Little Luke "Skywalker"

Friday, July 29, 2005

Balcony, Window, Porthole or Wall?

Coming back to our family's cruise vacation that I talked about two days ago, I just got some numbers on the costs. It will cost around a whopping RM3,400 on top of J's company subsidy to get us a Oceanview Stateroom + Balcony aboard the Superstar Virgo for a 4D3N trip to Phuket and Penang!

What is more shocking is that Star Cruise even charges 25% for toddlers below 2 years old. How much space and food can a 1 year old toddler consume? Sigh...

Well... I think we will still go ahead in getting a better room (the one provided by J's company is a Inside Stateroom (ie. a room with four walls and single beds). We could have gotten a cheaper deal if they actually booked 45 days ahead instead of this last minute change of plan.

Do you guys think is worth it?

Enlighten me...

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/29/2005 12:17:00 PM :: and invited 3 Blah(s):

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Thursday, July 28, 2005

What Kind of Worker Are You?

It's been a long time since my last blog that is related to my office. Maybe I should include more of my office stuff in my blog in the future.

In my working environment, I can’t help but notice there are various categories of workers (ground workers and supervisory workers included). I don’t know if it is the same everywhere, so please comment.

Slave Workers
  • Slave Workers exist in all kind of industry and they are easily spotted by supervisory level workers.
  • Slave Workers are not ambitious (ie. not aiming for promotions or taking credits), low in expectations (ie. cheaper by dozens) and really hardworking.
  • Slave Workers are being manipulated all the times by other workers in doing tedious and hard work (ie coding, testing and debug, handling customer complaints, rectifying errors etc.).
  • Management workers will want to keep as many of Slave Workers as possible to get themselves up the management ladder.
  • Most often than not, Slave Workers are made to do things which are not stipulated in their job description namely carry stuff, photostatting, cleaning the toner, fax, chasing debts etc.
  • Slave Workers are the real asset to an organization as no work will be done without them and the rest of the management hierarchy will fall without their support at the bottom.
  • Slave Workers are often blamed for any misfortune that might happen (be it bugs in program, dirty workplace, client complaints, damage door locks, toilets that won’t flush etc.).
  • The turnover rate of Slave Workers are relative low as they are not on the lookout for better prospects and prefer adapt than change.
  • Slave Workers have a mixed track record because they rarely retaliate in any form to their superiors, but they are often made scapegoats for anything that went wrong.

Smart Workers
  • Smart Workers also exist everywhere and they are not easily spotted because they tend to lay low at times.
  • Smart Workers have high ambition but they rarely publicize it for their own job security.
  • Smart Workers are constantly on the look-out for greener pastures within and outside of their own company.
  • Smart Workers are not easily manipulated to do chores or work that is irrelevant to them. Smart Workers always grab any opportunities to enrich themselves in their profession (as long as it is company sponsored).
  • Smart Workers also tend to have side business or freelance work other than their main profession in order to earn more income as well as prepare themselves to venture their own business while tapping to company resources and contacts.
  • The turnover rate for Smart Workers are relatively high as they are constantly wanted and they always chase after better opportunities.
  • Management workers will always keep a small number of Smart Workers around them but will always keep a close eye on them.
  • Without Smart Workers, the company will not move forward by relying only on Slave Workers as they are only good at repetitive day-to-day task.
  • Smart Workers are needed to provide fresh ideas and useful input to the company.
  • Smart Workers also tends to skip ranks in submitting good ideas and proposals to the boss directly (without going through their direct supervisor), hence, they are tightly control and movement monitored to prevent them from rising above their supervisor.
  • Smart Workers also tend to avoid tasks or projects which they deemed will end up in failure or complications.
  • Smart Workers always keep their track records as spotless as possible in order to move further within or outside the organization.

Geek Workers
  • Geek Workers are found mainly in industry that requires a lot of technical knowledge such as engineering, IT etc.
  • Geek Workers constantly enrich themselves with knowledge and skills whether it is company sponsored or self funded.
  • Geek Workers may or may not be easily manipulated to do chores as they are extremely specialized worker who are very out-of-touch with everything else (they may not know how to fax, photostat, letter writing or handle disgruntled customers).
  • Geek Workers have a very limited social circle as they tends to mix among themselves for mutual benefits.
  • Geek Workers are idealist people that will constantly stick to their suggestions or arguments although they are not realistic, hence, they do not make good decision makers.
  • Geek Workers are must-haves for management worker as they are easily controlled since they have no political ambitions and they are the real brains behind every technology and products.
  • Geek Workers are not motivated by money and ranks but knowledge and technologies.
  • Geek Workers are constantly head-hunted within and outside the organizations.• Geek Workers will participate in any work that is relevant to their field of interests regardless of the risk and outcome of the project.
  • Geek Workers are important asset to the organization as they are the source of ideas and inspirations to the future development of any business.
  • The track record for Geek Workers are mixed as well due to their stubbornness that comes with their good ideas.

Incompetent Worker
  • They are rare breeds, but many of them exist especially in the higher management of an organization.
  • Incompetent Workers are easily spotted by people around them, but not to the eyes of people outside the company.
  • Incompetent Workers ride on the knowledge and strength of other workers on their way up the management ladder.
  • Incompetent Workers are often given managerial positions through means like being the pioneers of the organization, close relative to other members of the management, appointed by backdoor means or maybe sheer looks alone.
  • The turnover rate of Incompetent Workers is extremely low as they can only survive in their current organization. If they leave the current organization under any circumstances, they will find a hard time looking for jobs (not to mention if their ex-employer exposed their weakness in public).
  • Incompetent Workers continue to survive in an organization based on their skills in manipulating other workers while taking credit on their behalf.
  • Incompetent Workers always answer “I will get back to you on this” when asked a direct question by clients or their boss as they are constantly lack in their professional knowledge and only rely on their subordinates for answers.
  • Incompetent Workers (especially those in managerial post) always grilled other workers under them on petty issues like leave, claims, sitting position, toilet frequency, phone usage, talking attitude, lunch hour, personal relationship, relationship with staff from rival departments, salary etc. instead of their actual work.
  • Incompetent Workers always threaten their subordinates with their salary or appraisal in order to manipulate them into succumbing to their selfish agenda.
  • Incompetent Workers have a habit of playing office politics at every given opportunity in order to draw everyone’s attention away from their ability to do any real work.
  • Incompetent Workers also have a habit of constantly reminding other workers of their work, in order to make others believe that they themselves are doing their job.
  • Incompetent Workers either end up getting lay-off by the company or end up in managerial position by means of playing office politics while riding on other workers.
  • Incompetent Workers will constantly stop other workers from improving themselves especially when it might prompt the possibility of a promotion to people other than themselves.
  • Incompetent Workers will avoid blame at all cost, even to the extent of sacrificing a member of their own team to the chopping board.
  • Incompetent Workers often mix with their own kind (if they have any) as they are the next most disliked lots apart from the boss.

Which of these categories do you belong to? And which do you think I fit in to?

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/28/2005 12:16:00 PM :: and invited 1 Blah(s):

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Wednesday, July 27, 2005

JB Trip and Cruise Vacation

This weekend will be a traveling weekend for our family (a driving one for me). We will be headed to Kluang, Johor to attend a birthday dinner for J's grandmother (which I am told are celebrating her seven decade of life).

We'll be driving down to Kluang on Saturday afternoon because J is working half-day. Normally I do my driving around 4am but in this case we have no choice (is not worth to apply for a full day leave on Saturday). Will be driving for around three hours under the hot sun (hopefully the weather will be cloudy) to Kluang. I hope that Little Skywalker can take it. The last time we did an afternoon drive back to Parit (Perak, near Batu Gajah), he was screaming and crying non-stop in the car. Maybe it was the hot weather had got to him. Hopefully not this time.

After the dinner, we will further drive down to JB and tumpang in my in-laws place as well as let them lay their hands on their grandson after two months. I've always like JB because I can get a lot of good quality DVDs there cheaper than KL. We can go to any shopping mall and there are always shops that sell good DVDs (who cares about piracy when we are not filthy rich).

Driving back to KL will be either in the Sunday evening or night depending on the situation. I would like to drive back at night but J have to work on Monday while I am on-leave. Anyway, it will depend on what time Little Skywalker plan to have his evening nap. As soon as we see get a sleepy signal from him, we will hit the road! Toddlers tend to sleep very well on the road (so do his father driving on a straight and boring highway).

J's company trip has been changed from a KunMing trip (which our family didn't plan to participate) to a cruise trip to Phuket due to unforeseen circumstances (failure to book enough return air tickets). We were quite excited since we have long plan to go for a cruise trip since we got hitched two years ago (J more excited since she has never been to one). The final decision will be made known this Saturday.

Keeping our fingers crossed till then!

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/27/2005 10:48:00 AM :: and invited 1 Blah(s):

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Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Baby Who Cannot Make Up His Mind

It was nice and sky-clear Sunday last weekend. I really hope for more of such weekend so that our family can do more outings at nearby playgrounds instead of sitting home teaching Little Skywalker to sing "rain rain... go away... come again some other day".

We have a big playground field behind our house equipped with basketball court, those stones that people like to walk on bare foot, football area, outdoor gym (if you can call it) and of course, children playground. Little Skywalker has been there I think around three to four times with me and J (other times might be with J's in-laws when they come from JB). J always ask to bring him to the playground, but the weather always has the final say.

When we arrived, there were already many kids and babies around, crowding all the equipments. We just waited there with poor Skywalker looking enviously at other "friends" having fun. We managed to put him on the next empty equipment when we get the chance. However, Little Skywalker just cannot make up his mind on which equipment he wants to play. The rest of the story would be best told in pictures instead.

I think I want to play that one!

That one is better!

I think I saw something better from up here!

Nononono... I think that one should be more fun!

This is great! I like "walking" with all of my feet... and in a "controlled" environment!

Yeap... I am sure this is the FUN one I like!

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/26/2005 11:47:00 AM :: and invited 6 Blah(s):

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Monday, July 25, 2005

Baby Who Reads Shopping Catalogs

Yeah... you read it right... Little Skywalker is learning to read shopping catalogs instead of story books. Oh my, he must have got this from his mother (likes to look at expensive things, mainly due to the fact that we cannot afford any).

Photoblog as follows:

Read lying down... that how his father got his glasses in the first place... following footsteps

Showing his cute teeth and posing while reading...

Looking good...

Wonder what's on the next page?

I'll "bookmark" this for future reference... and ask someone to get for me!

I want this item NOW!

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/25/2005 02:26:00 PM :: and invited 3 Blah(s):

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Saturday, July 23, 2005

Attention Seeker !!

It has became obvious to us yesterday that Little Skywalker is an attention seeker afterall like all other toddlers. We thought he is different because he always play by himself and constantly trying to escape his parents' scope of sight.

After tucking him to his evening nap yesterday, J and I started playing our new PS2 game - "Fantastic 4" by Activision. Kinda boring game at first because J (second co-op player) only assumed the character of weird looking and weak robot instead of other F4 characters. But as the game progresses, it became more interesting as we both can use different F4 characters.

Before we managed to finish the first chapter (long chapter by the way), Little Skywalker has already woke up from his nap and start looking around the living room. He noticed us enjoying ourselves in front of the "evil box" and wanted to join in the fun. J held him together and let him feel the vibration on the game pad as we continue our fight against the evil Von Doom.

After a few minutes of playing (or rather feeling the strange sensation on Little Skywalker's part), he managed to get on his four "feet" and crawled to his usual toys (which is strange because he seldom played with them and rather throw them around the house). He started taking out his toys one by one and started asking J to play with him. He keep handing J his toys one by one and demanded J make them spin or switch them on.

J managed to entertain him while I paused the game for a minute. When we started playing again, he scream out loud and continue on his quest of getting his mother's attention. He would push the game pad away from his mother's hands and put other toys in them. Crawling to and fro from the PS2 machine and attempting to pull out the wires (showing early signs of engineer in the making) and press the bright blue reset button.

After a few minutes, we decided to give in to his demands and started playing his toys with him. However, he decided otherwise, he began his usual routine of standing up against the TV (maybe he wanted to touch some characters of some TV shows) as well as crawling around the house, up the stairs etc. instead of playing with his parents. Sigh!

So both J and I are left with chasing him around the house as usual to make sure he don't bump into anything or fall down the stairs.

Come to think of it, maybe J and I should get put some sleeping pill in his water the next time we want to have some time to ourselves. Or else, we will face another attack from the mighty Attention Seeker again to spoil our fun. Or maybe we should call him up in his office very often when he grew up and left us both retired in a home or something... just hoping...

Revenge is not far away!

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/23/2005 11:41:00 AM :: and invited 2 Blah(s):

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Friday, July 22, 2005

Toddler's Vocabulary Lesson

Four months after Little Skywalker was born, he has began to show signs of eagerness to talk to us (probably wanted to shout at us for non-stop harassing him during his sleep time). Due to my continuous "influential coercion", he managed to burp out his first word, and yes, it was "pa pa" or rather like "puh pah". Hence, I beat J to getting him to call me first!

In order to teach a toddler on how to convey their thoughts, we need to make them feel the urge of communicating as well as the benefits of doing so. Is like training sea lion to jump through fire-lit hoops, you've got to give them some kinda candies afterwards :P In my case, I would carry him up and down, or take him for a walk after he pronounce my name (or rather his way of calling me) properly.

Another point to bear in mind is that you should not confuse the young toddler on various words that mean different things and yet they are quite similar in pronunciation. Words like "mum mum" (food) and "ma ma" should never be taught together. That's why J failed to convince Little Skywalker to call her first in her race with me. At least I was not stupid enough to teach him "pah pah" (scared in mandarin) together with my title.

Toddlers will only managed to pick up single syllable words like "ball", "fan", "car", "key", "bird", "fish" etc. at first if you pronounce it in multiple times in front of them ("ball x2", "fan x2", "car x2"... you'd get what I mean). And believe me, sooner or later, this kind of speaking will get to you, and you will start talking strangely in front of your colleagues and friends :P

Toddlers also remember better in terms of things that they see everyday. So, if you want them to pronounce a certain words, please come ready with the necessary props or better yet, the actual thing.

So far, our Little Skywalker are getting much better in terms speaking and pointing to stuff that he wants. When he is lazy to speak but he wants something badly, he will just point to it and keep nodding his head repeatedly until his request is being fulfilled. He is even smart enough to finish a word when we uttered the first syllable, like A-pple. Actually our intention was to get him finish a sentence like "A for Apple, B for Ball", but we will take it for now...

If you master the whole art of teaching and have all the necessary resources, who knows, you might trick them to say "Hippopotamus" within the first 15 months!

On a side note: some barbaric teacher (if they still deserve the title) uses two students as human shield when he rides his motorcycle home from school (with one seated in front and one at the back) in order to protech himself from bandits and terrorist which is on the uprise in Southern Thailand. I tell you this, if he uses our son as a shield, he can stop worrying about attacks from bandits or terrorist, because I will be the first one who will personally put a bullet in his/her head.

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/22/2005 08:36:00 AM :: and invited 5 Blah(s):

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Tuesday, July 19, 2005

First Time Pasar Malam Goer

For your information, J contributed the following piece (after some editing by yours truly):

After reading the "Kuih" In Camouflaged @ Jason Mumbles, J realised it has been a long time since she tasted any "Loh Mai Chi" and the crave for it is mouting. So J yahoo-ed me right away and begged me to bring Little Skywalker (what a cheap shot! using your son as an excuse) to pasar malam because he never went to one before.

Both J and I used to go to pasar malam every Monday and Thursday for dinner during when we were still a married couple. Since Little Skywalker’s appearance, my parents baby-sit him and we have dinner at home every evening unless there is a special event. Coincidently, my parents didn’t cook yesterday, and it became a perfect evening for a pasar malam outing.

When we arrived at the pasar malam, Little Skywalker was in the middle of his little car nap. J had to wake him up. He objected a little but soon his attention was distracted by the busy crowd. He was quite excited to see so many people and things around him and happily making soudns while pointing to things. I offered to carry him around so that J could go “hunt” for dinner.

We stopped by a biscuit stall to look for my favourite biscuit, which can only be found at pasar malam (stupid Jusco didn’t wanna stock up anymore). The hawker was kind enough to offer Little Skywalker some samples as soon as our dear son started pointing his little fingers around. We end up buying half a kilo of my favourite from him and will definitely come back for more for obvious reason.

While Little Skywalker’s is busy enjoying his biscuit and the pasar malam environment, we started to hunt for our dinner. We've bought lots of food:- cha kuih, fried chicken, asam laksa, popiah, sugar cane juice.. but we just couldn’t find any stalls selling the loh mai chi.

Giving up on the "loh mai chi", our last stop is the newspaper cum magazine’s stall where we got a copy of the latest Crayon SinChan #41 (Yes... we collects them). That is when I saw a tiny stall which is selling a variety of “kuih-muih”. On the stall there is a big bowl of crunched peanuts, rolls of dough and an empty tray with glutinous rice flour in. The girl is actually making “loh mai chi” on the spot while all the customers waiting in front of the stall. So finally J didn’t get what she wanted to eat because there are too many people waiting in line and the take-aways are getting heavier and so is Little Skywalker.

To pasar malam & "loh mai chi"…. We’ll be back…. And hopefully by then Little Skywalker will be able to walk by himself.

So long for now…

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/19/2005 04:12:00 PM :: and invited 3 Blah(s):

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Walking Lesson Step-by-Step

This is a Photoblog...
This is a also a step-by-step instruction guide for first-time toddlers on how to walk graciously without tripping over your own feet and being laughed at.

Disclaimer: Toddlers below 12 months old should not imitate what is being performed by the toddler shown in picture as he has undergone professional Jedi training together with his mother...

Start with both hands holding to something eg. another hand on a water hose stand

Warm up yourself by swinging your hand one hand after another erratically in the air
Start marching like communist soldiers with leg as high as 80 degrees to begin
When your head is knocking against a concrete wall, maybe it's time to turn around
Wave to passer-by so that it would seem natural (before they start to suspect that you are a toddler)
Help to hang out the laundry if possible to make yourself look more convincing
However... grab hold of something graciously when you are about to loose your balance and fall
While you are at it... might as well check if the gate is locked to deter outsiders from finding out the truth
Remember: always stand next to an object that is shorter than you (or placed at a lower position than you) so that you will look like a GIANT
That's all folks... good luck in your walking lessons (while I take a long nap)

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/19/2005 09:28:00 AM :: and invited 2 Blah(s):

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Monday, July 18, 2005

Fever, Weekend Outing and Beethoven

Normally, the three of us will spend an entire weekend to ourselves.

We would go out for a nice dinner (not-family-cooked) at our usual steakhouse on Saturday night (less than RM50 per dinner isn't that bad, huh?). After that, we will probably head to the Jusco Kepong to buy something as well as familiarise Little Skywalker with the kiddie rides (he is still afraid of getting into those kiddie rides for unknown reason).

Sunday would be mostly indoor activities (TV, DVDs, toys, inflatable swimming pool etc.) and a trip to the playground if the weather is good.

However, we did not managed to perform our weekend routine the last weekend though as poor Little Skywalker came down with a slight fever as the result of the measles injection the week before. He began showing signs of rising temperature throughout his body since he got up in the morning and his temper was off the charts. He was crying and shouting throughout the whole day. Poor fella... I wonder why those brilliant doctors can't come up with some vaccines that do not carry any side-effects especially to a child.

After a whole day of grumbling and yelling, J and I managed to put him to bed around 11pm while both of us continue watching our Star Trek Voyager until 3am. Phew! What a long day...
We woke up around 10am on Sunday morning while Little Skywalker was up early at 8am. We are happy to see him all well and healthy again. We figure he might have a good appetite after a whole day of suffering, so we've decided to have dim-sum buffet for brunch at MEISAN SZECHUAN RESTAURANT within the Quality Hotel (along Jalan Raja Chulan).

I've been to the restaurant with colleagues before this, but this is the first time for J and Little Skywalker. We reach there around 11am and the place is still quite empty (but with most tables reserved). We managed to get a table and started our one hour brunch. Little Skywalker managed to finish off nearly two bowl of porridge plus other dim-sum and fruits. He was really getting his revenge on the food he miss the day before. J was so busy feeding him that she almost has no time to eat herself. For me, I was busy walking to the serving table each time the waiter come up with new stock, trying to fight for food with other hungry people!

We managed to fill our stomachs to the max limit after one hour and head to our next stop (where else, Jusco Kepong again!). This time we did not bring Little Skywalker for his rides as he is already very tired from all the swallowing of food. We managed to bring him round on the shopping trolley before he fell asleep in the car on our way home.

Our Sunday dinners are usually take-aways fried stuff from the opposite road because we usually stay home to watch F1 (which majority of them are held in Europe and the live telecast starts around 8pm Sunday night). Although there is no F1 this weekend, we still rather eat take-aways due to poor weather conditions. Three of us walk with umbrella to our usual store (Little Skywalker was wearing his cartoon cap while I had on my new NY Yankees cap... cool looking) and bring back something for dinner while we continue on our Voyager series.

Funny thing about Little Skywalker, every time the theme song starts to play, he will concentrate fully on the TV screen and start his action as a musical conductor! I would really wanna skip the music, but looking at him conducting his invisible orchestra repeatedly is priceless. J and I still wonder where he got his conducting lessons from, maybe Beethoven or Mozart came to his dream and offered free lessons (which I don't mind unless they demand payment from me).

Well... that's it... our family weekend activities!

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/18/2005 03:28:00 PM :: and invited 0 Blah(s):
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Thursday, July 14, 2005

Standing Tall at 72!

J and I were watching Friends again (for the 100th time) yesterday evening as ASTRO has nothing interesting before 8pm. At the beginning of every episode, Little Skywalker will pay his full attention to the big screen and patiently wait for his favourite theme song to begin.

Since we didn't manage to get him to stand up for a long time, I put him on his feet each time we come to the The Rembrandts song. It works! He managed to stand on himself for the whole duration of the song (maybe 2-3 minutes max)! I think is just a matter of distracting his attention to something else while he is standing. Or else, he will just stand for a few seconds and then stick his butt on the floor again.

After that, J and I thought of another way to make him stand. We line him up to the height measurement chart that J put up few days ago. Although we got his height from his last check-up at the clinic, we still wanna give it a try ourselves to see if those numbers are accurate.

Alas, we managed to get him standing still without banging his head to the wall and used a "stickyman" to mark down his height to be captured by my FX7 later. Well, we are proud to say that our son is now standing tall at 72cm (about half his mother's height!).

Thinking back, is been a long way since all three of us has come this far. Since we've made it this far, we don't think is a problem to go for another 17-18 years (but that's it man, after that J and I should both retire at a peaceful foreign land, and receiving monthly allowance from Little Skywalker...).

Meanwhile... keeping all our fingers crossed!

Way to go... son!

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/14/2005 04:28:00 PM :: and invited 1 Blah(s):

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Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Surprise Drop-in at Workplace

While I was staring at my screen with one eye closed, I heard a familiar voice suddenly (not my boss). It was Little Skywalker! My mother brought him to along to my workplace after she went for her doctor's appointment in the Hospital (I work in a hospital, sadly not as a doctor).

This is his second trip to my workplace already. Little Skywalker is well-known to my colleagues already since the last time he dropped by. He became the apple of everyone's eyes the very instant he arrive here the first time. Everyone one was ecstatic to meet him after they saw all of his photos I stuck around my cubicle. Most of them took turns to carry him as well.

It is so nice to spend a few moments with him, especially with work pilling up everywhere. I really needed a small break from all these.

For Little Skywalker, he is having his own share of fun each time as well by playing with all the stuff I have around me, like the keyboard, mouse, barcode reader (latest addition to my stuff), stationeries etc. Hopefully he don't grow up and get stuck inside a cubicle like me though...

Well... fun's over... back to work...

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/13/2005 01:52:00 PM :: and invited 3 Blah(s):

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Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Housemaker or Singer??

Since the past few days, Little Skywalker is started to have an interest in helping out his daddy hanging out the laundry (yeah... I do help out in some house work). J and I will put him in the laundry basket together with the rest of the washed clothing. While J holds on to the basket to prevent our son being tumble over, he will hand out the clothing to me piece by piece. He needed a hand (from J) from time to time when he is trying to pick up a piece of cloth that he is standing on.

Noble intention as it may be, he is working way too hard and too efficient at his job. I just could not keep up with the pace in which he hand those clothes to me. Hence, he will just let off those clothes on his hand even when no one is there to catch it (luckily his father is working his ass off to prevent those white clothes from falling on the porch). So, instead of the normal five to ten minutes that I usually take to hang out the whole basket, Little Skywalker managed to work me down to under five (way to go... boy!)

Come bed time, J and I usually take turn to go to bath so that one of us will watch Little Skywalker. Yesterday night, while I was on my watch, I started to sing to him those few usual kids songs that his mother used to sing to him everyday.

When we came to the "Guest come and visit daddy" (in mandarin of course) song, Little Skywalker began to sing along. Although he can only pronounce a few words in the lyrics correctly (words including "pa pa" and "bu zai jia" - not at home in mandarin), it was really cool. At least now we have a duet, and perhaps a von Trapp singing group if J agrees to re-live her labour experience for at least six more times to form a full choir group.

So folks... what do you think? a housemaker? or a singer?

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/12/2005 01:11:00 PM :: and invited 1 Blah(s):

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Monday, July 11, 2005


After reading about a 8-years old running away from a childcare home in Puchong this morning, I started my flashback when J and I were discussing about various of alternatives to our next generation. Back then, we were talking about in the case that we have problems bearing a child, should we consider adoption as an alternative? Or maybe we adopt the child of some relative who may give birth to too many children they can afford?

J, as conservative as she may be, has initially objected to the idea. As for me, I am all for adoption! Is simple math, why are we continuing in producing more babies, when there are so many babies in this world still being left uncared for? (just kidding of course but none the less...)

Every child is a precious life regardless of the background of his/her parents. We should not condemn the life of an innocent baby because of what their parents did, could we? Since we cannot undo the birth of a baby, we should instead focus on how to take care of the innocent child with the best that we can. Let bygones be bygones. Children should never carry the burden of what their parents do, they should be allowed to live their own life instead!

I was also watching an Oprah episode on StarWorld yesterday where three single African woman in US were sharing their experiences in adopting babies. I am amazed about the system they have in US (I first came across this in the Friends sitcom but I thought it was only fiction). Do you know that their adoption system allow the adopting parent to adopt a baby even before the baby was born with the consent of the biological mother?

One of the guest on Oprah's show actually got disappointed twice when the biological parent(s) decides to keep their baby after delivery. All of them appeared to be leading a normal life with their kids without the help of any man. Two of them are actually considering for another adoption!

Back to the newspaper report, the said boy was sent to the foster home the day before by his grandmother. The boy's parents are mentally handicapped, hence the grandmother has been taking care of the boy since birth. Due to rising age and eye related illness, the poor granny decided it was in the best of the boy's interest to be placed in the foster home like his sister.

J and I sympathize the boy very much (as well as those orphans everywhere). However, we have no idea on ways to help the boy other than donating money to foster homes. I do not think donating money is an effective way to help them (I wonder any of the donations actually went to the benefit of the kid). However, we cannot afford to adopt another child into our family. We are truly at a lost...

None the less, I do encourage the public to consider adoption as a viable option for an offspring. I think these children have suffered enough from being deprived of parental care and love. The least we could do is show them there is still hope in our society for them, adoption is an alternative that works.

Everyone are welcome to share their experience in adoption if you have one...

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/11/2005 02:05:00 PM :: and invited 0 Blah(s):
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Friday, July 08, 2005

Training of Jedi Order

Photoblog again... (daily training activities to bring up Little Skywalker as a professional Jedi)...

the old master Yoda is supervising on Me and J's behalf (got this cool dude from a friend)

Little Skywalker perform the way of the "force" on his transport

Little Skywalker learning how to pilot his transport

Little Skywalker miggling with his "R2" unit

Young Jedi stole Yoda's personal flying saucer (I "fly" him round the house in this all the time)

This is our young Skywalker's future we hope...

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Thursday, July 07, 2005

Another Bash

Since yesterday was the official day of Little Skywalker's birthday, J and I decided to throw him another private bash for him at home and also the fact that he cried at the last bash during the photography session.

So we went ahead and bought a small little cake for him but party props were sold out. Upon reaching home, J pampered him to sleep for a while so that he will have enough energy for our surprise party.

After he woke up, we have very much prepared everything, the cake, the candle, the rubber cake-cutter but not party hat :(

First thing we did was a total photo shoot with all of us and the cake. Next thing we did was to light up the candle, a point which Little Skywalker started to get intrigued. This was followed by another few snaps of the camera.

Blowing-the-candle part was quite hard because Little Skywalker only knew how to suck everything up to this point. Showing him how to blow something was a huge task. The closest thing that we can think of is asking him to imitate a fart with his mouth! Anyway, we didn't think it was wise to teach him that in front of a nice cake. So for the sake of photo-shooting, we help him to blow out the one and only candle.

We also helped him to cut the cake in front of the camera (again...). But he prefer using his own hands instead. He didn't actually mess up the whole cake as he is quite a delicate guy when it comes to things that are new to him. He only dared to poke the sides of the cake and retreat immediately (a little chicken don't you think?)

Lastly, everyone grabbed a bite of the cake until we couldn't stuff it down anymore. While eating, I turned on Little Skywalker's favourite MTV (I'll be there for you - The Rembrandts) while he can eat and dance all at once. However, I did painted the face of the birthday boy just for the sake of photo snapping! Yes, I am sorta a crazy father... J even suggested pressing his face against the cake!

Till next year then... maybe by then I can do what J had in mind!

Happy Birthday again, son!

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Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Our One Year "Young" Skywalker

It's official! Our Little Skywalker is already one year old. Although is a weekday, J and I are still trying to think of something special to do for him. Last weekend's birthday bash was great, but still, today is still THE DAY.

Looking back the past whole year, he has really bring more colors and joy to both our lives. Although he did gave us a whole week of horrifying experience after his birth, but still, we think that such experience will only make us appreciate him more. The thought of him barely survived his first few days still sends chills down my spine.
Even now, I still wake up on and off in the middle of the night to check on Little Skywalker, just to make sure that he is breathing normally although he has obtained his clean bill of health since almost 9 months ago. Trust me, after going through a scene with him lying there unconscious (mostly due to drugs) with tubes and sensors all over his body next to a air ventilator machine will change your behavior forever.

To us, as long as our son is healthy all the time, J and I are satisfied no matter how he turn out to be in the future. From the time he first open his eyes, until he is starting to stand up and walk a few steps, every step of the way is a huge milestone for him as well as J and I. We hope to continue showering love and care over him for as long as we can.

I was reading a newspaper report this morning, about a baby was found in the midst of a rubber estate after being born for 4-5 hours. I am happy that the baby was found alive and not hurt by insects or other creatures. God must have been watching all over her while her parents left her there. I am sad for the mother who had to leave her newborn behind. I am even sadder for our unforgiving society who uses any means (including religion, how dare we!) to outcast single mothers and force them to abandon their babies. Whatever those so-called moral guardians of religion say, I know they will be judged for their remarks, which has caused the death of many innocent babies.

In my view, no matter what any religion or any laws for that matter says, babies are innocent! A life is a life. Human babies are born with nothing inherited from their parents except looks and DNA. Hence, they should not be sacrificed for what their parents did that is deemed to be immoral by society's standards. The harder we try to look down on single mothers, the harder we will be judge when we meet our Maker, I guarantee you that...

Hence, I was glad I did not come across any news about the death of abandoned babies but one that has been found alive on this joyous occasion of our family. However, I do appeal to Malaysians as a whole, while we are safeguarding our society's moral values, we should always be prepared to forgive and forget the mistakes of one another. No sane mothers would want to abandon their newborn after enduring the full term of pregnancy as well as the painful experience of child birth if given a choice. Everyone are bound to make mistakes. If we do want to achieve the goal of a develop nation first, then let us change our mentality for a start, no huge buildings or airports is going to help us down this path.

Unless we declare ourselves a saint first, then let no one cast the first stone...

Happy Birthday Son !!
Hope you will stay healthy (and naughty) for more birthdays to come !!

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Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Little Skywalker vs. Flashcards

After reading about using flashcards on their son at Loopy Meals (yes, I actually started this blog after being inspired by the Tan family... so thank you James for the inspiration... and hopefully we can meet some days so that our kids can have a clean mano-a-mano), J and I have decided to try it on Little Skywalker. So instead of getting him another toy that he will play for about 15 minutes before throwing it around, we got him two set of flashcards to start off with.

J was having a tough time picking through (even opened some of them) the 20 over sets of cards that was on display at the Popular Bookshop in Kepong Jusco that she finally gave up and push the task to me pulak. I just picked out two for "First Words" and "Alphabets and Colors" and headed straight to the cashier before J start a whole discussion on whether they are the RIGHT ones.

At home, I opened both of the flashcards set and started browsing through them while Little Skywalker was doing his "business" in front of the TV. He loves the TV by the way and specifically "The Rembrandts - I'll be there for you". I picked out the few items that Little Skywalker is familiar with to start off.

I put a picture of a familiar item next to an unfamiliar item and asked him to point out the familiar item. Surprisingly, he did so with little effort.

(Skywalker 1 - Flashcards 0)

Then, I put two familiar items next to each other and asked him to point out each item one after another. He looked at them for a moment and completed the task as well. J was beginning to think that our little boy may be a genius (Why are mothers always like that?).

(Skywalker 2 - Flashcards 0)

After that, I gave him a more difficult task by arranging 4 cards in a row and ask him to point out a specific item. Ahhhh.. finally he looks confused and puzzled... then he try to scramble those cards together to show sign of objections. I guess he is no Einstein afterall as J previously suspected.

(Skywalker 2 - Flashcards 1) - But Skywalker wins with a technical "scramble-out" !!

I look at those flashcards myself, some of them are really tough! Words like xylophone or hippopotamus aren't meant for a kid with four teethes. Furthermore, one of them even show an axe, hmmm... well to cultivate violence thoughts huh! I notice J and my parents sometimes try to teach Little Skywalker to say some words that sounds the same and yet refer to different things. To a one year old kid, that is just screwing him in the brain! Hence, I asked J to find different words to represent each item (even in different language is fine) so that poor Skywalker will not require psychological treatment at such a young age...

Another thing... one of the set of flashcards that I bought actually has real pictures of items taken. I personally do not think a small kid would like that very much, I think small kids would prefer a cartoonist illustration of "Nemo" instead of a photo of some fish.

Just my two cents...

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/05/2005 11:00:00 AM :: and invited 1 Blah(s):

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Uniform in Office

Every now and then, I have people coming up to my asking the same question: "Didn't I saw you in this shirt yesterday or the day before?"

Well... to answer future enquiries about my office attire, I might as well blog it here and make reference to this site.

I only have two piece of shirt (collar + long sleeves) to wear to office (one dark blue and one dark red). Since my skin is quite sensitive to most kind of clothing, I wear an additional piece of T-shirt inside to protect myself against itch. I work in a fully air-conditioned office and only walk short distance to lunch (sometimes even lunch place is air-conditioned). Hence, I wear my working shirt twice before I throw them into the machine while my T-shirt is washed everyday.

I got my two "working" shirt from my uncle actually. He used to be in the textile industry before he retired. Hence, he still has some big contacts in the industry. I asked for his help in getting me some "working" attire before I started working (that was about 4-5 years ago). He brought me to one of his friend's factory who is making formal clothing with famous brands such as JohnMaster, Spaceman etc.

I actually browse through their latest samples in order to pick out the ones I like. Since I do not care so much on my clothing (but I do have good fashion sense though :P), I only have one simple and practical selection criteria - the clothes I wear to work should never require any ironing to be done.

My uncle's friend showed me to this "cool" material that is soft and fulfill my requirement. After that, I just picked out the one of each of my favourite colors and voila! My uncle and his friend did not want any payment for the shirts as my uncle still consider my yet to earn much. Hence, they decide to settle it over a game of golf themselves. So up till now, I still didn't know how much they cost.

These two clothes I am wearing now are still the same two clothes that I wore to office everyday without fail (unless my wife, J decided not to do a wash few days in a row) for the past 4-5 years. Since then, I never gotten any "working" clothing. J has been bickering me for years now to buy more of such clothes so that she can stop worrying about me having nothing to wear to work. However, I am still very comfortable with these two. Since they require no ironing and machine-washable, I think J should be thankful instead :P

So for you people out there who are still wondering why do I keep wearing the same old shirt everyday. I have the following reasons to offer:
  • I kept them for sentimental reasons as they are a gift from my uncle (and yes, I do cry when watching sentimental show or movies)
  • I am very comfortable is wearing them and they do not irritates my skin
  • I am a lazy bugger who is too lazy to even pick out a shirt to wear before going to work
  • I kinda like the attention when people come up and start to talk to me, even petty little things like my attire
  • I have a super excuse to offer to J when she pester me to buy her new clothes
  • I hate to spend time and money on anything besides good food, or maybe doing something to help those in need :P

There you go guys... take a lesson from me and get a "uniform"... it will save you a helluva money...

Plus... you'll never know... your boss might think that you are not given enough salary to buy a decent clothings and decided to increase you bonus and increment at the end of the year !!

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/05/2005 10:17:00 AM :: and invited 0 Blah(s):
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Monday, July 04, 2005

PhotoBlog 2 (Birthday Bash)

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PhotoBlog 1 (Birthday Bash)

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First Birthday Bash

Although Little Skywalker's birthday is not due in 2 days, J and I has decided to throw him his first party (although technically, it would not be his first as he already had it during his "full month") on last Saturday because we did not wanna be an inconvenience to everyone by having it on a weekday.
We also decided to have a family-members (except for J's family who live about 350km away) only affair. We booked a typical chinese restaurant (20 seats and 8 course dinner) and a nice cake for our Little Skywalker few weeks ago. About the cake, we wanted to customized a "1" cake for him, however, King's Confectionery would only accept orders with 2kg and above. We were like thinking "who the hell is going to shove down the 2kg if not the dustbin?". So, instead of contributing unnecessary donation to the ever full landfill, we decided to go for a 1kg strawberry fruit cake (Little Skywalker has a thing for fruit, he eats them during every meal).
So come the eventful evening, everyone has gather in my parents' place. We left for the restaurant around 7.30pm and collected the cake on our way there. This is the first time we eat in that particular restaurant as our earlier choice was fully booked and this was recommended. Anyway, it's a great chance to try out the food as there is a huge possibility that my brother's wedding dinner will be held here as well come December.
Upon arrival, we were led to a partitioned room with two tables and a private karaoke set. Everyone was quite surprise with the private karaoke set that comes with it. The young ones and the elder ones were particularly happy that night as they really sang non-stop.
The first dish was served (typical four-happiness kinda dish) and followed by sharks fin soup. Little Skywalker only managed to take in a bit of the soup as he was busy doing his PR with the rest of the small crowd. I was busy shooting photos everywhere in order to capture the joyful moment. J was trying to feed our son in any way that she can as usual, but I think Little Skywalker rather PR-ing his way through the crowd.
Half way through the dinner, we are beginning to unbuckle our belts and almost half of each dish were being sent to "ta-bao". My parents were seen singing more than eating most of the time. Little Skywalker was also busy having fun with my uncle (whom we rarely see due to his busy golfing schedule).
After the desert was served, we brought out the cake, lighted a candle and started singing the "Happy Birthday" thing. Almost instantly after the song finished, poor Little Skywalker burst out in tears and hell broke loose! Most of us were laughing while J and I quickly pampered him into safety from all the public staring eyes. Guess our son wasn't used to being the centre of attention after all.
In less than 5 minutes, Little Luke was cool again (apart from the red eyes) and did his candle blowing and cake-cutting thingy with some help (from yours truly). Everyone took a piece of the cake and party's over...
Well... all's well for the first year, hopefully he will get used to the Birthday song next year...
Happy Birthday Son !! (From all of us who love you...)

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/04/2005 12:03:00 PM :: and invited 0 Blah(s):
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This blog does not have any relation or what-so-ever to George Lucas's Star Wars movie characters or any of its copyrighted material.

On the other-hand, this blog is about the blogger's family life with their first son, who was named Luke (will be hereon referred to as "Little Skywalker").

Little Skywalker was blessed upon me and my wife, J almost a year ago in a heart-touching manner (but I am sure most will find it to be an experience to forget), which I will add to the blog in future in full details.

We thanked everyone who had helped us in one way or another (especially their prayers) throughout the period after Little Skywalker was born.

Me and J have come a long way since then, and we hope to continue in our little ways in bringing up Little Skywalker (not in a Jedi way if you have gotten the wrong idea) to the best we can.

Subsequent addition to this blog will be our daily life experiences with Little Skywalker as well as our family.

Jotted down by Egghead :: at around 7/04/2005 11:44:00 AM :: and invited 0 Blah(s):
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