Saturday, November 30, 2002

Okay, I'm not doing any work over here. Hardly surprising, huh? Anyway, some things I have found of interest on the internet:

I just saw the teaser trailer for Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle and had a really great laugh. Check out the riduculously unrealistic stunt involving a tank, a bazooka, a military truck and a military helicopter
here. This sequel appears to be as funny, outrageous and campy as the first. I just can't wait!

One film I don't have to wait till next summer to see is Zhang Yimou's martial arts epic Hero. Audience members who are unfamiliar with the wuxia genre (which is more prevalent here than gun-slinging Westerns ever were in Hollywood) will inevitably compare it to the most recent and popular film from the genre, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (which wasn't as successful in East Asia, than in the rest of the world, because local audiences felt that it wasn't v. original and was only an "introduction" to the wuxia genre for Western audiences).

The ensemble cast is phenomenal and includes Jet Li (Will American audiences finally realise that he can actually act, as well as kick arse?), Zhang Ziyi (The ingenue in CTHD), the luminous Maggie Cheung and her In The Mood For Love co-star Tony Leung.

Check out the trailer here. Christopher Doyle's cinematography looks exquisite and his use of contrasting colours is amazing, especially the scene in which the crimson-wearing Maggie and Ziyi draw swords within an autumn-gold forest.

The film opens in Hong Kong on December 19. Unfortunately, audiences outside Asia will have to wait at least six months more.

Friday, November 29, 2002

Deep you-know-what
Feck. Feck. Feck.

All I have done, revision-wise, in the last couple of days is some Professional Practice readings. Even then, I haven't retained any of it. Ask me about a solicitor's duty of confidentiality and I would not be able to answer. I don't know a thing.

I blame it on the internet. I have been spending too much time online, catching up on all the blogs I used to regularly visit or reading stupid bulletin boards with the most imbecilic contributors making the most idiotic comments (but of course, these BBs are always a thoroughly entertaining read.) I am having trouble writing notes on the computer, as it is simply too tempting to click on IE and start surfing. Can you see my dilemma?

Somebody please unplug my broadband connection! Better yet, somebody take away my computer!

Thursday, November 28, 2002

Bring it on (the cramming, that is)
Well, first semester is almost over. Regular classes ended yesterday (although there are some course revision classes next week) and folks have quickly flocked back home or to the library to study for the forthcoming exams. Fortunately, we have two weeks of stuvac (study vacation) before my first exam on December 12 (a four hour marathon on Conveyancing). I definitely need all that time to prepare, considering some of my texts are in mint condition (their spines are uncreased) and all the exams are closed book, to a certain extent (although some ordinances and Solicitors' Rules are exempt). Yikes!

I have six exams, pretty much one every second day, and finish on December 23 with Accounts (bummer). Then there is a lovely, yet v. brief, break till classes start again on January 6.

Pray for me, dear readers. I need divine intervention!

Tuesday, November 26, 2002

Money money money
Indeed, Christmas has come early pour moi. It has been three months, but the Firm has finally transferred the grant money they had promised to pay.

This means I can stop worrying about how I'm going to find enough money for food and transport next month, after payment of my next credit card bill.

I promise not to spend it on frivilous things, like clothes, DVDs and magazines. At least, not all it.

Sunday, November 24, 2002

Hello, sailor!
During the "American spy plane" incident last year, many Hong Kongers dreaded the worse. Sadly to say, such fears had little to do with the then quickly-deteriorating Sino-US relations. Instead, they were mostly to do with local economics.

Beijing immediately imposed a ban on American naval vessels from using the territory as a port of call, after the heated incident. Retailers in Hong Kong winced at the mere thought of losing such a lucrative source of tourism dollars. Hong Kong's loss resulted in a gain for other cities in the region, including her dreaded uppity rival - the bland, yet efficient, Singapore.

Well, time heals "old" wounds, and nothing helps the healing process more, or shouts "let's be friends again" louder than cold hard cash.

The American aircraft carrier, USS Constellation, sailed into Hong Kong waters on Friday with its battle group. Clearly, last year's "spy plane incident" has become distant memory, with the local media, government and business communities eagerly anticipating the injection of funds into the dreary economy.

The USS Constellation battle group is currently on six-month deployment to the North Arabian Sea area and are expected to play a role in the US-led war on terrorism. They plan to stay until Wednesday. Next Friday, before the Suzies in Wanchai can even cross their legs or let out a sigh of relief, the USS Kitty Hawk and its battle group will arrive in Honkers for port call.

More than 12,000 US sailors within two weeks. Can you hear the cash registers ringing? I guess Christmas time has come early for everyone.
Surely I knew, while I purchasing the first season of Queer As Folk on DVD, that I would pretty much be kissing good bye any and all my well-intentioned plans to study, this weekend.

Well OK, intentions mean nothing, when I knew I was never going to do any actual study. I know it's simply an attempt to delude myself early on, so that my guilty conscience is allayed.

HMV in TST1 has become my local "crack" dealer and I frequent the store at least twice a week. Apart from becoming the place, where I purchase most of my mags, from "Attitude" and "Out" to "Men's Non-No" from Japan, I have been recently tempted by their DVDs.

When I discovered their prices, I almost wet myself. VCDs are priced from an astonishingly low HK$15 (US$2). A huge array of recent DVD titles are only HK$35. I considered buying half their stock, but remained sane and settled on just two titles - the brilliant Bring It On (One of the gayest teen movies of recent times: Awesome! Oh wow! Like totally freak me out! I mean, right on! Toros sure are number one! *with arm gestures*) and the exquisite Elizabeth (J'adore Cate Blanchett. She was bloody robbed, I tell ya!).

Total price = HK$30. Nice.

Rest assured, all the DVDs and VCDs are legit. The only real downside about these Zone 3 DVDs is that subtitles are permanently attached to the film and many of the DVD "extras" are missing. But hey, that's a small price to pay for dirt cheap prices.

Unfortunately, sets of Felicity, Sex And The City and QAF (both UK and US) are all imported, so they have foreign prices attached.

1TsimShaTsui. I shall upload a "glossary" of "people and places" that will introduce, to the unfamiliar reader, folks whom I write about and certain places around Hong Kong.

Thursday, November 21, 2002

At around 11:00pm, Hong Kong time last night, this lil' whorehouse on the quiet side of the Internet superhighway received its 10,000th distinct visitor, since March.

Although it has only been eight months, it seems like I have been blogging for ages. On many occassions, I have questioned myself why I am doing this. Even at this point in time, I am still searching for an appropriate reason, as I definitely need to reflect my attentions elsewhere.

Originally, I thought a weblog would be a great medium for me to chronicle the time before and after my move to Hong Kong. As well, I felt I needed a "place" to bitch and moan about things around me. Well, the former doesn't seem so blog-worthing now and latter didn't pan out (as I felt that self-censorship and restraint was more prudent, when most regular readers know me in real life).

Alas, this site is currently suffering growing pains (or should that be "quarter-life crisis" or extended adolescence), much like the author is in real life. Which direction will this place go, who knows?

Wednesday, November 20, 2002

Let's get physical
After much procrastination, I hauled my lazy arse over to Central and joined a gym, last week. This afternoon, in my emaciated state (I've lost 4 kgs since August), I completed my first workout.

I felt infinitely better afterwards, both physically and mentally. What has been clearly lacking in my weekly routine these past few months has been regular exercise. My body has been deprived of that regular kick of serotonin and endorphin I used to have. I'm sure this has contributed to my most recent mood swing to the funky side.

Postscript on Lacoste and Ian Lawless: The commercial is being played on local HK television. Shockingly, Ian Lawless is wearing chinos during the whole thing, which is so not on! I feel obligated to complain (and/or start a petition, demanding to see the uncensored version) to the television censors at TVB on behalf of all those who believe in art and the beauty of the male nude form (that is, me and all the other homos).

Saturday, November 16, 2002

New version
I thought I would make a few (much needed) changes to the site.

As you may correctly perceive, I do have Sydney on my mind at the moment. It is not homesickness, as I am not longing to return. It is a feeling of nostalgia, more than anything else.

The photograph of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House was taken on my last day in Sydney. HKPhooey, Will and I were bumming around the Botannical Gardens and Circular Quay that afternoon. The weather appears less than idyllic (in Sydney terms), as there were dark clouds looming above the western parts of the city. What cannot be seen is the brilliantly clear and sunny skies behind me at that time. Nevertheless, as evidenced by the photo, nothing can ever spoil that splendid view of Sydney Harbour.

I was intending to place a photo of Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong, but I still have not been able to take a flattering view of the skyline. On the many occassions I have stopped by the Kowloon foreshore intending to take a few pictures, the view is ruined by terrible conditions. There never seems to be clear blue sky abd the city is always shrouded in a hazy cloud of smog.

However, I shall peserve with the almost impossible task.

Friday, November 08, 2002

Notice to readers
The author of this weblog is currently experiencing a minor existential crisis. As a result, he plans to take a brief break from posting. Such occurrences are relatively common, so it is only a matter of time before updates will resume.

Apologies in advance.

Thursday, November 07, 2002

The noise! The noise!
Oh fecking hell, there is just too much construction noise! I have to complete a joint venture agreement redraft, due tomorrow, but I can't bloody concentrate with the distractions.

There's the next door neighbours, then there's the neighbours in the adjoining block of flats. To make matters worse, there's even more construction work going on at the Kowloon Hospital, right outside my bedroom window. There are currently three fecking jackhammers being used at the same time!


Wednesday, November 06, 2002

It appears Yves Saint Laurent is not the only label to use an incredibly sexy, hirsute man sans apparel to sell a fragrance. Lacoste has come up with one, which I must confess, is equally as appealing (left).

The Lacoste Pour Homme advertising campaign was photographed by Herb Ritts. The model (who will surely challenge Samuel de Cubber as the most famous nude male of the moment) is Aussie model, Ian Lawless.

To view the black and white television commercial, which was also directed by Herb Ritts (with revealing scenes of Ian's naked buttocks), go here. The cheeky smirk Ian provides in the last frame is Academy Award-winning!

Tuesday, November 05, 2002

I have read enough of Dilbert to know that one should never try too hard to do one's work properly, as competency in one's work only brings about more responsibility.

I've mentioned earlier that I was "nominated" to represent my group in the biweekly Course Review Panels. The general task was to get feedback on the course (hear all the bitching, moaning and complaining, etc) and then raise the appropriate topics at the Friday afternoon meetings. I started to write emails to the group, in order to keep them updated on these meetings, as I thought it would be appropriate. Common courtesy, right?

Well, it has kind of snow-balled from there. Apart from sendng this summary email to the group, it has become the official minutes for the Department (which means that I have to refrain from writing my own smart-arse comments). Recently, I was asked to send this email to the other group representives as well, so they could distribute it to their groups as well.

My plans to lay low for this academic year are coming undone. I fear people will begin to ask who this chump Keith is and why the hell is he writing these long-winded emails for people not in his group. Considering the bitchy attitudes of some people and the general rumour-mongering culture that permeates the course (as evident on a certain HK BBS) I can only imagine what some people can do with information about me and this blog...

That's a lesson to all you kids out there. Aim for mediocrity, remain anonymous and things will always be fine.

Sunday, November 03, 2002

Powerpuff advice
Bubbles, Blossom and Buttercup (with the help of Mojo Jojo et al) are displayed on public announcements around the MTR subway in Honkers. Apart from providing safety advice for passengers on the trains (below) the girls advise people to stand to the right on escalators and always be considerate to the elderly in the stations.

You don't know what you've got 'til its gone
Looking back at the weather we have experienced in the past few days, November, undoubtedly, is the best month of the year in Hong Kong.

Sunny blue skies, slight crisp breezes, lower pollution levels and, more importantly, lower humidy in 17-25C temperatures, has made for some excellent weather conditions, especially to stroll around the city. To me, it is v. reminiscent of Autumn and Spring in Sydney.

I've begun to appreciate good weather more and more, since moving here. Nowadays, I find a day with great weather a pretty rare occurrence, as heavy precipitation, air pollution or high humidity always seems to be off-puttingly present. I guess, since I lived in Sydney for most of my life, it had been all too easy not to appreciate fine weather, as gorgeous days seem to roll on endlessly, one after the other, over there. *sigh*

I'm beginning to miss Sydney, especially now, with the Gay Games on!

Friday, November 01, 2002

Male models
It seems the thing on everyone's lips at the moment is Samuel de Cubber. Hmm, that came out wrong, didn't it?

Anyhoo, the entry last Wednesday, in relation to the said dead-sexy model, has resulted in quite a lot of e-traffic. The incredible numbers did give this humble author quite a fright. It also made me momentarily query whether or not I had accidently crossed links with another weblog and stumbled onto someone else's statistcs chart. Since Sunday, lil' "urban nomad" has received triple digit visitor numbers daily. Of course, there's the few regular readers and those who are looking for "Brad Tomerlin" or "underwear revealing hipster jeans", but the vast majority of visitors are from search engines referrals, by people wanting more information about Samuel de Cubber.

And while I am still one the topic of male models, I have recently discovered who the "face" of Calvin Klein's Truth is. If you recall (or refer back to the archives), I mentioned my street encounters with this model's stunning black and white Calvin Klein posters a few months earlier. (For a refresher to those who don't recall or are newer readers, I was completely mesmerized by the then-unknown model and could not peel my eyes off the advertisement whenever I walked by, on my way to yoga. How adolescent am I?!)

Well, his name is Sean DeWet (left) and he has more in common to my beloved Gabriel Aubry than sharing my stalker-like obsession. While Gab is off to less greener pastures as the face of Michael Kors, as Hilton heiress handbag Jason Shaw's sidekick in Tommy Hilfiger and, er, the guy in the last two G2000 campaigns (with Kristie Hinze), Mr DeWet has replaced Gab as Hugo Boss' exclusive male model. Coincidence?