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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Lions are Loose in the Kelana Mall!

Okay, I said I’m going to pay attention more to homework instead of blogging but it’s really hard to concerntrate on lines of code when there’s a freaking tum-tum-chang noise just next door to school.

Between 15 minutes later and on my fifth time my error-filled program refused to work (how the hell do I change this Java application into Java applet?!), I decided to call it quits, pack my bags and save this problem for another day (preferably a day when I didn’t forget to bring my textbook).

Like rats to the Pipe Piper’s music, I followed the horde to investigate the not-so-mysterious music of drums and cymbals.

The interior of Kelana Mall is pretty big for such a small place.

Kelana Mall isn’t really a packed place. Most of the store lots are still as closed as sea clams (apt description, I must say) and so any noise within the building is pretty much applified by echoes.

And at this time of the year, where there is drums and cymbals... There’s a troop of lion dancers. A least I think they’re lion dancers. I can never tell the difference between a lion and dragon get-up (sorry me). So I’m going to refer to them as lion dancers because they look so golden (heh...).

A parent pointing out the lions on the second floor to his kid.

Musicians (is that what they’re called?) banging on the drums. They take turns when one of the gets tired - somehow they have to keep the beat going.

Ooo, the lion and his escorts.

So apparently some property development company had just opened a branch in Kelana Mall. Chinese company of course. I think sending for the lion dancers is a form of blessing? Prosperity? Whatever it means, it sure beats the hell of sitting down at the PC Lab and working out programming.

The troop had started on the entrance of the Kelana Mall and worked their vigour right up to the front entrance, ground floor, of the new office building. Then they went up to the second floor and hang around that entrance too.

Both lions display their strength.

What’s this? An citrus offering?

Don’t mind if we help ourselves.

I’ve never seen a lion dance up close before. Oh, I had been present during a few (and once on an opening ceremony my dad MC’d for) but never by myself. So things time without having family members to watch out for (my lil’ bro usually hates the noise), I was able to capture the team in action to its finish.

It was quite noisy was my first impression but I eventually got used to it and managed to stand closer and closer to take shots. Of couse, half of my mind was asking me why the heck am I getting so near to a ceremony that have no affiliation with me, either educational or recreational.

Simply put, I wouldn’t miss a chance to see something different from my norm.

While one lion was busy with the fruits, his buddy chased after innocent bystanders with mandrin oranges.

The oranges and the pamelo had been cut and was served to the branch manager.

The procession concluded when the lion had eaten his veggie-on-a-string.

I must say it was pretty facinating to watch. I was so scared of getting mobbed by the lion that I missed my chance at getting my own mandrin oranges. Damn, it would have been a great picture shot.

I didn’t stick around to see the very end of lion dance; I was there for about half-an-hour at least. When I looked behind me, I wasn’t looking at the lions (which were invited inside the office) but rather, I saw the people watching the dance.

Like me, they too were awed. Who says there’s prejudice amongst races?

The appreciative audience. And these are only on the ground floor!

When a Blogger Looks for Puns...

: Hi! It’s us.
: And us.
: Which makes both of one to make a whole me.
: So it’s just me.
: And me.
: To the point, Quickening can’t come to the blog right now.
: Actually she can but she doesn’t want to think too much.
: So instead of our regularly sceduled 250+ word post-,
: I’m - we're - both of me - is just going to enter some nonsensical nonsense since none had sense save we.
: Don’t cut me off.
: I didn’t.
: Yes you did, I was going to say all that-,
: But I said them for you.
: You cut me off again!
: Did not!
: You always cut me off!
: So what if I did? We share one head anyway.
: You occupy too much space. I barely have room to think.
: That’s not true. I don’t think so.
: You don’t think, alright.
: Why you lil’ piece of-

*Fights like angel-devil they are. But they both like punts. Here are some pretty interesting ones the English language plays around with.*

I wondered why the baseball was getting bigger. Then it hit me.

Police were called to a day care where a three-year-old was resisting a rest.

Did you hear about the guy whose whole left side was cut off? He's all right now.

The roundest knight at King Arthur's round table was Sir Cumference.

The butcher backed up into the meat grinder and got a little behind in his work.

To write with a broken pencil is pointless.

When fish are in schools they sometimes take debate.

The short fortune teller who escaped from prison was a small medium at large.

A thief who stole a calendar got twelve months.

A thief fell and broke his leg in wet cement. He became a hardened criminal.

Thieves who steal corn from a garden could be charged with stalking.

We'll never run out of math teachers because they always multiply.

When the smog lifts in Los Angeles, U.C.L.A.

The math professor went crazy with the blackboard. He did a number on it.

The professor discovered that her theory of earthquakes was on shaky ground.

The dead batteries were given out free of charge.

If you take a laptop computer for a run you could jog your memory.

A dentist and a manicurist fought tooth and nail.

A bicycle can't stand alone; it is two tired.

A will is a dead giveaway.

Time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana.

A backward poet writes inverse.

In a democracy it's your vote that counts; in feudalism, it's your Count that votes.

A chicken crossing the road: poultry in motion.

If you don't pay your exorcist you can get repossessed.

With her marriage she got a new name and a dress.

Show me a piano falling down a mine shaft and I'll show you A-flat miner.

When a clock is hungry it goes back four seconds.

The guy who fell onto an upholstery machine was fully recovered.

A grenade fell onto a kitchen floor in France, resulted in Linoleum Blownapart.

You are stuck with your debt if you can't budge it.

Local Area Network in Australia: The LAN down under.

He broke into song because he couldn't find the key.

A calendar's days are numbered.

A lot of money is tainted: 'Taint yours, and 'taint mine.

A boiled egg is hard to beat.

He had a photographic memory which was never developed.

A plateau is a high form of flattery.

Those who get too big for their britches will be exposed in the end.

When you've seen one shopping center you've seen a mall.

If you jump off a Paris bridge, you are in Seine.

When she saw her first strands of gray hair, she thought she'd dye.

Bakers trade bread recipes on a knead to know basis.

Santa's helpers are subordinate clauses.

Acupuncture: a jab well done.

: Right! That’s about it.
: And remember...!

What you do today, might burn your ass tomorrow.

Recipe: Breakfast Pepper Mix

Haha, this one is especially for Raising Mercury requesting healthy recipes. My family isn’t really a super-duper health concerned family other than always keeping our sugar intake to absolute minimum (family history has occasional diabetes), like tea with no sugar.

Although this recipe frys the food, I still say it’s healthy because there’s a lot of ingredients; the balance of veggies, meat and carbo. Mak only makes these in a huge batch in the morning so she could eat it again by noon (unless big brother Arsenal drops by, then the Pepper Mix is gone before mid-morning).

I don’t have the step-by-step photos, mainly because I wasn’t around when Mak cook this (too lazy to get out of bed) but as all you need is a wok and a large pepper grinder, it’ll be cool.

Pepper Mix.

Some whole grain bread slices, 4 at least.
Potatoes, thickly sliced.
Carrots, sliced.
Broccoli, chopped.
Japanese cucumber, sliced (optional).
Onions, chopped.
Canned button mushrooms, sliced OR soaked shiitake mushrooms, sliced (optional).
Hot dogs
At least 2 burger patties (optional).
Lots and lots of grinded pepper.

1. First up, boil the hot dogs until it’s soft and meaty, then slice them. Fry the burger patties on a pan (I used Ramly brand) until they’re half-cooked, then add in the sliced hot dogs. Fry them together until they’re done (frying the hot dogs gives it a grilled taste).

2. If you don’t want to use meat, use mushrooms! Slice some canned button mushroom or some shiitake mushroom (after it’s been soaked long enough to turn soft) and fry them in cooking oil.

*Note: Mak usually use meat or mushrooms as an excuse to reduce adding salt, or not add salt at all. You can still use both meat and mushrooms but it’ll be very, very filling (Ayah complains it’s Mak’s fault that he’s fat).*

3. Remove the meats/mushrooms from the pan and put them in a serving bowl. If you’re cooking burger patties, cut them into smaller pieces. Now fry the potatoes until it’s cooked. Poke it with a fork to see how soft you want it to be.

4. Remove the potatoes and also add them into the serving bowl. Now fry the carrots slices and chopped broccoli until, yes, soft and juicy. Occasionally, Mak often adds sliced Japanese cucumber into the frying veggies for more vitamins.

5. Once veggies done, that too goes into the serving bowl. Now you can fry the onions. To add a bit of spicy-ness, chop a bit of fresh chilli and fry them with the onions.

Note: If you’re wondering why all this stuff had to be fried seperately, it’s because the potatoes cook longer than the onions and the veggies don’t fry well if the heat is too high. Frying everything at once also takes longer to cook.*

6. For the last bit, toast the whole grain bread slices and then cut them into squares. Mix in all the cooked ingredients by tossing them like salad with a healthy dose of pepper. It helps if you had pounded the peppercorns in a pestle and mortar first.

7. Add an easy spray of oil and best served hot. It still taste good after it cooled, which you can eat it as a snack throughout the day.

This recipe was made soon after BabyNabil got over his teething and wanted to bite into everything. We can’t let him eat our too-long-french fries or thick daging masak merah so the Breakfast Pepper Mix was a hit because of the bite-sized pieces.

However, there is this mysterious phenomenon, but maybe it’s only in my house. Take note though. If you cook this with the meats and left the food on the open table, the meats tend to disappear to a smaller amount from time to time.

Either cooking this creates a black hole in the serving bowl, or somebody kept popping food into his mouth with his fingers when no one is looking. Maybe I better ask big brother Arsenal as this happens most often when he’s home.

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