Cuckoo gone cuckoo (again)

Two to twelve.
That means I have to sit at my stairs landing, on a bean bag, for another 6 minutes or so. My cuckoo clock does not chime right at the hour. It has a 3 to 5 minutes delay.

It’s gone cuckoo again.
Not the way that it is late by 3 to 5 minutes.
It chimes… at times. It doesn’t at others.
When it decides, it may chime partially; like you get four cuckoos instead of 6 as dictated by the hour.

It bothers me. It’s a genuine Robert Lötscher Ltd cuckoo clock that has travelled five countries, two continents with me for 3 weeks before it made its way on my wall.

Well, one shouldn’t be upset, I guess.
Well, that’s what Val – my sister – had to say when I lamented about cuckoo being cuckoo.

Perhaps my timing was wrong. Val is in the midst of project managing her new home. To most suppliers she is the “architesh”. In her eureka moment she had decided to use her architect’s contacts for better discounts. In her not so eureka moment she was miffed when they asked her for her details and in a state of panicked she forgot how to spell architect!

Nonetheless with a sluggish economy, no one is going to seriously check if she is legit. Personally, I think she would have gotten the discounts nevertheless.

So, given the bulk of purchases and number of suppliers she deals with daily, defects are abundant at this juncture of her life. So, when I told her about cuckoo – which by all means of measure in terms of scale – the “problem” was small. Her level of empathy towards me, towards cuckoo and towards a nation was lacking;

Val: Hai! Bangla’s are the best employees you can have. Enthusiastic. Eager. Convincing. But that also means it’s a nightmare if you buy anything from them… Look at the lights I got from Tsen. Bangla. The bath from Kohl. Bangla. The ….

She trails on … she had lost me coz OMG! It was a Bangladeshi that sold me cuckoo in Lucern!

Now I know.

Don’t expect something named cuckoo to be sane.
Don’t expect anything sold with a great sales pitch to be a great purchase.


men! they just don’t listen do they?

OK. I shouldn’t be complaining. 
H finally delivered Hermes – after four transits with 3 immigration officers raising their eyebrows, causing unnecessary exchanges along the lines of:

yes, it’s a typewriter. You know, an old fashion mechanical one.” 
yes, yes, they still exist. yes, it’s in working order.” 
The “why?” question by the immigration officers is a tougher one to explain and I shall not bore you. Suffice to say, H got Hermes home and Hermes did have a small home coming party.
See, H “listen” only because he didn’t really have a choice.
Let’s say, I had listed down 8 choices of typewriters – ranked by preferences and furnished the list with enough technical and detailed information for a cave man to work a jetliner.
Simply put, the margin of error was so slim, that only time (arising from flight delays and transits) could deny Hermes from re-homing all the way from a wayward sleepy town 2.5 hours drive from central London. 
Read differently, with my Idiots Instruction for Men, every man I have known or shared any gift lists have remarked: “if only my {insert other half} does that. My life would be simpler.”
Point is, men! they just don’t listen, do they?
And here’s the most recent incident with not one, but two men on the same matter at hand: 
Bottega Veneta + iPad
I for one am not an embracer of electronic gadgets. 
  • I dread my Blackberry coz it’s work and more so, coz my work place is too cheap to get me a decent hardware.
  • I own a hand-me-down iPhone 4 (I think, could well be 4s – if there’s one) coz my older hand-me-down iPhone 3 from my 3-year old “died” and I needed to have my alternative private number going with a handy camera that’s decent enough for Facebook uploads.
  • I still miss my ol’ faithful Mac PowerBook G4 and kept it for 10 years! until it was brutally taken away from me by force.
  • I happily owned and watched a 14″ TV (you know, the rotund type with colour tubes at the back!) for years until the security camera company decided to take matters into their own hands by hooking it up to the security cameras and installing the flat screen TV (courtesy of a credit card company) in the rotund TV’s place – the flat screen being so flat has been lying against the wall in its original box for ages.
  • … and you get the drift …

So, it did come as a surprise when I bought a Bottega Veneta iPad case early this year. I do not own an iPad. I do not see a need or point in having one. 

{call me an irrational idiot, but uh huh, i did see a need want to buy a Bottega Veneta iPad case though}  
Let’s just say it was a distraction for me from buying the Ardoise Intercciato Nappa Convertible Bag, which even with a 30% off it was a small fortune…
And with that, I was on a mission to get myself to a Mac store and grab an iPad… until my girl friend, the very same one who handed me down the iPhone 4/s, mentioned that there was a little contest going on at work which she was in pole position to win due to the sales extension given to her by me! 
So, the wait started at the end of Q1 … with us checking in intermittently to know if “we” were still in pole position to win the iPad. 
Well, fast forward 4 months later – “we” WON! Instruction was given to the procurer was: do NOT get the iPad mini
As you will be able to guess how this story ends since the procurer is a man… well, the point is: men! they just don’t listen, do they?
 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
things to note:
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
Man buys things at the very last moment. 
The iPad mini was bought at the Hong Kong airport, just as he was about to board the plane to Manila … receipt including what he had to eat pre-boarding is in the bag! 
men! they just don’t listen, do they? (I) – coz whenever a woman talks, their brain is processing various other things that includes seriously trivial stuff or how to get into your pants!
He bought an iPad mini coz all he remembered /retained was “iPad mini” in the midst of thinking of other things …
men! they just don’t listen, do they? (II) and makes the stooopidest remark whenever a woman is upset like: “what’s the difference? they both work the same and a mini will fit into your handbag better
H said that when I told him how disappointed I was as the iPad mini is of no use to me given that it’s raison d’être (for me at least) was the Bottega Veneta iPad case …
men! they just don’t listen, do they? (III) and makes the most idiotic promises that upsets a woman even more like: “just buy another Boot-leg whatever and give the current case away
I am certain H will regret this statement if his credit card is swiped! and will remember for life that it is Bottega Veneta and not Boot-leg-whatever!!!


run ins with the traffic police

It’s been a pretty shite week.

First, I was stopped by traffic police by allegedly speaking on my mobile while driving.

Well, I was. But it was placed on speaker mode.

And no, I didn’t hold up the device to speak into the speaker, as he had said I was, but rather to plug in the car charger. Nonetheless, arguing about the details is just a waste of time.

Besides, I do speak on my mobile and speak into the speaker a lot in my current job while driving.

What can I do? I’m on the road so much, and if I’m not at a physical client place, I’m on some teleconferencing … so, technically, whilst the traffic police may have been wrong on the finer aspects of technicality here, I was not about to argue and defend as on the whole, I am generally guilty of the said offense.

That didn’t stop there. A few hours later, I got a call from my mom in a slightly hysterical manner saying there’s a traffic summon in the letter box. This was followed by a phone call from my sister in a gleefully mocking mode – she who drives like a daredevil and a road bully somehow gets away with it all the time!

I spent the next few days being a bit wary of the guys hiding under flyovers, bridges, bushes with a speed gun or a summons book. This of course is a it though, especially when it comes to speed guns.

See, I live and commute in Kuala Lumpur.

We generally crawl in traffic from 6:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m., with the ‘caterpillar’ formation resuming between 4:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Speed limits are really irrelevant – you’d be pleased if you hit 40km/hr. With this being the case, wouldn’t you think that driving at >80km/hr on the same stretches of highway leading into the city between the peak hours will be permissible?

Apparently NOT!

No concession here. Frankly, it’s almost impossible to keep to 70-80km/hr. I mean seriously, who drives at 70km/hr? besides the demented with sight and reflects challenges, which nonetheless should not be behind the wheels! It irks me to no ends to get summons of 92km/hr in a 70km/hr zone. I’d gladly pay if I’m clamming the gas pedal at 130km/hr and above. But 92km/hr?

Given that this “issue” is not going to be resolved my choices are simple:

…….. ONE  Quit for a desk bound job

…….. TWO Charge/ claim excess mileage in lieu of traffic offences summons

Well, both are easier said that done. Not even going into the morale issue of TWO, let’s just say, I was shocked and pissed to learn I have 5 speeding tickets in a 70-80km/hr zone over the last 6 months – now, that’s impossible to make false mileage claims even if I had wanted to.

Bah! And yet again, I pay more towards the development of this country… paying obscene amount of taxes yearly just doesn’t seem adequate.