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Friday, August 25, 2006
Shrinking Solar System -vwv

Just as I thought, Pluto is out. We now have only 8 planets in our Solar System.
[update] 26 August 2006
Here's an article: Pluto No Longer A Planet

-- permalink --
Yiheng made
7:48 AM


Any links to an article on that? When was it announced?
By Anonymous Shuquan, at 5:54 PM  

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Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Fly with Tilly -vvx

This is Tilly. She's a beautiful golden eagle I recently saw on TV. So I decided to see if I can find out more about her on the internet and what a surprise, I came across this. This site has videos shot from a camera mounted on Tilly as she soars over the grassy highlands of Scotland. There's even one where she engages in an aerial dogfight with a buzzard.

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Yiheng made
10:45 PM


Whoa! Thats really nice. The grounds kind of remind you of New Zealand's territory. Which made me think about the UAV during ThunderWarrior. Damn sad, maybe if they strapped a camera to a bird would have been a better success. (and cheaper too)
By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:03 PM  

I never thought of it that way but that's so true. The bird is cheaper, less suspicious and clearly flies better. A camera won't be as good as the eagle's eyes though. In the TV program, Tilly spotted the human target in green jacket in the grass more than a mile away!
By Anonymous yiheng, at 5:58 PM  

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Friday, August 18, 2006
There's always something to watch -vvz

It's about time to start looking for another show to catch. The following caught my attention. Anyone else interested please contact me yah.

Carmen by Compañía de Danza Española Aída Gómez (Spain) 14 & 15 Oct 06
It's bold. It's sexy. It's the classic opera Carmen given a spectacular new treatment with flamenco and Spanish classical dance choreographed by award-winning Aída Gómez... link

Opera on Silver Screen 13 & 14 Oct 06
Armageddon, Babe, The Godfather and Superman Returns. What do they have in common? Why, OPERA of course! link

The Fairy's Kiss 3-5 Sep 2006
Be spellbound by an award-winning international cast - the violinist, pianist, artist, and story-teller come together to bring you an evening of fantasy and imagination. link

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Yiheng made
11:52 PM


oh Carmen looks nice to watch. I haven't watched a proper opera in ages since Aida came to Singapore. The Aria recital looks quite good. Haha a colleague was selling the Fairy's Kiss tickets in my office awhile ago. Deadline is over though.
By Anonymous Shuquan, at 5:03 PM  

I've never seen an opera before. I wanted to catch Die Walkure before I left Toronto but I missed the deadline for that. I'm more inclined towards Carmen, so you interested? I don't want to miss the early bird discount.
By Anonymous Yiheng, at 6:12 PM  

go go go!!!!!
By Anonymous jiangzheng, at 11:49 PM  

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Thursday, August 17, 2006
Just how many planets are there?! -vwv

Astronomers have been arguing over whether Pluto and other roundish Kuiper Belt objects should be considered planets for a couple of years now. I've always thought they would eventually drop Pluto from the list of planets considering how small it is and how it looks just like another thing in the Kuiper Belt.

However, according to recent news, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) might decide to include Pluto and some other balls of rock in the list of planets after all.

Personally, I would prefer it if they come up with a more exclusive definition for a planet. If planets can be so small and so common, then they are not cool and awesome any more! When you point to the sky and say "That's Mars", the reply would be "Wow!". Do the same and say "That's 2008UB416, the 37th planet in the Solar System", you are likely to get "Yeah, whatever man".

-- permalink --
Yiheng made
9:31 PM


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Sunday, August 13, 2006
Saturday -vvv vvw

A good day. The late afternoon was cool with a light breeze, excellent weather for a slow 6km jog in the park. On my way home after the run, I saw Wendy, my ex-piano teacher, carrying her daughter who must be in kindergarten by now. I haven't seen her for a while but she looked pretty much the same as she did a decade ago when I was still taking piano lessons. Yeah, she's one of the rarer women who didn't turn into an "auntie" after having children...yet.

In the morning though, I went to the Singapore Expo for the National Library Book Sale with my father. We arrived about ten minutes after opening and we were already about 150 metres from the front of the queue to enter the hall. Of course, some people just got in without queueing amidst the chaos. Shuquan must be quite early since he was inside when I got there.

You really get to see some disgusting people there. Hoarding tonnes of random books and then selecting those that one really wants is one thing but tossing unwanted books carelessly and throwing them on the floor is just unforgivable. I know some books suck but that's no excuse. These people don't even deserve to own books.

The place was extremely packed. I saw a woman manoeuvring through the crowd and pulling her toddler behind her. Poor kid, his head kept knocking into bags and butts and half the time, he's getting stepped on. He was on the verge of crying but his mother just ignored his pleas for help.

A lot of people left with a bag full of books. However, being the slow reader and shopper that I am, I only bought 4 books.

I bought Momo because a close friend told me about it many years ago. It's a fantastical tale about mysterious grey men cheating people of their "time", making cigarettes out of it and smoking it away. Surreal huh? It's written by Ende, the author of The Neverending Story so I consider this a tried-and-tested book. For someone who reads very slowly, it's important that I only get started on books that are mostly tried-and-tested.

A Mathematician Reads The Newspaper is the kind of book I think many people should read but only geeks will be interested in, so there's really no point in justifying my preference here.

As for the Chinese book, I just love artwork in children's books. Actually, I don't recall seeing any artwork in adult fiction, except for the ambigrams in Angels & Demons.

I bought The Once And Future King because Magneto was reading it in his plastic prison and Charles Xavier was talking to his class about it at the end of the movie. I mean, if Professor X uses it in his classes, it's gotta be good, right?

-- permalink --
Yiheng made
1:01 PM


I initially had trouble finding books because the fiction ones were just bad romance novels and non-fic ones were either old travel guides or computer programming textbooks. However I still managed to get some interesting titles...went off with 9 books! Surprisingly most those I took home were non-fic books on business.
By Anonymous Shuquan, at 9:54 PM  

Quite a lot of good fiction ended on the side of the hall where people throw away books that didn't make their "second round" of selection. After the first two hours, most of the can-make-it books migrated to the mountains of books at the sides.
By Anonymous Yiheng, at 9:58 PM  


struck by the cool ambigram on the top of your page!

may we know what it reads exactly: timemaker ngaihung?

sorry if we got it wrong.. ;) buts it's cool just the same!

we design ambigrams too..


By Blogger nagfa, at 8:45 AM  

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Tuesday, August 08, 2006
Random Knowledge 2 -vww

Besides National Day, the earlier part of August has also some historically significant dates, such as my primary school classmate's birthday...just kidding. Two dates come to mind.

1st August - Nurses Day is celebrated in Singapore on this day. I never thought about why this date. A clever guess would be something to do with Nightingale but according to this, it has to do with the day French Nuns started working at the General Hospital at the Sepoy Lines in Singapore.

6th August - Atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima. I just saw a documentary about that 2 days ago. The aftermath of the explosion was horrifying, black radioactive rain and radiation illnesses, scary man.

9th August 1965 - Singapore declared independence on the twentieth anniversary of the Nagasaki bomb.

-- permalink --
Yiheng made
10:41 PM


Yeah I read in the "Today in history" section of the paper about the bombing of Nagasaki on this very day
By Anonymous Shuquan, at 11:25 PM  

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Friday, August 04, 2006
National Day Part 2 -vwv

Here's a nice song. They should make it a National Day theme song one of these years.

Ah, Singapore
by Shonen Knife
from the album Let's Knife

Little girl said chinese dumplings taste so good
And the tourists take pictures of the phoenix all around the town
Singapore, Ah, Singapore...

Many tall skyscrapers standing all in a row
In this Asian country just north of the equator
Ah, Singapore, ah, Singapore...

You can't buy chewing gum anywhere in Singapore
But you can buy peppermint candy 'cause you eat it til it's gone
Singapore, Ah, Singapore...

-- permalink --
Yiheng made
9:31 PM


hahahah nices songs desu..
By Anonymous jiangzheng, at 1:22 AM  

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Look out ol' Mackie is back! -vww

For those of you who are my age, you might remember this TV commercial from the 80s. It was an attempt to sell the Big Mac and didn't turn out very successful. Ironically, there were Mac Tonight toys even though the ad seemed to be targetted at adults.

Nevertheless, Mac Tonight was one of my most memorable McDonald's commercial, due to the catchy tune and the freaky pale crescent head. Or maybe his sunglasses reminded me of Ray Charles.

Imagine my surprise when I saw Mac Tonight back up on the glass panels of the McDonald's at Kovan today, after an absence of more than a decade. It's funny I was just thinking about Mac Tonight earlier this year because I finally found out where the tune came from.

The song that originally carried that melody was called Mack the Knife. While McDonald's modified the lyrics to this,
When the clock strikes/ Half past six babe
It's time to head for/ Golden light
It's a good time/ For the great taste
(Dinner) at Mcdonald's/ It's Mac Tonight!

the ballad of Mack the Knife is actually about a criminal called MacHeath who commits a variety of crimes, including murder. There's actually a long and interesting history behind this song and if you are the patient type, you can read it here.

The popular version by Bobby Darin is a lot less dark and with the upbeat music, you won't really think about the content. It's one of my favourite songs at the moment and the lyrics are as follows. If you like the bloodier version, go here.

Mack The Knife - Bobby Darin version

Oh, the shark, babe, has such teeth, dear
And it shows them pearly white
Just a jackknife has old MacHeath, babe
And he keeps it ... ah ... out of sight.

Ya know when that shark bites, with his teeth, babe
Scarlet billows start to spread
Fancy gloves, though, wears old MacHeath, babe
So there's nevah, nevah a trace of red.

Now on the sidewalk ... uuh, huh ... whoo ... sunny mornin' ... uuh, huh
Lies a body just oozin' life ... eeek!
And someone's sneakin' 'round the corner
Could that someone be Mack the Knife?

A-there's a tugboat ... huh, huh, huh ... down by the river don'tcha know
Where a cement bag's just a'droopin' on down
Oh, that cement is just, it's there for the weight, dear
Five'll get ya ten old Macky's back in town.

Now, d'ja hear 'bout Louie Miller? He disappeared, babe
After drawin' out all his hard-earned cash
And now MacHeath spends just like a sailor
Could it be our boy's done somethin' rash?

Now ... Jenny Diver ... ho, ho ... yeah ... Sukey Tawdry
Ooh ... Miss Lotte Lenya and old Lucy Brown
Oh, the line forms on the right, babe
Now that Macky's back in town.

Aah ... I said Jenny Diver ... whoa ... Sukey Tawdry
Look out to Miss Lotte Lenya and old Lucy Brown
Yes, that line forms on the right, babe
Now that Macky's back in town ...

Look out ... old Macky is back!!

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Yiheng made
6:54 PM


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Previous Posts

Swing Along 2009 -vvv

FF13 -vvx

YGBSM -vvw

Tibetan Song -vvx

Unfortunate Side Effects -vwv

Memorable News -vwv

Five Golden Flowers -vvz

Art Appreciation in Singapore -vvw

Openmindedness -vvx


Current Read


Last Three Books


The Ultimate Encyclopedia of Mythology
Arthur Cotterell, Rachel Storm

Michael Ende

Those Before


Paycheck: And Other Classic Stories By
Philip K. Dick

Mirror Mirror: A Novel
Gregory Maguire

American Gods
Neil Gaiman

Maya 5 Fundamentals
Garry Lewis, Jim Lammers

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
J. K. Rowling