Monday, January 28, 2008
It was Auckland Anniversary Day (a regional holiday) today. I wanted to see regatta and went to a nearby park that has a vantage point or so I thought... Except that I couldn't see much. I saw some tall ships, a frigate and other ships going around but not much else. I missed out on tugboats race as well. Anyway. I saw this little fountain in the garden with birds frolicking. It was a pretty warm day.
Sunday, January 27, 2008
Saturday, January 26, 2008
Saturday, January 19, 2008
Friday, January 18, 2008
I just felt like to go down to Food Alley down in Albert Street. I went down Queen Street to see if D300 has come in yet; it hasn't. Bugger... Then headed over to Food Alley. What should I eat...? I settled for Bi bim bap for a dinner. I dunno, I'm a little ambivalent today. I sat fairly back in that joint, and I was smelling... Burning kerosene? And also a little bit of... Gutter stink? WTF? I like the place, but it kinda put me off today...
Thursday, January 17, 2008
Just like there are two sides on a coin, there are always two sides in a story reported from opposite sides. When that happens, whom do you believe?
In this particular case, do you believe reports coming from
Japan, or from Australia?
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
One of the summer student in the lab brought back souvenirs; mango and mangosteen puddings! I decided to sample the mango kind.
I opened it up and tucked in:
It was... Well. Obviously tasted like mango, but at the same time, tasted a little plastic, which worried me somewhat.
Monday, January 14, 2008
I really missed the Korean style BBQ. I used to go out for it with my friends back in Australia and in the US. If I can't go out for it, I'd do it at home... And I would have a charcoal one, I thought. I found out that local Chinese grocer sells thinly sliced meat for this, and I did give a go at doing this indoors. But it turned out that doing so indoors made such mess that I didn't want to deal with it again; it left lingering smell and also fume went all over the place. It had to be done outside.
Then I managed to get this portable charcoal grill off from a student in the lab. I felt like taking advantage of him for buying this off from him so cheaply, but hey I paid what he asked for, and I didn't haggle for the price. I went ahead and got meat, loaded the grill with charcoal, lit it and waited for the charcoal to going. Then it's barbie time!
It wasn't too bad, actually a lot better than doing this in my kitchen. Mmm yummo!
Saturday, January 12, 2008
I finally had a haircut... For the first time in 6 and a half months. My excuses for not cutting hair were the usual "oh I don't have time for it" and also "my usual hairdresser is closed". Well. It turned out that my usual hairdresser was closed for good. I didn't realize this for a long time, and so I had to scout for a new place to go. I saw a little sign on Broadway in Newmarket. I scouted the place out and I liked the look of it, looked like a classic barber inside. So, I just jumped in. 45 minutes later my head is lighter, my hair is reduced and I am happy. Now it's not as hot as before thank goodness. Maybe I will do this more often now that I found a place I'm happy with.
Tuesday, January 08, 2008
I was going through "Local Picks" in Facebook to rate restaurants I've been to that are listed... So far I've rated 100 restaurants. I must be bored or something. Out of that 100, I've rated only 4 restaurants in Auckland; the rest are mostly in the US, especially around DC area then about 20 in Canberra. Shows how little I go out to eat here. It's something I really enjoy doing; dining out with good friends. Unfortunately I don't get to do this here since friends I made here do not go out for meals often. *sigh* Oh well.
Well. What can I say? Just watch this ad for a beer.
Apparently some people find this funny. I dunno. I found it... A little offensive, really. Maybe I should be laughing, but somehow, no. I don't condone nor oppose Japanese whaling since I don't know all the facts surrounding this issue. But this ad, to me, stepped over that fine line between trying to be funny and downright bad taste. At least the brewer is getting press time, and I'm sure they are happy about it.
Wednesday, January 02, 2008
When I became an Australian back in the first year of the 21st century, there was a fairly simple test. You had to be able to tell what duties you must perform as an Australian, and also what rights you have an Australian. To tell the truth, I nearly forgot one of the duty; jury duty. And in this little test, you didn't get much cue from the examiner (who was a person manning the immigration counter in Canberra). The test was on the spot, oral test.
Apparently they've introduced a compulsory test, but now based more broadly on Australian history and such. I was a little curious as to what sort of things would be asked in this test. A TV program was offering a sample of them at their web site, so I gave it a go, and here's the summary of the results:
Total Score: 17/20, If you scored ...
Less than 12: With a score of below 60 percent, you have failed the exam. Real immigrants may be allowed one more try before being denied citizenship.
12 or more: Congratulations, you have passed the immigration test.
Well. I guess I passed this round of test. I didn't know that you had only two goes... I thought they were more of trivia questions. Of course it's linked to the TV program where they were asking people on the streets (Australians) to answer these questions, and of course showing those who couldn't answer the questions. They were all saying that if they didn't know the answers to these questions then why the new migrants should. Well. Guess what, I've been an Australian only for a relatively short time, but I knew enough... Not that I agree with this test or anything, but I did have to take a test, admittedly a different one, when I went through. Maybe people should be more interested in where they live, perhaps?
I went to see this movie today with a student from the lab, Mr. TS. Well. What can I say? When I hear the name Beowulf, I think of... Cluster computing? No, this movie is about the heroic epic kind. I knew of Beowulf, but didn't know what it was all about. I was persuaded to go because of Mr. TS's enthusiasm about this 3D movie stuff; you know the kind where you put a pair of funny glasses and supposedly you can see things in 3D. I must admit I was a little curious as to how much the 3D thing has advanced/evolved since the days of wearing green and red glasses. Is it still a requirement to see things in 3D? Anyway. We went off to the IMAX theatre down in Queen Street in the city after work. I've never been to an IMAX so I was kind of looking forward to it; even if that meant paying a little extra. When we bought our tickets, we were told that the seats are assigned, and assigned they were accordingly; but when we entered the theatre, probably only 1/6th of seats were occupied; leaving plenty for anyone to choose anywhere. We were assigned numbers 16 and 17, row K. Perhaps the theatre should number the seats? Could that be helpful in finding the right seats? We just sat down on seats in row K... And so, the movie began... It had its moments... I guess. I must admit I didn't enjoy it that much. They say the first impression is the last impression, and this was no different. First thing I thought was "bloody hell, they are just showing pre-rendered stuff." Mind you, it has made a real advance compared to what I saw in the Mummy returns; the Scorpion King in that movie was... Well... Something you might see in Quake2, and I guess that's the best they could do at that time. So... The best they can do now is something you might see in PS3 or Xbox360. 3D thing I guess was 3D, and was even in colour rather than green and red. But it just didn't look right sometimes; things looked blur, which is a tell-tale sign of the 3D-nization of images. I had to shift my eyes around to get rid of that. Not very comfortable. Anyway, as to the actual story content of the movie. I guess if you have read and understood or knew the epic before seeing the movie, don't go; it's very different, and you could be very disappointed. I checked what the epic is, and am glad that I didn't know the story before seeing the movie. If you haven't, and would like to see a movie that might be composed of pre-rendered characters from Xbox360 games, AND actually would like to spend money to see such a movie, then by all means, help yourselves. Then again, a lot of movies these days are just pre-rendered animation with voice-over... 1.5/5 stars from me.