Monthly Archives: November 2009

Wicked Food

For a long time, Chili’s has stopped serving the “deadly” Chili’s Cheese Fries. So “deadly” but extremely delicious. But eating them once in a while is okay, I guess. So yesterday after checking out Harvey Norman’s exhibition in KLCC, we went to the Chili’s there, which is perpetually packed, and to my surprise, the Cheese Fries is back! Ordered it without a blink. Wow…. slurrrrp…. heavenly.

It will be a nice dish to serve in parties I guess and when my new home is ready and if there is a party, I will try to make this deadly but delicious dish for my guests. It’s not too hard to make. Just deep fry some fries in palm oil so that it is crispy and golden. Then put a, ahem, thick layer of cheddar cheese in between the crispy golden fries. Then put them in the oven so that the cheese will melt into the fries.

Next, get a small portion of minced beef and stir fry them in a normal way. Take the cheese fries from the oven and lay some minced beef and jalapenos on top of it.

You will need some sour cream sauce to dip the fries too. That is easily made with some sour cream, some buttermilk, mayonnaise, minced onion and garlic, some herbs and whatever else you want to put in it to suit your taste.

Now the whole thing is ready. Get a fork, dive into the fries, make sure you get some cheese sticking to it, some minced beef sticking to it, and dip the whole thing into the sour cream sauce and put the whole thing in your mouth.

It is perhaps one of the most heavenly (or hellish, depends on how you look at it) thing mankind can ever put into his/her mouth. Woohoo!

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Poor Kitten

Poor Kitten
Born to the world which itself didn’t ask,
Or maybe its karma did.

Little big eyes darting left and right,
Searching for food, avoiding danger,
or perhaps wondering the purpose of its existence.
Not. Just searching for food, looking out for danger.
No time to be an existentialist!

Poor Akila,
In the streets of Hyderabad,
Didn’t ask to be born, probably just a by-product,
of some adult indulgences.

Little big eyes darting left and right,
Searching for food, avoiding danger,
and came she knocked on the Tata Aria window;
shaking her little head left and right, she pleaded;
“Saheb, bread please”

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Chronicle of a Post Foretold

As per my earlier post, I said that I will post about Godard’s PIERROT LE FOU and I will. However, as anyone who has some idea of Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s (or better known as Gabo) work, will notice from the title of this post that I am about to write something about his CHRONICLE OF A DEATH FORETOLD.

It is a short novel about the death of a guy who is foretold, i.e. the whole town knows that he is going to be killed, when and where he is going to be killed and why he is to be killed. However, somehow, no one does anything about it and he indeed was killed in a most gruesome way, without a clue himself why he has to suffer such a fate. In fact, it is almost bewildering why it is that the whole town knows that he is going to die but this news seem to escape him.

The reason for his murder is simple; the twin brother of a girl wants to redeem the family and their sister’s honour because the sister was returned home by her new husband because he found out the night itself that she is not a virgin. The girl was beaten and asked to confess who is the guy who stained her and she named the unfortunate guy. However, no one really believes that he is the guy, which is probably one reason why the guy has a puzzled look when his killers went after him. Who is the real guy who took her virginity? Well, it was left silent in the novel.

In the midst of this storytelling, there are many things that Gabo did that made the story click and enjoyable to read, the details and the occasional mystery and magic that he pumped in. All in all, this is a superb novel and anyone who wishes to have something enjoyable to read over a weekend can pick this book up.

Now about PIERROT LE FOU. Godard. Jean-Luc Godard. What a director he is. This movie was released in 1965, hot in the midst of the French New Wave. This movie reminds me of many movies, although it is of itself very unique. It reminds me, most of all, of BREATHLESS and of BONNIE AND CLYDE. It won’t be a wonder if it actually had some influence on BONNIE AND CLYDE which was released two years after this movie. In those years, movies influence each other as it is apparent that Hollywood movie influenced European movies a whole lot, and in fact inspired the European filmmakers a big deal. It is no surprise to see many Hollywood references in European movies and if one has seen THE DREAMERS, one will also have an appreciation on the fireworks that Hollywood had on European, particularly French cinema.

If anything, PIERROT LE FOU is made such a good movie by its actors, both Jean-Paul Belmondo whose excellent performance we have also seen in BREATHLESS and Anna Karina whom we have seen in many movies, especially BAND OF OUTSIDERS and MY LIFE TO LIVE, one of my favourite Godard movies.

PIERROT LE FOU is about a guy and his so-called girlfriend, who is quite sick of a boring life and seeks adventure. They are free spirits and could not stand Jules Vernes for long and had to go for a gangster movie once in a while. The ending is tragic but is befitting. The film techniques is, ermmm, technical, employing strong primary colours, uses of cuts, repetitive dialogue, looking at the camera and talking to the audience (not as subtle as the final scene in Truffaut’s 400 BLOWS but is also very effective), etc. On the latter, i.e. looking at the audience, it is somehow effective, for example, in a scene, Belmondo is looking at the camera and talking and Karina asked him what he is doing and the effect is that they are conscious of an audience watching them and the audience is made conscious that the actors on the screen knows that someone is watching them and listening to what they are saying. This is especially so when they are on the run from the law.

PIERROT LE FOU is really a celebration of cinema. One feels happy after watching the movie, and as Gabo felt after reading Kafka’s THE METAMORPHOSIS where he suddenly realized that novels can be written in that way, after watching PIERROT LE FOU, one also realizes that “oh, movies can also be made like this”.

A gem and masterpiece indeed.

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Ultimate Pair-Go

Okay, the next post will be a post about Godard’s PIERROT LE FOU but for this post, since two of our players Suzzane and Jimmy is now in Japan for the International Pair Go Tournament, I would like to comment on a book that I recently read, THE GO CONSULTANTS.

It is a book about a game whereby Go Seigen and Kitani are one team and Segoe Kensaku and Suzuki Tamejiro another. It was thought to be a great pairing up as both Go Seigen and Kitani are popular for their New Fuseki theory while the two older masters are in the conventional camp, although Suzuki is actually Kitani’s teacher and Segoe was said to be Go Seigen’s teacher (but it was not officially mentioned).

The idea is that both players on each side of the game can adjourn anytime during the game and go to another room to consult each other and in that room, there is a reporter waiting to record their conversations and analysis. This way, we know exactly what they are thinking.

I would dare say that everything that one needs to know how to play Go well is in this book. There is an analysis on every aspect of the game, from Opening moves to whole board joseki consideration, to Go strategic concepts such as thickness, influence, strength and weakness of groups, efficiency, aji, miai, tesuji, yose, positional judgment etc. etc.

The book is about 150 pages and that is only for ONE game alone. Just imagine that kind of analysis that is in the book. This is a wonderful book indeed.

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Other Going-Ons

Perhaps it is true that I am blogging too much about Go, which of course is not a bad thing, but the fact is that for a Jack of All Trades like myself, there are other things that is happening that I would also like to talk about or update. My geeky friend (as I have called her since the first time I wrote on this blog) who is now in Hong Kong already complained that this blog of mine is becoming a blog exclusively about Go! Where did all the movies go? That is true.

Anyways, for a fact, I have not spent time exclusively on Go, which explains why I am still so bad at that game. Perhaps a short update on recent activities is due?

Non-Go related book that I am currently reading:

Gabriel Garcia Marquez: A Life by Gerald Martin.

I have been quite a fan of Gabo (as he is affectionately called) and I wonder who wouldn’t if they have spent some time reading such works as ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF SOLITUDE and LOVE IN THE TIME OF CHOLERA.

On his last visit to Malaysia, my dear friend Dr. Sudah whom I refer to as the Sexy Doctor or the Mahler lookalike (here is his blog:The Physician Anthropologist), was reading the aforesaid book and I was intrigued. Luckily I found the book in MPH which was a surprise after looking high and low in Kinokuniya and Borders to no avail.

Gabo’s story is very inspiring, a rags to riches story and I am currently at almost half of the book and is enjoying it very much. The opening chapter on the family genealogy can be quite confusing but should not be something that anyone who has read ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF SOLITUDE cannot handle. After the opening chapter, the rest is a breeze and an enjoyable read. At a certain point, I thought I really wanted to be an author like Gabo too.

Movies Watched:

Hayao Miyazaki’s PONYO ON THE CLIFF. Oh my goodness. I have been wanting to watch this for the longest time but alas! it was not shown in Malaysian cinemas. I managed to get a 2-DVD set while in Korea and have watched it. What an amazing piece of art this is. Ponyo is just so cute and adorable, the soundtrack is superb as usual and it is very uplifting. Both my wife and myself felt so much happier after watching this movie.

INGLORIOUS BASTERDS. I have also been waiting for this for the longest time and it did not disappoint. Typical Quentin Tarantino extravaganza of unforgettable scenes and dialog. I was quite worried about Brad Pitt before the movie but after watching it, I felt he is perfect for the role.

POKER KING. Despite being a fan of Texas Hold’em, I do not find this movie to be really good and I felt that the twist at the end of the movie rather lame. However, this is an enjoyable movie and quite entertaining. I like Wong You-nam very much in the movie. I cannot but compare it to ROUNDERS and I find ROUNDERS a better movie, although perhaps on the enjoyment level, POKER KING is at least at par. After the movie, I chatted with my geeky friend over the phone and she highlighted to me the subtleties in the movie, on the state of affairs in Macau and how the industry is wrecking havoc on the economy and such. Anyways, lovers of Hong Kong movie should not miss this movie though.

Well, that’s a few things that I am doing or have just recently done this week that is not Go related.

I am planning to start reading a novel but I can’t decide which one to read. Hmmmm……

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Jeonju, Korea

So I am now back from Jeonju, Korea. It is a very nice town, serene and beautiful. It is a very good blend of the traditional and the modern. I could have lived there. It is also the hometown of Lee Changho, the top Go player who has won more than 20 world titles. Here is my picture with him. I was so fortunate to be able to have a photo with him. I met him in Singapore during the Ing cup but didn’t manage to take any photos, so here it is, one of my missions in Go has been accomplished :)


Photo credit: Billy

Jeanju is a nice blend of the traditional and the modern. On one side of the town we can see very traditional houses but just walk for a while and cross the street, it is a completely fashionable area with lots of teenagers and modern things to feast the senses.


Photo credit: Jayden

One of the dishes that Jeonju is famous for, the Bibimbap:


Photo credit: Xinwen

The Jeonju trip is for the Korea Prime Minister Cup (KPMC) Baduk (Go) Tournament. Here are some pictures:


Photo credit: Xinwen


Photo credit: Jayden

Some friends:


Handy – Indonesia Official


Sharen – Brunei Official


Jayden the superb photographer


Extremely blur guy Xinwen


Our player, the superb Zaid Waqi.

On the last day, we had a simultaneous game with professionals as well as touring. Here is the photo with the cute professional that I played with:

Some photos of the area (all thanks to our superb photographer Jayden.)


The champion from South Korea on the left versus Japan.

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Filed under 4th Korea Prime Minister Cup 2009, Weiqi/Go/Baduk