Saturday, May 24, 2008


It's all quiet on the home and business front. All too quiet, which cannot be a good sign on how things may be turning out on the economic front but when you consider that I was out drinking late last night, it was probably a darn good thing for me to take a break from life, today. But then again, I can't really complain.

It was good Indian food at a friend's 60th birthday party and then a late but enjoyable night at the Ministry of Sound as a guest of Spain's Tourism Authority. I love Europeans, you can always trust them to do the decent thing and provide booze....and needless to say there were a few sufficiently scantily clad chicks around to please the eye. As in all ironies, I ended up finding the most civilised woman at the event to be Spanish - we ended mixing communications in my pidgeon Spanish, her pidgeon Mandarin, our somewhat decent German and English. This is Singapore, it's good to be somewhat multilingual. The finale to this came from a Finnish guy who started telling everyone I could speak Finnish. Seriously, I don't speak Finnish. It's probably the most unique language in Europe, in many ways closer to Japanese than Sweedish or the Nordic Languages. So, I guess when I Finn tells you that you've pronounced a few words in his language correctly, it's a compliment. Mind you, Singapore is funny. I've had a few Italians compliment me on my beautiful Italian accent and I don't even speak the language (but then again Georgio sounds better than the Singlish Chor Chi O).

I digress. Last week was surprisingly good in terms of networking. Met a few people at the Irish Embassy and there was this week's AdAsia Pub Night, where I ended up talking to a surprisingly attractive (or at least I was finding her such) SPG (Thanks to Adelene, I realise that Asian women who bitch about Asian women lacking self-respect and throwing themselves at ANY white man are usually the biggest SPG's of the lot). But free-booze events aside, life on the business front is seemingly bland, particularly now that the main press has done as instructed by the government and "Moved On" from the Mas Selamat affair (As presumeably has Mas Selamat, whom Ministry of Home Affairs still insist is in Singapore).

The happy news in Singapore is the fact that the International Court of Justice has just awarded us soverignty of the Pedera Braca, an atol with a lighthouse. Malaysia gets the Middle Rocks. Yea, we beat the Malaysians to a bunch of rocks with a lighthouse. However, they didn't go away empty handed, they got the Middle Rocks, which are a bunch of rocks in the sea. Of course, God may have a sense of humour and give them oil under that patch of rock but as a Singaporean, I believe there is only ONE god and he works in the Istana.

Jokes aside, there's more disturbing news. The Singapore economy has had a slower growth rate as compared to the year before. So, guess what - business is going to get a bit tougher all thanks to the lending of money of a bunch of yanks who can't keep control of their spending habits. I'm slowly but surely moving towards planning to increase cash holdings, not that I have alot of cash to hold in the first place.

Don't think people will start feeling the pinch imediately but there are rumours that people are feeling the pain of increased rentals, food supplies and transport cost. So, its probably best if I get my cash position built up fast and my income diversified away from the marketing communications industry, which is notorious for being the first thing to get cut whenever there's an economic downturn.

Thus far, things are ok. Alcon, 3M and Pet Lovers Centre keep the bills paid and there are government hand-outs. Tang-Asia Consultancy will also be opening up a bank acount once GE CF pay. So, I live. But then I'm now searching for more avenues to build cash, reduce cost and so on.

One of my interest in the past month is to look for barter trades. Thanks to Greg, I'll be getting my hair cuts, a major grooming expense, taken care of. Now, I have to see if there are other similar deals. Have looked at Barter Exchange and Ozone sites - but they'll require some cash up front, which I'm not in the position to pay out at the moment. But anyway, it will be good to pay off certain things without having to use cash.

I'm also fantasising about trying to sell things on eBay. Between my aunt and I, the house is cluttered with allot of stuff and I think we could do with getting rid of it and hopefully realising some cash out of it. The internet is an interesting place to try and do things. I'm searching for something that can make life interesting in the next coming months.

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