Friday, May 30, 2008

140 Years Of IWC

I was priviledged enough to be invited by Valiramgroup and IWC to an exclusive dinner at 3rd Floor Restaurant, JW Marriott a couple of days back to celebrate the Schaffhausen's 140th anniversary. In the spirit of the jubilee, we were told to come in our suits and, at the venue, given steamer hats, scarves and walking sticks to complete the 'vintage' 19th century look.

The place was packed full of enthusiastic collectors but IWC and Valiram did a smashing job of setting up the venue and ensuring everyone had a good time.

Of course, the stars of the evening were the Vintage 1868 collection of IWC watches (both in steel and platinum). I will be shooting and presenting photos of those watches laster this week. Anyway, for the full report of the event

Copyright (c) Kelvin Tan

If you can't view the report, it means that you will need a Purists login (just register for one) or you can simply look at the pics here.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Blast From My Past Pt12 - Of Bookshops And Rubber Seeds

I was thumbing my way through yesterday's Malay Mail while munching on some teriyaki salmon lunch when I came across an article/obituary on one of the most famous personalities of Malacca, Mr Lim Koh Sin. He was the owner of Lim Brothers Bookstore (at Riverside) which sadly closed in 2001 after 66 years of business. Seeing the bookshop mentioned after so long brought me a flood of memories and nostalgia. I used to crouch and squat for hours in their corridors, overlooked by stacks and stacks of books...

See the website Mr Lim's son did in honour of his father and the bookshop HERE. You can see the shelves I'm talking about.

Anyway, I used to spend precious pocket money on fantasy books (such as Choose Your Own Adventure, Lone Wolf, Way Of The Tiger and Fighting Fantasy) and Smash Hits mags as well as comics like Topper, Beano and Dandy. It was an annual affair to buy the annuals released by these comics publications. It was also an annual pilgrimage to purchase school text books and stationery here to complement our crispy new uniforms. And when I was lacking in funds, I would just read story books there - coming back time and again to finish off the books. When I was lucky, I would get books from here as a reward (from my parents and relatives) for doing well in my studies.

So it is with some sadness and fond memories when I saw the article and subsequently, the website... Lim Brothers will always be a recognized and honoured name among the current batch of working (and retired adults) born and bred in Malacca.

On another note, today on Mix FM, the DJs were talking about childhood pastimes (thank god, something worth listening to instead of the garbage they normally spew every morning). Got me to think about what we used to do with seeds from the rubber tree... in primary school, we used to gather these seeds. When you take a seed and rub it really hard and fast against a rough hard surface like tarmac or cement, the seed will get really hot. So we would have immeasurable fun taking these hot seeds and quickly finding some poor victim to touch with these seeds. As you can tell, we didn't need to have a lot to have pure clean fun!

Labels: , , , , , ,

Friday, May 23, 2008

Indy Jones And The Crystal Skull? Maybe spoilers...

It's been a long time coming... 19 years since last Lucas and Spielberg got together. I still remember having the hotdog from outside Rex Cinema in KL back in 1982 before the start of Raiders Of The Lost Ark.

And over this time, Harrison Ford got really old. In any case, is the magic still there? The theme doesn't fail to make me stifle my tears. The sound of the whip and the Bollywood-style sound effects of the punches are still there. The plane flying across the map with a trailing red line is still there. Heck, we even get a glimpse of the Ark. And Cate Blanchett is oh-so hot!

Well, I must say that I DID enjoyed the movie. Shia LaBeouf wasn't as annoying as I thought he would be. Some set pieces and scenes are amazingly spectacular (and some too fantastical to be believable - I'm not talking about the ending) but others made the movie not as chee-keck as I wanted it to be. But the green screen scenes and CGI do detract a little especially. There were homages to Sean Connery and Denholm Elliot which I thought were appropriate and brought back fond memories.

So what do you make of it?


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

A thing of beauty

Isn't foie gras just a thing of beauty? Damn sinful when done right...

Foie gras with apple slices starter at Flams.

Copyright (c) Kelvin Tan

Labels: , , , , ,

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Wesak Reflections

The past weekend has been tiring due to illness (cough, fever, etc) and a ton of work that required me back at the office (even though it's a holiday weekend).

I strive each year to at least drop by a Buddhist temple during Wesak and managed to sneak in some time to offer prayers at Wat Chetawan last evening. It's the least I can do to take a step back, breath and reflect on my recent life, my current situation and my future - at least that's what I try to do when I toll the bells and drop coins into the alms bowls at the temple.

There were a couple of things that irked me though - inconsiderate temple-goers that parked haphazardly in front of nearby residents' houses and even blocking a church gate (the temple staff had to PA several announcements to politely tell these jokers to move). Not that there was any lack of parking! Walk a bit more lah cibai!

Then, when I was waiting in line to slot in the coins at the line of Buddha statues, a few kids were pushing donors aside in some sort of stupid race. Only after I yelled, "WAIT! What the hell?!" that their parents chastised them.

*Shakes head* why must something like this happen on such a holy day? Sigh...

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Forgetting The Simplest Of Pleasures

Last night I was walking towards the car park at the old wing of 1 Utama when I saw 2 kids running past me with their parents in tow. The kids were racing to be the first at a coin ride (one of those rides where you slot in some coins and the children can sit on a train/car thingamajig for a few minutes of fun). Unfortunately for the twosome, another child arrived at the ride first and hopped on while her mom slotted in a coin for her. Undaunted, the initial siblings ran to another ride on the opposite side and jumped excitedly while looking at their parents longingly for some coins.

This got me thinking back to the times when I enjoyed such rides. 20 sen could give a child such a smile that would not go away for a while. One could even ride on Ultraman's back in some places. I remember in Yaohan Singapore (can't recall which branch) there was also a ride where I could press some buttons and the car would horn or light up. Such control over the machine was unheard of back then so we were of course fascinated!

Then again, thinking not so far back, I know some jokers who would have continued playing with those rides if it were not for the age limit. Knn...

Labels: , ,

Monday, May 05, 2008

Chopard's Turn

Was privy to view and experience the new offerings from Chopard for 2008. We were first presented with a nice overview of the boutique at Pavilion and then a short but informative presentation by Chopard. Dinner was at Kampachi (lovely and much better than my first experience of Kampachi Pavilion) and no attention to detail was spared i.e. even the disposable chopsticks were embossed with the Chopard name.

After most of the guests left, we were privy to a special viewing of the 2008 Basel releases. I was deeply impressed with the new Tourbillon with WAS (Winding Assistance System) which has been improved since last I saw it. The crank now has an ingenious locking system so that it will not slip off the crown during winding action. And then there's the lovely Strike One. But mostly, I could not take my eyes (and hands) off the Chrono One. What an impressive piece with great presence! Check them out by clicking on the photo below.

Copyright (c) Kelvin Tan

Labels: , , , , , , , , , ,

Sunday, May 04, 2008


Atari 2600
Commodore 64
Super Nintendo
Sega Saturn
Playstation 1
Sega Dreamcast
Playstation 2
Playstation 3??? ^_^

Labels: ,

Friday, May 02, 2008


I was talking to some friends over dinner last week and one of them told me that one of his office colleagues has heard of me through my blog. Seems like this reader could repeat my interests from the stuff that I publish on this blog.

Well what a pleasant surprise... and here I thought not many bothers with what I write. So for you mystery reader(s) out there, do drop me a line and let me know that you take the time to drop by this humble blog ya? Thank you for your kind attention! *Sends out virtual waves and kisses* ^_^