Archive for December, 2005

Xmas in Singapore is…

Xmas tree

Excellent roast turkey from Cold Storage,

Frozen finger foods from Carrefour,

Relatives comparing which church has the longest Xmas service,

A lazy afternoon nap after a lazy long Xmas lunch,

Docile traffic on the expressways (assuming you stay away from downtown),

Sappy movies like The Princess Diaries and Sweet Home Alabama on TV,

Un-updated blogs, un-replied to emails, and

Enough Christmas food leftovers to eat for a week.

Add your own contributions in the comments?

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So what did you do today?

As TYM mentioned in the previous entry, not everyone celebrates Christmas. For myself, I’m probably going to join my family for a barbeque and spend the evening watching films and playing boardgames with my cousins. Now I’m just wishing that Santa would give me some snow and a nice warm fireplace.

I’m just wondering how everyone around the world spend their Christmas. Feel free to drop a comment and let everyone know how you celebrate Christmas in your country. It’ll be interesting.

And remember : if you drive, don’t drink. If you drink, please drink more.

Merry Xmas to one and all.

Do they know it’s Christmas?

I’ve noticed recently that a number of my friends don’t actually celebrate Xmas. My own experience is admittedly blinkered because I grew up in a Christian family where the big Christmas celebration was pretty much a warmup for the big Chinese New Year celebration: too much food (Western and local — we went through a phase in the ’80s of having fish head curry at Christmas lunch), too many children running around and playing/fighting with each other, and absolutely having to shake hands and mouth seasonal greetings to every single last relative, on pain of being labelled as a rude child otherwise.

We still have these huge family gatherings, and it seems that a number of my friends do too, either on Xmas Eve or Xmas Day — depending on the extent of one’s family, if anyone’s feuding with anyone, and if there are different in-laws to schedule around.

But a number of people I’ve talked to this year have been like, “Oh, we don’t really celebrate Xmas, so it’s like any ordinary day for us.” They wake up, eat some food, poke around online or with the TV, call friends to see what they’re up to — and then Xmas is over. And I don’t think it necessarily depends on whether one is Christian. I know non-Christian families that “celebrate” Xmas with as much razzmatazz as Christians (or perhaps even more) because they seize the festive excuse for rounding up the family and tormenting bonding with them.

Perhaps, once a person’s hit the working world, it’s a little harder to avoid “celebrating” Xmas because there’s the inevitable office parties, mandatory gift exchanges, and so on — so one gets sucked into, if nothing else, the commercial lip service paid to the holiday. So everyone has some Xmas shopping to do, even if it’s for people they don’t like/care/know anything about, and Xmas food goes flying off the shelves because everyone needs to cater some sort of shindig at the office to make sure they fulfil their staff welfare quota for the year.

Wow, that sounded more cynical than I thought I felt.

At any rate, my point, inasmuch as I had one when I punched in this entry’s title, was that despite all the glitter of Orchard Road and what our wacky Tourism Board would have you believe, there are a lot of people in Singapore who don’t celebrate Xmas in any manner or form, and who will spend tomorrow with their families and friends much as they do any Saturday or Sunday — which is something I doubt you would find reported or reflected very much in the usual media stories on the holiday. And that is all.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go get ready for an Xmas party…

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Grey’s Anatomy

Just saw it on the telly the other day. Grey’s Anatomy is coming to our shores.

I for one didn’t like ER when it was around, too serious, too much like the current CSI series. Grey’s Anatomy on the other hand is like Scrubs, but just a wee bit more serious.

The issues they deal with, life and death are spot on comparisons with what real life is like. Its the outlook on life, in a slightly laid back way. Highly recommended. Season 2 is running in the States for now.

Update: Airing tonight at 11pm. Monday 26th Dec, 2005.

iShop21

So like I had my Powerbook’s “home” key destroyed by a wayward external hard disk cable.

Had the most disappointing time at Applecentre@Orchard. The service wasn’t up to par plus the fact that it’ll cost me $250 bucks to replace the keyboard (because they don’t replace individual keys), so I grumbled my way down to iShop 21, the other huge Apple reseller.

I must say, they have the closest interior decor to those that can be found in Apple run stores in the States. Customer service definitely was as excellent as the newspapers described. They took my $220 for keyboard replacement and I didn’t feel the pinch as bad as what I might feel at Applecentre@Orchard.

My Powerbook only had to to sit in the shop for 2 days, compared to the estimated 4-5, which in my books is way good.

Huge thumbs up to iShop21.

Looking for a nice, decently-priced suit?

I find it incredibly difficult to find a nice and decent suit especially near town. Add in the problem of a limited budget means brand names like Gucci are often out of my league. Yeah, thats the sad life of a student…

Anyway, I digress. The point is, when I was walking around Bugis today (wha’ya expect? I work there everyday!) during lunch, I came across this nice shop which just opened for business in Waterloo Centre, Yes; THAT lime-green building near the humongous National Library, selling suits that are rather nice and VERY decently priced. ;) Seriously, I would had bought one if I really needed one at the moment.
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Hip-Hop New Year’s Eve Outdoor Countdown Party!!

Lights%20Show%20Impact

“Get the Funk Out!”

IT ALL GONNA HAPPEN ON 31st Dec AT Ngee Ann City Fountain Area!! I think NO hip hop party on SUCH A SCALE has been done before! IT MIGHT NOT TURN OUT FANTASTIC, BUT I BETCHA IT WILL BE MEMORABLE!!
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Uniquely Singapore

Spotted downtown today:

Uniquely Singapore

I’m not sure if someone at the Singapore Tourism Board overlooked a little thing the rest of us like to call irony, but isn’t it pretty strange to flaunt the lyrics for “The Christmas Song” on a banner sharing the “Uniquely Singapore” logo? Unless they meant to say that uniquely, in Singapore, we’ve swallowed the idea of the massive retail extravaganza that passes for Xmas, Jack Frost and all.

Anyway, it made me stop and laugh. And then take this picture.

Shopping hint: Marina Square doesn’t seem to be drawing that much of a crowd, perhaps because people don’t know what stores there are in the reopened shopping complex. So it’s as good a place as any to do one’s last-ditch Xmas shopping without being smothered or stampeded to bits by the crowds.

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Biohazard me.

So I got myself all wired up as part of a psychology experiment designed to monitor one’s heartrate verus your cognitive activiy. Complete with the wires which are very visible is a huge pouch which I have to carry with me containing the heartrate monitor and more wires.

Out of consideration for public awareness, I decided to take a taxi home. Didn’t want to make people around me nervous or something. I heard that one of the previous participants was stopped by the train station guys and was brought away for questioning. Well at least I know for sure that the Singapore authorities are keeping an alert for suspicious terrorist activity (read : boy walking ard with huge pouch with lots of wires connected to his body). It just kinda sucks for the poor guy who is already feeling kinda uncomfortable with wires on him to get hauled away for more questioning.

The Circus is in Town!

When I was around Bugis during lunch today, I spotted this!

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– Sorry for the poor quality as I only had my mobile phone with me at that time.
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