Illustration Friday: Baby

31 May 2008 | Hisham | | Artwork
Umbilicals still attached

An Illustration Friday entry, done before the weekend is over. The topic is merely "Baby". The other parts where it has cables connected to its cranium and spine are mostly me.


Zarin and Lily

31 May 2008 | sila | | Family Pics, Friends

In case anyone was wondering how Lily took to having Zarin around for a few days, she was totally comfortable with him. (These are pictures that Zarin took - guna sikit ya, Zarin?).

First night, already that kitkat made herself comfortable right in the middle of Zarin's bed:

Right in the center of the guest bed


31 May 2008 | sila | | Food, Humour, Recent News

And I say it again...WTF?? This creature has been wandering the backyards of our neighborhood in the last few weeks. Where did it come from? Why is it here? Why hasn't it been caught and made into dinner????? It's pooping on our driveway, big old tahi ayam crap! Whose up for a good chase? Grrrrrr...

Chicken in the backyard
Close Up of said chicken

As a consequence, we had to stop putting out birdseed for the birds and squirrels since this chicken was taking advantage of it. Grrrrrr


Zarin's Visit

31 May 2008 | sila | | Family Pics, Friends

So Zarin (atukku!) spent a few days with us (May 16-22) during which time, I regret to say that even though I brought my camera everywhere, I didn't take as many pictures as I should have. Too busy chatting and hanging out and eating. What to do? I haven't had this kind of time to hang out with Zarin since our college days (and since Zarin came for the 10th Year reunion, that's as many years since we've had the luxury of hanging out like this).

We did plan some activities to do (other than hanging out!). On Saturday, we went to watch the Cincinnati Reds play against the Cleveland Indians (Interleague Play).

Sorry Zarin, I borrowed a few of your pictures for this entry...

Zarin and Vin

Lance Is Virtually A Cat

29 May 2008 | Hisham | | Misc Sci-Fi, TV
Lance Lampkin

Warning: Spoilers for Battlestar Galactica episode "Sine Qua Non". Click on the thumbnail at your own risk.


Thirty Two Weeks

23 May 2008 | sila | | Family Pics, Friends

Time seems to be flying on by! We are now at 32 weeks, as of this past Monday. 80% of the way there now! Feeling big and getting bigger...

The traditional shot

Some Good Saucer Men News

20 May 2008 | Hisham | | Movie Review, Trawling The Net

Take that, commie reviewer bastards!This summer will see a whole lot of nerd rage with wave after wave of nerds complaining to the tune of George Lucas screwed the pooch with the Star Wars prequel trilogy. Why?

Because, yet to be released are The Incredible Hulk, Hellboy II: The Golden Army, X-Files: I Want To Believe, Punisher War Zone, The Dark Knight, Star Wars Clone Wars (Yes! There's a Star Wars movie coming out in theatres this summer and it's not being overly marketed by a juggernaut on steroid, thank you very much! A heartfelt hurrah!) and of course next week's Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

Yes, a lot of nerd rage has been directed towards Kingdom of the Crystal Skull because of... well, nerd reasons. (And Speed Racer will probably tank badly because of horrible marketing strategy and bad word of mouth from people who haven't seen it.) However, there's been somewhat of a good news from Cannes, of all places, for Professor Henry Jones, Junior.

According to Yahoo News:

Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull has proved a huge hit at the Cannes International Film Festival on Sunday - receiving a standing ovation from critics at its world premiere.

The fourth installment of Steven Spielberg and George Lucas' famous adventure franchise was one of the most eagerly awaited screenings at the French event, attracting a huge amount of hype and publicity.

But weeks of speculation threatened to tarnish the premiere after rumours suggested the film had been panned by movie bosses at an exclusive initial screening in Los Angeles last month.

However, the film - which sees 65-year-old Harrison Ford return to the role of Indiana Jones after a 19 year gap - was praised by the world's media, reportedly garnering a three and a half minute standing ovation by the select few who were invited to watch it, according to American industry publication Variety.

Before the screening, manic crowds gathered to catch a glimpse of the movie's returning star Ford, who told awaiting reporters he didn't care if the movie received bad reviews, as long as moviegoers enjoyed the action.

He said, "I expect to have the whip turned on me. I'm not really worried about it. I work for the people who pay to get in. They are my customers and my focus is on providing the best experience I can for those people."

And although legendary moviemaker Lucas admitted last month he had hatched plans to revive the action hero for a fifth film, he kept tight-lipped about the plans at the Cannes premiere. He told reporters, "Harrison, Steven and I haven't talked about it. We can't do it unless I can come up with a good idea, which I haven't."

The original trilogy - the last being 1989's Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade - was one of the highest-earning franchises in film history, grossing over GBP500 million at the global box office.

I'm just going to go watch it and enjoy it for what it is: an action pulp serial made into a big budget movie of the 21st century.


Irfan's Second Sports Day

17 May 2008 | Hisham | | Family Pics

Last Friday, Irfan had his second ever sports event at his kindergarten during this years' Teachers' Day. This time, Atok and Opah Irfan was also present for the proceedings.

Last year it wasn't so apparent, but this year it was so obvious that Irfan towered over everyone else, and the photos here do not do his actual height real justice.

As Opah Irfan and I snapped away with still cameras, Atok Irfan wielded a video camera which I turned into a proper DVD video in the next couple of days. Irfan was asking Ain for drinks every a couple of seconds or so.

Here is a photojournal of what happened at the sports day.

Above: Irfan limbers up for whatever that the school has in store for him and his compatriots.


Nonja-busting Action - A Speed Racer Review

16 May 2008 | Hisham | | Movie Review

Mach 5 vs the Shooting StarI never saw a lot of the Speed Racer toon (Japanese title: Mach! Go! Go! Go!) on TV while growing up, but I did promise Irfan to take him to watch the new movie adaptation, directed by the Wachowski brothers.

I saw the trailer weeks earlier and went in with Irfan and Ain expected a dumb storyline with epilepsy-inducing special effects. I mean, how can you make a meaningful story with the protagonist's younger brother who was always climbing into the trunk of his car (with a monkey for a best friend) and getting into screwball adventures, as his elder brother races in dangerous car races.

And "Speed Racer" was his actual name, not just his job?

I was pleasantly surprised to find out that there is a solid, entertaining storyline with twists embedded satisfactorily within the movie, with just the right amount of drama and humour.

Yep! I loved Speed Racer!


Boy or Girl? DON'T TELL US! - Part 4

15 May 2008 | sila | | Family Pics

OK, as promised, here's a short video of the baby. I have a better one, but it's too long and larger than the allowable size. But in the meantime, enjoy:

A little hand movement


Boy or Girl? DON'T TELL US! - Part 3

14 May 2008 | sila | | Family Pics

So today, we went to do a 3D/4D ultrasound of the baby. Today (s)he is 31 weeks and 1 day old. The whole experience was awesome! We saw some facial features, we saw him/her move, even looked like (s)he yawned at one point. It was one of the best experiences ever! And we're not even worried that you'll be able to tell if (s)he is a boy or a girl. Seriously for these you won't be able to tell the baby's sex (because we can't). The lady who conducted the ultrasound was really really good, she didn't show us anything we didn't want to see, and tried her best to get the best shots of the baby. Take a look!


Of Romance, Sarcasm, Math and Language

13 May 2008 | Hisham | | Comics, Trawling The Net

Once upon a time I mentioned about a comic strip in this entry. Since then I've found out (for quite some time now) that the webcomic in question is xkcd - a webcomic of romance, sarcasm, math and language.

Usually the strip has only from one to four panels per comic. But once in a while they do epic storylines like the following one.

Strip originally conceived in conversation with Jeph Jacques.  Soon to be a major motion picture.

To learn what happens in the end, click here for the full strip.

Here are a couple more favourites:

And the prophetic classic: Action Movies, which we finally got after a fashion in the form of this TV show which I wrote about earlier.


Aerocarnival 2008

12 May 2008 | Hisham | | Family Pics

As I spent three full days over the weekend (plus Friday) manning the booth at Aerocarnival 2008 which was held at UniKL-MIAT, Ain, Irfan, Cik Emma and Cik Su went about the fair outdoors, taking photos among the static displays.

There were lots of kids looking for jobs in the aviation industry, wearing the wrong clothes for it and with bad haircuts. Needless to say I was a crazy old man with a shotgun yelling at the kids to get off the lawn.

Irfan and his mother and aunts arrive at the booth where I'm working.

Sisters, plus one Irfan and tongue


Baby's Already Getting Gifts!

10 May 2008 | sila | | Family Pics

I feel truly blessed and happy that not only are we having a baby soon, but people have cared enough to gift the baby with all sorts of cool stuff. I had to take pictures and show you the goodies that the baby has received even though (s)he isn't even due for over two months! :-)


Fabulous 'Friday' Five Meme

09 May 2008 | sila | | Friends

So Athena tagged us and since I've been so bad about blogging lately, I decided I would take it on! :-). Plus, conveniently, it IS Friday! So here goes:


1. To watch or participate?
Participate, preferably. I hate sitting around while other people do stuff. :-)

2. Malls, catalog shopping, or the Internet?
NEVER Catalog shopping. Malls for clothes (must...try...stuff...on... woi, gua not kurus like last time, ok??), and Internet for other things (Maggi mee, Spices, sometimes books, etc.)

3. A bath or shower?
Shower. I tend to take a shower anyway after a bath - I don't feel clean sitting in the water after a while. And I'm too hyper to be able to enjoy and relax in a hot bath. Sometimes I even work in the shower, that's how hyper I am.

4. To talk to people by telephone, in person or by e-mail?
Depends on who lah! ;-) Kidding, kidding. In fact, these days I talk to people mostly by IM since so many of us are hooked up from different time zones and locations. I do a lot of telephone talking for work, and certainly tons of email for both work and fun. Nothing beats hanging out with my friends in person lah, but since it's so hard for all of us to converge somewhere and get together, that is a pleasure that I don't get to enjoy as much as I would like.

5. Typing or writing?
Typing. Always. I complain if I have to fill out a form by hand these days... :-)

Hmmmm... who to tag??

1. PurpleD (kena balik, yo!!) :-)

2. Eliza

3. Simple American

4. PrecioussssPearl

5. Hisham (OK, I don't really read enough blogs to fill this tagging thing and the others that I know have already been tagged!)


I'd Pay Good Money To See This TV Show

06 May 2008 | Hisham | | Humour, Misc Sci-Fi, Trawling The Net, TV

So anyway, to cut things short io9 pitched in jest the idea for Star Trek: Captain Wesley Crusher, Starfleet Investigative Services starring Wil Wheaton. Here's an excerpt: Yes, the much maligned ensign should be brought back as the captain of a Starfleet science vessel that warps around the Alpha Quadrant solving mysteries for the Federation. Think of it as CSI . . . in space!

Wil says, "Thanks, but I think I'll pass."

Which is the title of his blog post.

But then, I got to thinking.

CSI... in space!

Well, thinking led to another thing and, voila...

Do a google search on Wheaton + clown + sweater.

It wasn't easy coming up with the script. It took me almost 6 hours to come up with something I was moderately satisfied with.


A Novel Tale of a Novel Cover

06 May 2008 | Hisham | | Artwork, Books, Misc Sci-Fi

Once upon a time, I went to study on how to repair flying machines.

During my dozens of years (not really, just 2 and a half years) of studying there were many instructors that taught me different aspects of flying machine repairs.

Some taught me metalwork, some taught me electrics, some taught me theory of flight.

One particular person taught me about turbine engines. He was a tall gentleman, he was.

Over the years after I returned home, I've always known from second hand accounts that he's now living in this country. In recent years, I've had the pleasure of meeting up with him again briefly.

Last month, he and his lovely wife came down all the way from Ulu Klang (which is about 10 klicks up the Middle Ring Road) asked me to produce a cover for a science fiction novel that he has written and is about to publish.

So I've used all my turbine engine skills and knowledge* to come up with this following cover:

A cover of a book...

This is only a draft. It might be used, or it might not. But one thing's for sure, I had a lot of fun conjuring up the painting.

Further details about the novel shall be written as entries unto this website when I get more information about it and its upcoming release.

*"...turbine engine skills and knowledge"? Not bloody likely.


Wait! WHO Wears Ten Rings? - An Iron Man Review

01 May 2008 | Hisham | | Comics, Movie Review

I don't monitor Iron Man as close as say Spider-Man or the X-Men growing up. However, I do know what he's all about. I've checked Armor Wars out of Perth Library (again, that's Scotland and not Australia) and read it entirely.

Two of the most iconic Iron Man cover for me is the "Demon in the Bottle" cover and the one where "Stark" in the Stark Enterprises logo is replaced with "Stane".

Earlier tonight, we went to catch Iron Man (on opening day) at Cineleisure. I'm not going to talk about the plot of the movie. It's a basic origins movie with a battle with a bad guy. It's not high literature, but it's a great action movie with lots of fun moments throughout. The Iron Man origin in the movie is transplanted from the original comic book location of Vietnam to Afghanistan.

So, I'm just going to list out what's good and not-so-good about it. And to preemptively sum up things, it's mostly good.

The Mark III suit

Spoilers ahoy!

I ain't joking. SPOILERS!