Monday, September 30, 2013

On K-dramas and C-dramas

I haven't been watching any proper K-drama for a long time. I depend on my TV for the K-dramas since they have great English subtitles. I heard of some great buzz on the series Good Doctor and it stars my favourite young actor (thanks to his endearing sweetness in 2 Days 1 Night), Joo Won. Unfortunately I read the synopsis which made no sense (low IQ autistic man becomes a peadetrician against all odds- imagine that... even a normal IQ person can't easily become a doctor no matter how he willed himself to be one so the synopsis is rather idiotic), but I watched, for 15 minutes and I had to switch it off. Joo Won on any day is a rising star with some good acting skills but his performance as that doctor is painful to watch. Just too painful.

So I ended up watching Cheong Damdong Alice. First out of curiosity due to the career damaging charges against the lead star, Park Shi Hoo. Second, I was bored stiff. It is only 16 episodes and 2 episodes per week. It is slow, very very slow but I find myself enjoying the series. In fact Park Shi Hoo was the life of the series with his cute antics like some teenage girl in love. It was an OTT performance but aptly OTT. His every piece of suit is just amazing. Love his interaction with his dad and such. But everytime I see him I will sigh because I kept mumbling "What a pity.. what a pity". Are the charges true? Only he and the girl involved will know. Too much mud has been slung against one another, I am not even sure. His fans are convinced the girl is an attention money grabbing slut who should be lucky he even wanted to touch her more so sleep with her. Critics say he did it because he was seen carrying the very drunk girl into the place and her evidence suggests that much. The way I see it, could it be a case where she may have flirted with him, he thought he had consent and so did the deed? I don't know. All I know is if tax evasion forces a star to go into hiding for a few years, if missing military duties kills a career, more so such a damaging allegation such as rape? Of course in his defense the girl withdrew charges. You decide. But it is undeniable he was the reason Cheong Damdong Alice was enjoyable to watch.

I think 1 K-drama at a time is more than enough.

As for C-drama, I am happy to announce General Yue Fei, that one starring Huang Xiaoming, Ruby Lin and Gallen Lo is coming to Ch 308 ASTRO! When? Don't know. No dates given. I think it could be taking over the NHK Asadora slot perhaps? I can't believe I am excited over a Huang Xiaoming series. But the trailer looks HDTV and looks epic.

At least something to look forward to.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

[Tech stuff] My Ipad with iOS7


This is not my Ipad Lock Screen. This is taken elsewhere.

UPDATES - 25.09.2013
Added a very important how-to at the bottom aka 12. Unable to connect to server to accept new iCloud terms and conditions

PREVIOUSLY POSTED ON 21.09.2013
Yeah I just upgraded my Ipad with the new iOS7 and the first thing I noticed is my eyes hurt. So bloody bright!! But there are some great features such as the control centre. However I find myself having difficulty in swiping up to reveal the control centre but no difficulty in swiping down to reveal the notification centre. Why? I don't know. I was still learning the functions of iOS6 but good news for iOS7 is since I was still learning I can basically discard everything and start again. Closing apps is made easier ONLY if you know how. I didn't, so I had to google. Why can't Apple just make closing apps a special button somewhere very easy to access? If you don't know how, just double click the home button, scroll to the app you want closed, just touch the screenshot of the app (NOT the icon!) and swipe up gently. Closed. But to reach that stage I had to google. So far I can't add or delete buttons to control centre and with Apple's obsession with control over control buttons, I doubt they will add that feature soon. After all they must have considered the options! But the brightness is the worst. Just too bubblegum you know? And I notice a slight lag everytime I switch screen orientation and mine is Ipad 4! A bit slower, clunkier but not too terrible.

Frankly if you have older Ipads (not Retina Display) I will say don't upgrade. It will be a downgrade for you since you will find your system much much slower. The only change I can see is the look, the feel and yes overall stuff which frankly is aesthetic. Some may like the previous way to closing apps better and can live without the command centre feature. I can't turn back since I upgraded but I think I can get used to the changes. Except the brightness. Maybe I should try inverting the colour.

UPDATE
I have a few must-haves features in this new iOS 7 and you may like to know how to turn them on or off;

1. Close the apps
Like I described above, it used to be double click the home button, then hold onto any icon until you see the X appears and they're wiggling the click on the X to close the app. Now it it simply double click the home button, see that your home screen will become smaller which you can flick left and right to see the smaller home screen for the opened apps. Go to the app you want closed, touch the screencapture (not the icon!), swipe up gently and it will close as in disappear from the screen.

2. Opening the Control Centre
At the bottom, swipe up gently and it will open. If once nothing happens, do it again, but gently. Sometimes it just doesn't open.

3. Opening the notification centre
Same as before and same as no. 2 above except now at the top swipe downwards. This is somehow easier to open than the control centre.

4. Dynamic wallpapers
Which when you tilt your Ipad, the background wallpaper seems to move. Go to Settings > Wallpapers & Brightness >  Choose Wallpapers > choose Dynamic and any of the designs in there. Apparently you can make your own.

5. Stop the tilting icons
I suppose this is new useless feature? where if in homescreen with icons you tilt your ipad left or right you will see a slight tilt of the icons as well. I hate this feature. I read it drains battery also. So to switch it off, go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Reduce Motion > turn to On. Note, this does not stop the tilting wallpapers.

6. Close access to Control Centre when in Lock Screen
I read there can be security breach. I don't like to add passcode to my device and I don't want anyone to be able to access my stuff through my Control Centre even with passcode which Apple is fixing. So until the bug is fixed, to close such access, go to Settings > Control Center > slide to left the button  Access on Lock Screen. However to be able to access Control Centre in home screen, slide the Access Within Apps button to right (which is by default that position anyway).

7. Missing Screen Orientation button in Control Centre
That was the first thing I noticed when I swiped upwards, opened my Control Centre, the middle there were 5 buttons where the last one on the right should be Lock Screen Oritentation button (Landscape or Portrait mode which you can do the same function using the right side top button of your device to lock or unlock your orientation). I panicked. Maybe my update was half done? Maybe this or that. Googled a lot and only ONE article mentioned this after like going through 6 articles.

So it is this. You can change the buttons in Control Centre but you CAN change this 5th button between Lock Screen Orientation button or Mute button. Mine was showing mute/unmute sound button. So what to do?

Go to Settings > scroll down to USE SIDE SWITCH TO : > if you choose Lock Rotation, then your Control Centre will show the mute button as 5th option (and your side switch button will be used for the Lock Rotation) and if you choose Mute, then like everyone's example in the articles, it is the switch orientation button (and your side switch button will be used for mute/unmute function). Personally I am used to side switch for orientation so I am using my control centre for mute/unmute. Kinda panicked because I felt kiasu I suppose. "Why everyone has it and I don't" sort of mentality.

8. Accessibility shortcut
This may be in the old iOS 6 but I never found out until now/ This is great feature. Triple lick your home button and a menu will pop up  and you cab choose Invert Colors, etc. Just choose any of the listed function (very limited)  in Settings > General > Accessibility Shortcut. Pity so limited choices.

9. Unlimited apps per folder
It used to be limited apps per folder. Meaning you can actually drag your icon to another icon and create a folder which you can name!! But in iOS 6 you can only add so much into one folder hence I got TWO Games folder. Now in this new one, you can drag unlimited icons into a folder and the folder itself has the page function much like your homescreen. Personally I love this feature more than Control Center because I rarely use those buttons anyway. If Control Center allows me to change the buttons, I will say awesome! Now not so much. Anyway this unlimited apps per folder is awesome! And good for organisation. I hate pages and pages of homescreen. This way is more organised. But beware, if you want to move an icon out of the folder, DO NOT use the X button because that means deleting your app. Just hold onto it long until you see the X, do not click it and just drag it out of the folder. Done!

10. Screen too bright!
Yeah, so tooooooo bright. So maybe invert the colours? If you have configured as per point 8 above, it is as simple as triple click Home button and choose invert colors. But after a while kinda too dark.

11. Where is the Search function?
Simplified as well, but only if you know how to find it. At homescreen, swipe downward anywhere and there it is, the search function and the keyboard.

12. Unable to connect to server to accept new iCloud terms and conditions
Oh a big headache. When you can't turn on iCloud you can't save and do whatever iCloud does for your Ipad. So how? I googled, found a solution where I am to download the Find My Friends app and then sign in and you can agree to iCloud new terms from there and all functionality resolved. Simple eh? NOT! Didn't work for me! Some said Reset Ipad. Didn't work. Agree to the terms via Facetime. Didn't work! The only thing that worked for me? Actually going to Settings > iCloud > Delete Account AND THEN sign in again and voila, all functionality back on! Try this!

I notice however battery life is going fast with some features turned on! Half an hour and 3% gone and I am not doing anything with it except Animated Background is turned on. Insane!

Now what new feature I want in the soon to be coming update to iOS 7? I mean it is inevitable! Well...

a. Ability to control what buttons I want for my control centre.

b. Ability to choose the folder background color in Home screen. I don't think I can do that right now.

c. A faster shortcut to close Apps, like all opened Apps. Like one button in Control Center which says  "Close all apps". That would be heaven sent, battery life saving and faster working device.

d. Video player can play ALL types of codecs/videos without having to BUY one that can.

e.  Every ipad preinstalled with "Guide to Ipad and iOS 7" in iBooks because frankly I am still discovering the functions. This is good because Ipad is extensive and bad because frustrating.

f. Ability to change the font type and colour of the font of anywhere in the device, like how I can do the same for my text in iBooks.

Anyway one best thing about my Ipad? I got myself a bluetooth keyboard and voila! Notebook! Laptop! Love that! More so I bought those sorta like keyboard cover looking keyboard so my Ipad is a laptop minus the ability to do what laptop does usually. But since I use my ipad to read, write, play games and watching movies (FULL HD!!) whilst lying on my bed, I don't care.

I don't care much for Apple products but I must say, Ipad with Retina Display is awesome. I love it for its elegance, simplicity and so many yet to be discovered functions. I hate it because I had to google for it.

By the way I have a feeling Steve Jobs would have hated the new update and the new iphones. If he wanted cheaper Iphones or pastel looking iphones, he would have done so. I think he will say "These... are!NOT!ELEGANT!AT!ALL!!!!! You have absolutely no taste!!".

If you're looking to buy an Ipad, take my advice;

1. Buy the one with Retina Display. It makes a huge difference!

2. If you have budget for 16GB, borrow money to get at least 32GB because honestly, you can't upgrade the space so save yourself some headache.

3. Buy the White colour. Very elegant!

4. Between Wifi and Wifi + Cellular, unless your place is full of Wifi and hotspots, always get the one with Cellular as well, buy a cheap data plan and be rest assured when you're at a no wifi place, you can still check your gmail.

5. Always download and install your apps via your computer/laptop via iTunes because you don't want to waste your data plan. This includes any upgrade in iOS and whatever.

6. Do NOT download Candy Crush. You will be so obsessed with it!

7. Get yourself a Big Card or Debit Card, use that for your itunes purchases. You can control how much you spend instead of using the Credit Card. Make sure you limit the amount in your Debit Card.

8. Set up a difficult to type password so that you won't be tempted to buy buy buy.

9. Buy National Geographic, download to your Ipad and be amazed by the interactive magazine. Felt like in Harry Potter and Hogwarts!

10. There are plenty of FREE apps but there are some worth buying and is cheap, some games also free or cheaper. Remember to subscribe to itunes Newsletter. Some great bargain apps almost every day!

AND

11. I bought the expensive Ipad Smart Case which is great and protects my Ipad. I love it. But it is expensive. It is great if you like to read and watch videos because it is easy to grip and hold. But if you're into typing, maybe those cover with keyboard will  be better. Since I like holding the Ipad, the Smart Case is best suited for me.

Ok, that's about it. Any awesome feature in Ipad that you think I should know? Do share! Like I said, I am still discovering the functions.

Sin upon sins

Last night I was driving, big road, got humps, at night, I was doing 40km/h I think, not too fast, traffic left and right when suddenly I saw a white cat running past in close proximity which I missed but suddenly out came a dog, I think a small dog or maybe a big puppy and I remember "BAM!" but not too much, since I can't brake in full in time or avoid it since I would have hit the cat. I think maybe I got the dog but maybe the dog escaped. Went back home, parked and there was my car, left side front bumper sort of knocked outward and scratched. Quite heavy duty damage for a small dog. So my guess is I did hit that dog. And thinking I had to change the entire bumper I cursed that dog because I can't afford such high expenses. An hour later I calmed down, told my sister who asked me gravely "Is the dog ok?" and I was pissed so basically I cursed the dog again. Another hour later my same sister asked me gravely "You sure it was not some kid?" and I did thought about it; unless it was a 1 foot midget or a baby crawling in the middle of the street with super fast 4 legs, nope. It may not have been a dog but was certainly not some kid, or midget. Moreover, if it was, would the car at my back not chase me down or honk me? No, it was a brown looking big puppy or small dog. At night I wondered about the dog. I rarely use that road to go home but I wanted to go to Pasar Malam. If I had not gone to pasar malam, then I wouldn't have that guilt that I do now. Next day I went to a car shop and asked how much the repair costs; bang back the bumper into place is RM100-00. Ok, sounds ok. I am not going to argue with the cost. Repaint here and there slightly? RM150-00. Wow, expensive but then I am not going to argue with the cost, again. So overall damage? RM250-00 which I can hardly afford since I have other obligations. But better than shelling out thousands to replace the bumper. Fixer said I don't need to replace whole bumper. In fact at night the damage looked vast but in the morning, it looked slight, but still not that slight. I can only get it repaired on Saturday so for the next few days, my car will bear the guilty look. Anyway the guy also asked me "What happened to the dog?" and frankly I do not know. Came the next sensible question; "You couldn't avoid?" and I said frankly "If I avoided the dog, I would have hit the cat. If I didn't hit the cat, I would have hit the car next lane. If I stopped, the car at the back may or may not brake in time" which in other words, hitting the dog was a small price to pay compared to the bigger cost of the car behind, opposite lane and god forbid, the cat. All I can remember is the dog was either chasing the cat or was inexperienced in crossing the road. Routinely I saw dead dogs by the side of the roads elsewhere, but I never knew the impact could have caused such damage to my front bumper, again a slight damage but still a damage that requires RM250-00 to fix. Just now I was again thinking about the dog and I doubted myself; "OMG, maybe it was a kid?!" but again the reaction of fellow road users tell me it wasn't a kid. And my eyes told me it was a brown big puppy or small brown dog. Should I have hit the cat instead? Maybe less damage. Should I feel sorry for the dog? My car looks in a slight sorry state. Frankly, if you ask me, deep down, I don't feel sorry for the dog. I felt sorry for my wallet. Everytime something good happens, like some extra cash or something, something terrible happens, mostly to my car. Only this time, it involves a life. Yes, a dog is a life even if a lesser life since no one cares, except for my sister and the fixer who asked "Is the dog ok?"

Frankly I hope he is not. Because I feel like hunting down the dog and skin him alive. Aside from evil thoughts, seriously though, I never knew there can be such an impact. RM250-00, gone. But you know thank god it wasn't a child. Stupid stupid dog.

UPDATE
I think the dog survived. Did not see any carcass nearby and KL is not exactly famous for fast cleaning up.

Monday, September 23, 2013

[UPDATES] New review

New review! And not , it isn't TITS 2 but rather AAE! No! Not All About Eve but Always And Ever, that one starring Bobby and Esther. Anyway pending grammar check so you're reading 1st draft. Contents are fixed, just a bit of fixing here and there which will take time!

I am still figuring how to arrange my Reviews Database so I apologise for the mess. But how's the header in here? Ok?

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

[ER] Bu Bu Jing Xin / 步步惊心 [TV/China][2011][Re-watch]

This is a collection of various commentaries and opinions about this series under one post. If you see this at the top, this means it is updated. For more under this post, do click the Read More button. I welcome your comments and your thoughts as well so do use Post A Comment and do indicate which episode you're talking about. Since this is a threaded comment system, you can reply directly to any given comments you wish to reply to. When this is done, I will move this to Reviews Database. For previous posts on the same subject with more write ups, pictures, buying links and more, do check out the Archive Blog.

 

SOME BASIC INFO
Title: 步步惊心 / Bu Bu Jing Xin
English title: Scarlet Heart (Nobody calls it this title! NOBODY!)
Also known as: Startling By Each Step
Broadcast network: Hunan TV

Produced by : Tangren
Episodes: 35
Year release: 2011
Original writing (novel): Bu Bu Jing Xin (步步惊心) by Tong Hua (桐华)
Original OST : Download here coming soon as old link is dead link

CAST-CHARACTER-HISTORY

I will add to this list in terms of links to write ups on the real counterparts as I go along. Most are real.

Liu Shi Shi as Maertai Ruo Xi / Zhang Xiao
Nicky Wu as Yin Zhen/Yong Zheng (4th Prince)(Real)
Kevin Cheng as Yin Si (8th Prince)
Yuan Hong as Yin Xiang (13th Prince)
Lin Geng Xin as Yin Ti (14th Prince)
Han Dong as Yin Tang (9th Prince)
Ye Zu Xin as Yin'e (10th Prince)
Damian Lau as Kangxi Emperor (Real)
Zhang Lei as Yin Reng (Crown Prince)
Chen Jing Yu (陈镜宇) as Yin Zhi (3rd Prince)
Wang Xiao Dong (王小东) as Yin Qi (5th Prince)
Annie Liu as Maertai Ruo Lan
Shi Xiao Qun as Gorolo Ming Hui
Liu Yu Xin as Gorolo Ming Yu
Guo Zhen Ni as Lu Wu
Dai Chun Rong as Consort De
Liu Jie (刘洁) as Consort Liang
Mu Ting Ting as Lady Ulanara
Lu Mei Fang (陆梅芳) as Lady Nian (ep.27)
Deng Li Min as Li De Quan
Cao Xin Yue as Qiao Hui
Ye Qing as Yu Tan
Wang Jia Hui as child Yu Tan
Zhou Yan Cheng (周彦呈) as Wang Xi
Kang Ming Tong (康铭桐) as Yun Xiang
Hu Zhong Hu (胡中虎) as Gao Wu Yong
Qi Qing Lin as Li Fu
Shen Bao Ping as Zhang Qian Ying
Guo Xiao Ting as Suwan Guwalgiya Min Min
Ba Sen as Prince Suwan Guwalgiya
Zheng Kai as Irgen Gioro Zuo Ying
Chai Wei as Cheng Huan
Qu Ao Hui as Hong Shi
Xing Han Qing as Nian Geng Yao
Zhao Jia Lin (赵家林) as Longkodo
Gao Sen (高森) as Li Guang Di
Lian Te Yue (连特约) as Physician He
Ma Tian Yu as Huang Di (guest)

READING ESSENTIALS
- Series of excellent opinions at Koala's Playground (scroll down to Bu Bu Jing Xin)

18.09.2013 : WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE 7
I skipped episodes 3, 4 and 5 and zoom straight to episodes 6 and 7. I find it  strange that I can't remember certain scenes but most are still fresh in my memory. Such as creepy brother in law aka 8th prince making a move on the young sister of his 2nd wife, and that is Ruoxi by the way. Still creepy to me. Also the scene where Ruoxi was taught how to ride a horse by the strictest teacher, 4th prince and I truly didn't remember the aftermath until I rewatch and there was Ruoxi confessing that she remembered everything 4th said and done during that funny lesson. Which means he was memorable to her. Also she remembered his answer is "Living in the moment" when she posed to him a question of someone being in an unwakeable dream in I believe Episode 2. She actually quoted him in these episodes. I never noticed these little things until now! The signs are all there; she never truly loved 8th and she was not yet falling for 4th now but there were indications. At the same time she seems so reluctant to consider 8th as prospective husband, I believe in part because she doesn't want to share a husband but mostly because you know, I think she too feels it is creepy. 

Anyway these 2 episodes boasted some of the best Kevin Cheng scenes. I love how he lit up when Ruolan agreed to ride a horse, I love how he described meeting Ruolan to Ruoxi, you can see this was a man deeply in love with his wife but alas, his wife I think resented him, rather than pure hatred. That scene was a little sad as well because I remember quite clearly how he described seeing her for the first time, and the words he used were very romantic, very poetic and descriptive. When Ruolan denied him yet again (I believe she did not deny the conjugal visits but I suppose she was like a dead log of wood in bed), he decided to pursue his happiness in her lookalike that is Ruoxi. I believe he never loved Ruoxi as deeply as he loved Ruolan. Ruoxi was a substitute much as 8th was a stepping stone to 4th for Ruoxi although not deliberately. Love that scene and Kevin was wonderful in there; those dreamy eyes, small smiles, etc.

And I realise I can't stand Ruolan's stand in all these. She knew in her heart it wasn't really 8th's fault. Her father was the ultimate bad guy. She too in her own way contributed to her lover's death by her cold attitude to 8th in the beginning. She was banking on a guy whom she knew she will have no future with because her father would not allow it. She was actually married off to I feel the best of the princes in terms of temperament, looks and nature. But she was never appreciative of that fact. She mourned for her dead lover and because of that, in her own way as 8th puts it, she too was punishing him. At that point of time, it was 5 years of marriage. Minghui, the 1st wife aka difujin of 8th came into the family later and already has a son. I believe 8th had more wives because one scene one of the maids or someone mentioned about 8th's wives that was beyond just Minghui and Ruolan. He can't just have 2 wives. Same goes for everyone except for 10th as he was a late bloomer. Anyway Ruolan is too stubborn to realise happiness was within her reach and she survives by wallowing in her grief for someone she never had a chance with, at all. How silly. Poor 8th. I felt for him when I first watched this series and I feel for him more even now. I can understand why he looks to Ruoxi because Ruoxi looks like Ruolan. One scene, much earlier when he and 10th took Ruoxi to ride horses and he looked at Ruoxi expectantly when she was told to get up on the horse and she admitted she doesn't know how to ride one and I swear I saw a crestfallen 8th. That was how obvious and yet subtle Kevin's performance was.

Basically these 2 episodes I watched show to me how a good role can benefit an actor usually known to be mediocre. Kevin's movements (without much energy which translates well into being soft spoken and well mannered, not a sign of weakness), the way he looks, the way he stares, etc. Fantastic stuff. Compare that to Nicky's 4th prince, look at the way he walks, like BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! with force and purpose, the way he stares, usually with skepticism. Again fantastic stuff.

Problem is our dear Ruoxi herself. I find the way she jumps in character is as jarring as the time jump in this series. Oh yes, I still dislike her or Cecilia's performance. As much as I detested 14th's chauvinistic ways but then he was a man of his time. I also hate how he distrusts his own full brother and goes running after a half brother. Lin Gengxin is wonderful for his debut performance by the way.

Damien Lau is weak as Kangxi, mainly because I don't expect Kangxi to behave that way.

Anyway nothing is as jarring as the time jump, like I said above. I hate how the time just moves forward to 2 or 3 years later without any indication except for falling leaves and minute change of seasons. But again I now noticed the little things; like how 8th ignored Minghui for probably 2 years after she botched his arrangement for Ruoxi in the palace. I would have wished for narration of how much time actually flies.

I will be skipping episodes 8 and 9 since I don't want to watch the worst 2 episodes in this series; where 14th goes into disguise and Kangxi is the world's biggest hypocrite in light of how he will in the end treat 13th as opposed to how he reacted to the news of a dying son, 18th prince I think. 





17.09.2013 : WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE 2
I am watching Bu Bu Jing Xin, again after a long time. But since I know the episodes by heart, I will be skipping about 3 episodes so that I don't need to go through those draggy moments in the beginning. My opinion of the first 2 episodes is still the same. I love them, costume, dialogue, everything. I am however still not happy with Cecilia Liu's performance, then or now. If it had been a better actress, perhaps this series will be even more memorable than just a pretty young girl surrounded by hot looking princes, most of them much better actors, 2 of them giving breakthrough performances. I have yet to reach Damien Lau's appearance as Kangxi so I can't say I feel the same way as I did before but since I am a staunch fan of the CCTV series which Bu Bu Jing Xin was clearly inspired by, that is Yong Zheng Wang Chao's version of Kangxi, I don't think my feelings have changed much at all. Now, the great news with watching this series this time is I found a good fansub version online. There is even a crappier version in terms of video but excellent English subs, thanks to Mediacorp, Singapore in Youtube. The bad news is the English title, Scarlet Heart is still crappy. But to some fans, perhaps that title is apt to describe Ruoxi's indecisive heart. Or rather her heart is decisive but her mind is never decisive. The sequel which I hope is not a direct sequel is coming soon, to milk the honey rather than to create a sequel worthy of this series. I have always hoped this series will end the story of Ruoxi/ Zhang Xiao at the end of episode 35. More poetic, a final end to a miserable beginning. Yes, I still hate Zhang Xiao/Ruoxi. Anyway let's see if my perspective change as I watch this series, again. Sometimes it will.

Anyway still love the various introduction to the princes, especially 4th Prince. Very mysterious and all that. Can hardly believe this was in 2011!! And guess what? I just realised I never wrote a review for this series! How can that be?! Sacrilege! I must rectify that, so just assume this [O] aka Opinion as a semi review!

And here is my review for the first 2 episodes.

I am still confused if Zhang Xiao sees Ruoxi with her own face or another face. We do know she was mid 20s and Ruoxi was 16 years old. And unlike the crap known as Gong, she did not get transported wholesale. She was in fact electrocuted and her soul left her Zhang Xiao body in Beijing and traveled back in time into Ruoxi's body. You can say her consciousness got transported if you don't believe in the soul thing. So I was very confused, even now, when she saw herself in the mirror, as she was shocked by the length of her hair, who she saw? Was Ruoxi her lookalike? But she was never shocked at the fact that even if they were lookalike, she was a good 10 years younger than her modern self. The book I believe addressed that; clearly she was someone else since in the book she was 13 years old. But the series? Skipped. Not one word.

I also would have loved a bit more background on her modern self. In fact since the entire series is her modern sensibilities versus her ancient practicalities, it would have been nice to see how she was back in modern world. We see a tiny glimsp of a modern independent woman pissed off with her cheating boyfriend. But that was it. So along the way I wouldn't blame you if you kinda get detached from the fact that this girl time traveled.I also don't like the fact that her modern sensibilities so readily accepted the fact that she time traveled, all within 1st 10 minutes of the 1st episode. There was no questions, no doubt, no denial, no slow acceptance but straight into "Oh yeah I time traveled because I got hit by a car and got electrocuted in the process!" I also feel perhaps a bit on how she adapts to life in the past would have been great instead of the short snippets of crying for ice creams, air conditioners and what nots. How about toilets? Bathing? All personal hygiene stuff? Would have been nice to see her struggled at life in the past, even if she is living as the sister of a well married and well to do wife to the 8th prince. Of course the book may have skipped this part but then a bit more on this would have made me sympathise with Ruoxi rather than feeling a bit overwhelmed that she was not overwhelmed at all. I feel one episode of modern world, 2 episodes of denial and then launch into the whole adapting to lifestyle in the past for 2 episodes would have made this series more complete.

I am still annoyed by Cecilia's performance of the immature or child like Zhang Xiao when in the modern world she wasn't so child like, at least not for the 8 minutes or so. Back in Qing time, suddenly not only was she running after rabbits because she was bored, she ran after the rabbits in an age appropriate child like wonder, same like how she ran to her sister, Ruolan. I find that very inconsistent. I feel there should be an old aura to her already, after all I do believe at the start her soul is same age as 4th prince and she is older than the rest of the princes.

That aside, I noticed some details in the 10th prince birthday celebration party in episode 2. Like there was a 12th prince who had some dialogue but disappeared later on and there was another unnamed and unnumbered prince IN yellow so he must have been higher ranked than 4th? Except everyone deferred to 4th so I wonder who that young man was? And I love how everyone deferred to 4th. The hierarchy is clear.

Other than that, not much to say so far. I still don't like Zhang Xiao/Ruoxi.

Monday, September 16, 2013

[Funn Stuff] A moment of kindness, a lifetime of gratitude

I was reading Mail Online when I came across this article about a moving Thai advert which is really about mobile phones. The comments were positive and so I watched, without sound but thankfully with English subtitles. I gotta admit, I was moved. It is like those pay it forward situation except to the man who did the act of kindness. Very nice advert and I love the tagline;

Giving is the best communication
For me, I summarise it as "A moment of kindness, a lifetime of gratitude". Does this happen in real life? I do think so. The thing about truly compassionate kind people is they do kind stuff they rarely publicise it. Those who repay rarely goes public about it. But I am sure it happens.

Anyway, the video featuring the phone company True Move H.



Humidifier? Dehumidifier? Purifier? Ioniser? Colour changer?

I have a .. or rather I had a humidifier which blew fuse. An expensive one and yes, made in China. In fact it was a China branded goods. When it worked, it was nice. I do not know to what effect but it felt good to have white smoke blowing out of that 2L thing. Like I said, it blew fuse. Stopped working. So now I am on the hunt for another humidifier except I googled and found a bunch of terms which is suitable for my use but each is a separate element.

Humidifier
Dehumidifier
Purifier
Ioniser
Colour Changer

The only 2 things I understand at the time of googling were colour changer and that humi and dehumi is never in one product. The more I read the more I feel Air Purifier is what I need. My air cond got ioniser, I think. Air Purifier is expensive and I got one for my car which is not cheap. I don't care about colour changer. I don't want to wake up in the middle of the night and see some freakish glowing thing on my computer table. So I am sorta back to humidifier except then I found products which are Humidifier Purifier Ioniser Colour Changer. Yes, ALL in one. Now I am confused. But I suppose all humidifiers are air purifier with ioniser technology in it? But air purifiers are not humidifiers?

Should I even think about colour changer? Because that's the only thing that made sense when I was writing this post.

I still need something to clean the air in my tiny room. But all are expensive. I may end up buying the same made in China branded product that blew the fuse. 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Almost cheated!

Yesterday, of all days, 11.09.2013 I was shocked into speechlessness. Not very rare but quite scary stuff. Early morning I received a call from a number, 0326163822 on my handphone and the Malay guy introduced himself as an Inspector from Commercial Crime Division at Bukit Aman, Kuala Lumpur. Head office. Anyway he said my identity card number was used in some cheating case in Hk involving Citibank and 4 other Malaysians. He gave me 2 Chinese names and asked if I  knew the names and I said no. Of course I was a bit rattled at first because come on, not everyday you get a call from a policeman, more so someone claiming to be working with Interpol. And IC numbers are easy to compromise and he did make a convincing case when he asked if I lost my IC before, if I ever applied to banks with copies of my IC which is yes since who doesn't? Anyway I became a bit suspicious since I don't even have a bank account with Citibank, more so in HK. I asked when was that account opened and he said May 2013 and I said I have not been to HK for I can't remember how many years! So he gave me a telephone number, an international number and to call Mongkok Police Station and ask for a police called Lo Keong. I asked when I should call and he said immediately, if not once the warrant of arrest is issued, I will be arrested. He gave me his handphone number, to call him if I have enquiries and he put down the phone. Thoroughly convincing. Almost panicking I called my sisters and then I sat down and thought for a while. The story doesn't match. I was never in HK during that time. I never have any account with Citibank. I did not submit my IC to any banks more so Citibank in May 2013. Earlier maybe. I did lose my IC like more than a decade ago. Who hasn't lose their IC at least once? But the killer is this. Why would I use my IC to open an account in HK? Shouldn't it be my passport? And also, if such a huge case involving Interpol and what nots, how come I am not invited to Bukit Aman at an appointed date to give my statement instead of just calling straight to HK? So I called the number I see on my phone and indeed it is the Bukit Aman number but the person confirmed that there is no such inspector or such division. He asked what's the matter and I said someone called and said I was in some cheating case and he immediately asked; "Hong Kong issit?" and I said yes and he told me this was in the news, there were some calls about this and he told me not to worry about my IC being compromised and what nots. I asked how come the number used is the same number to Bukit Aman and he said the number was hijacked. I asked why not put this in bold at their website so that people know and he laughed I think when he said it was in the news. I asked if I should make a police report and he said no need. And then I called Citibank because I realised I am their card holder (and why is it always Citibank?!) and again they confirmed the same thing and told me to ignore those calls. And guess what? That fraudster actually called me 3 more times! I ignored all the calls.

So scary! How convincing, until you calm down and think. Of course police do call you but if they want a statement out of you which involves an international case, they would have set up an appointment at their police station or they will come to visit you and not like call the police in that country straight. And my sister did asked; "Have you ever heard of such a diligent policeman?" and well, she has a point.

Anyway people, if you got such a call, don't panic. They will know your IC, not such a big deal. Don't ever call the number they ask you to call. If any, call back the line you got the call from to confirm, and not the handphone. It could be real but remember, anyone asking you to meet privately or call somewhere or give account details and all are always fake! And if they do drop by for a visit, always insist on their IDs and badge and call Bukit Aman first to confirm the identity before talking or following them.

Quite a scare though. How come me? Why me?

Monday, September 9, 2013

[NEWS] My upcoming review for Triumph In The Skies II

I have thought of a great quote for my upcoming review of Triumph In The Skies II which I posted here at Jaynestars. It is... 

Put it this way; I love Sam but I don’t want an invigilator as my boyfriend 24/7 and someone who disrespects me, like as in I am good enough to share a bed with him BUT not good enough to share a cockpit with him.

Yeap! Willl add that in along with the hundreds of lines I have yet to write. Stay tuned!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

[FAQ] DON'T PANIC!! All about what & where in this new layout

UPDATES - 05.03.2013
Start! Panicking! I seriously can't decide where to put that bloody comments sidebar, below, by the side, etc. The reason being since transferring all my posts to my Archive Blog, I am only left with this one post and so it just looks so weird with everything crammed by the side. So I put them below and it was so long. Then I added handwriting by the side (seriously love that!) but once I have like 5 long posts in this page, then all those bottom fixed posts wouldn't look good at all. So I am stuck. I will just shift them by the side for a while. But basically I really like this look even if you have to scroll and scroll and scroll to get to the Labels and Archives. But how's the text? Can read? I hate those blogs with tiny fonts and in grey colour, can't even read anything. So I hope mine is at least large enough for you to see without zooming in. I like the background. I was torn between a table or a brick wall, but in the end I like my old Langit layout (not documented - arghhhhh!!) where I got a half eaten doughnut there plus cookies and all. Very messy table, same concept like my All About Masha blog. So I am going for that. I will throw in a pen or two. In fact if this is my real table, it is 10 pens and 20 and I can never find my pen. My working table is like Bermuda Triangle. Can never find anything. Anyway I am just glad I got the basics done. I seriously wanted to post something about how I "ZHANG" Yu Zheng very much but I decided not to, not today because believe me, I don't need to pick and choose a date for such a post. It is so easy to hate him. Can be any day, any hour, any minute. So I decided to just write this a little longer so that my 1st post for this new blog is not so weird. Ok, mission accomplished! Seriously though, I really love the threaded comment system. So clean.

P/S Line height for paragraph is weird. Will fix that.

P P/S Fixed. 


ORIGINALLY POSTED ON 03.09.2013

DON'T PANIC!!! 

I didn't lose the contents to some virus attack or some hacker. This is a cleansing time for me, by moving all the clutter to my Archive Blog so that I can really restart with a better look and clearer labels instead of the old one. Basically the structure is the same as always. However just in case you are wondering where is everything, do read on. As usual this blog is work in progress but I am  very happy with the clean look. Hopefully it loads fast enough for you without the script problem thing. By the way I checked using Google Chrome and Firefox. Depending on your screen resolution, the only difference is font size. Everything else looks good on my side.

Anyway do read on for a brief explanation on what's new in this layout.




UPDATES
03.09.2013
Created page, added questions 1 to 14

1. WHERE ARE ALL THE OLD POSTS?
I have moved all of them to the Archive Blog. In this present blog you will find all posts AFTER 1st September 2013. For all posts prior to that (which may go all the way back to 2003!), they're all in the Archive Blog. It is very messy right now so to make life easier for you, you can either use the search function at the Archive Blog, wait a little longer whilst I clean up the layout (I made the mistake of uploading an unfinished template!!) or best way ever, use the Table Of Contents (2nd & 3rd links) which you can find in the navigation bar above or .... after this sentence!


What is in Archive Blog? Like my rather popular Legend of Zhen Huan/Empresses In The Palace rant, Bu Bu Jing Xin post and more! I will make individual pages for those posts in Reviews Database but not very soon. For the time being, you can also use the Search Box at the top of the page. Quite accurate!

2. WHERE ARE ALL THE REVIEWS
All in Reviews Database. You can search there or use the Table of Contents page to see reviews by labels (such as my name and all my reviews), titles (alphabetically) or by dates (descending or ascending).

3. ARE THERE OTHER BLOGS CREATED BY YOU?
Yes there is! Check out Dedicated Blogs

4. I'M INTO HISTORY. ANY WRITE UPS ABOUT HOW THIS BLOG CAME ABOUT?
Got!!!! But an old one and still relevant. Check out About ...

5. WHAT CAN I FIND IN THE SIDEBARS?
Plenty! From top commenters to recent posts and more, I will be adding more as I go along. Since this blog is having a fresh start, there won't be much content for now. But knowing me, it won't be long before I fill this blog with pages and pages of ramblings. Just for your info, I will be adding direct links to any Episodic Thoughts I will be doing. Basically I want this main blog of mine as a gateway and yet still personal, still familiar. So do check out the sidebars because there are some major info about various related stuff there. EXCEPT gossips and entertainment news. I don't do that. Maybe I will add one later, linked to Jaynestars perhaps. 

6. WHAT IS THE SHOUTBOX FOR?
Impromptu spur of the moment comments and reports of dead links or some exciting links or general questions meant for me. If you want to reply long to a post of mine, if it is a review, go to that review, if it is a post, find the post and use Post A Comment link.

7. WHAT'S THE COMMENT SYSTEM LIKE?
Totally awesome! It is threaded comment system which means you can write an original comment, someone reply, you reply to that reply. However it allows only for I believe 1 nested reply thingy? At least way way way better than in the past where you're replying to some 10 posts above. Also since the comments are now numbered, if you don't know the name you're replying to, just say you're replying to comment no. so and so.

By the way if you're a Blogger user, do log in so your avatar will so. If not, all default anonymous poster will have the following avatar:-










If you're a blogger user without your own avatar, your avatar will be:-











Or it could be something else if I can something funnier. Point is why not use your own one eh?

8. WILL THERE BE NEW REVIEWS?
Yes, but I am not writing actively. Same goes for Episodic Thoughts.

9. CAN I SUBMIT REVIEWS TO YOU?
Of course! Just make sure they're in textpad or txt format, your own opinion, title, brief info, production details and cast info included plus poster if it is a new title that is not in Reviews Database. I need your valid email address as well. Email all these to funnlim(AT)gmail(DOT)com but make sure all attachments are virus free, if not I will ban you for life. By the way you be your own editor.

10. HOW CAN I FOLLOW THIS BLOG? DON'T WANNA CHECK EVERY DAY!
Follow by E-mail of course! Or subscribe to feed! All in the sidebars (or top/bottom bars).

11. WILL YOU STOP CHANGING LAYOUT AND JUST COMPLETE THIS ONE?
Yes my lord, my queen, my emperor, my empress, I shall. I really like this layout which is quite easy to adapt. Now let me think about the header!!


12. FUNN, WHERE CAN I FIND YOU ONLINE? OTHER THAN HERE?
Check out my Dedicated Blogs page. Sometimes I am inworld in Second Life (very rare) but mostly I am most active (and sometimes my inner beyatch is unleashed there due to some really bad experience) at Jaynestars.com. Quite a fun place, if you can stomach the hardliners which are all ok except for the few rogue ones and of course those overly diplomatic ones. But hey, opinion is the variety of life! That's why I love it there.

13. I HAVE QUESTIONS!
Use Post A Comment, bookmark this post and I will reply. 

14. UHHHH, WHAT'S THE CONTACT FORM FOR?
Just in case you wanna go personal and private with me. Who knows? Maybe you have something to say like a whole litany of curses against me.