Friday, 25 June 2010

World Cup Fever & My Thoughts

Incidences of World Cup fever:

1) I thought the Middle Eastern guy who sat opposite me in the bus looked like a younger version of Cristiano Ronaldo.

Am I the only one feeling the heat? Drool ... drool ... drool ...
(Pic from the Internet)

2) I was telling my sis that "Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time" was a bloody waste of time and money. My sis smiled and said, "It's Prince of Persia lah, not Prince of Serbia". Gosh, did I say "Prince of Serbia"?! I'm not even a Serbian fan.

Prince of Serbia ... opps ... Prince of Persia was a disappointment.
(Pic from the Internet)

3) I was composing an email to my colleagues and used the word "vuvuzela" in it: "We do not have enough facts to blow our vuvuzela."

Please tell me where can I find a vuvuzela. I've got lots of people to irritate.
(Pic from the Internet)

Having said all that, I'm:

a) ... glad that Italy and France didn't qualify for the last 16. France deserved to lose with all the crap that went on within the squad. And being defending champions, Italy was over confident till it went to their heads.

b) ... happy that South Korea and Japan are in the last 16. Think about it: two big boys, Italy and France didn't make it, but South Korea and Japan did. Even if South Korea and Japan don't make it to the quarter finals, it's still a cause for celebration for Asian football to reach this far! I'm hoping they can kautim Uruguay and Paraguay.

c) ... impressed that the US of A is in the last 16. Again, a country that hardly watches and plays football makes it into the last 16, while countries that eat and sleep football like Italy and France are out. I hope the US will beat Ghana and make it into the quarter finals.

d) ... gonna watch the Portugal vs Brazil match this evening at Hard Rock Cafe. And no, I'm not motivated by the guy at the top of this blogpost, yes the one with the solid abs and big ...

e) ... supporting Germany when they play against England on June 27. I don't know why most Malaysian football fans are huge England supporters. Must be influence from the EPL and because England formerly colonised Malaysia. But the English dogs are playing worst then their mothers and I hope they'll lose against the mighty Germans.

I'm so gonna be eating and sleeping football till it all ends on July 11 when one team finally lifts the cup and have their name written down in football history.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

7 Credit Cards

Ok I admit. I'm one of those who had more than 2 credit cards. In fact, I had a total of 7!

My first credit card was from Maybank. I got it when I first started working and figured that having a credit card is important in an emergency. So I registered for one, and Maybank happily gave me another card which was a Visa.

(Ever wondered why Mastercard must always come together with Visa? But American Express can stand alone? I don't know the answer either.)

After a couple of years and me being a good paymaster, Maybank upgraded my Gold cards to Platinum without cancelling the Gold cards.

My love affair with Maybank continued when they gave me an American Express (Amex). I didn't use at all after a virgin transaction at a Petronas station did not go through. I just kept the card for fun after that failed transaction.

So I've got 5 cards from Maybank - 2 Gold, 2 Platinum and an Amex.

The remaining 2 cards were from HSBC. I signed up for their Visa and Mastercard during a conference because I wanted to get the free pen they were enticing me with :-) The ink in that pen has long dried up but the cards stayed with me long after that.

I only used my HSBC cards whenever necessary. Most of the time I used my Maybank cards cause it takes less points to exchange for gifts in Maybank compared to HSBC. For example, it takes only 9,400 points to exchange for a RM50 Senheng voucher with Maybank, versus 11,000 points to exchange a similar voucher with HSBC.

After the government made the announcement  that we have to pay some stupid service tax of RM100 for each credit card we own, there was one word that came to mind: consolidation.

So at the beginning of this year I started a consolidation exercise.

First, I exchanged all the points I had with HSBC for an Isetan RM50.00 shopping voucher. The voucher is still sitting in my wallet. I'm waiting  for an opportune time to purchase a super feminine dress during the Isetan sales that they organise frequently for its members.

After receiving the Isetan voucher, I called up HSBC to cancel both my cards. I was surprised the lady who attended my call didn't ask me to reconsider keeping my cards. I guess they must have anticipated the sudden increase in people wanting to cancel their cards, especially after the service tax announcement.

Then I called up Maybank and told them to transfer all my balance and Treatpoints from my Gold cards to my Platinum ones before cancelling my Gold cards, as well as my Amex which does not have any balance or points in the first place.

So now I only have 2 credit cards, and I intend to keep it that way.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Songs About Fathers

There are many songs written to capture the emotions of being a father and the relationships we have with our fathers.

Here are some feel good songs about fathers I can think off at the top of my head:

Just the Two of Us - Will Smith
Butterfly Kisses - Bob Carlisle
Father and Son - Cats Stevens (original singer)
My Father's Eyes - Eric Clapton
Song for Dad - Keith Urban
Daddy Cool - Boney M
Dance with My Father - Luther Vandross

If you're not having a good relationship with your dad, they even make you feel guilty bout it with songs like The Living Years by Mike and the Mechanics.

But what about fathers who are not responsible fathers? Fathers who are fathers for the sake of becoming one? Well, they've also got a song for this group of fathers, and it's called Cats in the Cradle by Cat Stevens (original singer). But we all remember the Ugly Kid Joe version, don't we?

Cats in the Cradle

My child arrived just the other day
He came to the world in the usual way
But there were planes to catch and bills to pay
He learned to walk while I was away
And he was talkin' 'fore I knew it, and as he grew
He'd say "I'm gonna be like you dad
You know I'm gonna be like you"

And the cat's in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin' home dad?
I don't know when, but we'll get together then son
You know we'll have a good time then

My son turned ten just the other day
He said, "Thanks for the ball, Dad, come on let's play
Can you teach me to throw", I said "Not today
I got a lot to do", he said, "That's ok"
And he walked away but his smile never dimmed
And said, "I'm gonna be like him, yeah
You know I'm gonna be like him"

And the cat's in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin' home son?
I don't know when, but we'll get together then son
You know we'll have a good time then

Well, he came home from college just the other day
So much like a man I just had to say
"Son, I'm proud of you, can you sit for a while?"
He shook his head and said with a smile
"What I'd really like, Dad, is to borrow the car keys
See you later, can I have them please?"

And the cat's in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin' home son?
I don't know when, but we'll get together then son
You know we'll have a good time then

 I've long since retired, my son's moved away
I called him up just the other day
I said, "I'd like to see you if you don't mind"
He said, "I'd love to, Dad, if I can find the time
You see my new job's a hassle and kids have the flu
But it's sure nice talking to you, Dad
It's been sure nice talking to you"

And as I hung up the phone it occurred to me
He'd grown up just like me
My boy was just like me

And the cat's in the cradle and the silver spoon
Little boy blue and the man on the moon
When you comin' home son?
I don't know when, but we'll get together then son
You know we'll have a good time then

Happy Father's Day to fathers everywhere - good and bad alike, dead and alive.

Friday, 4 June 2010

Three Football Legends, One Louis Vuitton Advert

Take a look at this Louis Vuitton (LV) advert:

Pardon the blur visual. I scanned this from a newspaper advert using the office scanner.

You've got 3 football legends - Diego Maradona, Pele and Zinedine Zidane in one stylish advert.

The advert shows all 3 of them dressed casually and playing foosball in Cafe Maravillas in Madrid, Spain. There are no football connotations at all, except maybe the foosball! But you know who these legends are because they are football itself. And the only indication that it's an LV advert are the LV bags hidden in the background.

I sometimes wonder how does LV connect the greatness of these legendary footballers with fashion. But LV did it brilliantly and I love it.

Don't forget to check out the website too. It has super cool interactive visuals that will knock your socks off, especially if you're a football fan.
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