Driving the van Part One

Anyway, on the way home, I realized there are more pressing matters about the van:

1) It has no power steering
Yeah. This van, or rather, this particular model, has no power steering. Reminds me of my Dad’s 1965 Volvo. If you had seen me in 1995, you would be asking about my biceps too. Driving it is a nightmare. Although it has great turning capabilities, the absence of power steering sort of takes the fun out of everything. So, you can see me pushing and pulling the steering like a bus driver. Oh yeah, the steering is huge.

2) Suspension
Have you ever sat on the edge of a diving board and suddenly your friend starts to jump up and down? That is the feeling I got when I go over humps. Any hump higher than three inches is just asking for it. And when you come down, so are everything else on the dashboard. I must always remember to make sure the front wheels (at 39psi) are always full of air or it will be very hard to control the van.

3) It’s a thirsty bugger
My usual RM30 doesn’t even get me half a tank. And on that day, it was slightly higher because the previous owner put in about RM20. And guess how far it got me? Yep, about 220 Kilometres. But if I was to test it with just pure RM30, I thnk the mileage is worse than my Satria. I am guessing about 180Km or thereabouts.

[Update: 10092007] I got stuck in the Highway from Shah Alam to Kepong and guess what? The van drank Rm15 worth of petrol already. Haih. Die lor. OK, so it hates jams.

4) Where is the Engine?
OK, so I did not read the manual. I know its somewhere under the seat because I can hear it farting outside and shaking below me. I just want to be prepared in case it explodes or something. At least there is a fire extinguisher inside. And not only that, it seemed to be underpowered. It has enough toque to get me there but not enough to overtake a lorry even at 80Kmh. So, I’ll be driving very slowly all the time, which brings me to….

5) Cassette player
What the fuck am I going to do with just a cassette player in there? Luckily, I have the portable FM MP3 player. I could go nuts listening to Hitz.fm or those weirdos called Serena See and Petrol or something. And not only that, you’d have to literally bend to the far end just to reach the sensitive controls. It is sensitive because if you twist it just a smidgen, it would be too bloody loud. And let me tell you this, its not that easy when you’re driving the van.

6) Seatbelts
There are no seatbelts other than for the driver and the passenger in front. So, I guess that is what the length of rope on floor is for…….

7) Being horny
And do not try to use the horn. I think its located just in front of your legs because everytime I used it, its as if another car was horning right back at me. During the first test, I got a shock. I mean, on a normal car where the horn is located right in front and separated by a firewall, the sound is much muted.

So, here I am stuck with the van for I don’t know how long but it will be a blessing for me come end of this year when we move back to Bangsar.

So here it is, a Nissan Vanette. Something I wanted to try
years ago and finally, I got the chance. But I am not going
to push it with tractors and motorbikes yet.

As you can see, there is not much space for my legs
(until I realised there was a stuck water bottle)

And apart from my trusty toolbox (right), there were a lot
of "junk" which my Boss OK'ed for me to get rid of

OK, so these are my own personal junk, except for that
engine oil. The small tupperware are my projects that I
can work on when I am free on the road or just resting

So, today is the second day. And I still could not accept the fact that I stepped on the steering column instead of the brakes. After examining the van closely, I noticed that the previous owner did not appreciate it. It has not been washed, nor the floors cleaned. Moreover, there were paint on the seats and also, a lot of junk at the back.

Driving the van is a bit weird. When it comes to driving a car, you will realize that the engine is in front of you and so, the distribution of weight is different. Not only that, you’re literally sitting on top of the tyres. And when you turn, you notice that you “turn” with the van as well. Which sometimes, is a bit scary when going into corners or tight places. And because the van is high and has a lot of blind spots, I tend to rely more on mirrors and less on the reverse sensors. I think I should buy a set of those round fish-eye mirrors as the wheel reversed into our clothes hanging thingamajic.

Oh, and one more thing. When it comes to underground basement parking or where there are “tunnels”, you tend to feel a little but claustrophobic as if you’re going to scrape the roof. You will notice that because the radio antenna keeps hitting it. But one good thing is that you can retract the antenna by just pulling your right hand to the back and pushing it down.

[UPDATE: 08092007]
After cleaning it last night, it still has that grey watermark streaks which is very hard to get rid of. I could get it removed professionally (but that comes out from my own pocket) but I do not know where to go to.

The day I got the van...

"Keep your pride at home!" My Boss told me.

"And take the test!".

You see, I was supposed to take the test so that I could drive the company's commercial van. This was in plan with the company's aim. The Kenari which I am getting fond of, is going to be given to another person. And so, I get to "inherit" the van. But I was supposed to have done everything by June. Unfortunately, we were so busy, this issue was kept at the back burner until now.

The procedures of getting the license was quite easy. Sit for the seven hour lecture, and then take the test one week later. Simple, right? Yes, it was that simple. Until things got in the way, like work and busy schedules and also, "advises". So, on the eve of the exam, after a late night session too, I told my Boss that I can take the test by myself, even though I have cancelled Monday's leave to study my notes. But he thought otherwise and told me that he has no doubt about my capabilities but its the monkey-business he could not afford to take chances.

And so, on that morning, it was a personal struggle for me, having to give my own answers without being "spoilt" by the actual answers. But when I checked again and again, I would only get three mistakes out of fifty, which is still above the passing mark of forty-two. Anyway, what is done, is done and I am still not happy about it. But it did create a win-win situation for other parties.

I remembered that during the lecture, not many people were taking notes. But when the exams came, everyone was poring over the sample test book which was given free to us the week before. And most of the questions were from the same book. Dammit.

I could have saved the company that money.

Anyway, what is done is done.

You know what I did when I got the van on the first day? Yeah, I broke one of those parking gate poles/barrier at The Curve. And the fine was RM100. The guy told me that he would let me off except for the newly installed CCTV which has recorded my deed. They have had this for a few times where the last culprit took off and they had to call the Police to get him.

Maybe I was too excited or nervous since this was my first time driving a van. And when I sat on the driver’s seat, it felt a bit cramped. (Which the next day, I realized, that the reason I could not move the seat further back was due to a fucking water bottle blocking the way) So, when I tried on the paddles, I kept hitting the steering column as I did not get to see the paddles properly in the dark. All the time, I thought the brakes were stuck.

By the time I finished at The Outpost, it was already dark. So, at the parking exit, I slowed down and stepped on the brakes but the van kept moving. When I stepped harder, there was no change. So, I was like this dumb fuck, sitting in the van, watching it hit the barrier and breaking it in slow motion. (After thoughts, I could have just pulled the handbrakes but I was shocked). And so, the security guard on the bicycle stopped me and I had to pull over to the side to let the other cars go while he reported my stupididty.

So, here I am, with my camera running out of rechargables
and only able to capture these two shots. Here is the man
who talked to me and slightly above left, you can see the CCTV

I only broke the yellow aluminum pole but the previous culprit
broke the whole thing. That is why you see the partial cover

OffWorld Blade Runner Blaster

Finally, I got the chance to see Kalkamel's OffWorld 2019 Blaster. I was so excited when he told me that it "got through". This is the slightly more robust version of the famed Blade Runner blaster. However, according to Kalkamel, it is not as accurate as the WorldCon version where the blaster "surfaced" out of nowhere and a lot of people took a lot of pictures for reference. You can consider that as the Holy Grail of all Blade Runner blasters. So, in the near future, there will be a lot of new kits coming out and they will be much more accurate than the current version. This was because the current blasters on the market was made via screen picture references taken from the original 1982 movie. In that era, the movie‘s video quality was of not much help since it was grainy. Even with the LD or DVD version, the dark environment threw up a lot of unanswered questions about the blaster's colour and so on, as it was always in the shadows or made unidentifiable due to lighting ( I think so since I don't remember much about the film anymore) . Anyway, if you go to Kal’s blog, I am sure he will explain about this in more detail. That is, if he blogs about it. Ha ha ha ha.

The OffWorld Blaster is close enough for it to be recognised as a Blade Runner blaster but not 100% screen accurate. But what really interested the Blade Runner fans was that this blaster, which is made mostly from metal and plastic parts, have a few prominent features:

1) It has a working trigger and also, if you are brave enough, to open it up and replicate all plastic parts into metal and then modify it slightly, in theory, you could have a working pistol. There are two triggers and if I am not mistaken, Harrison Ford used only one, which is the one nearest to the grips.

2) Although the bullet chamber cannot be rotated for fresh rounds, you can, according to Kal, put in replica .38 rounds into it. There are five rounds but I am not sure since my memory about the movie is quite vague already

3) And just like in the movie, the red LEDs are there. However, if you wish to be more accurate, you'd have to fit in the fifth LED and move the slide switch to outside of the casing

4) Because the blaster was made from a combination of an actual rifle and a revolver which is the Steyr Mannlicher .222 Model SL rifle and a Charter Arms .44 Special Police Bulldog. One of the feature of this blaster is that you can open the lever and pull the breech just like a real rifle. But this feature was not shown in the movie.

After carefully playing with it, the gun feels quite right but suprisingly, the grips are slightly too bulky for me. The same can be said for actual guns too. Maybe I am too used to toy guns. But after having a brief once-over with blaster, I am so tempted to get one myself. Unfortunately, there is a risk with the Customs confiscating it. And also, I have to explain to my wife why I got a gun too. And then Mr. VISA why I am not paying my bills on time as well............

Sigh. Maybe its easier to just take Kal’s blaster and then run far far away………

Up and down

Life is full of ups and downs.
I have so many projects to do, but never the time nor the money
Then I have two wonderful daughters who flips between Jeckyl and Hyde in minutes
I also have a beautiful wife yet I feel as if I disappointed her
I never have enough money to get me going but I have a lot of wonderful friends who go out of their way
I like to help my friends but most of them are never in the same City
I love to work in Life but Life worked me to Heck
I wanted to go up but accidentally pressed the down button......


I am bored today. Waiting for the main distributor to activate some ports which I found out later that he won't be coming today but tomorrow instead. So, as I went for my lunch, I took some random photos.

I am not sure what message I was trying to convey but roughly, the following picture was what I imagined it to be:


So, I just use Photofiltre to turn it to black and white, blue the background and foreground, brighten and darken it a bit. But now, it looks more like a miniature model.

OK, so now I am getting carried away. Here is another one.


I don't even what I was thinking

Help! I am starting to like black and white! Where is zybisko14?

So far...........

Well, almost there......... the PIC just coming this morning, so we'll settle some programming
Neat or not?

Food for men

This is another ad plastered on the car windscreen while I was away attending to my customer. Later on, I realised whoever plastered it was very hardworking as all cars within 200m radius was affected. Man, some wives are going to be very happy soon. Either that, or there are a lot of walking tripods.

Celplus is 100% pure organic product which gives you 100% natural results without any side effects or addiction.

Instantly effective
Boosts your manly confidence
Boosts your manly control (what?)
No side effect nor addiction
Energetic, enthusiastic and comfortable

Classified as food by the Health Ministry
100% Effective
Money back guaranteed

Safe to eat, highly effective

Well, the ad screams results and all, but what I am more interested was the advertiser's name, Ken Chow. If you just twist it a bit, it will sound Keng Chow in Cantonese which means damn great, super or something to that effect.

Oh, and look at the two pictures on the top left and right. The before picture shows a rubber arrow and then, the effect it had when you feed it Celplus. And all is OK because there are no "obscene" pictures or words, but the message is quite clear.

What, you want his mobile number too?

Signs of the TIME

As I was passing through what appears to be a small maintenance room, I came across a very old sticker pasted on the door. I think this was when during the booming years where a lot of telco players, full of money, tried to get a piece of the communication pie in the late 90’s before everyone got merged or bought over.

How can TIME be profitable if:
1) Work meant for staff is given to the contractors instead

Now the latest is MrZukafli (Korea) as a Enggineer of W. Genting c/room and the number is ...... jeng jeng jeng (eqv. of drumroll) 017-xxxxxx

Then we all resign and join MLM (Direct selling) SURECO