Garfieldhug's Blog

This & That Including What Ails

Whopper & I Don’t Mean Burger King’s Whopper

Our lunch table topic centers on Whopper, Bird’s nephew whom we nicknamed and is quite a celebrity at workplace. Whopper, is now 11 days old and from birth till now is 4kg in weight. Hence weย call him Whopper Baby. According to Bird, at the rate he is growing, he puts on 250g a week and the best part is, he is a good baby, crying only when it is time for milk feed.

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Burger King’s Whopper – Courtesy of Bird

This is how the real McCoy Burger King Whopper looks like – Big & chunky! Whopper the baby had interesting digits. Seen below grasping Bird’s hand, I was intrigued with the wrinkly skin of the fingers. It reminded me of something I have seen before and not on babies as I only observe cartoon or animated characters but where? IMG-20141029-WA0002

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This looks vaguely familiar…..

I pondered and thought – finally I laughed and again the mean sardonic streak arose in me as I said, “hey his hand looks like the character in Lord of The Rings who always utters, My Precious!”

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Lord Of The Rings Gollum – Photo credit to the Creator

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A Close Up Of The Digits!

Isn’t it? What do you think?

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Seeing Kathmandu In The Eyes Of Mr Lawyer

My dearest and kindest friend happens to be a lawyer and for purposes of this blog post, I will address him as Mr Lawyer. (Name is changed to protect the ‘innocent’ LOL! I always like this phrase as it makes me sound pompous like an FBI agent reporting the news) ๐Ÿ˜

Mr Lawyer upped and moved to Australia 2 years ago and I missed his weekly dates with me as I could talk with him on any topic, be it work, family, moans, groans or male relationships gone bad.

I often wondered if men and women could have platonic relationships. With Mr Lawyer, I could. I can catch a movie, shop or have him stand in as my date for any event. No problem!

I started out as a client and ended up being good friends with him.

An avid traveller, Mr Lawyer loves going to the explore the world and perhaps this is his reason for being a singleton. He happened to pass through Singapore and when he does, he would phone me…like ET, he would phone Home ie ME!๐Ÿ˜„

He would be back for two days and he leaves tomorrow. Hurriedly I said yes, let’s meet this evening.

Mr Lawyer’s latest exploit was Kathmandu. He did not strike me as someone who would enjoy that part of the world but he did. He told me that Kathmandu is different from Bhutan in terms of food and architecture.

To his surprise, quite a few Singaporeans have set up home in Kathmandu and successfully opened businesses there and lived life quite happily there.

Though Mr Lawyer did not conquer mountains, nor hills, he enjoyed the food there and feasted on the sights…..I learnt that the origins of Pagodas were not from China but surprisingly, Kathmandu, where Buddhism moved out from.

He explained to me how China changed the pagoda architecture slightly by making the ends of roofs of Pagodas curler than those of Kathmandu.

Over a delightful cheese and ham platter for two with English ham, we both had a delightful time catching up and as usual, Mr Lawyerwould be engrossing my personal legal documents pro bono or giving me legal advice also on pro bono basis.

I will miss Mr Lawyer and though he is a phone call away, it is not quite the same.

I have a good friend in Mr Lawyer and I am blessed โ˜บ๏ธ

 

 

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Observing A Spider – Bird Becomes Kancheong Spider

My muse at work is Bird and of course Chicken.

Bird gives me and the rest of my colleagues in my department much humor as she sometimes say the oddest things. This is accentuated by Chicken poking her too.

Yesterday was a disappointing day for Bird as she spent time doing the work of a colleague universally named, “Long Haired Devil” – seriously, this woman has hair that is so long and not tied up neatly, replicating the Pontianak (Malay female ghost that lives in the banana plant) and is to add, an absolute scatter brain.

Bird being bird, hardly gets annoyed and when she can get irate or irked, it meant that the Long Haired Devil is indeed a problem. We all empathised with Bird.

Here is how the story went…..

Bird requested an Excel spread sheet of names of the Long Haired Devil’s unit so that I could conduct lessons.ย  Bird received the spread sheet and found it crappy. Basically, it made no sense.

After confirming with the Long Haired Devil the names of the people – close to 120 pax, Bird did a clean up and presented a spreadsheet that made sense and met my standard of approval. Bird sends it back to Long Haired Devil and the ghost replies, “oooh so pretttyyy!!” – Bird thought this was the end of that piece of work.

Few minutes later, she receives another call to say, “oooh you not so pretttyyy!” – apparently the ghost did not confirm the names of people available for the course and she re-jigged the spreadsheet which meant that Bird had to re-do all over again and to top it off, ghost told her she is no longer pretty!

Bird was irked and said, “it is the spreadsheet that is not pretttyyy lah! I am preeettty!”

Chicken could not hold back her laughter and said to Bird, “Wah you Kancheong Bird Spider today!” [Kancheong is a dialect word meaning “highly excitable”] and Chicken is right as I realised that indeed when I see spiders, they are always in an agitated state when seen!

Bird said, “yeeeee!! So gross!! I hate spiders and I don’t wish to be considered like a spider!”

Ok lah Bird, we will stop calling you kancheong spider today!!!

 

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My Mindless Job Opportunity Went Out The Window!

Good grief! The road people are tearing down the Esso gas station located a stone throw away from my pigeon hole!

I was sad as I have been eyeing this Esso gas station that was situated behind a high school and was generally only busy in the school hours, selling snacks, drinks, pastriesย and or anything else that was sinfully decadent and not provided for in the school canteen.

School administrators tend to think that what tastes bad is good for health and what tastes good is bad for health!

It seems fizzy colas, potato chips or crisps or anything fried or comes in a blister pack is a strict no-no for dietary requirements and so the good Christian school that is located within the zone where the Esso station is, reaps rewards from brisk sales. Hordes of students would line up for their binge spree!

Yes, I do my recce and observe consumerism at its worst! I would be silly to opt for this shift as I have to be busy baking pastries and cashering! Last time I checked, I ain’t having 8 hands/legs like the octopus or Hindu God Vishnu with extra hands nor Goddessย Guanyin (Godess of Mercy) ๐Ÿ˜‰

But after that, few cars would visit this station as it on the exit of the freeway, we call Pan Island Expressway which spells PIE (but I assure you, there are no pies…much less pork pies, shepherd’s pies or mince pies can be found).

Only cars taking this slip road out to this area can get to access this gas station and top up fuel or gas.

This suited me fine as it meant low traffic for the evening hours and this was my mindless dream job that paid minimum wage when I feel like retiring in the future.

It meant, I would apply for the midnight shift and bring my best magazines, comics or novels and read in the nights, catch forty winks, serve one or two customers and ok…top up some shelves and pretty much that was it!

A dream job I thought!

But reality sucks and it is now being bulldozed, probably for some housing development.

I should have been smarter to squash my dreams of this mindless job earlier as the sums were quite clear. Human traffic for sales only exist during the school hours, which meant during weekends, no sales. Term breaks, no sales.

The owner or franchisee of this station must have decided that it was not viable to continue and close shop.

Still it was nice to dream of this potential mindless job as it was walking distance for me to commute to and work and return home to probably seek another mindless job since I am paid to sleep at the gas station! LOL!

Great exercise, minimum wage, allows me to catch up on reading….sigh…it has now ended! My nightmare then begins…..in search of another mindless retirement job!

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Bird’s Latest Addition To The Family – A Whopper Of A Nephew!

Bird was moaning last week that her sister has yet to give birth and that the future nephew was supposed to be born and was overdue by a week! “Induce”, I said…..”just induce”

Over the weekend, I received a message that finally, the much awaited for nephew was decided to be induced and was delivered into this cold and cruel world (famous sayings of my then boyfriend – he was the evilest of mankind, he claimed LOL)

I call it a Whopper of A Nephew – it weighed 3.45 kg!

This is one oversized baby I said….Yeah, I know I am not too kind in the baby department but I dislike children as they are a pain, they poop and they pee and they are forever a liability to parents (never an investment as there is no guaranteed profits and there is no refund policy!) – stuck for life. So long as a parent breathes, the child is forever a child to the parent even though the darn child may be in their 50s and the parent is in their 80s!

I was even meaner when I said to Bird, “What a huge piece of meat!” – Bird is used to my sarcasm on the topic of babies and told me that yes, it is a big baby! LOL!

Selfish me then said, “Yaay….this means Garfield (my darlink baby…psycho ME emerges here) has new clothes!”

Yup, no way Jose this Whopper would be wearing those clothes for ages 0-3 months!

Bird laughed and immediately told me that she would be collecting those baby clothes for my darlink BB Garfield! Bird indulges in my love of the silly inanimate fur ball of mine ๐Ÿ˜‰

This week, Bird complains that her arms ache! She is asking for more of my sarcasm I say!

I gave it my best retort! “Well, one would be to carry that Whopper! 3.45kg….almost a 5kg sack of rice” I whooped a reply as indeed Thai rice are pre-packed in supermarket shelves at 5kg a bag!

Bird indulges me and replied, “Erm…Whopper is now 4.75 kg!” – In Singlish I say, “Wah Lao! [it means OMG) what have you guys been feeding Whopper?!”

Bird is pseudo MOM to the Whopper and another nephew and niece all from the same sister.

Hmm, it seems her sister is only the breeding machine…her job description is to have sex, make babies, incubate and grow the baby, pop it into this world (did I mention cold and cruel world) and abandon it to her mom and sister.

Her sister’s second marriage and Whopper is son of Husband # 2.

I do empathise with Bird as she ends up with a lot of responsibilities, which includes tutoring and minding the nephews and niece with her mom.

Bird said that those kids often with the slip of the tongue call her “Mom” –

Hence my tagline…..”cold and cruel world….”

Amazing how irresponsible her sister is in terms of motherhood. Still it is amazing that her sister’s puny little frame could deliver naturally Whopper!

All I can say is, “Bird…congrats on your arrival or should I say Look what the Stork brought in” and of course, “remember to pass me those baby clothes that do not fit Whopper!” ๐Ÿ˜€

Bird will make a good aunt and she literally cares for these young ones. At least the children may have a pseudo mom as their maternal mom is just a name on the birth certificate as I am pretty sure her sister will be out pubbing and clubbing soon!

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Funny Bone…Wherefore Art Thou Thy Funny Bone?

My funny bone has taken leave…gosh, it has vanished like vapour into thin air!

No amount of radiologic equipment can trace this darn funny bone within this carcass of mine….quite unsure if it is medically certifiable that I even had a funny bone in the first place.

Gone are the laughter, hilarity and chuckles (mind you, not that evil, Chucky character! LOL) as I struggle with the realities of life.

Sigh….the A & E room at the hospital seems to be my favourite location between 7pm and 9pm and I firmly told the Emergency Doctor there that, this will be the last time I will be meeting him at A &E…as if like Secret Squirrel, I whispered, “We gotta stop meeting like this….” then my funny bone appeared, out of no where, it reared its funny head and said, “Let’s meet over coffee…it is better that way”

When managing elders, I become the Parent In Charge! All of a sudden, I am the so called Charles In Charge! Like Scott Baio who played the character Charles in this particular hit TV sitcom I much enjoyed, I become a pompous ass!

If only elders will move along to consult the doctor when they feel unwell, then this Parent In Charge need not be charging home after 12 hours of slavery on the docks to be ranting and raving like a lunatic to get them to A & E.

Can I officially give up?! Erm, nope as I have to play referee too during their bouts of word wrestling! “Co-exist”, ย I yelled! Hearing loss, I have to raise my voice. It takes energy to raise a full decibel and roar like Leo, the Lion. I should be a zoo keeper really, at least I can control those animals and stick needles into them or force feed them when these animals in the kraal or enclosure is ill!

Thankfully, my kindly dear doctor is always available for me on mobile phone. I am ever so grateful for smart or text messaging as they serve me very well during such moments of “exciting” moments – such dramas…I can actually write the next pilot episode of PARENT IN CHARGE and I ain’t even married and I do not have live children! All myย  “kids” are inanimate furry Garfield stuffed toys – the proud creation by Jim Davis that I absolutely love and hug to bits! They do not hurt, poo or pee and no feeding required. They stay exactly as you leave them, in a heap, squooshed or face down (though I always envisage crib death!!)

I hope the two seniors I have at home gets well soon…it is tough growing old but it is even tougher acting like a parent to real parents who becomes a child as they age. If my memory serves me right ( and I cannot confirm here really as anaesthesia has literally robbed a lot of my childhood memories) I was a good child, obedient and always read books in a corner following the adage that “kids should be seen and not heard” ๐Ÿ˜€

I will grow old and crotchety one day….when I do, I have no one to yell at me nor help poke me along to the A & E….maybe there will be a kind pseudo PARENT IN CHARGE by then who will mosey me along to the A & E when I need to be pushed ๐Ÿ˜‰

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Bidding Farewell To Good Part Time Help

Ms China is leaving for home first week of November. This is my second parting with her. The first was 6 years ago when she left after her work contract ended.

She went home to her farm house with cement flooring and mud walls.

Ms China is a good part time help! Precious to me and irreplaceable as she took care of cleaning details. I appreciated her house help always as she knows exactly what I need and chores to be done.

Always with a smile, Ms China was obliging and would sympathize with my medical condition to understand my needs and wants in housekeeping areas.

I love clean toilets, cleaned to the standards of hospitals and she does that for me.

Out to make a better living in my little red dot, she works hard to save and buy a house for her family. She scrimps and saves but is rather generous in her treatment of me. Sparing no expense, she would hunt down Garfield items for me and bring with her whenever she went home.

This time, she is leaving rather quickly as she faced work pressures, given her command of the English language frightens her into fearing or the phobia of being able to do her job as a shipping clerk. She was devastated having to make this difficult decision.

I admire her responsibilities as she faced up to her phobia, realizing that if she shipped stuff to wrong places, she could cause the company she works for, great issues.

Good jobs are hard to come by and she knows her hardship when she goes home as pay is lesser. Her dream of owning a home is then further.

As I bid her farewell, I felt a lump in my throat as she is a good friend. I told her to strive to come back and work. With the foreign income earned, her dream of owning a home becomes nearer.

Thank goodness for WeChat as it means I can still keep her friendship, albeit she in China and me in my little red dot.

I hope she saves enough to buy a two bedroom apartment for her family comprising husband and ison with parents in law.

In my little red dot, I take clean running water gushing out from taps for granted. With the push of a lever, my toilets are flushed. No pooping into pits in an out house away from the house. No night soil tipping as they say.

I need out have to forage for sticks or logs to cook or keep warm during winters.

I felt for Ms China and admire her tenacity and will to have a better life, even if it means living in quarters for 9 to a room!

 

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Dilmah Earl Grey In Silk Bags

I am into Hoity Toity tea drinking or should I say, tea slurping! ๐Ÿ˜

To bohemians like me, tea is tea and regardless it comes in normal tea bags or silk bags, ’tis tea!

But my brother would frown and in puckered tones, tell me, ” don’t waste time and drink tea only in silk bags!” – aaah lifestyle of the rich and famous….to me, a humble cup of tea was just tea with no frills.

He shoved a box of 50 sachets to me and urged me to try. Today, I boiled a kettle of water and could remember his strong advice to let water cool a little before infusing the tea bag. Good tea, it seems, must only be drunk at 80 odd degrees and not at boiling point.

Dilmah has good brand of teas and my favorite blends are usually English Breakfast and Earl Grey. Lipton has the Lady Early Grey but I prefer just Earl Grey.

Truth be told, my brother was indeed correct. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Tea bags made out of silk bags tasted better.

He poohed poohed at the 100s tea bags made with paper that I use to buy off supermarket shelves for Lipton and realized that he was indeed correct in that those tea bags made out of paper like material contained tea dust and not tea leaves.

He criticized the other brand, Boh tea, saying that is a class grade lower than Lipton. “Boh is absolutely tea dust” he muttered….”left overs” and told me to put it back.

The Earl Grey I had this morning had piquant flavors and hints of fine aromas of Earl Grey. Indeed the silk bags that contained the tea leaves were gorgeous to drink when brewed into tea.

I had wanted to reuse the bag and infuse another Cuppa tea but my brother frowned again as he tut tutted away saying that good tea is brewed once and discarded.

I felt it was a waste but to him, it was the proper way of drinking tea.

Ahh well, I ain’t of upper class breeding as they say, I am realistic and drink tea in the normal way. My brother has always had a discerning palate and enjoy good food and wine.

But, by George (as the Brits would say), he was absolutely correct. ๐Ÿ˜

Dilmah tea bags made out of silk indeed had a refined tea taste and brought out a great cup of tea that I much enjoyed.

I am off for another Cuppa…..care to join me ๐Ÿ˜„

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Getting Groceries & Chatting With Serious Shoppers

Yesterday was a marathon day for me that left me pretty much in physical pain as I was driving my carcass to limits beyond endurance akin to vertical challenges or Iron Man sort of events๐Ÿ˜ซ

I had to get groceries….it was time to stock up on pork and fish from Cold Storage ( the Safeway or Coles types of Supermarket chains) and I like going there as it is a huge place with fresh produce, that I could select what I see.

With more than 50 aisles of groceries and a huge fish and meats section, I always recognize the same people who would serve my fastidious approach to selecting produce and having them pack it for me, ready to be shoved into the fridge when home.

All this comes at a premium to me as I could shop at the cheaper supermarket called NTUC FairPrice but I hate the way they butcher or massacre the fish I select. Often times, I end up with mush for fish and they looked quite ‘squooshed’ limpid on a head and what’s left of the bony frame.

I like Cold Storage as their butchers or fish cleaning crew actually respect the produce they handle and return me fish looking like a fish, all smiley and not ‘squooshed’ looking like a fish hit by Ebola and had hacked up their last breath! ๐Ÿ˜œ

I could tell them to pack mince pork in 100gm portions or whatever way to slice belly pork and others.

I had an American standing behind me in line and I felt sorry for him as I was buying kilos of everything and this requires time for them to slice ribs from racks to individual ribs.

I told him to go first and he picked up beef rounds for BBQ and judging from his trolley filled items, I struck up a chatter with him and commented he must be a great chef! Usually women would be at the supermarketing chores but here he was selecting meats and condiments.

Amicably he started to teach me how to flash fry those beef rounds, searing 3 minutes on one side and 2 minutes on the other side for a perfect steak!

Nice to meet a friendly shopper and I shared with him that all I was good at was when the water boils in a pot, I would toss in pork. Bring it to a boil and throw in veggies! That is ME, my style of cooking!๐Ÿ˜

He laughed and said, “seems impossible as I was buying up a lot of pork” – inwardly I secretly laughed, I was helping mummy with her groceries ๐Ÿ˜‰

I love grocery shopping as I can stock up on 2 of everything…my hang up I guess ๐Ÿ˜

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Junk, Clutter Or Hoarding

I am not a hoarder but sigh, I seem to have so much clutter that some may be deemed junk by me whilst others deem a treasure.

I can imagine self as an old bag lady….๐Ÿ˜ฑGawd….like those in the movies, wrapped in a shawl and walking a supermarket trolley with all my treasures!

I love reading and these days with so much on the Internet, I hardly need to buy books in hard print or E books.

My old collection of books has been given away and what is left is I fear too old to be given away else the recipient may think I am insulting them. ๐Ÿ˜ฅ

Still, I was told that there may be value in old books but given that I am not antiquated, I believe my books are not worth much ๐Ÿ˜Š

I must be the least Eco friendly person as I throw stuff….stuff that does not fit goodwill or any person needing it as things I like are pretty much for self use, unless there is another odd one out there who would like my junk ๐Ÿ˜‰

These days, to me, less is more and so I started tossing out plates, flatware that does not go beyond me, myself and I! HA! If I had dinner guests, it will have to be pizza or stuff one eats out of paper plates! Or better yet, eat out! Dine in style! Since I am an accidental chef, I don’t see self whipping up a storm anytime soon.

Besides, the only edible food I can serve anyone with some pride are my sandwiches! ๐Ÿ˜

I cannot possibly wrong in this area. 2 slabs of toast, stuff in between and lettuce, alfalfa sprouts, tomatoes or bell peppers….and the related spreads…voila! A meal as if out of Subway Deli๐Ÿ˜ƒ

Just had my entire apartment’s drapes or curtains replaced with blinds and curtains and the curtain people asked me if I wanted to keep the old curtains! I asked whatever for as I feared he would say, “erm…you look the sort to hoard…” Heaven’s forbid!

I told him he would do me a big favor to take it off my hands and junk it. He explained that he had to ask as usually owners would snap at him to leave it as they want it. Hmm….guess there are genuine hoarders out there for old curtains or maybe they can turn it into dollars selling it to the rag and bone man for recycling into quilts…heard this from my bro in Hong Kong that the unused or discarded fabrics were pulped and shredded to fill quilts! Great recycling efforts!

Yes, I can safely say that I am not a hoarder but I cannot bear to throw stuff out that seems like useful or may be of use to me some time in the not so distant future ๐Ÿ˜

Let’s face it, all other stuff I can throw but not my previous collection of Garfield stuff toys made by Paws Inc and created by Jim Davis…๐Ÿ˜

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