Advertorial: Tyrepac 3-day tyre sale

I was recently pointed to Tyrepac by an old acquaintance who works there, and it’s the first online tyre shop I’ve seen. They’re currently operational in Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, China and Korea.

If you need tyres, you simply go to the site, pick your car make and model, and a selection of the right tyres for your car is there for you to choose. You then pick the one you want, and pick a certified installer’s location to get your tyres installed on your car.

There is also a service where the installer comes to your location and fixes your car up for you.

If you’re in the market for new tyres, do it this weekend. Tyrepac has a 3-day sale at Ricardo Leng Kee, where there’ll be great discounts on brands like Goodyear, Kumho, Falken, Dunlop, Nankang and Firestone. There’ll be wheels and other accessories for sale as well.

I’ll be posting a review of their online ordering and on-site installation service soon.

3-Day Tyre Sale Details:
Ricardo Auto is located at 6 Kung Chong Rd (off Leng Kee Road) Singapore 159143.
Call 1800 TYREPAC (8973722) for pre-sale orders or, 64752112 from 14th to 16th for enquiries on available brands and sizes on offer

Tyrepac - Asia's First Tyre Portal. Buy Tyres Online in Singapore, Malaysia, Korea, China and more!
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Baby Aglio Olio

Cradle capKai has sensitive skin, just like his Papa, who was ridiculed from a young age when he declared to the Singapore Armed Forces medical board that he was allergic to grass and to his own perspiration.

Those ain’t rosy cheeks you’re looking at on Kai’s cute little face. Those are dry, inflamed patches where he’s smeared his drool with his hands. We’re using up moisturizer faster than you can say “Dear Kiehls, we need more baby products!”

The other thing we’ve been instructed by the pediatrician to do is to smear olive oil on his scalp because the poor bub’s got quite a bad case of cradle cap. (Haha, you said cable crap! You did! You did!)

He’s also just had his second round of the rotavirus vaccine, so for the last four days he’s been passing what the pediatrician describes as “loose stools”, so we’ve been changing his diapers full of wanton poop more often as well.

Moisturizer, olive oil and poop make for a wondrous nursery smell.

Being in love with what you do

This thread about happiness, joy and love has taken a life of its own, and it’s been quite fun to see some of the responses off twitter and the like.

There were some who, understandably, said things like “I would love to do what I love, but it doesn’t pay the bills”, or “at what cost?”, or “it’s too risky”.

And that underlines what it all boils down to – when you fall in love, and you want to pursue that love, you take a big risk, a leap of faith. And when faith doesn’t carry you across the chasm, you bloody hell flap your arms and work at it. The risks are heartbreak, failure and other attendant side effects of pursuing what you’ve fallen in love with.

A good friend, Bill Ang, pointed me to a speech he wrote for the NUS class of 09, and it probably sums it up better than what I am likely to do here haphazardly.

“Do what you love for you will end up loving what you do.

And if you still don’t quite know what it is that you love, keep searching. You will find it. And when you do, you will make a difference.”

And you will be rewarded with joy.

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Take down a musical instrument

One of my favourite poems and one which I’ve quoted here again and again is by Jalaluddin Rumi:

Today, like every other day, we wake up empty
and frightened. Don’t open the door to the study
and begin reading. Take down a musical instrument.

Let the beauty we Love be what we do.
There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.

I’m suddenly struck by how lucky I am to be doing what I love to do – writing nonsense – and making a living out of it. I remember talking about this to Bob Blumer last month when he was here promoting his show, and just last night, mrbrown and myself were trading nonsense tweets about loving what we do for a living.

I can’t remember exactly what Bob said about loving what we do because I was too easily distracted by the food we were tasting on the tour, but mrbrown has often said something to the effect of “we didn’t know better, that’s why we dropped out of school and did our own thing”.

I think we both knew better, and that’s why we’re still pursuing what we love, and we’ve been damned lucky to have been rewarded along the way, making our ongoing journeys worthwhile.

It’s not as easy as saying, “I’d rather be doing something else”, then up and leaving your current career. You have to be sure of that something else. You have to love that something else.

Once you’re sure, it’ll take you on journeys so rewarding, you might end up in Singapore making popiah skin in front of a bunch of bloggers:

Do you love what you would rather be doing? Enough to chase it?


Things that bring us happiness these days tend to revolve around Kai. His name in Japanese means “The World”, so he’s our world after all.

We’re happy all of the time because we have Kai. Happiness tends to be an enveloping state of mind. But there are little moments that happen throughout that are just simply moments of joy.

You can put a finger on it.

What’s your finger on?


IMG_0677 Last weekend when we went to visit my parents at their home, my father looked a little worse for wear because of Parkinson’s. His stiffness and gait was more pronounced than it had ever been.

As it was a hot day, Kai was a little more than cranky when we arrived, and Naomi and I had wanted to let his grandpa hold him, if that was at all possible, for a little while.

It was possible, as grandpa was seated on a wide armchair, so he didn’t really have to carry Kai, who was all of 8kg last week, but just allow him to settle across his lap.

We were kind of worried Kai would start wailing once we placed him there, and were at the ready to pick him up again if he did.

More than the opposite happened. First, Kai smiled at his grandpa, and grandpa reciprocated the best his facial muscles knew how.

Then Kai laughed. For a baby who’s only started how to chuckle a few days earlier, he let out a stream of chuckles, complete with deep audible intakes of breath in between.

Grandpa really, really smiled, and then as he cradled Kai in his arms, they both gurgled and cooed nonsense to each other.

Kai’s starting to drool a lot these days, and he’s making a mess of grandpa’s hands and arms just as grandpa is doing the same to himself because of Parkinson’s Disease.

It’s a slimy, icky, gummy, grinny, gurgly bonding session between Kai and his grandpa, who suddenly looks like he’s turned back a decade.


Monitoring baby Yesterday afternoon, as I was struggling to put words to a song and a skit, the baby monitor I had on the desk crackled to life, its blue lights flickering and its speaker letting me listen to Naomi’s mother patting Kai and singing twinkle twinkle little star, which is the only song she sings to him.

But because she’s trying to put him to bed, she’s singing it lullabye style, which is slower and softer and doesn’t have any hand actions because you are carrying the baby after all.

She sings and pats for a good five minutes or so, and Kai doesn’t sound like he’s anywhere near sleeping, and keeps gurgling and cooing at Twinkle Twinkle Grandma, who is tiring quickly.

The patting stops for a moment, and then starts again, so I think she’s put him down in his cot and then resumed patting and singing.

Kai’s still gurgling, and Grandma gets a little impatient and tells him in Mandarin and Taiwanese to “quickly go to sleep”. She sings another few bars, and then says again “go to sleep, go to sleep”.

The patting becomes erratic and the singing stops, but the verbal urging picks up and Grandma says, “Come on Kai, go to sleep, go to sleep”, and starts to snort loudly and sharply in between saying “go to sleep”.

This snorting startles me for a few seconds before I realise she’s merely trying to mimic snoring in the hope that Kai picks up the cue, since he’s already missed the verbal and singing ones.

The snorting continues for a few minutes as I listen in, trying to control my laughter. Then abrubtly, it stops, and I hear in Mandarin a very resigned, “OK, since you don’t want to sleep, so be it. Grandma wants to sleep”.

Within seconds, real snoring is heard – a lot more rhythmic than the imitation ones, and in several more minutes, Kai stops gurgling. Some more rustling is heard, then all becomes quiet.