Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Bypass SurfControl To Access G-Mail

After days on trying to access my Gmail account at my office, I finally made it.

I installed a script called G-mail Lite on my site and now I can happily access my account. The link is http://www.bennyong.com/gm/ - UPDATE: 06 January 2007 dead link, click here to read this new post for an update!

This will be a relief to everyone else who’s current access is blocked by surfcontrol. Share this link with your mates before it gets indexed and blocked by Surfcontrol.

Happy checking your mail!

Benny Ong XXX

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Things Will Only Get Better

Today is Tuesday, a lot of things have been happening to me throughout the week. Most of them are bad.

Although I tend to forget about them and concentrate about the good things in life, I would be lying if I say that those events have not affected my behavior lately.

I am feeling down for a couple of days now and unfortunately I can’t find the root cause. I think what I am going through is somewhat like a depression caused by hormonal imbalance. I want to blame puberty and menopause but I am far over one and nowhere near the other.

Anyone with a good remedy to cure such mood swings? Please share your tips.

Well, wait up till my next post and I know things will get better. ; )

Benny Ong XXX

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Graduation at UIA

After sending some of my friends to the airport, I have yet another responsibility to complete. I had earlier promise my friend Hafizi that I will be attending his graduation.

I first drove to USJ to get JC before she lead the way there. We pass Batu Caves which was one of the major locations that I have wanted to visit.

Picture Of Me With Hafizi

UIA which stands for University Islam Antarabangsa is huge and I was please to see the faces of people graduating and proud parents. I was of course more than happy for my dear friend Hafizi.

That is all for today and till next time.... take care...

Benny Ong XXX

Friday, August 25, 2006

Steamboat & Chicken Wings

Today, we brave through the heavy rain to get to Bandar Sunway for Steamboat. Although the initial reason to have it was to celebrate the birthday of the August babies in our company, only one showed up. Shame on the rest who did not.

Me and My Buddies Having Steamboat

The place was a corner lot shop offering seafood steamboat buffet at about Rm20.00 per head which was a steal. JC knows the boss and manage to get us a table although we booked very late.

Besides being a good bargain, the place was famous for its chicken wings which everyone will grab as if they were starving once it is place on the buffet spread. Since, we were seated fairly close to where the wings were served in the buffet line, I can't help it but be amuse everytime people rush for the wings.

Chicken Wings

We of course were not left out of the fun when most of us attempt to squeeze ourselve to get our equal share of the wings or sometimes even more. A stunt pulled by JC which was practically scooping the wings of the tray with her plate left everyone stunt. We could not stop laughing as others were left starring at her including the waiter.

It was definately a fun night which I ended by bringing Seong Chun and Jin Siang back to the office at midnight and we stayed till close to 2 in the morning.

That's all for the moment and take care.

Benny Ong XXX

Thursday, August 24, 2006

My First Talent Casting

I am excited about today and do not know what to expect after a call from my friend I know as Horlicks surprise me. She works freelance for a production house and told me to attend a casting. She said they wanted to bank on my ability to speak Hokkien.

I went to the talent studio in Bandar Utama called Indepent Casting if I remembered correctly and there I was given a story board by a pretty chick called Meredith who handles the casting. It was an ad for a famous digital camera company.

Without any experience at all, they first took down my details and soon recorded my profile. I was told to do some impromptu acting which I believe was reasonable for someone who has not attended any classes.

Soon, it was the real deal. I had to act out according to the story board but I was told that I am not restricted by the script. When she yelled start, I let loose and started cursing in Hokkien uttering words that I have never used in a conversation before. The inspiration came from the Singaporean movie I Not Stupid and some other from the same team.

Later that evening, I was send a text message by Horlick stating that I have been one of the three short listed for the filming to be done in 2nd September. I can’t help it but feel excited. I will update you on the outcome as soon as I get any news.

Benny Ong XXX

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

The MCSE Journey Continues

Apologies if I have not posted in a while. I have just been carried away with work and there is no longer any wireless connection at my apartment that I can use from my balcony.

Well, today I continued my hanging MCSE class from Penang. I manage to transfer over my outstanding modules down to the Informatics in KL which is located in Megan Avenue 1. Although it was done as smoothly as I would like it to, everything is in an acceptable level now. Being a Malaysian somehow, I believe we tend to have a higher tolerance band.

I left work at 5.00 to get there by LRT. When I reached Ampang Park station, it was raining cats and dogs. I have no choice but to get an umbrella from Guardian. At least, now, I have a small umbrella that will be handy.

The class was handled by a lecturer from India which was very good at teaching. When I entered the class, I was already 6 hours behind as it began last week. Fortunately, only one student showed up and he agreed that the lecturer go through with me what have been covered so that I can catch up with the class.

So, I am glad that I did not go home because of the heavy rain. Now I am even motivated for my next class which is tomorrow.

Benny Ong XXX

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Variations of Zidane's Headbutt on Materazzi

It has been a while since I posted anything from my e-mail, so here is one that got me laughing. Look at the variations of the legendary World Cup finals act. Unfortunate way to end an amazing career with. I do hope he will be remembered as an amazing and great athlete than for that incident.

With that said, let us see some creative variations. I'll be making this post as an archive and will add to it should some other be available.


Zidane Headbutt

Zidane Headbutt

Zidane Headbutt

Zidane Headbutt

Zidane Headbutt

Zidane Headbutt

Zidane Headbutt

Zidane Headbutt

Zidane Headbutt

Zidane Headbutt

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Hope it will make it easier for you to plan your holidays.

Benny Ong XXX

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Types Of Cats

Although I prefer dogs, there are a new way to categorize cats. Apparently domesticated ones tend to mimic their owners. Look at the proof below:
The House Cat

House Cat


The Hip Hop Cat

House Cat

The Metal Cats


House Cat

The Stevie Wonder Cat


House Cat

The Stoner Rock Cat


House Cat

The Techno Cat


House Cat

iCat

House Cat<

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Montein and Bar Flam's @ Bangsar

Attended another dinner event but this time with the big boys of the company. Yup, basically the Leadership team of my company flew in from various parts of the world (Brazil, Germany, UK) for a mid year review that is scheduled for tomorrow.

I believe they were in a bunch of meetings before arriving fashionably late at Montien for dinner which was served buffet style. That was not much time to mingle around as the balcony area was packed and time was running out.

There was once again free flow of beer which contributes to my ever growing belly. Who says that you stop growing after your teen years.

Some of the food on the spread were Tom Yam, Kerabu, Green Curry and a platter of fried stuff. Dessert was Sago and Tapioca with Caramel. Unfortunately, I did not take much pictures to share due to the crowd present.

Me & Gajana @ Montein
Gajana & Me @ Montein

We headed to Bar Flam’s at Bangsar for a drink before heading home.

Bar Flams
The Leadership team @ Bar Flams

Benny Ong XXX

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Pikom PC Fair II at KLCC

Had to rise early to have breakfast with my dad and my sis who is waiting for us in the lobby. The buffet breakfast was on the 5th floor when I was introduced to my Dad’s colleague, Mr. Ma. He is from Shanghai and has reasonable proficiency in English. He told us that he is trying to learn and is using every opportunity to speak as he did not get a chance to practice back in school.

The breakfast was decent and I soon realize how my appetite has decrease over the years. I would usually try to stuff myself at such opportunities but I somehow could not do so. It might be because I usually feel guilty afterwards if I feel that I over ate.

I further spend time with my Dad until noon before sending him off at KL Sentral to board KLIA Express. I was to head to KLCC afterwards but was shocked to look at the queue to get tickets on to the Putra LRT from KL Sentral. Luckily I had my Touch n Go which I had in mind to get rid off which allow me to jump the crowd.

Once in KLCC, I was waiting for my childhood friend of almost 16 years to accompany him at the PC Fair at KL Convention Center. He was planning to get a laptop.

We started our entry to the fair close to 2.00 p.m. and the place was huge and packed. Once again, I was wondering how they would be able to do an emergency evacuation. I sure hope they have something planned.

The fair was stretched among 5 halls with the first stretch on the 2nd floor. We were practically driven by the flow of people across the whole fair. I usually never like crowds but compromise this time because of the presence of the gadgets.

Although there were loads of bargains, I had to control myself from spending. I always buy on impulse and there were just too many deals to resist. My will power was strong this time around and I came back empty handed but with a list of items that I might buy next time around.

My friend settles for DELL after hours of research. It was the most value for money option after comparison with other major brands. We left at about 7.00 p.m.

I had dinner at Sri Petaling before heading home where I tried to catch up with my friend by showing him pictures that are in my computer.

That’s all for now. Till next time, take care.

Benny Ong

Friday, August 11, 2006

Leo's Birthday Celebration at Leo's

Today is the birthday of Song Yia, one of our colleagues. She is one of the five Leo’s I believe that we will be celebrating the birthdays this month.

The celebration started off early when we sang Happy Birthday in the lift to the embarrass victim.

Since, most of us were broke because of the non stop celebrations, I somewhat arranged for us to have dinner at a place called Leo’s in The Store Sri Petaling.

Song Yia's Place


The place has a wide range of fusion food and was at reasonable prices.

No birthday celebration will be complete without a cake which we later brought in.

I headed straight home afterwards and Wai Theng came and gave me a ride to KL Sentral. I was to go see my dad which is in town for business. I would not miss a chance to spend a night at Le Meridien.


Benny Ong XXX

Thursday, August 10, 2006

ITIL Exams

Today is the day to test what we have learned from the past two days of ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library) training. 14 of us were sent to Palace of the Golden Horses for a three day training on ITIL.

To those who do not know what ITIL is, I don't blame you. I have never heard of it until I joined the IT Business. It is basically a framework for IT Best practice.

Our three day training was in house and by Pink Elephant, apparently the leading ITIL training company. Our instructor for that course in Patrick Ryan from Sydney, Australia.

The exam is a 40 objective question. I am so unsure about how I perform in the exams but I will update the results on my blog once it is out. Wish me luck on that k!

Benny Ong XXX

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Dinner At Seven Ate Nine

After the first day of ITIL training, we rushed back to the office before proceeding to Seven Ate Nine near KLCC for a meeting cum dinner. The place was nice and we had drinks in the lounge area before heading upstairs for dinner.

We had this Argentinean wine which was the smoothest wine I ever had. The food selection was not much but the quality is splendid.

I strongly encourage you to be a bit adventurous when ordering. There are no massive surprises in store, so you have nothing to worry about. We had wedges, fresh oysters and spring roll for starters. Can’t exactly recall what I had for main course because all of us there were practically sharing but it has something to do with lamb.

Dinner At Seven Ate Nine

Feast your eyes on the pictures of some of the food we ordered below:


Food


Food

Food

Food

That’s all for now!

Benny Ong XXX

Monday, August 07, 2006

Nirvana Memorial Center

Attended a funeral at Nirvana Memorial Centre along the KL-Seremban Highway. The place was very neat and gets rid of the typical eerie feeling one usually have in such places. The lobby or reception area matched one of a 5 Star hotel.

I am here because my dear friend just lost his mother. He is coping very well and all my respect to the departed. It really hit me when I was there and felt the sadness.

Benny Ong XXX

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Bride & Prejudice

Woke up late today after last night’s heavy drinking session. I decided to accompany our awoken guest by playing the movie Bride & Prejudice (Thank You Angie! for heaps of Movies) while the others stay in bed. I’ve heard loads about this movie when I was in the UK and am always a fan of fusion. Bride & Prejudice was a very ambitious movie but unfortunately, I do not think that it went well with cinema goers.

Movie Poster

There were scenes that should have remain in Tamil movies and will never work in western movies. If you grown up watching tamil films on TV like me, you will be familiar with the love, dance, religious and musical scenes. To those who have never been enlighten by a Tamil film before, those mentioned four aspects will always be covered.

The thing that always attracted me to Tamil movies are the dance and music when crowds of strangers will suddenly be dancing and singing in harmony in odd places. There will also be the unforgettable love running and chasing scene in the parks and among the trees.

My opinion is that this all failed badly in Bride & Prejudice. However, credits should be given to all that have worked hard to make this movie and it seemed that they have fun filming it. It will also work as a benchmark for more cultural fusion films to be in the theatres and cinemas. If I am not wrong, this movie was directed by the UK based directed which also created the movie Bend It Like Beckham which discovered Keira Knightly.

We all got ready and left for lunch after the movie before dispersing and heading home respectively. My initial plan was to go look for shoes and a refrigerator but fell asleep till about 5 before I receive a text message to hear about my friends mother’s passing. I will be attending the funeral tomorrow after work.

I then headed off for a walk in the park at Taman Bukit Jalil which is just next to where I live. The park is very beautiful and is within walking distance. I promise to bring my camera next time around and share it with you bunch here.

Well, I am about to go out now for dinner. Till next time, take care….

Benny Ong XXX

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Internet Marketing Preview and Shopping Spree

Today I attended the free preview of the Internet Marketing Center at Hotel Armada in PJ. I was once again reunited with the same facilitator from a previous Internet Marketing preview I attended in Penang. He was once again, bragging about how good his life was because of the internet.

I would have wanted to stay longer because there were some key tips being shared but have to leave early because I was sharing the car with my sis. I drove back and picked up my sis to go to KLCC for shopping.

There were certainly some good bargains in Isetan and Padini was having their clearance sale in the Gallery inside Isetan on the first floor if I still remember correctly. I bought two shirts from there for a bargain. Just for info to some of the readers, did you know that you can get free 3 hours parking if you are an Isetan Club member and spend a minimum of RM100.

I further continued to shop by getting ownership of a pair of Key Ng’s Linen Trousers which I plan to wear to work. I never bothered to look at designer brands but the designs were irresistible and the prices was definitely a bargain. With all the buys, I have blown up my clothes budget for the month.

Now, the next item that I will be getting will be a pair of leather and sports shoes. Yup, I haven’t given up yet after missing out on the Hush Puppies sales at Hotel Armada last weekend.

I spend the night playing the card game of “Chor Tai Tee� with my sister’s friend. The game became more exciting with the presence of alcohol. We played and drank till late.

That’s all for now, till my next post, take care….

Benny Ong XXX

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Singapore Day 2

The call from JC in the morning woke me up. It took me about an hour to get ready before meeting the HP folks in Commerce Center opposite Somerset MRT station. We were treated to breakfast before we went to the upper floors to witness an industry Tier 4 Data Center.

Finally having a real look of the facilities made a real difference than just reading about it. We had to pass through at least 4 physical security obstructions before getting our feet into the raised platforms of the DC.

Some of you might know that I have been learning and dealing with the web hosting industry for several years and how exciting being in a DC was. Although all my knowledge was more based on web hosting DCs, they are all practically the same. It is just depending on what the servers were there for. A DC will be a location with controlled environment to house the servers.

Singapore National Day


As I made my first turn along the row I was walking in to the middle stretch, all I can see was endless rows of racks of servers which reminded me of a scene from The Matrix. The temperature of the room was cold and I can’t help to notice the cameras mounted on the ceiling. They are link into a control room for security purposes.

Unfortunately, as expected, I was not allowed to take any pictures. We continued the day with a discussion session before heading onto Swensen’s for lunch.

We went to Alexandra Road to enter HP’s Service Desk for a further briefing session on what they do there before onto their office. We even manage to squeeze in a visit to the Disaster Recovery center.

Waterfront Plaza


Our official purpose of the meeting ended just a quarter pass 4.00 pm and we were dropped off at a nearby shopping complex which was walking distance to our departure point.

Food On Board

The dinner served on the coach was a WOW factor. If you were to ask me how the overall service was, I would definitely give two thumbs up and recommend it to everyone.

We arrive at Menara Axis in PJ at about 11.30 pm on schedule. My sis came and pick me home.

Can’t wait to share my experience with my friends at work tomorrow. Until my next post. Take care.

Benny Ong XXX

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Singapore Day 1

Today we arrived at Singapore at about 1.30 pm at Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel. The Aeroline coach ride has been comfortable and now all we need to do is get to Classique Hotel that we’ve made reservations at in Jalan Besar. We took a cab there and freshen ourselves up before heading to Orchard Road for some shopping.

Taking the MRT from Farrer Park lead us there and we wasted no time looking for Gelato as it was JC’s craving for ages. All we know that it was located at Shaw House and before we knew it, we were enjoying Gelato. My favorite flavour has to be Chocolate Mint.

Near Clark Quay

As our shopping adventure continues, we saw loads of good deals and stores selling National Day themed clothing. Singapore’s 41st National Day was just around the corner. I bought two tops at U2.

Mos Burger
Me Reuniting with Mos Burger (Used To Exist in KL)

Our journey brought us to Takashimaya that was having a crazy toy sale. Most of you might know that I have a liking for model kits and figurines. The prices were slashed like mad but unfortunately, I can’t buy much as they were bulky.

Clark Quay

We practically spend about three hours at Orchard Road before heading to Clark Quay for our dinner appointment at Brewerkz. I was surprise to see how huge and busy Brewerkz were. I had Black Cod with Asparagus as a main course and the brownie as dessert. Clark Quay was scenic and apparently Ministry of Sound Singapore is just nearby as well.
Brewerkz

Since Brewerkz is a micro brewery, there were various blend of beer that they offered. I decided to go for the Sample set that will allow me to taste the six types in 60ml glass. I liked Golden Ale best but after finishing drinking everything, I can’t recall how each taste like. We even bought a six pack to go.

Mustafa Center

We headed back to Classique Hotel and started packing for the next day. As both of us could not sleep, we decided to go to Mustafa Center at 1.00 a.m which opens 24 hours and was just across the road. The place was packed with stuff and the layout was not the best or shopping friendly. I was wondering how they would be able to evacuate if there was an emergency. We left empty handed.

I ended the day when I fell asleep watching CSI in the hotel room.