Friday, April 29, 2011

Got Money? Splash Your Cash on These!

i wonder who is selfish enough to buy these extravagant items! they do nothing more but boost the i’m-so-rich-i-can-buy-a-gold-toilet-bowl-if-i-want-to attitude. a mere display of wealthy arrogance. what i’m about to say (or rather, write) here is so cliche, but here goes – the money spent to buy these items can be put to better use…


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would you pay RM636,381 for this iPad?

this is the iPad supreme, a solid gold, diamond-encrusted iPad. only 10 are available around the world.

  • the apple logo is encrusted with 53 individual sparkling diamonds.
  • the rear and screen surround are made from a single piece of solid 22ct gold
  • it weighs 2,100 grams.

(source : here.)

i mean, owning an iPad alone is a status-symbol, and shows how ‘in’ you are in the tech-geek world. so i wonder what statement you want to emphasis when you decide to buy a GOLD one!

supposedly here in dubai, GOLD-plated iPads were on display at jumeirah, and six are already sold. ntah pak arab mane la yang beli tu. how much? a whopping 20,000 dirham each! (around RM16,000). wow. i wonder how many kampit beras you can buy with RM16,000…

sheesh. i can’t even afford the regular RM1,500 iPad…


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if you think that gold iPad thing is so extravagant, this next item is beyond extravagance. it’s an act of stupidity to go and buy one.

ruwa : a non-alcoholic drink sold in a diamond-studed bottle. on sale for 20 million dirham. about RM16 million. for a drink. right.



the bottle is enveloped with 8,000 diamonds, 200 rubies, and 2 bars of white gold, with a rose-flavored drink inside dubbed as ‘the first luxury halal drink in the market.’

brought to you by a ‘the beverage company’ of UK SPECIFICALLY targeting the filthy rich of the UAE. the reason? since liquor is banned in this islamic state, BUT people might still want to hooha hooha and drink, why not bring them this ultra-eye-poppingly expensive non-alcoholic booze?

some reports go so far as to say that, “..since drinking is a social experience, a company in UK formulated the ruwa as a non-alcoholic drink.” hello? so they’re saying that drinking beer, champagne or wine is the right way to socialize, tapi, sebab pak arab tak boleh minum arak semua tu, jadi kalo nak berlakon macam konon-konon minum brandy ke wine ke, boleh la guna botol ni.

eh, kat malaysia nak socialize bole minum teh tarik je ramai-ramai kat mamak! kalau dalam drama melayu lagi lah – minum fresh oren je.

and oh, my – that UK company is sooooo considerate to have a CHEAPER version of the drink and bottle for orang kebanyakan – on sale for ONLY 3 million dirham. wow, now everyone can afford this stupid drink!

and also, sooooo nice of them to provide FREE REFILS! awesome! that SURELY makes the 20 million worth spending, huh?


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Just Go With The Rite

movie reviews with syigim yet again. been long, huh.

this time it’s totally different movie genres : one is a romcom (romantic comedy) starring adam sandler and jennifer aniston about finally realizing that the one we really love had been standing in front of us the whole time. and another one is a horror flick ala ‘exorcist’; about a junior priest sceptic about the devil and exorcism, learning from a senior priest played by the magnificent anthony hopkins.


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boy lies to hot girl. boy ask plain girl to help lie to hot girl. plain girl has make-over. plain girl turned into hotter girl. all of them conveniently go on a holiday together. stuff happens. funny stuff. (which includes nicole kidman!) boy realizes his feelings for plain girl-turn-hotter girl.

jennifer aniston looked like age is fast catching up already (oops! which explains the bikini scene, my guess is to justify the hey-i-may-be-older-but-i-still-rock-it!) anyways i still love you, rachel karen green! as always, cute as a button, funny in her lovely charm. yes, i’m a fan!

i have only one bone to pick – i am absolute annoyed by the daughter character. she’s taking the cute factor way over the line  to the point that it becomes obnoxious. like adam sandler’s character said to her, “shut up already!!!”

…and i didn’t know that nicole kidman was in this! she’s so absolutely funny! i think her only comedic performance that i know was ‘moulin rouge’, and even that was just quirky comedy-turned-tragedy kinda movie.

‘just go with it’ is a simple comedy, lovely to be enjoyed while cozying up with your other half. the storyline is non-complicated, the jokes are funny and the predictable end is fine because that’s what viewers want!


* * *



‘the rite’ is fantastically scary, thanks to the incredible presence of anthony hopkins. he steals every scene he’s in. well, sometimes you almost expect him to say, “hellllllo clarice,” when he does the suspiciously familiar ‘maniacal-smile-and-stare look’ – but, he’s still wonderfully creepy.

a young priest, sent to learn from an otai priest. senior priest is so cool in chasing out the devil that after a good ‘fight’ to exorcised the evil spirit, he simply said, “okay. that’s it.” meanwhile, young, hot priest is sceptical about exorcism, saying it’s all psychological. cue the eerie soundtrack.

sure kena punya lah priest muda tu! was what i said. but – the twist sets you to a pretty scary ride. a good watch, right after the classic ‘exorcist’, and ‘emily rose’. definitely another movie to watch even if it’s just to hug your other half under a tiny blanket while half-hiding behind his muscular arms. haha.


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Saturday, April 23, 2011

Dubai Ambulance is Harley Davidson

this is the first time that i saw ‘ambulance’ in a form of a motorcycle – and not just any motorcycle, but a huge superbike. which brand? only the best for these life-savers in dubai – they roll around in harley davidsons!




i’m guessing these bikes are used instead of the van-like ambulance, for minor injuries, or for accidents that doesn’t involved taking any persons to a hospital. tak boleh imagine la pulak tengah cedera tu, mangsa kemalangan tu boleh pulak larat bonceng belakang motor tu!

there are a couple of compartments attached on each side of the bike, as well as at the back, for storing medical supplies.

the emergency number 999 is clearly seen on every side of the bike. NINE NINE NINE, folks. keep that in mind. you never know when danger strikes. malang tak berbau.




working with the ambulans team has never been this cool! imagine riding around town in these awesome shining harleys, and getting paid for it? not only that, you get to save lives, and help people. that’s double bonus if you ask me.

the ambulans crew in dubai sure ride in style!

*credit picture : mr rizal harley. thanks bro.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

What Kids Learn From Storybooks

there’s a facebook status that has been going around these days.




the status went like this :

How do you expect kids to listen to their parents as, Tarzan lives half naked, Cinderella comes back home at midnight, Pinocchio lies all the time, Aladdin is the king of thieves, Batman drives at 320KM/h, Sleeping beauty is lazy and Snow white lives with 7 guys. We shouldn’t be surprised if kids misbehave at times! They get this from their own storybooks :P


as a HUGE fan of fairytales, and imagination world built by the brothers grimm, enid blyton, walt disney and roald dahl, i was very offended! hahahaha. offended, but very amused. it’s true that the storylines did have these unsightly traits in them! so i really wanted to reply in a way that shows the positive side of storybooks!

this was my reply :

hmm. interesting. but tarzan learns quick from an entirely different species, cinderella does housechores, pinocchio beats a whale to save his father, aladdin selflessly wishes the genie free, batman fights for justice, sleeping beauty is simply a victim of a curse and snow white is compassionate towards animals. we still have hope from kids' storybooks. ;)


and throughout the day, i saw few more of my friends who put up this facebook status. and to each one i replied the same!




what do i really think? what kids LEARN from PARENTS, and their UPBRINGING, they will apply when they read storybooks.

you see, if for example, a child grows up with a maid waiting on him, on her toes upon his every command, wants and needs – (of course not all kids take advantage of having maids, but i personally know that there are kids who yell at their maids, and even tell their teachers how ‘slow and stupid' their maid is!) they won’t see anything wrong with piling works on cinderella.

when their own father ignores the speed limit and drives like they’re racing for F1, then they would idolize batman’s driving skills, “because that’s how my daddy drives!”.

my point is, when your child already has a strong base on morals and manners, and a decent knowledge of the world, storybooks are nothing but fun-filled imagination fantasy-land where they go and meet made-up characters and learn a few lessons on the way.

pick up a book today, read with your kid, and explore the world together. khaleef and i – our pick would be dr. seuss. currently we’re reading ‘horton hears a who’.

lessons learned : ‘a person’s a person, no matter how small!’


* * *


on the other hand, i read one of the comments suggesting that we expose our kids to kisah-kisah nabi tales of the prophets of islam). oh, how we’re so indulgent in western tales of fairies and magic, that we forget the incredible tales of miracles and mukjizat of our prophets.

i admit my oversight!

i hope to get a whole bunch when we get back to malaysia. any suggestions of any particular books specially for kids? khaleef can read about the prophet who can speak when he was a baby, the prophet whose mother stomped on a spot and there sprinkled the zamzam water, the prophet who can understand animal language, and of the prophet who once had a cloud that follows him, sheltering him from the sun…

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Do You Tumblr?

its tagline is, “the easiest way to blog”.

like i told my husband (who is too lazy to write long-winded sentences like i do!), tumblr is perfect for him :

  • he has tons of travel pictures.
  • he wants to write only a few sentences to describe a picture.
  • sometimes, all he has are just thoughts inspired by that picture, or what it reminds him of.
  • he definitely prefers microblogging!

i have a tumblr account, and soon i’ll create one for him, just about what he sees on his travels. i’ve had this account since 2-3 years ago but recently i decided to tumblr actively after seeing the gorgeous pictures on my sister’s tumblr, favoritewaffle. they’re really good!

my tumblr is titled, “For My Sons”, created just for my 3 boys; khaleef, kahfi and kazim. it has my kata-kata hikmah for them, it has little stories of me, mr. khairul and the boys; and it has food pictures – with more coming up!


my tumblr

essentially tumblr IS the same as blogging, but it’s condensed. you can follow each others’ tumblr (just like in blogs) and you can share ANYTHING (just like in blog) from quotes, to pictures and videos.

however, the one unique thing about tumblr is the ‘reblog’ button.

when you visit an interesting tumblr, and you see a picture you like, or some tips or short story – you can immediately press ‘reblog’, and that picture will automatically appear in YOUR OWN tumblr, with full credit and back link to the original owner.

and of course it works both ways. some random stranger visits YOUR tumblr. if they like your picture, they can freely press ‘reblog’ and you can proudly see YOUR picture on someone else’s tumblr, with full credit to you. and you will be notified in your dashboard.

best kan! it’s a nice feeling when you know that someone out there like what you put up, and sudi nak letakkan kat tumblr dia. hihi.

click here to visit my tumblr!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Khaleef Found Dinosaur Fossils!

boys and dinos are inseparable.

it’s a complex relationship that we would never understand. how could these massive reptiles that roamed the earth hundreds of million years ago possibly be COOL? i mean, they see a cicak pass by and they don’t go – awww awesome! it must be the size, or those ‘extra-parts’; protruding backbones, or having three horns, or a metal-like ball at the end of the tail – and the claws, razor sharp teeth and the roar!

if they were to exist together, sure they could hang out with the herbivorous triceratops, or hitch a ride on the towering brontosaurus – but they would definitely be yummy appetizers for the mighty t-rex!


khaleef & his new friend the stegosaurus


since khaleef LOVE dinosaurs so much, i bought him a dino excavation kit – and he could pretend to be a paleontologist – complete with a block of dirt where the dino bones are, brush and chisel!



he was supposed to work through chiseling the block of hard dirt and gently brushing away the excess in order to get to the fossils. the process is supposed to be painstakingly LONG, but worth it.

yeah, right. khaleef wanna wait THAT long? i don’t think so.

there is a ‘cheaters’ manual inside the box (haha). so i submerged the whole block of dirt into a bucket of water, let it set for a few minutes and it will just crumble to reveal the dinosaur bones!



it was pretty exciting seeing bits of the dino ‘fossils’ emerging from the dirt! main tipu pun main tipu lah! haha. since the dirt is already soft and crumbly, it’s easier for my junior paleontologist to dig through and get all the dino parts.



halfway through, khaleef decided to put on a creative cap and takes his green soldiers to ‘guard’ the dino bones while he takes a rest.

the green beret looks so cute standing on the block of dirt, against the bones. he role-played for awhile before continuing his ‘excavation’.



when all the bones had been ‘recovered’, i washed them off the dirt, and khaleef began to put the pieces together like a puzzle.



the end result was pretty cool. the parts didn’t connect so securely though, so i think we need to use UHU glue or something to keep them together.

siap kasi backdrop lagi!



this is NOT a paid advertorial guys, haha but if you’re looking for some fun for your science-geek kiddos, i got this at geant ibn battuta mall for a surprisingly cheap price! there are other science kit, like building your model of the solar system and stuff like that.

i’m probably getting another dinosaur!



what khaleef learned from this activity :

patience : he was very, very patient. not only did it take so long for him to chisel his way in, he was also asked to take this out ONLY when both his brothers are asleep, or else they might step on the dirt and habuk or he might lose some dino parts!

what a paleontologist does : he might not be able to pronounce the word yet, but he has a rough idea that there are people out there whose job is to find, and dig up dino bones so he could learn about them in school!

stegosaurus : a herbivore dinosaur with the very recognizable tail spikes and plates. its name means ‘roof lizard’, and it exists about 150 million years ago. how big is it? it’s 9 meters long, and 4 meters tall!


* * *


i feel like watching ‘jurassic park’…

Monday, April 11, 2011

KL Bird Park & Dandenong Birds, Australia

did you know that our own kuala lumpur bird park is the world’s LARGEST free-flight walk-in *aviary? i didn’t, and i am very impressed! especially after looking at the wonderfully colorful pictures of my youngest sister azot during her recent visit to kl bird park. she went with her other half faiz, and brought along my niece cuya.

here i am, at the land of the world’s tallest building, and the world’s biggest mall, and the world’s highest fountain – when back home, we have the world’s largest bird park!

*an aviary is a large enclosure for confining birds. unlike cages, aviaries allow birds a larger living space where they can fly; hence, aviaries are also sometimes known as flight cages. aviaries often contain plants and shrubbery to simulate a natural environment. ~wikipedia


that means, when you walk into the kl bird park, you’re walking into the largest cage in the world! the birds live, fly, and play in their natural habitat, simulated in this large aviary.

it’s somewhat a ‘cage’ per-se, but the natural habitat that they ‘built’ for these birds are so good and real, that researchers often choose this bird park to study behavioral pattern of birds!


this is my favorite picture. azot surrounded by brightly colored birds! even on her head! super cute!


fun facts on kl bird park :

  • open in 1991
  • it’s adjacent to lake gardens
  • there are over 3000 birds from 200 species!
  • 90% local birds, and the rest imported


cuya with uncle faiz feeding the ‘red lory’ an indonesian bird


i was so happy seeing cuya in all those picture with her maksu and err, (bakal paksu ke?), but a bit sad that she didn’t wait for her dubai cousins! khaleef would absolutely LOVE the freely flying birds, kahfi would sure go bonkers speeding around chasing unsuspecting birds, while kazim would definitely be speechless, in awe of the natural wonders around him.

when we come back to malaysia, we’re taking a trip here! proud to be malaysians!!! visit kl bird park official site for more information.


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my fellow malaysian melbournians are surely familiar with this nature spot in victoria! dandenong ranges national park!

the picture below is me hand-feeding one of the wild birds at the dandenong ranges. this bird is called ‘the great aussie galah’ or ‘rose-breasted cockatoo’, memang merata kat australia. this is a trip with abah and my youngest sister azi when i was in melbourne for my masters.

these are birds IN THE WILD, but they are really unusually tame!



me @ dandenong, feb 2004


things to do in dandenong :

  • here you could hand-feed native birds surrounded by a canopy of tall eucalyptus trees
  • there are tables nearby where you can enjoy a picnic amidst cooing of parrots and the smell of fresh greeneries
  • a lot of walking tracks to enjoy the cool, fresh nature and out in the wild
  • take a ride of the famous historical ‘puffing billy’ train!



me & the msia hall melbourne girls having a picnic @ dandenong after a trip to tulip farm


this picture above was taken during my 2nd trip to the dandenong ranges with gal pals from malaysia hall melbourne; that’s me in pink, nurin, titi (black tudung), behind her is kak dayang, liyana (pink tudung) and kak laily (black jacket).

if i’m not mistaken it was my turn to cook for the team that day with my cooking partner, right dolah? *wink* i remember because our cooking day is always on weekends! i think we made fried rice with fried chicken. nyum.


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aussie parrots and cockatoos are so beautiful, but you can see that our kuala lumpur bird park has fantastic-looking parrots as well kan?

here in dubai, you can enjoy a different kind of bird – birds of prey, most famous is of course, the iconic falcon. falconry (the sport of training falcons) is big here in the UAE, and there are birds-of-prey shows available. try checking out here. haha. and if you’re lucky, you get to have a falcon perching on your arm when you visit the historical bastakiya.


* * *


speaking of birds, there’s one perching on my balcony now. time to throw some old bread crumbs so that they keep coming…

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Cucu Haji Podin

my nephews and nieces. members of cucu podin’s club. refer here.


cucu sulung haiqal syahid (red t), adam haris (same age as kazim), aisyah husna (same age as kahfi), haqeem syukran, sufiyyah syafiqah, & marissa marha


tunggu khaleef, kahfi and kazim balik ye. kita pegi zoo, and makan pizza kat rumah atuk. miss all of you very, very much!!!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Picnic Party @ Dubai Creek Park

sunny. breezy. party. 3 reasons for us to be out at a park.

we were out to celebrate little izani and khalid’s 5th birthday at dubai creek park yesterday morning. birthday boys’ parents – elisa and taufik, along with ruby and walid joined forces to organize the fun outing; complete with bbq yummies, fun water-based games and lots of laugh.

it looks like summer is peeking out and we already starting to feel the heat. yes, it was a hot day – but windy. rasa macam kat malaysia je.


when we arrived, soft mats were already sprawling on the grass surrounding a shady tree. thanks so much for making the picnic party so cozy and comfy!

(photo credit : affandy m shaari)

dads gossip too you know!


love this shot! (photo credit : affandy m shaari)

food station

was handling cranky kazim while scooping food that i miss taking shots of the yummies. there were bbq-ed turkish hotdog that came all the way from german, potato salad and coleslaw. malay food bihun goreng ngan karipap tak dilupakan. and since one of the birthday boys’ mom is married to an egyptian, she made egyptian-style baked pasta called ‘macarona bil bechamel’.

my boys LOVE anything that’s remotely pasta-y so naturally they were ravishing this egyptian macarona dish. i want the recipe, ruby!

“no pork please”

* * *

my boys? roaming freely? out in the open? without boundaries? this is their utopia!

nuff said.

* * *

organizer-moms elisa and ruby should be commended for their ambitious plan of having water-based games which would include moms and dads as well! in the end, they managed to run 3 games – all for kids – just as it should be! haha.

first they had the balloon-stampede game. tie a balloon around your feet – and step on your opponents’ balloons while protecting yours! then they played passing-the-water-balloon game, where khaleef kept dropping his! dah 3rd time, he was bumped down to holding the bowl at the end of the line! hihi.

next, the game involved water pistol. the kids went nuts!


* * *

they’ve got this yummy moist choc cake for the kiddos, and a lemon cake for the moms and dads. hmm, i’m not much a lemon cake-fan, so i helped myself to slices of choc cake!

birthday boy izani (in blue t) with mom elisa at the back. birthday boy khalid (in white t) with mom ruby cutting the cake.

* * *

then came the most awaited moment –

again, i applaud elisa and ruby’s effort of having an extra fun thing for the kiddos to do – swinging pinata!

a piñata (a spanish word pronounced as ‘pinyada’) is a brightly-colored decoration made from either a clay container or cardboard shape covered with papier-mâché…a common tradition is to spin the batter before he or she tries to hit the piñata, making the person dizzy. piñatas are commonly full of candy and other treats. ~wikipedia

it was fun watching the kids ravaging the sweets, chocs and candies that popped out from the pinata!

* * *

with organizers aka birthday boys moms ruby (in black) and elisa (in white)

i’ve known elisa since the first time we met at indo restaurant sari nusa, but this was the first time i met ruby. funny and friendly, truly the life of a party, she makes everyone feel at ease with her warmth and easy-going ways. thanks for having us, elisa and ruby!

i love how family events like this pull people together. like i always said (or write) – strengthen existing bonds, and build new ones.

err, any other makan-makan that we should know about? *wink*

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

A Brother From Jordan

whenever mr. khairul is over there in amman jordan, a brother is waiting to extend his warm hospitality and friendship. from business meetings to casual outings, mr. khairul and this brother had formed a strong bond.

he’s not new to dubai, but nevertheless – welcome, brother! marhaba!



mr. khairul, khaleef & bro yahya


yahya was here spending time in dubai with his lovely wife diana and 6-month old baby maya. yahya is a jordanian, diana is american – so i guess that makes their daughter maya a jor-merican? *gelak lawak sendiri*

when i first found out about yahya from mr. khairul, he was still single. when i was told he just got married, i was - ‘what!’ haha. tall, dark and handsome tu! and his other half is just the perfect match. beautiful family.



with diana & daughter maya


from my korek-korek prowess, i found out that they met in university. aww, sweet! now don’t you think his wife diana looks like our theater star joanna bassey? kan? kan?



they just had dinner right before meeting us, so we just hang out over coffee and snacks at one of the always-full-house cafe ‘paul’ at the walk, jbr (jumeirah beach residence). the weather was generally getting warmer, but the occasional breeze was nice and lovely.

we were exchanging views on jordan, and malaysia and dubai, and the states. sharing stories. talks on kids and their idiosyncracies.

khaleef was busy singing to the crying maya, while mr. khairul spent half the time chasing kahfi the speeding cockroach! at one point even yahya had to run up to help catch him!


the wriggly kazim just can’t stay put with aunty diana, while little maya was in awe listening to khaleef’s singing! haha


a simple outing, a simple setting. but it was nice and warm to just hang out with yahya and family. come again, stay longer! oh, and wait for me and the kids to come over to amman jordan one day, insyaAllah!

Monday, April 4, 2011

5 Reasons I Cry Watching Junior Masterchef

if you’ve been taking a walk on the moon or hybernating for the past months, you’d probably didn’t know that ‘junior masterchef’ is a cooking game show involving kids aged between 8 – 13. looking at their age, you’d think they make cute cupcakes, plain porridge or just simple caesar salad. nope.

yeap. my jaw dropped, looking at the level of sophistication they brought to their cookings. not just that, i was close to tears watching these mini masterchef at work. ok lah, not close to tears – i was actually in tears already!



beating 5,000 hopefuls, these are the top 12 finalists for this first season. among the top 12 are twin sisters isabella and sofia from queensland. though i already know who will end up winning in the end, it’s never a bore watching these little kitchen geniuses at work.

they’re SO talented, and they’re SO adorable!


picture credit : here. my favorite would be pierre, cassidy, jack, isabella & twin sis sofia & alex :-)


1) age does not matter to achieve greatness

their culinary competence is beyond anything i’ve seen a kid can do. i mean, yah sure you’d be impressed when a kid can do algebra at the age of 7 – but this is more fun! age jokes kept popping up - “what are you? 27? 30?”, and “how old are you? 8?! you’re joking!” and “if this is how your chocolate mousse taste like when you’re 9, imagine how it will be when you’re 20!”

the presentation of their food is also remarkable. it looks like it came straight from a fancy restaurant fit for fine dining. you know – the kind where they make all the prawns stand up and sauce is poured on top, or a teeny weeny dessert with chocolate spiral around it and fresh raspberry on the side – unbelievable.

i mean, kids are generally creative – but this is something really classy altogether!

2) they display outstanding support for each other

they hugged each other after a challenge, they give high-5s, they pat each other on the back when someone made it to the next round – the supportive atmosphere was just astounding. you’d be ashamed at how much adult contestants bicker, complain and back-stab each other in other reality shows.

in junior masterchef, there are no put-down comments on other contestants like, “i know she’s good so if i can beat her it would be great,” or “he doesn’t deserve to be here, he’s got no talent,” – they’re just a bunch of kids having a time of their lives.


3) incredible parents’ support

i feel so overwhelmed with their cooking talent, that i cried. imagine their parents! there was one contestant, whose father looked like an aging biker – but always seemed on the verge of tears everytime the camera points at him. so very sweet!

the moms are always, “i’m panicking but he seemed so relax, and has everything under control. i’m so proud of him,” there was one mom who screamed so loud and jumping up and down at her seat that her kid was like, “aw mom! not on national TV!” and the one of the judges commented in jest, “your mom is embarassing, huh? haha. no matter how old you are, your mom is going to be proud like that!”

cammon, you’re a mom (or dad) – your kid is able to put his shoes in the shoe rack all by himself, and you’d be throwing pompoms up in the air, right? just the other day my eldest son khaleef kemas the entire living room, and WASHED HIS OWN PLATE. *hati berbunga-bunga*!

that’s definitely a proud moment for me!

4) they’re cooking stuff i can’t even pronounce, using cutleries i don’t even recognize!

croquembouche, boudin blanc sausage, la gout de la mer, cotolette, classic vietnamese dishes, french cuisine, mediterranean meals – these are only some of the dishes that the junior master chefs were able to produce from their little kitchen.

say what?

these are dishes that i can’t even afford to order from high-end restaurants and cafes, let alone try to make one! these kids are incredible!

they make their own capsicum sauce and lemon dip, they mould their own pastry dough and rolled out their own pasta from scratch. they look like they’ve got years of training before-hand to get to the point where they can make all these on their own – within very limited time!

i wonder if the kids could spell what they’re cooking...


5) the cool judges

the judges make it fun for them. their comments are a pleasure to hear, their expressions are exaggerated and they even help out at the kids’ station.

sure, they MOSTLY gave out positive comments – because hey, lighten up – they’re just kids! if you pull a gordon-ramsay, that kid won’t ever touch another pot! during judging, they make funny faces when they taste, widened their eyes in disbelief of how good the dish tasted, they even once walked away from the judging table and pretend it didn’t taste that good.

all in good natured fun and just a lot of encouragement for the young chefs.


* * *


enjoy one of the many, many clips of the awesome cheflings. this one is a group of the youngest groups of contestants – 8 to 10-year olds. amazing.



zoey is so adorable! i love her quippy little accent especially the way she pronounce ‘sauce’. hihi *pinch pinch*

okay, i’m already ecstatic that akademi fantasia is finally coming to its final season. enough already! and like mr. khairul mentioned, we should be proud that ‘imam muda’ was our own unique reality-show, and was even mentioned in the UAE newspaper. also, masterchef malaysia is coming soon.

now the question is – when can we have junior masterchef : malaysia?

Saturday, April 2, 2011

The Experiment, The Town & The Social Network

all based on true stories. all well-made movies. one stars an academy award winner, another one directed, starred and written by an academy award director-writer, and another one stars a recent young academy award nominee.

the seemingly harmless experiment that turned ugly; the town with the highest number of bank robberies in america, and the tale of the youngest billionaire in the world.


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this disturbing movie is based on an actual experiment run by a professor to determine how normal people react to specific roles given to them based on the circumstances that they’re in.

so this group of people were told that they will be paid big bucks for participating. the catch? it must be for 2 straight weeks, they will be held in a remote location for that period, their rights may be violated at some point, and if they back-off before the experiment is completed – they won’t get paid.

agreeing to all terms, the men were taken to this warehouse which turned out to be a mock prison. they’re then separated into 2 groups – the prison guards; and the prisoners. it was all made to be real – the ‘guards’ were given uniform, set of rules that they MUST follow or else no payment, and armed with baton; while the ‘prisoners’ are given worn-out prison-clothes and locked in tiny cells.

at first they all laugh at this ‘acting’ that they have to do. but when one of the ‘prison guards’ got gila kuasa, things started to get really ugly. the ‘camera’ that is said to monitor their ‘performance’ to confirm payment didn’t help.

that’s when you see various human behaviours – different people reacts differently to this stressful situation they’re in. like in a real prison; there would be one guard who is not ruthless, and there would be one prisoner who stood up and retaliate to protect other prisoners. these normal men became so obsessed with their ‘role’ that they would do anything to ‘survive’ – beating up the man they befriended before the start of the experiment – just for this experiment that violates their rights as human.

it addresses the question : what would YOU do, given the same circumstances; be it as the ‘prison guard’, or the ‘prisoner’? who’s to say that you won’t succumb to the cliche of the roles given to you? if you’re told that you’re the ‘guard’, would you naturally be a disciplinarian? if ‘prisoner’, would you then naturally flow into being a trouble-maker?

very strong, intense performance by the leads – both academy award winners for best actors – adrien brody, and forest whitaker. a great watch, but for me, once is enough. the outcome of the experiment was very interesting; but much too disturbing for me to see it again.


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ok, my bad. this movie is NOT based on a true story, but based on the fact that the ‘town’ which is ‘charlestown’ – really IS where bank robbers mostly are. during the premier of the movie, director and lead ben affleck did say; not everyone in charlestown is bad, and not all are bank robbers!

the plot? group of locals rob a bank with masks. but the pretty bank manager might know something, so ben affleck character must befriend her to find out more. ruggedly handsome recovering-bank robber falls for helpless damsel-bank manager. duuh. now he juggles conflict between pleasing his bank-robber-buddies by robbing another bank, his love for the pretty bank-manager who makes him want to reform, and in between, running away from the fbi agent out to get him and the gang.

the story itself is actually a bit hindustan – haha, meaning it’s a bit dramatized in terms of

  • how easily she falls for him
  • there’s always the ‘more aggressive, gangsta ‘brother’ who takes care and always wants to protect’
  • the hero must have a sad past to make heroin feels sorry (and want to hug him haha); his mom leaving his dad with him when he’s little
  • there’s always the determine-to-catch fbi agent who keeps the action going ala tommy lee jones’ character going after harrison ford in ‘the fugitive’


though some plots are predictable, it’s a nice watch, and a nice heist movie. if you like a good heist movie with some sappy romance – this is for you. if not, baik tengok ‘the bank job’ lagi cool. sigh. it’s just that i forgot how oh-so-fine ben affleck’s abs are. grrr.


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ok, i know lah basi already, and the billion people who has a facebook account have already seen this masterful tale of the youngest billionaire in the world. but here’s my review.

when i watched the movie :

  1. i didn’t know mark zuckerberg was THAT sarcastic. to the point of being a total jerk.
  2. i was surprised that mark zuckerberg let himself be potrayed in such a negative light.
  3. i didn’t know that the wardo character is such a sweetheart. sigh.
  4. i didn’t know that i would totally HATE justin timberlake in this.


after watching, i googled, and :

  1. it seemed that mark zuckerberg IS sarcastic, but he’s never THAT mean, and never would intentionally betray a good friend.
  2. mark zuckerberg was actually being a good sport and just laugh off how he was potrayed in the movie. duuh. if you have a billion dollars, what do you care what some movie talks about you!
  3. wardo IS a sweetheart isn’t he? sigh.
  4. the real sean parker said, his character in the movie potrayed by justin timberlake is PURE FICTION, and he said, “he wished his life was THAT cool.”


what i like about the movie :

  • i like movies with narration. it makes it more personal. like story-telling.
  • no wonder jesse eisenberg earned an oscar nomination for his role as the billionaire – his fast-talking, wise-cracking character is fun to watch!
  • my youngest sister is an IT programmer, network-er or whatever you call these computer geeks – so i was really thinking of her every time ‘mark zuckerberg’ rushes on his laptop and started pounding the keys to type in the codes or whatever. kinda cool.
  • the scenes moving from past to present is good, and keeps us grounded to the fact that there were lawsuits going on – as we watched the great invention of facebook unfolds.

i like ‘the social network’. i’d watch it again. if you’re one of those rare people who hasn’t seen it AND you have a facebook account, shame on you. haha. go watch history in making!


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man, lamanya tak review movie!

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