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Tuesday, July 26, 2005

monkey's message

translation: monkey sick. no blog this week.
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Tuesday, July 19, 2005


I've been inundated with sms-es that many of you were not invited
so let me clarify that only FOOD writers were invited.
regards - dave
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"Nuff said... Posted by Picasa
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Monday, July 18, 2005


répondez s'il vous plaît (French)
please reply

Here’s a simple concept: to invite people to an event, you send them an invitation. In this invitation, you list the event, date, time and place. You may even suggest a suitable form of dressing if appropriate.

Here’s another simple concept: you request for an RSVP. This will be of tremendous help to the host with regards to the logistics of seating arrangements, catering of food and wine, parking arrangements and all the hassle that comes with throwing a party.

Unfortunately, the concept of RSVP is lost on Malaysians. While I realize that this is a very sweeping and generalized statement, consider the facts: I was asked by a friend who owns a restaurant and had relocated nearby to arrange for some press coverage.

Being the smart fellow that I thought I was, I asked him if he would sponsor a press get-together cum restaurant review. Being the smart businessman that he is, he agreed to lay on a sumptuous buffet lunch, wine, beer and juices.

I promptly emailed and invited 40 colleagues in the press. I asked for an RSVP. Except for two female Caucasians and 1 female local reporter, I didn’t get the courtesy of an RSVP. So with one day to go before the get together, I started calling up everyone I had emailed.

Of course, being the hard working press people that they are most were not in. So I left a message to call me. Only one did. I sms-ed those whose mobile numbers I had. Two replies.

I called my restaurateur friend and told him to cancel the buffet and replace it with a la minute orders as I wasn’t sure of the turn-up and didn’t want him to waste food.

On the day of the get-together, four people turn up. We actually have a good time chatting and eating. Moral of the story? It makes me wonder – if we can do this to people who want to give us free food wine and beer, what will we do to our enemies?

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Sunday, July 10, 2005

can you really decipher women...?  Posted by Picasa
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Saturday, July 09, 2005

How To Decipher Women

Have you ever noticed how a woman not interested in you (for example, a happily married woman) has no problem interacting with you breezily and confidently, whereas a woman who ultimately turned out to be interested was a much tougher nut to crack?

That's because the interested woman sees you as a potential mate, and wants to put you through tests to see if you're worthy. And someone putting you through tests will automatically be much more on her guard, as she's preparing, if you pass, to put herself in a vulnerable position with you.

Obvious enough, right?

Sure, but the important point is not why this is happening, but how you can get her to let her guard down, the better to penetrate her inner sanctum of happiness and become part of it, even if just for one night. The goal here is to say something that has the same effect as "I'm married" (i.e. "I'm not a threat to pick you up"). Once you've gotten her to be more herself and have gained her trust, you two are ready to roll.

Read on to find out what to do, and what not to do, to get a woman feeling more relaxed around you while you chat her up.

Bring up an interesting topic
A good general topic is celebrity relationships, which many women enjoy discussing. One possible way you could sidle up to this one is to start a conversation about recent movies you've seen. But since that doesn't work for everybody, your best move is to ask her about herself in a playful manner, e.g. "What does an attractive woman like you do for fun?" That gets a compliment out there while also entreating her to talk about herself. Remember; as Dale Carnegie said, those considered the best conversationalists are the best listeners.

Get her opinion
While chatting, don't simply talk about current events, for example, without delving deeper. How does she feel about what you're talking about? You can start out with something simple like favorite movie stars, but do try to elicit her opinions. "Why do you think Brad Pitt just left her like that?" "Do you think he did the right thing?" Ask her opinion before necessarily divulging yours (or she might just parrot you), but not always, or it will become formulaic ("What do you think about this?" "What about that?" etc.) and she will feel compromised, in that she's always stating her position without knowing yours, making her vulnerable.

Eliciting her opinion serves several purposes:

1. It shows you really care about what she thinks.
2. Whether you agree or disagree, you can turn it to your advantage. If you agree: you have something in common, and can talk further on the subject. If you disagree: you can start playfully teasing her about her opinion. Teasing leads the way to sexual teasing and innuendo, which spices things up.

Try to agree more at first, to make her feel an affinity with you. Once you've established a little common ground, you can start to disagree more (cue teasing). Never disagree with everything she says, no matter what your opinion, or you'll seem like a jerk. Agree too much, however, and she'll see you either as her soul mate (if she's searching for one) or spineless (if she's on the prowl like you).

If a woman is very reluctant to divulge her opinions, it may well be a sign that either a) she is not interested in you, or b) she is boring. Neither is good, so move on.

Make like Chris Rock and if that doesn't work, call your regular weed supplier and head to the happy place -- it may just garner you a happy ending...

Make her laugh
The ultimate weapon. If you can make a woman laugh, you're more than halfway home. Laughter loosens up conversation and the overall pickup. The thing is, it has to be natural, not planned. Women's No. 1 turn-on is confidence, and approaching with a pat pickup line or joke to tell means you're resorting to a formula. Just be yourself, and hopefully that's a funny, spontaneous self.

Bring her to a happy place & stay positive
Maybe you're not the funniest guy in the world. There are still other ways to rub her conversational belly without necessarily bringing her to tears of laughter. Make her feel positive by talking about happy subjects -- vacation, for example. She's either been on one recently and can tell you about that, or will be going soon and is excited with anticipation. Either way, it's a more positive subject than famine in Africa.

It doesn't have to be only fluffy subjects, though. You can talk about politics, if that's what she's into, but make light of it along the way, ridiculing people as you see fit or, even safer, the system in general. If you can show a woman that you can see the lighter side of any issue, you then become her chaperone to light-hearted times and represent a refreshing escape from the duties that define our daily routines.

Call her on her "bitch shield"
If she is giving you a hard time or obviously putting effort into being standoffish, say something like "Why are you so cold?" or "How's being crabby working out for ya?" Oftentimes, after being called on their behavior, women will snap out of it and reverse their attitude, opening up just to prove you wrong. No matter, your goal of having her open up is achieved.

Give her an original compliment...
Tell a girl she has nice eyes when she doesn't and it will seem so mechanical, you might as well insult her. On the other hand, try to steer clear of obvious compliments. You'll get a lot more bang from a compliment she hasn't heard before. Compliment her belt, watch, shoes -- whatever. The goal is to get her to crack a smile.

The key, obviously, is to be observant. I happen to be a very visual person, which goes over extremely well -- when used properly. Instead of "You have nice lips," I'll say something like "Your lips are such a great shape. Good proportion, bottom lip just the right amount of pouty, but not so pouty that I could sit on it... Your whole lip/lipstick combination, it really works." A confident, tongue-in-cheek delivery is important.

Complimenting her ensemble is a good move because you can point out that it's well put together (to her credit), and also that it looks good on her (which is to her credit, in that she knows what flatters her, and also a straight up "you're hot" compliment). This makes her feel noticed and appreciated, so that she'll feel less insecure and will relax more.

Rather than giving many little compliments, try to use one solid, original showstopper. Look misty-eyed and distracted, as if mesmerized by what you're about to compliment. This will effectively "stop the show."

Use Negative Hits
If you fawn all over her and never give her a dose of reality, she will quickly grow tired of your overly positive, wolf-crying chatter. Hot women don't need another fan club, they need a challenge. Breaking up conversation with the odd Negative Hit or tease (adapted to her personality, of course) will tell her she can also speak her mind freely. Then, watch the sparks fly.

Be honest about playing the field
Don't come out and tell her that you're doing so, but if the subject of pickups does come up (for example, if you make the crack in the previous section), you definitely shouldn't lie about your success. (e.g. "I've done alright for myself, thanks. But hey, weren't we talking about needlework or some other pressing matter?") If you treat it like it's no big deal, you will a) show confidence, and b) give her an idea of the truth without being blunt, so there will be no surprises later about your lack of interest in having a girlfriend.

Talk to her wingwoman
If you're not getting too much traction with your target, talk to her friend. It always pays to get in good with the friends, as their opinion is valued, and your woman's jealousy at the attention she's suddenly not getting could well work in your favor. Don't come on too strong with her friend or you'll look like a letch; just be interested and gentlemanly. Then, when they're powdering their noses, her wingwoman will tell your target, "He's cute. If you're not interested, I might go for him." However that conversation ends, you're set.

Don't talk about sex right away
Let her get comfortable with you before you introduce the subject. And when you do bring it up, it should obviously be in a joking way. You can say something like: "Look at all these guys here trying to pick up. Like dogs in heat, I tell ya."

Turn a cliché around
Instead of the usual "Can I buy you a drink?" say something like, "I know you're usually forced to buy drinks for guys at the bar and risk rejection by making the first move, so I thought I'd go against the grain and offer you a drink instead." Otherwise, you might say out of the blue, "A drink? Why yes, so nice of you to offer, I'd love a drink! You're some forward girl. I'll have to be careful with you. Let's see, what would I like to drink..." etc.

Dance around her
Give her a sexual vibe by paying attention to her on the dance floor, but don't invade her personal space. You want her to feel attracted, not creeped out.

Don't jump to conclusions
Nothing makes a person clam up faster than if they feel they've been pigeonholed. Let's say you give her the up and down and, based on her low-cut jeans and bellybutton ring, ask her out of the blue what she thinks of the latest Christina Aguilera album. She'll either think you obviously take her for a fan based on her attire, or else, if she has low self-esteem, she may feel silly for not having an opinion.

Never assume, always ask. If you want to bring up this subject, sidle up to it, or just ask her what her musical interests are. Then, when you bring up Aguilera, it will seem more like it's also your interest (which she may indeed share), rather than something you've projected onto her.

In the end, study all these ideas beforehand rather than over-thinking them on the fly, then just be your charming self. Remember; you have to be confident and natural if you want a woman to mirror you.

Disclaimer: Dave Avran has the most pathetic record with women on this planet so any advice on that particular subject coming from him should be taken with a huge pinch of sodium chloride. You have been warned. So there.

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Sunday, July 03, 2005

looking at life through rose tinted glasses. Posted by Picasa
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I attend a lot of events in the course of my work, and am generally a very social person so I’m always being asked “where’s the other half?” The truth is there is no other half. Hasn’t been for some time now, since I got dumped just before my illness in 2003.

I have no interest in a relationship at the moment. I'm battling a serious weight problem as the steroids I have to take to control my condition causes water retention and I've put on a shitload of lard. Sure, if it happens it would be great as in the hustle and bustle of this crazy world we all crave a little companionship, but I'm not holding my alcohol-laced breath.
I’ve noticed some guys, however, seem to be better at finding it than others. There are those who can reel in the women with ease, while others struggle like amateur anglers using cotton tied to a drinking straw.

Being single for too long can have some profound ill effects, and not just on your libido. Fly solo for an extended period of time and you'll go beyond just losing your game - you'll turn you into a socially-contorted creature that would make Frankenstein seem like Brad Pitt.

There are no women in your life

Not only have you stopped dating, your life is devoid of any female companionship whatsoever. You have no female friends. Colleagues of the opposite sex at work seem to avoid you. Your friends won't even talk to you about women anymore, either because they're embarrassed to or figure that you're so out of the loop that you'll have nothing meaningful to contribute to the discussion.

If the only female relationship you have is with your mother, then you need to change that - quick. The influence of a maternal figure over too long a period of time can be very detrimental, particularly to the chronic bachelor. As far-fetched as it may seem, you may come to unwittingly rate the women you meet on how they measure up to your mama. If you find yourself looking for a love interest that wears floral blouses, has a '70s perm and will tuck you in at night... seek help, dude.

You're desperate

Loneliness is a terrible thing, and desperation is its ugly child. There are some key signs that desperation has taken hold of your mind like a giant mutant squid. An extreme example could be that you're considering putting in for a mail-order bride. Whatever you may tell yourself, there is nothing chivalrous about joining in matrimony with an unseen woman that makes her living collecting pennies from wishing wells in a country ravaged by civil war.

Of course, there are other more subtle signs of desperation (more subtle, but really not subtle at all). Owning a blow-up doll is definitely one, as is referring to it as your "companion" or "life partner." You know you've truly hit rock bottom when your family suggests that your cousin is still single, and you actually start to see the logic behind such an arrangement.

You don't care about etiquette

The influence of a woman is usually the only thing keeping men presentable. In the absence of one you will see your sense of etiquette slowly disappear, like an asteroid into a black hole.

It starts with a general disheveled appearance, then dining manners become a thing of the past. Things escalate from here, and soon you're eating like a literal pig - quickly and without utensils, accompanied by a chorus of bodily noises like farts, burps or both at the same time. Not that you need food or any other props to repulse the opposite sex when in the company of females you have no discretion about scratching your crotch or readjusting your underpants -- sometimes using both hands.

You're addicted to porn

There's a good chance that you need to get out more when your primary form of entertainment is pornography. There's cause for concern when you get upgraded to VIP status at your local vcd stall, and all new arrivals are sms-ed to you under "Gold Status." If said new arrivals are the opening step in a weekend celebration that involves breaking out the "Pleasure Box," complete with lotions, pumps and inflatable "companion," It's time to re-evaluate your priorities.

A porn obsession becomes especially dangerous when it begins to poison the rest of your life. It should be worrying when you take to referring to everyone in your office by porn star-style names, like calling Tricia in accounting "Trish the Dish."

You're looking to science

You've given up on finding a real female companion, and are now looking to the world of science to provide you with one. You follow any developments in the fields of bioengineering and virtual reality with great interest. In fact, you may have even sketched out some of your own blueprints you drew on a cocktail napkin. You may not be conscious of this secret wish, but it's always in the back of your mind. And you really need to shake it, because it's just not healthy.

People think you're gay

Because you don't hang around women and there's no evidence that you have any interest in them, people start believing that you swing the other way. Maybe you've noticed that a usually foul-mouthed homophobic colleague is rather PC in your presence. Or maybe your buddy has started bringing his gay cousin George over all the time, and people seem to always be prodding you two to chat or leaving you in rooms alone together.

Don't get angry at them for jumping to conclusions. Since you spend all your time preparing get-togethers with buddies and none of it on dates with women, what do you expect them to think?

You read too much into things

Your unfortunate addiction to pornography has shrouded you in a fantasy life where all women desire you. Every innocent encounter with a female becomes loaded with meaning. When the chick at the drive-through window hands you your burger and fries and says, "Have a nice day," you hear, "I want you now."

When the girl in the elevator takes a second glance at the piece of food on your tie, you read it as a soul-searching gaze of passion, and start daydreaming of an erotic rendezvous in the broom closet. Even the bag lady on the corner seems to purse her lips at your stature.

Every kind gesture and polite nod has you believing that love is in the cards. But take a look at your hand and you'll see that you're really holding the Joker.

You're awkward around women

A good reason why you have no relationships with women is because you have no clue how to behave around them. You stare at women, and when they catch you doing so, believe that they're not just flattered, but aroused (another unfortunate offshoot of your pornography addiction). When you actually string together a few dates with a girl, you blow it by doing something weird like buying her lingerie on the third date (you've been out of the dating world for so long that you've forgotten the proper sequence of a relationship).

If all that's not weird enough, you're mean to women. You'll be cruel to them in front of your friends, just to show the guys that it's not that you can't pick up, but that you don't care about chicks. One-on-one, however, your true desperation will come out, and you'll be unusually nice -- sketching them out all the more.

You find faults in all women

Another unfortunate side-effect of being single for too long is excessive pickiness. You find faults with every woman you come across, and most of your criticisms have no basis in reality. You seek out ridiculous and microscopic flaws in even the most beautiful women: uneven teeth, wide pores, an elongated nose, or elbows that look like they might chafe you.

Maybe you've deluded yourself into thinking that you really are a superlative catch. But it's likely that you're now so frightened of pursuing women that you use artificial pickiness as an excuse not to do so.

single out bachelorhood

If any of these symptoms apply to you, not only do you need help, but you needed it six months ago. You've been alone too long and it's taking its toll on your physical and mental state. Read these signs for what they are and get back into the game. You need a hot injection of womanly love... pronto!

Come to think of it, so do I…
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