Archive for June, 2011

Aki Mizoguchi

Posted in Uncategorized on June 29, 2011 by crystalake

An 18-year-old girl fell to her death in Ang Mo Kio Avenue 6 on Saturday evening.

Krystal Aki Mizoguchi, who was half Japanese, was found dead at the foot of her block at about 7.40pm at Blk 509, Ang Mo Kio Ave 6, reported Shin Min Daily News.

She is said to have fallen from her flat on the ninth floor and according to the Chinese daily, is believed to have committed suicide due to relationship problems.

Two suicide notes were reportedly discovered. Krystal, who was to turn 19 next month, was waiting to begin classes at a private university after finishing a five-month stint as a temporary clerk at the Ministry of Education.

According to her blog, the Yishun Junior College student grew up in a single-parent family and has been living with her 17-year-old brother for three years in her current three-room flat. Her parents are believed to be separated.

Krystal is also known to have begun dating from 13 years old and since then neglected her studies.

A scan of her Facebook page revealed several cheerful photos of herself in what seemed to be a usual teenager’s life.

But the last entry on her blog, dated March 5 earlier this year and which was entitled “Crash and Burn”, spoke of her broken dreams after poor A-Level exam results.

From Yahoo! News, “Teenage girl falls to her death at Ang Mo Kio”.

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Lemonade

Posted in Uncategorized on June 25, 2011 by crystalake

Ingredient and Portion:
– 2 lemons (gives around 150ml of juice)
– 70g caster sugar
– ice cubes, to serve

Directions:
1. Juice lemons.
2. Combine lemon and sugar in a big container and stir until sugar dissolves.
3. Pour mixture into a large jug. Add around 250ml of water, stir well and chill. Serve over ice.

New Tales of G

Posted in Uncategorized on June 19, 2011 by crystalake

Dan Sa Ran is a very nice and wise girl, but her face looks very puffed up… I cannot bear to see her Michael Jackson nose… Da Mo has a weird coconut cap hairdo. His features looks abit … Love Ra Ra, a natural beauty, unlike SR…

$2 chicken rice and 80cents kopi-o

Posted in Uncategorized on June 18, 2011 by crystalake

Munch House at Sembawang mrt.
Last Sunday Newpaper wrote about this news.

Money talks when S’pore women say ‘I love you’

Posted in Uncategorized on June 15, 2011 by crystalake

Jun 15, 2011

Survey finding may be a reason for low birth rate, as materialistic people value family less
By Theresa Tan

BLAME the material girl for Singapore’s baby woes.

Cupid and the stork had no luck last year, with the number of marriages and babies born dipping to yet another record low.

New research by Singapore Management University (SMU) psychology professor Norman Li could shed some light on Singapore’s ever-shrinking birth rate. His study, published earlier this year, shows that Singaporean women are ‘significantly’ more materialistic than their American peers.

When it comes to looking for a potential spouse, the top criterion for Singaporean women is a man’s social status. Next on the list is kindness, followed by a lively personality. In contrast, American women value kindness the most, followed by looks, then a man’s social standing.

Prof Li did not ask his subjects for their reasons but said he is not surprised by the finding. ‘Maybe Singaporean women are just being realistic. Here, you need a lot of money to survive and afford an affluent lifestyle. Maybe they are just being practical,’ he said.

He and his associates surveyed about 400 psychology students aged between 19 and 21, studying at the SMU and the Northern Illinois University near Chicago in the United States, on their attitudes towards marriage, children and preferences when it comes to choosing a partner.

The study found no major differences when it comes to men: Both American and Singaporean men went for looks first. The second most important trait in a spouse for men was kindness and the third was a lively personality.

‘Men are wired to go for looks,’ he explained, adding that a woman’s physical attractiveness is a visual cue for fertility. Features such as ‘soft skin, full-looking lips and colourful cheeks’ are not just attractive, but also associated with youth, which indicates a woman’s fertility. That is why men tend to go for younger women, he explained.

Prof Li, a 45-year-old American-born Chinese, knows this first-hand. His American wife, Ruth, is 21 years his junior. Mrs Li, now a housewife, was his student when he was lecturing at the University of Texas at Austin before he came to Singapore in 2008. They have a two-year-old son, Jasper.

His research also showed that the pursuit of material success is at odds with the desire to settle down and have babies. ‘Lots of past research have shown that the more materialistic you are, the less you place value on having friends and family,’ he said.

It’s a simple trade-off, he added. We have only so much time and energy, and chasing one goal means giving up another ideal.

Another possible factor has to do with one’s source for fulfilment, whether it is strong family ties or material success. He said: ‘If you have good relationships, you may not need to value material things because you already feel good.’

However, he noted that research has not determined which comes first: ‘Do people pursue material goals and then abandon friends and family, or is it because they are no good at having friends and family and so they make up for it by grabbing onto material things?’

He said he decided to study Singapore’s baby woes from a psychological perspective after learning that it was an utmost national concern. By and large, he noted, wealthier countries tend to have lower birth rates. Yet ‘significant differences’ still occur among countries which enjoy similar levels of economic development, he said.

That is why he decided to compare Singapore and the US. Singapore ranks ninth out of 229 countries, while the US takes the 10th place, in terms of per capita gross domestic product, according to the Central Intelligence Agency World Factbook.

Yet the US’ total fertility rate (TFR) at 2.05 in 2009 was almost double Singapore’s rate of 1.22. Last year, Singapore’s TFR, which measures the average number of children a woman will bear in her lifetime, sank to a historic low of 1.16.

Only 37,967 babies were born last year, the lowest number since 2005 when Singapore saw 37,492 births, despite the surge in the number of new citizens and permanent residents in recent years. And only 24,363 couples tied the knot last year – the lowest since 2007, when 23,966 couples wed.

In a Family Research Network forum presentation on singlehood at the National University of Singapore last month, Prof Li pointed out that Singaporeans – both men and women – are ‘significantly’ less satisfied with life than Americans.

Americans scored an average of five, while Singaporeans came in at 4.38 in his study. The closer the score is to seven, the more satisfied with life the respondents are. Singaporean women were also found to be ‘significantly’ more materialistic than American women. They polled an average of 3.98, compared to the American women’s score of 3.74. The closer the score is to five, the more materialistic one is deemed to be.

While the study did not ask respondents for the reasons behind their answers, Prof Li feels that the relentless rat race and high cost of living are possible reasons Singaporeans are less happy with life and are more inclined to go after money and success.

While it is expensive to live in major US cities such as New York or Los Angeles, there are plenty of places in the US to ‘live comfortably’ for a lot less money than in Singapore. ‘It’s not that hard to buy a house and car in the US,’ he said.

Besides, with the globalised economy and outsourcing, Singaporeans are vulnerable to losing their jobs to a foreigner any time. ‘People can’t really relax. Can you really get to the point where you feel comfortable? People just don’t get to that point any more,’ he noted.

Also, Singaporeans, like other Asians, tend to worry more about life than Westerners, who are ‘more relaxed’ and more comfortable with facing the unknown.

‘I think you have to work really hard and succeed before you can relax here,’ he said. ‘On average, people in the West are able to enjoy life as they go along. They are not going to kill themselves to succeed.’

So what is the bottom line?

He pronounced: ‘Materialism is a double-edged sword.’ While materialistic values spur the economy to greater heights, they dampens people’s desire for family and children.

His research shows that people who are less satisfied with life and value material success more are less likely to view marriage and procreation ‘favourably’. For career-minded women, having children – or more children for that matter – is a drain on their time and resources.

With more women taking on high-flying jobs and their expectations of their partners rising as their own earning power soars, he reckoned getting the dismal birth rate up will be ‘very, very difficult’ unless a shift in values away from materialism towards more pro-family values occurs.

But beyond saying that more monetary incentives are unlikely to spur the stork to visit more often, he refused to delve further into pro-natal incentives that will work, insisting that is not his area.

His research mainly explores ‘what do people really look for in mates’ and the science of attraction, love and lust in people, he maintained.

So has knowing all about women’s psyche helped in his own pursuit of happiness? Prof Li is the first to admit he has had ‘mixed success’ and made ‘lots of mistakes’ in his love life, despite his vast research on the topic. His first marriage, to a former postgraduate course mate, broke down after four years due to ‘different values’.

‘There’s a difference between knowing what you should do and doing it. Doing it is not always easy,’ he said. ‘I’m reasonably confident that I can tell when someone is interested in me. I can generally interest someone who might be interested in me but I could use more work in the relationship maintenance department.’

property

Posted in Uncategorized on June 9, 2011 by crystalake

SINGAPORE: National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan on Thursday sounded the alert on the spike in property prices in his latest blog posting.

He said things can go very wrong suddenly and gave three reasons.

Firstly, 35,000 private homes have already been sold – though still in construction – with payments in various stages of completion.

And there are 45,000 units in the pipeline, waiting to be built and sold.

Secondly, URA on Thursday announced its Government Land Sale Programme for the second half of the year which will inject another 8,000 private residential units into the market.

Together with committed investments, some 53,000 units will be looking for buyers over the next few years.

Lastly, Mr Khaw said the external situation is not exactly bullish.

The European sovereign debt crisis will take a long time to clear.

The Middle East crisis can still go ugly.

If that leads to a spike in oil prices and halts the fragile global economic recovery, the impact on Asia and Singapore will be direct and immediate.

Moreover, foreign buyers of these properties have been strong.

In the recent quarter, they made up 16 per cent of all buyers of these private properties.

Many Singaporeans also buy properties with the intention to rent them to foreigners who come here to live or work.

In the event of any external shock, both foreign demand and rental demand can fall quite quickly.

Mr Khaw said the impact can be serious if the drop in demand happens at a time when there is a substantial increase in supply.

Further, low interest rates will not remain so forever. Cost of borrowing and repayment must go up and households must factor this in.

Mr Khaw said he’s not the only one worried.

He cited a property analyst who recently said some property investors seem either “blissfully ignorant” of the massive supply that will hit the market from 2013.

Mr Khaw said market correction or any crash is not a given.

If all goes well, the economy will continue to grow and those who bought properties here will enjoy good returns when their units are completed in the next few years.

But no one is immune to mishaps.

With so much uncertainties, the Minister advises investors and upgraders to bear these considerations in mind when they go to show rooms and contemplate if they should sign up.

Garden of Time

Posted in Uncategorized on June 7, 2011 by crystalake

Everything comes up roses.

You reap what you sow.

-insert-garden-variety-adage-

While waiting for the tow truck to tow brown’s car……

Once in awhile, I come to realise how much I’ve missed when whizzing by on my high horse.

I forget to pay attention to people, to things that used to matter. It wasn’t so long ago that I was fed up with working for incompetent people. It wasn’t so long ago that I was directionless in my career. It wasn’t so long ago I didnt have a clue as to what I was doing and why I was doing it.

A normal day then would have passed with nary a care. I really did not or rather, would not give a shit. But much time has passed, and with time wounds heal and the bitterness and resentment over my last employment stint have passed. What remains now is pity, not for me, but for a good friend who is still toiling her way in that shit hole. She assures me her time there is short and for that I’m grateful. It was my fault she got into that place.

Fast forward to now. I love my job. I see my purpose, and I want to etch it into a career.