Archive | March 2009

zuji rocks!


Chan Brothers (brick and mortar travel agent) asked me to make payment at their ticketing office (North Bridge Road) by this evening. The choices given were either (1) Cash payment at North Bridge Road or (2) Credit card payment over the phone with two percent surcharge.

I did my math.

Choice (1): $425 + $20 (Cab fare) = $445
Choice (2): $425 + $8.50 (2% surcharge) = $433.50

I told Yiqian and guess what? She told me to book my tickets from ZUJI (online travel agent) instead. AND. It’s only $405 nett. On the same flight (China Eastern)!

Talk about cost reduction when you bring your business online.

Thanks Yiqian. Opps, Amanda and Eugene, I reckon that you guys would have paid for it already, so I didn’t inform you guys! Haha. But it’s still freaking cheap!

zuji. The world is on sale.

mrt-singaporeJust like the ones in Hong Kong. I like. 



I am so going to Seoul. Thank you Eugene and Amandina for the news! $425 (China Eastern) is all you need to fly to Seoul.

Fook You and Fook Mi (2009)

We had lots of fun at Cat & Chris’s 23rd birthday party!!! For more juicy pictures and extremely entertaining videos (c.f. Classic of Erwin and Bright) please visit my Facebook profile and you’ll see them all there!

More vege please…


Papa bear’s Salad vs. Mama bear’s Salad.

I made this one day. After Amandina’s salad eating craze, I decided I should freaking eat more vege too. But that only lasted 1 day. URGH.

Fish & Co Express


Opps. I’ve eaten them all up before I took any photos.

1 Pasir Ris Close
#01-40B E!Hub at Downtown East

Cheap, no frills and quality fish and chips at Fish & Co. Their student meals (people with student pass but may/may not be student) cost a mere $4.50 and it comes with a fairly decent piece of fish with drinks and (skinny) fries. Yummy. On the down side this is not exactly fast food. When there were no crowds, they took about 5 – 10 mins to serve up their food but with busy crowds they took almost 15-20 mins. Ah, but you will be given warning after you ordered.

Bottom line: I must say, it’s really good for a mere $4.50.

30 years later, when your kids are working on their thesis in NUS Business School, maybe they will see this in one of those dusty books in the Thesis Library. 



First and foremost, I would like to offer my sincerest gratitude to my supervisor, Dr xxx, who supported me throughout my thesis with her invaluable advice, patience and knowledge whilst allowing me the room for development in this tough journey. This thesis would not be made possible without her constant guidance and advice.

I would also like to thank both Professor xxx and Dr xxx for their precious guidance and suggestions throughout this study. I would also like to extend my appreciation to Ms. xxx, Ms. xxx, and Ms. xxx who arranged and prepared for the subject pools.

I would also like to express my deep appreciation to my parents for their unwavering love and support. I also wish to thank my sister, Yirene Tan for her constant encouragement, understanding and prayers. I must also thank my boyfriend, Jason Ng for his continuous thoughtfulness, patience and sacrifices made during this study. I would also like to show my appreciation to all my friends in NUS Business School for their assistance and encouragement and brothers and sisters in S-Word Evangelical Free Church for their prayers.

Last but not least, I would like to thank God for His constant guidance, grace and mercy throughout my life. His guidance and presence made those difficult times more bearable. Thank You Lord, for in You all things are possible!


Tan Si Lin Serene


“Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know”  Jeremiah 33:3 (NIV)

Uniqlo: Japanese’s Giordano is arriving onshore!


I love their tees. But I think their stuffs are more male-biased. Just like the typical Japanese culture. HAHA.

Mr Smiley hearts Coldplay


Coldplay played to 10,000 fans last Monday nite, and Mr Smiley was there to witness the world’s greatest band (cause I say so) rawk the bloody roof down, and cause a massive rush of blood to all our heads (above the waist pls, ppl).

Don’ believe ah? See video lor.  Awesome awesome band, this Coldplay.  

WARNING: Videos may contain unexplainable groupie-esque howls of inexplicable joy. Cringe-worthy singalongs may also be present at certain video intervals. NOT suitable (TOTALLY) for workplace viewing. 



I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel.

6 April 2009, Monday

Thesis submission date.

I asked my Prof for advice. And she said.


Caramel Cafe


Caramel Café
100 Beach Road
#01-50/52 Shaw Towers

Read a lot in 8 Days and Home & Décor about this café. They are apparently famous for their interesting decors with quirky wall designs, unique chairs, cups and all. If I don’t remember wrongly, they are opened by 3 guys who used to work in the creative industry. Half of this café is a café. DUH. The other half is actually a hair salon [Called Hairloom]. We didn’t get to see their hairstylist in action as we were there at 9pm merely for a quick bite. Interesting decors.

Food wise, the coffee that he tried is not great. But the green tea cupcake [they have a nicer name for it but I can’t remember] is surprising good. With just one bite, you can tell it is lovingly crafted by their Pâtissier unlike the typical cupcakes you get from Jiffy or Betty. The service was utterly pleasing as well. The owner took initiative to bring a stool for my bag [Not a Chanel or a Prada] and asked if I would like some plain water to go along with my cupcake and if I wanted it warm or cold. Awwww. A great chill-out and catch-up place with your friends.

A Pure Form of Male Brand Whore [A case of fashion disaster.]

a-living-case-fashion-disaster-a-male-brand-whore_one1I saw this guy on the train one morning and I can’t help but stare. No, he is not good looking, neither is he cute or hunky. He is a living fashion disaster emanating this pure undefined form of male brand whore. I must first clarify that I won’t call myself a fashionista, but you don’t need a fashionista to critic his dressing.

Where should I start? Probably from the obvious. Who on earth carries 2 coin purses? (Ok. Breathe. In. Out) And freaking hang them on himself as though Christmas will come early because of his sacrifices made?! And AND, who on earth will plaster himself with the offensive Louis Vuitton monogram all over like a SPF 50 sunblock lotion?

Second, tell me why anybody would want to wear that plastic-ky shirt over another t-shirt and roll up his shorts at the same time! To make matters worse! Why would any guy wear those satin-ribbons sandals? Ok. Maybe guys are finally revealing their desire for more varied foot wear. BUT STILL…

I am not evil. Not exactly. Cause if I am. I would have taken a photo with his face. AH.

He. He actually heavily gelled up his hair into a Barbie’s Ex-BF Ken like manner and wore this oversized retro plastic spectacle.

Sigh. Enough of ranting. I must say, he is definitely an entertaining character. HAH.

I don’t live in a Slum

On the northern fringe of Singapore, overlooking the slate gray waters of the Johore Strait, the public-housing project where Anthony Fulwood lives (Bukit Panjang) is so far from the city’s affluent expatriate enclaves that cabdrivers are stunned when he announces his address. ” ‘For God’s sake, why do you live there?’ they regularly ask me,” says Fulwood. ” ‘You’re white!’ ” …

… Fulwood isn’t the only Western expatriate to take up residence in the cheaper peripheries of this Southeast Asian city. An English teacher and community volunteer whose duties include helping integrate Westerners into the Bukit Panjang neighborhood, the 30-year-old Englishman sees a small but steadily growing number of Americans, Australians and Europeans in the fluorescent-lit coffee shop where locals often gather after work around cold pitchers of beer. These foreigners are economic refugees of a sort.

– Extracted from “Laid Off in Singapore: Ex-Pats Have to Downsize” by Neel Chowdhury, TIME, March 15, 2009.


They made this part of the island, where I lived for more than half my life, sounds like a slum located at the border of Singapore (or was it Johore?).

Hello. It is still civilization here you know. Ok, even thought that’s not the point of this entire article, I just can’t help but rant about it. HEH.

Updated SbR’s blogroll.

I am an individual with zero discipline and an extremely short attention span, instead of working on my thesis, I’ve decided to go have my dinner, instead of working on my thesis, I’ve decided to watch some random shows on TV, instead of working on my thesis, I am here cleaning up some of the dead blog links that were previously in my blog roll listing. Sigh.

This is for the greater good. For the benefits of my avid readers. I realized new/old readers have a tendency to click the links at the side and very often only to be disappointed when the blogs were dead or had posting dated 2007.

My dear friends who prefer to take a passive/reader role (which was equally awesome!) left their blogs unattended. So, I’ve removed those links in the even t where no new blog post was posted for at least 6 months.
A new category “Random Read” was also added. This allows my reader to read other blogs in the event that my utterly dull lackluster blog becomes unbearable, my readers were extremely bored or when there is a lack of post due to unforeseen writing drought. I clearly need some recommendation of interesting sites under this category. So. If you’ve any good blogsite that deserved to be read by a larger audience, do leave a comment with their links!

So, dear friends -Cat, Colin, Sue Ann, Mike, Tabitha and Valerie – Sorry!

We will welcome new bloggers – Peggy, Cheng Wei, and Titus – to my blogroll.

Our mama told us we can secure a good job after obtaining our degree…

– Not true in our current context. Graduates were not spared either. 

Some old news we kind of already know after meeting friends who graduated last semester at career fairs. They too had the same motive – to secure a job. Now, all they want is a job. Not a career. Depressing.

Grads among worst hit as jobless rate increases By Aaron Low

GRADUATES are hurting the most among the growing pool of jobless Singapore residents battered by the economic crisis. The number of out-of-work degree holders more than doubled last year to 14,800 [THIS NUMBER HAS NOT TAKE US INTO ACCOUNT] in December, from 6,200 a year earlier.

They joined an expanding group of unemployed residents – comprising Singaporeans and permanent residents – whose numbers rose from 56,100 in September to 69,900 in December last year.

– The Straits Times, Mar 17, 2009

A Parking Disaster

Yiqian sent me this video. It was hilarious.

The lady’s “ultimate” parking skill reminded me of an incident that happened when I was in year one. I was driving my mum’s jumbo machine and attempted to park at a corner/parallel lot at the rag site. After several attempts and receiving weird stares from the “audience” at the rag site, Terence came up to me and asked if I needed help.

In the end. He parked the car for me. With just one attempt.

Useful information to make an educated decision.

Not going to comment on this information. But I thought it will be useful for students enrolling into the various  business school (among the 3 public universities) in Singapore come June 2009, to make an educated decision. But of course, ranking and reputation are only some factors among others that you will need to consider. 

But I am a marketer, what can I say, I am a brand whore, that’s because a brand signifies an expected quality that the organization will/can deliver.



Mr Smiley broke my record.


Have you heard? Mr Smiley broke the record at somethingboutrenes. His witty, non-apologizing writing on his lavish-mile-high experience generated overwhelming responses.

Dear Readers. Wake up your idea. You know somethingboutrenes can’t afford to hire him as our full time columnist.  

Mr Smiley Goes to Sunny O.C

This is not the usual SbR post. In fact, this is supposed to be a guest column, coz SbR has too much work on her hand plotting global domination (so long no professor gets stabbed) and not enough time updating this blog. So here I am. In Oscar-speak, I’m the seat filler. So as I think about subjects to write about, I thought, why not write about my fav pasttime, flying premium class on the world’s leading premium airline?

Early that morning, SbR sends Mr Smiley (thats me of coz) to the airport. After exchanging a warm embrace and a farewell smackeroo on lips greasy from yummy sausage mcmuffins, off I go for some luxe in the sky. No no, not the Mile-High type, just good ol’ opulent shite that fits snugly in a Tatler article.   

smiley goes travelling


And as I settle down into what they lovingly term the Skysuite (its a bloody lounge in itself, an uber comfy leather cum woodtrimmed autobot which easily transforms into an almost full-flat bed), I begin my voyage with what else, a glass of bubbly Krug of coz. Yum.

The cheery japanese $5 stewardess (nono, before you raise your hands up in fury, this is in fact one super smart way of differentiating different ranking cabin crew. $1 = blue = non ranking blue CC. $5 = green = leading CC. $10 = red = chief “ah ma” CC. $1000 = purple = in-flight supervisor = rare dinos. keke. ) was as flawless in her service as her complexion, as she brought round after round of drinks until I surrenderred. Burp. 

bubbly krug

Oh btw did I mention we were still on ground taxiing to the runway? Shiok la. And as we rose amongst the fluffy clouds to the cruising altitude of roughly 30+ thousand feet, I spied with the corner of my eye the rich cliente gathered in the front of the cabin. Wealthy looking? Check. Sharp, crisp togs? Check. CEO pattern? Check. Gorgeous, Daniel Wu-ish drop dead hunkdorylookers? Ermmmm… But Still! This is still some excluuuuusive company man.

As the seatbelt fastened sign dimmed, the crew swung into action to prep our meals. Btw did I mention how yummmmmmy the satay served was?? No pics here, but i tell u, its heavenly flavourful morsels of mutton and chicken bathed in rich Asian peanut sauce. Too bad the old white man beside me wasnt too impressed. 

On to the main dishes!! It was a hell of a long 18 hour flight, with a break in between to mangaland. All dishes here are aparrently presented on Givenchy porcelain wares. Except the Japo Kaiseke Bentos of coz. OOOOoooooo… 




Was kinda stuffed after that so I deployed the bed and watched a few shows on the world’s best inflight entertainment system. STOP ROLLING UR EYES!!!


After which they decided it was time to feed us again. And this time, it was posh I tellya, POSH! For starters I had caviar with a shot of vodka, which totally went with the overpriced fish eggs. My appetite has been whetted.  

p1010027Next up, the soup. Now I’ve always liked mushroom soups, and have you ever thought how the humble mushroom soup can be glammed up? They dress it with truffle cream man! It was delish yes, but it felt like giving the nice homemaker-next-door a visit to Hollywood Secrets! Gimme plain old mushroom anytime. Btw aint the soup gorgeous laying on those Givenchys?  


And finally, the piece de resistance. Beef cheeks with Asparagus and mashed potatoes!  Paired with a super pricey red from Francois-land, the Chateau Pichon, its just shiok la! Full marks!!! Clapclapclap! 



Well now, feeling supremely satisfied, the $5 CC brought on dessert, a Granny Smith apple (atas la, cannot normal china fuji one meh?) crumble paired with vanilla icecream. So much for the cycling sessions. Sigh. 


And after that, and more Chateau Pichon later, I lazed back and scoured the movie catalog for goodies. This is life, man. And I await the next feeding time. Buuuuuurp!


Which incidentally isnt very long when you’r so occupied by the (once again) world’s best inflight entertainment system. Morning came swiftly, and I was on the other side of the Pacific, almost reaching sunny (but chilly) L.A. I wanted some homely comfort food, and short of eating char bee hoon, I ordered the closest thing the riche have – fried egg noodles with huge juicy prawns and scallops. For Breakfast!

And as I prepare for disembarkation at the bus terminal-like LAX, here are some other luxuries we throw in to attract premium class passengers. Among others, Evian bottled water (what else??), Salvatore Ferragammo (sic?) toiletry range and pyjamas, choc truffles and a whole range of cheese and fruits after dinner, and the list goes on and on. 


This I say, is a damn goooood way to fly!