Monday, December 29, 2008

a new bicycle

this has to be one of the most wuliao posts i ever put up this year. but then the year is ending, nothing better 2 do, n wat r blogs for but for recording every trivial detail in our life in the hope that, in retrospect they might juz reveal some great hidden truth about our inner selves....eheh


for over a year n a half, since coming here, i had been putting up wif a lousy piece of junk they call a bicycle. it rusts like nobody's business, needs 2 b fed air into its tyres every 2 weeks or so, n is so notoriously unstable dat if going at a fair speed i need 2 actually come to a near complete stop b4 making a 90 degree turn. wat else. its lamp started flickering 3 months ago n gave out completely last month so i had been riding in the dark (since it gets dark at 5pm here nowadays) whenever i come back frm uni....not 2 mention the fair number of times its suspicious (read: cheap-looking) profile plus lack of functional lamp has caused me 2 b stopped by the ubiquitous traffic policemen 4 'routine checking'. around 2 weeks ago its basket suddenly started ripping down the side n d last time i saw it one side of the basket had almost completely came off. wif the high service costs in japan, it wud probably cost more than the bike itself to hv 2 put back into shape.

oh yea, forgot to mention, it threw me off once, resulting in the loss of 1 pair of jeans (i had 2 pairs at dat time, which meant i went around for almost 2 weeks wearing the same pair). or mebbe i shud blame the slopes for that.

so anyway, i wasnt particularly fazed when i left it at d bicycle park at kita-senri, the nearest train station, n came back 2 find it gone....along wif the other 20+ bikes dat were not inserted into the parking lot's bicycle locks properly. prob management had them all moved 2 some remote location 4 not making use of their locking facilities (which cost 150 yen per lock; tho i wasnt there more than the minimum 2 hrs so i cud hv got off free). if my experiences in tokyo were anything 2 learn frm, it is dat i'll prob hv 2 pay like 1000 yen to get my junky old bike back. so, sayonara bike.... (n thanks, kita-senri management, for taking the problem of bike disposal off my hands :P)

so i went for bout 2 or 3 days without a bike n then went to kohnan yesterday lookin 4 a new one. n the very SAME model i had (by a company called southernport..warning: dont buy any bike frm them) dat cost 9800 yen when i bought it, is now 12800 yen! about inflation....n shudnt the price hv gone down after the model has aged for nearly 2 years? but anyway i learnt my lesson n picked up another one. the cheapest bike without gears was 8800 but it was real kiddies-type so i took the 10800 yen....wif insurance that came to 11300 yen (insurance, by the way, is the little label on the bike dat tells police 'come stop this rider n check his name, then match it with the 5-digit number printed on me'). so im set back by 11300 yen for a bike without gears. ah well, gears r largely useless in osaka anyway, wat wif all the slopes... but i cant help having a nagging feeling dat ive replaced one piece of junk wif another...heheh.

new bike, u better serve me well or u'll suffer a worse fate than ur predescessor >.<

well anyway so thats the story of my bike, thanks for listening n come back tml for another of Shao Thing's Boring Life Stories ;)

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Malaysian English and British English

(a list shamelessly lifted off wikipedia)

This is a list of words and phrases that have one meaning in British English and another in Malaysian English

Word / Phrase Malaysian meaning American / British meaning
last time previously on the previous occurrence
a parking lot a parking space, e.g. "That new shopping mall has five hundred parking lots." a parking garage (from US English)
an alphabet a letter of the alphabet, e.g. "The word 'table' has five alphabets." a set of letters used in a language
bungalow A mansion for the rich and/or famous; or a fully detached house, regardless of the number of floors it has. Lately, some housing developers have changed the usage of this word further and we now see terms like "a semi-detached bungalow". A small house or cottage usually having a single storey and sometimes an additional attic storey that is free standing, i.e. not conjoined with another unit.
to follow to accompany, e.g. "Can I follow you?" meaning "Can I come with you?" to go after or behind, e.g. "The police car was following me"
to keep to put away or store, e.g. a parent tells a child "Keep your toys!" to retain as one's own, e.g. "I must decide which to throw away and which to keep."
to revert to get back to someone, e.g. in an email: "I will investigate this and revert to you by tomorrow." to return to a previous edit or state (although this meaning exists in BrE as well.)
to send to take someone somewhere, e.g. "Can you send me to the airport?" to cause something to go somewhere without accompanying it, e.g. "I sent this letter to my grandma."

Most Malaysians are adept at switching from Manglish and Malaysian English, but are sometimes unclear as to the differences between Malaysian English and SABE (Standard American-British English). Awareness of these differences would prevent misunderstandings when dealing with people from different English-speaking backgrounds. This evolution in the use of English follows a worldwide trend and is unlikely to disappear.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

pictures of autumn

autumn is my favourite time of the year. its also the shortest season (at least in japan), only displaying its colors for slightly more than a month at best. AND its that time of the semester when mid-term exams come crashing down on helpless students' heads (especially this particular student). dats y, after 3 autumns in japan, i still havent taken a really decent collection of autumn shots. but anyway, this year i was lucky 2 hv the camera handy a couple of times n managed 2 get these:

will post up some descriptions when i feel inclined to do so...rite now hv 2 get back 2 swotting 4 stupid inorganic chem exam on monday. btw, laz 2 pics were taken wif my shitty mobile phone camera, so they naturally look horrible when enlarged :P