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Saturday, February 28, 2009

Chow Yun-Fat Admits To Plastic Surgery

While many celebrities like to keep their visit to plastic surgeons hush hush, Chow Yun-Fat is the total opposite. This man is proud of the nip and tuck he has done. And mind you, he started long time ago!

Time to revisit the Hong Kong doc?

The Hong Kong actor admits to getting work done on his eyes when he was only 34 years old. "As I grew older, my eyelids began to droop. I began going for cosmetic surgery in Hong Kong when I was filming The God Of Gamblers in 1989," he said in an interview while promoting his new movie Dragonball in South Korea.

And he is willing to share his contact too! "If you go to Hong Kong for plastic surgery, I can introduce you to the doctor. He's cheap and good."

We bet Nicole Kidman has Fat Kor on her speed dial!

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Fasha Sandha vs Nora Danish: It's A Catfight!

[left] Fasha Sandha and Nora Danish make a good soap opera

Why oh why do Malay female celebrities like to go for rich married men?

Let’s take Fasha Sandha as an example. The gossip about her and socialite Rizal Ashram Tan Sri Ramli, who’s recently divorced from actress Nora Danish, is just getting hotter. (FYI, Fasha and Rizal have neither confirmed nor denied their alleged romance) It certainly doesn’t help that she and Nora are having war of words now.

Nora has openly accused Fasha of ruining her two-year marriage to Rizal.

“Fasha will never get to marry Rizal,” Nora unleashes her anger. “My former in-laws will never accept a husband snatcher into their family.”

But Fasha retorts back by saying, “When have I ever said that I want to marry Nora’s (ex) husband? If Rizal and his family got anything to say about me, the words should come from them, not Nora.”

Meow….the cat is already out of the bag….

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Obama unveils crisis budget - USD3.55 Trillion.

US President Barack Obama unveiled an anti-crisis budget yesterday as key global companies reported huge losses and Iceland's parliament ousted the central bank chief blamed in the country’s economic meltdown.

Obama rolled out an audacious US$3.55 trillion (RM13.06 trillion) budget bristling with economic fixes and spending on healthcare and climate change but warned “hard choices” loomed as he targets a huge deficit.

The plan includes more than US$600 billion over 10 years for a “down payment” on healthcare reform and a similar annual sum for defense, and encompasses Obama's drive to arrest the worst economic crisis since the 1930s.

“This budget is an honest accounting of where we are and where we intend to go,” Obama said at the White House,.

“There are some hard choices that lie ahead,” the president said, formally unveiling a budget which assumes major cost savings from a planned drawdown of the US garrison in Iraq which currently costs US$170 billion a year.

The US budget proposals project economic contraction of 1.2 per cent in 2009 and a deficit for the fiscal year ending September 30 of 12.3 per cent of US gross domestic product — the biggest deficit since World War II.

Some analysts said the economic assumptions are too optimistic.

But Cary Leahey at Decision Economics said administration officials “may feel they have to be cheerleaders for the economy and if they are too glum they don't want to have a self-fulfilling prophesy.”

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Oil jumps for second day in a row

Oil prices jumped for a second consecutive day yesterday as the supply of crude, for months a secondary consideration to rapidly declining demand, appeared to gain force as a market mover.

Light, sweet crude for April delivery jumped 6.4 per cent, or US$2.72 to settle at US$44.22 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Many analysts believe that the uptick in prices is temporary, and that the severe global economic downturn will depress prices further.

Alaron Trading analyst Phil Flynn said prices could dip again into the US$30 range with inventories near record levels.

In London, Brent prices rose US$1.21 to US$45.50 on the ICE Futures exchange.

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Styling solutions

L’oreal Professionnel Pot Motion Gelee
Make the most of your cut with the right products

L’oreal Professionnel Pot Motion Gelee (RM50) is formulated to define curls minus the stiffness.

To tousle up short hair, work in L’oreal Professionnel Craft Cosmic Mud (RM50).

To give your classic bob a smooth and silky finish, try Kerastase Oleo- Relax Anti Frizz Serum (RM78).

L’oreal Professionnel Craft Cosmic Mud
Wella High Hair Peppermint Pep
(RM49.50) gives shine and control for short to mediumlength hairstyles.

For sexy, just out-of bed waves, we like Redken Guts 10 (RM50).

To tame stubborn bangs, try applying Redken Real Control Mineral Elixier (RM65) before you reach for the straightening iron.

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Quick ways to update your hair

If you’ve had the same hairstyle for over two years, it may be time for a make over.

Here are some simple suggestions to consider.

Sex up your hair with curls
If you’ve had pokerstraight hair for the past few years, you may want to consider giving your hair a perm. It is a great way to add body, curls and bounce to your hair, particularly if yours is fine or limp. Before you dismiss perming as a granny move, consider the fact that there is now a dizzying array of perms and curls from which to pick.

Quick ways to update your hair
Taylor Swift

Perming 101
The type of curl that is produced from a perm depends on a number of factors.

“The size of the curler is perhaps the most important as this determines the size of the curl,” explains Keith Chin, senior hairstylist at Grace Salon. “Generally, the smaller the curler, the smaller and therefore tighter the curl, whereas medium to large curlers tend to result in a much looser and natural effect.” The strength of the perming lotion used can also make a difference, as can the texture and type of hair on which it is being applied. If you’re worried that you’ll end up with curls that are too small, ask your stylist to show you the type of rod she plans to use. Keep in mind that the tightness of the curls can vary, depending on the size of the rod and length of time the solution stays on your hair. Hair that is in great condition can “take” a perm much better than hair that’s unhealthy (such as dry, brittle, over-processed locks). Also, remember that fine hair curls more easily than coarse hair. Still not convinced? Why not show your stylist a photo of what you have in mind?

Digital vs normal perm
The biggest difference between regular and digital perm is the shape and the texture of the waves produced. “A digital perm utilises rods with a temperature regulator, resulting in curls that are softer and more manageable, said Chin. A normal or a ‘cold’ perm, on the other hand, makes waves prominent when the hair is wet and loose when dry. The downside: Cold perms tend to make hair look stiff. In contrast, a digital perm makes waves look prominent when dry and loose when wet, making it easier to style while your hair is damp. To amp up your curls, try working in a styling product of your choice and leaving it to dry.

If volume is what you’re after and prefer a perm that’s closer to your roots, a digital perm may not be for you as it involves the application of heat, which can burn your scalp. To give fine or limp hair a boost, Chin suggests a root perm at the crown to create a subtle “lift”.

With or without bangs?
“Although bangs can instantly add life to a boring haircut, it is always best to discuss it with your hairdresser before taking the plunge. Bangs can be challenging to deal with during their medium-to-long phases,” said hair stylist and trainer at Eco Hair and Beauty Academy, Samantha Lim. “Your hairdresser should have the expertise to advise you on whether the style you want will work well for you.” Consider the following before cutting:

Your hair texture
While perfect for naturally straight hair, or hair with light waves, bangs can be a nightmare for naturally curly or super wavy locks. If your hair is curly and unruly, remember that your bangs must be cut long enough to allow for curl and wave shrinkage. “If you have slightly wavy hair, try asking for thick, softly layered bangs and wear them to the side,” said Lim. “You may want to consider giving your bangs a perm if nothing else works.”

The condition of your hair
Bangs may not work well for hair that is prone to breakage or has been damaged by chemicals. Likewise, hair that is prone to oiliness may prove to be a problem when worn with bangs. The reason: Hair that is quick to grease up can look dirty and unkempt, and the first places likely to show this will be the roots and bangs.

The shape of your face
Oval Oval faces can take most styles and cuts well, including bangs.
Round Long, softly layered bangs that gently hug the cheeks to minimize the “roundness” are best for this face shape.
Long Blunt, browskimming bangs will help give the impression of a more oval-shaped face.
Square Side-swept bangs that gently curve or taper to the side will help balance out the sharp lines of this face.
Heart-shaped Bangs can help minimize a top-heavy heart shaped face or balance out a prominent chin.

The perfect cut
The first step to getting a great hair cut is to track down the right stylist. Once you find someone you are comfortable with, have a chat about what you want out of your hair cut. Browse through books and magazines to identify the types of cuts and styles you like, and discuss their suitability with your stylist. Below are some of the most coveted and frequently requested haircuts:

The gamine cut
The cut is invariably short (above the ears), and is similar to the “pixie” cut. Gamine haircuts are best suited to slim, lean women, with softer facial features. Although low-maintenance, this cut should be considered carefully as it requires the right features and atl Taken from this month’s Shape magazine titude to be carried off successfully.

To style this type of cut, Chin recommends using a hair dryer to blast dry the hair without using a brush. For a natural, tousled look, work in a wax, clay or mud to style. Stay away from gel and hair sprays as these tend to lend a stiff, unnatural finish to short hair.

The bob
More and more women are opting for short bobs, and for more than a handful of great reasons. Not only are they versatile and chic, but these type of cuts require little in the way of styling and maintenance (save for a regular trim). There are many different types of bobs to choose from, but generally, a bob’s length should be determined based on the shape of your face. To make things even more interesting, bobs can be evenly cut or cut at an angle, and given more edge with bangs. To create a versatile bob that’s fussfree at work but funky in the evening, Chin suggests a textured bob with side parting and a “messier” layered style at the back.

Long and layered
This is a great hairstyle for most face shapes because it offers plenty of movement and body. To avoid leaving your hair looking flat and lifeless, try opting for a cut with layers all around your head, suggests Chin. “A long and layered style will create more lift at the roots.” Adding layers offers other bonuses: Subtle curling of different layers for special occasions can create an elegant finish. Layers also provide a great platform for highlighting. This cut is fun to highlight.

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Dry hair solutions

Q - I’ve tried using many different types of conditioners to treat my damaged hair, but it’s still dry and brittle. Is there any way I can undo this damage?

It’s important to first determine the cause of your dry, brittle hair.

Some of the most common causes are: Sun damage, pollution, hair colouring, chemical treatments like straightening, relaxing and perming, and heat-damage from styling tools, such as curling and flat irons. However, chronic dryness can also be a sign of another underlying medical problem. If conditioning treatments don’t improve your hair’s moisture level it may be best to see your doctor.

MOISTURISE: When conditioning, be sure to cover all portions of your hair adequately and leave it in for several minutes

Typical signs of dry hair include: Brittleness, coarseness, frizz and dullness.

Follow these guidelines to revive your damaged hair:

• Shampoo 2-3 times a week, not daily. Washing your hair too often, especially with a harsh shampoo, will only strip away the elements that keep your locks moist. If your hair is dry, try washing it just two or three times a week using mild shampoo and conditioner, like Origins Knot Free Shampoo and Conditioner (RM43 each).

While shampooing, massage your scalp to stimulate the follicles and loosen dandruff or dirt that may be clogging your pores. When conditioning, be sure to cover all portions of your hair adequately and leave it in for several minutes. This will ensure that every strand is conditioned.

• Seal in the moisture. Microwave a teaspoon of Origins Organic Hair Oil (RM100) for a minute before applying it to your hair. The heat from the oil will open up your hair shafts, allowing it to penetrate and condition your hair further. Alternatively, apply the oil, then put on a plastic shower cap and wait for 15 minutes before rinsing with lukewarm water so the moisture in your hair shafts stay sealed.

• Avoid brushing and using heated styling appliances when your hair is wet. Instead, gently towel dry your hair, then slick on a serum that’s designed to seal in moisture and protect your hair from further breakage.

• Minimise your exposure to the sun and wind, and chlorinated water. You can reduce the damage being done to your hair by wearing a hat while outdoors and using a swimming cap in the pool.

• Load up on Omega-3 fatty acids. These fatty acids help keep your follicles healthy and your hair shiny. To get your fill of these hairloving nutrients, add more salmon, fish oil, walnuts and flax seeds to your meals.

• Trim your hair regularly. Dry or naturally brittle hair is more prone to developing split ends, so if it’s been a while since you’ve had a trim, it may be time to pencil

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A twist to the Alicafe experience

The Ambassadors: (From left) Rosyam, Farah and Adam

Enjoy a cup of coffee and dine on a variety of dishes at the newly launched Alicafe Restaurant at Kelana Mall in Kelana Jaya. The restaurant was launched recently and guests included Power Root ambassadors Rosyam Nor, Adam and Farah, who gave good reviews on Alicafe’s signature dishes.

“Here, we offer more than just a simple meal and drinks. We have created a comfortable meeting place for every Malaysian who embraces the Alicafe experience,” said franchise general manager Clement Toh.

Step into Alicafe and feel at home with its cosy ambience, local and western culinary delicacies.

Don’t forget to try the restaurant’s specialty — Basmathi rice cooked with coffee beans and in-house specialty drinks.

Diners can opt for reasonably priced beverages and dishes such as Alicafe (RM2.80), Alicafe ‘O’ (RM2), Nasi Lemak with Fried Chicken or Curry Chicken (RM6.80) and more.

TOTAL CONCEPT: The restaurant offers a variety of cuisine in a nice, cosy environment with friendly service

Guests will also be able to experience distinctive flavours with Alicafe’s uniquely formulated coffee and chocolate drinks as each drink has been carefully tested.

Alicafe believes in serving quality food and beverages and as such, all the ingredients are of high quality.

Alicafe Restaurant is the place to go to enjoy a cup of coffee, a variety of cuisine at affordable prices, and a nice, cosy environment with friendly service.

The restaurant is brought to you by Power Root Marketing Sdn Bhd, a local manufacturing company that specialises in instant coffee, tea, chocolate and energy drinks for the retail market.

Restoran Alicafe
50M-1 & 50N-1, Kelana Mall, Jalan SS6/14, Kelana Jaya, 47301, Petaling Jaya (next to Giant Hypermarket, Kelana Jaya) Tel: 03 – 7880 0319

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A Starbucks breakfast

A Starbucks breakfast

Starbucks introduces its new and improved breakfast sandwiches priced at RM4.50 each.

Choose from five varieties, including mushroom tom

ato and minced chicken omelette. The breakfast sandwiches will be served up to 2pm daily at Starbucks stores in the Klang Valley, Putrajaya, Genting Highlands and Seremban.

For Klang Valley folks, you’ll get to enjoy the sandwiches for RM3.20 with any purchase of a tall beverage.

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Magnets can keep crocodiles away

Florida wildlife managers have launched an experiment to see if they can keep crocodiles from returning to residential neighbourhoods by temporarily taping magnets to their heads to disrupt their "homing" ability.

Researchers at Mexico's Crocodile Museum in Chiapas reported in a biology newsletter they had some success with the method, using it to permanently relocate 20 of the reptiles since 2004.

homing instincts : Crocodiles good at finding their way back

"We said, 'Hey, we might as well give this a try'," Lindsey Hord, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission's crocodile response coordinator, said on Tuesday.

Crocodiles are notoriously territorial and when biologists move them from urban areas to new homes in the wild, they often go right back to the place where they were captured, travelling up to 16km a week to get there. Scientists believe they rely in part on the Earth's magnetic fields to navigate, and that taping magnets to both sides of their heads disorients them.

"They're just taped on temporarily," Hord said. "We just put the magnets on when they're captured and since they don't know where we take them, they're lost. The hope would be that they stay where we take them to."

Hord and his co-workers have tried it on two crocodiles since launching the experiment in January, affixing "a common old laboratory magnet" to both sides of the animals' heads. One got run over by a car and died, but the other has yet to return, Hord said.

Once an endangered species, American crocodiles' numbers have rebounded to nearly 2,000 in coastal south Florida, their only habitat in the continental United States. That puts them in increasing contact with humans, especially in areas where backyards border on canals around Miami and the Florida Keys.

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The best tech product of all time

The best tech product of all time
IN 1993, the Internet had already been in existence for more than two decades. But despite the personal computer having become more ubiquitous at the workplace, and finding its way into more homes, for most people the Internet was just an exotic term they'd read about occasionally.

Even when service was available, the learning curve required to explore this “Information Superhighway” was quite steep. It was mostly text-oriented that required archaic command input from the user to access and navigate.

The most important component to be introduced was the World Wide Web. Suddenly, a lot more people were finding their way to the Internet.

However, the Web browsers available at that time – like WorldWideWeb (later renamed as Nexus to avoid confusion) and ViolaWWW – still required a certain level of technical aptitude on the user’s part.

The best tech product of all time

And then came Mosaic, which was issued by the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois. Developed by Marc Andreessen and Eric Bina, Mosaic came with an interface that could navigate the Web by integrating text, graphics, and sound – quite a lot like the browsers we use now.

It was the killer application, with over two million copies downloaded the first year.

Upon his graduation, Andreessen was invited by Jim Clarke to form Mosaic Communications – which was later changed to Netscape Communications after the University of Illinois objected to the name.

At the end of 1994, the company produced the legendary Netscape Navigator – the browser that was to rule the Web roost until it was overtaken by Microsoft’s Internet Explorer in 1999.

AOL, which had bought Netscape that year, discontinued development and support of Netscape Navigator from February 2008.

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Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li

Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li
Another film adaptation of the famous Capcom’s Street Fighter series of video games will be released in cinemas today.

Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li follows the Street Fighter’s female character Chun-Li, who is played by Smallville star Kristin Kreuk, in her personal quest for justice after her father, played by Edmund Chen, was kidnapped from her in her younger days.

The 20th Century Fox film portrays a group of warriors who converge on the streets of Bangkok to prepare for the ultimate battle of terror versus beauty, light versus darkness and good versus evil.

Filmed in Thailand, Hong Kong and Canada, viewers can expect to see fistfuls of action sequences packed into a film that will attempt to inject a dose of realism into the classic arcade game.

The film co-stars Neal Mc- Donough as M. Bison, Chris Klein as Charlie, Michael Clarke Duncan as Balrog, and Black Eyed Peas singer Taboo as Vega. Rick Yune was originally cast as Gen but has been replaced by Robin Shou, who played Liu Kang in the Mortal Kombat films.

It is directed by Andrzej Bartkowiak, who also directed and turned the first person shooter Doom into a movie in 2005. He is also behind other action movies Exit Wounds and Romeo Must Die.

In conjunction with the release of the film, RAM Entertainment and PMP Entertainment are putting on the Street Fighter IV gaming tournament on Sunday, March 1.

The tournament will take place at the Day Atrium (Ground Floor Concourse) Cineleisure Mutiara Damansara at 4pm followed by a screening of the film at 5.30pm. Those who are interested in attending can email or call 03- 9282 7580/9282 8307.

Release Date: Today (26/2/2009)
Genre : Action
Director : Andrzej Bartkowiak Starring : Kristin Kreuk, Michael Clarke Duncan, Neal McDonough, Taboo, Chris Klein, Moon Bloodgood, Edmund Chen, Cheng Pei Pei, Josie Ho, Robin Shou

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Dragonball: Evolution

Coming soon to theatres here is the long-awaited, live-action motion picture Dragonball: Evolution based on the popular Japanese manga created by Akira Toriyama. Toriyama’s work spawned best selling graphic novels, videogames and a phenomenally successful television series.

The manga, series and games bring to the new film a rich mythology and exciting, complex characters – all of which have captivated millions of fans, of all ages, around the globe.

Since its conception in 2002, it has exploded into a global phenomenon that has generated more than four billion dollars in merchandising sales. It is considered the gold standard of anime-based video games, with more than 25 different games and over ten million units. The series – 500 episodes strong – posted top ratings in Europe, Asia and the US.

DRAMATIC: A scene from Dragonball: Evolution – photo courtesy of 20th Century Fox film Corporation

The motion picture features a cast of rising young stars and veteran acclaimed actors. Justin Chatwin, who portrayed Tom Cruise’s son in Steven Spielberg’s War of the Worlds, takes on the role of the heroic Goku, a powerful warrior who protects the Earth from an endless stream of rogues bent on dominating the Universe and controlling the mystical objects from which the film takes its name. Emmy Rossum (The Day After Tomorrow) is Bulma, a beautiful woman intent on retrieving the mystical Dragonballs for her own reasons; Jamie Chung (Samurai Girl) is Chi Chi, a young martial artist who captures Goku’s eye; and screen legend Chow Yun-Fat (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) is Roshi, the Master who guides Goku on the young man’s epic quest to save the Earth from the forces of darkness.

James Marsters (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) is Lord Piccolo, whose return could signal the Earth’s destruction; international performing sensation Joon Park is Yamcha, a charismatic “bad boy” whose schemes could thwart the heroes’ journey; popular Japanese actress Eriko (Heroes) is Mai, an assassin who works with Piccolo; Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters) is Sifu Norris, a Master and contemporary of Roshi’s; and Randall Duk Kim (The Matrix Revolutions) is Goku’s grandfather Gohan, whose lessons for Goku begin to prepare the young man for the monumental tasks that lie ahead.

Many of these actors underwent a rigorous training regimen under the auspices of the premier stunt performance company, 87Eleven, which has executed or designed some of the biggest action pieces ever seen on film, in pictures such as The Matrix, The Bourne Supremacy, Mr. & Mrs. Smith and 300.

The plot begins innocently enough in the backyard of Goku’s grandfather’s home, where Gohan is training the young man in some exotic martial arts moves. It is Goku’s 18th birthday, and Gohan’s gift to his grandson is a Dragonball, a small, round ball whose surface is smooth and pearl-like, but with a milky translucence that gives it depth. Four stars float inside the ball. There are only six others like it in the world, and it is said the seven Dragonballs together will grant the holder one perfect wish.

The film will premier here on March 12.

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A tribute to Gren

THE man known as George Grenville Pereira was a rare breed. He was a unique individual
in a class of his own who left an impression on everyone he met.

Born visually impaired, Gren, as he was fondly known as, found it tough to cope at regular schools.

So, doctors recommended that he be sent to a school for blind children. It was a decision that would change his life forever and one which would influence the music industry.

After seeking advice Gren was finally enrolled at the St Nicholas School of the Blind in Penang. It was here that Gren, discovered his destiny in music. He started off playing drums, then moved on to the guitar and keyboards. As passionate and talented as he was about music, he was a fast learner and quickly mastered the essence of each instrument.

Former teacher Catherine Cheong remembers how he used to thrill the students at the school with his playing.

All through his musical career, with the Falcons and the Alleycats, Gren played like his soul was on fire. His hands flying across the keyboard, delighting his audiences no end. There was no doubt about it. When Gren was in the house, the crowd wa s on their feet. When he left off playing with bands, Gren took to promoting them instead and became a well known music agent who found suitable spots for up and coming bands to play in.

Sadly, his life was too short. On Dec 5 last year, after a sudden heart attack, Gren passed on at the age of 57.

But Gren had a dream, which went unfulfilled with his death. He had always dreamt of paying back what his school had gifted him with. His plan was to set up a basic music studio at the school equipped with sound-proof rooms and as many instruments as possible.

Now, close acquaintances of Gren plan to make the man’s wish come true by having a fund raiser concert fittingly entitled ‘Tribute to Gren’ at the Wharf, Armada Hotel, Petaling Jaya on March 8.

The session will start at 2pm till 1am and all proceeds will be donated to the school which produced this pioneer of the Malaysian music industry.

Shyam Nair, one of Gren’s closest friends who was in the same industry for almost 20 years, said that Gren kept talking, just a few months before he passed on, about his lifelong ambition to organise a project, that would benefit the school for the blind which inspired him.

“We, his friends have set out to put together this concert which will showcase musicians from all over Malaysia and maybe even Australia. Most of the names need no introduction, including The Falcons, Alleycats, Heavy Machine, NRG, Fredo Bala and Alfonse Jerome and Friends and many others who were stars in Grenville’s time,” Shyam said.

“We have even set up a company called Grenville Promotions not only for this event but also to continue paying tribute to all those who have served the local entertainment scene. It was Gren’s idea to have something like this.

Whatever is collected from this event will be donated to the school in Penang where Gren virtually
grew up. We hope to have more such charity events in years to come,” said Shyam. He added that because of the economic crisis, many companies have been reluctant to sponsor the cause. “If you could donate anything at all, by all means please do so. If you have usable instruments lying around the house or other items such as computers, television sets or even a 5-litre whiskey bottle, we will accept anything.

Then, at the event we will auction these off and add the proceeds to the fund.” Shyam said that they hope to collect at least RM45,000 from the fund raiser and expect at least 600 people to attend.

Renowned radio dee jay, Radhakrishnan will be the emcee for the night which promises to be an exciting affair with a string of popular pub performers and former artists gracing the stage.

Tickets are being sold at RM10 per and include a meal.

For details on the ‘Tribute to Gren’ gala, you can contact Shyam at 012-257 5595 or the Armada Hotel at 03-7954 6888 for reservations.

Read More......

THE man known as George Grenville Pereira was a rare breed. He was a unique individual
in a class of his own who left an impression on everyone he met.

Born visually impaired, Gren, as he was fondly known as, found it tough to cope at regular schools.

So, doctors recommended that he be sent to a school for blind children. It was a decision that would change his life forever and one which would influence the music industry.

After seeking advice Gren was finally enrolled at the St Nicholas School of the Blind in Penang. It was here that Gren, discovered his destiny in music. He started off playing drums, then moved on to the guitar and keyboards. As passionate and talented as he was about music, he was a fast learner and quickly mastered the essence of each instrument.

Former teacher Catherine Cheong remembers how he used to thrill the students at the school with his playing.

All through his musical career, with the Falcons and the Alleycats, Gren played like his soul was on fire. His hands flying across the keyboard, delighting his audiences no end. There was no doubt about it. When Gren was in the house, the crowd wa s on their feet. When he left off playing with bands, Gren took to promoting them instead and became a well known music agent who found suitable spots for up and coming bands to play in.

Sadly, his life was too short. On Dec 5 last year, after a sudden heart attack, Gren passed on at the age of 57.

But Gren had a dream, which went unfulfilled with his death. He had always dreamt of paying back what his school had gifted him with. His plan was to set up a basic music studio at the school equipped with sound-proof rooms and as many instruments as possible.

Now, close acquaintances of Gren plan to make the man’s wish come true by having a fund raiser concert fittingly entitled ‘Tribute to Gren’ at the Wharf, Armada Hotel, Petaling Jaya on March 8.

The session will start at 2pm till 1am and all proceeds will be donated to the school which produced this pioneer of the Malaysian music industry.

Shyam Nair, one of Gren’s closest friends who was in the same industry for almost 20 years, said that Gren kept talking, just a few months before he passed on, about his lifelong ambition to organise a project, that would benefit the school for the blind which inspired him.

“We, his friends have set out to put together this concert which will showcase musicians from all over Malaysia and maybe even Australia. Most of the names need no introduction, including The Falcons, Alleycats, Heavy Machine, NRG, Fredo Bala and Alfonse Jerome and Friends and many others who were stars in Grenville’s time,” Shyam said.

“We have even set up a company called Grenville Promotions not only for this event but also to continue paying tribute to all those who have served the local entertainment scene. It was Gren’s idea to have something like this.

Whatever is collected from this event will be donated to the school in Penang where Gren virtually
grew up. We hope to have more such charity events in years to come,” said Shyam. He added that because of the economic crisis, many companies have been reluctant to sponsor the cause. “If you could donate anything at all, by all means please do so. If you have usable instruments lying around the house or other items such as computers, television sets or even a 5-litre whiskey bottle, we will accept anything.

Then, at the event we will auction these off and add the proceeds to the fund.” Shyam said that they hope to collect at least RM45,000 from the fund raiser and expect at least 600 people to attend.

Renowned radio dee jay, Radhakrishnan will be the emcee for the night which promises to be an exciting affair with a string of popular pub performers and former artists gracing the stage.

Tickets are being sold at RM10 per and include a meal.

For details on the ‘Tribute to Gren’ gala, you can contact Shyam at 012-257 5595 or the Armada Hotel at 03-7954 6888 for reservations.

Read More......

Ong knocks that Subang Jaya dinner

This is not the time for expensive dinners.

That is the view of Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Seri Ong Ka Chuan in response to the Malay Mail front-page story yesterday on the Subang Jaya Municipal Council’s extravagant RM216,800 dinner to honour its top employees.

The dinner at a five-star hotel in Bandar Sunway is scheduled to be held tonight and attended by 1,200 people.

ONG: Be prudent

“As a government agency, it should be prudent and thrifty in spending to reduce costs. Every ringgit of the taxpayers money should be used to enhance services to the public,” said Ong.

“This is not the time for government agencies to spend money on unnecessary items such as expensive dinners. They must be cognizant of the times we are in, and of the economic recession.”

In a move to save on government expenditure, the Finance Ministry via a Treasury Circular dated June 9 last year, announced that fovernment ministries and agencies are not allowed to hold official functions at hotels.

However, the freeze on government functions at hotels was lifted two months later, on Aug 13 last year.

The municipal council’s do at Sunway Hotels and Resorts to honour its staff and 25 councillors for their contributions will also see 100 employees being awarded RM1,000 each for their “stellar” performance.

This extravagance has drawn the ire of residents’ associations and NGOs.

Many lambasted the council for spending so much money on a dinner, especially in light of the current economic crisis.

Council presindent Datuk Adnan Md Ikhsan said during the council’s full board meeting on Wednesday that the amount was the lowest the council could come up with after getting a 40 per cent discount from Sunway Hotels and Resorts.

He also said that transportation and use of LCD screens were complimentary.

The spread, a five-course Chinese dinner, comes at RM95 per head.

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Duplicated phone number woes

ROSY is frustrated at finding out that another company shares her telephone number and further, wants an explanation from Telekom Malaysia Bhd (TM) as to why her line was disconnected although the number was listed under her name.

She says that her home phone began to ring continuously from about five weeks ago, but the calls were for another company.

Upon checking with the callers, she learnt that another company apparently had the same phone number.

She then checked with TM and was informed the number was registered as it should be under her name, and therefore nothing could be done by the telecommunications firm.

Then, to her surprise, she received a call from TM the next day - to investigate the same complaint, but on behalf of the other company!

During the call, ROSY says, the TM staff confirmed that the phone number was only registered under her name.

Even worse, she found that her phone line had been disconnected after that call from TM.

"For the past few weeks, those who dialed my number were connected to the other company instead! How is it that the number is registered under my name but my line is cut?" ROSY asks.

Even more puzzling is the discovery that her phone number has been assigned to the other company.

"Even though the number is registered to me, I now cannot use my phone, but the other party continues to use my number," she says, adding that subsequent complaints lodged with TM had gone unheeded.

• A TELEKOM Malaysia Berhad spokesman says the matter of ROSY's telephone connection disruption has been investigated and has since been rectified.

TM confirms, upon thorough investigation, the situation faced by ROSY was due to some technical glitches at TM's end.

"The customer, ROSY, has confirmed that both services, telephone and Internet, are in good working condition now."

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Smile, you're caught

Three burglars, one a woman, attempt a break-in but they didn't count on a concerned neighbour and his handy camera...

LOOKOUT AND THE RUN OUT: These images show the woman burglar on the lookout (pic 1). Her accomplice signals to make a run for it (pic 2) before escaping through the rubbish chute (pic 3) and to their getaway car (pic 4)

Hey lady, smile — we got you! Aren’t you the same woman who has been breaking into homes with your two male accomplices?

You three foreigners are now burglars caught in the act, thanks to an alert neighbour who has a video recording and photographs of your botched burglary in Puchong at 11.30am on Tuesday.

The video footage and photographs of your attempt to burgle the home of businessman Ricky Boey in Bandar Kinrara have been handed to the police.

The neighbour, a car mechanic who wished to be identified only as Hon, 40, got a clear shot of you in the car while you were making your getaway, empty-handed.

Shots of your accomplice escaping through the rubbish chute after Hon confronted him are also there for all to see.

The only thing we don’t know is whether you are all from the Middle East or Latin America, but you resemble the latter.

It all started when Hon and his wife were tutoring their daughter and the neighbour’s two dogs began barking.

From his window, Hon saw you, dressed in white, calling out for his neighbour.

You then hurled bits of food for the dogs that went silent immediately.

TRASH Chute ENTRY: Boey showing how the robbers had accessed his home compound on Tuesday

He was shocked when you, quite the agile one, climbed over the gate and unlocked the rubbish chute to let your accomplice in. Your other accomplice stayed in the car.

That’s when Hon began recording your crime.

Your accomplice who crawled in had a spanner and screwdriver in his back pocket.

You, in the meantime, went outside to keep a lookout.

You were looking the wrong way: You didn’t expect Hon, did you? At the porch, Hon confronted your accomplice who had managed to break the main door hinge.

He fled through the chute and to your now moving getaway car. Hon gave chase, grabbed a stick and hit your fleeing accomplice.

But he managed to get in — and you thought you made a clean getaway.

Too late idiots, you were all in a Toyota Wish MPV bearing the number WSB 3943, obviously rented or stolen.

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Friday, February 27, 2009

Nine die as aircraft crashes near Amsterdam


Flight TK1951 was within sight of the runway on its final approach to Schiphol airport when, without warning, it seemed to fall out of the sky and crashed tail-first into a field with the loss of at least nine lives.

Survivors described last night how, in a matter of seconds, the Turkish Airlines Boeing 737 from Istanbul to Amsterdam plummeted to the ground and split into three, leaving 84 of the 127 passengers injured, many seriously, and three of the seven crew members dead in the cockpit.

Investigators refused to speculate why the aircraft had descended too soon, or to comment on suggestions that its tail smashed into the ground as it tried to regain height or tried to execute an emergency landing. Dutch officials ruled out terrorism as a possible cause of the crash.

A British mother, Susan Lord, her Turkish husband, Jakavus Labeij, and their daughters, Sofia and Lisa, were among those who escaped, The Times understands.

Speaking from his hospital bed, one of the passengers, Tancer Mutlucan, a bank executive, said: “The pilot had announced that we would be landing in 15 minutes. Then about seven or eight minutes later we just crashed. There was not even time to worry about what was happening.

“First we thought it was just a violent landing but then we suddenly descended and there was impact. We suddenly found ourselves in a field.”

The Turkish Transport Minister said that it had been a miracle that more were not killed and that, perhaps because of the muddy conditions, there had been no fire or explosion as the two engines broke off.

“The chance of survival in plane accidents is close to zero. And this is a miracle,” Binali Yildirim said. “The fact that the plane crashed on soft ground and that there was no fire decreased the death toll.”

The emergency services at Schiphol, Europe’s fourth busiest airport, went into action within minutes of the aircraft skidding to a halt about 250 metres from the perimeter fence, less than a kilometre from the runway and next to the busy A9 highway, at 10.31am. The injured were taken to 11 hospitals, including an emergency army field hospital set up in Utrecht.

Officials said that 25 people were seriously wounded, with six in a critical condition last night.

Tomas Friedhoff, a student who was cycling past, said the aircraft appeared to have lost power. “The plane was nose up and the tail section at a 45-degree angle,” he said. “The tail section came down first, and broke off.

“Seconds after the crash people started exiting through the tail section. I saw dozens of people making it out very quickly, and as I was about to dial 911 the first sirens were noticeable, and within five minutes there were 10 or 15 ambulances.”

Survivors described a few seconds of silence after the impact, followed by the screams of those trapped and injured. “All of a sudden the back end of the plane dropped and then it crashed down on its front end and broke into three pieces,” a male passenger said.

“I was OK because I was in the middle. It was the people towards the tail and at the front who could not get out. I heard screaming. Near the tail there was a man with his feet stuck and people were kicking him to try to get his feet out.”

Another passenger said: “For the first ten seconds it was silent, and after that we heard crying and screaming. There was a lot of panic and a lot of wounded people.”

Candan Karlitekin, head of Turkish Airlines’ board of directors, said that conditions had been good. “Visibility was clear and around 5,000 yards,” he said. “We have checked the plane’s documents and there is no problem concerning maintenance.”

The airline’s chief, Temel Kotil, said that the captain, Hasan Tahsin, was a former air force pilot and very experienced. Officials said that the aircraft was built in 2002 and last underwent thorough maintenance on December 22. Turkish media said that a trainee was among the three pilots on board.

Investigators quickly retrieved the black box flight recorder but left the three dead crew in the cockpit for several hours while they examined the scene for clues.

One of the first rescuers on the scene, John Ansgar, who was driving past when he saw the aircraft fall, said: “Fourteen people got out of the plane almost straight away. When I got inside all the oxygen masks were hanging down. There were people stuck in the back and we just couldn’t help them. There weren’t enough stretchers for everybody.”

A farmer’s tractor joined the emergency services, ferrying the injured and dead across the field in a trailer.

One passenger, Huseyin Sumer, said: “One of the hostesses ran towards me, screaming. There was panic as we left the aeroplane. We noticed that the aeroplane had split. We just threw ourselves out of the gap.”

Times Online

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Hard Boiled Eggs

Short cut to cook hard boiled eggs......a fantastic discovery.

Cooking hard boiled eggs can be a hassle because you have to kor hui (jaga api) or kor chui (jaga air). This method of cooking the eggs whereby you don't have to worry whether they are over-cooked or under-cooked.

1) Place two pieces of tissue paper inside the rice cooker and sprinkle them with water.

2) Put in the eggs.

3) Close the lid and press "Cook" button.

4) Wait till the button jumps up. When it does, TURN OFF THE ELECTRICITY POWER. Do not leave them too long inside the rice cooker after cooked ...only do so if you prefer a harder egg yolk.

5) The eggs are ready.

The speed is faster than using ordinary boiling method. This is because the water sprinkled on the tissue will turn into steam and compressed inside the rice cooker to cook the eggs. You can peel the egg shells off very easily. The egg yolks will turn out just nice, not too dry. And the best part is -you don't have to do any washing nor cleaning at all.

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Friends for life

Friendster proved more successful than an online matchmaking service to newlyweds, Chew Phye Boon and Shirley Ng

Before the birth of Facebook, Friendster was the social networking website to find old friends and discover new ones. Four years ago, Chew Phye Boon was browsing through Friendster when he found Shirley Ng’s profile. Her job title – nuclear energy analyst – piqued Chew’s curiosity so he shot her a message asking "What exactly does a nuclear energy analyst do? Ng says, "I thought this guy was trying to pick me up. That he was trying to be funny. Obviously it wasn’t a real job!"

They didn’t hit it off but fate intervened and the two found themselves connected via Yahoo messenger. This time, the conversation was interesting enough to warrant a face-to-face meeting. But Ng was apprehensive about the idea. She says, "I called my friend and told her I was meeting this guy and if you don’t hear from me, call the police."

Ng found the 31-year-old IT analyst a little cocky online, "But in real-life he was so tongue-tied! He was really different. Very nice." Unfortunately Chew felt his date talked too much and had a mean streak. Once more, sparks didn’t fly and the 27-year-old marketing executive told friends that nothing would ever happen between them.

Nonetheless Cupid’s arrow hadn’t given up on them and somehow the two started talking again. Their phone banter would last until the wee hours of the morning and on one particular morning they were still chatting away when the clock struck five. At one point during the conversation, Chew thought Ng was hinting that he reveal his feelings for her so he confessed, "Actually I kind of like you." He heard crying on the other end of the line and by the time things got sorted out, it was 6am.

The next day, Ng had doubts about whether Chew was the right one for her. A newbie to serious relationships, she wanted to make sure this one lasted. At the very least, he fulfilled her first three criteria – doesn’t smoke, drink or gamble. His patience eventually won her over. "We’ve never quarrelled because he’s patient. He doesn’t retaliate. You can’t argue with someone who doesn’t argue back," says Ng. "The one thing that made him stand out from the rest is that we could talk about anything. We share the same goals like having a family. We don’t have secrets. I can tell him things and not feel embarrassed."

Chew, on the other hand liked the way his girlfriend made him smile and laugh. "It’s nice being with her. I never get bored because she always entertains me." The couple finally decided that being good friends just wasn’t good enough and last year, Chew proposed to Ng.

He took his girlfriend to a restaurant and presented her with a huge box. Inside the box lay a 3-D replica of Roald Dahl’s "Charlie & The Chocolate Factory" and a stack of cards which read, "10 things why I love you". On each card were anecdotes about all the instances the couple had shared during their three years together. When Ng reached the final card, it bore a question mark. That’s when Chew retrieved the ring from the "factory" and proposed. Instead of responding with an enthusiastic "Yes!" Ng laughed and asked her boyfriend whether he had sought her mum’s permission. Luckily, Chew had done the necessary and approached Ng’s mum who quickly fished out a Chinese calendar and gave her blessings, agreeing that it was a good day.

The couple decided on a traditional Chinese wedding which meant the groom had to battle through the time-honoured "chip san leong" (retrieval of the bride) ceremony. Chew and his friends were made to take something sweet (strawberry milk from a baby’s bottle), sour (lime), spicy (wasabi) and bitter (bitter gourd) before the bridesmaids were willing to let Chew take his new bride home!

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Food fest to draw 100,000

THE Penang International Food Festival 2009 which features three major events – Battle of the Chefs, iFoodEx and Penang Local Food Delights -- will be held from March 13 to 15.

Kee (second from left) and PTAC manager Chin Yin Fat
(left) with other sponsors promoting the Penang
International Food Festival 2009.

The event, to be held at the Penang International Sports Arena (Pisa), is expected to attract up to 100,000 visitors.

The 12th Battle of the Chefs Penang International Salon Gastronomique will showcase the culinary skills of chefs from all over the world.

iFoodEx, touted to be one of Malaysia’s largest consumer food exhibitions, will see more than 100 exhibitors showcasing food ingredients and utensils.

Both Battle of the Chefs and iFoodEx will be held inside Pisa while Penang Local Food Delights, a food fair with more than 100 stalls offering local hawker fare and specialities from seven other states, will be held outside the Arena.

In announcing the event, Penang Tourism Action Council (PTAC) chairman Datuk Kee Phaik Cheen said The Penang Foodie Directory will also be launched during the event.

"This 200-page directory will feature 500 selected food and beverage outlets in Penang," she said.

She said the federal government has allocated RM500,000 for the event and 1,500 banners advertising it have already been put up in the city.

"We will also be distributing 150,000 flyers on the event to houses, clubs and associations in the state," she added.

Kee said many interesting activities have been lined up throughout the three days, including live band performances, cultural shows, eating competitions and even Fear Factor-style games.

The Penang International Food Festival 2009 is open to the public from 11am to midnight throughout the three-day fest. Admission is free.

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Watch it, you could lose your pants

Azuan: Wallet was stolen while he was in toiletNeccessity, it is said, is the mother of invention: And both can come into play in the city's public toilets where inventive pickpockets could make off with your pants when you answer nature's call.

Malay Mail has learnt that thieves have been targeting shoppers especially at the toilets of Kuala Lumpur’s shopping malls.

While the victims are naturally preoccupied, these thieves would be in the adjacent cubicle — acting quickly to pick the pants’ pockets or, in some cases, running off with the trousers altogether.

“We suspect that these individuals would remove the original hooks placed at the door and install their own hooks in positions at either the sides or the back of the victim,” said a security guard at a popular shopping mall

MCA Public Services and Complaints Department Head Datuk Michael Chong yesterday highlighted a recent case where Ogawa salesman Wong Wei Chiat, 23, from Cheras was in the first floor toilet of BB Plaza, along Jalan Bukit Bintang, when his pants were picked late last year.

REENACTMENT: This is how the pickpocket would strike at a public toilet“When I was done, I noticed my pockets seemed lighter as I was leaving the toilet,” said Wong, adding that he lost his identity card, RM50 and various credit cards kept in the wallet.

He later learnt that the thieves had then used his Eon Bank Gold Mastercard to purchase a RM2,400 watch in Masjid India.

“When I lodged a police report, I was informed that I was lucky to still have my pants as mine wasn’t the first such case reported to the police,” said Wong.

Feeling frustrated and helpless, he returned to the toilet and removed the hooks, but found that new ones had been fitted some time later.

Chong advised: “Be aware the next time you go to toilet or where you place your trousers. If you’re afraid, try not to take it off at all. Police should be investigating this. Shopping complexes should also beef up security.”

Another victim said he lost his wallet just a week ago, but was lucky as nothing valuable was stolen.

Taxi counter salesman at BB Plaza, Azuan Arif Alias, 35, said: “When I was in the cubicle, my wallet disappeared.

“I found it dumped at a corner a few days later.”

A businessman actually lost his pants two years ago. He had to wait for one of his workers to bring another pair before he could leave the toilet.

A spokesperson from the BB Plaza management said they received no reports concerning such cases but were aware of them happening in shopping centres.

Police, unable to confirm the frequency of such types of crimes at Press Time, said there were similar reports made at the Dang Wangi police district.

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Free rooms for Singaporeans

In a hard sell to promote Sarawak, the ‘Land of the Hornbills’, is offering free rooms to Singaporeans at a local travel fair here this weekend.

The Sarawak Tourism Board (STB) is launching its free room packages at the National Association of Travel Agents Singapore (Natas) Travel Fair, to be held at the Singapore Expo this Saturday.

STB said yesterday the state’s Minister of Urban Development and Tourism Datuk Michael Manyin would launch the free room packages at the Tourism Malaysia booth.

In a media release here, STB said the package would be offered to anyone who purchased a three-day, two-night stay in Sarawak which entitled them to an additional one night stay, free of charge and valid until this December.

The package is also offered by airlines, among them being Malaysia Airlines and AirAsia.

STB said Singapore-based PYO Travel was working with AirAsia and offering the free room package at Tune Hotel at the Waterfront in Kuching with the purchase of any air ticket to the state capital.

Like AirAsia, MAS is also working with Hilton Batang Ai Longhouse Resort in offering the one free night’s stay with the purchase of an air ticket to Kuching, said STB.

Apart from MAS and AirAsia, local airlines SilkAir and Tiger Airways also fly directly from Singapore to Kuching.

From this Sunday, Jetstar Asia Airways will also fly directly to Kuching.

STB said among the hotels in Sarawak that would be participating in the package were Merdeka Palace Hotel and Suite, Four Point by Sheraton Kuching, Hilton Kuching Hotel, Grand Margherita Hotel, Riverside Majestic Hotel, Borneo Highlands Resort and Somerset Gateway Hotel.

Sarawak, which received a total of 4.3 million visitors in 2007, hopes to double or triple the number of tourists from Singapore which numbered about 41,000 last year.

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Hey doc, don’t ‘touch touch’ your female patients lah!

I HAVE a good friend who is a doctor. He operates his own clinic. He is a nice fellow, ever willing to lend a helping hand to the less fortunate. If his patients are too poor to pay for medication, he would not charge them. Whenever he is approached for donations, he would give generously.

But my friend has a dark secret.

There was a time when I started hearing complaints from his female patients that the doctor has ‘itchy’ hands and is a sex pervert. I did not believe the allegations against him. Why, surely it was not possible for this wonderful man to be doing those awful things to women in his clinic.

I remember one occasion when I confronted him over the complaint by one of his woman patients. He denied outright all the allegations against him. I believed him then — why not, he was a decent guy and I knew him all along as one.

It was only several years later that I found out the truth.

Later, I met a mutual lady friend. And was I shocked with what I heard when our conversation descended on our doctor friend. She was also his patient previously and the few times she went to his clinic for consultation, he would act in a manner not befitting that of a doctor. He would start caressing her arms and shoulder as if to give her a massage but that was unnecessary and not in tune with her ailment. Call it molest, seduction or whatever — that was certainly most unprofessional!

So now, I know all the complaints in the past against him were true. There was no reason for our lady friend to lie — it’s not a very nice thing to talk about too. But I’m glad she did. And I would end the subject about my doctor friend here for he’s suffering from a ‘sickness’ (or a fetish) and I have no intention to cause him more pain.

I brought up the misbehaviour of my doctor friend because I find it worrying to learn that at least five doctors are found to be suffering from mental illnesses every month in the country.

According to the director-general of Health, Tan Sri Dr Mohd Ismail Merican, these doctors were either psychotic or neurotic but still managed to get into medical schools because these schools were not screening students meticulously enough.

“The mental cases range from psychotic to neurotic. Psychotic cases include delusions and hallucinations, and neurotic behaviour includes anxiety, fear and anger due to the competitive environment,” said Dr Ismail.

These medical graduates, totalling about 60 cases a year, are unable to cope with their housemanship as they may have been pressured by their parents to take up medicine.

About 2,000 medical doctors are registered annually from 21 local medical schools and 400 recognised schools overseas.

Most of the mentally ill students, he said, could have undergone pressure and depression while studying and faced difficulty in coping in a hospital environment.

Higher Education director-general Prof Datuk Dr Radin Umar Radin Sohadi said the ministry was currently reviewing universities’ curricula to ensure high standards in medical education and training for doctors.

“Uppermost on our minds will be the safety and well-being of patients,” he said.

The key words here are the ‘safety’ and ‘well-being’ of patients. When we bring people, be they our parents, children, wife or others, to see a doctor, we expect professional attention from him or her. Granted, there are good and bad doctors, the highly qualified and not-so-qualified, the skilful and not-so-skilful but as long as they are decent people and do not misbehave around their patients, I suppose we can say it’s okay-lah.

Doctors are also highly respected people — they are the intellectuals, the educated and the learned.

They stand out as the crème of the elite in our society who can even be called God-like because unlike a butcher who uses his knife to kill, surgeons use the knife in an entirely different manner to cut and give life to fellow humans who are ailing and suffering from various complications.

Doctors are governed by a strict code of professional ethics and the ordinary man and woman goes for consultations into their private rooms with implicit faith in them and on the premise that they are kind, courteous and even saintly.

But when doctors hide behind a professional uniform of a white coat and misbehaves and breaks the trust the public places on them, then they become liabilities to their dignified profession, Breaking the sacred code of ethics of the medical profession, the errant doctor simply allows the whole profession to stink to high heavens.

We know there are many such doctors around but to learn that there are at least five doctors found to be mentally unsound every month is not very comforting. One year, there will be 60 of them on the prowl, ten years 600 of them are on the loose. Surely, we are bound to cross path with one of them at one time or another. And mind you, the figures are only from medical personnel serving with the government. How many more of them are in private practice?

The same day, the Health D-G revealed the figures of mentally unstable doctors, there was a story of a 26-year-old nurse lodging a police report against an amorous doctor who molested her while they were alone together inside the X-ray room at a private hospital in George Town. See what I mean.

I think it is important for all to realise that if we are unable to take up the huge challenges of becoming a doctor, then I don’t think we should be in the profession.

Parents should also not force their children to take up medicine if they are not interested in it or show no inclination towards sharing their lives with the diseased, the sick and dying. It’s not actually difficult to be a doctor if you are academically sound but to live the life of a doctor and abide by its strict code of ethics ain’t easy.

I hope that apart from conducting psychiatric observation on potential doctors, the Health Ministry should also check if medical students could withstand the pressures of being a doctor. If not, they should be advised to turn to other vocations.

I think unprepared and unhappy doctors can be real weirdos who can turn into monsters or sex perverts particularly with patients of the opposite sex.

Many doctors will not take my statement kindly, I’m fully aware of that. However, isn’t it true that some of your colleagues in the medical profession do misbehave and had acted most unprofessionally at times. At least, I know one who did.

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Guan Eng to Utusan : See You In Court

Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng has denied a report in Utusan Malaysia today that the state had established an inter-faith council last year.

"These are lies against me, DAP and also Islam. We have no such council and we don’t even know where the (source got the information) from," he told reporters in Parliament today.

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Thursday, February 26, 2009

DS Nizar got 97% voter says YES!

This is the video showing recent poll in matters of Datuk Seri Nizar should seek motion of confidence for himself as legimate Perak MB...

Walawey.................. How bout BN now? Keep Silent? After kick out by Speaker? :) We'll wait and see.. :P

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Gone with flying colours

How hard could it be to locate a man dressed head to toe in purple, complete with handcuffs, in Padang Besar, Perlis?

Quite difficult, apparently. Cops are baffled as to how the suspected motorcycle thief had managed to escape the Padang Besar police station on Wednesday. The 21-year-old from Kampung Melayu, Padang Besar, after being brought back from the Kangar Magistrate Court, was having lunch with other detainees at the station when he excused himself to go to the toilet. When the man, dressed completely in purple lockup attire, failed to reappear, the cops checked and found him gone. They believe the suspect had walked out the back door and scaled the perimeter fencing behind the station to make his escape.

We wonder if anyone bothered to check the bike shed.

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Snatch thieves hit Golden Triangle

THE wife of a foreign participant in the Microsoft TechEd 2008 event lost her handbag to a snatch thief on Sunday. But as a country, Malaysia may have lost more than that.

Following the incident, Wilson L. Chua of the Philippines posed this question on his blog under the title, 'Mugged in KL, Malaysia', citing: "As we are in Malaysia to attend the TechEd 2008, my suggestion to Microsoft, in the future, could you consider a safer country such as Singapore for your next event? (Just wondering guys!)"

Chua, a web-hosting solution expert, and his wife were headed from their hotel to St Andrew's Church. They were on Jalan P. Ramlee walking in the same direction as vehicular traffic when the snatch thief struck. It was about 6.10pm.

"When we were taken to the police station, we waited in line as there was a family ahead of us who were also attacked by an identical motorcyclist roughly on hour earlier in the same area," said Chua.

"Due to shock, neither my wife nor I took down the licence plate number. However, the family ahead had a witness who jotted down the number."

Chua and his wife had arrived in KL only six hours before the incident.

A passer-by directed them to the tourist police outpost at Saloma Bistro, Jalan Ampang.

From there, they were taken in a police car to the station where the report was lodged.

"The police were efficient, courteous and a saving grace for the mishap that happened to us. I commend them for the advice they gave us and the kind treatment and attention they gave my wife and I," added Chua on the blog.

One piece of advice given was to walk against traffic, which Chua and his wife intend to do for the rest of their stay in KL.

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A day without Elizabeth Wong

Bukit Lanjan State assemblyman Elizabeth Wong is an elusive figure nowadays and understandably so.

The nude controversy she is mired in has made her a much sought-after personality.

However, attempts to locate her yesterday were futile.

An air of abandonment hung over her house at No 22, Jalan 5/69 in Taman Gasing Indah when our team went there yesterday.

While we could not ascertain if this was her current address, the house address matched that in her profile on the Selangor State Secretariat (SUK) website. Boxes and some gardening tools were in disarray in the compound.

Meanwhile, her service centre had remained closed from over the weekend, claimed a staff at the Petaling Jaya Municipal Council’s service centre opposite it.

On her blog (, Wong had stated that she would be at her community service centre at the BU3 community hall every Wednesday from 6pm to 8pm.

The blog said that the centre would be open between 9am and 6pm, Mondays to Fridays.

Areas under the Bukit Lanjan constituency comprise Bandar Sri Damansara, Bandar Utama, Damansara Damai, Damansara Perdana, Desa Jaya, Kampung Kayu Ara and Mutiara Damansara.

The council staff we spoke to said there would be one staff manning Wong’s service centre but there had been a no-show since Monday.

She could not say if anyone else had dropped by the centre in the last two days.

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For the cows

Pic: Razak Ghazali

SOME 100 residents of Bandar Tun Razak and representatives from 46 surau and mosques around the constituency came out to show their support for Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim.

The crowd started gathering around 2pm and Bandar Tun Razak division secretary Ishak Hamzah chaired a Press conference where representatives of the surau and mosques read out their Press releases.

In the statement, Surau Al-Firdaus chairman Ghazally Salim said the 46 cows they received for Hari Raya Aidiladha were from the Selangor Development Corporation and not related to the Menteri Besar in any way.

Soon after, the crowd took to the streets and made their voices heard by holding up banners and signs. Despite the heavy police presence, the crowd, that included men and women of all races, chanted “Reformasi” several times before dispersing.

Last Wednesday, it was reported that the Selangor MB was being investigated by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission following a report alleging that Khalid had used State funds to pay for the cattle worth RM110,400.

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Mob attacks TV3 crew

A TV3 crew on routine rounds in the city last night was attacked by a mob of some 20 Africans and locals outside a Taman Connaught pub. Reporter Puspavathy Ramaloo, 32, said she and two cameramen stopped their car not far from the pub about 11 last night. One of the cameramen, who did not want his name used, walked towards the pub after spotting a large group gathered outside.

END OF TRAUMA: Puspavathy and her colleagues with their police reports

There, he found a few liquor and beer bottles on the floor outside the pub and began to film the scene. However, the group of Africans, a number of local Indians and a local woman, accused him of filming them drinking and a row started.

The group then went after the cameraman, who ran towards the car. They caught up with him and three of them beat him up. Puspavathy tried to reason with the crowd, by they ignored her.

The three continued to hit the cameraman, one of them using a bottle. They also seized his camera.

Puspavathy in the meantime called on the other cameraman to film the incident. She then told the three attackers to cease and return the camera, or she’ll call the police. She showed them her media tag, after which the three fled, with the camera, while the rest went back to the pub.

The first cameraman suffered injuries to both his hands and bruises on his head and neck, where he had been hit with the bottle.

Meanwhile, the woman in the crowd, who had been aggressive and abusive, spotted the second cameraman filming them, came back with the rest of the mob and they attacked him, injuring him in the hands and abdomen.

They too seized his camera and media tag and left.

The TV3 crew members made their preliminary report at the Taman Maluri police beat base.

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Proton MPV out next month

NEW IN THE PROTON STABLE: Syed Zainal with the MPV concept modelThe first production batch of the new multi-purpose vehicle (MPV) by Proton Holdings Bhd is set to roll out of the factory on Sept. 12, said managing director Datuk Syed Zainal Abidin Syed Mohamed Tahir yesterday evening at an analysts' briefing.

The first units of the MPV would be used for safety testing and road durability for certification purposes ahead of the model's scheduled launch in March next year.

While the exact specifications have yet to be disclosed, it is understood that Proton is aiming to price its latest model around the RM75,000 range, excluding accessories, road tax and insurance.

The chassis for the MPV is a new platform that would be used for variants to be developed over the next few years but the engine will be the 1.6-litre CamPro that is currently fitted into the Gen-2 models. The seven-seater will have 15-inch tyres as a standard fit, with either automatic or manual transmissions.

The public would be invited to submit possible names for the MPV in a contest that Proton intends to launch next month. During testing over the next few months, alert members of the public could probably spot the new MPV being driven on the roads around the country.

On other models, Syed Zainal said the new Saga has become the fastest selling Proton model ever, chalking up over 80,000 bookings since its official launch in January this year.

He admitted that the overwhelming response has caused some delays in deliveries, with only some 40,000 cars registered so far. However, Proton has ramped up its production lines to output 7,500 cars from next month compared to 4,500 units originally produced on a monthly basis.

On the Persona model launched last August, he said that over 55,000 units had been booked so far.

Looking forward, Syed Zainal said that Proton would be looking to develop a CamPro turbo engine and also a diesel engine by next year to provide more alternatives to customers.

With this range of model options, Proton aims to boost its exports such that about 70 per cent of its revenue would come from overseas sales by 2016.

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Eating less helps older people remember better

Those who restrict their caloric intake the most exhibit the most striking improvement in memory and cognitive skillsHamburg (Germany): Yet another incentive for older people to lose weight has come from a team of German researchers, who say that reducing caloric intake can help older people to remember better. The researchers at the University of Muenster in Germany found that memory and cognitive skills showed marked improvement among healthy, overweight subjects who cut their caloric intake by 30 per cent over a three-month period.

But unlike conventional “weight-reduction diets” which focus on cutting specific food groups, the German test subjects were not told which foods to avoid.

Instead, the 49 men and women with a median age of 60 were divided into three groups. The first group were told to eat as they normally would. The second group had a similar diet but were given a higher proportion of unsaturated fatty acids, such as those found in olive oil and fish.

The third group were told to strictly reduce their caloric intake, while making sure not to drop below 1,200 calories a day. They were told that they were to avoid crash-dieting, but that they should eat about a third less than they normally would.

After three months, there was no difference in memory scores in the first two groups, but the 50 in the third group performed better.

The average weight loss was 2.5 kilos per person. Those who adhered most strictly to the guidelines and reduced their intake by up to 30 per cent lost an average 3.5 kilos.

Those who restricted their caloric intake the most also exhibited the most striking improvement in memory and cognitive skills, according to Dr Agnes Floel, assistant professor of neurology at the University of Muenster.

“To our knowledge, the current results provide first experimental evidence in humans that caloric restriction improves memory in the elderly,” she wrote in a report published in the online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“The present findings may help to develop new prevention and treatment strategies for maintaining cognitive health into old age,” she added. However, Floel stressed that the test subjects had been instructed to avoid crash-dieting.

They were admonished to eat a balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals and nutrients. They were told they must not reduce caloric intake below 1,200 calories per day.

Floel said more research is needed and added that a larger study is being planned.

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The vitamin myth

The largest study ever of multivitamin use in older women found the vitamins did nothing to prevent common cancers or heart disease.

The eight-year study in 161,808 postmenopausal US women echoes recent disappointing vitamin studies in men.

RISKY STUFF: Limit red meat intake to prevent common cancers or heart disease

Millions of people spend billions of dollars on vitamins to boost their health. Research has focused on cancer and heart disease in particular because of evidence that diets full of vitaminrich foods may protect against those illnesses. But that evidence doesn’t necessarily mean pills are a good substitute.

The study’s lead author, researcher Marian Neuhouser of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centre in Seattle, offered this advice: “Get nutrients from food. Whole foods are better than dietary supplements,’’ Neuhouser said.

The study appears in Monday’s Archives of Internal Medicine. Co-author Dr. JoAnn Manson said despite the disappointing results, the research doesn’t mean multivitamins are useless.

For one thing, the data are observational, not the most rigorous kind of scientific research. And also, it’s not clear if taking vitamins might help prevent cancers that take many years to develop, said Manson, chief of preventive medicine at Harvard’s Brigham & Women’s Hospital.

FRESH: Eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables dailyShe said multivitamins may still be useful “as a form of in- The vitamin myth surance” for people with poor eating habits.

The study involved an analysis of data on women in their 50s and up who participated in long-running government studies on postmenopausal women. Almost 42 per cent of the women said they used multivitamins regularly.

After about eight years, roughly equal numbers of vitamin users and nonusers developed common cancers, heart attacks and other cardiovascular problems. Overall, there were 9,619 cases of cancer, including cancers of the breast, lung, ovary, colon and stomach; and 8,751 cardiovascular ailments including heart attacks and strokes. In addition, 9,865 women died, also at similar rates in multivitamin users and nonusers.

Alice Lichtenstein, a Tufts University nutrition professor who was not involved in the research, said the study is important because it involved so many women.

“All the evidence keeps pointing in the same direction,” Lichtenstein said.

Eric Jacobs, an American Cancer Society epidemiologist, said while his group doesn’t advise vitamins to prevent cancer, it does recommend maintaining a healthy weight and eating at least five servings of fruits and vegetables daily while limiting red meat. Such habits are thought to help reduce heart disease risks. — AP

On the Net:
American Cancer Society:

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Sleep well to keep well

Did you know that not getting enough sleep can make you age faster? And there’s a reason why they call it beauty sleep—getting enough zzz’s not only gives you the energy you need to get through your day, but is also vital for your skin to rejuvenate itself.

Try to limit your naps to a maximum of 30 minutes a day

Amazing things happen to your body while you sleep.

According to clinical psychologist Dr Lee Kuan Shin, B.A. Psych. (Syr. NY), M.A. Clin. Psych. (UKM), sleep functions as a ‘time-out’ for your body after being active throughout the day.

But while your body takes a break, some of its other functions kick in to rebuild and recharge itself, which explains why your skin looks tired and dull when you’re sleep deprived. When this happens, it’s less able to withstand harsh environmental irritants and stress, leaving it more vulnerable to further damage.

Stress is the number one cause of sleeplessness. When you’re constantly worried or feeling under pressure, your body continues to work overtime, leaving it drained with little time to rest.

Physical. Pains, allergies and hormonal shifts can also contribute to sleepless nights.

The environment. Incessant noise, bright lights, or extreme temperatures can interfere with your ability to sleep soundly.

Lifestyle choices. Cigarette smoking, excessive alcohol and caffeine consumption, and overeating can get in the way of deep sleep and even trigger insomnia.

A kink in your routine. Your sleep cycle can be affected by a change in your sleep pattern when you work shifts, travel, or work overtime.


  • Establish a consistent sleep routine. Sleep and wake up at the same time every day, no matter how poorly you sleep. This will help your body establish a sleep cycle. We recommend enlisting the help of an alarm to do this.

  • Give up the tossing and turning in bed in favour of light and relaxing activities. However, try to give the suspense thrillers, television and computer games a miss.

  • Relax. Unwind your mind by taking a warm bath, drinking a glass of warm milk or listening to soothing music, and your body is likely to follow suit.

  • Avoid stimulants such as heavy meals, strenuous exercise, caffeinated drinks, alcohol, smoking and engaging in anxiety-provoking activities before bedtime.

  • Avoid napping during the day. If you must, try to limit your naps to a maximum of 30 minutes a day

Most sleep-better tips revolve around physical adjustments, but how we feel and think also has a lot to do with how well we sleep.

“Sleeplessness indicates an underlying issue, be it a physical, psychological or a lifestyle one,” explains Dr Lee.

“Sleeplessness is a sign that you need to pay attention to these factors. It is also a natural reaction when you are anticipating a highly-charged event the following day because your body thinks it’s preparing for the next day’s ‘battle’.

Try practicing deep breathing exercises and relaxation techniques to loosen up the tension before going to bed.”

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Is the car trade a sacred cow?

Amid the grim automotive market, a radical suggestion has cropped up — don’t prop up the market. Instead, let it naturally slide to stem the more than 10-year annual trend of rising car sales.

Many will dismiss the idea, stressing the dire consequences if the entire industry were left to fail. But its proponents argue that the industry, particularly from the sales aspect, has not been adequately supervised. Hence, the rise of what is termed as rampant car growth (RCG).

They said uncontrolled sales over the years have caused our cities and towns to choke and clog. There are simply too many cars on the roads, they said.

Building new roads is not the answer, neither is imposing taxes nor increasing toll charges and car prices.

The proposed RM5,000 incentive to swap older cars for the new ones will only cause more Malaysians to buy more cars, which may revive an ailing market but will worsen the traffic problem in the cities.

“Why precisely should we get the car sector moving again? Why is the car sector so important that we need to prop it up?

“Is it because of jobs or does it affect the whole nation in such ways that if it plunges, the whole nation suffers?

What is meant by ‘suffering’ any way?” an observer wrote to Business Times.

“Why can’t we be more creative and say ‘we really don’t need so many cars on the roads’.

“Let’s look at ways we can integrate those in the industry who have lost jobs into other industries.

“We can finally begin to address the issue of RCG.”

The observer said if many automotive workers were to lose their jobs, they may be deployed into industries that help make towns and cities a better place to live.

These could include factories making trains and buses or anything that deals with public transportation, the house-building industry or the oil-palm industry, among others.

Industry CEOs and senior executives, the observer said, should not be told and asked to lead the charge to address the RCG issue. Instead, the politicians are the real agents of change.

The politicians, he said, need to come up with aggressive “sour medicine” strategies to deal with the problem.

The observer suggested that new car sales be capped at a certain volume annually or the second hand car market made more attractive, in addition to offering perks or incentives to limit new car growth and for electric and hybrid vehicles.

There can also be timelines with penalties to achieve zero
emission. The observer knows that he is overtly idealistic in hoping for such change, but stressed that if there is hope, we can do better things.

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Director gets 15 years for manslaughter

A director of a filming and advertising company was sentenced to 15 years' jail for manslaughter.
High Court judge Lim Yee Lan ordered S. Kanagaratnam, 44, to serve his sentence from the date of his arrest.

On Feb 13, the father of three had pleaded guilty to an amended charge of culpable homicide against his wife, P.Vimalathevi between 11pm on Feb 15, 2003 and 4am the next day at their home in Kepong.

He had used a whiskey bottle to hit his wife.

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Show proof, Khairy dares Karpal

Opposition veteran politician Karpal Singh has been challenged to furnish proof within 24 hours that Umno Youth was responsible in sending two bullets to his house.

Umno Youth deputy chief Khairy Jamaluddin said if the Bukit Gelugor MP failed to do so, then it would just show Karpal is a liar.

"We will not ask him to apologise for his wild and crazy allegation.

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BABY ABUSE: Govt should set up day-care centres

I REFER to the report "Baby girl raped and sodomised" (NST, Feb 23).

This is not the first time that babies have been sexually abused by persons under whose care these infants had been placed.

In the good old days, mothers could depend on their husband's income alone to meet family expenses and be at home to take care of their children.

Nowadays, this option is available only to wives of high-income husbands (or wives who can manage household expenses with their husband's earnings alone).

Depending on maids to look after babies without constant adult supervision is a risky and dangerous proposition, unless you have the good fortune to be blessed with thoroughly trustworthy, capable and reliable maids.
Not all business establishments are able to set up crèches for the children of their women employees.

It is unreasonable to expect the proprietor of a small private sector establishment, say, a food stall, to set up a crèche for the babies of mothers working at his stall.

The onus is on the government to set up affordable (subsidised) crèches for low-income working mothers in areas that are easily accessible to them.

Government-subsidised crèches with all female staff should be set up for working mothers who earn less than RM1,500 a month.

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