Monday, December 31, 2007

Vasco Is Missing :(

I got a call from Tasha when I was in Ipoh. She said Vasco ran away. I was shocked. She was in the hall of our house when she heard Caesar barking. When she came out, she saw knew something was wrong. She started calling his name, but no answer. So, she took Caesar and they drove around the entire neighbourhood of Lestari Perdana and the neighbouring tamans of Lestari Perdana, but they did not find him.
Upon returning back from Ipoh at 7pm, she picked me up from Pudu and we went around looking for Vasco till about 12mn, but we still did not find him. We asked around, some of our neighbours said they saw him walking around 1/2 an hour ago, some saw him crossing the road, but when we go back to the same place, we don't see him. We have left our numbers around, we just hope and pray our dear Vasco comes home.
This is my first post on our loss. I will be printing some posters and putting them around in Seri Kembangan. To all those who live in Seri Kenbangan, please keep us informed if you see him anywhere.
Our numbers are 016-6877547 & 016-3536107.
Thank you very much.=

Friday, December 28, 2007

Say NO To Mars!

I was on the PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) site and I came across this shocking article. To all my fellow animals rights activists, please stop the purchase of Mars candybars.
Got a sweet tooth? Think twice before picking up a Mars candy bar! You should know that candymaker Mars, Inc.— creator of M&M's, Snickers, Twix, Dove, Three Musketeers, Starburst, Skittles, and other candies — funds deadly animal tests, even though there are more reliable human studies and not one of the tests is required by law.
Mars is currently funding a deadly experiment on rats to determine the effects of chocolate ingredients on their blood vessels. Experimenters force-feed the rats by shoving plastic tubes down their throats and then cut open the rats' legs to expose an artery, which is clamped shut to block blood flow. After the experiment, the animals are killed. Mars has also funded cruel experiments in which mice were fed a candy ingredient and forced to swim in a pool of a water mixed with white paint. The mice had to find a hidden platform to avoid drowning, only to be killed and dissected later on. In yet another experiment supported by Mars, rats were fed cocoa and anesthetized with carbon dioxide so that their blood could be collected by injecting a needle directly into their hearts, which can lead to internal bleeding and other deadly complications.
Click here to view the letters from PETA to Paul Michaels, the President of Mars.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Short Story....

Very very good!

Christmas....

I think this Christmas was one of the best we have ever had. We had Mark and Teenie over in Melaka. We left for Melaka on Sat and got back in the early hours of this morning - 4am to be exact. I will be posting all the pictures soon, hopefully by tomorrow afternoon.
I hope everyone got home safely after the Christmas holidays. For all those who are still away, please drive back safely.
Cheers!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year....

I would like to wish everyone a blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year. To all those who will be driving back to your respective hometowns, please drive safely, keep to the speed limits and WEAR YOUR SEATBELTS!
I will be posting an entry a couple of days before Christmas.
Till then, I shall leave you with some humour :)

Friday, December 21, 2007

7 Medical Myths Even Doctors Believe....

I was browsing the Net in the office and I came across this article. Strange, but it is worth the thought. Popular culture today is loaded with myths and half-truths. Most are harmless. But when doctors start believing in medical myths, perhaps it's time to worry.
And so here they are, the 7 Medical Myths Even Doctors Believe:-
Myth No.1: We Use Only 10 Percent Of Our Brains
Fact: Physicians and comedians alike, including Jerry Seinfeld, love to cite this one. It's sometimes erroneously credited to Albert Einstein. But MRI scans, PET scans and other imaging studies show no dormant areas of the brain, and even viewing individual neurons or cells reveals no inactive areas, the new paper points out. Metabolic studies of how brain cells process chemicals show no nonfunctioning areas. The myth probably originated with self-improvement hucksters in the early 1900s who wanted to convince people that they had yet not reached their full potential, Carroll figures. It also doesn't jibe with the fact that our other organs run at full tilt.

Myth No.2: You Should Drink At Least Eight Glasses Of Water A Day
Fact: "There is no medical evidence to suggest that you need that much water," said Dr. Rachel Vreeman, a pediatrics research fellow at the university and co-author of the journal article. Vreeman thinks this myth can be traced back to a 1945 recommendation from the Nutrition Council that a person consume the equivalent of 8 glasses (64 ounces) of fluid a day. Over the years, "fluid" turned to water. But fruits and vegetables, plus coffee and other liquids, count.


Myth No.3: Fingernails And Hair Grow After Death
Fact: Most physicians queried on this one initially thought it was true. Upon further reflection, they realized it's impossible. Here's what happens: "As the body’s skin is drying out, soft tissue, especially skin, is retracting," Vreeman said. "The nails appear much more prominent as the skin dries out. The same is true, but less obvious, with hair. As the skin is shrinking back, the hair looks more prominent or sticks up a bit."

Myth No.4: Shaved Hair Grows Back Faster, Coarser And Darker
Fact: A 1928 clinical trial compared hair growth in shaved patches to growth in non-shaved patches. The hair which replaced the shaved hair was no darker or thicker, and did not grow in faster. More recent studies have confirmed that one. Here's the deal: When hair first comes in after being shaved, it grows with a blunt edge on top, Carroll and Vreeman explain. Over time, the blunt edge gets worn so it may seem thicker than it actually is. Hair that's just emerging can be darker too, because it hasn't been bleached by the sun.

Myth No.5: Reading In Dim Light Ruins Your Eyesight
Fact: The researchers found no evidence that reading in dim light causes permanent eye damage. It can cause eye strain and temporarily decreased acuity, which subsides after rest.

Myth No.6: Eating Turkey Makes You Drowsy
Fact: Even Carroll and Vreeman believed this one until they researched it. The thing is, a chemical in turkey called tryptophan is known to cause drowsiness. But turkey doesn't contain any more of it than does chicken or beef. This myth is fueled by the fact that turkey is often eaten with a colossal holiday meal, often accompanied by alcohol — both things that will make you sleepy.

Myth No.7: Mobile Phones Are Dangerous In Hospitals
Fact: There are no known cases of death related to this one. Cases of less-serious interference with hospital devices seem to be largely anecdotal, the researchers found. In one real study, mobile phones were found to interfere with 4 percent of devices, but only when the phone was within 3 feet of the device. A more recent study, this year, found no interference in 300 tests in 75 treatment rooms. To the contrary, when doctors use mobile phones, the improved communication means they make fewer mistakes.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Melaka & Singapore....

One word - 'tiring'. Damn! The entire weekend started when we left for Melaka in the early hours of Sat morning. We headed to Seremban to drop off the last of the pups. Before that we picked up Pravina from her apartment and headed to Seremban. Met up with Papa Bear at Jusco and passed the pup to him and then we drove straight to Melaka. By the way, Papa Bear will be naming the pup Margie, short for Margarita.
Upon arrival in Melaka, dropped Pravina at Tasha’s parents place and then headed straight home. Amma was waiting for us. Upon having a rest, we headed to the Christmas Dinner at the Christ Church Hall. Dinner was nice; we left early as we promised Aunt Rani that we will be seeing her. Changed, put both the boys (Caesar & Vasco) in the car and headed to Bukit Katil. We didn’t spend much time there as we had to leave at 4am tomorrow. Had a quick drink and came back home.
I didn’t want to sleep as there was risk of oversleeping. Tasha rested for a while. I stayed awake until we bathed, changed and left for Tasha’s parents place. The chartered bus was already there. Once everyone (all the family members) got there we boarded the bus and it was straight to Singapore. Stopped in Yong Peng for a while and then straight to the Tuas Highway. We arrived at the temple by 9.30am. The wedding was at 10am. Met up with Vicknesh and all the other family members who were already there and then the wedding started at sharp 10am. The wedding was a long and elaborate ceremony. I have never been to a Hindu wedding, so it was nice to see all the small ceremonies and rituals that were carried out.
Once the wedding was over, we had one of the best vegetarian banana leaf lunches I have ever eaten. Very nice. After lunch we went to Vicknesh’s house for a while and then headed straight back to Melaka. We only left Singapore at 7pm, got back to Melaka by 11pm. The bus dropped us off at Tasha’s parents’ again. We drove back to the Vicarage. I promised Uncle John & Aunt Rani that I will be going over to watch the Liverpool v Man Utd game there, so I packed some food and went there for dinner. Tasha was too sleepy to she stayed back.
After dinner, got home, changed and we headed back to KL. Yes, I drove back to KL on the same day. Very tiring. Pravs followed us back as well. As soon as we got back to Seri Kembangan, I just had a cold shower and knocked off, woke up only at 2pm the next day. On the whole it was a good trip. Please see the pics below of the engagement.

CONGRATULATIONS VICKNESH & YOGES!









Monday, December 17, 2007

Thank You....

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the following hearts for adopting the 3 pups that survived. Sadly, 3 of the most adorable pups in world that were with me passed on. They were weak, could not eat properly and they missed their mum very much. Anyway, the following are the ones I hope and pray God will bless for having such good hearts:-

(1) Kristina Saloman & Xiao Wan
(2) Pravin (Papa Bear)
(3) Shaun
Tasha and I would like to personally thank each and every one of you for helping us with the adoption.
God bless!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Thank You Appa & Amma....

Appa and Amma came to KL this afternoon. Appa has always wanted to come by the new house. Appa blessed the house. We read a lesson from the Bible and we went around the entire house and Appa blessed it. Upon doing that, I drove them to KL as they were on the next bus back to Melaka.
I can't wait to go back to Melaka this weekend. I'll be attending a Christmas dinner at the Church Hall on Saturday and then we're leaving for Singapore on Sunday to attend Vicknesh's wedding.
I will be updating the blog with a lot of pics. Till then, have a great weekend everyone.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Graveyard Shift....

This article was sent to me by my fellow comrade, Mr. Damien Thanam Divean who like many others' works the graveyard shift as well. This is an eye opener. I do hope many of you who are working graveyard shifts will consider changing your shift to the normal day shift from now on. I have somewhat changed my working hours from the US hours to the UK hours. It is not too bad, but I know when the right opportunity comes, I will be the first to opt for the normal working hours. I mean, come on man, I'd rather live longer :)
A true eye opener:-
GRAVEYARD SHIFT LINKED TO CANCER
By Maria Cheng

Like UV rays and diesel exhaust fumes, working the graveyard shift will soon be listed as a "probable" cause of cancer. It is a surprising step validating a concept once considered wacky. And it is based on research that finds higher rates of breast and prostate cancer among women and men whose work day starts after dark.

Next month, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, the cancer arm of the World Health Organization, will add overnight shift work as a probable carcinogen. The American Cancer Society says it will likely follow. Up to now, the U.S. organization has considered the work-cancer link to be "uncertain, controversial or unproven."

The higher cancer rates don't prove working overnight can cause cancer. There may be other factors common among graveyard shift workers that raise their risk for cancer. However, scientists suspect that overnight work is dangerous because it disrupts the circadian rhythm, the body's biological clock. The hormone melatonin, which can suppress tumor development, is normally produced at night. If the graveyard shift theory eventually proves correct, millions of people worldwide could be affected. Experts estimate that nearly 20 percent of the working population in developed countries work night shifts.

Among the first to spot the night shift-cancer connection was Richard Stevens, a cancer epidemiologist and professor at the University of Connecticut Health Center. In 1987, Stevens published a paper suggesting a link between light at night and breast cancer. Back then, he was trying to figure out why breast cancer incidence suddenly shot up starting in the 1930s in industrialized societies, where nighttime work was considered a hallmark of progress. Most scientists were bewildered by his proposal. But in recent years, several studies have found that women working at night over many years were indeed more prone to breast cancer. Also, animals that have their light-dark schedules switched develop more cancerous tumors and die earlier. Some research also suggests that men working at night may have a higher rate of prostate cancer.

Because these studies mostly focused on nurses and airline crews, bigger studies in different populations are needed to confirm or disprove the findings. There are still plenty of skeptics. And to put the risk in perspective, the "probable carcinogen" tag means that the link between overnight work and cancer is merely plausible.


Among the long list of agents that are listed as "known" carcinogens are alcoholic beverages and birth control pills. Such lists say nothing about exposure amount or length of time or how likely they are to cause cancer. The American Cancer Society Web site notes that carcinogens do not cause cancer at all times. Still, many doubters of the night shift link may be won over by the IARC's analysis to be published in the December issue of the journal Lancet Oncology.

"The indications are positive," said Vincent Cogliano, who heads up the agency's carcinogen classifications unit. "There was enough of a pattern in people who do shift work to recognize that there's an increase in cancer, but we can't rule out the possibility of other factors." Scientists believe having lower melatonin levels can raise the risk of developing cancer. Light shuts down melatonin production, so people working in artificial light at night may have lower melatonin levels.

Melatonin can be taken as a supplement, but experts don't recommend it long-term, since that could ruin the body's ability to produce it naturally. Sleep deprivation may be another factor in cancer risk. People who work at night are not usually able to completely reverse their day and night cycles.

"Night shift people tend to be day shift people who are trying to stay awake at night," said Mark Rea, director of the Light Research Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York, who is not connected with the IARC analysis. Not getting enough sleep makes your immune system vulnerable to attack, and less able to fight off potentially cancerous cells.

Confusing your body's natural rhythm can also lead to a breakdown of other essential tasks. "Timing is very important, ," Rea said. Certain processes like cell division and DNA repair happen at regular times.

Even worse than working an overnight shift is flipping between daytime and overnight work.

"The problem is re-setting your body's clock," said Aaron Blair, of the United States' National Cancer Institute, who chaired IARC's recent meeting on shift work. "If you worked at night and stayed on it, that would be less disruptive than constantly changing shifts."

Anyone whose light and dark schedule is often disrupted — including frequent long-haul travelers or insomniacs — could theoretically face the same increased cancer risk, Stevens said.

He advises workers to sleep in a darkened room once they get off work. "The balance between light and dark is very important for your body. Just get a dark night's sleep." Meanwhile, scientists are trying to come up with ways to reduce night workers' cancer risk. And some companies are experimenting with different lighting, seeking a type that doesn't affect melatonin production.

So far, the color that seems to have the least effect on melatonin is one that few people would enjoy working under: red.

American Cancer Society's list of known and probable carcinogens from IARC, the National Toxicology Program:
http://tinyurl.com/2kl5ab and International Agency for Research on Cancer: http://www.iarc.fr/

Pups For Adoption....

On Tuesday, I went to the Pet Family Store in Taman Megah to buy Caesar's & Vasco's food and supplies. At the entrance of the shop, I saw 6 cute lil' puppies lying down on the floor next to a kennel - there was a sign on the kennel that read: "Please Adopt Us. Someone Left Us Here". I asked the owner what had happened, he said when he came in to open the shop for business, the pups were already there in a box, getting wet in the rain. How could someone be so cruel? These pups did not do anything, they are so innocent.
Anyway, I told the owner that I will take all of them home. I quickly bought whatever I needed and left. The staffs at the shop helped me put all of them in a big box and I took them back. There were 5 females and 1 male. I had 6 pups in total, damn! I took them home not even knowing if I could find any homes for them, but I was confident that I could somehow find them homes.
As soon as we got back, gave all of them milk. I actually bought a milk bottle, and slowly fed all of them. They slept. But I realised that the male one was not looking too good. Tasha spent a lot of time with him. Putting him on ler lap, feeding him every now and then, playing with him and all. Then she left for work. When I came back from work, the 5 females were fine. But the male one, had died :(
I was so sad. I had tears in my eyes as we had spent so much of our time caring for him. We had a soft spot for him as he was the most loving among all 6 of them. Anyway, I cleaned the place he was in.
In the office I highlighted the plight to everyone I came into contact with. Kristina and Xiao Wan agreed to adopt one of them. They came to my place and took her, she was the white one with grey patches. I fed the others and slept. When I came downstairs to get ready to go to work, another female one had died :(
I tore me apart to see them dying one by one. But there was nothing I could do to stop it from happening. The pups were taken away from their mum too early. From what I can see, they are hardly 2 months old. Possibly, just a month old. Tasha and I did everything possible to care, feed and shower them with love. One of Tasha's colleagues (Shaun) has agreed to adopt one of the pups. That leaves us with 2 more pups which are up for adoption.
We're looking for good homes for these lovely fur-kids. Please call us soon as we need to find them homes. Here are the pictures.


The 2 of them

Again the 2 of them

These are all 3 of them

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Salute To Alcohol....

I've always wanted to write an article on alcohol. Sadly, I've never had the time to do it. I would like to personally thank Ms. Brenda James for her constant contribution towards the creativity of this blog. To all my fellow kudikarens & kudikarees....

Here's a couple of alcohol inspired nuggets for the road and the compulsory warning labels that come with them:

Sometimes when I reflect back on all the wine I drink, I feel shame. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the vineyards and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn't drink this wine, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself,

"It is better that I drink this wine and let their dreams come true than be selfish and worry about my liver." - Jack Handy -
WARNING:
The consumption of alcohol may leave you wondering what the hell happened to your bra and panties.

"I feel sorry for people who don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as
they're going to feel all day. " - Frank Sinatra -
WARNING:
The consumption of alcohol may cause you to think you can sing.

"24 hours in a day, 24 beers in a case. Coincidence? I think not." - Stephen Wright -

WARNING:
The consumption of alcohol may create the illusion that you are tougher, smarter, faster and better looking than most people.


"Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." - Benjamin Franklin -

WARNING:
The consumption of alcohol is a major factor in dancing like a retard.


"Without question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer. Oh, I grant you that the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza."- Dave Barry -

WARNING:
The consumption of alcohol may cause you to tell your friends over and over again that you love them.


"To some it's a six-pack. To me it's a Support Group. Salvation in a can!" - Dave Howell -

WARNING:
The consumption of alcohol may make you think you can logically converse with members of the opposite sex without spitting.


And saving the best for last, as explained by Cliff Clavin, of Cheers…

One afternoon at Cheers, Cliff Clavin was explaining the Buffalo Theory to his buddy Norm. Here's how it went: "Well ya see, Nam , it's like this. A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest buffalo. And when the herd is hunted, it is the slowest and weakest ones at the back that are killed first. This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because the general speed and health of the whole group keeps improving by the regular killing of the weakest members. In much the same way, the human brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. Excessive intake of alcohol, as we know, kills brain cells. But naturally, it attacks the slowest and weakest brain cells first. In this way, regular consumption of beer eliminates the weaker brain cells, making the brain a faster and more efficient machine. That's why you always feel smarter after a few beers."

WARNING:
The consumption of alcohol may make you think you are whispering when you are not. And also, make your gay/lesbian tendencies more apparent. So drink up. It keeps the sober people entertained.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Dog Quotes....

The quotes below are dedicated to my lovely 2 fur-kids - Caesar Boy and Vasco The Rascal.

"An animal's eyes have the power to speak a great language." ~ Martin Buber

"We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." ~ Immanual Kant

"Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." ~ Roger Caras

"You think dogs will not be in heaven? I tell you, they will be there long before any of us" ~ Robert Louis Stevenson

"A dog is the only thing on earth that will love you more than you love yourself." ~ Josh Billings

"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened." ~ Anatole France

"There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face." ~ Ben Williams

"To err is human, to forgive, canine" ~ Anonymous

"You can say any foolish thing to a dog, and the dog will give you a look that says, 'My God, you're right! I never would've thought of that!'" ~ Dave Barry

"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated." ~ Mahatma Gandhi

"Every boy should have two things: a dog, and a mother willing to let him have one" ~ Anonymous

"A dog has lots of friends because he wags his tail and not his tongue." ~ Anonymous

"The average dog is a nicer person than the average person." ~ Andrew A. Rooney

"The greatest pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with him and not only will he not scold you, but he will make a fool of himself, too." ~ Samuel Butler

"If a dog jumps in your lap, it is because he is fond of you; but if a cat does the same thing, it is because you lap is warmer." ~ Alfred North Whitehead