Your Ad Here

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Laksa and Birthdays at LCP

We had given a weeks' notice to make sure that we get our laksa today. As we arrived at about 11 a.m. (Church service was longer than usual this morning) laksa was not available to the late comers again unfortunately!! The others were so gracious about it and they ordered other dishes. Praise God we three could have our laksa.

James brought two small "token" cakes as the birthday surprises for Richard's( today) and Jennifer Yong (tomorrow). A blessed and special way to have birthdays recognised by cell group members in LCP.

This is my laksa - (one week's pre-order !)Looks good and tastes even better. You got to try!!

Three angelic Wongs leading the singing of the birthday song.

Richard - as happy as can be.

Jennifer being helped with her birthday candle. (no - she is still very young with lots of energy for praising and praise dancing)

Jennifer says with her hands "I'm going to let this little light shine".

Happy cell group - one more time - altogether S-M-I-L-E

The lady behind the laksa and the kampua....she was impressed by our group's JOY.

Can I Interest You in a Meme?

Thanks to Edward Copeland over at Edward Copeland on Film, I've been tagged for a meme. So beware. Some of you may be next. The idea is simple....kind of: list your ten favorite film characters. Not actors, but characters. This is hard because a lot of my favorite characters come from the same films, but in the interest of not having a list full of characters from a total of three movies, I decided to try and mix it up a little. In no way is this a definitive list; however, it's a pretty good idea of what characters have stuck with me over the years. Some are recent, some the end of the list I will complete the rules of this meme, which is to tag five more people to continue the meme. So, let's get on with it...

In no particular order:

1.) Nathan Arizona - Raising Arizona

Not the conventional pick from this classic Coen Brothers comedy, but really it's the one character that stands out the most to me. I almost did go with the conventional pick, Nicolas Cage as H.I. McDunnough, but the late Trey Wilson's performance as Nathan Arizona is the performance that still resonates with me. He epitomizes everything that is great about supporting characters in Coen Bros. movie, and his speech at the end of the film is a beautiful mixture of Coenisms and authoritative advice. Plus who could forget this exchange:

Policeman in Arizona house: What did the pyjamas look like?
Nathan Arizona Sr.: I don't know - they were jammies! They had Yodas 'n' shit on 'em!

One of the all time great supporting performances and one of my favorite Coen Bros. characters (my favorite is coming up later). It's sad that Wilson, a gifted character actor, died fairly early into his acting career at the age of 41. He was one of the best. Or my name aint Nathan Arizona!

2.) Ellen Ripley - Aliens

The ultimate bad ass in all of sci-fi is one of the most memorable characters in all of film. Sigourney Weaver made the role her own, proving that a female could open an action movie (or a big budget movie) without the help of a male lead. It's the one film in the series where we see Ripley's maternal instincts as she cares for the waif like Newt. It's some of the best acting Weaver has done as she portrays one of the strongest female characters in all of film. Also, she gets one of the most memorable and cheer-inducing last lines when she screams "get away from her you bitch!"

3.) Frank T.J. Mackey - Magnolia

Tom Cruise this caricature of a character into something deeper and more profound. Yes, the entire film goes for big operatic moments, and no actor is more up to the task than Cruise. His character, a sex guru who specializes in the 'art' of not just being able to get women in bed, but how to to do it while being unattached. Mackey is one of those characters that you know exists in the real world, thinking that women are always out to get him. What's so memorable are the completely hilarious conferences he holds for his product called "Seduce and Destroy". It's one of the cinemas most bizarrely funny moments, because really we're looking at an individual who is so obviously empty and has issues from his past with women (or the way they were treated by people he loved) that director Paul Thomas Anderson is able to evoke both empathy and laughs out of Mackey's speeches. When it's all said and done (the film that is), the reason why this character stands out for me is that even in the most 'disgusting' people, there is hope for redemption. Cruises' Mackey is one of the actors greatest creations.

4.) Shelley Levene - Glengarry Glen Ross

Shelly 'the machine' Levine is one of the all time memorable characters. So pathetic in his attempts to try and make it in the modern day sales world, that he can't see that the times have passed him by. Once a great salesman, the truly pathetic thing about Levine is that he spends more time selling his bosses on the fact that he still can cut it, instead of going out an making sales. There are moments in the film that prove why Shelly is one of my favorite characters, none more obvious than the ending, when we see a man broken and beaten, committing an act he will have to pay the price for all because he loves his daughter and feels lost, confused, and misused in the modern day sales world. Jack Lemmon played Levine to perfection, and what makes the character memorable for me is that every time I watch the film (which is often) I always wish he would not to do what he does at the end, and that his phantom sale actually does mean redemption for the character. When you're still that emotionally involved with a character after more than 20 viewings of a film, then that's how you know you have a special actor creating a special character. The character lives on in the form of Gil Gunderson, the pathetic do-anything salesman on The Simpson's

5.) Clarence Boddicker - Robocop

One of my favorite villains from any movie, Kurtwood Smith created the perfect nihilistic monster in a futuristic Detroit devoid of any police presence. "Can you fly, Bobby!" and "Are you a good cop, hot shot", are memorable lines that come to mind, not mention the maniacal way he sizes up Peter Weller's cop (pre-robo) before he shoots his hand off. It's a great performance, filled with beautiful over the top moments (dipping his finger in wine and then snorting it) that really, for me, epitomizes what the 1980's action villain was all about.

6.) The Bride - Kill Bill

There was no journey I was more invested in than The Bride's in Quentin Tarantino's masterpieces Kill Bill Vol.1 and 2. It's one of those journeys of revenge that is found in all of the usual Tarantino films he studies and adores, but what made this one more enjoyable was the emotion that Uma Thurman brought to the character of The Bride. This wasn't a simplistic grindhouse revenge picture, Tarantino's film was more than a pastiche of film references from his youth, it was a tremendous story of what a mother will do to get her daughter, and all of that emotion and deeper analysis that comes with the film is due to the seriousness Thurman brings to her role. The Bride kicks a lot of ass, yes, but it's with purpose, and when that final act comes in Volume 2, it's truly heartbreaking....and when we see the final scene of the film, The Bride cradling a stuffed animal on the bathroom floor, tears of joy streaming down her face, and all she can do is let out a noise that is a mix between a sob and laugh, we sob and laugh with her. It's the best acting Thurman's ever done and it's one of those characters that you don't mind revisiting because they are super cool and they get a happy ending.

7.) Dr. David Huxley - Bringing Up Baby

Probably my favorite character that Cary Grant ever played, Huxley is one of those memorable screwball characters who is so uptight, that you love watching their transformation into a more laid back, less self-serving person. It's one of those roles, too , that show why Grant was such a tremendous comedic actor. Howard Hawks' film is one that I never mind revisiting, and a lot of that is due to Huxley, a character that you don't mind spending time with, even if he is uptight, because we know he'll experience things along the way that will help him see the err of his ways. Plus, there are few greater moments in classic comedy than when Huxley is left to wear a female robe and resorts to screaming a response as to why he's wearing those clothes when he says "because I just went gay all of a sudden!"

8.) Del Griffith - Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

John Candy may not have been the funniest guy in the world, but his portrayal of Del Griffith is his zenith as an actor, and it's how I'll always remember him. Griffith is one of those creations made specifically for a John Hughes movie, which means we've all met someone like Del before because Hughes was so great at creating real to life characters. Griffith is one of those characters you tell yourself you'd love to sit and talk with and hear his stories, but then it becomes too much. Neil Page (Steve Martin) discovers this throughout the film as a friendship does indeed grow between the two men, it doesn't come without its rocky parts. Griffith is a guy we constantly feel for because he seems likable enough, but which one of us wouldn't snap at him like Page does in the famous scene in the hotel room. "Here's Del Griffith he's got some amusing anecdotes for you, here's a gun you'll thank me." Those lines sting, and the viewer feels the sting, too, because we care so much about Griffith. He's another in a long line of these kinds of characters where I ask myself, would I like to spend another two hours with him, and the answer is yes.

9.) Marge Gunderson - Fargo

I wish we could all know someone as nice as Margie. Frances McDormand created a brilliant character for the ages with her portrayal as pregnant sheriff Marge Gunderson. The dialect, the mannerisms, the famous lines; they've all been mentioned to death. What makes Margie such a memorable character for me is her warmth. Consider the scene where she meets with an old high school 'friend', the way she is cognizant of what he is trying to do, and how she balances trying to let him know she's married and not interested, and the way she tries to spare his feelings is a tremendous balancing act. Another scene is in the way she assures her husband, an artist who has has one of his paintings of a bird selected for the three cent stamp, that even though it's not the stamp everyone uses, lots of people still use the three cent. Her reasoning for this is so warm and compassionate. McDormand pulls is off perfectly creating one of the warmest characters in all of cinema.

10.) Dean Miller - Nightmare City

Well, last but certainly not least is the man I've named the blog after, Hugo Stiglitz. Dean Miller is the ultimate representation of the male character in every Italian Horror film. Dedicated to the cause, no matter the price he pays or the risk he puts his wife in. He even slaps her around for a bit because she is hysterical, and then they immediately kiss and make up. Really, this selection is just a conglomerate of all the great and memorable characters I've seen over the years in Italian Horror films. And, it was yet another excuse to mention the brilliance of Hugo Stiglitz.

Okay --- five blogs that I'm choosing to participate in the fun (sorry if you've already been asked):

Elusive as Robert Denby
Cerebral Mastication
Coleman's Corner in Cinema
Gateway Cinephiles
The Film Doctor

Anil Kapoor Wallpapers free

Download free Anil Kapoor Wallpapers
Picture : Funky red background , Bollywood Actor in White tshirt blue jeans

Download free Anil Kapoor Wallpapers
Picture : Movie Wallpaper , Bollywood Actor Anil Kapoor in suit with rose flowers

Download free Anil Kapoor Wallpapers
Picture : Dark red black background , Bollywood Actor in Maroon shirt

Rani Mukherjee Wallpapers

Download Free : Rani Mukherjee Wallpapers
image / photo / pic : Black Background , Bollywood actress rani in black dress

Download Free : Rani Mukherjee Wallpapers
image / photo / pic : Yellow Background , Bollywood actress rani Bubbly image

Download Free : Rani Mukherjee Wallpapers
image / photo / pic : light Background , Bollywood actress rani mukherjee in black dress

Download Free : Rani Mukherjee Wallpapers
image / photo / pic : Blue Shade Background , Bollywood actress rani mukherjee in the movie Sawaariya

Download Free : Rani Mukherjee Wallpapers
image / photo / pic : Bollywood actress rani from the bollywood hindi movie Laaga chunari mein daag

Download Free : Rani Mukherjee Wallpapers
image / photo / pic : Natural Scene Background , Bollywood actress Rani in white dress

Friday, March 20, 2009

Ah Chiong BB Officer Getting Married

Since I wrote about their the civil registration of their marriage in Sibu I might as well complete the story today!! Their wedding was at Sing Ang Tong - the first Methodist Church in Sarawak. This church was built in Sungei Merah or Sing Chuo Sang (New Pearl Mountain) in 1903 not long after the first Foochow Settlers arrived under the leadership of Wong Nai Siong.

Sing Ang Tong has been "changed" and renovated more than four times over the years from attap to the present concrete and steel structure.

The Bridal Kiss dates back to the Roman times. The Romans practised the sealing of a contract or agreement with a kiss. The kiss seals the nuptial agreement between Ah Chiong and Ei Ling. In the 60's we also had a song "Sealed with a Kiss".

Since many of you readers are from the Methodist Church Boys' Brigade and Girls' Brigade I have selected another photo for your viewing.

The bridal couple would walk out of the church under an arch of swords which represent protection from the groom's brothers and friends. This is again a very old European ceremony. But Ah Chiong being a BB Officer and Ei Ling will be protected in his marriage by his BB's!! The Boys Brigade really look good.

(By the way when I was very little I used to worship in Sing Ang Tong often accompanying my grandfather and grandmother. The pastor was Rev Ho Siew Liong who spoke Foochow with a very strong Heng Hua accent. I always thought that he looked like Jesus.)

These photos are from Steve Ling a popular reporter and former Methodist School school mate of mine.

Congratulations Ah Chiong and Ei Ling

Thoughts of Feather Fans

Another leaf from my own history lessons!!

I have often thought about asking an artist to draw a picture of my grandmother carrying a fan. That image is just so clear in my mind!! This is a drawing I found in Google Images. But it is still not my grandmother. Nearly though.

My grandmother loved to carry a fan which was actually part of her dressing. With a fan in hand she was always neat and tidy. To my youthful eyes then she was one cool lady. Indeed I never saw her flustered and sweaty. And I remember her being really angry only once in my life - when my cousin Ching did not get a job with a finance company.

Her "coolness" secret? A fan in hand. Those were the days when air conditioning was non-existent in Sibu.

Whenever she travelled up to Sibu she would never fail to put her feather fan in her basket. And I do remember with fondness that every one respected her basket all along the Rejang River. And this I do remember again - there was zero crime in the motor launch. No body stole from any body. So for years my grandmother carried the same good fan travelling up and down the river until it became synonymous with her.

And now take a look at this! A man who was synonymous with a feather fan! Zhuge Liang was a great historical figure who carried a crane feather fan at all times.

This is a hand drawn picture of Zhuge Liang. This kind of pictorial depiction of historical figure is a classic method. In most manhwa we used to read in the olden days cartoonists drew in this style. So I am very comfortable with it.

A new version of Zhuge Liang's fan in Red Cliff II (Zhuge Liang is played by Takeshi Kaneshiro )

Zhuge Liang or Kung Ming (also known as the Hidden Dragon) was the most famous strategist and inventor in Chinese history. His life history is part of the Romance of Three Kingdoms. In 208 in the Battle of Red Cliffs he showed that by knowing the geography of the area a battle could be won.

This is a painting by a western artist. The fan is highlighted.

In another arena - the English Francis Drake in 1588 defeated the Spanish Armada by being patient. He waited until he finished his game of bowls. The tide came up and a storm blew to destroy more than half of the 130 Spanish ships. The English defeated the great Spanish Armada with very few cannons and other fire arms. Queen Elizabeth I remained souvereign of the Seas!

Well the pages of history repeatedly tell us that Sun Tzu 's Art of War is supreme. Knowledge of geography can help win a battle.

Let's keep our cool by carrying a nice fan!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Boy over flowers wallpaper

Shangri La

This movie Lost Horizon was shown in Sibu years ago and gave many young girls hopes and dreams of Shangri La. And I wasn't different from them for I have since then harbour that romantic notion of a mystical land where everything would be just perfect.

We were given this book as part of our class reading programme.

Our own Shangri La - The Mulu - beauty through the eyes of a good photographer -(Flickr Photo from MacLoo)

This morning as I was cleaning out one of my bookshelves I caught sight of a very old school reader "Lost Horizon" by British author James Hilton and I was immediately reminded of my dreams of "Shangri-La" which might not be a common metaphor for young people today. But to people of my age Shangri La is a mystical, harmonious valley, gently guided from a lamasery, enclosed in the western end of the Kunlun Mountains.

Nope. I am not throwing out this torn and tattered book. It will have to stay on the shelf.

In the last forty years my journeys have indeed been in search of this mythical Shangri-La . Have I ever found it?

With China opening up and with Tibet becoming a really nice tourist destination we may now visit it after a wait of more than 40 years! May be that" mythical Himalayan utopia—a permanently happy land, isolated from the outside world" could be a reachable destination for me. In the novel Lost Horizon, the people who live at Shangri-La are "almost immortal, living years beyond the normal lifespan and only very slowly aging in appearance. The word also evokes the imagery of exoticism of the Orient. The story of Shangri-La is based on the concept of Shambhala, a mystical city in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition".

Now what is your thought today?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...