Saturday, October 31, 2009

2009年萬聖節, 鬼皇節 / Halloween Night in Canada 2009

In my younger days while living in northern Manitoba, I did dress up for Halloween and spent the night "terrorizing" the town folks!!! I remember some people in the mining town of 9000 would put their cars inside the garages for the night in case the neighbourhood Halloween parties got out of hand. Alas, Halloween was more about drinking and carousing than celebrating in a small town.

Here in Ottawa, the more-matured-me went to office Halloween parties. I remember dressing up once as a kung-fu master with a 未開鋒Chinese sword on my belt. People were quite impressed altho I did not win the price for the best out-fit. Instead, my colleague who dressed up as Agent Scully won the first price. I wish Fox Mulder had carried a Chinese sword while investigating the X-file.

Nowadays, I usually celebrate Halloween by putting a lit carved pumpkin outside the front door to welcome all the neighbourhood kids and provide them with individually sealed/wrapped goodies. And, I still enjoy seeing those little angels and goblins yelling "trick-or-treat" and then looking expectantly with their wide-eyes behind the masks and make-up. For that is what childhood should be like on Halloween night in Canada.

Related links to my other Halloween stories:

* (2008)「兩週一聚: 我有一部時光機」之【紅髪女孩 (續集) 】 / 【The Red Hair Girl (End Game) 】: Bi-weekly Potluck Series (submitted article under the theme " My Time Machine") http://lotusandcedar.blogspot.com/2008/10/red-hair-girl-end-game-bi-weekly.html
* (2007) 萬聖節的故事: 二零零七年 / Halloween Story: 2007 http://lotusandcedar.blogspot.com/2007/10/halloween-story-2007.html
* (2006) 萬聖節故事 / Halloween Story http://lotusandcedar.blogspot.com/2006/11/halloween-story.html

Photo credit: Wikipedia / Halloween

Thursday, October 29, 2009

兩週一聚 (二十五期) 「冬甩」之【無中生有論】 / 2weeks1gather (#25)「Doughnuts / Donuts / Donut Holes」【Theory of Without from Within】


第一次看到「冬甩」這個題目,真是有點氣餒,doughnuts /donuts 和我是有一段愛恨交集的關係,一方面我是饞嘴,最喜欢吃加拿大 Tim Hortons 店新鮮出爐酥化的 French Cruller 法國捲式「冬甩」,而另一方面,作為一個戶外運動愛好者,吃充滿糖份丶含高量「垃圾熱能」junk calories 的「冬甩」零食是有違 eat clean「清吃」 的健康原則。雖然我身子已不復18-22的身輕如燕丶步履如飛高峰狀態,但倔強的我,總希望夢想和現實的距離,是不会由盼望轉為絕望啊!!

可幸發明「冬甩」的加拿大人在十九世紀已明白「清吃」的原理,他們比愛因斯坦還要聰明,早已懂得 Blackhole Theory「黑洞理論」的曉妙,指出「冬甩」中的空間是有名無實的 Donut Hole。所以我用邏輯理論分析,屈指一算,如此類推,既然是空間,当然不会有「垃圾熱能」,那麼多吃不存在的東西,我想对体重磅數是沒有大影響罷!!

好了,我寫完這無中生有的理論之後,犯罪感全消,肚子也實在感到有點空洞,又是往 Tim Hortons 吃沒熱能丶減肥donut holes 的時候了。

攝影图片Photo Credit : Wikipedia 冬甩中間的doughnut holes

References:

* Donut holes: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donut_holes#Doughnut_Holes
* Donuts / Canada: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donuts#Canada
* Tim Hortons: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim_Hortons
* Crullers: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cruller

題外話:

1. According to mathematical logic, the "empty set" by definition contains nothing, with no elements inside. But the "empty set" exists and is not nothing. 空集不是無, 它是內部沒有元素的集合,而集合就是有。Thus, void, space and donut holes do not exist by itself but actually exist if you wrap something around it. If you don't believe me, check btwn your ears !!! (just kidding :) (Related link: Empty Set http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empty_set )

2. Just to be clear to my American readers, Canadians invented not just the doughnuts, but also the basketball and the telephone, beside the cold arctic fronts we send down south every winter !!! (Related Link: http://www.boston.com/lifestyle/food/articles/2008/04/12/canadas_holey_icon_our_eyes_glaze_over/ )

美食小品:

請探訪【兩週一聚】頭厨食坊,嘗試其它出爐「冬甩」: http://2weeks1gather.wordpress.com/2009/10/30/09%e5%b9%b410%e6%9c%8830%e6%97%a5%e7%ac%ac%e5%bb%bf%e4%ba%94%e6%9c%9f%ef%bc%9adonut-%e5%86%ac%e7%94%a9/

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
UPDATED 2009-11-03

"DONUT LIGHT" - written on a polar-cold night

Okay, I say it first: "DONUT LIGHT" !!! When I go to Tim Horton or other local donut shops, I always choose the more “plain” ones without the colour sprinkles on top and the creamy filling inside. So, why can't they produce doughnuts or donuts that have less sugar content and call it "Donut Light"? Tim Horton can even market this new product by depicting some hosers like Bob and Doug McKenzie squinting their eyes and looking at the Northern Lights through the donut hole !!! Imagine: Defending the sovereignty of Canada's Great White North while eating Tim Bits, drinking a Double-Double, and enjoying the polar lights (aurora borealis à la Tim Horton). I mean how more Canadian can you get, eh?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

微軟視窗作業系統XP的中文輸入法 ∕ Microsoft Windows XP's Input Method Editor IME for Chinese

在2008年10月3日,我收集了一些有關資料,登貼了一篇網誌【微軟視窗作業系統XP的繁体中文輸入法手寫字盤】 / Microsoft Windows XP's Input Method Editor IME Hand writing Pad for traditional Chinese (http://lotusandcedar.blogspot.com/2008/10/xp-microsoft-windows-xps-input-method.html)。今天我在 YouTube 上看到以下兩卷解釋得很好的video clips, 也和我一年前說的有關係,所以轉貼出來,在此供諸同好。

(如果您是用蘋果电腦 Apple MAC,請參閱Kempton的網誌 "Snow Leopard Chinese Input System Demo – using the lyrics of a song by Sandy Lam / 蘋果雪豹 - 中文輸入 林憶蓮 "願" http://kempton.wordpress.com/2009/10/28/snow-leopard-chinese-input-system-demo/)

1. 中文環境設定、漢拼和手寫輸入法




2. 漢字轉拼音、漢字轉注音




(Source: YouTube http://www.youtube.com/user/sativahuang 謝謝您!! )

UPDATE: 2011-03-11

正宗笔画输入法 (诺基亚笔画输入法电脑版) http://www.tt001.com/?source=g

Sunday, October 25, 2009

「兩周一聚」十月專題: 慶祝創立月/ 「2weeks1gather」Monthly Feature: October 2009 is Our First Anniversary

(一) 首先我要獻給各位一束美麗鮮艷的花朵,不同的顏色代表我們不同的背景丶思想丶和人生旅程,当我們兩週一聚的時候,那集合而來的色釆,實在令人感到喜悦!!
(二) 在五湖四海的夥伴中,您可能是獨自奔走江湖,身無旁物,嘗儘人生起落的英雄好漢丶巾幗女俠。
(三) 或是喜欢與众同樂,享受人生,有固定入息的社会階層人仕。
(四) 但在兩週一聚以文会友的師奶亭中,最重要的不是性別丶年歲丶入息丶名銜等,而是我們的文筆丶思考丶和創作力
(五) 在偶爾中我們萍水相逢,認識大家是一個榮幸,也是一個鼓舞!!
(六) 這令我感到我不是在汪洋大海中的一個孤島。

(七) 就讓我在這裏為大家慶祝「兩週一聚」的創立月罷!!!



Reference:
* 2weeks1gather: http://2weeks1gather.wordpress.com/

Saturday, October 24, 2009

「兩周一聚」之友: 第一屆國際茶會話題精髓 / Friends of 2weeks1gather: Highlights of the First International Tea-party

FRIENDS of 2WEEKS1GATHER
「兩周一聚」之友


HIGHLIGHTS OF THE FIRST INTERNATIONAL TEA-PARTY
第一屆國際茶會話題精髓

Present (in alphabetical order)
Haricot (Ottawa)
Horac (Vancouver)
Kempton (Calgary) – facilitator
Tsubasa (Seattle)

Introduction
The idea of a virtual get-together was first proposed by Kempton who took upon himself to arrange for the inauguration event on October 24, 2009. Four friends of 2week1gather were available for the on-line tea-party.

Highlights
All participants were connected promptly by Kempton using the Internet-based voice-Skype technology (the web-cam video option was deactivated).

Although there was no set agenda, the participants had no problems engaging in a 55-minute conversation in Cantonese that consisted of the following topics:

* A quick self-introduction: Personal info such as education etc was provided on a voluntary basis.

* Hobbies and interests: These include everything from Broadway shows; skiing; urban planning; to in-depth discussion of architectural designs in Hong Kong in references to masterpieces by Frank Gehry and Douglas Cardinal.

* Hong Kong: The participants touched on the blogging scene (age groups, language styles, and other characteristics); workplace culture (e.g. people throwing tantrums vs dealing with the issues at hand); and key values of a society (profits becoming both the means and the end, opportunities or lack thereof for talented people to innovate; brain drain; a place where we grew up; etc).

* Philosophy: Departing from HK, the participants brought the conversation back at the global level and started to discuss whether people's principles were non-negotiable, as opposed to behaviours. True to form, our philosopher friend responded to a "poke" from the facilitator and made his position. Alas, the discussion had to be cut short as some of us had to leave.

* Happy One-year Anniversary: The participants would like to raise their tea-cups and congratulate our readers, especially the organizers, on this special occasion of the one-year anniversary of 「兩周一聚」2weeks1gather.

"May you always, be a dreamer,
May your wildest dreams come fulfilled;
May old acquaintances be remembered;
And our cups of kindness filled !!! "


(Modified lyrics from the song "May You Always" )

Do you want to join us?
If you are interested to join us in our next "Friends of 2weeks1gather" virtual tea-party, please leave a comment in this blog entry to let us know. BTW, you must have written at least one 2weeks1gather article to join.

Prepared by:
Haricot with input from Horace, Kempton and Tsubasa - October 24, 2009


Related Links:
* 2weeks1gather:
http://2weeks1gather.wordpress.com/

References:
* Wikipedia:
Frank Gehry and Douglas Cardinal.
* YouTube: "May You Always" by the Lennon Sisters
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=opm1zuEHZUU
* YouTube: "May You Always" sung by the McGuire Sisters
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WPyyyaJSJjM



Sunday, October 18, 2009

李小薇訪問何喜華@ 薇微語/ Interview with a Hong Kong anti-poverty activist by RTHK 2009-10-13

Further to my previous blog article, here are two YouTube video clips I watched a few minutes ago. I do not know neither of the two ppl, but am impressed with their dedications. It seems there is no easy solution to solve the poverty problem in a society that has always been driven by money and materialistic goods.

李小薇訪問何喜華 @ 薇微語 RTHK 2009-10-13 (Part 1/2)



李小薇訪問何喜華 @ 薇微語 RTHK 2009-10-13 (Part 2/2)




(Disclaimer: The posting of the above materials does not constitute my endorsement of the information, statements, or positions contained in the videos)

香港政府二零零九至一零年施政報告:【策創新天】 / Government of Hong Kong "The 2009-10 Policy Address: Breaking New Ground Together"

Below are my comments posted at Fresh Designer's blog site regarding "The 2009-10 Policy Address: Breaking New Ground Together" published by the Government of Hong Kong.

OK, it took me abt 30 minutes to skim the English version of the Policy Address 2009-10 (while watching CSI on TV). So, the following comments are based on a less-than-cursory review of the above-mentioned document.

* I agree with you the focus on「燈泡事件」is "gotcha" politics and media sensationalism, something that really distracts the public away from in-depth debates on the substance and merit of the Policy Address.

* The idea of a knowledge-based economy is fine except it is perhaps 12-15 years late compared to the western economies. But again, if China's industries are still very much in the development stage, then it is better late than never for HK to take advantage of the late-start and try to beat the other more "matured" competitors.

* With respect to the six "new" target industries (in addition to the 4 existing pillar sectors), I do not get a good sense whether the development policy is demand- or supply-driven. I can only assume that the demands will come from Mainland (esp the southern regions) and HK is supplying the technologies and know-how. However, mainlanders will "buy" only if HK has a good branding strategy to go along with each target industry (apart from value for money). HK's film/cultural industry may have a good start because of known past successes. But I am not so sure abt the Environmental Industry and the Education Industry. I believe success for these two will be more regional than national, let alone international. The Testing and Certification Services is an interesting proposal. It is opportune to offer solutions to improve China's tainted reputations (pun intended). But, will this service be linked to ASME, ISO, and all the other internationally recognized standard associations/processes? And, how will HK help the Chinese producers with complying with WTO labelling rules and product safety regulatory regimes of other bilateral and multilateral organizations, as well as the foreign markets? More importantly, I would submit that the revitalization of the "Made-in-China" branding effort will not succeed solely based on the Testing and Certification Services of Hong Kong (to me as a consumer, it's still made-in-China and certified by China).

* The policy's focus on "Progressive Society" is good, esp the part on mental health, given the dense population, little personal space and stressed life-style of the HK society.

* Based on comments from bloggers and on-line media, it appears the govt still has a long way to go in gaining the public's trust and support. Since I do not live in HK, I am not up-to-date on the dynamics btwn the government and the governed. Perhaps, in addition to "National Education", the HK govt should start in its own backyard first with getting the ppl on side !!!

So much for now from the "peanut gallery".

References:

* Government of Hong Kong "The 2009-10 Policy Address: Breaking New Ground Together" http://www.policyaddress.gov.hk/09-10/eng/docs/policy.pdf

* 香港政府二零零九至一零年施政報告:【策創新天】 http://www.policyaddress.gov.hk/09-10/chi/index.html

* Fresh Designer's blog article: http://freshdesigner.blogspot.com/2009/10/blog-post_18.html

Friday, October 16, 2009

兩週一聚 (二十四期) 「香港二十」(下集) / 2weeks1gather (#24)「Twenty Things About Hong Kong」(Part 2/2)


(續上集 http://lotusandcedar.blogspot.com/2009/10/2weeks1gather-24twenty-things-about.html )

討厭十樣:

1. 在屋邨一左一右被黑社会人物「盤」:『你边「道」o架? 我個兄弟俾人打X到嘔血,係咪你做嘅? 阿乜,係咪佢呀?』阿乜邪眼望我這個沙包,手癢口痕心狠,嘴角掛個冷笑說:『好似係噃 ...。』無辜!!

2. 我們一班同學在紅磡「香港工專」(HKTC) 附近的蕪湖亍処遊逛,光天白日之下,兩個「爛仔」挾持了我們三人行中間的同學入橫巷打劫,幸好在前面一班識功夫的朋友聞声而至,兩匪見形勢不对,慌忙說:『認錯人咋!!』跟著放人散水。可惡!!

3. 每逢盂蘭佳節,那些迷信的阿婆阿嬸將食物撒放在路旁,但吃那些穢物的不是無主孤魂,而是那些在黑暗中爬行,帶病菌和染疫的蟑螂渠鼠。陋習!!

4. 我有禮貌地問:『隻介指几多錢呀?』售貨員用「白鴿眼」上下打量我: 『好貴o架!!』之後繼續同其她店員風花雪月「打牙較」。勢利!!

5. 中年男人:『喂細路女,想唔想嚟我度睇金魚呀!!』当年傳媒是這樣報導,但不知大魚食細魚的「金魚佬」有否被捕。變態!!

6. 男人在擠迫巴士以「硬物」從後壓來,趁机非禮,。色狼!!

7. 不尊守秩序,排隊「打尖」,有便宜必貪,損人利己,教養子女自私自利的父母。民風!!

8. 社会羣情兇湧,『打倒反動派!! 鬥跨鬥臭XXX !!! 』。混乱!!

9. 炎日当頭,汗流浃背,脾氣暴躁。回南!!

10. 『嚟個世界係咁o架喇。』氣結!!

Reference:

For more 2weeks1gather articles on "Hong Kong 20", please visit http://2weeks1gather.wordpress.com/

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

兩週一聚 (二十四期) 「香港二十」(上集) / 2weeks1gather (#24)「Twenty Things About Hong Kong」(Part 1/2)


這期的兩週一聚題目是由 Mad Dog 出,MD請參加網友: 『... 寫出十樣你最喜歡及十樣你最討厭香港的事物(任何事物, 包括人或事, 自由發揮) ...』。我屈指一算,上一次回港是97年之前,当時米字殖民地旗還在總督府門外飄揚,守衛警察軍隊是有「皇家」二字在前,管理那寸金尺土的不是「阿爺」,而是住在歐洲日不落之國的「老闆娘」。所以我在此不是寫時事感想,而是試試解開在腦海存放多年的「時間錦囊」,寫一些溫故而知新的懷念而已!!

喜欢十樣:

1. 記得当日回港在啟德机場落机的時候,老爸和老媽子倆老笑著臉冲上來,硬要幫我携取行李,欢迎我這個遊子「回歸」,他們開心的情景,至今仍甜在心頭。
2. 回到簾租屋邨故居,喜欢「微服出巡」,重溫童年時代,無憂無慮的欢樂時光。
3. 往小學和中學母校園地,從嬉玩小朋友的欢笑声中,尋找当年自己憧孔中的將來。
4. 回想年青的我,和Y在李宝龍臺街燈下初吻。
5. 吃在冰天雪地中找不到的游水海上鮮。
6. 買在中法語文中找不到的中國純文學。
7. 尋在歐美市場中找不到的陳年名古玉。
8. 往半山區廢炮堡壘,懷念在第二次世界大戰,為保衛香港而殉職的加拿大和本地軍人。
9. 在大嶼山与年青兵士作無声賽跑,由山腳沿險要山徑直上鳳凰嶺尖頂,贏了他多個馬位,哈哈!!! (At the summit, we made friends and I found out he was from the UK 好一位嶺頂英兵)。
10. 在馬鞍山單人匹馬,找路上山,沿途撥草尋蛇,沾花惹草,与雀鳥粉蝶為伍,夢想在城市森林中發現新大陸。

(請看下期「討厭十樣」 / Please see my next article on 10 bad things I don't like abt Hong Kong)

Photo Credit 攝影图片: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/cd/HK_King_s_College_2.jpg

Reference: For more articles on "Hong Kong 20", please visit http://2weeks1gather.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

「雨後彩虹 」相片回应 / A Photo Response to "Rainbow after a Storm"

我這幅在北非拍的攝影圖片
是回应住在德意志黑森林小鎮
Stupidhollywolly 和 Phil 兩口子的網誌「雨後彩虹」:
"...... 世界仍充滿希望,明天一定會更好,你看彩虹便知道了 ......"
在這橫跨天際的七色奇景之下
願我們共勉之!!!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

渥太華的「火紅秋葉」半馬拉松賽跑 / Ottawa Fall Colours Half-marathon Oct 11, 2009

Race is going to start in an hour and a half. The temp is a cool 4 deg outside and the sun might even come out from behind those clouds!!! I am wearing a long sleeve polypropylene shirt and a pair of short pants. That should keep me warm and dry. I forgot to replenish my supply of energy gel since the Army Race half-marathon in September. Hopefully, the three remaining packs plus the Gatorade/water from stations along the way will prevent me from "hitting the wall".
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Updated 20091013 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

貼堂佳作【哈利哥跑馬拉松】
(哈哈! 多謝Space兄送來的打油丶加油詩!!)

哈利哥跑馬拉松
開步之時人頭擁
有老有少齊跑步
上高落低無亂籠

哈利哥跑馬拉松
沿途秋葉輕風送
訓練有素腳頭勁
不徐不疾好輕鬆

哈利哥跑馬拉松
良朋知己喜相逢
祇重參與唔包尾
談笑用兵不論功

哈利哥跑馬拉松
嗜悲賦詩來歌頌
左度右度好過癮
夠鐘寫完又開工

Saturday, October 10, 2009

樟腦 / Camphor

According to Wikipedia, camphor 樟腦 is quite toxic.

* http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camphor
* http://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E6%A8%9F%E8%85%A6

On the right hand side of the above-mentioned article, you will notice a "NFPA 704" diamond with four colours (blue, red, yellow, white). The blue contains the health hazard code "2". Zero is not harmful and 4 most harmful. Camphor has the same rating as chloroform 哥羅芳 and is just below chlorine, a killing gas that is rated 3.

As a general rule, when using any types of natural or man-made chemicals, it is always a good idea to do some research to learn abt its toxicity and decide on the risks vs benefits.

BTW, hydrogen cyanide has a health hazard rating of 4 under the "NFPA 704" system (i.e. almost instant death). I remember wearing face-mask and full cover-all when I was working in a gold mine that used HCN to extract the precious metal. There were warning signs all over the place: DO NOT EAT or DRINK IN THIS AREA.

Note: The above was quoted from my comments posted at Fresh Designer's blog article 衣櫃的一角

Friday, October 09, 2009

Cory Weeds 的爵士音樂五部合奏隊 / Cory Weeds' Jazz Quintet

I have finally made the connection to "The Cellar" jazz scene in Vancouver by meeting founder Cory Weeds who was performing with his Quintet at the National Arts Centre on Oct 5, 2009. I had always wished I were in Vancouver listening to jazz at the club with my friends from the 2009 Cuba Jazz Festival tour group. So what a surprise it was when I found out Cory Weeds would be coming to Ottawa !!! Here was the line-up of the night's performance:

Cory Weeds – tenor saxophone
Ross Taggart – piano
Jim Rotondi – trumpet
Paul Rushka– bass
Jesse Cahill – drums

Well, I must say I thoroughly enjoyed the two-hour show by the Quintet. I even had Cory's autograph on his 51st Cellar Live disc "Everything's Coming Up Weeds". They did some really exciting pieces, such as "I've Never Been In Love Before". I had to laugh when Cory talked abt the reality of fatherhood, in reference to the beautiful ballad "Little Unknown One" that he had written BC (before children). Yes, night after night of sleep-deprivation, that explains a lot abt parents' memory, or the lack thereof.

If you interested in finding out more abt the Cory Weeds Quintet, please go to:

http://www.coryweeds.com/live/
http://www.coryweeds.ca/
http://www.cellarjazz.com/

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

【震波的一公升眼淚】 / "Blogger Vibratingball's 1 Litre of Tears"


I listened with sadness earlier today the radio interview "訪問震波的一公升眼淚" recorded by Issac Lam and his co-host Doris back in November/December 2006. My tears dropped when I heard this part of his story:

"... (my rough translation into English) Two weeks ago, I was there when my daughter woke up. I asked whether she had known I would be moving out. She said Mom had already told her about the divorce. "But, I will not miss you Dad, because we would still be seeing each other 我地第日重見面家嘛." I was happy to hear her said that. Then she added: "Besides, I would come visit you when I am older. 大過D我可以自己出嚟搵你都得家嘛." So, I figure my departure will not affect her psyche and will not hurt her, as opposed to leaving her later. It's time to leave ..."

Blogger 震波 committed suicide and passed away on September 13, 2009 in Hong Kong.

May you find peace in the Great Beyond.

References:

"訪問震波的一公升眼淚" radio interview 5-part series:

* (一) 
http://venus.mocasting.com/p/89383

* (二) 
http://venus.mocasting.com/p/90739

* (三) 
http://venus.mocasting.com/p/92062

* (四) 
http://venus.mocasting.com/p/93309

* (後篇) 
http://venus.mocasting.com/p/94591

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

鮑照【朗月行】的英文翻譯 / An English translation of the "Moon Shine Song" by Bao Zhao 414-466

《朗月行》 鮑照

朗 月 出 東 山
照 我 綺 窗 前
窗 中 多 佳 人
被 服 妖 且 妍
靚 妝 坐 帷 裏
當 戶 弄 清 弦
鬢 奮 衞 女 迅
體 絕 飛 燕 先
為 君 歌 一 曲
當 作 朗 月 篇
酒 至 顏 自 解
聲 和 心 亦 宣
千 金 何 足 重
所 存 意 氣 間


"Moon Shine Song" by Bao Zhao (translated by Haricot)


The bright moon rises from the east mountain
Caressing me by the window in her milky fountain

Behind the window I see many beauties
Hidden in bright quilt and clothes oh so flimsy

Some sit with pretty make-up behind drapes and curtains
Others at the door strike their chords clear and certain

Think of Mme Wei's hairs flying,
..... bemoaning the fall of a dynasty
Think of Empress Feiyan's body dancing,
.... perishing from loss of gravity

May we dedicate this song to you My lord
May we call it "Moon Shine" in our thoughts

Let the wine flow to bring forth our happy faces
Let's sing in harmony to untie our hearts' laces

A thousand taels of gold is not worth its weight
When it's life's essence that needs to be saved


說文解字 / Explanations :

1. With respect to the line "鬢奮衞女迅":

* "衛女": I assume Bao Zhao was not talking abt the brid-woman in the ancient Chinese legend【精衞填海】 which according to 《山海經.北山經卷三》: ... 炎帝之女名曰女娃。女娃游于東海,溺而不返,故為精衞,常銜西山之木石,以堙於東海。
* Instead, I assume he was referring to a woman character closer to his era, also being referred to as 衛女 (Madame Wei) in the Chinese classic【後漢書 卷二十八上‧ 列傳第十八上】.
* Now the verbal translation could have been: "With her side-burn flying, Mme Wei was quick" but I took the liberty of adding the historical context.

2. With respect to the line "體絕飛燕先":

* Just like the previous line, it's hard for me in 2009 trying to guess what Bao Zhao meant to say more than 1,500 years ago. I assume he was talking abt the slender body of Empress Zhao Feiyan趙飛燕 as in the idiom "燕瘦環肥".
* Now, the verbal translation could have been: "Of all the slender bodies, Feiyan's came first" but again I took the liberty of adding in the historical context (the Empress committed suicide after she had lost power and had been demoted to become a commoner).

3. With respect to the line "所存意氣間":

* I find the concluding line the most difficult to interpret. Was the authour talking abt the essence of songs and dance, or the essence of living? I chose the latter because of my decision to add the historical context in 1 and 2 above.

References:

* 【月】: 網友 Space 兄 http://mindnecessity.blogspot.com/2009/10/414466424453-hinet.html


* "鮑照" 維基百科Wikipedia:
"... 鮑照(414年-466年),字明遠,人稱鮑參軍,東海(今江蘇漣水縣北)人,中國南北朝詩人。宋元嘉(424年—453年)中,劉義慶以他為國侍郎。其後成為太學博士、中書舍人。臨海王劉子頊鎮荊州時,由於任前軍參軍,世稱鮑參軍。劉子頊作亂,為亂兵所殺。上集六朝精華,下啟唐八風氣的文學家是鮑照。
鮑照的詩主要學習張協和張華,善於摹寫形狀。宋顏延之問己與謝靈運優劣於鮑照,照曰:「謝五言如初發芙蓉,自然可愛;君詩鋪錦列繡,亦雕繢滿眼。」胡應麟《詩藪》稱其「上挽曹、劉之逸步,下開李、杜之先鞭」著有《鮑參軍集》。與謝靈運、顏延之並稱「元嘉三大家」。鮑照有個妹妹叫鮑令暉,是著名女詩人。.."
(Source: http://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E9%AE%91%E7%85%A7 )

* "Bao Zhao 鮑照" 香港中文大學Renditions Magazine 譯樷:
"... Bao Zhao (Pao Chao) 414?-466
The most important yuefu poet in the Southern Dynasties (420-589). A native of Donghai, Bao served as an Attendant Gentleman to Liu Yiqing, the Prince of Linchuan and the author of Shishuo xinyu [A New Account of Tales of the World]. He was an Adjutant in the army of Liu Zixu, Prince of Linhai, when a revolt broke out and he was killed in the upheaval. His works were well-received by and quite influential to Tang poets. In addition to yuefu, Bao also excelled in fu and prose, among which 'Wucheng Fu' [The Ruined City] is the most famous. His extant works include some three dozen essays and over 200 poems collected in Bao Canjun ji [Collection of Attendant Bao]...."
(Source: http://www.renditions.org/renditions/authors/baozhao.html )

* 【衞女 / 後漢書 卷二十八上‧ 列傳第十八上】: "..... 宗正臨境,莫之能援。兵威屈辱,國權日損,三王背畔,赤眉害主,未見兼行倍道之赴,若墨翟累繭救宋,申包胥重胝存楚,衞女馳歸唁兄之志。衞女,衞宣公庶子頑之女,為許穆公夫人,其兄即戴公。弔失國曰唁。衞懿公為狄所滅,戴公乃立廬于曹邑。許穆夫人閔衞亡,思歸唁之,不得,乃賦載馳之詩。事見左傳。主亡一歲,莫知定所,虛冀妄言,苟肆鄙塞。未能事生,安能事死?未知為臣,焉知為主?豈厭為臣子,思為君父乎!欲搖太山而蕩北海,言不可也。孟子曰「挾太山而超北海」也。事敗身危,要思邑言。....."
(Source: http://www.sidneyluo.net/a/a03/028a.htm )

* 【趙飛燕】: "... 趙飛燕(前32年-前1年),原名宜主,是西漢漢成帝的皇后和漢哀帝時的皇太后。趙飛燕是一位在中國歷史上傳奇的人物。在《漢書》中對她的描述僅僅只有少數幾句,但關於她的野史卻有許多。在中國民間和歷史上,她以美貌著稱,所謂「環肥燕瘦」講的便是她和楊玉環,而燕瘦也通常用以比喻體態輕盈瘦弱的美女。... 趙飛燕出生卑賤,... 在陽阿公主那兒,被訓練為一個歌舞妓。... 像飛燕一樣靈巧,每每舞動時有翩然欲飛之勢,故改名「飛燕」。此後,人皆以「飛燕」稱之。..... 漢平帝登基,趙飛燕喪失了依靠,先由「皇太后」貶為孝成皇后,後來不久又被廢為庶人,最後還被派到成帝墳前守陵,趙飛燕難忍羞辱終以自殺收場。..."
(Source: Wikipedia http://zh.wikipedia.org/zh-hk/%E8%B5%B5%E9%A3%9E%E7%87%95 )

Monday, October 05, 2009

港女大鬧連鎖店: 「狗尾續貂」数字謎 / HK Woman's Incident at a Chain-store: Made-up Story of the Missing $20

話說某小姐慘經人肉搜索一役,再不敢帶手机入商場,但仍需要買面盤,於是帶了兩位朋友倍同作伴及見証,往另一間連鎖店再次購物。

小姐: 請問個面盤几多錢?
店員: 原價每個480大元。
朋友: 如果我地每人買一個,一共三個,可以平D啦?
店員: 實價無得減呀!!
小姐: 唉!雖然價錢比上次貴D,但牌子質素有分別,原價都算啦,我地就買三個。
店員: 3乘480,多謝1440大元。

(於是3人每人掏480元交給店員,他拿著1440大元入內交給老板及包貨)

老板: 出边個位小姐好面善,好似係YouTube見過,你收佢几多錢?
店員: 3乘480,一共收1440大元。
老板: 唉!無謂多事,我收順D,就計少40蚊算啦!

(店員將3個面盤及40元交給小姐)

小姐: 咦?點解有40蚊?
店員: 老板話收順D。

(小姐大喜,給店員10元貼士,給自己10元,及兩個朋友每人10元。但是出了連鎖店,朋友屈指一算,立刻面色不悅。)

朋友: D數字又有問題!!
小姐: 點解呀?
朋友: 我地每人買咗470蚊貨, 3乘470等於1410蚊,店員收咗10蚊貼士,一共1420蚊,但係原價係1440元,咁個20蚊去咗边!!!

喊呀,大事不好!!各位網友,請您們趕快幫忙,解釋這20元的差別!!

(以上全是搞笑数字謎,「狗尾續貂」故事,請不要太認真!!)

Reference:
* 反”反趙燕萍” 5pointsorless
http://5pointsorless.wordpress.com/2009/09/25/%e5%8f%8d%e5%8f%8d%e8%b6%99%e7%87%95%e5%b9%b3/

Sunday, October 04, 2009

三星期內跑兩個「半馬拉松」賽 / Running two Half-marathons in 3 Weeks

I have committed to running a second half-marathon within abt 21 days. The last one was the Canada Army Run on September 20. I usually run two full-marathons each year, one in May and another in October. But due to lack of training this summer, I figure I better play it safe this fall by running just a "half".

Well, I can always make it up with the Ottawa Winterman marathon in February 2010. However, one has to really keep warm running for many hours in possibly -20 deg C and windy, snowstorm conditions. I speak from personal experience, as a winter runner and previous ice-climber !!!

Freezing could be blissfully slow and uneventful (I guess that's how climbers die up on Mount Everest, hallucinating and losing consciousness after severe hypothermia), but defrosting is sudden and painful (the coming back to life/feeling part) !!!

Saturday, October 03, 2009

愛の鳥 / Love Bird




Love is like a little birdie



Hold it too tight and you will kill it



Hold it too loose and it will fly away !!!

Friday, October 02, 2009

望秋葉懷父有感 / The Autumn Leaves (and my Dad)

For many years, when the leaves turned red around this time of the season, my father would come and help rake all the fallen leaves in the backyard into nice little piles, then tirelessly put them into paper bags for pick-up by the city's yard-waste truck. I miss you Dad !!!


初秋楓樹紅燦燦
屋前屋後落葉飄
当年老父忙打掃
今朝耙子靜悄悄

孤葉扶枝難自去
南柯夢醒莫感懷
中秋月圓逢佳節
遊子影獨心無為

松鼠繞道抬頭看
秋收冬藏為子忙
明年今日黃土葬
但望家園孫滿堂

北國晚風寒朔朔
落葉無根歲月疏
回頭仰望紅楓樹
松兒松嫂暖窩窩

Thursday, October 01, 2009

2009年中華人民共和國國慶 / PRC's National Day 2009

I watched China's celebration of its 60th National Day on the CBC National News this evening right after the report on the possible extradition of Polanski back to the US, which leads me to believe there is no immediate plan for our PM to visit China. The most striking scene, of course, was the parade of China's military might. The internal message of the Chinese government to its people seems to be quite clear: "We are strong and powerful!!" But what is the intended external message to the rest of the world watching? In my opinion, the flexing of military muscle will no doubt give ammunition to those who want to portray China as a threat. Since the Beijing Olmpic, I have read enough on the net abt "communist China's plan to take over the world".

As expected, this military show by China appears to have reinforced this fear in the minds of some Americans. Throughout the evening, the US media spent quite a bit of time reporting and analyzing China's miliatary capacity (not that the Pentagon doesn't have the info already). CNN even had an "expert" going over the paraded arsenal hardware one-by-one and concluded seriously that China's anti-ship missiles pose a serious threat to US carriers patrolling the Pacific Ocean.

Given that China's economy still depends very much on its export to the US and other foreign markets, I am not so sure if flexing its military muscle is the best way to beat other BRIC competitors in the global trade. But again, the population in China seems to like the show and perhaps that is what counts most for a country celebrating its national day.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Updated 20091003 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

貼堂佳作

(感謝網友Space兄千里來鴻)

故國慶壽熱烘烘
花甲六十賀昌隆
遊子隔岸懷故國
甲子未圓民主夢

科技是否必需之魔法道具? / Is Science and Technology a Necessary Evil?

Hevangel 在「哲子戲」網誌說: 『 ... 任何超越時代的先進科技與魔法沒有分別 ... 其實我們已經生活在一個魔法世界﹐這個世界的魔法系統是牛頓三大定律﹐愛因斯坦的相對論﹐科學家是魔法師﹐而我們習以為常的高科技產品便是魔法道具。 ... 』

我留言曰: 『... 佩服天師指點, 魔法超能並非同出一轍之理論無懈可擊!!! ... So, should we continue to develop and apply nanotechnology (e.g. injecting nano device into our blood-stream), biotechnology (e.g. genetically modified salmon and other foods that are being introduced into the ecosystem), genetic engineering (e.g. “super” race or gender selection), etc ... 』

以下是我再加的少少愚見:

還記得美國來福槍協会NRA反对禁械的道理是: 槍械不殺人,是人殺人,所以無需要立令禁止擁有槍械 (this is apart from the First Amendment's right to bear arm)。沒錯,炸藥創製者諾貝爾和核子能發現人愛因斯坦都只是科學家,實不能怨咎他們導至人類戰爭死亡,但是借用NRA的邏輯,如此類推,豈不是所有海洛英丶鴉片丶Weapons of Mass Destruction等都不用立令控制禁止,因為這些產品是intrinsically / inherently neutral,物質本身沒有利弊正誤,好与壞是在乎应用者的出發點,和啟用之後有意或無意發生的後果和嚴重情度。換句話說,科技是道具,致於是善方還是魔法,那就完全在乎我們怎樣客覌定斷「利」benefits 与「險」risks 之間的平衡了。

Reference:
* 哲子戲」網誌說 "兩週一聚﹕假如我有魔法或超能力/ " http://www.horace.org/blog/2009/09/30/

Please also click here to read my previous blog article on this subject:
* 兩週一聚 (二十三期) 「假如我有魔法或超能力....」 / 2weeks1gather (#23)「If I have magic or super power....」http://lotusandcedar.blogspot.com/2009/09/2weeks1gather-23if-i-have-magic-or.html
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