Monday, 19 October 2015

The SG Haze: Why Can't the SG Government Do Something?!

When Malaysia wanted to raise water costs, Singapore government quickly built a desalination plant so that we wouldn't be dependent on Malaysia. We would be able to feed our own needs.

Now with these Indonesian fires, why can't the Singapore government build something or buy something that will stop this haze on our side?!  It doesn't  matter if stupid Indonesia burns year after year. We cannot control what they do. But we can control what we can do.

Build some kind of shield that closes whenever there is haze. Figure out a way to make it work. Singapore government is very rich, right? Then think, buy &/build whatever that will work!!

What is the government for?

Or build/buy something that will deflect the haze such that Singapore island is protected every time there is haze.

Indonesia & Malaysia can choke themselves off. But Singapore's air will be clean & clear.

[Then again, do we need the air to be clean & clear? Solving the haze is for Singaporeans' benefit, not for the foreigners'. Unfortunately, the foreigners benefit.

The haze is actually in our favor against the foreigners. But the haze problem & foreigners problem are two different matters. Why should we put up with choking haze just so the foreigners will suffer along?

In fact, the haze problem, foreigners problem & the SG government letting in the foreigners are 3 different issues that need to be separately solved.

Frankly, why does the haze bother me? Because unlike "rich government people", I can't fly to somewhere else. Why don't foreigners in Singapore fly to somewhere else?]

Thursday, 15 October 2015

Vintage/Retro Typewriters (What's Great About Them?)

Friday 16 October. 1:49 p.m.

Well, they aren't exactly that vintage. Some years ago (like more than 10 years ago), I was still using an old typewriter & the lousy keys would entangle & jam up & I would have to undo them with my fingers to be able to type again, all the time.

That typewriter in its black plastic case (portable, clumsy)... was sold to a Karang Guni man.  Can't remember how much that lousy Karang Guni man paid me. I didn't know who to go for repairs. It was a newer model of old typewriters, that's why it was so bad. After that, they stopped making.

The keys were lightweight, flimsy metal strips, flying & entangling. The keys had to be hammered hard with fingertips. It made a lousy, thin metal noise of poor quality. Not careful & your finger will slip into the space between the keys. The effort to push the damn roller back to start at every line of the page & the pull of the handle to go to next line.

The brand was... I can't remember. Neither do I recall how or where I acquired it.  I used it for a while, kept it for a while. I don't throw away my things.

After that, an electric typewriter was purchased for me. Panasonic? Well, it was good & so high speed, like a machine gun with just a press of one key (without lifting the finger).  No more entangling keys, black & oily, no more changing of greasy black & red ribbon reels.

The reason I'm typing this (now on my laptop), is that I am now aware of a shop that does repairs of ancient typewriters. That shop is at Katong & while I won't be visiting it any time soon, it got me curious.

Then I just read a female blogger who sounds like a "vintage" typewriter is so goddamn new to her (& she don't look young enough not to know about such typewriters.). She don't even have her own opinion of what's so great about such a typewriter & need to copy & paste someone else's opinion.

I'll tell you, in my opinion, not from copy & paste, what's so great about such ancient typewriters.

I've always liked their look. Very Steam Punk. You know steam punk? It's odd that such a large instrument is used to type small things. The small words don't match the large size of the instrument used to type them. But that's not quite it.

There's something about these antique typewriters that ... what's the right word... "make" me look.  I stare. I'm interested & would like to type on them. But I also know the disadvantages in using them & in this era, they are very expensive to buy. The expense alone, I cannot afford. So, I can only look.

At the same time, I don't want them to just sit there & be just a novelty in a corner. These are functioning instruments for a greater purpose that they were made for. To reduce them into just a novelty is wrong.

Therefore, I won't buy a typewriter that isn't functioning anymore. If I had one, I will send it for repair. If I can afford the cost of repair.

Of course the laptop/modern keyboard is better for many reasons, that's why the ancient typewriter became extinct.

But what is it that makes it superior to modern keyboards?

The feel. The hammering. And as that female blogger said, the "ding!" when you reach the end of the roller (a.k.a. page margin). Other than that...

I think I go for the look. The more steam punk, the more interesting. I wouldn't call it beautiful. Made by man, no sense of aesthetics. Rather crudely made.

I didn't even know they had different fonts back then. Wow.  I have only seen the same old boring font & font size. Maybe I need to get to know more ancient typewriters to know them better.

Maybe some people like the ink missing from certain curves of a letter. But I like mine solid black.

I guess I do like the old typed font style. Even now when typing my novel on laptop, I select the old typewriter font & size. Back when I was typing on the old typewriter, I was typing out the short stories that I wrote in pencil on paper.

Come to think... looking at those vintage typewriters that people on Carousell are selling, I think if I had money, I will collect as many of these typewriters as possible. What for? Seriously, I don't know. Just hoarding. Put each one on a pedestal with lights so that when people come, can see them. Like a museum.

Eh... then again, didn't I say I want them to be functional? Hmm... Well, occasionally, I'll type different pages of my work on each of them. Then I can say I typed this page on this 1920s typewriter & that page on that very first typewriter ever invented.  So, you're not just holding a piece of work but a whole heavy body of antique typewriters that wrote it. Cool eh?

I  remember I was once at a flea market where I saw a vintage typewriter & asked the male seller how much it cost. He said $150 or around that price. I was quite surprised by the high price. Would have liked to purchase it but had to walk away.  That was when I was still quite young. Maybe teenager? I was out with my parents & while they were ahead or somewhere around, I stayed to ask this man. He wasn't friendly, didn't smile. I guess he thought I couldn't afford it. 

Since then, even now, I still cannot afford it...

Friday, 9 October 2015

Foreigners in Singapore (Indonesians/Filipinos) Messing Up Tactic In SBS Bus

Shit foreigners: Behave yourself when you're in other people's country.

Bus #131. At about 3.30p.m. A few enter through the back door & just sit down, pretend they are riding a tour bus.  Several more enter through the front door, distracting the bus driver so that the whole bus becomes so noisy & confusing, nobody knows who paid & who didn't.

My bro tried getting off but was unable to because the card reader wouldn't allow him to tap out.  Even though he called for the driver's attention, the driver didn't hear or zoned out & just closed the doors & drove off, causing bro to miss his stop.

Bro exploded & scolded those goddamn foreigners & their "tour guide". Everyone kept quiet because every word that he said was true. They are goddamn foreigners. They went up the back instead of the front, messed up the card reader such that he couldn't tap out, causing him to miss his stop.

Their tour guide gave the excuse that they didn't know. Bro said "Use your eyes! See people going up the front, then go up the front. Do you see people going up the back?!".   

He told me they did it on purpose. When they came up the bus, their faces had mischievous looks. "They looked barbaric. Like they came out of East Timor or they are Orang Laut.".

They wanted to ride for free.  I heard what happened when he came home.

These shitty foreigners are so thick-skinned. They will do it again on another bus.

I find that those uneducated foreigners are very noisy when they board buses. They think they own the place. Look at the way they sit & talk.

That's the pathetic mentality of these peasant foreigners in any country.  No education, no money, but that don't stop them from making a show of themselves in public.  If it happened in Japan, those Japanese will be so appalled.

Every time I see these foreigners, I think why don't they do it in the Singapore's Prime Minister's house? Park themselves outside his porch, sit on his garden, his estate. Spread their mats & picnic there. Go inside & mess up his toilets. Eat the food in his fridges. Talk loudly along the corridors of his house, lie down everywhere, sit everywhere like they own the place.

See when that happens, whether he will stop foreigners from coming into Singapore or will he still welcome them saying "We need them". You need them parking on your grass meh?

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

TWG Tea Pesticides Residues & Eu Yan Sang

Now this is interesting. I just came upon this while searching for pesticides testing in Singapore.

So you love tea? Well, even some organic teas have pesticides residues, as tested in Canada.

In the TWG article, you can obviously hear the sour TWG defensive voice against their tea being rejected. Rejection hurts, doesn't it?

Luckily, I stopped drinking TWG teas a long time ago because of their expensive prices for not organic & weak teas.  Their Chamomile tea is the worst I've ever drank & in such horrid cloth bags that don't enhance the flavor or taste. Also, I dislike that they hire Filipino women (at Takashimaya) who pose for the money but know nothing else.

Let's take at look at what the TWG article says:

"Complicating the issue is how different territories and countries have different tests that incoming agricultural products are put through, and how tests are expensive and impossible to do for every one of the 300 pesticides in existence....
Unfortunately, we cannot test for every single chemical in the world in every batch. "

It means they let some pesticides get into your TWG tea because nobody cares to test for "every single chemical in the world". TWG only cares for your money.

"Another issue is how tea leaves in Taiwan are tested exactly like fruits and vegetables, as if they are going to be chewed and swallowed. However, residue concentrations would be indefinitely diluted in an infusion form, which is how teas are usually drunk, she added."
It means that it is true TWG teas contain pesticides. But hey, it's going to be diluted, so that's all right. Additionally, she didn't read this article which says that even at low concentrations, these pesticides have adverse effects on the body (of course).

"A year ago, mainboard-listed traditional Chinese medicine retailer Eu Yan Sang had to reassure customers and investors after a US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) alert warned of a lead-poisoning risk from its best-selling "Bo Ying Compound" product.

Eu Yan Sang said then that varying health standards were in force in different territories, and that the product in the US health scare was made in Hong Kong and meant only for sale there."
It means what is not allowed in one country is allowed in another, depending on which is more lax. Hong Kong got the lead but it was supposedly specially made for them.

Incidentally, even honey (organic or not) is not safe.

(Now let me check my e-mail for that lousy pesticides testing company I contacted previously, so that I can avoid it. *checks* It was HSA. It was a foreigner who replied. Surname "Chung". Gave some brainless reply that they don't test for pesticides, but they can give me a quotation for what they can do. Crazy. What else can they possibly do if they can't test for pesticides? Test for "quality"??).