Saturday, February 28, 2009

Copycat

These are my rubber ballerina flat shoes. I wanted something Crocs-like and found these at Parkson Pavillion on our previous trip to KL. The brand is called Sole Lovers ( I like this name) and it cost 69.90 - half the price of their reptile counterpart, but not actually the same design.

A few weeks ago, I was walking past Bata in Wisma Merdeka and I saw.. these exact same shoes there. Same design, same rubber material, no brand label though but they did also have it in the other various colours that I saw in KL. I flipped the shoe to check on its price and guess how much it cost? RM19.90!!

This just beckoned me to think, can't any good idea or design be appreciated without being copied hands down, then mass produced at a fraction of the cost! Well, for all I know..maybe Sole Lovers actually sold this design to Bata and made lotsa dough in the process. Or maybe Sole Lovers copied that idea from someone else? But what about originality? Intellectual property? Trademark? There is no doubt that there is so much of these semi-ori or ciplak designs in our market - everything from clothes to CDs to handbags to iPods (I even saw these ciplak brands that also called their product with the same name, I think they can and should be liable to legal action for that!). And I have my own experience too.

The first week that we came out with our Coffee News paper, I received a call from someone whom I thought was interested to advertise with us. I set up a meeting with him but was soon surprised when he told me that he actually wanted me to help him produce a similar paper for his business. Using the same style and format. He wanted to put in news about his restaurants and other services, supposedly news for tourist, local news, etc. And he mentioned that I could double my income by helping him do that. What really offended me was when he said that some of the things in our paper was actually rubbish..yes, he said this actual word. He said that people wouldn't want to read horoscopes or do puzzles or read quotes. And the fact that we didn't allow restaurants to advertise was also rubbish and wrong according to him. Hmmph! I couldn't believe it. Of course, I told him no. I did have a no competition clause in my agreement that said I couldn't be part of any similar publication. Plus, I really didn't like the idea and the guy himself. He was so full of it. So that was that. He asked me to think about it but really, I had made my mind there and then. He asked me to call him but I never talked to him again after that. I saw him a couple of times in KK and I just thought 'eerrghhh!'

But it doesn't end there. About a month after that, I was delivering our paper and guess what I saw? A paper, similar style, similar format, similar colour and font and it was called..Berita Lanun (translation). And they even tried to put their paper in our special stands. Errghhhh! I was disgusted. There it was, a copycat of our publication!! I met someone who later told me that they thought our papers were from the same publishers, that we worked together. Eeeeeee! No way man! Sunggoh marah. But I didn't want to confront the guy. When we started our paper, we had been warned about possible copycat attempts because there have been many for the past years. Our paper's franchise has been around for more than 20 years, it was properly researched, it has been trademarked, it has a strong foundation. I told our head office about the Berita Lanun, sent them a copy but was told that they shouldn't be a threat. And indeed they weren't.

I took solace that their paper was full of grammatical mistakes, the writing was bad. The formatting was off and they didn't really have any solid content. In one of their edition, I clearly remember til now, they mentioned something about sitting on the waterfront and trying to spot the stupid tourist that forgot to use sunblock. Yes, really! They used the word stupid. I was like OMG! Maybe they were trying to be funny but .. how can you call the very reader you are trying to attract as stupid. THAT was stupid! Hah! I had the last laugh... Berita Lanun lasted for three editions only. It is no more now. And whenever I see the name of their restaurant anywhere, I still get all riled up. If I run into that guy again, I wish I'd have the guts to laugh in his face... but I won't. I love this story though, gives me a sense of accomplishment that we beat them out without even having to try to. Because they never had a good foundation in the first place.

So I guess there's no avoiding it. If something is good, someone is bound to try and copy it. It is sad though. Someone put their heart and soul and guts into coming up with that thing in the first place and someone else can just go and copy it blind? This is the reason why I don't believe in buying pirated music or movies (anymore). People made an effort producing those, they should be appreciated. I do believe though that every good thing comes with an intention and a story behind it, so the copycat versions will never have this and so they will never be the complete thing.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Kimchi, Anyone??

Ok, I know the title alone sudah membuatkan 1 orang terfikir-fikir and terliur.. :) siapakah itu ya? Hehe...

Friends in KK, if you love Korean food then you should go down to SSAM Cafe in Wawasan Plaza in this next 4 weeks! I spoke to the owner/chef yesterday and he confirmed to me that they will be closing down at the end of March. Tsk tsk... I told him I was sad and knew a few friends who would miss his food too. The Beef DoSiRak itu sunggoh sedap kan?? And I like the BiBimBap too, very fresh and healthy. So yeah, go down there while you still got the chance. I want to! Anyone with me??

The Reader

I remember in the movie Sabrina (the one with Harrison Ford and Julia Ormond), Sabrina said that she admired her dad because he took up a job as a driver so that he could have lots of time to read. I think that's just beautiful. I sometimes look at people who work in certain places and think, hmm...if I had that job, I'd probably spend most of that time reading away. Like, those people who work as cashiers in car park booths, what do they do all day? If they had wi-fi or plug in broadband modems in there, then woohoo for them! If not....tak ke boring, not to mention claustrophobic being in there all day. And yeah, if like Sabrina's dad, you worked as a driver..people might think you just laze out waiting in the car but all that waiting time can actually be spent reading and bettering yourself. I don't know if many drivers here read though...

Yeah, I actually have tonnes of books I wish I could read all day, everyday. But reading now seems to be a pleasure, in stolen moments only. I see The Secret and I want to read it again, but then there's Michael Gerber's E-Myth Revisited that I've wanted to read for quite some time now. I want to read Half Blood Prince again before the movie comes out, and sitting right next to it is Phil Keoghan's No Opportunity Wasted.. *Sigh*

I've been reading Paulo Coelho's Like The Flowing River, before going to bed at night. This one I can do because it is actually a collection of short essays, the author's thoughts and observations on life. Very inciteful, very inspiring and heartwarming to read before going off to snoozyland. Just the kind of book I'd hope to write some day. In one essay he wrote that books should not be kept, they should be shared and be made free to roam around and touch other people's lives. A nice idea indeed.

Well, there will be time. To read. If it's gotta be stolen moments for now, then let it be. So if you see me working as a driver or counter attendant someday, then you'll know my motives la kan...

PS..sorry for the probably misleading post title. If you were expecting a review on the movie The Reader... like Hugh Jackman sang, I haven't seen it yet...

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Tagged by Sharon

I'm supposed to post pictures of the following:

A picture of you at the most unique environment
Very unique, once in a lifetime opportunity for most people. My parents were generous enough to have me accompany them on their Haj pilgrimage to Mekah in Dec 2003. That's me near Jabal Rahmah in Arafah, the place where Prophet Adam and Eve met again. And that's probably the closest I will ever voluntarily get to a camel!

A picture that means a lot to you
So maybe you would think I'd post a picture of my family or Yasmin's birth. Yeah, it did cross my mind. But I couldn't find those pics, probably been copied to some cds somewhere. I came across this pic instead and I love it. And yeah, my friends mean a lot to me. Life would be so lonely and dull without them, eventhough they constantly talk about Korean or Taiwanese dramas all the time..oops! Hehehe.. I love you lot, you know it..

A picture of you with some toys or cute stuff
Haha...that's an itsy bitsy toilet! It's from my doll house that you can partially see in this pic. I had that doll house since I was around 6 or 7. Parents bought it at the States (I probably pestered them to..) Now Yasmin loves playing with the doll house too..even though bits and pieces of it are coming apart. Ooh, I wonder where's my Barbie doll collection??

A picture of you in white
Need to explain also ka this picture? That's after our nikah ceremony at my parent's home. My jubah was actually my mom's, bought at Mekah during Haj, I asked to have it altered slightly. I loved its simplicity and the silver embroidery.

I'd love to see pictures from Josie, Rin, Aza, Fran and Misako.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Crack Myself Up

Did you hear the one about the egg that tried to tell a joke??
It cracked up!

Hahaha...and that's totally me. I'm the egg. I attempted to tell hubby a joke I heard last night and wasn't even halfway through it when I myself cracked up! I failed miserably and ruined the punchline. I even stopped midway through my tears of laughter and told hubby I'd just sms him the ending. Kakaka.... I could never tell a joke. If someone asked me to tell a joke, I'd either go blank and not be able to recall any or else the above would happen. I can never be Humour Master in Toastmasters meeting but I have delivered humorous speeches and people have laughed!

***************************************************************************

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Good Morning, World!

What do you think of this new layout? Yasmin went to bed super early (before 9pm) because she didn't have her afternoon nap and we also brought her to the playground after work - so it was a double whammy. I also ran out of tv shows and movies to watch and so ended up tinkering with Blogger instead. I dunno if I'll keep this layout or try another or go back to the pink one.

I've watched Slumdog Millionaire during the weekend. The movie is simple but very likeable, no wonder it has won and is up for so many awards. The main character Jamal is very likeable, you can't help but to root for him to win the million(s) and get the girl too. They even did a Bollywood like dance at the end of the movie. Though I thought the final question was a tad easy..especially if you are a booklover or movie buff.

My Valentine's Day was spent with a bunch of guys in the morning. All whom I don't really know and none even wished or brought me gifts. Haha..I was teaching at the open u bah. Night time, we went to Tg Aru to satisfy our cravings of keropok lekor and jagung. Saw some people selling (must-be-overpriced) roses, saw a lady wearing a headband with the devil's horns and an absurdly short skirt. The place was packed, not just with couples but a lot of families. Guess V day doesn't hold that much meaning here..and not if you have a car load of kids tagging along. We did buy a bag full of pisang goreng which was sooo bad on account of its oily-ness but soooo good on account of it's taste and kerangupan! See..now I'm getting hungry.

Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice fans..have you seen the recent episodes with the cross-overs between these two shows? I reckon both these shows are going down in ratings and probably hoping to help each other out.

Oohh..The Amazing Race is back..and they've gone all techno this time round...with Google Earth like maps and 24 style split screens. And the opening and closing sequences are also new. See, I'm just slightly a little bit of a fan of the show so I notice these things. But Phil is still there with his 'the world is waiting for you' speech so I'm happy.. and OH! There's a new show (talk show??) called The Duke and it's hosted by Marc & Rovilson of TARA2??!! I have to catch the next one!

American Idol? Any faves yet? I love the serak-serak voice of Danny Gokey.. Tatiana is totally irritating and I hope she gets booted out soon!

Hmm..I'm rambling now... That's all la. Have a great day, y'all!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Letter Tag

Tagged by Rin-chan.

Rules:

It's harder than it looks! Copy to your own note, erase my answers, enter yours, and tag people. Use the first letter of your name to answer each of the following questions. They have to be real...nothing made up! If the person before you had the same first initial, you must use different answers. You cannot use any word twice and you can't use your name for the boy/girl name question.

1. What is your name? Linachu

2. A four letter word: Love

3. A boy's name: Luke (lead male character in Confessions of a Shopaholic.. hope the movie lives up to the book, though I wished it had been kept as British instead of being Americanized)

4. A girl's name: Lola (from the cartoon Charlie & Lola..sgt cute)

5. An occupation: Lecturer (past life)

6. A color: Lilac

7. Something you wear: Loafers

8. A food: Lamb Biryani (yummm!)

9. Something found in the bathroom: Loo

10. A place: London's Leceister Square

11. A reason for being late: Left handphone at home and just had to turn back to get it! Hehehe

12. Something you shout: Luck!!

13. A movie title: Love Actually

14. Something you drink: Lemon Tea

15. A musical group: Lifehouse

16. A street name: Lorong Biri-biri

17. A type of car: Land Cruiser

18. A song title: Lovefool

19. A verb: Listen

Passing tag to: Riz, Fran, Misako :)

Monday, February 16, 2009

Facebook Addict?

Found this article on Yahoo. Do you have any of those signs?

10 warning signs that you may be addicted to Facebook

1. Facebook is your home page.
2. You update your status more than twice a day.
3. You have over 500 "friends" half of whom you've never actually met.
4. As soon as you step away from your computer you're on FB on your phone.
5. You are a FB stalker. You qualify as a FB stalker if you
a) click on someone's profile more than once a day even if they haven't messaged or tagged you in a photo.
b) have dragged and dropped more than 3 FB photos (not from your own profile)
c) actually go to a place mentioned on someone's page in hopes of seeing them in real life...creepy!
6. You change your profile picture more than a 12-year old girl.
7. You have checked your FB page while reading this article.
8. You clean up your "wall" so it looks like you spend less time on FB.
9. You are a member of more than 10 groups and respond to every event invitation "attending" even if you have no intention of going.
10. You change your relationship status just to mess with people.

Hahaa..and guess what I did after reading the article?? You got it...log on to FB!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Clever Girl

I was showing Yasmin a picture of a well this morning and when she asked me what it was, I said "It's a perigi' " (pronounced the Sabahan way). I was thinking she didn't know what it was but guess what she asked me next.. She said, "Mommy, where's the bucket and the turning crank?' I'm like..wh-what?? You're three years old, you're not supposed to know words like turning crank!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Heroes

Watched the new episode of Heroes and I liked it! Seems the tables are turning for our heroes... I'm happy that Peter is back, floppy hair and all. He and his ideals always made him my favourite. Can't wait for the next episode.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Becoming Jane

Saw the trailer of this movie on Astro and asked hubby to acquire it for me. Finished watching it last night. It's not a terribly exciting movie (it's old era British and it's Jane Austen after all...), but if you're a fan of..... British movies and Jane Austen then you might enjoy this movie.

It's about the life of Jane Austen (played by Anne Hathaway) and her own experience in love that inspired her writings. Her love interest Tom Lefroy is played by James McAvoy, who falls madly for Jane but in true Austen style, the couple have to go through quite a few obstacles and sacrifices to decide whether they should be together or not.

I do not know how true the storyline in this movie is. According to wikipedia, the movie was derived from biographies and letters of Jane Austen. I do know that she died relatively young and that she never married. For avid fans of Jane Austen, you might notice that certain elements of the storyline are similar to those depicted in her books. For example, her first meeting with Tom Lefroy is just like the first meeting between Elizabeth Bennett and Mr Darcy in Pride & Prejudice.

I love Jane Austen's writing for her wit and style. I love that era of her life depicted in her books, when times were simple and women were just expected to find themselves a good husband yet most of her heroines still lived with passion whilst exuding independence and intelligence of their own. In those times, their idea of entertainment was a mere walk in the forest.

You might also like this movie if you like movies that depict writers. My other favourites include Little Women (Jo was the writer) and Anne of Green Gables. I was always amazed that in those times they only used quills and ink to write! They didn't even have kilometrico style pens, what more hard drives to store their work! Modern day writers in movies I like, the only one I can think of at the moment is Carrie Bradshaw. Probably have to give a mention to a certain character called Doogie Howser, MD as well... Remember how he used to write on his computer at the end of each episode? We should probably credit him for starting what we now know as blogging!

Roasted Chicken Day

Woke up my hubby this morning and told him, 'It's your favourite day... it's a rainy day!' Yep, it's Friday and it's been rainy and murky since early morning. Yasmin enjoyed the cool and had an extended sleeptime and only woke up around 9am. The usual spots have already started to puddle up as I drove to the office just now.

Friday afternoons hubby and his bros would all come home for lunch before heading off for Friday prayers at the nearby Sembulan mosque. The usual practise would be for me to buy some lauk for lunchtime, at any odd restaurant in my nearby vicinity, wherever I might be that day. I would usually buy 2 0r 3 dishes. Rice would be cooked at home. I started noticing though that the price of chicken dishes is quite expensive. One piece could cost 1.50-2 ringgit and most of the time they were absurdly small! With 6 of us at home, one ickle little piece for each person seemed not enough. So I'd buy maybe 8-10 pieces depending on the size, which brought the total close to or more than RM20 sometimes. I started buying fish and beef dishes but it seems they are more of chicken eaters at home.

So hubby suggested maybe we could try cooking chicken instead. And by we, he meant me :) I figured the easiest and less time consuming dish for me to prepare would be roasted chicken. Marinate the chicken overnight, plop it into the oven early in the morning, leave it to cook for 40 minutes or so and hey presto! By the time I'm prepared to leave, the chicken is done. Come lunchtime I only need to reheat it for a while. And so we've been doing this for the past few weeks, which is fine by me. Me loves roasted chicken!

This morning though, we thought of preparing honey chicken instead, which required me to shallow fry the chicken pieces first. It took me longer than I wanted. Hmm.. I guess it's back to roasted chicken next week!

Thursday, February 05, 2009

We Loves E-mail

Don't you just love e-mail? Despite the occasional phishing and the almost everyday spam attempts, it still remains a most useful and wonderous mode of communication. When I was overseas, it was the pengubat jiwa, keeping homesickness and friendsickness at bay. When I was at work, checking e-mail was the first order of the day (still is now!). This was in the times BFB - Before Facebook, and before the dawn of the phenomenon of blogging. I think it was those group e-mails back then that brought our close group of friends together. Nowadays, we still e-mail but not as often. FB and blogs are the now mode of updating each other.

E-mails are still oh so useful though, especially in my work now. Before the fuel price hike last year, I used to drive to my printers twice a week - once to send in the files to be printed and another time to collect the printing. Once the fuel price went up, I ingeniusly asked the printers if I could just e-mail them the files instead, they said yes and we've been doing that ever since. So I only need to make one trip there every week. Sometimes, the net connection does let me down or I have problems if the file is too large but overall, it's been ok.

E-mail keeps me easily in touch with my advertisers. If any of them need to make changes to their ad, they only need to e-mail it to me. And this morning, one of them asked me if I could pass her the invoice today so she can prepare the payment and I asked if a pdf copy sent via e-mail was OK and she said yes! I got it sent to her in less than 10 minutes. I e-mail invoices to my other advertisers too. Senang kerja, jimat kertas and tenaga.

Bless that person whoever it was that thought about e-mails!

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Push

Musical playlist tag, tagged by dear friend Misako. Yeah, yeah..I know.. I have quite a number of tags yang telah diabaikan or telah expire. So sorry dear friends... I meant to do that handbag tag, took out all my stuff, took the pictures and all..tapi ndak juga terbuat... The handwriting tag - errr...malas sikit sebab kena scan lagi tu tulisan kalau mau clear... what else, I think there were a few more... Anyway, for this one..

RULES:

1. Put your iTunes, Windows Media Player, etc. on shuffle.
2. For each question, press the next button to get your answer
3. You must write that song name down NO MATTER HOW silly it sounds.
4. Put any comments in brackets after the song name.
5. Put this on your journal/blog.

Got my iPod Shuffle ready. So here goes..

1. If someone says, “Is this okay?” … you say?
Januari
(by Glenn Fredly. Oopss..looks like it's too late, they will have to wait until next January to find out!)

2. How would you describe yourself?
Pure Shores
(by All Saints. This is an easy going and relaxed song. Makes me want to chill out at the beach and let my hair (or tudung) fly in the wind..I'm a pretty relaxed and calm person.. )

3. What do you like in a girl/guy?
You'll Think of Me
(by Keith Urban. I'd like them to think of me?)

4. How do you feel today?
Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now
(by Starship. Yeeehaaaa.... let the world around us just fall apart, baby we can make it if we're heart to heart! Great things are to come, I know it.... )

5.What is your life’s purpose?
I'll Be
(by Edwin McCain. My life's purpose is.. to be. To be lots of things. To be what some people want me to be. To be what or who I need to be. )

6. What is your motto?
Babylon
(by David Gray. Hmmm... I yahoo-ed this and found a comment regarding the song: Babylon (an ancient city that no longer exists) was compared to Utopia. It was wealthy, modern, and ahead of it's time in the ancient world. It was considered to be a powerful and perfect place. Ironically, it fell under it's own weight (greed and power). I believe David Gray uses babylon as a metaphor for a strong and seemingly perfect institution (his relationship) which eventually crumbles and falls apart. As for me, I'm not sure bout this one!! Requires some thought...)

7. What do your friends think of you?
The Pieces Don't Fit Anymore
(by James Morrison. Haha... I just had to laugh! I am going through some changes in my life. I am confused most of the time. I am in pieces, trying to sort out how I fit in this universe. My friends probably know or think so, but wouldn't say it. Sangat ngam!!)

8. What do you think of your parents?
Home
(by Daughtry. Oh my God! This is soooo fitting. Yes, my parents..they're my home. They're where I belong)

9. What do you think about very often?
Voices
(by Dario G Featuring Vanessa Quinones from the motion picture soundtrack of The Beach. Voices of people around me, what they are saying. Voices inside my own head. Yes, I think about this often)

10. What is 2 + 2?
Don't Look Back in Anger
(by Oasis. Haha..perhaps this is referring to bad memories in Math classes during school!)

11. What do you think of your best friend?
Wonderful World
(by James Morrison. It wouldn't be such a wonderful world without being able to share love, life, everyday experiences and whims with friends, right?)

12. What do you think of the person you like?
Drops of Jupiter
(by Train. Yes, I like people who are out of this world, different, dreamy..just like this song)

13. What is your life story?
Cobalah Untuk Setia
(by Kris Dayanti.. Oh me, oh my... my life story is to try to stay true? I guess so! First and foremost to stay true to myself!)

14. What do you want to be when you grow up?
Belaian Jiwa
(by Innuendo. Yes, I would want to be someone's Belaian Jiwa. Someone's love. And to be someone who touches other people's lives and souls too. I like this answer)

15. What do you think of when you see the person you like?
Without You
(by Same Same featuring Jaclyn Victor, from the soundtrack of Cinta. "The first time I saw you I knew, I knew I loved you cos my heart stopped..." )

16. What will you dance to at your wedding?
The Time of Your Life
(by Greenday. Hah! The title is fitting but I don't think you can even dance to this song.)

17. What will they play at your funeral?
Porcelain
(by Moby from the soundtrack of the movie The Beach. Guess what.. the opening lines of this song goes 'In my dreams I'm dying all the time, As I wake its kaleidoscopic mind, I never meant to hurt you, I never meant to lie, So this is goodbye,This is goodbye....' Oh MY!! )

18.What is your hobby/interest?
Wherever You Will Go
(by The Calling.. Hmm...no comment la this one.)

19. What is your biggest fear?
Ikhlas Tapi Jauh
(by VE, from the soundtrack of Cinta. Selagi bahuku memikul bebannya, selagi hayatku merasa seksa mu, selama senyuman menjadi senyum ku, ku bawa wajahmu walau diri ku jauh.... Listening to this song, I think it is about fulfilling expectations and responsibilities, living in this world today.. so I guess in a way, yeah...I believe whatever you do, it has to be with sincerity. Nevertheless, it is a fear, not being able to live up to those expectations and responsibilities)

20. What is your biggest secret?
Undiscovered
(by James Morrison. *Big smile here* My biggest secret is undiscovered. I myself, am not lost..just undiscovered.)

21. What do you think of your friends?
Stop and Stare
(by One Republic. I do have great and gorgeous friends, definitely worth the stop and stare!)

22. What will you post this as?
Push
(by Matchbox Twenty. Yes, to do this post, you need to Just. Push. Play. Isn't this an album title or a motto for something? This song is one of my favouritest, it got me in love with Rob Thomas)

There you go! Thanks Misako. I really enjoyed doing this! I got to listen to my favourite songs, in most instances I just listened to the entire song and waited for it to finish before getting the answer for the next question. And to some of the questions, I tried to really listen to the lyrics of the song to see if it did somehow match what the question was asking and yeah..a few did make sense! I actually wished there were more questions. The next song on my playlist would have been How To Save a Life by The Fray.

Who might enjoy doing this tag? I think...
- Rina (though most, no all of her songs will probably be in either Japanese or Korean...)
- Aza (already used up your iTunes voucher?)
- Fran (I know you love music, girl..)
- Paival (I know kau rajin blogging and buat tag :) )

Have fun!