Thursday, 14 January 2010

First impressions of Them Crooked Vultures.

They sound like they should! Grohl's heavy thumping of the bass pedal and its timing within Bandoliers sounds likes its a riff by itself. I'm already sold on New Fang. So I am more towards looking at whether the whole album has the same strength as the much played single. Lets see if this is a grower or a teaser.

Thursday, 29 October 2009

So you wanna buy a car in Bolehland?

What's in it for me, the man on the street (who doesn't own a chop shop, doesn't have open APs, and is not in the business of manufacturing car parts), based on the recently reviewed National Auto Policy (NAP)?

The bad news first..lots if you are a continental car lover like me.

Maintaining the import and sales tax, and excise duty. So Alfo Mito will still be RM150k++ and a Golf GTI will still be RM200k+ in the near future.

No more import of used car parts by 2011. The source of many continental car parts from Japan or Singapore. Mana nak cari parts untuk 145 boxer? Engine parts are still manageable as it shares with 146, but body parts? I probably gotta get a whole second car if I intend to keep it for long. Also parts price will skyrocket as it'll be scarce.

No more open AP after 2015. So better get the GT-R, STI, EVO, Silvia grey imports before then.

Any goodies?

As NAP allows assembling of autos >1.8L and costing >RM150,000, a VW GTI might cost cheaper due to the difference between CBU import duty and sales tax vs CKD import duty & sales tax by about 20%. For this to happen, either one of the assembly plants owned by DRB-Hicom (Pekan) or PROTON will have to tie up with major automakers. Malaysia being the biggest passenger car market in ASEAN is an attractive market, while the assembly plant owners would benefit by the higher utilisation of their plants, which some sources have quoted between 50-80% capacity utilisation.

A VW TDI will also be a possibility as the announced road map for petrol and diesel to comply with Euro 4M by 2011. The high sulphur content of current diesel Euro 2M has been a deterrent as most modern engines are designed to run on Euro 3. I once drove an Audi A4 Avant diesel with 1.9TDi. Love the pick up, 20-30% better consumption compared to a petrol, but looses breath early (5k rpm). But a killer in city traffic if you ask me.

Well both of these are big ifs, as it'll require a tie-up between automakers, which as of now, only VW seems interested, or to a certain extent, Renault.

This coupled with new fuel mechanism thats gonna track the oil price, things will not get any rosier for a continental car lover in the next few years.

Friday, 11 September 2009

Of health care reforms, election manifesto and Alfa MiTo.

Its been awhile since I blogged anything. As some of you may know, I'm kinda unemployed, but not short of things to do. Reverting to my past time of being a couch potato, I have been following the health care reform issues in the United States rather closely.

Rather than going into details of the reform, I have been more interested by the relentless pursuit of President Obama on getting a bill sorted out for the reform to work. Why has he been so relentless and determined? It was his election pledge. It has been around 9 months since his presidency, and with issues i.e Iraq, Afghan war, economic recession, piling like the office inbox I used to have, well not really, otherwise it would've been 'kacang' for him, he has been pursuing full throttle with NOS to boot. The past 2 months have been filled with public debate, wide media coverage, pros and cons of choices offered of the various issues related to health care reform.

Other than being a full time TVer, I log on to theStar every few hours or so. Lets just say I don't get a sense of urgency from either state or federal government and our lawmakers doing the same. I don't even remember what was the election manifesto of both PR and BN. Now why is that? Well one because I did not vote, since I did not manage to get on the electoral roll. Maybe the rakyat has not put a concerted effort to push for this. To let them know you guys suck. We should have a regular poll to tell these menteris, MPs, and ADUNs you guys better buck!

Maybe the silent majority has just been that, silent. But if we continue to be silent, come GE 13, who should I vote? Neither seem interested to work for a better Malaysia. Neither seem to be pushing for a better public transport. The cost of vehicle ownership is still expensive, that I cry everytime I look at car prices in the UK or US. Alfa MiTo cost RM150k in Malaysia while in the UK its £15k (convert should be ~RM90k). We still pay toll just to get stuck in jams.

Something for you and I to think about and hopefully act rather than just rant.

Sunday, 19 October 2008

Of bulan puasa and raya

I love Ramadhan and Syawal.

Well of course apart from being holy months of restraint, submission and forgiveness, I get to save alot of money.

Ramadhan..through less eating and free buka puasa. It helps that i've learnt to discipline my self this year to not over buy on foods at pasar Ramadhan.

Syawal..through open houses. I stuff myself silly in each of them, while hardly eating outside.
"Kurus pun boleh makan banyak ke", a friend remarked on my 4th trip of the roti jala servings.

You know where these savings will go to :)

Monday, 6 October 2008

Tepung Pelita Ramadhan


On my annual quest in finding the perfect tepung pelita, I asked myself, what makes a tepung pelita THE tepung pelita?

Its the gebuness of the texture. Not too soft..otherwise it'll spoil the first touch.
Its how it presents itself, not too watery. Thats just a turn off.
Its the sweetness, not bland, and not too much sugar that sometimes you can still taste and feel that it is not fully dissolved.
Its the perfect proportion of the whitish and the greenish parts, that makes it pleasing to the eye.
Its the how the daun pisang wraps around it, causing the sweet aroma emanating from it.

But, I take exception to the last criteria. As I have tasted the best tepung pelita this Ramadhan during the last days of puasa. It is a modernised version, macam Mk II ala VW Golf Mk II, V etc, wrap in plastic cup, but still taste fantastic. Yummm.

Wednesday, 24 September 2008

Bas Sekolah kaler Amber

Never mess with a Bas Sekolah

Aku gi sekolah dulu naik Bas Mini kaler kuning. Erm..bukan sekolah la..but pegi kolej. KDU. The whole lot of us..10-12 kot..were always amazed by the stunts pulled by the driver. Which happened to be a chinese aunty. Macho gila la. Kadang2 visit kitaorg kat umah naik motor Harley dia. Well..maybe not a Harley..something similar. If you have been around KDU, you will think it is next to impossible to maneuver a car without dislodging the parked cars side mirror. Its located in the middle of housing area, and cars parked by both side of the road. Well I tell you..this aunty drives the bus daily around that area...and hardly ever hit anything.

But there was this one day, finally, the aunty needed our help. This bugger parked his Wira by the side, blocking the road, making it impossible for the bus to pass. Aunty tu pun jerit, "Angkat itu kereta". So there were we, under the hot afternoon sun, after classes. 10 skinny college boys selalu tak cukup makan, angkat kereta Wira tu, tolak tepi sikit. Priceless.

I come most of the van sekolah and bas sekolah are driven by aunties or makcik2? Apa2 pun..R.E.S.P.E.C.T to these makciks and aunties. They are real mean lady drivers.

Saturday, 6 September 2008

UBAH GAYA HIDUP. Dump your Astro

Yep..I dumped my Astro. I was so blardy pissed off with them. See..I recently moved house, so had to remove the satellite dish, and later decided that I will not need the Astro anymore.
So I called to disconnect, and what did they told me?
They will need one month to DC. WTF?? Why one freakin month man? So with this one month, I will need to further pay for the coming months monthly subscription, which I am not goin to watch anyway, since the dish is down on my living room. Kalau nak connect and bayar, cepat je. Dah la charge RM10 for a single day of late payment. Rip offs. Pastu hujan takleh nak tgk. Stupid la.

So up yours Astro! Consumer power...I'm sticking to 6 free to air channels. Take you RM70 subscription fees and shove it up yours.

The upside to all this is I'm appreciating how hot Intan Ladyana is in Sutera Maya and how cute Liyana Jasmay is in Sari Maya :)