27 Things I Did When I Was 27.


1. Celebrated by birthday for the first time with my team of staff.

At 27, I became an owner of start-up business (in the traditional sense) for the first time. With that, I started hiring people to take care of my business.

It’s a lotta weight on my shoulders when people put their trust and career on my hands. But we’re like family at work. My birthday last year was particularly special because I spent it with a team I can proudly call my own.


2. Had LASIK surgery to permanently correct my eyesight. Best decision I’ve ever made.


3. Celebrated New Year’s Eve with the lovely Miss Singapore Universe Rachel Kum.

1 January 2010 was certainly a very memorable night for me. Heh.


4. Fulfilled my 6-year-old promise to Eddie.

Eddie is the guy who encouraged me to pick up marathon-running. 5 years ago I promised him I will one day travel to the USA to do the Los Angeles Marathon with him. I finally fulfilled that promise March this year.

It was easily the best marathon race I have ever done. Los Angeles is a beautiful city and people are very supportive of the race. I would go on and on about my trip to LA, but I’ll save that for a different blog post.


5. Drove a BMW convertible.

Love it. Too bad it ain’t mine. My friend Alex Wong was kind enough to lend me his house and car in LA while he embarked on his own ride of a lifetime – riding the distance from the tip of South America to North America, on a motorbike.


6. Met the king of late night talk shows, Jay Leno at the NBC studios. This was fresh after his rivalry with Conan O’Brien. His guest at the time was actually "The Rock" Dwayne Johnson, a wrestler I grew up watching.


7. Watched a live Lakers game at the famed Staples Centre. They kicked the Minnesota Timberwolves asses. In attendance was Jack Nicholson, Chris Brown and Tom Cruise.


8. Watched WWE Wrestlemania live in Pheonix, Arizona. Shawn Micheals! The Undertaker! Bret Hart! Triple H! It was my childhood dream come true.



9. After Wrestlemania, I drove 3 hours from Phoenix, Arizona to see one of the 7 Greatest Nature Wonder of the World – The Grand Canyon.


10. From The Grand Canyon, I need to drive to the airport 3 hours away.

I was short on time and I drove so fast that I earned myself my first international traffic violation – speeding. Cops in America cannot be bribed, so I copped a fine that costs USD232 (or RM720)!


11. Spent more time inside my fitness centre than at home. I ain’t complaining. Being a new business, a lot of times I have to be there physically to take care of the details and make on-the-spot decisions.


12. Went on self-driven road trips to Bali, Indonesia; Los Angeles, California; Austin, Texas; Phoenix, Arizona and Queenstown, New Zealand.

I went to Austin, Texas to visit my sister’s family after not seeing them for almost a year. I felt incredibly proud as an uncle to my three wonderful nephew and nieces, who remember me despite me spending so much time away from them.


13. Climbed the
Sydney Harbour Bridge! Wah!


14. Did adventure caving for the first time ever at Jenolan Caves, near Sydney. I won’t say it’s the most fun thing I did, but crawling through rocks and squeezing through holes is definitely interesting, in a challenging sorta way.


15. Lost a few friends, gained new ones.

An incident happened between 2 of my very close friends, inadvertently pulling me into the cross fires. Suddenly I find myself questioning if the friendship around me are genuine, or if I am being taken advantage of.

Thankfully, the incident is over now. I even gained a few new friends in the process.



16. Visited more gyms and fitness centres around the world than I ever had in my life. I enjoy seeing how fitness centres from other parts of the world operate and how mine stacks up against them.

It makes me envious that other gyms are more successful because people in bigger cities generally are more health-conscious.



17. Appeared on the front cover of a magazine for the first time!



18. Got my backpack stolen from inside my unlocked car. Inside my backpack are my laptop, camera, iPhone, foreign currencies and my all-important passport. Gone, all gone. It’s a painful lesson I’d rather not happen.


19. Got a nose job. Well, not really. It’s more like a nostril job, to stop me from snoring, but he also managed to make me breathe better.


20. Laid plans to expand Level Up Fitness by a further 5,000 square feet.


21. Dived at Lombok, Indonesia. Gili Trawangan is easily my favourite place for an island holiday after Bali.


22. Did the highest, scariest bungee jump in the world off Macau Tower. The jump was 143 metres high. That’s nearly 80 storey above the air!


23. Followed up with another bungee, falling backwards off The Ledge in Queenstown, New Zealand.


24. Earned my instructor license to teach RPM cycling classes. The training we were put through was brutal. I cycled so much that by the end of my training, I felt as if I had given birth to an exercise bike.


25. Drove, kayaked and trekked through Milford Sound, New Zealand. That place has the most jaw-dropping spectacular sceneries I have seen.


26. Scripted and recorded my first radio ad for Level Up Fitness. Writing an effective radio ad was difficult. Recording it was easy. Well, the guys at hitz.fm made it easy.


27. Spent the eve of my 28th birthday cold, alone and sleeping on the airport floor. My flight back from New Zealand back home was marred with one disaster after another.

First, my flight took off 15 hours later than usual due to Auckland airport’s runway problem. (Much thanks to Steph Chai who was in Auckland at the time to come out to meet me.) Then, my flight into Kuching cannot land due to bad weather. When I finally arrived Kuching, my airline lost my luggage! In the end, I missed out completely on my own birthday brunch and dinner. 🙁

That was 27 things I di
d when I was 27.

I am now 28 years old.

Tiger Translate 2010: Meet The Artists

Wellington – the heart of New Zealand’s politics, arts and culture.

Lonely Planet lists Wellington as one of the Top 10 cities to travel to in 2011, describing is as "the coolest little capital city in the world".

Wellington is a small city about the size of Kuching. Despite its tiny stature, the city is crammed with more bars, cafes and restaurants per capita than New York city. This ain’t your typical Canberra or Putrajaya. The capital of New Zealand is both interesting and inspiring, and it has such an aura of creativity, that I feel like I could draw just by being in here.

Meet Jon, nicknamed "Drypnz".


Jon’s artwork is not something you would see in a typical high-brow cool gallery. Born in England, Drypnz is a mural painter/street artist who moved to NZ 5 years ago to push his work to a more "understanding" community.

Jon’s signature is fat cat-like characters he called "Drypppls" – a representation of the decay of human beings in the modern society.

You’ll find them painted on building walls in the back alleys of Wellington. And heck,  – sometimes, even on the roof top.

While exhibiting his works at an art gallery for underground artists called Manky Chops, Jon met local street artist Joe Blak. And the two bonded over their interests in street graffiti.


Now meet Song Yang from China.

The creator of Chinese comic icon "Bad Girl" is also the most prolific comic artist in China.

How did Song Yang become so popular?

To curb the "problem" of Chinese youngsters going craze over imported Japanese manga, the Chinese government suppress imports and promotes Song Yang so much that he became popular throughout China. So much so that he even diversifies into fashion design, producing music videos and recording his own album.

The 29-year-old has done just about attempted every artistic endeavour possible, except one thing – street graffiti.

So when Jon and Joe invited him to paint a graffiti with them, Song Yang turned up like this.

Clearly, somebody got lost in translation.

Song Yang joins the 2 NZ-based artists and Oggy from Mongolia to headline tonight’s Tiger Translate at the Wellington Opera House.

Oggy is the winner of of the Mongolian leg of the Tiger Translate competition.

Unlike previous Tiger Translate events I attended, the direction these 4 artists take heading into the main event is slightly different.

Rather than starting on a big piece of work and complete it over one week, the four collaborating artists will be starting and finishing their artwork over 5 hours on the night itself at the Opera House.

This way, the audience gets to see how the artists get to transform blank canvases into masterpieces.

Since they met 4 days ago, the artists have been practising their collaboration non-stop in art galleries and building walls around Wellington.

From left to right are characters by "Eeks" Joe Blak (NZ), Oggy (Mongolia), Song Yang (China) and Jon "Drypnz" (NZ).

Street graffiti done Tiger-style.

The most overdressed graffiti painter in the world.

Can’t wait to see what transpires tonight. Whatever these four are gonna come up with, I’m sure it’s gonna be better than my Wellington "Tiger Sheep".



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Tiger Translate 2010: Road to Wellington

I’m writing this blog entry whilst en route to Wellington.

The administrative capital of New Zealand also happens to be the arts centre of the country. And this 26th November, it shall play host to the third and final leg of Tiger Translate in 2010.

This trip also marks the third time I’m attending Tiger Translate, after London 2 years ago and Copenhagen last year. But even after two years of attending this unique arts exhibition back-to-back, the freshness is still there and the anticipation still lingers.

This trip is particularly special.

New Zealand is the venue of the original Tiger Translate. It was 5 years ago Tiger Beer gave birth the concept of a unique arts exhibition that brings together established artists from the West with emerging young artists from the East. The event became so successful that it now occurs in cities all around the world.

Every Tiger Translate showcases the best Angmoh + Asian collaboration – from graffitis, to paintings, to live installation, to interactive multimedia and all the different genres of music.

The fact that Tiger Translate is the melting pot of arts and culture is what makes it so fascinating. The fact that very few people get the opportunity to see what the underground artist community is doing is what makes me want to put it on my blog.

Wellington’s Tiger Translate themes are Double Vision / Metropolis.

Metropolis is not gonna be unfamiliar for comic artist Song Yang, who hails from the Chinese metropolis of Beijing. But for Orkhontuul B (or Oggy), he’s gonna be in for a wild ride.

Oggy from Mongolia is perhaps more used to painting on animal skins in the countryside. He is discovered when he won at Tiger Translate Ulaanbaatar earlier this year. Because of that, he is invited to collaborate his New Zealand counterparts and showcasing their work in Wellington.

But what happens when a Mongolian painter who painted stuff like this…

… collaborates with a New Zealand graffiti artist who created pieces like this?

And how will New Zealand – the backdrop of Peter Jackson’s Middle Earth – inspire these collaborating artists?

Most importantly, are they gonna be turning the sheeps of New Zealand from this…




… to this?

Let’s find out in a week’s time.

ADV: How Are You?

“I’m fine, thank you.”

No, seriously, how are you?

Those 3 words must be the most taken for granted in the English language – “how are you?”

How is your well-being? How are you feeling physically? Mentally?

When I started my fitness centre a year ago, my goal was simply to start up a business I can call my own. However, as time goes by, I began to realise that I have a much bigger mission on my hands.

Let’s face it. Kuching people in general, are living extremely unhealthy lifestyles.

I have seen some people who actually FEAR exercising. Even when their doctors advise them to start exercising and eating healthily to avoid health issues like high blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes – they don’t do anything about it.

I have seen people who telling me that work is so important to them that they can’t take just 3 hours off a week to exercise. I have seen people who tell me that just because they are slim, they don’t need to exercise – as if the only reason to exercise is to lose weight and nothing else.

Then there are those who claim they don’t have RM125 to spend on a gym membership, but are more than happy to spend RM300 on a bottle at the pub. And even when they know their health is at risk, they continue to eat unhealthy food, avoid exercising and drink alcohol like no tomorrow.

That is an extremely worrying trend, but it is an unfortunate fact.

Living healthily has never been fashionable in Kuching. In hindsight, I could probably make more money if I were to sell alcohol or cigarettes.

Even before I started Level Up Fitness, I knew it would be extremely difficult to make money out of it. It’s difficult to change human habits, even for me. Educating people about the importance of eating and living well is a constant uphill battle. Still, I want to contribute something positive towards the community I live in.

Having said that, how am I?

I know I am not perfect, because I completed the Nestle Wellness Profiler (took me only 3 minutes) and realised I am what they called a “Health Investor”.

I eat healthily as best as I can, but I just can’t let go off my weekend beer and habit of eating for social reasons.

Still, I firmly believe that everyone should exercise at least 30 minutes everyday, regardless of whether you are fat, thin, old, young, male, female. Exercising is the investment you put in so you’ll have less medical bills to pay when you get older.

Apart from that, eating right is also important. Tips on how to eat balanced meals can be found at nestle.com.my/dearnestle

And if anyone reading this is still clueless about how to make a healthy change in your life, there are events you can go to to kickstart this process.

World Walking Day is coming up this 21st November, and there are events planned throughout the country to educate Malaysians on how to eat and live healthily. The walk starts 8:30am and there will be free breakfast and concert between 6:30am to 11:30am at the following locations.

  • Kuala Lumpur: Taman Tasik Titiwangsa
  • Penang: Polo Ground, Jln Sepoy Line
  • Kuantan: Padang MPK 1
  • Johor: Taman Sri Stulang, JB
  • Sabah: Penampang Sports Complex Stadium
  • Sarawak: Waterfront, Kuching

So, how are you?

hitz.fm Kuching

Every morning I wake up, brush my teeth, hop into my car, tune into hitz.fm 95.3 “Playing you all the hits”.

Yeah, call me mainstream and what not, but I’ve been listening to them since 6 years ago. I’m a guy who keeps his fingers firmly on the pulse of mainstream pop culture so I listen to all the current hits, which includes everything from Flo Rida to Rihanna to Lady Gaga.

Admittedly, it doesn’t take a lot of make a Top 40 music these days. All you really need to know is how to stutter uncontrollably. For example,

“Umbrella-ella-ella-eh-eh-eh.” – Rihanna

“Po-po-po-po-poker face po-po-poker face.” – Lady Gaga

Then there’s “Alejandro, Alejandro. Ale-Alejandro Ale-Alejandro.” Lady Gaga

Whoever Alejandro is, somebody please tell him to stop call Lady Gaga’s name so much that she has to write a song about him.

I like listening to hitz.fm, although sometimes what they talk about are stuff happening in Kuala Lumpur.

Whenever they have concerts like Paramore or Adam Lambert, it’s in Kuala Lumpur. Whenever the hitz.fm Cruisers have freebies to giveaway, it’s in Kuala Lumpur.

Good thing is, whenever Priscilla Patrick talk about how horrible the traffic jam is, it’s also in Kuala Lumpur!

Pretty much the only time we ever hear about Kuching on hitz.fm is when there’s a traffic jam happening in Jalan Kuching.

In the end, those of us living in Kuching felt a little ripped off. We always felt KL folks are a little spoilt because there’s so much happening over there and not enough happening over this side of the South China Sea.

Hey, we are Malaysians too! We want those freebies and those concerts too! We wanna prank our friends and colleagues with Gotcha calls too! What about meeeeee?

Well, looks like our prayers are answered because all this is about to change.

On 25th October, Malaysia’s No.1 English radio station hitz.fm, along with sister stations MY FM and ERA fm have officially set up their bases in Kuching.

This is huge. For those of us living in Kuching, this is the best thing to have happened in Kuching since the invention of Sarawak laksa and Kolo mee!

In fact, this is the first time we have localised radio content run by a commercial national radio broadcaster.

For radio listeners, this means we can call into radio stations without dialling “03” in the front and win prizes that we can use without flying to KL. It means we can tune into My FM and listen to people talking in Mandarin instead of Cantonese – because God knows only how many people in Sarawak speaks Cantonese.

It means we can tune into our radios and hear about news and events happening in Kuching, instead of something happening on the other side of the country. Heck, it even means we can have legendary radio announcers Jakeman visiting Level Up Fitness in Kuching, and blog about it!

For local businesses like myself, it means we can finally advertise on local radio stations – the ones that people actually listens to – and not pay ridiculous advertising fees to advertise to people who aren’t even living in Sarawak. Heck, I have already booked my advertising slots on all three radio stations.

By setting up their base in Kuching, hitz.fm, MY FM and ERA fm is gonna revolutionise the radio landscape in Sarawak for the better.

hitz.fm even recruited two Kuching-based radio announcers and give them their own 3-hour timeslot from 10am – 1pm weekdays. The two are 25-year-old pint-sized former “Food Designer” Vix, and 29-year-old ex-Insurance-Analyst Herman.

Neither of them have any experience in radio announcing, but what incredible charisma they possess and what great future they have ahead of them. Soon, Vix and Herman will be joining luminaries like Jakeman.

Adam C



No, I have no idea why most of them have no hair either.

Judging by the looks of it, our local DJ Herman have a “bald” future ahead of him.

Anyone got any ideas on a radio ad for a fitness centre? Anything will do… as long as it’s not two woman speaking excitedly inside a supermarket please.