A rant a day keeps everyone away...

Thursday, June 24, 2010

A Dummies for Dummies Guide to Food Blogging

Come every June-July, I'll be surfing the net for Japanese fine dining (or at least edible Japanese cuisine) to take my dad out on his birthday. Why? Because every year he insists on eating salmon cooked ala Japanese style. I've told him that all he has to do is grill a piece of salmon served with rice but he says otherwise. As most of you know, most Malaysian websites are very uninformative. Especially the officials ones. Restaurant websites without menus, hotel websites without access maps and the most common of all "Site not found/Error 404/Site offline". Hence, I have to rely on food blogs posted by the common peasants who have tasted a slice of luxury in their life and insist on blogging about it. Ok, not all of them are peasants.

So back to the topic of food blogging. Let me be specific, MALAYSIAN food blogging. It annoys the sh*t outta me. I understand the need of you to sound intelligent like a real writer, but right-clicking on thesaurus is NOT the solution. Also, tYpinG liKe thIs is so not professional. We have all learn kata nama am and kata nama khas in grade school, have we not?

Second, photography. You want to look professional. Invest in a goddamn SLR cam or at least a camera with acceptable quality. And read up on lighting for the love of god. Auto flash is not the solution to life. The most important factor in food photography is color, not that white spot of flash in it. And a BIG NO to blue or purple lighting. If you've studied color, you'd know that blue and purple makes food very unappetizing. If the place is dark, get a mini tripod. If my 58 year old dad knows what it is, so do you.

Third: subject of photography. I am not interested in how pretty the soy sauce or vinegar bottles are. Or the entrance of the restroom. Unless the restroom resembles anything like Hooters', feel free to shoot away. The reason why anyone would be reading your blog is because they're looking for recommendation on a good place to eat. Not how cute you think the sauce plates are. And choose a proper angle to shoot your pictures. The last thing someone wants to see is a plate of beef salad with the beef portion cropped off.

Fourth, keep to the topic! Yes, we know there are lots of things going on in your life. Your partner isn't the most faithful person you thought him/her to be. But that's life. Leave topics like that in your personal blog. As I said before, I'm only reading your blog for food.

Fifth: babies are cute. Little girls and boys are cute. Puppies are cute. Food is not cute. Food is either delicious or crappy or anything that can describe the human taste-buds. Yes, the shape of the food may be cute, but all I want to know if it's edible or not. Only Japanese can legally use "cute" to describe anything. It's their culture.

Sixth, information. You wrote 10 paragraphs on how mouth watering the food is. How dining there gave you a life changing experience. Now you have me convinced and I really want to go there too. Then I realize I'm at a dead end. I have no freakin' idea where to go because you didn't provide an address or a slightest hint where in this country is this restaurant located. Or in another case that you have me convinced, I walk in and after showed to my table and gotten all comfy, I flip the appetizer menu to realize everything is in 3 digits. So yes, location and price is very helpful for our wallets.

Before writing this, I was discussing it with the sister. I expressed my concern of how I'd my blog will be bombed by angry food bloggers after reading this post. Her reply: "Hahahaha with what? Roti bom?"

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Contributing data to the internet world

In contrary to a certain best friend saying that my blog was a "waste of internet space". Well, you can't blame me since my last post was in January about job hunting and here I am, almost end of June and still jobless. Just reading the previous post makes me depressed. So best friend, I hope you're happy. This post is for you!

Recently my classmate told me her first impression of me is totally different from what I actually am. Initially she thought I was a serious and hardworking person from the way I introduced myself and greeted her. Boy was she wrong. I have no idea how I actually give out that impression cus if you know me well enough, "serious" and "hardworking" are definitely not in my books. I continued by asking her when did she "discover" my true colors. She said "Hmm...not that long after. You sorta destroyed that image rather fast".

In another case, today my lecturer reshuffled our seats because she thinks working around the same person for too long will "influence" our work. What a load of bullcrap. As if when you work in the industry, your boss will just make an announcement and reshuffle everyone's cubicle. Well now I'm stuck with this guy who I suspect is a damn loli-con (and sorta a loser) on my left and on my right is a guy who probably can count with his left hand how many times he had a conversation with a girl in a year. In other words, I have noone to rant out to during the deepest darkest hours of my 3D modeling class. So with my motivation level down to -5% after that, I didn't feel like modeling my 3D NY Times Square even though I was quite hyped up about it 5 minutes before. Just to kill time, I was googling what building goes where and the names of the buildings for fun. Seriously, it has VERY little relevance to my actual work. Upon seeing how into I was into drawing a map of portion of Times Square, a guy 2 seats away was like
"Wow, look at Koe-san. She's so detailed in her work."
The guy beside him turned and continued "Whoa yeah, you're even drawing it all out."
I turned around and said "Not really. I just don't feel like doing any work."
Guy #1: "....that was disappointing...."
Guy #2: "....whoa that was unexpected...."
So there. That's how I ruin whatever high image they have of me.

Malaysia Boleh.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Process

...of getting a job in Japan...I think. I'm not too sure myself. I'm just going along with the flow...

1. You'll have to write up a 自己分析 (self-analysis) and "episodes" of your life which are meaningful so that you can...

2. ...write up a lot of bull in your resume in the 自己PR (self PR/appeal) section. Do include how your existence can help the company in a very humble way. How? I have nfi.

3. Now that you're done with your resume (which I'm not), time to apply for 説明会 (job orientations). There are 2 types that are the 合同説明会 (think Education Fairs but instead, they're telling you about their company rather than their schools. And you have to be really nice to them instead) or 会社説明会 (in-company job orientation). In most cases, they might ask for your resume during the orientation so it's best to take it along. And if they decide to throw you a suprise, they might just have a written examination which consists of either a) a personality exam (SPI試験), b) a short essay in which the few hundred words that you use to express your ideas are analyzed and determines what kind of a person you are, how you think, your ideals etc. And they say a picture tells a thousand words. If they decide to throw a BIGGER suprise, they might just have a group interview right at the spot. During the orientation, it is advised to stand out by asking questions and conducting good behavior. And don't forget to wear a suit on that day.

4. From here on out I'm not too sure since my first job orientation session will be next week but lets just say this is part of the process. Not that the first 3 steps were 100% accurate, so it doesn't really matter if this is. I'm sure a sensible person wouldn't want to go through all this after reading step no.3. So I'm guessing after the job orientation in which you have gave your contact info through your resume to the company, will contact you if you're short-listed. After they have contacted you, you will have to call the company to arrange for an interview. Sounds easy? Hell no. We have a telephone manual on this topic. What to say at what situation. Its just like how Streamyx's helpline tells you to reset your modem for 2 minutes and if all else fails, tell the customer that the fault lies with their device and wash your hands of it. When calling for an interview, do not 1) Call in the first 30 minutes of opening hours, during lunch hour or 30 minutes before closing hours. You don't want to impose trouble on the company during their busy and rest time. Before that, it is advisable to not use your cellphone to make the call. Why? The case where your line suddenly cuts or you run out of battery or other reasons that only happens when you make the most important call of your life might occur therefore use a landline for calls such as these. What, no landline? Then use a public phone. But not just ANY public phone, use one from a hotel where it is quiet and there is a table for you to write down a memo regarding the interview.

5. Now that you've gotten an interview, you're all set to go. Things to bring: a map (to find the place), any documents regarding the interview, shoe polish, mirror, comb, handkerchief and makeup. Doesn't it just shouts "Looks DOES matter?". Arrive at reception 5-10 minutes before appointed time. In the case where you need to use the toilet, use one at another building, not where you're having the interview. In the case where you HAVE to use the one in that building, do not use the one on the same floor as where the interview will be held. Chances of you bumping into your interviewer at the toilet there are higher and you might be makeup-less and you wouldn't want your future employer to see you in your worst. IMHO I think you'd have better chances of giving a better impression in the toilet rather than in the interview room since you're more relaxed at the loo. Who isn't. At the reception, be very nice to the receptionist. At that moment, you are lower than them. If you're gonna be bitchy, do it after you've gotten the job. Say thank you to whatever he/she does. Smile at all times. In the elevator, hold the door for anyone and everyone. Ask them which floor they would like to go to and press the button for them. They might be your interviewer and you want to set a fake but good impression. Think about it this way. After stepping foot inside, if you're at the pantry, play the tea-lady/guy role. In the elevator, play the role of the lift-boy/girl. Upon entering the waiting room, do not think just sitting at any available seat is all. Avoid sitting at the inner most seat. Why? I don't know. All I know is that the seat away not facing the door but closest to the door is your best option. I have NFI.

6. After your interview there is more hell which I'm not sure yet since I haven't reached this far. Maybe I'll continue this when I do find out. Or if I ever will.

For now, I have 2 job orientations in February. One with Capcom and another with Namco-Bandai. I'm praying I just get a job on the spot sans interviews. My ideal scenario:
"You speak English? You've got the job!"
...I wish.

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Thursday, January 21, 2010

I really dread this...

So I did it. I sent a sorta informal letter to this company that I reaaaally want to get in and in my Enid Blyton mind, I keep thinking I'm gonna get the job since I can speak both Japanese and English but when I shut Enid out, I just know I'm gonna be rejected. I've been putting off sending this email about the job enquiry because if I do get rejected it means I have to go through the tedious process that every other Japanese go through: job interviews. It's one hell of a process. I'll blog about the things you have to go through (and the inconvenience) one day. I'm so scared I'm gonna get rejected. Please don't reject me **********!

On a side note, I put my name down for Namco-Bandai and Capcom's job orientation. Yes, we have to go for the orientation BEFORE applying for the real thing to know what you're gonna get into. I DID say tedious before, didn't I.

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Monday, January 4, 2010

2009...short and sweet

As the title says.
So, 2009 was

and thats it.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Im thinking...

..of starting a side Graphic Design blog. Well for now. And only so I can brag about it during my job interview next year that I do have a life besides school homework and lazing around. Or something like that. Its probably going to be past homework submissions.

Friday, August 14, 2009

District Sembilan

Seeing my previous movie reviews (Dragon Tiger Gate and The Prestige) were epic fails, I've decided to try a hand at it again to at least put my LimKokWing school fees to good use (Film Studies class. Cesar will be proud!). So, I'll give it a try with Peter Jackson's District 9.

With great time at the TV comes great knowledge of advertisements or so says Uncle Ben thus led me to watching District 9's trailer over and over and over again. But still I had no fockin' clue what the heck the movie was about. All I knew was it was about aliens and a place called District 9. I also noted how there was no focus on the cast but rather on the name Peter Jackson (in case you didn't know, he was the director of LOTR trilogy and also nabbed the Best Director Oscar). In other words, instead of selling the Hollywood cast, he was selling his name and reputation as a director, thus leading to GSC selling District 9's tix at RM6, unlike G.I. Joe's RM9 tickets. They probably googled Peter Jackson's filmography and came up with Lord of the Rings and deduced that he was an Orc extra on set and assumed he's some B-grade actor that settled for some Hollywood wannabe alien sci-fi movie. Maybe. Don't get me wrong, I do respect him as a director for casting Orlando Bloom as Legolas and I think his work is amazing. But that's besides the point. I'm supposed to be reviewing the movie.

To be honest, when I saw the trailer I thought I'd watch it if someone invited me but I wouldn't be the invitee, until my dad saw the poster of the alien mothership. He said he HAS to watch this movie so I said OK and here I am typing this review that isn't going anywhere. Well my point was actually I wasn't that interested in the movie. But after watching it I did. Sorta. Kinda.

What I thought was quite unique about this movie is the way the movie was told. Instead of the usual 3rd person view; watching the story unfold as an audience, it is told in a documentary-like style. Rather than watching a movie, it feels more realistic than just an ordinary fiction. I was expecting the usual hack-slash alien killing action movies (actually my dad was REALLY expecting that) but this gave a more fresh feeling compared to the norm. I won't touch anything about the storyline in respect of the effort they put in keeping us in the dark about the movie's story. There's a reason why the trailer was so vague.

I know the Wachowski Bros. are fans of Japanese mecha and anime, but I'm quite sure Peter Jackson might be one too. Some designs look preeeetty similar to Metal Gear Solid 4's mecha designs (*cough*Metal Ray*cough*). If you didn't get this part, its just the gaming geek in me writing. I just needed to get this out of my system since I can't share this with my dad obviously.

OK I think this review is even shittier than my Dragon Tiger Gate review. At least I made more sense in the latter. Or I just wanted to show off my so called deep observation skills. I DID wanted to be a movie director in one point of my life. I still do honestly. For a very shallow reason. i just wanna be around celebs at work

On a side note, this will be the last movie I plan to watch in Kuantan. There are too many secondary script writers who can't help but express their fockin' ideas.