Beer bong, beer bong…don't drink too slow!

The semester has ended. I’ve handed in my last assignment today and I have one
more week till my first exam on the 1/11. In light of that, I’ve decided to celebrate (legally) by
having a couple of beers. I leave the illegal stuff for Mr. Foaf, my uhm…friend. No, I wasn’t
going to say alter ego, dammit. I’m not that far gone. =D Anyway, as I was walking to uni today, I
saw a lot of men in suits with ear pieces at the research department car park. Found out later from
the radio in the shuttle bus that Premier Steve Bracks was present at the Ceremony of Reflection
and Respect of the Monash shooting victims. I also heard that the shooting victims have been
awarded honors degree posthumously. A nice touch, that.

Anyway, I’ve finally been reviewed at The Weblog Review. Wendy [twodolla.org], the reviewer, gave me a 2.5/5.0. It’s
not a high score, but she’s honest in her review and she said some positive things too, so I
can’t help but feel pleased. Here’s the review in it’s entirety:

Huai’s a student in Melbourne who started up his weblog
in April of 2002. Since then, sixthseal.com has been very consistently updated with the happenings
of Huai.

The site’s design is very basic. There’s a light blue table on the left with the naviagation
portion of the menu, which is very simple to use. And to the right is the weblog. The main page
features a photo of the day (POTD) at the top of the page. It’s not exactly a photo of the day,
however, but more like a photo of the week. That’s not really a major concern of mine, but I could
certainly see how readers could get disappointed with the photo not being updated daily like one
would assume.

The majority of the entries are simple to read updates of what’s going on in Huai’s life – dorm
life, his social life, how his classes are going, etc. It’s fun to read through the progress of the
school year and the entertaining mishaps that get written about.

A nice touch to this weblog was the introduction of posting pictures from time to time. While the
POTD might not be updated on a regular basis, Huai does a good job of peppering in pictures that
he’s taken with his digital camera throughout a good portion of his entries. Doing that breaks up
the constant text and gives the readers something more than just words.

Is this a site I’d visit again? Personally, no. Is it one I’d suggest to those in college perhaps
experiencing the same thing that Huai is going through? Certainly. And I’d even go as far as saying
you should at least check it out once – perhaps you’ll find the connection that makes you want to
keep coming back.

This site was reviewed on 2002-10-20 by Wendy.
They felt this site belonged in the Personal category.
Wendy felt that sixthseal.com deserved a rating of 2.5.

Or you can check it out here [theweblogreview.com]. Oh, and
my name is Huai Bin. You don’t truncate Chinese names like that. :)

Premium beer review
Beer #1 Witbier

frothy…had to catch the froth before it overflows from the neck of the
bottle
tastes urm, tasteless
very light beer taste
tastes like water actually
the head stays throughout the drinking session in the bottle
doesn’t dissipate
at 5.0 , gives a mild kick when downed on a semi full stomach
marketed as a premium (traditional belgian style – oh la di dah) beer
cost me A$11.99 for a 6 pack
the first bottle was agitated a little though
second bottle just had a nice gas escaping slowly and then a nice heady froth on top

Beer #2 Sapporo (Japanese Import)

frothed up something wicked when i opened it. no, i did not agitate it. it’s an easy to drink
and rather tasteless beer. i had it pretty chilled though. maybe a slight bitter aftertaste and
thats it. but don’t take my word for it, my tastebuds are screwed. the beer is easy to hold too.
slightly contoured (or is that tapered?) at the bottom, which fits the hand nicely. the shiny
aluminum conducts the cold nicely too. and there’s just something good about holding a large can of
beer. it’s twice the size of normal beer cans, and it holds 650 ml of 5% alcohol beer. i forgot
what i paid for it, but it isn’t cheap. its somewhere around A$7. take note that beer here is cheap
compared to Malaysia.

Beer #3 Redback

curses. i’ve already typed a review but accidentaly clicked no when it asked me whether i wanted
to save. anyway, i’m try to recall the best i can from my (foggy) memory. this local premium beer
(oh, la di dah) is made from malted wheat and brewed in matilda bay,western australia. it weighs in
at a dismal 4.7 % alcohol by volume. the 6-pakcs looks rather pretentious, with wood colored
packaging and stickers (with gothic writing, no less) over all the caps. it tastes strangely
“heavy” like milk or milo but did not have an objectionable taste or aftertaste. the beer seems
rather malty, but did not have a characteristic bite of malty beers. i’ve had malt milkshakes that
were much more bitter than this nice beer here. the heaviness is strangely pleasing and satisfying.
however, this thing here did not have a twist off cap. wtf? i thought twist off caps are standard
for local brewed beers. i tried twisting the cap off anyway, but that did not acheieve anything
other than give me bottle cap shaped grooves in my hand. i tried prying the cap off with my key,
but that’s going to take too long. luckily, i bought a nail clipper today and peering over, noticed
that it has a bottle opener. mmm…

Well….all that beer made me sprout this gem here:

Silencer® (9:45 PM) :
u hungry?
sixthseal.com (9:46 PM) :
nah i drank a lot of beer
burp

Drop and roll

The dining hall of the Halls of Residence sometimes offer filled bread rolls
for 50 c during dinner. These are the leftover ones from lunch and they usually go for A$2.85, but
the price is marked down to 50 c during dinner. My calculator tells me that’s a 82.46% discount.
Heh. They taste the same as they do during lunch anyway.

Well, I had a Simpsons marathon last night and I had an Initial D marathon
today. Wah lau…I’m going to fail if this keeps up. =D

Link: National day of mourning
in honor of the Bali bombings
[theage.com.au]

A minute’s silence to be observed at noon Australian Eastern Standard
Time.

Brass Monkeys Consulting

My network connection was down for practically the whole day yesterday. Thus,
I have decided to sleep early and wake up early today to prepare for the final ITPM presentation. I
woke up bright an early at 8 am and headed down to my campus to rehearse with my other team
members:

Group 702: Brass Monkeys Consulting

From left: Poh Huai Bin, Dan Chandrasoma, Sheralyn D’Rose, Bela Farbas

I think we did pretty well in the presentation, but there was a group with an
impressively feature packed product though. Good thing the marks are not scaled…at least I hope
they’re not. =D Anyway, I had to wake up early yesterday too. It seems that my National [national.com.au] bank account has been
overdraft to the amount of A$11.12 (don’t ask me why a savings account can be over drafted).
Since I already have a Commonwealth bank account (my main account now), I’ve
decided to close the National one. The only branch around here is in Clayton town. There was one
in the campus center last time, but it has closed and the space is now occupied by the Business
Systems laboratory.

Well, I also got to eat the Beef Salsa Burger, which is part of McDonald’s
ever changing New Tastes Menu
[mcdonalds.com.au]. It tasted like the old Italian Romano Burger (part of their Tastes of the
World Menu) to me, and the burger is rather small-ish too. I’ll go for a Big Mac or Filet-O-Fish
over it any day.

Link of the day: Firebugs threaten mosque
attacks
[theage.com.au]

I knew this was going to happen sooner or later.

I feel liberated

I finally managed to get a haircut today. It only cost A$17, which is
pretty cheap over here. I went to Monash Hair Salon at the campus center.
Anyway, I watched a HK movie on VCD just now. It was the 2002 Chinese New
Year movie by Andy Lau and Gigi Leung. I don’t know the name, but it’s
about mahjong. The plot is predictable, but that’s not the point. It’s a
Chinese New Year movie, it’s supposed to be a feel good movie, not one
where you can endlessly debate the intricacies that motivated the main
protagonist. I like Gigi Leung before the breast augmentation surgery (in
the movie). She seemed rather top heavy after that. Heh. I want to go home
for Chinese New Year. Update: The movie is called Lik Goo Lik Goo San Nin
Choi (Fatt Choi Spirit). Man, that rice bit was funny. =D

Reading:
Calculating God by Robert J. Sawyer
(A damned (damn?) good book)

Mun Fun with lots of soy sauce and pepper

I had dinner at Wah Kee today with Adrian and Jun Wei. I’ve been craving
after their Combination Mun Fun with heaps of soy sauce and pepper.
Basically, it’s a combo of chicken, beef (?), char siew, squid, prawns and
vegies cooked in a tasteless sauce (hence the soy and pepper part). I had
some short soup too. Short soup is what they call wonton soup here. Later
we headed over to Jun Wei’s house, where he has an autographed photo of
Stephanie Sun when she was in her youth. Heh. Nah, actually it is a photo
of his girlfriend, but she sure looks like Stephanie Sun in that photo.
Anyway, I’ve got heaps of work to do before tomorrow. I’m sleepy and I’m
demoralized. End of semester sucks. And I can’t even look forward to going
back because I’m not going back during the summer vacations. I have to
stay back because IE runs for two consecutive semesters. Shit.

Link of the day:

Bali Bombing Full Coverage
[theage.com.au]

*cough* *sneeze* *clears throat*

I think I’ve caught the flu. Or it could be the asbestos and lead fibers
I’ve been breathing in for the past week. I’m relegated to a short life of
mental retardation, doomed to die of lung cancer. Roberts Hall was
opened in 1971, so it’s safe to assume that the walls are built solely with
asbestos (and plenty of manpower) and slathered with some good old lead
based paint to hold it together. There was some work done on my ceiling
one week ago to fix my ceiling light. The electricians replaced the entire
housing and left my carpet strewed with debris of dubious origin. Being
somewhat of a hypochondriac, I find myself waking up with a sore throat,
stuffy sinuses, and significantly reduced mental capabilities. The last
one might be psychosomatic though. =D Anyway, I went to the operations
office today to ask whether the ceilings have asbestos in them. The
receptionist was quite taken aback by my question. Heh.

Me: There is asbestos in the ceilings of Roberts Hall, isn’t there?

Receptionist: (startled) I’m not sure…why would you think that?

Me: (describes my symptoms, both real and imagined =D)

Receptionist: Oh dear, let me get someone better qualified to answer that
question.

(The receptionist goes into the office and
gets the director)

Director: Hello there. How can I help you?

Me: Well, I’m concerned that the Roberts Hall ceilings contain asbestos.
There was some work done on my ceiling which left a lot of dust and debris
and I’ve been having respiratory problems after breathing it in.

Director: (phrasing his words carefully) Well…I’m not familiar with the
architectural aspects of Roberts Hall, but I would think that there isn’t
any asbestos in the structure. What does the dust look like?

Me: It looks like long, thin fibers. It doesn’t seem to break easily.

Director: (guardedly) Oh…hmm…I think that might be the spray on
concrete they use to coat the ceiling. I’ll check and get right back to
you. Do you want to leave a contact number?

Me: (gives my cell phone number)

Director: Thank you. I’ll personally get back to you when I know.

Hmm…that conversation wasn’t reassuring at all. I didn’t think about the
lead issue until later though. I spent the better part of the evening
vacuuming my room and washing my bedsheets. I know that vacuuming will
stir up the particles and that’s more dangerous since it will be easy to
breath it in, but my floor is saturated with that shit anyway and walking
alone will disturb the fibers. Damned if I do, damned if I don’t.

I spilled detergent powder in front of my door just after I returned the
vacuum cleaner. Wonderful.

……

I’m sleepy. I haven’t had a good night’s sleep in two days and last night
was even worse. I couldn’t sleep at first, and when I finally thought I
might be able to, I laid down on the bed for two hours – but still no
sleep came to me. The dawn light that filtered through my blinds didn’t
help either. I like to sleep in absolute darkness. To make matters worse,
the lawnmower man came at the UNGODLY hour of 8:30 am and started to mow
the fucking lawn. I haven’t started to sleep at that point and the noise
from the lawnmowers (it the kind you drive) made it really hard to sleep.
I tried pulling my bedsheets over one ear and stuffing the other ear with
my pillow, but that didn’t help much. As if things couldn’t get any worse,
I had to field several phone calls informing me that a client meeting is
scheduled today. Joy. Okay, enough bitching. :)

Springvale train station

Anyway, I headed down to Springvale today to see if they still have any
Item X’s in stock. It should be noted that the Store X in Springvale is
nowhere near the town center. There is quite a significant traveling
distance involved too. However, all is not in vain, for they had one last
Item X in stock. =D They were actually holding it for another person, but
the manager decided to sell it to me anyway. That’s good then.
Hmm…anyway, is it just me, or does Springvale look dodgier and dodgier
every time I go there? Puzzling.

Link of the day:

Korean man dies after computer games binge
[theage.com.au]

FUD. People don’t die from playing computer games non-stop for 86 hours.
People die from heart attacks while ingesting stimulants. Notice that he
died in the toilet. My…uh, friend told me that it’s common for people on
methamphetamines or similar stimulants to experience constipation or

oliguria
(got this word from my med school sister). This friend of
mine once tried to force himself to take a piss coz he hasn’t done so for
quite a while and said he nearly passed out. He felt a surge of blood
going to his head and his heart started to pound really fast, and he
thought he was about to kick the bucket there and then. Stimulants
increase blood pressure and makes your heart work harder. People generally
don’t stay up for 86 hours non-stop without stimulants. He died with a
felafel in his hand. I mean, he died in the toilet. Do the math. Oh, and
don’t force yourself to piss while on meth. =D

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