of the 2005 AAR.

What’s AAR, you ask? Just some term I picked up in a Tom Clancy novel years ago, and something ahlong and I used quite often in our idle kopi sessions last time.

(Anyway, AAR = After Action Review.)

Every year that passes is always filled with change, and this year’s been no different. How’ve the changes been like? I dunno man, this I think I gotta review my entries to be sure. So hold on for a bit while I read back (yeah, I admit to having the occasional bout of forgetfulness at times too) and hmm..

In no particular order, here we go.
First concert ever. Mayday rocks! 🙂

– Experienced my first musical too.

– Thanks to YC’s invitation, watched my first Christmas musical.

– Enjoyed the feel of my first movie out on the Padang. Starlight Cinema’s fun 🙂

Wasted Spent my first ever entire evening at Chinese Garden, taking pictures of the Lantern Festival displays.

First semester of the degree course. So far so good, hrm.

– Started regular gym sessions @ SAFRA w/ XQ.

– Managed to keep in touch with some people, lost track of some others. Can’t really be bothered these days, bah. Tired. Screw everything.

Flunked my driving test (and retests), awaiting renewal of my FT so that I can continue to give more money to the instructor retake my damn test.

– Finally saw an end to the monthly free movies. This sucks.

– Managed to increase my alcoholic tolerance yet again, through regular drinking sessions at XQ’s place.

– Began playing bridge on a regular basis. (Which kinda explains why there’s this cushion of a King of Spades sitting on my bed back home, and no I didn’t buy that.)

– Life being turned topsy-turvy, in some obscure manner. Once again, I reaffirmed the fact that females = trouble.

– Lotsa great times with me kakis 🙂

– A good year for birthday presents; most of the friends hated liked the stuff I bought. *Looks at empty wallet critically*

– Deciding that I shouldn’t waste that much time and effort on others, and should just idle productively on my own stuff. (Idle productively, hmm.. oxymoronic.)

This list’s kinda murky, but whocares. Onwards to 2006 in a few hours’ time 🙂
No clearly defined goals for the coming year, only to better myself with each year that passes.

Happy New Year people 🙂

P.S. And crap, how could I forget this one! The all important . that I received recently. All the best to y’all 🙂 Best news of the season.

of the new books!

I had $30 worth of Kinokuniya book vouchers (thanks to SJ jie for the Christmas present!), 20% discount coupons from the 8days mag, and Knife of Dreams‘s small paperback edition hasn’t been released yet.

So.. I got this.

Neil Gaiman’s American Gods.

I was planning to buy Smoke and Mirrors at first, but nah. Short stories aren’t my type. Between American Gods and Neverwhere, American Gods won out. Next time man, next time round I’ll get ya.

And this.

Memoirs of a Geisha.

Time to read it before the movie comes! I’ve only read like three chapters so far, but it’s an interesting read. I’m trying to slow my pace of reading and try to visualise the various scenes depicted inside. Makes for better appreciation of the book, I think.

New food for the bookworm 🙂 The queue at Kino was horrendous yesterday though, brr. Lucky XQ was around, and he scouted around for the shortest queue.

And I still had a $5 gift voucher from Borders. So hmm.. I got this.

Crying Out Love, in the Centre of the World VCD.

I’d wanted to catch this one the big screen initially, but as usual.. I-couldn’t-find-anyone-to-watch-it-with-me-and-it-went-offscreen-yet-again. Blah. Finally finished watching it in the afternoon, and it’s every bit as good as I expected it to be. Now I regret not buying the DVD version, argh 😦

of free speech?

I’ve always liked reading Diary of A Lucky Singaporean. The articles are always written about how grateful we should be to our government for doing such a wonderful job of running the country; and yet the tone says something else entirely. Sarcasm at its height, if you ask me. And of course it makes for a great read, if nothing else.

This particular post made me take a second look, however. Wow, a ruling against expression of free speech? Hmm, no comments, lest this post be known as incendiary and I get slapped with something from above.

Just something for y’all to read and note eh?

of genesis: a corporate version.

Found this in a mailing list. It’s good 🙂

In the beginning ……….. there was The Plan.

And then came the assumptions.

And the assumptions were without form.

And the Plan was completely without substance.

And darkness fell upon the face of the staff.

And they spoke to their Section Heads saying: “The Plan is a bucket
of crap and it stinks”

And the Section Heads went to their managers and said: “It’s a pail
of dung and none may abide the odour thereof”.

And the Managers went to their regional managers and said to
them: “It is a container of excrement and it is very strong, such
that none here may abide by it”.

And the Regional Managers went to their Directors and said: “It is a
vessel of fertiliser and non may abide by its strength”.

And the Directors went unto the Managing Director and said: “It
contains that which aids growth and is very powerful”.

And the Managing Director went unto the Chief Executive and
said: “It promotes growth and is very powerful”.

And the Chief Executive went unto the Chairman and said: “This
powerful new Plan will actively promote the growth and effeciency of
the company particularly in this area”.

And the Chairman looked upon The Plan and saw it was good.

And The Plan became policy.

of coming home this christmas.

I hadn’t written anything about this previously, due to the lack of pictures. But that little issue has been addressed, so here we go 🙂

Before the performance started. YC, MY and ahkein.

A day before Christmas Eve, I’d attended a Christmas musical at Bethesda Cathedral (titled ‘Coming Home’) at the invitation of an old friend. And the performance was really good, I could see the effort behind the entire thing. A musical IMO, is never an easy thing to pull off, and there has to be like tons of rehearsals to get the entire flow going smoothly without a single hitch. It’s my first time going to a church musical too, and I can honestly say that it was a great experience.

The entire cast of the musical, post-performance.

The musical focused upon a modern Singaporean family, where the son in question (Keith) succumbed to the temptations outside and left his family, after a heated argument with his father. In the end when he had nothing left, he finally repented, returning to his faith and his family. The return of the prodigal son, so to speak. A simple story, but suitable for Christmas nonetheless.

YC on his first solo performance. Great singing I must say 🙂

After the performance. YC and ahkein.

YC’s father, together with us.

I’m glad I came for the musical too 🙂

of the crowded boxing day.

Crap, I didn’t even know it was Boxing Day till XQ told me about it just now -.- It makes for a good title anyways, I’m kinda runnin’ outta ideas these days.

Disaster mode #1: The brother shows why it is not good to splatter perfectly good chicken breast meat liberally with half a bottle of seasoning, when the bottle’s instructions read “sprinkle”.

Disaster mode #2: CP’s lasagne at Cafe Cartel Marina Square, which resembles a puddle of bak chor. Where’d all the lasagne go? Hrmmm..

Ooo, complimentary log cake. Miniscule log cake at that.

Favourite of the day for ahkein: fish ‘n chips for the dentally infirm. (I just had my dental on Friday, brr.)

Funny faced thingy. Looks like me?

of the christmas eve (updated)

Woah. Before I go on about anything else, thanks to all the people who sent Christmas SMS greetings out to me; I really appreciate the thought 🙂 People like Adri, Qinglong, Alvin, Nerissa, Isaac, Ellen, Linda and I dunno who else, I’ve like deleted all the SMSes. If you did send a Christmas SMS, you’re on this list.

Despite my grave doubts, I caught The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe in the end, and yes, it was everything I expected it to be. Great effects, lousy actors. Not that I could do better, but I seriously believed that Mr and Mrs Beaver (and Aslan as well) acted much better, compared to Edmund and Lucy. Brrrr, sucks.

And since I’ve been gulping red wine almost nonstop for almost six hours, it’s kinda miraculous that I’m (once again) sober enough to do anything and everything. This really sucks at times. I wonder if there *is* a time when I can actually get drunk, brr. The concept of being drunk once again stupefies me.

Group photo with the guys, over at S’s place.

Merry Christmas to one and all! I’ll be working on Sunday and Monday night, so enjoy your off days people 🙂

*For the friends of the brother, he’s been out at Sentosa for the entire Christmas Eve, and collapsed into bed when I finally managed to crawl home. If he doesn’t reply to your messages, don’t worry, it’s not your fault ;p