Tuesday, February 24, 2009

For Si Crack

Like a legendary BYC weekend. Gold. Si Crack's calling for the BYC.

Bring Back Jose

I love reading football banter. I can spend hours reading the Guardian, Soccernet and Football Scout. However, since Jose parted ways with Chelsea, the banter surrounding the Premiership has lost a bit of its edge.

The rivalry between Jose and SAF was the best daily soap around. Checking the news for the latest quotes from the managers was as necessary and regular as my morning coffee.

Jose departure has left a void in the football columns. As demonstrated by Rafa, none of the current managers in the league are able to foot it with SAF's trash talking ways. To add salt to the wound, the Jose / SAF rivalry has been temporarily renewed with the impending Champions League game between ManU and Inter. Unfortunately, this will only last until 11 March.

My solution is that Jose should return to the Premiership to manage City. This would undoubtedly improve the performance of City (which they need) and it would make it easier for Jose and SAF to exchange barbs, thereby increasing the entertainment value of the Premiership tenfold. It's a win, win situation as far as I can see.

For those not versed in the ways of The Special One, here are two recent quotes from the man himself and a classic to finish the post off.

Firstly, Jose on why Chelsea's performance has dipped since he left. "Why have Chelsea suffered so much since I left? Because I left." Via

Secondly, Jose on why ManU are performing well. "When I was in England, Chelsea was the best team between 2004-06. That is why we won two consecutive Premierships. Manchester United at that time realised they needed to be better to win it and, in my third season, that's what they did. And they went on to win the Champions League." Via

Lastly, on what people should think of him. "Please don't call me arrogant, but I'm European champion and I think I'm a special one." Via

Saturday, February 21, 2009

4 am, Hong Kong

I love the feeling of getting home around 4 am after a great night out. Your ears are still buzzing from the music, head is bit light from booze, stomach full from a greasy feed and legs aching from dancing. The city is quiet at this time. I like to take a moment to let the memories of the evening drift past:

It started quiet enough. Sushi across the road. Two old Japanese guys next us at the counter, with two young women in boots. Trish notes "she is speaking in Japanese, it could be his wife." One of the young ladies in boots escorts her dinner companion to the bathroom.

Mark and I are thinking of flagging the night away. We fire up the PS3 and battle through a few rounds of Street Fighter 2. We decide to have a few beers. Then four games of Winning Eleven - Germany versus Australia. Mark wins them all. We have a few more beers. Trish drinks a lychee with vodka. I put Wipeout on with the music turned right up. It's like a scene from Hackers. We're fired up now.

We walk into the gig and its like something from 1996: Concrete floor, speakers stacked up in the corner, a smoke machine and green laser going nuts.

Doc Scott is standing at the bar, like some geezer in a pub watching QPR play. I stop and mentioned I liked his set. Intalex is playing in the background. I mention that I saw him in NZ, more years ago than he would care to remember. He says they're going there next and that it probably was more years ago than he would care to remember.

The music is awesome and the mixing is excellent. We cheer. The crowd look at us like we're strange, than start cheering too. It's a good night.

4 am. I need a feed, the tequila shots are making me feel worse for wear. A greasy noodle will fix things up.

Back home. About to go to bed.

I like the city at this time of night.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

For Me

This post is for me. My good friend JP sent me an email last week, which read as follows: "Saw this and thought of you."

Totally awesome. There was a time in my life when I would have killed for an eight foot tall space marine. Fortunately, that time has passed: I now live in a shoebox sized apartment in Hong Kong, so I don't have anywhere to put it, unless I turfed sleepyanimal out of the bed and put it there ... but that would be weird.

Ok, confession time. I still have a half painted and half-customised squad of Black Templar space marines under my bed, along with a full Citadel paints colour pallet, customising knife and other accessories. I will probably never finish that squad, but I can't bear to throw them away. Maybe one day ...

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

For B

This video is for B. I know you're more of Marvel v Capcom guy, but when I saw this video, I immediately thought that you would: a) appreciate it; and b) understand what was going on.

The winning player in this video is Daigo Umehara, the number one SFIV player in Japan. For those not versed in the ways of Street Fighter, Diago (Ken) comes back from virtually zero health to perfectly parry every single hit of his opponent's super (impossibly hard) and then bust into his own combo to win the match.

Via Giant Bomb

Why do I point in photos?

I always have ...

... and probably always will.

The latest gadget

This is the funniest thing I've seen in ages.

Onion via Gizmodo)

The Interweb

The video below provides the complete animated history of the Internet in just 8 minutes. It's really interesting, I recommend giving it a whirl.


Sunday, February 8, 2009

For HK Ham

I'm doing a series of posts dedicated to things that remind me of my friends. This link is for HK Ham, who has a dislike for snakes. Try and peel this behemoth off AJ: Fossil of 43-foot super-snake Titanoboa found in Colombia.

LA Times via via

For Sprout

The subject of Big Picture's latest post, La Princesse, is my little sister's worst nightmare. This one is for you Sprout.

It's a great collection of pictures and I recommend checking out the the comments section, as Peter Carr is responding to question. Excellent stuff!

This second picture is for JP. I bet you thought the same thing as I did when I looked at it - Tachikoma.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

舞獅 - Lion dance

Monday was my first day back in the office after Chinese New Year and marked my first proper experience of giving out lai see or red packets. Lai see are a monetary gift, traditionally presented at social and family gatherings, such as weddings, or on holidays such as the CNY. The red color of the envelope symbolizes good luck and is supposed to ward off evil spirits (my lai see weren't actually red, oh well).

In Hong Kong, it is traditional after CNY to give people subordinate to you a red packet on your first day back in the office. I had been warned about this and arrived at work prepared with a special lai see for my secretary and thirty red packets for other staff I work with (more than enough I thought). What I had not been warned about were the hordes of marauding staff that seek you out at your desk in packs to collect their lai see. I ended the day with only two lai see left! I will be more prepared next year.

To ensure a lucky start to the year, the office had arranged for a 舞獅 or Lion dance. The lion dance is performed to exorcise evil spirits and to summon luck and fortune. The performance began with the Hoi Gong or eye dotting, which is a traditional ceremony to bless and awaken the spirit of the lion. Two of our senior partners were invited to open the eyes of the lions by dotting the lion with red ink. The dotting was carried out to the soft beat of a drum, but once the dotting was completed the drums, gong and cymbal all broke into life and the lions began their dance.

The next part of the dance involved 採青 or picking the greens. Traditionally a lai see is tied to a head of lettuce and hung from the front door of the business. Since our office doesn't have a front door, the head of lettuce was hung in the lift foyer. As part of the dance, the lions consumed the lettuce and then showered the audience with streamers (which I think is meant to represent the lettuce leaves).

The lion dance then moved around our floor. A lion would stop at any desk that had a red packets hanging above it to consume the red packets and grant luck to the area (and if you ask nicely even stop for a photo). The office was quite a sight with red packets hanging above everyone's desks. Below is a picture of the lion providing a bit of luck to my desk.


I came across this sign while hiking near Sai Kung.