Sinking of Singapore is "Irredeemable"


Came across this graphic novel, Irredeemable. Written by Mark Waid (yes, the same Mark Waid who is responsible for DC's Kingdom Come, with artwork by Peter Krause and published by Boom! Studios.

Irredeemable introduces a question of "how does a man go from being the world’s greatest superhero to its greatest supervillain?"

It ought to be tragic, alright.

The central character is the Plutonian who previously was the world's greatest superhero due to unknown events have been twisted into becoming the world's most powerful and merciless supervillain.

The puzzles his former teammates face (and ought to solve pronto, if they are to survive his wrath):
1) What could have made such a selfless and benevolent individual into an irredeemable maniac
2) How to stop him, considering he is more powerful than all of them, knows all their secrets and has no known weaknesses.

The book suggested age group is 15+ but I am not surprised if the (truly graphic) novel were to be banned in Singapore.

In one of the emergency conference of United Nations, the chairperson (soon killed by the Plutonian) seeks to encourage the members to propose ideas on how to stop the supervillain.

Instead, the debate soon turns out to be how the UN members are arguing on how to make the Plutonian part of their nation.

In this comical situation, the Plutonian asks one politician from Singapore:
The Plutonian (TP): You. You're from...
The spectacled politician (Tsp): Singapore.
TP: Singapore. Tell me, Singapore, you want to be my home because...

Tsp: Because we seek your strength and your guidance in a hostile world.
TP: Do you understand the expression "a tiger by the tail"? Do you?

Tsp: We do. But we also recognize your long history of service to our nation. We embrace you because...

TP: I'm listening

(HERE THE HEARTBEAT OF THE SPECTACLED POLITICAN FROM SINGAPORE IS SHOWN)

TP: Go on.
Tsp: ... because we are grateful to you.

(THE HEARTBEAT OF THE LYING POLITICIAN SHOWNS A RAPID PATTERN INDICATING THAT HE IS, WELL, LYING)


And the next few pages till the end of the Irredeemable Vol.1 show Singapore is in the process of enduring a diamond (yes, you read it right. Diamond, not meteor) shower till the whole island.

The diamond shower serves as a foundation with which the Plutonian used to pummel the island nation to underneath the sea.

Singapore is the modern age Atlantis--a legendary island sank into the ocean "in a single day and night of misfortune"?

Sinking of Singapore is totally an irredeemable act! Mark Waid has something against Singapore, huh?

Still the whole plot of the story is intriguing. Looking forward for Irredeemable Vol. 2.

Production Talk - ‘Forever' by Wee Li Lin


JOEY, a video consultant from W.E.D (wedding education department), dedicates herself to promoting romance and lasting marriages to young Singaporeans through her unique videos. Now she is about to fulfill her own dream with GIN, a handsome music teacher whom she has been in a whirlwind romance with after casting him along side with her in a W.E.D video.
When Joey announces her upcoming wedding to Gin, her colleagues at W.E.D. are surprised; none of them has ever met Gin in person or heard of him until the video. But they are happy, as Joey was the only unmarried staffer at W.E.D. While Joey’s star is rising at W.E.D, the path to her own wedding is elusive. Joey gets stood up by Gin on her birthday and finds him out and about with a beautiful girl, CECILIA.

Crushed, Joey is desperate to find out what’s going on only to be met with rejection and refusal.

Is Joey delusional, in need of psychiatric help? Or is Gin just an irresponsible ex-fiancé who needs to be brought to justice? Either way, Joey’s unrelenting pursuit of Gin throughout shows us to what lengths a heart will go to get what it wants and if indeed, there is a winning formula to make love happen under any circumstances.

'Forever' on Screen Daily
About the Director

A graduate of Brown University (Class of '96) in America , with a BA in Art Semiotics, Li Lin also spent a semester in NYU doing “Sight and Sound”, an intensive filmmaking production course. Since her graduation she has been working in Singapore as a freelance television producer/director. She's an avid short filmmaker and has done several short films in Singapore so far, three of which have been award winners at the Singapore International Film Festival and two have won awards at American Film Festivals. In January last year the Singapore Film Society organized a retrospective of all her work for members and the public. This event was a first ever SFC retrospective of a local short filmmaker. In 2004, the Singapore history museum (in conjunction with the Substation) organized another retrospective of her work.

Since the middle of 2004, Li Lin has been hard at work on her first feature film "Gone Shopping" which was released in July 2007.

Taken from:
http://www.aweething.com/index.html

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Grace (G): What inspired you to start on this project?
Li Lin (LL): A few years back I met a lady client who was involved in the promotion of marriage. She was intelligent and attractive but turned out to be anti-romance after her fiancé jilted her. I liked the irony such a character presented and the potential for a comedy that could be weaved around her.

Jeremy (J): It sounds like Her World/Female/CLEO on film. Do you intend it to be a very womanly film for gals?
LL: You can call it a romantic comedy with a twist or a psycho chick flick, as one of my friends puts it. I hope to be able to expand the horizon of the chick flick genre and also to expand on the type of females represented in singapore films.

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G: How long did you take to make this film from the time pre-production started?

LL: From concept to the final shooting script, it took us 18 months starting from early 2008. After putting the finance in place and locking down the cast, we started the shoot in late November 2009. We finished the shoot in January 2010.

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J: How did you manage to get Mo Tzu Yi to star in your film? And why is he your choice given that this film is set in Singapore?
LL: It’s always our plan to have our main cast consisting of both Singapore and foreign talents. We were really taken with Mo Tzu Yi’s quiet magnetism and boyish good looks when we had the opportunity to meet him. His film work in Taiwan is going from strength to strength and we were very happy that he really liked the story and the character of Gin. This is his first non-Taiwanese film. So we're honored.

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G: Tell us more about "Forever" as a romantic comedy.
LL: "Forever" is about a woman following her heart at all costs and in our protagonist Joey's case at outrageous, wacky costs, which we hope the audience will find funny!


J: Do you have particular types of genres/settings/premises that interest you? I notice from your previous films, you have a keen eye on contemporary life of the middle to upper-middle class / executive types of Singaporeans, which is a breath of fresh air from the gritty, depressed stories we see from so many others.
LL: Thanks. I really enjoy satire and comedy but they are hard to do and i'm still learning. I tend to veer towards American films, as that's what i grew up watching plus I went to an American university where i did some film courses. American mainstream films tend to be more optimistic and idealistic, so that did rub off on me. But I also watched quite a number of American indie films during my uni days which were darker and more subversive and that also rubbed off on me.

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J: I understand Charles, your husband, an artist himself has a significant contribution to the film. What was his contribution and how was it like working with him on the set? (especially when it is coincidental that the film is about love and marriage)
LL: Charles stepped in as my art director when all other options came to naught. We were both concerned about this arrangement as we have never worked so closely before but Charles is very talented and worked very hard on the film. He understands my humor and his level of commitment and quest for perfection is inspiring. Husband and wife team projects are tricky and we definitely had our challenging days, esp as Charles has never worked on a feature film set and I often expected him to know how to run things like a 'pro'. But we want to go through it again!

G: What are your views on the film industry here in Singapore?
LL: I think the Singapore film industry is growing at a steady pace but Singapore audiences are not growing at the same speed. The only local films that make it seem to need alot of money backing them in terms of A&P but most local films wont have that kind of money to spend.

G: Give us more insight to your upcoming works
LL: Im working on a play / film hybrid with one of my best friends, playwright Jean Tay, and I'm also working on my third feature concept.

Forever is scheduled to open in Singapore through Golden Village towards the end of 2010. Watch out for it!


OPERA PURCELL'S KING ARTHUR at MAHIDOL UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF MUSIC Auditorium


Mahidol University, College of Music, proudly presents
KING ARTHUR A "Dramatick Opera" by Henry Purcell.

Date and Venue: 2nd and 3rd March 2010, 7.00 pm at Mahidol University College of Music Auditorium (Salaya).

     Based on the epic story of the Christian British King Arthur and its battles against the Heathen Germanic tribe of the Saxons, this is a so-called semi-opera in five acts (Music composition by H. Purcell, Libretto by J. Dryden). It is a very special piece of music indeed: major roles are being spoken and just accompanied by music, soloists, choir and orchestra are performing, and the story takes us into a magic world of spirits, sirens, and nymphs. It contains beautiful songs and dance rhythms, thus it is inspiring both to eyes and ears.

     King Arthur is one of the very few Baroque Operas which are still being performed regularly around the globe. This unique event promises to be a major highlight of the current music season in Thailand .

     King Arthur is a very special semi-opera, and our Thai audience (even myself!) is not very conversant with this form of art. In the Baroque time theatre was something very different from theatre at later times, using a lot of allegories and masks (representing those allegories), which leads to a much more symbolic performance (quite unfamiliar to us now!).

     This production will feature young singers from the Voice department and baroque instrumental performers, all from the College of Music .

Tickets price: 200 THB for adults, 100 THB for students.

For tickets reservation, please call 02-800-2525 ext 154, 155.

     For more information about this event, as well as on other activities and performances of the Mahidol University , College of Music , you may also visit our website at: www.music.mahidol.ac.th

Meet the producer of 'The Crying Game' on Mon 8th March


(very 70s) Photo of Nik Powell

Nik Powell, producer of such classic films as The Company of Wolves, Mona Lisa and The Crying Game, will be in Singapore in March and sharing the ups and downs of the life of a film producer in a special session at the National Museum, organised by Ngee Ann Polytechnic's School of Film & Media Studies, Chapman University Singapore and the British Council.

In 30 Lessons Of A Producer: The Gospel According To Nik Powell, Nik will be taking a light hearted look at his career as both an entrepreneur and a film producer and the lessons that he has learnt. This should be an eye-opener!

When:  7.30 pm – 9.00 pm, Monday 8th March
Where: National Museum of Singapore


This is a CLOSED event for the film industry but the BC have
5 pairs of tickets to give away. For a chance to win, email arts@britishcouncil.org.sg, citing NIK SINDIE in the subject line.

nooka in vegas

text by michael a. traverzo

while in vegas, robert was kind enough to take a picture of reebok's booth at project, where they had a trade show display which featured the lime green zub zenh 38. Be sure to order yours here!

also, don't forget to vote for nooka at pulchra. the voting process may seem a bit tedious, but it is actually really simple. simply drag nooka to the number 1 spot, if that's your choice of course and choose the other 9 objects until you have completed your list. In order for your vote to be valid, you will need to complete the details form. remember you can only vote ONCE PER DAY, so make sure to log on the next day and do it all over again. link is here!

follow nooka on facebook and twitter.

The Monster 2 by Pornthep Chitphong


The Monster 2 : Pornthep Chitphong
March 1 - 30, 2010 at angkritgallery Nanglae, ChiangRai
Opening on Monday, March 1st at 6 pm


angkritgallery invites you to the opening of our new exhibition by promising artist Pornthep Chitphong. an exhibition continues to 30 March(open everyday, 6 am - 3 pm) at angkritgallery Nanglae, ChiangRai.



     In the world of Imagination I live in, Humans are Maladies that live together
Thought-Malady, From-Malady, Appearance-Malady and many more I couldn't identify all of these Maladies live together because they're social-Maladies.ย There are both small and big communities. Humans who love to have a strange act, or love to isolate also called " Malady" I am also Malady in the world with full of Maladies. Pornthep Chitphong


angkritgallery
99 M2 Pahonyotin Nanglae, Chiangrai 57100
mobile: +66 (0) 86 911 5331
email: angkritgallery@gmail.com
website:ย http://angkritgallery.com/ag/2010/02/757/
blog: http://angkritgallery.blogspot.com/
web album: http://picasaweb.google.com/angkritgallery
facebook: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=336161991562&ref=ss

Angkrit Gallery MAP

The next thing is the first by Somyot Hananuntasuk


"The next thing is the first" by  SOMYOT HANANUNTASUK
Painting in oil and oil pastels

Vernissage
on Thursday, 4th March, 2010
at 7.30 pm
You and your friends are warmly invited!
Sunday opening on 28th March, 2010
from 11 am to 4 pm

MUNICH
5th March – 10th April, 2010
Mo – Thu 2 pm to 7 pm
Friday 2 pm to 5 pm
Saturday 11 am to 1 pm
and on appointment

ECKE GALERIE
Wolfgang Reichert
Anette Urban
Elias-Holl-Platz 6
86150 Augsburg / Germany
Tel  0049.821.152049
Fax 0049.821.156202
info@eckegalerie.de
www.eckegalerie.de

Gala Nights 2 : 'The Gang' Bang

For some reason, Maia resembles Roxie Hart from 'Chicago' the musical.

'My Gawd, I can't believe they invited these people!'

SINdie is part of 'industry' and not 'friends'...lol
Aishah from Substation gives a cheeky look, 'Blood Ties' director Chai Yee Wei looking like a secondary school student behind.

'Say cheese!' the photographer instructs the cast, who have not met all in the team until tonight because they appear in different scenes.

Grace and Jeremy take the quintessential photo with 'The Man' behind everything, Kelvin Sng (middle)

Notice the tattoo on her left arm. Could 'The Gang' spark off a comeback trend of full-body tattoos?
The Cathay Cineplex was awash with starsgazers. Two local movies were premiering at the same time - Kelvin Sng's 'The Gang' and Harry Yap's 'Happy Go Lucky'. It was nauseating trying to decipher where the stargazers were gazing. Of course, when Fann Wong made an appearance with a kooky-looking Christopher Lee, people flocked to them like bees to honey. But for the rest of the occasion, 'The Gang' maintained its glory with an event that reached new heights of grandiosity for short films. I (Jeremy) was getting a little worried for Kelvin for if the film itself would not live up to the hype (almost circus-like)in the run up to the screening. But thankfully, the film left most of the audience with nothing to say except words of congratulations in their different configurations.

slow progress !

I was in India from 23/12/09 till 20/01/10 and again from 11/02/10 till 20/02/10. Very little art work has been done since my last post, but, after visiting Ajanta and Ellora caves during my second phase of stay in India, I am more than content with what I experienced. Although it was a pleasure for my artistic mind, it was painful to see the fast deterioration of the art work at Ajanta caves.Whatever still remains is something astonishing.Please visit ajanta-some kind of miracle and ajanta_walkthrough to get a glimpse of the of our rich heritage.
I was pleasantly surprised to see the influence of that style in my work. The obvious reason is my initial training in art from my mother and my aunt, Sukriti Chakravarty. Both had the well known artist, Nandalal Bose as their teacher. Please click on Bose-slideshow to see the influence of Ajanta style in his works.
Ellora displays amazing structures representing different styles of creative vision and execution skills that existed in India in those days[5th-11th century AD]. Here are two web sites worth visiting:  Ellora caves and Ellora caves-walkthrough . I must say that viewing it on the screen can never give the viewer any idea about the experience one derives from the 360 degree view in every direction from the upper levels of the monuments.
Now, to get back to my own works in-between my travel:-
One below was done on request, for a friend. 
This work on the left in charcoal, was done in December'09 on paper measuring 50cm x 60 cm. It is part of the Ganesha series displaying the bond between baby Ganesha and parents. The other two works of this series are, 'baby Ganesha and mum' and 'paternal instinct'.



The two pieces shown above, done in charcoal and dry stick depict the Bauls of Bengal . This community of free thinkers is disappearing slowly. It was a pleasure to watch the performances of these nomadic singers every winter during Poush Mela in Santiniketan. They play their home-made special accompaniments along with the philosophical lyrics of their songs  and sometimes dance in a very typical folk style.
Even now,Rabi baul and his wife [above]  sing for us whenever we visit Santiniketan.
Presently I am concentrating on a series of water colours based on a particular theme. I aim to do at least five pieces by the end of next month. So far I have finished only one piece. 

Gala Nights 1 : When Night Fa11s


Director of the Film:Derrick Lui

Introduction of Director and Casts
(From Left)Derrick Lui,Jessica Tan,Jeszlene Zhou(strategically positioned),Desmond Tan




http://www.whennightfalls-film.com/


nooka needs your input


Hello Fan of Nooka—

We're taking a closer look at our website and we need your help. We're curious to hear what you like and dislike about the current design. Are there things you wish we had on the site but don't? Is it easy to find or buy stuff as it currently is, or are there times when you wish the layout of the site was different?

We're interested to know why you're coming to the site. For example are you only visiting to buy something, or maybe to see what's new. We have an idea why some people come to the site but any stories about why you come to the site will help us make a better experience for people that visit.

We're in the beginning process of collecting feedback as we consider options for the site as it evolves. Please feel free to email us at redesign[at]nooka.com or leave a comment below.

groovy nooz


well, today is my birthday. i started it by going to the gym, something i've been very lax with the past 2+ years! got to the office, wrote a bitchy blog post [seen below], had chinese take out with my team [we did a fancy b-day lunch for me yesterday as alex is off to thailand for vacation today, and he wanted to be a part of it], and then caught up with the nitty gritty of holding a design biz together.

i am actually writing this blog to let you know about our fire engine red nooka strip [belt]. i know i designed it and it may seem that i'm supposed to say this, but seriously, i LOVE this product. here it is on our e-store but the photo is a bit more electric than the reality – it's really fire engine red. goes great with my sounds good neon yellow hoodie [thanks yu in tokyo for the hoodie!] and zem watch.

i'm also wearing one of my favorite t-shirts from graniph in this foto which leads to a really exciting upcoming news bite – yours truly, matthew waldman, will be a featured designer for an upcoming t-shirt promotion! more on that soon...


one show updates?

i feel i have to blog about something that has been quite troublesome the past few weeks – students publishing their submissions for the nooka X one show competition.

from my few discussions via email and twitter, it seems that some students felt that they could publish on their own after they submitted. do students not read rules, terms and conditions? it clearly states in the forms:

"Submissions may not be published without the prior written consent of Nooka, provided that, entrant shall have the right to include the submission in his or her portfolio following the official announcement of the Competition winners by One Show."


it's frustrating that i have to explain this, but i do realize that the students do not have real world client experience. to them, please ask yourself: would an ad agency publish a client advertisement with out their input? would they publish work created for a client without getting paid? only the client can give feedback on their core values and whether or not the work produced reflects them.

publishing the work outside of the context of the one show competition shows a complete disregard for normal design process and the client, which in this case, is nooka. it's a competition, and the rules and regulations of competitions are specially crafted to protect the client and the applicants.

a few more questions for the students:

publishing the work outside the context of the one show creates confusion for my customers. is "confusion" a core value you want to promote as your special skill when you're looking for a job?

this is not to say that a lot of the work i'm seeing isn't good, but is it not the job of the fine judges the one club has gone through much expense to assemble to decide? how do you think your work will be viewed for originality if they saw it before the judging?

i hate to sound like a curmudgeon, but this is simply an issue of context and a key point of design that can not be ignored. publishing out of the context of the one club runs the risk of the submission being disqualified. publishing any work using another person or company's trademark opens you up to even greater problems.

so if you're happy to bypass the one club, that's cool, but you must add this to your work and to all the people/sites posting:
"Nooka" is a registered trademark of Nooka Inc. (all rights reserved) and may not be used without its express written permission. Nooka Inc. has not reviewed and does not endorse any products, concepts or viewpoints expressed on this website, and no business relationship with Nooka Inc. is implied through any use of its trademark.

here is a link to a student project published the correct way, and yes, it won awards!


Lady 2 Colors by Rungphan Burootchati



Exhibition : Lady 2 Colors Painting Exhibition
by Rungphan Burootchati
on February 15 - March 15, 2010
at 2nd Floor, The Exhibition Room 228, River City Shopping Complex, Bangkok

Rungphan Burootchati creates the paintings of nude ladies, entitled the “Lady 2 Colors” painting exhibition
The exhibit focuses on his colorful, fresh, violent, and candid paintings, depicted the aesthetic and the enchantment of female bodies with the techniques of watercolor and acrylic.
The artist intends to evince his vision with art, without the passion and obscenity, and the several colors are chosen to complicit about decreased the meaning and the feeling of lust and indelicacy.

Spirit of Memory by Peeraphol Sripakananon



Exhibition : Spirit of Memory
by Peeraphol Sripakananon
on February 15 - March 15, 2010
at 227 Room, 2nd Floor, River City Shopping Complex, Bangkok

Thai painting of Peeraphol Sripakananon, a skilled artist, passed on Thai literature with technique of acrylic, oil color, and mix – media such as Hanuman, Thai traditional dramatic performance, Rum-Tad - a form of entertainment consisting of two groups of singers singing impromptu songs, the puppet show, and the Knone drama.
The imaginations of the artist’s childhood mixed with his feeling are depicted on canvas with the image dimensions.

VAP by graduate students Faculty of Fine Arts



“VAP” Art Exhibition

by graduate students Faculty of Fine Arts Chiangmai university

25-26 February 2010
At the first floor (back gallery)

CMU art center

Extinct Singapore Films

This is a response to the Nearly got FOOLED on This,dated on Feb 17,2010.

The 1st impression that it gives me is that it is a series of old movie remastered into a DVD. But to my disappointment,in the DVD case,it is an empty case.

I was initially wowed by the DVD and thought "eh, CD-rama is a great store selling exclusive old movies in DVD,but got to know from the brochure that the 5 films on the case are old films which are "lost".

This is not real,but it is a Campaign.

This is a campaign as part of Asian Film Archive's 5th Anniversary and the ‘Save Our Film’campaign aims to raise awareness of Singapore's rich local film heritage and the importance of keeping it alive for our future. Targeting youth aged 15 to 35, the initiative shows them the value of local films and encourages them to seek out local film memories from their elders,thereby using local films to breach the generation gap through collective film memories.

Here are some events that are of the past and upcoming

1. 'Save Our Film' posters have been put up at Shaw, Filmgarde and Cathay cineplexes, the Substation and Sinema Old School until the end of February when the campaign ends.
Also,'Save Our Film' DVDs have been placed on the shelves of HMV, selected Popular CD-Rama and Gramophone outlets and Sinema Old School.These posters and DVDs promote five early Singapore film titles, with the twist that these films are lost. The public can share information they have on these and other missing films on the campaign website's Singapore Lost Films Wiki.

2. From 6 to 27 February, flash mob style 10-minute video projections will be screened at mystery locations every Saturday. The video features interviews with prominent community members who share their best film memories. Some of these personal tributes include Baba Peter Wee, First Vice-President of the Peranakan Association, whose grandfather owned the Alhambra and Marlborough theatres, Wong Han Min, a Singapore film memorabilia collector and Willy Why, former cameraman for Cathay-Keris Films with over 45 years of filmmaking experience.

3. Singaporeans are invited to share their film memories in the first-ever public Call for Memories. This can be done by recording a video of themselves or others sharing their memorable local film experiences and uploading the video on the AFA Youtube channel. This Call is open for the length of the campaign from 1st to 28th February 2010. The first ten best uploaded video clips stand a chance to win a free DVD of Singapore Shorts Vol. 2 as well. More details on the Call for Memories can be found on AFA's website.

4. The closing event of the ‘Save Our Film’ campaign will screen the best video clips from the Call for Memories on a roving television travelling down the length of Orchard Road and ending at The Cathay. At the same time, we will take this opportunity to engage the public in conversation with us to share the joys of watching local films.

Event 3 and 4 are the upcomings for the campaign.

For More Information,please go to http://asianfilmarchive.org/5th

Let us save our film,so that they will be enjoyed by the future Generations the way that the film were meant to be seen!

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind


"Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind". This is one of the movies that I ought to get the DVD one day. Came across the show last Sunday night on Okto channel part of FilmArt. Curious to see how a show featuring Jim Carrey can somehow be part of the supposedly artful FilmArt (well, with the exception of "The Truman Show", I always feel his movie is just a plain, hilarious comedy).

I also had a vague sense of recognition about the movie's title. After browsing my own posts in the past (yeah, I can be that pathetic, alright), I realize that there was a post almost related: "Eternal Moonshine of the Simpson Mind | Picture a day for 39 years".

Rotten Tomatoes has Tomatometer (heh, cute) indicates 93% for "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind". More about the plot (and spoiler, and so you've been warned) in Wikipedia post on the show here.

PS. The YouTube trailers of "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind": here and (longer one) here.

Outrageous: Jesus Christ holds a beer can and a cigarette

The latest righteous fury among Christians in India over the blasphemous picture of Jesus Christ holding a beer can and a cigarette is in retrospect not exactly a new, uhm, news. Sometimes in Aug 2007, a similar incident happened in Malaysia. Again, it featured (in bad taste), Jesus Christ holding a cigarette.

Sigh. Those Who Forget History Are Doomed to Repeat It, indeed...

CHRISTIANS in India's northeast are outraged after a picture showing Jesus Christ holding a beer can and a cigarette was discovered in primary school textbooks.

The image appeared in a handwriting book for children in church-run schools in the Christian-majority state of Meghalaya, where it was used to illustrate the letter 'I' for the word 'Idol'.

'We are deeply shocked and hurt at the objectionable portrayal of Jesus Christ in the school book. We condemn the total lack of respect for religions by the publisher,' Shillong diocese Archbishop Dominic Jala told AFP.

Police said they were hunting for the owner of the New Delhi-based publisher, Skyline Publications, who faces charges of offending religious sentiment, local police superintendent A.R. Mawthoh told AFP.

The Roman Catholic Church in India has banned all textbooks by Skyline, while Protestant leaders called for a public apology. The state government also denounced the publication. 'We strongly condemn such a blasphemous act. Legal action has been initiated against the publisher,' M. Ampareen Lyngdoh, an education minister in the Meghalaya government, said.

English-language daily The Shillong Times said Skyline had apologised for 'hurting people's religious sentiments", but had offered no explanation as to how the error occurred. Efforts are underway to recall all copies of the book, the publisher was quoted as saying.

From Straits Times, "Outrage over boozing Jesus".(22/02/10)

A newspaper catering to Malaysia’s ethnic Indians published a front-page apology Thursday for printing an image of Jesus Christ holding a cigarette.

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi criticized the action as hurtful and an insult to Christians, and called on people not to play with religion, the national news agency Bernama reported.

“If the Christians get to know about it, it will create problems,” Abdullah was quoted as saying. “I remind them again to stop doing this.”

Mistake
S.M. Periasamy, general manager of the Tamil-language daily Makkal Osai, told The Associated Press that the newspaper published the image by mistake.

“The graphic artist, whom we have already suspended, didn’t see the cigarette,” Periasamy said. “It was a mistake.”

He said the artist downloaded an image of Jesus from the Internet for use along with a quote from the Bible on the paper’s front page Tuesday. But the artist overlooked the fact that the image had been, with a cigarette in one hand and another object — a can or a book — in the other, he said.

Kuala Lumpur Archbishop Murphy Pakiam, who earlier criticized the image as a “desecration,” accepted the newspaper’s apology. In an e-mail to Periasamy, the archbishop’s office said Pakiam now “considers the matter closed.”

'Serious issue'
However, the Malaysian Indian Congress, a party in Malaysia’s ruling coalition, filed a police report and called on the government to close the paper, which has generally been critical of the MIC.

“It’s a very serious issue. For certain things you can apologize, but for this kind of sensitive issue, the editor should be sacked and the paper closed,” senior party official T. Mohan told the AP.

Makkal Osai is one of two newspapers catering to Malaysia’s largely Tamil-speaking ethnic Indians. The other is aligned to the MIC.

Ethnic Indians comprise 10 percent of Malaysia’s 26 million people, and are mostly Hindus with a sprinkling of Christians and Muslims; Chinese, who follow Christianity and Buddhism, 25 percent; Malay Muslims, 60 percent.

From MSNBC, "Malaysia paper apologizes over Jesus photo". (23/08/07)

Christians in India's northeast are outraged after a picture showing Jesus Christ holding a beer can and a cigarette was discovered in primary school textbooks.

The image appeared in a handwriting book for children in church-run schools in the Christian-majority state of Meghalaya, where it was used to illustrate the letter "I" for the word "Idol".

"We are deeply shocked and hurt at the objectionable portrayal of Jesus Christ in the school book. We condemn the total lack of respect for religions by the publisher," Shillong diocese Archbishop Dominic Jala told AFP.

Police said they were hunting for the owner of the New Delhi-based publisher, Skyline Publications, who faces charges of offending religious sentiment, local police superintendent A.R. Mawthoh told AFP.

The Roman Catholic Church in India has banned all textbooks by Skyline, while Protestant leaders called for a public apology.

The state government also denounced the publication.

"We strongly condemn such a blasphemous act. Legal action has been initiated against the publisher," M. Ampareen Lyngdoh, an education minister in the Meghalaya government, said.

English-language daily The Shillong Times said Skyline had apologised for "hurting people's religious sentiments", but had offered no explanation as to how the error occurred.

Efforts are underway to recall all copies of the book, the publisher was quoted as saying.

AFP was unable to reach Skyline for comment.

Christians account for 2.3 percent of India's billion-plus Hindu-majority population. The main concentrations are in the northeast, the eastern state of Orissa and in the southern states of Kerala and Goa.

In 2008, anti-Christian riots in Orissa left more than 100 people dead, according to Christian groups, after missionaries were accused of killing a Hindu holy man.

From Google News, "Boozing Jesus image outrages India's Christians". (22/02/10)

Budget 2010 New Tax Relief: wife relief & spouse relief

What I like best about Singapore's Budget for 2010 is of course the relief part, specifically how wife relief shall expand to spouse relief.

Now that is a perfect example of equality of sexes. For families where the wife is the breadwinner, she will be able to claim spouse relief.

Will that encourage more Singaporeans males venture to be househusbands? Heh. Why not? Equality of sexes, after all, right? The males ought to be given a chance. Perhaps after a period of being a househusband, the male might be more motivated to return to the working life & strive not to be a househusband EVER to be a better breadwinner. Grin.

At his speech outlining Singapore's Budget for 2010, Finance Minister announced new tax reliefs for Singaporeans.

# Increase in parent relief, as well as an enhancement of the relief for taxpayers who are taking care of handicapped parents and grandparents.

# Expansion of wife relief to spouse relief. Wives who are taxpayers can claim a a spouse relief of $2,000, similar to the current scheme for husbands. This will help families where the wife is the breadwinner.

# Enhancing dependant reliefs.The income threshold for dependant-related reliefs will be increased from $2,000 to $4,000. his increase recognises taxpayers' efforts in supporting family members who are genuinely dependant, while giving them the flexibility to do some incidental work.

# Increased course fee relief. This will be increased from $3,500 to $5,500 with effect from Year of Assessment 2011.

# Support for charitable giving. The 250% tax deduction for donations to Institutions of Public Character (IPCs) and other approved institutions will be extended for an additional year.

From Asiaone, "Budget 2010: New tax reliefs".

The government has introduced a slew of tax reliefs to support families, especially the middle-income and those with elderly and handicapped dependants.

For a start, those taking care of their parents and grandparents can expect greater tax relief. Wives who are taxpayers can also claim a spouse relief of $2,000 - similar to the current scheme for husbands.

Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam announced the measures in his 2010 Budget Statement on Monday.

The income threshold for dependant-related reliefs will also go up from $2,000 to $4,000.

Mr Tharman said this increase recognises taxpayers' efforts in supporting family members who are genuinely dependent, while giving them the flexibility to do some incidental work.

And in recognition of the extra resources needed to take care of the disabled, the income threshold for handicapped dependant-related relief will be removed.

For the elderly, there will be a one-off top-up of the CPF-Medisave Accounts of older Singaporeans aged 50 and above.

The older you are, the more you get.

For example, most Singaporeans aged 50 to 59 will get a top-up of between S$200 and S$300. Those aged 70 and above will get about twice as much, at S$400 to S$500. The majority of those aged 60 to 69 will get a top-up of $300 to $400.

The Medisave top-up will benefit about one million Singaporeans and cost the government S$310m.

An additional S$200m will also be set aside for Medifund - which supports needy Singaporeans - and another S$200m for the ElderCare Fund to meet longterm healthcare needs.

For families with children, they can look forward to further top-up of the Post Secondary Education Accounts (PSEA).

For example, children in primary school will get S$200 in their accounts while those between 13 and 20 years old will receive up to S$500.

650,000 young Singaporeans will benefit from the additional top-up, which will cost the government S$230m.

Other tax reliefs include those aimed at lifelong learning and encouraging donations to charities.

Tax relief for course fees will go up from S$3,500 to S$5,500, while the enhanced tax deductions for donations will be extended for another year.

All in, S$1.4 billion will be transferred to households this year.

Including the Workfare Income Supplement (WIS) scheme targeted at low-income workers, the total sum transferred to households is S$1.8 billion.

From Channel NewsAsia, "Singapore govt unveils slew of tax reliefs for households".

Singaporeans will continue to benefit from top-ups announced in previous budgets - such as the fourth and last tranche of GST Credits and Senior Citizens' Bonus, and U-Save, S&CC and HDB rental rebates.

Apart from this, Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam will provide additional special top-ups in this year's Budget to help older Singaporeans as well as families with children.

* Top-up to CPF Medisave Accounts. Older Singaporeans aged 50 and above will get a one-off top-up to their CPF Medisave Accounts, with most receiving a top-up of $200 to $300. Majority of those aged 60 to 69 will get a top-up of $300 to $400, while those aged 70 and above will receive a top-up of $400 to $500. This will cost the government $310 million.

* Top-ups to Medicare and ElderCare Fund. $200 million will be set aside in this year's Budget for Medifund which supports needy Singaporeans and another $200 million for the ElderCare Fund.

* Top-up to Post-Secondary Education Accounts. Children in primary school will receive up to $200 in their accounts, while those between 13 and 20 years old will receive up to $500. This will cost the Government $230 million.

All the measures will translate to $1.4 billion this year in direct transfers for households.

Mr Tharman gave two examples to illustrate: "The first is a low-income household, around the 20th percentile of the population, staying in a three-room HDB flat. The family comprises two working adults in their 30s, earning $1,800 and $800 a month, and an elderly parent in her 60s. The wife will receive $1,100 in WIS (including a special payment this year). Together with their GST Credits, Senior Citizens' Bonus, and Medisave top-up for the elderly parent, and their U-Save, S&CC and property tax rebates, the family can expect to receive about a total of $2,900 in benefits in 2010."

"The benefits for a middle-income family, say a five-room HDB household between the 60th and 70th percentile of incomes, will also be significant. There are two working parents, with neither eligible for WIS. However, with two children, one in secondary school and the other in polytechnic, the family will receive PSEA top-ups. In total, it will receive about $1,700 in benefits."

From Asiaone, "Budget 2010: Additional special top-ups to support households".

Cogent Holdings IPO

Cogent Holdings IPO at $0.22 per share & closing date is 23 Feb. There are total 92 million new shares & the net proceeds is planned for the expansion of the group's container depot operations and warehousing space. Quite interested. Considering...considering...

On another not-so-related note, 'cogent' is also an adjective which means:
1. convincing or believable by virtue of forcible, clear, or incisive presentation; telling.
2. to the point; relevant; pertinent.

Good omen, if one is to be superstitious. Heh.

Homegrown logistics group Cogent Holdings plans to raise net proceeds of S$9.1 million in an initial public offering in Singapore.

It plans to list on SGX's mainboard and is offering 92 million new shares at 22 cents each.

Cogent is a full-service logistics management service provider in Singapore.

The group provides trucking services for both laden and empty containers between ports and warehouses, as well as transportation for oil and gas equipment.

It also manages and leases approximately 4 million square feet of warehousing space and premises, as part of its warehousing and container depot management services business.

In 2008, Cogent expanded into the automotive logistics business, offering a comprehensive spectrum of services for the processing, transportation and storage of motor vehicles.

Cogent plans to use the main bulk of the net proceeds for the expansion of the group's container depot operations and warehousing space.

From Channel NewsAsia, "Cogent plans to raise net proceeds of S$9.1m in IPO".

Homegrown logistics group Cogent Holdings, plans to raise net proceeds of $9.1 million in an initial public offering in Singapore. The company plans to list on the Singapore Exchange Mainboard and is offering 92 million new shares at 22 cents each.

Cogent is a full-service logistics management service provider in Singapore which provides trucking services between ports and warehouses as well as transportation for oil and gas equipment.

It manages and leases approximately 4 million square feet of warehousing space and premises as part of its warehousing and container depot management services business.

In 2008, Cogent expanded into the automotive logistics business, offering a comprehensive spectrum of services for processing, transporting and storing motor vehicles.

Cogent plans to use the main bulk of the net proceeds or about $6.1 million for the expansion of the Group's container depot operations and warehousing space.

Another $2 million is for the expansion of its vehicle logistics operations and the remaining $1 million is for working capital purposes.

From Today, "Cogent Holdings plans IPO".

'Newton' by Ho Tzu Nyen, reviewed by Mathias Ortmann


Ho Tzu Nyen is a joker and one of Singapore’s most distinct filmmakers; probably the country’s most intellectually inclined director. At times his playing with media conventions and the inherent self-referentiality of film can be a bit heavy-handed and clogging but there is a well developed sense of humour in there as well. His new short film “Newton” aptly (or shortly) proves the point. It was one among a total of eleven films by Singaporeans to be screened at Rotterdam International Film Festival this year – a nice crop. “Newton” for one isn’t too demanding a piece, neither in terms of duration nor otherwise, a mere stimulus of a film, really. And it doesn’t even require multiple viewing, because it is itself made up of a four time replay of a 1 minute loop.
The idea is as simple as it is intriguing: a visual pun on the concept of the artist as the author of his own inspiration. An albino white male is seen asleep in a medium shot and a clinically neutral setting, sterile, when from high up on a shelf with three nondescript books on it a white bound volume hits him on the head. This timelessly square, Newton-ish “apple” has its very own gravity to reveal – that of the blank page, literally. Reading the book that singled him out, the protagonist (let’s call him our hero) turns white page upon white page, then sets to writing himself. He apparently types nothing (or any such whiteness) into his document, prints it out clean as a bed sheet and fixes the papers to a clipboard. Thus prepared he picks up the bullhorn to shout “Action!” straight into the camera. What this canny director sets into motion is no other plot line than the one that caused this effect in the first place: someone from behind the wall with that bookshelf attached on the opposite side, now pokes out exactly the one item that is destined to fall onto the head of its inventor – our hero.

Please read it whichever way you like, backwards, forwards, or four times in a row – the bottom line is always the same: The artist, even the greatest of his kind, the film director, is but his own happy puppet and favourite fool. Imagination, up to the most phantasmagorical invention, may reveal whatever it will about its source, but divine intervention is not one among them. As “Newton” proves to be the case, this is an empirical observation and easily verifiable. Try, anyone?
Based in Berlin, Mathias Ortmann writes profoundly and intensively about Singapore films. Many of his writings can be found on the Sinema website. This review by Mathias has been written exclusively for SINdie.

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