Friday, 29 February 2008

SHRIEK moment #2

So the repair dudes came over to fix the ceiling and leaky roof today. Yay. But then something else odd happened while I was opening the gate at the end of my driveway. It so happens that it can never stay open on its own, so what we usually do is prop a brick under it to wedge it open. Now, today, by some strange inexplicable twist, I kicked the brick aside to pull the gate back closed, and I don't know how it happened, but the brick must've twisted at an angle where it acted as a fulcrum upon the heavy metal gate, thereupon actually lifting it off its hinges and nearly sending the whole thing toppling upon me. Good lord. Fortunately I caught it and managed to just only hold it up and prop it against the wall. But good heavens, what were the odds of a little red brick angling itself to act as leverage against the bottom of the gate??? Shizz.

Anyway, we're waiting for the workmen who fixed the leaky roof to come and help put it back, because the gate's too darn heavy for my mom and me (bad back reminder, arghle). So right now it's just leaning at an angle, catching the eyes of passersby, including a couple of security dudes on a motorbike who usually patrol the neighbourhood, who slowed down and pointed at it curiously. I had to tell 'em to move on, move on, nothing to see here, not a break-in, just a... strange... mishap. Oy vey.

Elsewhere, my laptop will take a week to fix, give or take. If it's even fixable to begin with. And this computer is so bloody slow that I'm typing about twenty words ahead of what's appearing on screen. I still owe some church music to my friend's folks in Singaypore (error intentional), and so it looks like I'm going to have to do the unthinkable in this day and age of computer technology: write the music by hand. ARF. I'm being facetious of course. The best composers still do it manually. Of course. ;)

Well, I leave you now with some nice photos of my ceiling and the front gate. Hope they come to paint the ceiling boards soon. My studio gear is still waiting to burst out of their boxes...

Ceiling.

Gate. You'd be lost without these captions, wouldn't you...?

Wednesday, 27 February 2008

SHRIEK Moment

Heh. Following my totally enthusiastic post earlier, it began to storm, and I was in the office at the time; I waited for the weather to get better, drove home, opened my room door... and smelled something plastic-y and burning. So I looked around and realised, much to my horror, that a ceiling board had given way and rainwater had come in through the roof and through the ceiling and right .... onto... my... laptop.

Osh kosh bgosh. See my face on the right??
That's how I looked like.
My flabber had never been so gasted.

It's fried. Well, it's drowned. Tomorrow I'm off to get as much of it fixed as I can. I'm saddened, of course, but it shan't bum me out. Just a spanner in the works. It's been fried before. Sure, I needed to work on the Easter stuff for Singapore, which would've ideally required the computer, but I'll make do. Pity this current system (desktop in the living room) is so crappily SLOW. I can't even run MSN messenger while this browser is open. Oy vey.

Anyway, so that's the way it goes. Ups and downs. Oh, here's another up: my NEW TOY has arrived!!!! Whoohoooo! Four huge boxes in the living room (yup, four), taking up space and scaring the bejesus out of my doggy. Can't wait to put it all together. Except I'm going to have to wait until the contractor comes over tomorrow to fix the roof and fix the ceiling, which is going to result in dust and dirt all over the place. Grr. Arrgh.

So that's that. Will keep you folks updated. Until then, g'nite! ;)

Falling..... Into Place

Hello all! Whooohoo big developments happening. One of my mates, Chris, has taken on the role of resident director at the Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre, and it now looks like I've got a full year of musical projects ahead of me. Here's the rundown on what's being planned: a workshop production mid-year of my musical-in-progress The Edge with the aim of an early 2009 staging proper; the scoring of a production of A Christmas Carol in December; and, in a moment of pure coincidence, the inclusion of some of my musicalised Sonnets (by Shakespeare, performed in song form back in Perth in 2003/04) in a new project also scheduled for mid-year. This last development was an intriguing one: just for fun I let Chris hear some of the demos of the Sonnets I'd recorded. He freaked out. Like, totally went "OMG". And then he pointed to his schedule, and it said: Project - Shakespeare's Sonnets. The synchronicity of that was quite enthralling. Serendipity. Ooo big vocabulary.

While all this is happening, there's an Easter project due for a church in Singapore within this next week (that's a messily-phrased sentence, sorry folks). I've two songs to compose for this MediaCorp TV show (should be interesting), due to air in August. There's a CD project with this dude in Denver, Colorado (yup), as well as a song competition with this dude in Sydney (yay!). And that's not including the run-in with my old art teacher from Penang who now runs an ad agency and who asked if I write jingles. Wow. Overcommitted much, Nick??? (Nah, I should be all right. Once I figure out what to do with the full-time job.)

I've been setting up my home office/studio thingy. A new toy will arrive tonight, God willing, which will significantly boost my musical capability (more when it happens!) Yesterday I went furniture shopping to get a proper work swivel chair and some new shelves, yay! Have been rearranging the furniture about in my room, which doesn't help my back, arf arf, but it's really exciting regardless.

So yes, it's all happening folks. The starting up of what I hope will eventually be my own music production business. None of these can promise me a steady income at this stage, but all these are opportunities that have opened up to me to grant me some (if not a lot) of exposure. Like my dear friend Judi says, I should underpromise and overdeliver, so that's what I shall aim to do. I'm going to remain optimistic and organised with all of these, and God willing it will all work out. Stay tuned for updates ok?? And thanks to everybody for their support. ~nick x

Monday, 25 February 2008

Random Whinge

It's 305 on a Monday morning and I've just come home from the office, having been there since 2pm Sunday.

SIGH.

I'm off to bed.

Wednesday, 20 February 2008

Doing My Head In

Hi all. Whew, has life gotten complicated lately. I'm reconsidering my career path and while I'm likely to remain in the journalism field in some way, there've been opportunities coming up music-wise that are making me question this full-time job with the mag. At the same time, these music opportunities can't guarantee a steady income (or income, period, in the early stages at least). What to do, what to do? Stick in a job I'm not fully feeling fulfilled by just to get the money (which many of you would say YES to, I'm sure, oy), or take a chance now to explore my options and make decisions based on how things go (i.e. get out of the full-time gig and focus on smaller, more satisfying tasks)??

What to do, what to do?

One day at a time, Sweet Jesus. One day at a time.

Saturday, 16 February 2008

Okay, So I'm Bored...

...still, why ain't more people watching Supernatural?? All right, so it's a scary show (on occasion)... but the complexity of plot and the depth of these characters makes it one of the finest shows on television. Check out the trailers for the latest four episodes (from oldest to newest). Okay, the first two don't tell you very much, but the third episode on the list has to be one of my favourite so far (just saw it last night - riveting and unsettling)... and the last one looks awesome!!







Friday, 15 February 2008

I Don't Know About You...


...but there's something unsettling about the post-apocalypse US flag in Jericho. The nutty fan-rescued season two is airing now! YAY!

Tuesday, 12 February 2008

Penang Pics!

Me and Becky

Me with Becky and Jo (and beer)

See what all that beer does to you?!

With Jo and Becky at Starbucks... and oh lookee, it's my brother!

Well This Is Interesting...

Can you read the following message?


Well, squint until your eyes are about 90% closed.

Kinda cool no?

Heh. Simple things... ;))

Monday, 11 February 2008

Good Times

Oh yea. Friday night was fun. Went out late - circa 1130pm - and met up with old friends (hi Jo! hi Becky! hi Alisa! hi Mei Ling!) and friends from high school, some of whom I've not seen in a while. Caught up over beers, laughed, joked, had a great time, then went for mee goreng at the nearby mamak before I headed back to the Club. The following night, caught up with Jo and Becky again at Starbucks (where else?), which was heaps of fun too. Yay! Pity I don't have any pics of the goings-on but I'll try to steal 'em off somebody real soon. Okay that's all for now. Till later - bye!

Grr. Stoopid. Irritating. Wireless. Connection!

Yo all. Just a quick update. Back home after a long drive on Saturday night. Was too tired out to go out and update my blog then, arf arf, so I stayed home. Yesterday was not terribly eventful either... worked on a work assignment, tried to fix the wireless connection at home which still isn't connecting, dammit!!, and basically slept way too much, arf. Oh well.

Right now I'm in the office on my lappietop and testing the ethernet connection (which might not have any to do with the wireless, I realise)... it's just that back home, when even though the home PC can connect to the net, my laptop can't even when I use the ethernet connection. In other words, when I disconnect the little blue cable from the back of the PC, stick it into my laptop ethernet card, it still won't connect to the Net, even though the PC does. Which is totally odd. But right now I've configured the lappie to the office ethernet systemthingymajiggy and it's working fine. Which indicates a problem somewhere with my household connection, I reckon. I don't know. I'm confused. I'm hungry. Time for lunch, arf arf. Byebye for now! More updates soon - though I'm not sure this really qualifies as one! :)

Thursday, 7 February 2008

Chinese New Year Comes Around Again

Yo all. Guess where I am?! Haha! Let's put it this way: there's a cup of coffee on the table, and there's a free wireless internet connection, which is pretty much all I need. Well, today's the first day of the Chinese New Year, so... y'know... HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! Yesterday my bro and I checked out of the Club and headed up to Balik Pulau, which is up a hill, and spent the day at my grandparents' house with relatives both close and not-so-close. Dinnertime went over to my aunt's place where again we spent dinner with relatives both close and not-so-close. My paternal grandma was there, and for the most part she was in a great mood. But poor grandma suffers from an advanced case of amnesia, so she doesn't remember people, events, details, dates. When I greeted her she asked me, 'Do you know who I am?' I said yes, and she said, 'Do I know you? Have I known you for a long time?' Since I was born, Grandma, I replied. It was really quite sad.

Anyway so that was that. Later my bro and I went a-driving where we had coffees until 1:30am before heading back to materal grandfolks' place to spend the night. Today, we had lunch, greeted everybody with Happy New Years, lingered a bit and then headed back to the Club, where bro and I will be spending tonight and tomorrow. All in all, it's not been terribly exciting, and typically I'm feeling a tad under the weather - I blame it on the dust in grandma's home as well as the humid Penang climate, arf arf!

Well, that's about it for now. Might go for drinks with some mates tonight if I'm feeling up to it. Until then... see ya!

Wednesday, 6 February 2008

This Is Gonna Get Interesting...

From Gateworld.net:

Amanda Tapping (Samantha Carter) will guest star in several episodes of Season Five of Stargate Atlantis. A regular during Season Four, Tapping will depart the show for her new SCI FI series Sanctuary (story). She will guest star in "several" episodes of Atlantis Season Five, according to the network, beginning with the season premiere, Search and Rescue.

Actor Robert Picardo will join the cast as Richard Woolsey assumes command of the Atlantis expedition. Says the press release [from Sci-Fi network]: "The team, led by Lt. Colonel Sheppard (Joe Flanigan), Dr. Rodney McKay (David Hewlett), Teyla (Rachel Luttrell), Ronon (Jason Momoa) and Dr. Jennifer Keller (Jewel Staite), must adjust to his unique leadership style."

Backed up by this article from TVguide.com:

He might not be as easy on the eyes as Amanda Tapping, but when Stargate Atlantis starts filming its fifth 20-episode season later this month, Robert Picardo will join the cast on a full-time basis, just as the officious (and heretofore recurring) bureaucrat Richard Woolsey assumes command of the expedition from Tapping's Samantha Carter.

Tapping, whose Web series Sanctuary has been picked up by Sci Fi Channel for a 13-episode run, will appear in several Atlantis eps, as will her SG-1 costar Michael Shanks. Fan fave Paul McGillion (who was literally brought back from the dead by fan demand!) will also return for five shows.

Oh my.

Long Days and Darkest Evenings

So it's 130am and I'm sitting on the patio at Penang Club surfing the net after a long, terrible day of surfing the net, arf arf. Yeah, today's been pretty uneventful too; went off to Gurney Plaza with my bro and hung about there all day, killing about seven hours walking around shopping (bought books!) and, of course, the everpopular Starbucks. Ran into Jo and Alisa there and there was all the hugs and controlled shrieking; then brother and I left and on the way back to the Club we stopped by Kevin and Irinna's to say hi and hung around to watch Most Haunted (have you seen that show? Mindless entertainment of the highest virtue, I swear it is!)

So now I'm on the patio, which is meant to be closed, but the staff saw me and said, "Aiyah just stay lah" and left, meaning I'm literally all alone in the alfresco dining area, within view of a dark swimming pool and the ocean not too far away roaring as the waves rush back and forth against the shore. It's cool and really rather relaxing. If only every work day could be like this, hehehe. Wishful thinking indeed. Meanwhile, it's a little unnerving to be sitting alone with darkness all around you in the distance, right after watching Most Haunted (have you seen that show? Mindless entertainment of the highest virtue, I swear it is!). Eeek, deja vu. Eeek, deja vu.

For those who are interested, here's the book I bought today - the latest by Dean Koontz... and it's got doggies in it! Yay! (Click on the pic for info!)


Okay later today it's off to Grandma and Grandpa's we go!! Bye for now!

Monday, 4 February 2008

Herbal tea latte = grossness

Hello all. 10:30pm and I'm back at this same Starbucks at New World Plaza. There ain't much else to do, sadly, arf arf. But I haven't been here all this time; I went to Penang Club, where my bro and I are spending the night, had dinner, showered, and here we are again. Have sampled two tea lattes now, the black tea latte (which I'm pretty sure is regular tea) and the roobois herbal tea (drinking now, and I don't really like it, icky). Takes another sip. Herbal with milk. Sweet and kinda salty. Blearghle.

On the way here from PJ, during the 3.5-hour journey, we (me and my car Murphy) drove past a jammed road in the opposite direction with all these cars blocked by an eight-wheel trailer that had somehow toppled over onto its side. Go figure. Kinda interesting to drive past an overturned container... you know, those huge metal boxes that they use to ship mechanical parts or cars or sheep or what-have-you. Wish I'd snapped a photo, but eh, what can you do, both hands on the wheel and all that.

Oy, and now all the tea is giving me a tummy ache. Blurble.

La La La

Wow. Two and a half hours in Penang and I'm bored already. Okay, okay, could be because all I've done is sit here at Starbucks surfing the net. But I've only got so many mates here, and they're busy and/or tired, so... it's just me. Meanwhile, two hours in this Starbucks and I've been the only customer. Not exactly a hustly-bustly place, is it?! :P

New World & Tea Latte

Quickie update. Am in Penang. Got here in three and a half hours, much to the horror of my mum, ROFL. Am now at a Starbucks (WOW! I've never done that before!) in New World Park, this newish place across from the former Super Burmah. An interesting walk-in setup of coffeeshops and stores, not unlike those in Perth (the Nick's Place location, not related to yours truly). Penang is, if anything, more packed trafficwise than before. I think it's time they embargo the purchase and entry of cars, like Singapore. After all, it's a freakin' island... it's bound to run out of room!!! Heh.

Anyhoo. Earlier I experimented with my wireless connection in PJ and couldn't connect either, prompting me to think something was wrong with my wireless modem. But here in Penang, it's connecting fine, and fast too. So methink it's a locale-based ISP problem. But that's just mumbo-jumbo for ya. I'm off now, going to surf the net a bit, finish off my tea latte (eek) and then go for a walk I think. If only the roads weren't so polluted, arf. Sadly Penang's losing some of its charm as it develops and progresses, but I still prefer it over KL. Ah well. Life.

Ok bye!

Yay Yay Road Trip

Hey all. Wassup! Grrr, for some reason the wireless connection in my house has died, and so I'm stuck using the home computer, which runs on Windows 2000 and can barely run more than two applications (eg MSN and Internet Explorer) at the same time. Frustrating. It's odd, how the wireless just stopped working. It actually does connect - I mean, I see that little blue screen in the corner and that pop-up balloon saying I'm connected... but then when I try to load a page or connect to MSN, nothing happens. Oy. And I haven't made any changes to the settings. What's going on?? ROFL. I'll speak to my ISP when I get back from Penang. Which reminds me:

In about an hour or so I'm off to Penang on my own, driving all the way, approximately a five-hour journey... so that should be pretty interesting. Or not. This week will be Chinese New Year, which, incidentally, is a festive season I don't enjoy. First off, I always fall sicky during this time. Don't ask me why. Not to be a naysayer, but I sort of predict feeling under the weather this year too, arf. Secondly, it irks me that this is the time of year that relatives who don't keep in touch and who actually backbite one another meet up to laugh, smile and pretend that everything's hunky-dory between one another. What a load of bollocks. And thirdly, this is a time for reunions, yet you'll see my mum and dad sniping at each other and being all cranky. Pfftttt. Who needs it? Okay, okay, call me a cynic. Call me a cy-nick. Call me a silly Nick. I'll try to keep a positive attitude about it. Eventually. :P

I've resumed my apartment search and have found what looks to be a really nice apartment 10 minutes away from here. Will keep you updated on this, but it's looking very promising, heeeeeee!

Anyway, I'm off now... will be on my own because I'd rather have my own car in Penang to get around, and also because I don't wanna be cooped up in the back seat with my folks, my brother, and six million items of luggage, heheh. So I shall bid thee adieu until I get there!! Until then... see ya!!

Friday, 1 February 2008

You Know You Drink Too Much Coffee When...

...you receive a personalised greeting card from the staff of a coffee shop.

Arf arf. Thanks, guys. :P

Click for bigger view!

Click for bigger view