Monday, 31 May 2010

Food and Restaurant: Tai Hing

Tai Hing from a taiwanese blog

Siu Mei, you "either love it or love it". Yes, there isn't any typo in the last sentence, "either love it or love it". It is very hard to find meat lovers on this planet that can resist the temptation of roasted meat and Cantonese Siu Mei plays a very important part of Hong Kong people's eating lifestyle.

Crispy suckling pig rice

Even tourists know the greatness of this type of Cantonese cuisine. Have you ever heard friends from other Asian countries coming to Hong Kong to buy whole roasted geese back to their own countries? I have, my friends. It sounds insane indeed. I have always thought, "how can the siu mei keep their crispiness and tenderness after hours of flight?" I suppose they can't, but something as soggy as that, something that we never wish to try in local restaurants, is nothing when it comes to our siu mei tourist friends.

Roast goose rice

And so I am sure you know which restaurant I want to recommend, and that is my canteen -- Tai Hing.

Whenever I have time for dinner (because I mostly have little), I will allow myself to indulge in the taste of the gorgeous Tai Hing Siu Mei. 

It may be expensive compared to other local restaurants, but the quality definitely proves its worth. At $45 to $50, you get fabulously fresh, roasted goose (leg) / pork / suckling pig / chicken / soya chicken (leg) with rice...

Juicy and tender meat, crispy skin goose

Original Chinese soup with no MSG...
Water squash with beans and dry octopus soup

... and an extra plate of choi sum or lettuce (not shown in the pictures). If you don't like the soup, you can also add $3 for the chilled original milk tea.

Chilled Original Milk Tea from Tai Hing
Image from talesfromthetummy
Expensive? You won't know until you try. In my opinions, Tai Hing's Siu Mei is the best Siu Mei I have ever tried!!!

Some of you may not agree with me, but if honesty, accessibility and comfort are also under considerations, then Tai Hing definitely earns higher points than those who cheats their customers with extra bones or heavily scales, than those who have only one branch in the entire region, than those soaking wet floors with tissue balls on the floor. Tai Hing is convenient and comfortable enough for me. There is one in Mongkok, one in Causeway Bay and there is one near where I live. 

Suckling Pig rice (semi fat)

Another thing I like about Tai Hing is that they serve their customers very very well. Their (usually) bilingual staff have (generally) polite in manner, and their chefs entertains special requests made by the customers, such as more / less rice, lean /fat meat, more sauce, etc. You see, I am not too fond of fatty meat, so I always ask for lean ones. The meat is incredibly tender and succulent, only fresh meat can have such textures and taste so good!

5-star roast pork (requested lean meat)

Close up of the lean pork

Their breakfast, tea-time and evening dishes are quite nice too, some weekends I even visit Tai Hing 3 times a day (not just "Tai Hing Everyday", but every meal) but not every shop offers evening dishes, so you better check by calling up the restaurant you would like to visit. 

And beware, the restaurant in Causeway Bay is small, and so is the chilled original milk tea, but pricier

soggy --  (adj) (of things which can absorb water, especially food) unpleasantly wet and soft
pricier -- (adj) more expensive, from "pricey".


Friday, 28 May 2010

Business Vocabulary: The Cogs -- The Law Group

And so I hope you enjoyed learning the business vocabulary I posted in the Business Vocabulary: The Cogs -- The Boss Group entry. This time is the Law Group, words to do with lawyers. I have added better explanations to the original meanings given by Toontask to make the words easier for you to learn.

If you are reading, here we go!

Bottom Feeder - A person who profits on the misfortune of others.
Image from cartoonstock

Bloodsucker - A person who preys on others.
Image from cartoonstock

Double Talker - A person who speaks in a deliberate, evasive way, whose speech appears to be earnest and meaningful but in fact is a mixture of sense and nonsense.
Leon Lai (not a lawyer but represent the meaning best. No offense!)
Image from Xinhuanet

Ambulance Chaser - A person who persuades accident victims to sue.

Back Stabber - A person who unfairly attacks someone in a deceitful manner.
Image from lawstudentcode

Spin Doctor - Someone who takes situation of a bad event and disguises it as something good.
Image from waterworksthatwork

Legal Eagle - Simply put, a lawyer.
Image from stus

Big Wig - The most important person in a group or undertaking.
Image from cardozo

Chief Justice - A public official who hears and decides cases brought before a court of law. In other words, a Judge.
Image from Mathpol

Have a happy Friday!!!

deliberate -- (adj) (often of something bad) intentional or planned
evasive -- (adj) answering questions in a way that is not direct or clear, especially because you do not want to give an honest answer

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Song: Mockingbird -- Eminem

A Grammy award nominated rap song sung by arguably one of the best rappers in the world, Mockingbird tells Eminem's very personal story of this early relationships with his wife and daughters. This song dates back to April 2005 at a time when Eminem was already very famous/ infamous. The lyrics of the song are in the form of a one-sided conversation with his beloved daughters, Hailie and Lainnie, explaining his absence in their lives, the difficulties he faced throughout their childhood years, as well as his love and missing for his daughters. It is one of the most touching song that I have ever heard but also one of the saddest. While listening to his song, I am always reminded that famous singers do not always walk the smooth path, some might even have walked tremendously tragic ones and have sacrificed a lot themselves or their families.

There are lots of words to learn from this song, so please spend some time to comprehend. At native listening level, you should be able to catch 90% of the words in this song.

Let's enjoy the song first... Level of difficult for listening: Crazy.

Mockingbird -- Eminem (Original MTV Version)

Mockingbird -- Eminem (Better Sound Quality Version)

Mockingbird -- Eminem (Lyrics Version)


I know sometimes things may not always make sense to you right now
But hey, what daddy always tell you?
Straighten up little soldier
Stiffen up that upper lip
What you crying about?
You got me...

Hailie, I know you miss your mom and I know you miss your dad
When I'm gone, but I'm trying to give you the life that I never had
I can see you're sad, even when you smile, even when you laugh
I can see it in your eyes, deep inside you want to cry
Cuz you're scared, I ain't there?
Daddy's with you in your prayers
No more crying, wipe them tears
Daddy's here, no more nightmares
We gonna pull together through it, we gonna do it
Lainnie, uncle's crazy, aint he?
Yeah but he loves you girl and you better know it
We're all we got in this world
When it spins, when it swirls
When it whirls, when it twirls
Two little beautiful girls
Lookin' puzzled, in a daze
I know it's confusing you
Daddy's always on the move, mamma's always on the news
I try to keep you sheltered from it but somehow it seems
The harder that I try to do that, the more it backfires on me
All the things growing up as daddy that he had to see
Daddy don't want you to see but you see just as much as he did
We did not plan it to be this way, your mother and me
But things have got so bad between us
I don't see us ever being together ever again
Like we used to be when we was teenagers
But then of course everything always happens for a reason
I guess it was never meant to be
But it's just something we have no control over and that's what destiny is,
But no more worries, rest your head and go to sleep
Maybe one day we'll wake up and this will all just be a dream

Now hush little baby, don't you cry
Everything's gonna be alright
Stiffen that upperlip up little lady, i told ya
Daddy's here to hold ya through the night
I know mommy's not here right now and we don't know why
We feel how we feel inside
It may seem a little crazy, pretty baby,
But i promise momma's gon' be alright

It's funny
I remember back when you and daddy had no money
Mommy wrapped the Christmas presents up
And stuck 'em under the tree and said some of 'em were from me
Cuz daddy couldn't buy 'em
I'll never forget that Christmas I sat up the whole night crying
Cuz daddy felt like a bum, see daddy had a job
But his job was to keep the food on the table for you and mom
And at the time every house that we lived in
Either kept getting broken into and robbed
Or shot up on the block and your mom was saving money for you in a jar
Trying to start a piggy bank for you so you could go to college
Almost had a thousand dollars till someone broke in and stole it
And I know it hurt so bad it broke your momma's heart
And it seemed like everything was just startin' to fall apart
Mom and dad was arguin' a lot so momma moved back
Onto Chalmers in a flat one bedroom apartment
And dad moved back to the other side of 8 Mile on Novara
And that's when daddy went to California with his CD and met Dr. Dre
And flew you and momma out to see me
But daddy had to work, you and momma had to leave me
Then you started seeing daddy on the T.V. and momma didn't like it
And you and Lainnie were to young to understand it
Papa was a rollin' stone, momma developed a habit
And it all happened too fast for either one of us to grab it
I'm just sorry you were there and had to witness it first hand
Cuz all I ever wanted to do was just make you proud
Now I'm sittin in this empty house, just reminiscing
Lookin' at your baby pictures, it just trips me out
To see how much you both have grown, it's almost like you're sisters now
Wow, I guess you pretty much are and daddy's still here
Lainnie, I'm talkin' to you too, daddy's still here
I like the sound of that, yeah,
It's got a ring to it don't it?
Shh, momma's only gone for the moment


And if you ask me too
Daddy's gonna buy you a mockingbird
I'mma give you the world
I'mma buy a diamond ring for you
I'mma sing for you
I'll do anything for you to see you smile
And if that mockingbird don't sing and that ring don't shine
I'mma break that birdies neck
I'll go back to the jeweler who sold it to ya
and he'd gimme every carat don't fuck with dad (haha)

tremendously -- (adv) very great in amount or level, or extremely good
sacrifice -- (vb)[T] to give up something that is valuable to you in order to help another person
pull through sth --(phrasal verb) to become well again after a serious illness, especially when you might have died

swirl -- (vb) [I or T usually + adverb or preposition(n)[C] to (cause to) move quickly with a twisting circular movement
whirl -- (vb) [I or T] to (cause something to) turn around in circles
twirl -- (vb) [I or T usually + adverb or preposition] (n)[C] to (cause to) give a sudden quick turn or set of turns in a circle
in a daze --(n) unable to think clearly
backfire -- (vb) [I] (of a plan) to have the opposite result from the one you intended
bum -- (n) [C] US informal someone who has no home or job and lives by asking other people for money
piggy bank --(n) [C] a small container, sometimes in the shape of a pig, which is used by children for saving money
reminisce -- (vb) [I] formal to talk or write about past experiences which you remember with pleasure
trip sb out -- (slang) to be under the influence of a hallucinogenic drug, esp. LSD, hereby as a metaphorical meaning, possibly referring to the lost track of time, as if the singer has taken drugs and forgotten that time flies.


Monday, 24 May 2010

Sports & People: Inter Milan wins UEFA Champions League!!

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Champions League Final Poster 
from Wikipedia

Yes, it is yet another entry on football, again. But it was the biggest event in the football world and in Europe over the weekend, and I just can't help but to share with you my incredible joy that my favourite football team Inter Milan, has finally won the most prestigious UEFA Champions League after 45 years of waiting!!! And I just can't believe how lucky I was to have watched this happening!!!

If I am not wrong, it was 1997 when I first come across this team. At first, I thought watching football was a tedious thing to do, because it was as if a group of people are chasing the ball for nothing. I would prefer playing the game myself to watching it. But when I saw my fellow hostel friends watching the game passionately together, I thought there must be something to it. And then I saw the colours of the Inter Milan jersey, I immediately felt that this was the team that I would support.

Then I got to know the team better, and I realised that this is a team with lots of captains from their national teams, such as Roberto Baggio of Italy, Ronaldo of Brazil, Recoba of Uruguay, Cordoba of Colombia, Javier Zanetti of Argentina, they were all heroes of their own nation and yet they served at the same club. I simply found that intriguingly remarkable.

Roberto Baggio's Fighting Spirit

The club was already rather rich at that time and they could afford to spend lots of cash on purchasing big names, and they did, but for the next 8 years, the team hadn't played well at all, winning almost nothing. During that time, I watched Inter fighting and losing, more fighting and more losing, and one day I asked myself, "Why am I such a poor thing? Why do I love a football club that never wins? Wouldn't it be easier to like a club that always wins and so I could feel happy easily?"

But after asking those questions, I still stuck to Inter Milan, maybe I have found a club that resembles my character, that I see myself in this club.

Every success requires hard work, and nothing is smooth on the way. Inter battled and lost, they fell but they never gave up. Year after year, they improve a little by little. While others outran them in terms of improvement, they continue to fight. While some other Italian clubs are involved in match-fixing, Inter stayed iron-willed and clean from the corruptions. And with the help of coach Roberto Mancini, Inter finally recaptured their Italian League Serie A champion trophies 3 years in a row (2005/06, 2006/07 and 2007/08). 

But the UEFA Champions League was then what the president of the club Massimo Moratti wanted and that was the reason José Mourinho replaced Mancini. Mourinho has done very well as a manager of Inter, winning two consecutive Serie A champions (2008/09, 2009/10), but the most impressive of all, was that he has brought the entire club, players and fans together, everyone supports everyone else, on and off the pitch. A player knows that his teammates will always be behind him, and the teammates behind him knows that the fans will always be behind him. This bond is something I have never seen before Mourinho's arrival, and I just love the feeling of being part of the team and to be involved in every match they play.

I won't spend too much time talking about the Final against Bayern Munich, as there are many good ones written (here is one of them). What I will say is, maybe you don't like football, maybe you don't like the team I like, but in the world of sports, there are many stories to be listened and many lessons to be learnt. When you hear one that find inspiring and enlightening, you should remember it, because one day, it might be just that one which would benefit you for the rest of your life.

Inter captain Javier Zanetti in action during his landmark 700th appearance for Inter

A treble of trophies. The "Flying Dutchman" Wesley Sneijder's first season contributions to Inter
from zimbio

Diego Milito celebrates putting Inter 2 - 0 up against Bayern Munich 
from zimbio

World-class goalkeeper Julio Cesar celebrates with his family
from zimbio

Captain Javier Zanetti celebrates winning the most important trophy of all in his 15th year for Inter
from zimbio

Inter captain Javier Zaneti lifts aloft the trophy 
from zimbio

An immensely satisfied coach José Mourinho
from zimbio

A night to remember for president Moratti 
from zimbio

Inter has shaped me, what has shaped yours?

Thank you Mourinho!! No matter where you go!

tedious -- (adj) boring
intriguingly -- (adv) very interesting because of being unusual or mysterious
resemble -- (vb) [T] to look like or be like someone or something


Thursday, 20 May 2010

News: Goodbye CentralWorld

Image from blogspot

It was only January when I wrote about the Centara Grand Bangkok@ CentralWorld, 5 months later ...

Image from RTHK 19-May-2010

I was there before Christmas 2009, and I still remember that Cyber Cafe I was in when I wrote an entry while I was there. New Year countdown must have been better than what was captured in the following video, because camera can only keep this much......

Since camera can only keep this much, I dare to say that the damage done is in fact much more serious than this ...

I have never felt so upset for a place in another country so much. I love this place, I haven't had the time to stroll around ever single corner of it and I was thinking about going there again once the conflict had been resolved. Lady Luck didn't seem to have shone on Bangkok and she has lost her 3 of her most popular landmarks overnight -- Siam Paragon, Siam Centre and Central World Plaza.

If a foreigner like me can feel so much sorrow, how can the Red Shirt feel no remorse? Who wants their home country ruined? I want to say, "No one", but is this what we can see now?

Zen@CentralWorld from Getty Images

What should I say? If you want something, you don't get what you want this way. What good does this do? Who is the winner? There is only suffering.

More videos:
BBC News: Buildings in Bangkok set ablaze
BBC News: Chris Hogg: 'A lot of blood has been spilt'

remorse -- when you feel very guilty and sad about something you have done


Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Business Vocabulary: The Cogs -- The Boss Group

Image from Dreamstime

If reading comics can learn English, do you think playing computer games can too? Why not? Do you still remember that I learnt a lot of football terms by playing the PC game Football Manager? Well, today, I have yet another game to talk about. This game I have not yet played personally, but I find the concept pretty interesting and it allows teens or kidults to understand the dark side of the business world, not to mention the amount of vocabulary you can learn.

Meet the Cogs!!!

Image from Toontown Stratics

From the word cog, which is this:

Image from Price Point

or the expression a cog in a/the machine, which means "a member of a large organization whose job, although necessary, makes them feel as if they are not important"

In this game, they have characters named after popular business jargons for business people, and we will look into one group each time.

In order to maintain the originality of the game, I will just follow exactly the order of which the characters are listed on the website. In this entry, we will first look at the Boss group (Useful Vocab will be in bold):

Flunky - A person who does the minor, menial work around a business.

Clip-on Tie from Meechs

Shredder shredding from Intimus Paper Shredder
  1. Clip-On Tie - A cheap tie imitation that has a clip or a clasp that is used to "hang" the imitation on the collar of a shirt.
  2. Pound Key - The # button on a Telephone.
  3. Shred - An action used to tear up documents into thin strips of paper. Often done under the use a machine that utilizes this method.

Pencil Pusher - A person who mainly does the paperwork in a business.

  1. Finger Wag - A motion done with the finger, usually done to scold someone.
  2. Fill With Lead - In gangster terms, to shoot someone with a large number of bullets, usually from a machine gun. There is no business term.
  3. Fountain Pen - An old-fashioned pen that is filled with ink from an outside source (usually an inkwell)
  4. Rub Out - An action or a remark that usually hurts someone. (or, in gangster terms, to kill someone and hide the body.)
  5. Write Off - To reduce the value of an asset to zero.

Yesman - A person who agrees to the superior over anything and everything.

Yesman from Klue

  1. Razzle Dazzle - Action used to impress people through word of mouth.
  2. Rubber Stamp - An object with a handle and a rubber piece on the bottom that contained raised characters.
  3. Synergy - Cooperative merging of companies that create an enhanced combined effect.
  4. Tee Off - Term referring to the first stroke in a game of Golf. (Alternately, "Tee'd Off" which refers to someone losing their temper over something.)

Micromanager - is a manager closely observes or controls the work of her or his subordinates or employees. .

Tee Off from GoldProSelections

  1. Brain Storm - A sudden clever plan or idea.
  2. Buzz Word - A stylish word or phrase connected with a special group, that usually sounds important or technical. This format's usually focused to impress laypersons.
  3. Demotion - A reduction in grade, rank, or status.
  4. Finger Wag
  5. Fountain Pen

Downsizer - A person who retires (to put it nicely) workers in order to reduce the company's expenses.

Pink Slip from Don't Hate, Educate
  1. Canned - Slang for a person who is fired from a company.
  2. Downsize - To fire someone in order to reduce a company's expenses.
  3. Pink Slip - An object given to a person to indicate that he is fired.
  4. Sacked - Slang word referring to a person that's been recently fired from a company. (Note that "Sacked" and "Canned" are similar terms.)

Head Hunter - A person who recruits personnel (usually executives) for a corporation.

Half Windsor from Ties on the Rize

Rolodex from Thread Blog
  1. Fountain Pen
  2. Glower Power - To intimidate someone by using a mean look.
  3. Half Windsor - A wide silk necktie tied in a loose bow.
  4. Head Shrink - A psychiatrist.
  5. Rolodex - An item that stores people's address and business cards in an office.

Corporate Raider - A person who makes an attempt of buying out a corporation against the management of the same corporation.
Power Tie from TheImageArchitect
  1. Evil Eye - Action used to give someone a mean look, usually for intimidation.
  2. Glower Power
  3. Play Hardball - Act aggressively and ruthlessly.
  4. Power Tie - A tie used to convey influence or authority.

The Big Cheese - An important person of a company, usually the leader.

Steve Jobs from Planet Green
  1. Glower Power
  2. Tee Off

CEO - Chief Executive Officer

cog -- (n)[C] one of the tooth-like parts around the edge of a wheel in a machine which fits between those of a similar wheel, causing both wheels to move
a cog in a/the machine -- [disapproving] a member of a large organization whose job, although necessary, makes them feel as if they are not important
menial -- (adj) [disapproving] describes work that is boring, makes you feel tired, and is given a low social value
layman / layperson -- (n) [C] someone who is not trained in or does not have a detailed knowledge of a particular subject


Monday, 17 May 2010

News: News of 2010-May-17

Loads of things are happening these days...... many bothers me quite a bit, thus my mind isn't very clear these days. I do want some time to clear my thoughts, but the world doesn't serve anyone in particular.

It seems to me that we are, at present, in a time of trouble. Of course, if you are in Hong Kong, you won't feel too troubled, which once again proves that Hong Kong is a city of blessings, but other places around the world aren't looking too good. Here are some of the things that everyone should know:

Volcanic ash from the eruption of Icelandic volcano...

Mega oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico:

Gordon Brown's resignation and David Cameron's takeover.

Bangkok's situation got worse:

Greece takes legal action against US banks for the crisis she is in now:

Hang Seng Index hit 14-week low, hitting the lowest 19594:

Nothing seems to be good, and nothing much we can do, or need to do, but being aware of it is helpful enough. Will these happenings affect us greatly? I doubt it. But will these eventually affect us? To a certain extent, yes. This is because we are living in a city that is crucial to the world's economy, and eventually, anything big that is happening will, sooner or later, affect our lives and our living. The more you know about the world, the more you can be prepared for any sudden changes.

What will the changes be? I have no idea, but following the news I posted above, at least I can tell that ...

  1. we can't enjoy carefree shopping in Bangkok anytime soon.
  2. prices of the products such as rice, mangoes, durians from Bangkok will continue to rise.
  3. volcanoes never care how you feel, they erupt whenever they want to.
  4. the ash will continue to suffer the airline industry, airlines that mostly fly to Europe will suffer the most.
  5. Cameron has a very hot potato on his hands.
  6. poor fish, seabirds and corals will continue to die as long as the oil spill has not been completely cleaned up.
  7. the value of Euro will continue to fall until X months later, where X is a number.
  8. holding more Euro than you will spend in a week is a very bad idea.
  9. going to Europe for travelling will get cheaper and cheaper while US dollars remains high.
  10. US dollars will stay high as long as the crisis in Europe is still ongoing.
  11. if the Euro keeps falling, the Euro zone countries will lose their trust in the currency, and more news about countries wanting to quit the Euro zone will appear.
  12. Hong Kong's stock market will continually be affected in a negative way, but ironically, many listed companies will continue to do well, particularly those which are China-based.
  13. panic-selling will continue, that people will sell even when stock prices are very cheap.
  14. gold price will continue to go up, but when it falls, it could really hurt.
  15. it is alright to keep cash now, but not alright when the market stops falling and finally rebounds.

While the world's entire atmosphere seems grey and dull, there was at least one happy piece of news for me, which was Inter Milan's winning double -- Coppa Italia and Serie A.


I watched the entire match and I was on cloud nine to see their win. It has proven that one's hard work does get rewarded. Let's hope Inter Milan will keep going, and I will keep going too!

hot potato -- from "drop sb/sth like a hot potato", meaning big trouble.