Monday, July 27, 2015

Cavalock and The Blue and Grey Menagerie

It's always a lovely day when we get the little oven in our tiny apartment kitchen baking again! Blue dinosaur chocolate cookies! A gift for a little boy's birthday party over the weekend. Even though every piece was individually hand-painted, I dare say it was a relatively easy task for the Baker at Home.

You would probably have seen these bird pix on my Facebook a couple weeks ago. A rather majestic resident of our Botanic Gardens that my 83-year-old Dad has been stalking for awhile now. This lone grey-headed eagle can be seen swooping down for his breakfast on most mornings.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Cavalock and The Schoolgirl Coaster Convention

Thanks to the Baker in the House, we managed to get a lunch table at current hip Japanese joint, Kanda Wadatsumi at Tras Street. After more than a few rave reviews in the press and online, I can understand why the place is pretty crowded. Had the unagi set and it was definitely worth every S$30 of it and I topped up S$8 for the appetiser and black sesame ice-cream. Now all this also comes with a little kettle of broth that you are supposed to add to the rice in a separate bowl, and it all tastes really good together. Another highlight was the chawanmushi that came crowned with a dollop of heavenly uni.

And in other news, we finally decided to use the pair of eye-catching Japanese schoolgirl coasters we got form Tokyo earlier this year. Not that we were expecting guests or anything in our tiny apartment, I just wanted to crack them open. Pretty neat, uh?

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Cavalock and The Hashtag Heresy

How I wish I could say that the reason for the infrequent posts is that I'm off jet-setting around the world. The truth is things have been frightfully dreary of late although I must admit I'm having slight difficulty in recollecting the events of the last few weeks. Let's see now, I am still caught up in the seemingly never-ending process of clearing the old family home as well as another of my late uncle's apartment. Which leads me to this re-discovery I made not too long ago, a most intriguing pair of stone goldfishes from my childhood.

I vividly recall toying with them when I was a mere toddler. Well, such as picking them up from the desk, spinning them (gently) around and imagining them swimming in the air I suppose. I must admit I have no idea how much they are worth. The pair have been in the family for as long as I can remember. I'm also absolutely in the dark as to what kind of stone they are as I'm positive there's a proper name to the material too. It's not jade or marble but it has a nice smooth touch and feel to it. And as you can see in the final pix, there's a name or inscription at the bottom of one of the goldfishes. I suppose my only hope is that the name belongs to a famous Chinese craftsman and ... ka-ching!!! ;)

So what else have I been up to? Finished reading The Scarlet Gospels by Clive Barker and binge-watched Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell as well as the third (and thankfully final) season of The Following. Penned a short Cthulhu-inspired horror story and sent the draft out, still waiting for some feedback. I certainly hope the reason for the lack of response isn't a reflection of how abysmal they found the tale to be. 

Of cos, the board gaming evenings are still a regular occurrence, at least twice a week. To be honest, the reason why I'm recounting all this escapes me. Perhaps I am merely engaging in this little mental exercise simply to justify my last couple of weeks' existence?

It's less than a month till our National Day and you know what that means! Keeping a decade-long tradition alive, here's this year's snapshot of the washpole patriot!

Oh yes, I did spend some time recently on social media or Facebook to be exact. I am quite puzzled by the overwhelming use of hashtags in more than a few of my ex-colleagues' posts. I just do not understand the need to punctuate your 3, 4-word post with up to over thirty hashtags. Among the multitude of hashtags in that single one-sentence post, I spotted the hashtags 'excited' and 'Italy'. Wouldn't it be much more eloquent to write something like "We are so excited to finally be in Italy"? How difficult was that or did they forgot how to use nouns and pronouns? Is this a thing now that people use hashtags instead of proper grammar?

There are times when it's just a mountain of infuriating hashtags, no sentences at all. It's not unlike some maddening puzzle where one tries to make sense of the message by adding adjectives, pronouns and punctuation. I honestly don't know if all these hashtags is pure laziness or some new hip thing.

Sunday, July 05, 2015

Cavalock and The Wart-Faced Rant

So the guys and I decided to "forfeit"a night of analog gaming and head out for a Japanese dinner instead. It was most fortunate that one of us stumbled upon Shabuyaki Kazuya along Stanley Street earlier and made reservations for the night. By day, they be serving ramen but when the sun sets, it's a meat joint and a pretty damn good one too. You get to grill the marinated meat on a little hot plate above the hotpot. Would definitely recommend the S$14 beef tongue platter (2nd pix below) and the S$6 braised Wagyu beef (last pix).

Hanging out with the guys had me thinking bout a scene I witnessed a couple days ago in my neighbourhood. Saw two older uncles, one Indian and the other Chinese, probably in their 50s running into each other. The Indian uncle greeted his Chinese friend with a loud "Oi towkay!" followed by several dialect phrases that some might find mildly offensive, and the Chinese uncle acknowledged it with an equally boisterous greeting delivered in a mocking Indian accent, complete with head shaking gesture! And guess what, the two older gentlemen laughed off! No one was offended at all. Now imagine something like that happening to a younger pair or even online. The politically-correct crowd would go apeshit over it. Would our local media portray such a scene in their TV dramas even though it's a daily fact of life? Hell no! How I wish folks today would be more like the two uncles and not be so easily offended bout stuff.

I also found out recently that you can't use the word 'ugly' anymore. You can't use it to describe people or things at all cos feelings would get hurt and folks would get offended. A word I learnt in school, used a gazillion times is now considered derogatory by some. I must have missed the memo on us turning into a coddling society. Now I'm just extremely curious as to how children's picture books are defining the word "ugly" and what pictures they use to illustrate it. I recall it was a sad-faced guy with warts in my school book. So did the Society of Wart-Faced Gentlemen protested against that?

Check this out too, apparently it's politically incorrect to call someone "fat and ugly" but it's perfectly fine to describe the same person as "morbidly obese" cos the latter is an official medical definition. Seriously, doesn't "morbid" and "obese" sound a lot worse?

OK, rant over.

All right, back to more fun stuff. Dropped by my favourite supermarket Meidi-Ya as usual and spotted some new groceries. Well, they are new to me as it has been ages since I was there. There's crisps, beer, Disney pasta, all good stuff to make you fa... well, ... pick your own definition. ;)