might show otherwise.

Granted, there are cases where the employers have ill-treated their employees (over worked, ridiculously low pay compared to the market) beyond the norm and these employees had better searched elsewhere before they lose their sanity. That, I am prepared to accept. Then there are the cases where these employees are victims of discrimination within the company. Finding another working place with equal opportunities would be a practical solution. But job-hopping because of better pay does not really earn one any credits in the "loyalty" department.

Before some of you get misunderstood, I am talking about habitual job-hoppers. Yes, there are some who would be changing jobs every year or so. Somehow, the topic of conversation with these people would be "So, which company are you with now?". You get the drift. You will need to throw away their name cards every now and then because it would be a name card of a previous company that you are holding. So, no point keeping their name cards.

Blame me perhaps for having the idealistic loyal employee character, who is willing to stake out for the employer in good and bad times. I suppose it is also due to my belief that for as long as I am paid reasonably well to afford my current lifestyle and still having time for family, I am thankful. I am thankful that I have a job. I am thankful that God has given me understanding employers throughout my working life (be it part time jobs or full time jobs).

I always think that working life is a relationship. It is a relationship which you cultivate with your employer / employee and colleagues. Afterall, we spend a majority of our waking hours at work and interact with them daily. If at the end of the day, working means job hopping to the next higher paying opportunity, then perhaps, you may be missing out one of the bigger points in life which is to cultivate meaningful relationships with people.


Monday, July 30, 2007
posted by PabloPabla at 12:10 pm

I did the unthinkable. I bought tickets for the 12.20pm show on Saturday. Nice seats in a new cinema (air-conditioning was wintry, I must say). All excited. Pop corn in hand (first time buying pop corn for a movie) and tiny fingers in tow as I brought my daughter to watch Transformers.

It's her first cinema movie watching experience, and my first since watching Jet Li's last kung fu movie. She was asking lots of questions and seemed excited. The trailers started and she seemed absorbed into the screenshots. I asked if she's okay and she nodded to show she's alright. "Popcorn?". She signalled that she does not want any. Odd, I must say. She loves pop corn. Perhaps she's too absorbed with the scenes on the screen.

Optimus Prime started the opening narrative and my heart started beating. It has been a long time since I heard the familiar voice of Prime, my childhood hero with a host of other Autobots. Those were the days when I watched reruns of Transformers : The Movie over and over again on the old faithful video cassette player. After a while, I asked if my daughter if she would like to seat on my lap since it was quite cold in there. The jacket she was wearing might not be sufficient and perhaps daddy's warmth might help. She hopped over.

As I was engrossed onto Bumblebee starting its own engine, she turned around and said "Papa, I want to go home already". Eh? "Papa, I want to go home".

"You don't want to watch? Are you scared or something? Why don't you try sleeping instead? I pow pow (hug) you instead?". She said "No. I want to go home".

Sigh....I was reluctant, but there's no other choice. So, with popcorn in one hand and carrying her in the other hand, we left the cinema. She doesn't look at all affected by her experience after that as we continued celebrating her birthday with a dinner with my parents and had an ice-cream cake after that. She excitedly told her grandparents that she went to watch "Transformers". Me? I wasn't that much excited. Potong stim only. I think I was sulking like a big kid.

Ah well, just one of those things which you must expect when you have kids. Now, I just hope the movie is still screening this weekend. I want to watch Transformers!!!!


Tuesday, July 24, 2007
posted by PabloPabla at 2:59 pm

Jetstar Airways of Australia has just released its special promotional ticket of RM88.00 from Kuala Lumpur to Sydney for the period of travel Sept 9-20 this year and Feb 3-28 next year provided you make your booking and purchase between NOW and 10pm tomorrow (Wed, July 25th). Of course, you will still have to factor in the surcharges, fees and taxes for a grand total of RM471.26, which is still not too bad.

Now international flying from Malaysia is getting more exciting. I can't wait for AirAsia-X long haul to start operations. If you want to be amongst the first to find out their anticipated jaw-dropping deals when they start flying, register with them here.


posted by PabloPabla at 2:24 pm

Adultery on the rise as women look for 'love' and Man finds out wife, not daughter, having affair are two latest news feeds I read these 2 days. I am not the least surprised with the current "trend" of happening in the world of marriage. As a lawyer, I have encountered many divorce cases wherein the marriage broke down due to a cheating partner - sometimes both. An enquiry or visit to the High Court would show the high number of divorce petitions being heard daily, which is a sad state of affairs, if you ask me.

More often than not, one party will blame the other for ruining the marriage. "My husband cheated me by having an affair with that woman". So, we file a petition for divorce. The husband retaliates by filing an affidavit in opposition stating that "my wife had an adulterous affair with xyz". I tell you, as a lawyer, sometimes you get surprised by facts which your client did not reveal to you up front! When confronted, the client will admit that she had committed adultery "but that was because he did it first. If he can do it, why can't I?". The blame is shifted to the husband.

Well, true...the husband may have committed the one of the gravest sin of adultery and ought to face the consequences of his action. But for the wife (or vice versa) to also commit adultery in retaliation makes the wife (or vice versa) as much guilty as the husband. As far as God is concerned, retaliating by committing a sin which is strictly prohibited is no different from the first perpetrator. Both are as guilty as charged.


posted by PabloPabla at 1:49 pm

Owning a house can be a very enlightening experience. Prior to owning a house, I didn't expect the amount of money that I would need to fork out to make a brand new house complete. For buyers of new houses i.e. houses which you buy from developers, what you get is a house minus the fittings. And that means minus the lighting, grilles, curtains / blinds, cabinets, etc - unless some are thrown in as part of the purchase deal.

We bought an apartment and had approximately 11 lighting points. Naturally, we would want to have decent looking lamps to match the furniture that we have at home. I don't want a cheap looking single flourescent tube to light up the living room after spending a few thousand on the living room furniture. It just does not look right. So, we had to do some serious shopping and shopping we did. I think my wife and I visited no less than 8 lighting shops around town.

We saw some really fancy ones not unlike fine art lamps or hinckley lighting but found them a bit too elaborate. Nice but they don't blend with the furnishing we had in mind. Finally, we settled on lamps from one of the better known chain of lighting shops in Malaysia (which has since closed down actually) and spent approximately one grand on 11 pieces of lighting points. I never knew lighting could be so expensive! I will think twice about staying on a landed double-storey house which probably comes with 20 to 30 lighting points!

Sponsored by Farrey's


Monday, July 23, 2007
posted by PabloPabla at 4:16 pm

The recent news on approximately 170 school girls being forced to dunk themselves in a fish pond has brought much attention on the appropriateness or rather, disproportionate and humiliating punishment meted out by the school warden on the school girls. According to the warden, some girls have repeatedly thrown their used sanitary pads into the toilet bowls of the school's toilet thus clogging them. Warnings given were not heeded and thus, the controversial punishment. The school warden's action is now under investigation by the Sibu divisional education office and there are even calls for the warden's dismissal.

Granted, I don't think for a moment that the punishment meted out is fair or just as innocent girls are being punished together with the real culprits. It is better for a culprit to go scot free than to punish an innocent person for something which the latter did not do. And the manner of the punishment is most humiliating in my opinion. There could be better ways to do it - in consultation with the Parent - Teacher Association. I mean, if the toilets are constantly clogged due to girls throwing their used sanitary pads into the toilet bowls, the parents ought to be informed and a solution should be discussed to overcome this.

Which brings me to this post. What do you throw down the toilet bowl? Toilet paper? Tissue? Used sanitary pads? Cigarette butts? Plastic wraps? Your shoes? An enquiry with a friendly plumber can reveal insights into what is found in clogged toilets. Which then brings me to the next question - what do parents teach their children about toilet habits?

I remember when I was young, my parents educated me on the do's and don'ts of using a toilet especially on what goes into the toilet bowl. I am sure it is also to ensure that I don't start throwing junk (apart from my natural waste) into the toilet bowl and thus, clogging it up and make dad spend money on repairs. Aim properly. Flush after use. Only tissues and toilet paper can be thrown into toilet bowls. Newspapers and magazines are no-nos. And so, what I have been taught stayed with me throughout my growing years and I will definitely teach my children the same things.

Tell me parents, do you tell your daughters not to throw their used sanitary pads into toilet bowls? And if they did, would you not be angry or annoyed? Who wouldn't? Even the next user who needs to answer nature's call would be pissed off (pun intended) at the sight of a pond in the toilet cubicle.

Malaysians are notoriously known for their bad toilet habits. Somehow, a visit to a public toilet (save perhaps to the 5-star hotels) are anticipated with visions of broken taps and flushes, wet floors, offensive smell etc. Schools are not spared. And this really boils down on education, which should start from home. Toilet education is not for teachers alone. Parents must take responsibility as well.

I hope that at the end of the investigation into the actions of the school warden above, a thorough investigation is also made to find out the culprits responsible for clogging up the school's toilet with used sanitary pads. Otherwise, we will all be missing the point on this issue.


Monday, July 16, 2007
posted by PabloPabla at 4:33 pm

I am kinda worried. I have not heard from Daryl of How to Earn Money Blogging aka author of MyList aka Clinke Bidding Directory aka Daryl's Discovery aka How to Make aka Authentic Malaysian Cuisine aka World of Warcraft Tips. Have you?

He hasn't blogged for a couple of weeks now (which is strange) but that is not all. My email to him has not been replied and same goes for my sms and phone calls. The phone rang but no one picked it up. I also did not see him around (he lives in the same apartment scheme as I do). I hope he's okay and I hope this post will not cause anything embarassing.

It is strange that he just went silent all of a sudden. I didn't hear from him that he was going overseas or the like. Even if he did, he should have access to Gmail or something. Anybody got any idea where he is?

I know I risk an earful from him if he finds out I've posted this (which may lead to the blogosphere calling out for him) but I am prepared to face his ear bashing. I want Daryl back!!! He's my friend!!!


posted by PabloPabla at 3:53 pm

Now is a new chance for you to make money - provided you sing in the bathroom and live in India. Apparently, an Indian television channel is looking for good bathroom singers in its new reality show "Bathroom Singer". Wow! Talk about reality shows and what these guys can think of!

Anyway, do you sing in the bathroom? I used to. Before I was married, I think. Or probably before I started working. Come to think of it, I don't know why I have stopped singing in the bathroom - or perhaps, reduced the regularity of showing my vocal prowess there. The funny thing is, why do many people sing whilst in the bathroom - especially when having a shower or bath? Could it be due to a sense of happiness and joy as they scrub their scum away that led them to want to sing their favourite tunes? I mean, one would be more likely to sing whilst taking a shower than say, when scrubbing the week's laundry. Even some television advertisements show a guy singing whilst taking a shower! And singing whilst taking a shower also beats singing whilst driving as most of the time, singing whilst driving is probably aided by what's on radio.

Do you sing whilst taking a shower? Why? Anybody done a study out there?


posted by PabloPabla at 9:49 am

I've been slightly stressed out lately. And I think I know why. It has got to be my unfinished minutes. I've been attending and chairing a couple of meetings lately and most of the time, I get the unenviable job of taking down the minutes. I don't know why but somehow, I get appointed to be the secretary for the day. Perhaps it is due to a perception that lawyers are good with taking minutes. But hey, lawyers are not secretaries by nature.

And so, with minutes piling up and datelines looming, I just could not get the peace needed knowing that there are no pending jobs. But then again, these are God related work. It is not part of my vocational duty but part of work in God's kingdom. Do I say "no" the next time the Chairman suggest that I take down the minutes? Am I deem to be saying "no" to God? Especially when no one else seem to want to take up the work of noting the minutes?

I have prayed for a computer and now I have a computer at home. I told God that I needed a computer so that I can finish up all these work that needs word processing. Am I running away from God? It really is not easy to serve in God's kingdom. But then again, what makes God's kingdom different from the world? Are we to distinguish between God's kingdom and the world so much so that when we serve in God's kingdom, we are "nicer" and more "obliged" kind of person whereas when we are working out there in our vocational jobs, we can be less helpful, mean and cruel?

I don't want to be a hypocrite. I don't want to be a "nice" person whilst serving in Church and amongst God's people and be not so nice when I am at work. I don't want people to see me as a hypocrite. But it is not easy. The narrow path is difficult indeed. And it requires lots of searching.


Monday, July 09, 2007
posted by PabloPabla at 4:33 pm

I don't know what's happening but I can't get my hands to deal with my wordpress blogs properly. My Delicious Asian Food blog is acting cranky and I can't log into the dashboard. It feels rather helpless being unable to do anything about it. I've sent an email to my kind host and hoping that he'll look into it.

For now, my solace is in Blogspot here. But hey, I've got work to do. So, I better go get some work done. Cheerios!


Friday, July 06, 2007
posted by PabloPabla at 12:20 pm

Petaling Street is known to be Kuala Lumpur's Chinatown. The real Petaling Street with people walking and traders hawking. Not the cyber reality Petaling Street where bloggers ping their posts. I was there yesterday evening as I needed to grab a quick dinner before my meeting in Church. I go there, perhaps once a month in recent years due to my involvement in Church activities.

Anyway, I settled myself for a plate of Char Siew Rice sold by a road side hawker situated outside a stationery shop. When I mentioned Char Siew Rice, I mean Char Siew Rice. Just Char Siew (barbecued pork) and rice. Oh, perhaps I should give mention to that one sad piece of sliced cucumber which found its way into the plate of rice. Must be lonely indeed to be in the midst of char siew and rice in the face of a voracious eater.

Prior to digging into the plate of Char Siew Rice, I was wondering what language I should speak. Well, most, if not all Char Siew Rice hawkers in Kuala Lumpur are of Chinese origin. So, speaking one of the Chinese dialects is the natural way of communication. The lady behind the stall who's busy chopping and slicing the various barbequed meat is too busy to listen to my order. And just before I reached the stall, I could hear her shouting impatiently at her helper to send a couple of plates of rice to a waiting table. What stood between me and her was a man. Her helper. He is tanned. He does not look Chinese. Neither is he a Malay. He is not an Indian in any way. He looks Myanmarese. Or is he Vietnamese? I don't think he is an Indonesian. So, what I did was I just tried my luck and praying I would not irritate or distract the lady, I mouthed my order for a plate of Char Siew Rice.

As I sat down waiting for my plate of rice to arrive, a visual assessment of my surroundings show that this lady employs non-Malaysian helpers. They all spoke in a slang which was foreign to me. There were at least 5 helpers around. A walk into Petaling Street later for a cup of overpriced Air Mata Kuching further alarmed me to the number of foreign workers employed by stall holders to peddle their goods - from fake branded watches to bags to clothings. They were haggling with customers (mainly tourists), all in a non-Malaysian accent. I felt as if I was suddenly transported out of the country to a foreign land. The Petaling Street I once knew as Chinatown is now no more than South East Asian Town. You can extend it a bit to South Asia as well if you add the number of workers whom I believe are from Bangladesh.

Anyway, pardon my digression. Back to my plate of Char Siew Rice. For a meal on a plastic stool, served on a plastic plate with slightly crooked and oily fork and spoon on a slightly rickety plastic table, I had to pay RM4.50. Not cheap by any standards. Definitely too expensive in my opinion. But then again, I was served by foreigners, wasn't I? Perhaps that was the price which I needed to pay. Bah!


Thursday, July 05, 2007
posted by PabloPabla at 2:53 pm

Prior to the civil suits filed by The New Straits Times Press (Malaysia) Berhad, Kalimullah bin Masheerul Hassan, Hishamuddin bin Aun and Brenden John a/l John Pereira against Jeff Ooi and Ahiruddin Atan (Rocky's Bru) for defamation, Malaysian bloggers generally threw caution to the wind and did not consider the issue of defamation whilst posting in their blogs. Following the filing of the case (the case of which is still pending disposal in Court), many parties have given their views on the freedom of expression and guarding against defamatory remarks through cyberspace.

There is no doubt that the cyberspace provides an interesting debate on issues of publication of alleged defamatory remarks, jurisdiction of Courts as well as whether there actually is total freedom of expression in this Court. It is thus to the benefit of the Malaysian public that the Kuala Lumpur Bar Committee has been able to secure the agreement of Dr. Venkat Iyer, a Senior Lecturer in the School of Law, University of Ulster to give a half-day seminar on Defamation in Cyberspace.

The distinguished Dr. Venkat Iyer comes with impressive credentials. He has previously worked in the Legal Office of Amnesty International in London and has carried out special projects for a number of international NGOs. A Barrister by training, Dr. Iyer's research interests encompasses the areas of constitutional law, media law and human rights.

The seminar will be held on the 14th July, 2007 and full details with registration form is available here. This seminar is open to the public and bloggers are encouraged to attend. It would be interesting to get a legal perspective from the eminent Dr. Iyer on what he defines by defamation in cyberspace.


Tuesday, July 03, 2007
posted by PabloPabla at 3:08 pm

Seriously, how many posts have been made on Transformers and pinged to Petaling Street over the past week? I have lost count already. I did not read any of them. I have not watched the movie and I don't intend to read any of the posts, be it a review of any kind. I want to spend my money and either get a back-to-childhood experience or start cursing and demanding my money back (er, I think I will just ask for money back. Cursing not good wor!).

As I have mentioned in my previous posting, sometimes too much of one thing (whichever way you put it) is an overdose. The first post on Transformers might draw the most attention. The second will probably give more to those who read the 1st post or bring consolation to those who missed out the 1st. But the 10th and so on posts on the same subject matter - you can review it one way or another but it will still be the same thing one way or another is a killjoy. Not many people would bother to read it (unless your statistics prove otherwise). Likewise, posts on money making.

What I realised about the world of blogging (and reading blogs) is this - news travel at a blinding speed on blogosphere and the first couple of posts on the same subject will always get the most readers. The rest would probably just manage to get a cursory glance at a reader who is merely browsing through. That alone, would not sustain or increase readership. Frankly speaking, how many posts on the same subject matter are you willing to read? How many Transformers post are you willing to read? How many posts on Google Adsense are you willing to read?

Thankfully, this is not another Transformers post, though it has its origin and idea in disguise.

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Monday, July 02, 2007
posted by PabloPabla at 3:25 pm

"Maam, I am going out to get some groceries. Is there a curfew? Do I need to get back by certain time?" I asked the porter. I had just checked into my university accommodation and was going out with my fellow coursemates to get some household essentials considering we just arrived in Leicester, UK. I had to get beddings (no, I didn't bring my pillow on the 13 hour flight from KL), pails (I need to wash), bla, bla, bla. You know-lah, the sort of things which you need to start afresh in a place miles away from home.

Coming from staying at a hostel in a private college in Kuala Lumpur where there was a curfew (you need to be back by 11pm failing which the gates would be LOCKED!) unless you obtained a prior written consent from the warden, I was a little apprehensive about the requirements in the university.

The porter looked up from her desk, gazed at me with a puzzled look as if I've been in some form of imprisonment all these while, and said "No love. We don't have curfews here. You can do anything you like and come back anytime you want. You don't even have to tell me what you want to do. Just don't do anything illegal" with a wink.

Woohoo! Freedom! I am finally being treated as an adult! I wonder what about our 40,000 or so fresh undergraduates who'd just registered themselves into our local universities. Got curfew or not?