Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Halloween or Bust!!

Happy Halloweenie to everyone!! As for me, I am flying off in a couple of hours to SoCal. Presenting at a conference in Orange County. The hotel's like a couple of blocks from Disneyland. Anyways, not doing much of the touristy stuff this time round. Wish you were going to with me Lisa! Gonna' meet up with Pete's brother, Matt and his girlfriend Alicia. Heading up to LA to see Laurence and Elizabeth who's at Loyola Marymount U.

I can't wait for a bit of warmer climate and to smell the ocean again!!Promise to post some pictures soon!!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Halloween Fun!

Halloween Party over at the boys' house...

P1020001 P1010995
So the story goes like this, a handsome guy was taking a break from all his programming work. So, off to a remote island he went. As he was strolling along the beach, he stumbled upon a lamp... trying to clear off sand from the lamp, poof!! A cloud of smoke formed and a lovely lady appeared. It was the love of his life... genie-ME!! And they lived happily ever after among great friends!! Corny, but cute, right?

P1020003 P1020043 P1020005 P1020041
P1020080 P1020062 P1020031
P1020022 P1020071
P1020079 P1020078
Boys will always be boys!!!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Holiday season in America...

It is Tuesday, October 24th - Buffalo may have just survived the first snowstorm, but.. Daylights Savings does not end for another 5 days, Halloween is still one week away, Thanksgiving's a month away and Christmas... is still 2 months away!!

I saw my very first Christmas jingle/commercial/avertisement on TV today.This year, Lowe's beat Macy's & JCPennney's to it. You can find all your Christmas needs at Lowe's!! So the commercial portrays.

Anyways, what an early awakening it is for some of us that the holiday season is upon us and there's no shame in starting your shopping early!!

On another note, why is it that Halloween always gets semi-shadowed by Christmas?! I went out to the store looking at Halloween decorations and costumes and they are shoved to a little corner behind all the Christmas decorations!! Oh yeah... X'mas decorations and items have been on the shelves of all the stores begining late September. Imagine that!!!

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Rachel & John's Day of the Wed

Congratulations to Rachel & John on their wedding!
October 21st, 2006
International Institute of Buffalo
...Day of the Wed...

P1010838 P1010887 P1010868 P1010944
P1010875 P1010860 P1010861 P1010876
group pix

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Birthday shoutout to Scotty-G!

Happy Birthday to you....
Happy Birthday to you....
Happy Birthday dear Scotty,
Happy Birthday to you!!!

Manny happy returns of the day to you and we miss you!!

lotsa love,
sher & pete

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Earthquake hits Hawaii

From recovering from a surprise lake-snow-effect snowstorm to all my friends in the Hawaiian islands - hope all is well and safe on your side.

L - I know that you're in LA, but glad to know that everyone back on Oahu is okay and especially your mom who's currently on the Big Island.

* * * * *
Earthquake of Magnitude 6.5 Hits Hawaii
Published: October 15, 2006

HONOLULU (AP) -- An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.5 struck Hawaii early Sunday morning, causing a landslide that blocked a major highway on Hawaii Island, the Pacific Tsunami Center said.

Power was out power across the state and there were unconfirmed reports of injuries, according to the State Civil Defense. Problems with communication prevented more definite reports. Gov. Linda Lingle said in a radio interview with KSSK from Hawaii Island that she had no report of any fatalities.

The U.S. Geological Survey reported a preliminary magnitude of 6.3, along with several aftershocks, including one measuring a magnitude of 5.8. No damage reports were immediately available.

The quake occurred at 7:07 a.m. local time, 10 miles north-northwest of Kailua Kona, a town on the west coast of the Big Island, said Don Blakeman, a geophysicist at the National Earthquake Information Center, part of the U.S. Geological Survey.Blakeman said there was no risk of a Pacific-wide tsunami, but a possibility of significant wave activity in Hawaii.

The quake occurred about 155 miles to the southeast of Honolulu, the state capital, in Oahu. On Hawaii Island, also known as the Big Island, there was some damage in Kailua-Kona and landslide along a major highway, said Gerard Fryer, a geophysicist at the Pacific Tsunami Center.

Betsy Garties, who lives in North Kohala, on the northern tip of Hawaii Island said she was lying in bed with one of her two young children when the quake struck.

"First I heard a rumbling. Then the house started to shake. Then broken glass," Garties said. She first stood under a door frame as safety experts advise, then found that too wobbly for comfort and ran into the yard.

"It was strong enough that it was wobbling, so you almost lost your balance running out into the yard," Garties said. "The house was visibly rocking."

Power at least partially knocked out on every island, said Civil Defense spokesman Lani Goldman. On Oahu, 95 percent of customers were without power, he said. Authorities said some of the power outages may have been due to heavy rainfall.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

First snowfall & snowstorm in WNY

I left work on Thursday at 5.10pm, it took me 10 mins to clear snow off my car and 45 minutes to get home!! (It usually only takes me like 5 mins or 10 mins if I am in off work/home traffic) As i was about to pass the Sheridan-Hopkins-Evans intersection trafic lights... popped and fizzled the traffic lights went and I just went by under it. Got home... NO POWER!! This was at around 6pm.

Michele made it home about a quarter after 6pm - her journey home took an hour and a half. Brought out my skiing pants and all other winter clothes so that Michele and I can trudge through the snow to Wegmans... which was opened (they had a backup generator). This was about 7.30pm. Inside Wegmans, half lit... people were clearing out all the refrigerated items (meats, cheese, etc) to their generator operated freezer since they themselves have no idea when the power will be up and running again. If Wegmans' cleared part of their shelves and declared they were closing for that Thursday evening... the situation MUST be bad.

Woke up Friday morning, turned out the radio... looked outside... SNOW DAY on a Friday the 13th and in October nonetheless. Imagine that!! I have snow up to my knees... spent 3 hours yesterday morning (Friday) digging a pathway and the car out (in case we need it for an emergency). Tree limbs and tress fell down bringing out a lot of power lines. There was a driving ban, no electricity from Thursday at 6pm up to now, Saturday 11.25am. Phone lines are still pretty bad but improving.

Tips for surviving: Michele and I finished a bottle of champagne and went to bed under my goose down comforter (our life saver!!). We survived on bread, soda and alcoholic beverages... and a battery operated radio to hear updates and news from the outside world. Other than that.... thank goodness there's light and heat again in our life!!!

As we woke up this morning... it was still very cold!! It was low 30s... but it is now at low 40s. My back is aching from all the shovelling yesterday. Here are some pictures I took from the October Winter Blast!!


Friday the 13th morning

DSCN6391 DSCN6405
Before and after shot of an exit/entrace route is dug out...

DSCN6407 DSCN6404
Hard at work...

DSCN6408 DSCN6415 DSCN6416 DSCN6417
DSCN6420 DSCN6426 DSCN6427 DSCN6430

Monday, October 09, 2006

Still about the Language police

Still about the Language police
Sunday, October 08, 2006
Taken from http://jinkeanlim.blogspot.com

* * *
Perhaps DBP already have the proper words for the IT terms below, if not how can the businessmen use standard national language on their signboards? Not only this, those restaurants with English name, I think DBP should works on it to provide them a standard national language terms, for example: McDonald, Pizza Hut, Domino Pizza, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Burger King, Sushi King etc.

hardware = barangkeras
software = baranglembut
joystick = batang gembira
plug and play = cucuk dan main
port = lubang
server = pelayan
client = pelanggan

Someone claimed that these are registered (international) TRADE mark; these will not violate the national language grammar. Well, you know to say these are TRADE mark, and then don’t you know what is the impact if DBP enforce on local small modal businessmen? Maybe businessmen will say their signboards are trade mark, then, what will the enforcement officers do now? Does it another way to offer jobless graduates job?

Related articles: Language police UPDATED

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Too much free time in their hands...

The Malaysian government appears to have a lot of free time and money on their hands. Not only are they wasting precious time that could have been spent improving the economy or social welfare of the nation, they (governing bodies) are now busy in implementing a monetary fine on those who mix (creolize) Malay and English in what they claim as an effort to promote and retain the national language - Malay.

This is what I call baloney!!!

The reason given for this move is to ensure "the national language was not sidelined in any way". In that case, I present to you... who exactly are the ones who are placing Malay at a sideline?

Malaysia is a nation comprised of three main majority races - the Malay (50.4%), Chinese (23.7%), Indigenous (11%), Indian (7.1%), and Others (7.8%) (CIA Factbook - 2004 est.) If the majority of the country is represeted by the majority population whose mother tongue and native language is Malay, then wouldn't the easy answer to it would be to punish all ethnic Malays of their use of "Manglish". I am not pointing fingers here... but whoever it is to be blamed or supposedly hold accountable for should be the government itself for coming up with such stupid ways of "preserving the national language".

They call it Manglish... I call it Malay-pidgin... a more pleasant sounding phenomenon one can easily identify in a number of multiracial and multilingual countries in the world. This pidginization of more than one language (dialect) is also known as language contact. Look at the case of Hawaii where Hawaiian pidgin is an everyday experience, or Spanglish spoken by many Hispanics and Latinas throughout Europe, Caribbean islands, North, Central and South America.

In the Malay language family, there exist a number of subgroups of dialect or Malay-based creole languages. There is the Betawian, Baba, Manado, Bacanese, Ambonese, Kelantan-Kupang dialect of Malay, etc. If fines were to be imposed on the use of Malay and English, I say a fine should be imposed on the use of Malay itself. The Malay language developed with many borrowings from Arabic, Persian and Hindi vocabularies. Isn't that itself a form of mixing of two (and more) languages?

In school, we all learnt the standard academic version of Malay which we all know does not work in everyday life. Who in their right mind speak in the same standard Malay to the "Karipap" lady in their school canteen or in standard Malay to a dear Malay friend's parents? In fact, all we hear around us in the streets, shopping center, stores, outside class session and even politicians is an unformal non-academic version of Malay.

There are better ways as well as more productive and positive methods to preserve the national language than to impose fines. Suddenly, it appears that Malaysia wants to emulate its "FINE-NEIGHBOUR" - Singapore. Fine away on anything and everything. On top of that, in addition to getting a Hand-Holding Spotter-officer, Kissing-Monitor, Malaysia now wants to add a Manglish-patroller to the list!!?!

Malaysia to levy fines for poor speech

Malaysia to levy fines for poor speech
Thu Oct 5, 7:52 AM ET, The Star Newspaper

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia - Malaysia will levy fines on those incorrectly using the national language, and will set up a specialized division to weed out offenders who mix Malay with English, news reports said Thursday.

Culture, Arts and Heritage Minister Rais Yatim said fines of up to 1,000 ringgit ($271) can be imposed on displays with any wrong or mutated form of Malay, the Star newspaper reported.

The move was to ensure "the national language was not sidelined in any way," Rais said, according to The Star. Fines will be imposed after a first warning, the national news agency Bernama quoted Rais as saying.

Most Malaysians speak Malay, also known as Bahasa Malaysia, while English is widely spoken but a mutated form, known as "Manglish" — a mishmash of English, Malay and other local dialects is commonly used in the Southeast Asian nation.

The government will attempt to swap commonly used English language words with Malay substitutes, The Star said. "It has to be admitted that a mixture of Bahasa Malaysia and English sometimes cannot be helped, but we hope these measures can arrest the decline," Rais said, according to The Star.

He said a national language unit will be set up in an attempt to reduce the English-Malay mix, especially at official functions. An official at Rais' ministry, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed his comments as reported.

Critics have said Malaysia's decision to sideline English in favor of Malay is hurting its global competitiveness level and a downward spiral in English language standards among students.