Thursday, April 30, 2009

Busy Week

It just dawned on me that it's the end of the week already. This week flew by so fast for me. Had so many things I had to do.

The good news is that this week we finally managed to interview some people who I think are great and seem really passionate about working at Nuffnang. Think our long patience in finding the right people to hire has finally paid off.

Apart from the usual work stuff, I also spent much of this week preparing for a Blog Marketing and New Media Workshop that I'm supposed to conduct next week.

Project 365: Day 73, 29th April 2009

As always I look extremely boyish. Sometimes when I go give talks like this to people who have spent far many more years in the advertising industry than I have, I can't help but feel like I should be the one in the audience listening to them talk instead of vice versa. 

One thing I definitely have to learn though is how to save more money. I'm terribly bad when it comes to saving. I think I save a lower proportion of my income than most people do. I mean I don't exactly buy any branded stuff and all that but I think I spend way too much money on food. It doesn't help that I eat out a lot and I like eating at some great restaurants every now and then.


Off to Singapore tomorrow for a half work half play trip.

Have a great Labour Day Weekend everyone!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


Hello Rome!

Well not actually in Rome but at the Heineken Roma Final 2009 at Metropol on Saturday night.

The front entrance had this big sign with bottles spelling out the words.

And yes that's Desmondkiu in the picture with me talking on the phone while I was posing. As you can all see, I wasn't important enough for him to pay proper attention to when taking a picture with.
"A Night in Rome" was an event last Saturday organized by Heineken where they had a very Italian/Roman theme to the whole thing. On the outside of what is a Mercedes Showroom on a regular day, they put up all these backdrops of Rome to make it look as if we were all there.

Adds to the fun of us bloggers to take some pictures. This is me trying to get Princess to pretend with me that we're in Rome sight-seeing. 
She couldn't take the pretend and just started laughing.

So I gave up on her and got Jia Meei, Li Tat and his sister to pose as tourists with me.

I say we did a GOOD JOB! Agree? 

Makes you almost want to go up to and try to sell us a fake Gucci handbag.

Then we quickly got bored pretending to be tourists and just started taking regular pictures

And sitting down to drink.

After enough beers to make me a little woozy we headed inside to where everyone was already waiting for the show to start.

It was PACKED!
The event started off with some opera, 

then on to a fashion show with a Roman kind of theme. The models all were dressed up to look like Gladiators ... well in their own right.

After the fashion show they brought this group from Australia in called Bumble Bees. There was a guy DJing and a girl who just stood behind him dancing to the beat.

At first we were wondering what the hell she was doing there apart from looking pretty but she suddenly started rapping and fuuuhh we were pleasantly surprised!

In between the performances I got a little hungry so I headed to the VIP area somewhere in the back (I never knew I was a VIP till the later end of the night), where I had a truck load of these cute little burgers.

Reminded me of a really stupid joke somebody once told me
Question: What do you call a happy burger?
Answer: "Bur-Gembira".

And after eating I felt thirsty so I ended up drinking more and more. 

Seriously... the members had this cool computer where you can just tap your membership card and they'll give you free booze.

I had so many bottles of Heineken I lost count at 5 *ashamed

After some alcohol in my blood I joined the crowd again and found Cindy, Huai Bin, KY and the rest on the dance floor dancing.

I like this picture.
Huai Bin looked scary, Cindy looked sassy and Princess looked goofy... like a cute little baby walrus.

Aww *sayang* my baby walrus!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Korean Drama

Was at Princess' place tonight to have dinner with her family.

After dinner we sat down to watch this Korean drama called... something flowers and something boys.

Halfway through the TV show Princess' mother called
"AUDREY.... come and throw out the trash".

Princess gave a very sour face. Grumbled and then lazily got up from the couch. I got up to help her but she said turned to me and said
"No!!! STAY!! SIT DOWN!!!"

I think she wanted to make sure that I didn't miss anything so I can tell her what happened later on. She quickly ran to the back to get the trash and I expected her to come out with a big black plastic bag full of trash but she came out with this tiny little bag.
Project 365: Day 72, 28th April 2009

Then she darted to the front door which was when I took this picture.

Was feeling a bit bored of the Korean drama so I switched channels. I experienced a few seconds of silence until she came back into the house again dashing from the front door, pass the living room and straight into the kitchen (I think to wash her hands or something).

And in the 4 seconds I saw her run across the room like a Warner Bros. Roadrunner, she said
"WHAT HAPPENED WHAT HAPPENED WHAT HAPPENED *realizes that I changed the channel* ARRRRRGGGGHHHH!!!!!!"

I changed it back shortly. And as punishment I had to massage/tickle her palm for the next half hour.

Scams To Fish Your Banking Information

Received an SMS just yesterday afternoon around 4.04PM saying that I had a payment overdue for my UOB credit card and that I had to call someone named Praba to avoid further proceeding/execution against me. Not sure what "proceeding/execution" means but I think he meant "prosecution".


Project 365: Day 71, 27th April 2009

The only funny thing though is.... I don't HAVE a UOB credit card. So I knew it was a scam to just fish for my personal banking details and hopefully illegally syphon money out of my account (little do they know though that I don't have much money in my account to begin with hahaa).

Anyway I was tempted to play along and reply 
"OH NO NO!!! WHAT DO I DO?!?!?!"

But I got distracted with work so I decided to leave it alone.

And about 8.52PM later that night the same number sent me another SMS. This time Praba is says he's from Kudrat Partners & Co.

Watch out for these kind of scams guys. Bank Negara put up an announcement not long ago warning people of these scams.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

What A Week

I spent almost the whole weekend at home in bed just lying around and watching TV. It had been an eventful but tiring week all round.

Let me just recap the things that happened this week.

1) I heard that a business of some people I know of take a big hit because of something totally out of their control. The good thing though is that they have many businesses and they're still doing pretty well but this one loss sure hurt a little.

Reminded me on how business can suddenly take drastic turns for the worse sometimes. 

2) Watched the Opera Winfrey show tonight and watched as she interviewed a few successful entrepreneurs ilike Gurbaksh Chahal and Tony Hsieh who just in their twenties acquired a networth of over USD 100M.
High flying achievers like this in America make you wonder what the hell you're doing with your life.

3) Got backstabbed by a friend this week that is trying to do something which would actually hurt me and the people important to me.  There's just something about me that just attracts some really good friends but at the same time some really bad ones as well.

4) Learned that disappointment in people and in myself is the thing that emotionally affects me the most. I get very worked up when people I put a lot of faith in disappoint me. At the same time I get very affected too when I disappoint these same group of people because I did or didn't do something. 

This week I disappointed one of these people and it took a pep-talk from Ming to make me realize what I had done wrong.

5) Went to the dentist this week to get a filling. About an hour later after I left the clinic I realized that the dentist made the filling too high so I couldn't close my jaws properly. I would chew on food but no matter how hard I bit down on my food there  was still a gap in between my teeth because my new filling was standing out like a pillar.

Had to go back to the dentist the next day to get it adjusted.


6) Went for Heineken's "Night in Rome" on Saturday night but will blog about it later in the next few days. Was good fun.

Project 365: Day 69, 25th April 2009

7) A Happy Occasion this week was that Ming's birthday was on Saturday. He celebrated it in Singapore with some friends. Wasn't able to join him but I bought him a present some time back.

Being someone who loves gadgets a lot I bought him a Pulse Smart Pen.

It's pretty cool. It basically digitalizes whatever you write on a notebook so that whatever is written is transfered into a PDF file in your computer. It does a whole lot of other things too like it allows you to record whatever was being heard or said while you were writing a word.

So say you were writing notes in lecture right, if you tap on some of your notes it'll replay back what the lecturer was saying at the time you wrote that.

Here's a video of Ming showing some of its other funny features to some of the Nuffies in the Singapore office.

Happy Birthday Ming!


I've had a tough week with so many ups and downs. One thing I'm thankful for though is that I have a girlfriend who would get angry for me when I'm angry about something or cheer me up when I feel sad.

I'm going to go to bed now.... for tomorrow's the beginning of a whole new week.

Project 365: Day 70, 26th April 2009

The good thing though is that it's a 4-day week!!! Long Live Labour Day!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Alone At Night In The Nuffnang Office

The Nuffnang office is a place where you'll see people in almost 15 of the 24 hours of the day. Sometimes some of us end up staying till very late so even at night say 8.30PM you'll often see at least some of us still around.

Last night the Nuffies went to Hennessy Artistry together. I didn't go. Chose instead to stay home and play XBOX. Yes I know I'm anti-social. 

So right after work they all went to Pavilion for dinner together just before they went for the event. Sue had a lot of work to do though so she decided to stay behind.

This is how the Nuffnang Office looks late at night when everyone is gone. I took this picture some time ago and it was at like 12AM or something when I was working late alone.

While everyone was out, suddenly the electricity supply in the entire office building got cut off and our office went almost totally dark (except for the lights from the neighbouring buildings through our windows).

Sue was all alone and she got a little scared so she called up Nicholas to ask when the rest of the Nuffies were coming back to the office.

Nicholas told her they were coming back soon but added 
"Hey Sue, sometimes at night right one of the toilets will keep overflowing but if that happens then just ignore it ok?"

Sue went something like

And Nicholas went on to add again
"Oh and if you hear like the sound of a baby crying from the toilet then just ignore it ok?"

I don't know what Sue said after that but I heard from the rest that by the time they all got back from dinner they saw Sue waiting in the lobby of our building with all the security guards looking very traumatized.

Nicholas and the rest all had a good laugh about it. They told me about it over lunch today.

Nicholas was saying
"I don't understand why some people are so scared of ghosts. I mean if it was me and I heard a toilet overflowing and a baby crying in the middle of the night I would just open the door and shout "THE FUCK IS GOING ON IN HERE?!?!"

Project 365: Day 68, 24th April 2009

I'd really love to see Nicholas do that.

What would you guys do if you heard something like that at home or in the office late at night?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Window Washing

Was in the office today and I happened to look out the window and saw a man washing the windows of the building right next to mine.

Project 365: Day 67, 23rd April 2009

I couldn't help but think.... "What will happen if it suddenly started raining heavily?"

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Carol's Birthday

Last night I was out with Ming and Pierre for dinner. We were stuck in the office till quite late so we had a late dinner at Jarrod & Rawlins.

By the time we got there we were starving. Ming instructed:
"Eh I'm fucking hungry... Order a horse!"

This is what "a horse" looks like and that's just for 3 people.

Project 365: Day 65, 21st April 2009

Pierre was supposed to buy dinner that night but we ordered so much I felt bad so Ming and I picked up the tab in the end.


Today is Carol's birthday. In Nuffnang we have this thing called "Birthday Leave" where if your birthday falls on a workday then you're expected to take leave. Most of us don't normally take it though and end up at work. Somehow at least to me, work doesn't feel like work.

Carol had to come to work whether she liked it or not though. She just had/has too much shit to do. But I told her to come in a little later since it was a birthday so she could sleep in a little. The minute she walked into the office and headed to her workstation she saw this.

Flowers and a bra. 
Project 365: Day 66, 22nd April 2009

The bra came from Yee Hou and Nicholas as part of some private joke between them and Carol. Apparently some time ago one of them asked Carol what she wished for and she said "bigger boobs".

There were two sets of flowers. One from Huai Bin.

Which even included a box of Godiva chocolates.

And another from...
Her secret admirer.

Up till now I still don't know who that is. Whoever you are... own up already! Claim your credit!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

My Secondary School Report Card

When I was back in Penang last weekend I had the chance to catch up with family and also with some old memories. While going through the stuff in my room I came across this.

My secondary school report card! 

Now let me first tell you a bit about my secondary school life. I did Form 1 in Sekolah Sri Inai in Penang, one of the few coed schools in Penang. Yes believe it or not, most of Penang's secondary schools weren't coed. 

Just like in Primary school, I did terribly in Form 1 failing some 5 out of 13 or so subjects that I took. To make matters worse, I was 13 and my hormones had started to kick in. I had began to start learning that I like girls so I got myself a girlfriend at age 13 and did a lot less studying.

I was so PDA with this girlfriend in school I remember once being called up to the Principle's office where he and another female teacher talked to my girlfriend at the time and I about sex and how it's a bad thing!

Back then my girlfriend at the time and I were too young to think about sex so we were like "Are they crazy?"

Yes.. it was still the time where whenever someone in class mentioned the S word, everyone else would go "EWWWwwwwwww!!!". Such a big contrast right? Just 5 years later in college if someone were to mention "sex" in class, everyone instead would go "WOOOOoooo!!!"

Anyway my worried parents decided to drag me out of Sri Inai and throw me into a boy school called St. Xaviers Institution where I spent my Form 2 till Form 5.

I remember being sad in the first day of school. No more girls dressed in light blue pinafores... just all guys dressed in white shirts and dark green pants. It felt as if someone had taken away my mojo.

They streamed classes in St. Xaviers. To put it bluntly, they put the smart people in 1 and the dumb people in 8.

I expected to be put in 2/1 or 2/2 which were the top two classes for form 2 but I ended up in 2/5.... a not so smart class. 

At first I still didn't really care.

This is how seriously I actually took my studies: On the first page of my report card we were all supposed to put a picture of how we look like when we first entered the school. This is how my picture looks like (with some help from a friend's artistic talents).

Yes.... we added on the red glasses to make me look like Cyclops from X-Men. By some miracle I never got rotanned for this.

Anyway, after a while I realized that I was actually quite stupid and for the first time in my life I started actually studying. You can actually see the gradual improvements in my grades right in my report card from Form 2 onwards.

You're all about to see Timothy Tiah's actual secondary school report card!


This is the results of the first test I ever took when I first entered Form 2.

Notice that I failed Geography. Seriously.... I mean that was such a terrible subject in school. Also notice that I got 44 for Pendidikan Seni. When Princess saw that she said "HAH!!! Figures!" remembering the drawings in my old scout log book.

What she didn't know was that while you think 44 might be a bad mark for Art, I actually was supposed to get a lot lower. 30% of the grade for Pendidikan Seni was theory and 70% on practical (that means actual drawing).

For theory I would get something good like 25 out of 30.... but my Practical was a pityful ase. I would end up getting something like 19/70 which explains why my marks were so low.

A few pages down the report card is where it gets interesting.

There's one full page that records down the marks for each years' mid-term and final exams (the most two important exams in the year).

This sheet also shows what rank you are in class and in the entire form.

Pay attention to the ranks first.

In Form 2 I got between 96-130 out of 286 students in the form.

In Form 3 I climbed up from there to 62-81 out of 283.

By the end of Form 3 I was an okay student. Not particularly bright but not stupid either. I got 5As for my PMR which was considered above average but not smart because I think something like 60 out of the 283 students from my school who sat in PMR my year got straight As.

Then Form 4 came and it was time to split us into streams. Against the will of my school counsellor I went into Arts Stream. For some reason even up till today I think, if you're smart you're supposed to go to Science Stream. I refused to go simply because I knew then that I didn't want to be an engineer, a doctor or anything along those lines so why go Science?

Besides I wanted to learn Commerce and Literature as opposed to Biology and I felt kinda assured because a few of the top guys in the form back then who were also my role models were also going into the Arts Stream so I knew that I had some smarter people to teach me if I didn't know anything.

The first exam I had in Arts Stream was a disaster... not just for me but for everyone! We just had some really bad teachers for some of the classes we had.

For example, it was the first year learning Prinsip Akaun and all the Arts classes were taught by one very very very very very very bad teacher. I mean he was a nice teacher... but just really really bad at teaching.

After the mid-term exams we all ended up with totally shit results. I remember the highest in the form for Prinsip Akaun that time to be something like 70. I got 17. Look at the bright red mark in the picture.

So my mum panicked when she saw my Prinsip Akaun mark and forced me into going for this tuition. By the end of the year, I went from 17 to 96 in Prinsip Akaun.

The joke was that even with an average of 65.9% I ended up getting 2nd place out of 154 in my Arts Stream (partly because everyone else did shit too).

When Princess saw that she was like
"WTF?!?!? How come your school standard so low wan!!!!"

I told her off
"WOI!!! Don't talk bad about my school! St. Xaviers if I may add is one of the Top 3 boy schools in Penang!!!" *defensive

Then Form 5 came and for the first time in my life I became the 1st in my Form (Arts Stream) with an average mark of 79%. I think the huge jump in the average mark was explained by making the exams a lot easier after they killed us with the ones in Form 4.

Again Princess went
"What?!?!? First in the form so low average wan?!?!"

And I defended my Alma Mater again!

Then she looked deeper into my grades and she saw something amiss
"How come your marks all so high but your average mark in the end still so low?"

Then she spotted the mark that dragged me down

But that it was true.

While I studied very hard and did well in Form 4 and Form 5 there were two subjects that I struggled with because I had a very weak foundation in (thanks to my not studying at all in my earlier school years): Mathematics and BM. I eventually got an A1 in SPM for Modern maths and even an A for A-level maths in college but my BM till today still isn't as good as it should be =(

Anyway the last exam I took in school which was the SPM trial exam, I lost my position as the 1st in the Form down to getting 3rd. Either ways I eventually did pretty well in SPM which helped me get into a good college and eventually uni.

Here's what I think about education though. I don't believe in academic results being able to help us tell who's smart and who's not. I believe that it does help us generalize people but that generalization comes with a loss of accuracy. I mean every study or course is one methodology of its own to try to figure out if you're smart or not. The problem with that is that all human beings are made to be different so while some may do well in exam A, they may not do well in exam B while others may.

That explains why you have so many people like Richard Branson or Philip Green who didn't do very well in school but are self-made billionaires today. 

Closer to home you have examples like Ron Sim of Osim or many other successful entrepreneurs or professionals that never were really good in studies at school but have done well for themselves in life. So I guess if you hate studying or if you're not very good at it, it's not the end... 
That's at least what I was thinking while I sat down pondering about life that day.

I think making it in life depends on a lot more than just what kind of grades you got in school. For me I think luck plays a big part... which is why I think I'm one of the luckiest people around.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Sunset from the Office

The view during sunset today from the office.

Project 365: Day 64, 20 April 2009

See the sun in the horizon!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Weekend in Penang

Whew! The weekend is over... what a weekend indeed. Let me tell you what I've been doing in as small a nutshell as possible.

Friday I was at Jia Meei's birthday party at this Indonesian restaurant in a Kampung off Penchala Link. 

Jia Meei's old now.... think she turned like 60 that day. Happy 60th Birthday Jia Meei!

Project 365: Day 61, 17th April 2009

Saturday morning came and I headed back to Penang just for a night to see my parents. I haven't been back to Penang in a long time. My parents wished that I could stay longer but I have just got way too much work to do in KL to extend my stay. 


Anyway I went with Princess to Batu Feringgi last night to walk around and I accidentally stepped on her slipper while she was just lifting up her foot to take another step.

I successfully tore her slipper into two.

Princess looked down at her slipper for a while looking a little sad.

Project 365: Day 62, 18th April 2009

Then she looked up at me and her face changed from sad to the stare of a glaring witch. I could almost feel everyone around me backing away trying to stay away from what Princess was going to do to me for tearing her slipper.

I could've sworn I saw lightning light up the sky behind her while she gave me that glare. I barely survived Saturday night.

Sunday morning came and I was already packing to head back to KL. Before I left Penang my mum prepared something my family refers to as Mee Fan Koh for me for lunch. I don't know if anyone else has this but in hokkien they call it "Mee Hun Kuey". 

Project 365: Day 63, 19th April 2009

It's basically flour in pork-based soup. I used to eat this almost every Sunday since I was a little boy. Nothing like mum's cooking! :)

Friday, April 17, 2009

Shopping at Pavilion

Two weekends ago, Princess and I went to shop in Pavilion. We normally shop in Sungai Wang because everything there is cheaper but we had just gotten our pay cheques not long ago being the beginning of the month so we were feeling rich.

We decided to go somewhere with class and shop with all the tai tai's. We went kai kai around Bukit Bintang and settled for Pavilion.

Upon getting to Pavilion and looking at the people around us we began to notice something amiss. We were at a very high class place... but dressed extremely LOW CLASS.

Princess was wearing shorts with a Hello Kitty T-shirt.

And I was dressed in jeans, sneakers and a Stewie T-shirt that said "I'd love to stay and chat but you're a total bitch!".

So low class that they wouldn't let me anywhere near the Ferrari they had on display.

Nevertheless, we decided that we weren't dressed the part but we were going to try to act the part. So we very nonchalantly walked into the Tag Heuer shop near the Bukit Bintang entrance.

When we walked in there were some other middle-aged men checking out the watches and the staff there were helping them try on some watches.

We walked in and smiled at everyone around us but nobody really paid us any attention. Then I tried to get a bit more attention by going nearer to some of the watches and pretending to be interested.

Finally a saleswoman there came over to help.

Acting the part, I asked to see one of the watches that were in the glass case right below my elbow. She took out the watch and I tried it on then asked how much.

The saleswoman replied
"This one is RM8,000".

I NEARLY VOMITED BLOOD but I reminded myself that I was playing the part so I pretended to say 
"Oh... that's not very expensive at all... right Princess?"

And turned to Princess. Princess played along and nodded.

I was hoping Princess would play along even more and say something that would make us look like Aristocrats. You know... perhaps say
"Darling... we have to hurry. Remember you have to meet the guys to play Polo later".

But she did none of that. All she did was sit down on the chair and look at herself in the mirror while adjusting her fringe like a schoolgirl!

Seriously Baby! You gave us both away!

To make matters worse, I was looking at one of the watches there when I got a phone call from my brother. So I was holding my phone with one hand and holding the watch with the other when I accidentally dropped the watch on the glass panel. 

I heard a loud "PIAANG" (nothing broke fortunately).

And I just went


The expression on the salesgirl's face was priceless. The minute I picked up the watch and put it down again on the leather mat she quickly grabbed it to keep it away from me.

I could almost tell what was running through her mind at the time
"Fucking college kid... get out of my damn shop already before you break something you can't afford".

So Princess and I quickly excused ourselves by saying the usual goodbye line to salesgirls
"I'll come back later".

We left the Tag shop and started walking around. Princess then decided that she wanted to make an entrance at the Gucci shop. So Hello Kitty and Stewie went to Gucci.

Damn shy okay? But we decided to be brave anyway!

We walked in then quickly walked one round in the shop and darted for the exit before they called on two big bouncers to throw us out.

At the end of the day Princess and I left Pavilion feeling very unaccomplished. Even with our newly received pay cheques, we still couldn't afford to buy almost everything in Pavilion except for the egg tart in the basement. 

But we HAD to buy something from Bukit Bintang! For bragging rights if anything!

So we walked out of Pavilion down the road into a 7-11 in an alley nearby and I bought Princess an ice-cream. Fortunately Princess isn't materialistic.

An ice-cream was all that was necessary to make Hello Kitty happy.

And making Hello Kitty happy is all that you need to make Stewie happy.