Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Sarah who?

"Do you know what they say the difference is between a hockey mum and a pit bull? Lipstick!"
- Sarah Palin, Republican VP candidate -

However, after watching her very embarrassing/bimbotic/incoherent interview with Katie Couric, the answer to Palin's above question would be more like this:

"Do you know what they say the difference is between a hockey mum and a pit bull? The pit bull has a brain!"

And here we are just 35 or so days away from finding out if America will be electing her to be the highly possible next new President of the US of A...should John McCain die in office. This is a woman who gives answers during interviews as the below:

Couric (interviewer): "If it (the $700 billion financial bailout) doesn't pass, what are the alternatives?"
Palin (Miss South Carolina): "The....the alt.....uh.....as I say, inaction is not an option....we have got to shore up our economy...this is crisis moment for America."

Anyway, I just found these spoofs online that are quite funny. Go check them out ;o).

Interview with Couric

And this just takes the cake. She can't even answer the specific question specifically! Come on, if you read a "vast variety", surely you can name just one? Times? Economist? Newsweek? Harry Potter? Is she listening at all? Can she understand English? And take note of Couric's expression at 00:39 - it's *priceless* (like she's thinking "What did I do to deserve this assignment?").

Monday, 29 September 2008

RepubliCAIN or DemOBAMAcrat?

I don't normally follow much on what goes on during the Presidential election in the US, but somehow the progress of this year's elections interests me quite a bit. Probably because there is FINALLY a candiate who seems interesting and fit to be the next US President, and that would be without a doubt:

John McBushCain!!!

Yeah, right. Seriously, if he becomes the next US President with his joke-of-the-year Sarah Palin as his running mate, then there is something really wrong with America. NO MORE REPUBLICAIN REPUBLICAN RULE PLEASE! George Bush's 2nd term as President was already 1 term too many - we don't need another 4 years of Republican rule.

Let's go back to the good ol' days of Bill Clinton (minus the scandal). Let's have a CHANGE, a FRESH mind, a NEW PERSPECTIVE! Yes, I know that Obama has age and his lack of experience against him, BUT HE HAS THE BRAINS! HE HAS THE RIGHT ISSUES PRIORITISED! And he has the personality! And he is at least having the support of an experienced Joe Biden as his 2nd hand man to make up for his own lack of experience.

So what if McCain has had more experience? It doesn't mean he's better. He could just be having more experience in making wrong decisions. If "experience" is so important, then why is his running mate the inexperienced, scandalous SARAH PALIN? So what if he is a war "hero"? That doesn't mean he'll make a good leader. In fact, it could bring more questions to his state of mind because all who had been through war do suffer the effects of it in their mind.

Anyway, I don't want to make this a very political post, but after watching the Presidential debate, I am more convinced that Obama's the man I want to be the next President of the United States, and I really do hope that Americans will not make this election superficially based on RACE or SEX.

I am pretty sure that if the rest of the world could take part in this election, Obama would have already won by a HUGE margin never seen before. Somehow though, for a country who had elected Bush twice, I fear that McPain's going to win. I really hope I'm proven wrong.


Thursday, 25 September 2008

The end is a new beginning

Oops...I almost forgot that I have a blog ;o). Well, this week has been pretty eventful in a bittersweet way, so I haven't been able to make a new post until now.

Anyway, NEWSFLASH - my company is 99% certain of closing down our Copenhagen office by the end of 2008. This is not an "April's Fool's Joke"; it's for real this time (which reminds me that I should ALWAYS be careful about what I say because they seem to come true).

What does this mean? It means that our office will cease to exist, so all 10 of us who are currently employed in the office will be laid off. Well, almost. That's the bitter part.

Now the sweet part: 3 positions will remain, and 1 of them is the position that I'm in right now; a position I've been having for many years. That means technically, I'll still have a job after this year. I'll have to apply for it though (after receiving my termination notice) as it'll be under a new contract, but it's pretty much a given that I'll get it...if I want it.

And that's where I have to decide. Do I want it? You see, there are many factors to consider as these 3 positions will very likely be based on a "work from home" contract. Working from home is great because of the flexibility, but there are of course cons too, like I might go TOTALLY INSANE if I have only me, myself and I as colleagues 5 days a week for a whole year! Of course, I could as well just work on my tan at the beach in the summer and have people around me... . For crying out loud, I could even be at a beach in SPAIN if I wanted to! Or in my apartment in Sunny Beach, Bulgaria... . Provided I have online access, of course.

But yeah, I also need to think about the compensation. By law, I'll have SIX months of full pay if I'm laid off, and the company will give an extra month plus the year's bonus on top if we fulfil certain conditions, so that means SEVEN months++ for me. You gotta admit that that's a LOT. Especially if I can manage to get another job such that I can enjoy double pay... .

I can definitely use this opportunity to find something else, because sometimes a kick in the @$$ like this is what is needed to search for something new. I mean, I've been working in this same company for almost 11 years now. ELEVEN! That's more than a DECADE! I started when I was 19, stayed throughout my 20's, and am now in my 30's! It's therefore GOOD that I'm getting a good kick now because before I know it, I'll be close to retirement there!

Anyway, my near future's going to be exciting. I'm looking at this from a positive perspective, so if you're a friend reading my blog, please don't worry about me because I at least still have the luxury of a choice here: to stay, or to go, so I'm not in such a bad situation.

Do you want to know what I believe regarding why I'm the only "lucky one" in the office out of 10 (including my office manager) who knows for sure that she can stay if she wants to? It's not so much "luck" really. Nor has it got anything to do with my work performance. You'll have to hear the story of how I got my job in the first place, and I'm not going to tell the full story in this post because it's quite a long one, but I can put it in a short summary:

I had prayed for a job 11 years ago (desparately. You have no idea how desparate until you hear the history of my job applications then). God answered within 2-3 days. Therefore, since I strongly believe that this job was given to me by God from the very beginning, I also strongly believe that He honours His gift by keeping it for me till the very end. What God gives, He never takes away, and this is a big proof of it for me in my life.

You can say it's just a coincidence if you want to - that's your prerogative. For me though, I'm believing it was God from the beginning, and very clearly God at the end. I'll give credit where credit is due. If this plan goes ahead, our office will close on 24 December. That's the day Danes celebrate Christmas, otherwise known as the "celebration of the birth of Christ" (in case you've forgotten). Is it me, or does God really have a sense of humour? Well, it's pretty symbolic for me anyway - like He's just putting His signature everywhere on this part of my life.

Anyway, a toast to a new beginning to come!!! Oh, and btw - if any of you hear of a job opening somewhere, please do think about me :o). I'm open to anything except prostitution... ;o). Well, it should be a job in Denmark too, at least. Preferably in the tourism industry, but I'm willing to venture out of it if the job description is good :o).

And yes, I will have another conversation with God about my new situation, so if you're sarcastically thinking "Why don't you just pray and wait for another gift from God?", I can assure you that I will :o). Except of course, that it's not just about praying and doing nothing, but rather, being active in the search, and praying that things will wonderfully fall into place with His help.

Thursday, 18 September 2008

Video from the German Mahjong Open

I don't really like being on videos, but since there's not much of me in this one, it'll be allowed on my blog ;o).

5:23 - 5:32 and 6:32 - 6:45 are showing my hand (as in, my mahjong hand, not my hand hand...even though that is also true).

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

German Mahjong Open 2008 in Hamburg

I was in Hamburg last weekend for the German Mahjong Open 2008. It was a real tournament, much like poker tournament, just with mahjong instead of poker. There was no gambling involved though, so you can't get rich (or poor) from this. Everything is counted in points, so the only thing you "fight" for is your honour.

I had never been to Hamburg before, unless you count connecting trains at the central station to continue further to other parts of Germany. However, I can't say that I saw much of Hamburg during this trip since most of my time there was spent either in the Museum of Ethnology playing hours of mahjong for the 2 days I was there, or home at my friend's apartment sleeping for the 2 nights I was there.

The other places in Hamburg we had spent time at were Chinese restaurants and the underground (U-bahn). So much for checking out the city.

Anyway, part of the reason why I went to Hamburg was also to visit my friend, Christophe, who had moved there. He used to be a former colleague, but we still keep in touch even after he left, so it was wonderful to see him again, even if for just a short time.

As for the mahjong tournment itself, I had a lot of fun experiencing it indeed. We were 2 teams from Denmark - the Flower Power girl's team, and the Danish Red Dragons boy's team. I went there with the goal of not being in the last position out of 32 participants, and I'm glad to say that my goal was achieved; I was in 30th place ;o).

I'm not that lucky in mahjong yet as I'm still learning, but I am proud to say that out of the 5 rounds in the tournament, I was actually the winner at my table in round 3. Not only that, I was also playing against the #1 and #2 ranked players at that point in time during that round, so by being the winner at that table, it meant also that I had beaten the top 2 ranked players!!! Woohoo!!! That was the best and LUCKIEST round I've EVER had since starting to play mahjong 3 months ago.

I have to confess though, that I was not so popular after my very last game of the tournament. It was quite an interesting round, because I was playing against the #3 and #4 ranked players at that time, and though I welcomed the pressure after a successful round against the previous #1 and #2 before, that round didn't go too well for me. It started well 'cos I won a hand at the start, but then I made some stupid mistakes, the worst one being that I didn't call "HU!" when I self-drew a winning tile because I wasn't sure if I met the minimum 8 points needed to call for a win. So I threw out a tile instead to continue the game, and the realised that I shouldn't have thrown out that particular tile (5 bamboo) as it was better than another tile (7 bamboo) that I opted to keep!

Anyway, in our last hand, the game was almost going to end as a "dead hand" since nobody called a win yet and there was just 1 tile left on the wall. I was the "lucky" one to pick that last tile, and it was a green dragon tile. It wasn't a winning tile for me, so I could either discard it, or find a safer tile from my hand to discard.

I wasn't thinking about risks. I thought instead "Well, chances of anyone winning on the last tile is very slim, so nobody's going to need this green dragon anyway," so I threw it out.

"HU!" cried Morten (#4) and Joe (#3) together when they saw the last green dragon tile!!! They were BOTH needing that tile to win! But Joe was after me, and Morten was after Joe, so the tile belonged to Joe, and I had lots of points deducted because the winning tile came from me.

Before the appearance of that green dragon, Morten actually had more points than Joe, so he could be in top 3, but because Joe now won that hand and there was not enough time to play another, it meant that Joe overtook Morten by...get this...ONE point!

So yeah, Morten...who was part of the Danish Red Dragons team (in other words, one of our guys), ended up in 5th place...all because I unnecessarily threw out that 1 deciding tile. Now he never wants to play with me again :o(. I'm sorry, Morten!!! Please forgive me ;o)! Thing is though, if Joe didn't need that tile to win, then Morten would have gotten it, get lots of points, and possibly become either 1st place or 2nd place in the tournament! So if his luck was better, I could have played a big part in helping him get that spot... .

Anyway...here are some pics from the event.

Constructively spending the time away on a 4½hr long train ride from Copenhagen to Hamburg.

Museum of Ethnology

Flower Power girls!

Check out his heavy headgear!

Preparing for Round#1

My 1st round was at Table A.

Everyone getting into position.

And so begins the tournament!

Concentrating hard.

Here's happy Morten...while he was still in 4th position and enjoying it while it lasted for the next 2hrs until the nasty Green Dragon flew out of my hands and took it all away from the defenseless Kung Fu Panda... .

Flower Power girls again! 7th position out of 8 in total combined mahjong table points, but definitely 1st position in total combined beauty points ;o).

Danish Red Dragons. Well, I see 2 Red Dragons, 1 Flower Power wannabe, and 1 sad panda... .

The whole "Danish" team who made up 1/4 of the total participants.

The Lamborghini I drove around in while in Hamburg. I would have driven it all the way back to Copenhagen, but didn't want to seem anti-social so I joined the rest in the train instead.

Wednesday, 10 September 2008

My 3 daily "S'es" in reverse

I've been meaning to blog about this for some time but have been pushing it, yet every time it happens, I keep telling myself "It'll be blogged about today!"

So yes, today's the day!

Do you know how annoying it is when, after a nice refreshing shower, especially in the morning, and you're feeling clean and ready to take on the world, when within minutes of stepping out, the guys in your rectum go:

"BREACH ALERT! BREACH ALERT! People, listen up! Our outer walls have been breached - it seems like our dear Anus here has been scrubbed cleaned...AGAIN!"

"Oh no!!!" chorus every filthy one. "Why does this keep happening?!? When will it STOP?!"

"We'll discuss the details of a real Republican plan later, but right now, we've just got to unload the bio-chemical S.H.I.T. of the day and see what happens."

So starts the rumble of an internal earthquake measured to an equivalent of between 4-8 on the Richter Scale, and then the power struggle between Anus and The Mind to see who will give in. More often than not, Anus wins, so the download goes ahead as launched...and Anus gets soiled despite being clean just minutes ago. And this usually means that I end up in the shower a 2nd freakin' time! Good that the Rectum Department tends to be out of ammo by then.

I really hate it when literal shit happens like that after being scrubbed clean. I mean, if it happens after a few hours of my shower, then fine. But out of every 10 times I shower, 8 times I end up sitting over the "Black White Hole" within just 10 mins of pure santizied bliss. What is wrong here?!?!

And it's not like I can help it much because:

1. I'm usually fine before I step into the shower (so why waste a good precious 10 mins sitting over the "White Hole" hoping for a download before I get wet).

2. It's not just in the weekday mornings that the launches happen after a shower. It can also be during a weekend afternoon or weekend evening, so it's not that there's a fixed morning timetable that I can prepare precisely for.

Or what? Am I really doing it all wrong? Is there some kind of Special High Intensity Training (S.H.I.T) that all humans go through at age 3 to teach about following the correct sequence of events: Shit-Shave-Shower? I've heard Martin saying this phrase several times before as if he had graduated with top honours from this training. Is this true? Since I seem to be doing the exact opposite all the time (Shower-Shave-Shit)!

Oh well...I think I'll need to have a one-on-one with my body soon because enough is enough!

Saturday, 6 September 2008

George Michael - The Final One!

This post is quite overdue, but George Michael was performing his final tour concert in Copenhagen last Saturday (30 Aug), and I went to see him!!! Yes, I'm talking about the George Michael - the guy who gave us "Faith", "Freedom", "Careless Whisper"...and "Last Christmas".

Btw, did you realise that he made a grammatical error in his "Careless Whisper" song? The part where he sings "Guilty feet have got no rhythm". Notice? It should be "Guilty feet has got no rhythm". Oh well, he's British so English is of course not his 1st language... .

Anyway, it was a GREAT concert! One of the best concerts I've ever been too! A couple of people from my group were slightly disappointed that he didn't sing "Last Christmas" though. Nevermind that he was performing in August, and Christmas isn't until...well, December.

Speaking of "Last Christmas", George said that he is going to release a new Christmas single this year. Not sure how that's going to compete against "Last Christmas", but we'll find out soon enough. I mean, do you remember any Christmases in your life when you didn't hear "Last Christmas"? I'm pretty sure that even if you are on the moon, you'll be hearing "Last Christmas" in your space shuttle.

He won't be retiring yet though, so no worries to George's fans. He's just not going to do a world tour again (or so he says), but he'll still write songs and perform. I mean, he's only 45 years old, so why would he stop "working"?

Oh well, just in case he doesn't make a comeback tour in the future, I'm glad to have heard the man live at last. My expensive ticket was very much worth it :o).

Careless Whisper - he really does say "feet have".