Nothing to Envy: Real Lives in North Korea

This is a great piece of Journalism. And it really gave us a glimpse into the life of North Korea, the most secretive country, shutting it self out from the World, through 6 individuals that have defected to South Korea. It also open our eyes to the cruelty of Communism when the Power of the Elite Ruling Level was left unchecked, unchallenged and unopposed. And also the employing mass brainwashing, propaganda, information control, education, terror, in order to keep in power.

A very good read. After reading this book, I was determined to start and finish 2 classic English Literature: Animal Farm and 1984 by George Orwell.


The Trillion-Dollar Conspiracy, by Jim Marrs

Long time since I post on my blog.

I just finished a book my Jim Marrs, on how Americans were deceived by the Federal Reserve Bankers. How and why the Elites manipulate the US Government, how/why they stage the 9/11 terror attack in order to achieve: 1. Invasion into IRAQ because of Oil, 2. Invasion to Afghanistan because of the Poppy Fields, and the Pipeline to transport the Oil, 3. Passing of the PATRIOT ACT, that is worse in infringement of human rights than our Malaysian ISA.

Very interesting collection of journalism articles, to expose the information that we will never get from main stream media.

Jim Marrs theory on the reason behind JFK's assassination also seems very convincing.

I am reading his other books.


Shinjyuku Incident

Enjoyed the movie very much. The social problems and incidents, life in Japan during the 90s is as closely as depicted in the movie. I was in tokyo, Japan during the same period as the movie is based on. Further more, I was working in the same Shinjyuku area (新宿、高田馬場、新大久保、百人町)for both of my part time jobs. I did sent Food to a Yakuza residence also.
Although the movie pace is a bit too fast, the story unfolds too quickly, and characters have less time to develop. Jackie Chan's acting is a bit lack of emotion. He looked too serious and always unhappy. But Daniel Wu was really good. His character enable him to show all the emotions a person can experience. From hope to happy, extreme pain and despair, and finally rage and death. His character pitiful, but outshines every one and unforgettable. The Japanese actor, Naoto Takenaka 竹中直人, the police detective is a veteran actor, and his acting is good.
Many strong violence actions survived the Malaysia Censorship Board, but not the language.
Strogly recommended to all.


Year End Year Start Holiday 2008/09

Photo Gallery (only 88 pictures of about 1,000 I took.)


2009/12/20-22 Shanghai
Flew into Shanghai to meet up my wife. Before our marriage registration, just hang around in Shanghai to meet up with her friends and my friend.

2008/12/22-24 Changsa-Yuan Ling-Changsa
Met up my parents in Pudong Airport and went to Changsa. Got myself registered for marriage in Changsa. The next day went Yuan Ling to meet up my wife's family. Had a dinner with her Relatives. On 24th, we took a bus back to Changsa. Back in Changsa, we went to the Mummy Museum, where they have housed a 2000 year old mummy of a noble woman. Met up with Aunt and Cousin flew from Singapore.

2008/12/25-27 Zhang Jia Jie
Started 1st leg of our tour.
1. Huang Long Caves
Yellow Dragon Cave is one of the foremost scenic areas in Zhangjiajie, and was rated as one of the first 4A National Tourist Attractions in China. Also it has been honored as "magical karst cave both in China and in the world". This system of caves is a typical karst formation, water plays an extremely important role in its development. Flowing into the fissures of the karst layer, water constantly dissolves the limestone rock. The Cave took 200 million years in the making.
2. Zhang Jia Jie Park
We only covered some part of the Park. Huang Shi Zai, Shi Li Hua Lang, Bao Feng Hu. And we missed the Golden Whip River, Tian Men Shan Temple.

2008/12/27-28 Changsa--Harbin
We had a good rest after the Zhang Jia Jie Trip. My father left for Malaysia and we flew to Harbin in the afternoon flight and reach there night time. We got lead to a super expensive shop selling gloves and winter ice boots. Later I found out the for the stuff I bought there at RMB330, I should be able to get the same quality stuff elsewhere at RMB100. totally suck by the tour guide. Should be careful next time.

2008/12/28-2009/1/1 Harbin-Double Peak Mountain-Harbin
Well, the trip to Double Peak Mountain is not what I have expected. It took more than 6 hours of drive from Harbin, while the itinerary shown is just 4 hours. should have gone to Yabuli instead which is nearer. by the time we reached there, not much time to lay or ski, as the sky turned dark 4pm. We slept at 7pm. Better keep off this place and go to Yabuli Ski Resort instead.

Witnessing the Winter Festival Ice Sculpture and Snow Sculpture is really worth all the effort to Harbin. too bad the snow sculpture is still not 100% finish when we were there. Officially starts from 5th of Jan every year.
We went to the Siberia Tiger Park. The animals there are not too lively, probably the cold and too long in captivity. They are just like big house cats.
The Central Street and St.Sophia Church Square is a very bustling place. This is the place I found cheaper stuff to buy. Due to the vast competition at that place, most of the stuff are reasonably priced, except for food stuff where we can get better price at Wal Mart supermarket.

2009/1/1-4 Shanghai
We went separate ways with my aunt and cousin, while my mom took a flight back to Malaysia on 2nd. I spent 2 more days in Shanghai with my wife and came back to Singapore.

The trip does not sound that exciting as I am a bit tired to write down the details. Too long the journey to write in just few pages. Overall I enjoyed the trip, and hope that it will improve the next time I organize again.


Yakuza Moon (極道な月)

This book is an autobiography of a lady born into a Yakuza Family. Her story of a very harsh and extreme early half life. Gangsters, Drugs, Violence and Sex. All the element to attract curious readers.

Quite touching. And a quick read. I only spend 4 days reading during MRT ride to work to finish this book.

City of Ember

The movie is quite entertaining. More of a kid's fantasy movie. No much of violence and action. Story is that the earth surface was not sustainable any more for human to live due to Nuclear Contamination, hence the Builders have created an Underground City named Ember to hold the humans until the time they can emerge back to earth.
This is also based on a Theory of ancient time where we humans also lived in underground for quite some time due to some catastrophe.
Over all the movie is quite okay, but not great.


Tipping Point, Uprising and Eat Your Heart Out

Finished 3 books in 3 months.

Tipping Point describe how little things with enough followers or momentum, can lead to something significant enough to be noticed and even become dominant. Every thing starts from tiny, and with enough effort to promote it from different side with specific function (trend setters, promoters, advertisers, and the mass public), when it reach the Tipping Point, it just explode. But trends might stay and go, all depends on how to maintain it.

The Uprising is about how USA citizen start to organize to push for their social rights and keep the big corporations and government in check. They put pressure on the Government and Corporation to be responsible towards society.
Quite interesting as we can see, with the power of Internet and modern technology, organizing have been much much easier. This books introduce us to the ongoing Populist (supporter of the rights and power of the people) action in USA.

This book is very related to my line of work. The author is well known and influential food journalist in UK. The book expose on how big food company evolves, and how they operate in order to maximize their profit. And by doing so at the expense of the society, humanity and environment. Especially I am in the food trade, this book really showed me some points from another perspective.