What are you taking for your “flu” that won’t go away?

I went to the doctor’s yesterday for the sixth time in 2 months, and he doesn’t seem too concerned that I’ve made so many trips for the same problem. He thinks I’ve been infected by several different strains of flu, and quite possibly, with H1N1 as well.

I’ve been on three courses of an antibiotic called Klacid to try to treat a throat infection that produces green-yellow phlegm mixed with blood, but that obviously hasn’t worked that well, since I’m still getting these spasmodic coughing fits which are driving me insane.

The doctor said it was probably the same thing – seasonal flu, and explained away my concern that I (and Naomi) have been sick since December by saying that “flu season is from December to February”. And although he did not discount the possibility of my having a mycoplasma infection, he gave the usual drugs to ease the symptoms, and a new antibiotic to try to kill off the bug in my throat that’s making it itch so bad I cough till I think I bust a rib:

Have you had those (click on the links) drugs before? Have they worked? Are you still coughing?

This site is not SafeSurf safe

Someone tweeted yesterday afternoon that Starhub’s SafeSurf apparently blocks this site from curious young eyes.

The SafeSurf FAQ goes on to describe the service as “a “filtering” service that blocks out undesirable websites on the Internet.” OK, I can understand why some people dislike this blog, but to block a generation of minors (whose parents pay $2.50 per month for this VAS) from enjoying my occasional outbursts of profanity? I mean, come on, do you see any nude pictures on this site? Huh? Huh? Huh?

The Online Citizen gets Cassetted, but I get SafeSurfed. FML.

Worse still, I’m a Starhub Broadband (and cable and telephone) customer. WTH?

(@starhubcares has informed me that they’re looking into it – updates when available).

Update: @starhubcares tells me they’ve taken it off the banned wagon. Kids can now get here.

It would be hell if the restaurants weren’t so good

Naomi and I hadn’t spent enough time looking through what’s on offer at the Marina Bay Sands, so we were very excited to discover that ‘celebrity chefs’ had set up shop in the massive casino complex.

There’s Mario Batali, Tetsuya Wakuda, Hide Yamamoto, and Singapore’s own drink-driving Justin Quek amongst several others. And we only found this out because we were invited by a friend of Naomi’s mum’s to Hide Yamamoto’s.

We have no idea how much dinner would’ve cost if we had paid for it ourselves, but we supped from 8pm to 11pm, so you can imagine how much we enjoyed the food there.

We think the food’s good enough reason to brave the bad air (cigarette smoke lingering in the whole atrium) and desperate gambler types that hang around the giant casino and make the whole place look like the hall full of aliens in Men In Black.


Ordinarily, I wouldn't eat tuna, but then...Roasted vegetables with REAL TRUFFLE!Grilled prawnSnow crab claw in some stock thingieGrilled wagyu beefProbably the least pretty of the dishes. But I've never had spring chicken done so nicely.Awesome dessert I forgot the name of

Lib lung and prosper

This evening we took a break from eating junk food and took Naomi’s visiting cousin out to a chili crab dinner at Long Beach Dempsey. Good thing we got there early, because a little after we got there, a queue formed with several dozen families, tired from visiting and being visited, looking to get a quick crab meal as well.

At the table next to us in the “outdoor area without shelter (sans umbrella)” was a Japanese family who were convinced to order the traditional yu sheng raw fish salad. The dish arrived, and the funniest thing was that they were given instructions on how to partake of the dish by a Filipino waiter (purst, you tuss eberyting as high as you cahn with the chupstick), who also recited English translations of the Chinese idioms/proverbs/sayings/nonsense rhymes that accompany the tossing of the salad.

May your whole pummily prospurr!

And on the second day, every dog was born

The second day of the New Year is when married daughters return to their birth family’s home and spend time there. We learned of this tradition only after we got married, because previously, both Naomi’s and my family were always pretty sketchy and inconsistent with customs. We still can’t remember for sure how many oranges we’re supposed to bring when visiting, and how many we’re supposed to leave a house with.

I suspect mandarin orange farmers were the ones who came up with the give 4 take 2 back custom, cos if you did the math and did what accountants call a “contra”, a give 2 take 2 back custom would kill the orange growers’ orange rice bowl.

Sometimes we get saboed by our families, when they suddenly come up with customs we’ve never previously observed. I remember vaguely when we were in secondary school, and my parents came home with this new fangled grated carrot and radish salad with crackers and slivers of raw fish and declared we had to eat that for good luck after tossing the salad everywhere on the table.

Sometimes we argue over what customs are what, and actually resort to googling or wikipeding what to wear and what to do so we don’t offend whatever gods it is that our families have subscribed to for the New Year.

This year’s googling/wikipeding taught me that some Chinese also believe that the 2nd day of the New Year is also the birthday of all dogs. Apparently it is when these same Chinese treat dogs extra kindly, feed them well, and try not to eat them.

Also, I found out why firecrackers were banned in Singapore – in 1970, 6 people were killed and 68 injured, leading to a partial ban. In 1972, a total ban was implemented when 2 more people were killed by explosions and 2 policemen were attacked when trying to prevent people setting off crackers.

The ban has been in place with the exception of publicly sanctioned setting off of crackers. Apparently, pro-private-firecrackers’ claim that “Firecrackers Don’t Kill People. People Kill People” fell on deaf ears.