Thursday, November 30, 2006

Woohoo! Most bloggers are women

Woohoo!….most bloggers are women says the Star newspaper. Well, I added in the “Woohoo” part in. Studies like these go a long way in explaining the blogging world. Besides that, some 74% of bloggers are under the age of 25.

The report also mentioned that politicians’ blogs were somewhat more interesting in Malaysia compared to other asian countries. What makes our politicians so blogolicious? Never mind, I won’t answer that question. I’ll be the first to admit “politely” that we’ve got some …….colorful politicians in Malaysia.

Back to the main point….Woohoo! most bloggers are women. And most of them are of younger age! Not your grandmas and aunties! Ah….but I have to admit if the majority of bloggers were men, I don’t think I’d read their blogs too much. The only exception being that their blogs are really entertaining or if they were really close friends.

Okies…so check out hottest blogger. Go there and get your thrills =D

Thursday, November 23, 2006

South African Prison Break!

Just a few days ago, an inmate by the name of Ananias Mathe broke out of the maximum security prison, “C-Max.” Apparently, he greased himself up with petroleum jelly and slid between the bars and out the window.

He then tied some clothes and bed sheets to serve as a rope and climbed down the prison wall.

A year ago, I probably would have never cared. One guy breaks out in South Africa, so what? I’m in Malaysia. Big … When I read it, I got intrigued into how he did it. Why? You might have guessed, I faithfully watch prison break. It’s freaking addictive.

People have different opinions on shows they like, but for me prison break takes the cake. Well, to be honest, I initially thought I wouldn’t enjoy watching a show with a bunch of prison inmates trying to get out. Seriously, does that sound really entertaining? Furthermore, no hot girls, except for one and she only appears for a few episodes.

Despite first initial thoughts, the show turned out great. From the intriguing storyline to the colorful characters, I liked almost everything about Prison Break.

I love a good TV series as much as anyone. It’s fantastic producers and tv networks bring shows like these to the public because between watching TV and meeting friends, there isn’t much to do in Penang. Thank goodness for TV shows….

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Does Kevin really lose out for divorcing Britney?

Sometimes things pay off and sometimes they don’t. Unless you’ve been living under a rock lately, I think it’s fair to say the divorcing of Britney spears and Kevin Federline is common knowledge.

Kevin seemingly didn’t do a lot to help the marriage. The press reported Kevin partying with strippers and drug usage. Now why the heck would this guy want to put himself in a position to divorce Britney Spears? The wife is pretty hot, she’s rich, and she’s a superstar. Besides that, it seemed pretty clear she was into him. She took a break in her career to have kids with him.

Most guys want girls like her.

Ah, but it’s easy to talk from the outside looking in. How about from the inside looking out? When the wife is the main breadwinner in the family, the husband might feel like he’s under a lot of pressure. That would explain a lot of the divorces out there. For example, take the case of Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey or Ryan Phillipe and Reese Witherspoon. Between Kevin and Britney, Britney is the ONLY breadwinner. So, imagine the pressure.

Rationalizing aside, Britney divorced Kevin, and because of the prenuptial agreement Kevin signed, he doesn’t get much of her money in a divorce. Kudos to Britney, she was smart enough to realize things may go downhill and she had much to lose if they did. But apparently when you are famous, prenups only go so far.

Any moron divorcing Britney Spears will walk away with a huge sum of money in some form or another regardless of a prenuptial agreement. If the guy is too stupid to figure out how, surely someone smarter will advise him. All he has to do is ask this question to any person willing to help him: “I just signed a prenuptial agreement. In case of a divorce, how do I get paid???”

So obviously Kevin thought about or at least asked this question. He’s already gotten at least 2 million USD from the MTV series on his marriage to Britney Spears.

Currently I know he revealed two more ways to get paid: custody of the kids and a sex tape of him and Britney. Who knows how many more he’ll reveal?

You can’t lose when marrying Britney Spears.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

The Covenant?

Let me start by saying you might not want to read this if you haven’t watched the covenant. Don’t worry though, I won’t be giving away any spoilers.

Recently I watched The Covenant, a movie about these kids with super powers. It’s a somewhat fun show. Though the movie most likely won’t win any awards, for RM9, at least I thought it was entertaining.

While watching, I had this strange flashback to my younger days of watching Dragon Ball Z. I used to lurve Dragon Ball Z with the powerful characters and the unpredictable storyline. Then it got somewhat boring somewhere at the 200th or so episode. What show doesn't? It has something like 300+ episodes !! While the Covenant doesn’t have any of the actors with glowing blonde hair, the eyes do change colors and some of the stunts and powers are rather Dragon Ball Z-like.

For me, if the story is mediocre, the action better entertain me for the hour and a half (I know my standards are pretty poor). Thank goodness the movie did that right. Some movies are really horrible at both action and story such as Stormbreaker.

I don’t think I’ll ever take a UK-produced movie seriously again. Stormbreaker had an eye-catching preview, which is why I watched it. It has got to be the most horrible show I've ever seen. The only other UK based movie I’ve seen in the cinemas is DOA. At least that had some pretty fly girls.

I especially liked her. ^^

The action in DOA was a little better than Stormbreaker. In the story department, DOA struck out. No offense to UK citizens or fans, but UK produced movies are out of luck with me in the future.

So back to The Covenant, the movie has something for everyone. It has action for the guys. Also, girls will probably like the male actors in the movie. Unfortunately, there are only few girls in the movie for the guys to see. Overall though, I kinda liked it. I'm easy to please.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Ever thought about buying a medical insurance investment plan?

A few years ago, I considered buying insurance to cover any medical procedures should anything happen. I do believe basic medical insurance is necessary should anything go wrong. For example if I didn’t have insurance, should I require some minor surgery and hospitalization; a huge chunk of my savings would be gone. Why? I would have requested the best of everything.

The best hospitals…..

The best doctors……….

The best nurses……….

Need I say again that I want the best! I’m going under the knife here. Especially the best nurses…..

With insurance, the hospital cost is minimal, perhaps even nothing at all. This is how I justify the yearly insurance premiums.

So recently I realized that I wanted to buy insurance as I’m on my own now. Thus I contacted my local insurance agent, my mum’s friend. Well actually she contacted me. It’s amazing how quickly top insurance agents can track a potential new customer.

She worked out a “ insurance/investment plan” for me. Note that this is different from buying insurance and renewing it yearly. To sum it up, starting at age of 26,I would be paying RM1950 per year for about 20 years. After that 20 years, I wouldn’t need to pay any more (in theory) and I would be insured until 70. The total cost would be RM39000 over my lifetime. I also enquired about the normal type of insurance which would be close to around RM80000. The coverage would start from age 26 until age 70 and the features were almost exactly the same. Hmm…well, I feel any “plan” warrants a bit of investigation. Should I pay for the plan or the normal insurance? Heck, this is a big amount.

On the surface, it seems like the plan was the best way to go since it seemed half the price of the normal insurance. But to check I ran some computations in excel with the GH350 health one premium rates at the Pan Global Insurance. First I added the total premiums I would be paying until I was 70. Second I calculated how much I would earn after saving RM1950 per year for 20 years with an interest rate of 3% (hypothetical rate. FD is 4% right now) until the age of 70. Finally, I compared the total premiums (RM79000) versus the amount of money I would have in FD (RM117,000).

As you can see, subtract RM79,000 from RM117,000 and RM38,000 is what you get left in the account allocated for insurance. Seems like not a bad return doing things yourself, but wait. Now, using the previous as a model, let's look at a more thorough analysis. I only save the balance left after paying premiums (RM1950-premium costs) yearly and varied the interest rate between 2% and 4.5%. There is a large discrepancy. At 2%, I would be under funded by RM29000 and at 4.5% I’d be over funded by RM12000 by the age of 70. When I say underfunded, it means that I've got to top up the account. For over funded, it means I've got an extra amount in there. Let me point out, although this is a better analysis than the original model; there is only so much one can do. In real life, a lot of things can happen differently.

The one thing I don’t like about these “investment/insurance plans”, is that the insurance companies have a way out. Say a policy is under funded. Then I’ve got to pay the insurance company to make up the difference or I’m off the plan. Also by the time I hit age 70, a big chunk of the extra money will be used to pay other “fees” such as administration, commissions, etc.

On the other hand, paid professionals do manage the insurance and take care of all the hassle. And most probably will do a good job – keeping my fingers crossed. Putting money in others’ hands always involves a certain degree of risk as you trust this person not to screw it up.

One more thing to mention, paying normal medical insurance versus the “investment/insurance” plans seem a lot more expensive, but over time and depending on the annual return rate it’s different. For my "investment/insurance" plan, a poor rate of 2% will under fund my insurance policy by RM29,000, while an excellent return rate of 8% will still under fund my policy RM9449. To reiterate, using my detailed model (basically a do it yourself plan), at 2% I get a RM29000 underfunding, but at 4.5%, I over fund my policy by RM12000. Using this comparison, the do it yourself method and buy the normal yearly insurance sounds a lot better than going for the "investment/insurance" plan. Of course this is theory, and doing the money management is harder than it looks.

Looking at how insurance is such an expensive purchase; I hope someone finds my post useful. In ending, I’ve got to put a disclaimer. These are my own findings and others might have different conclusions. Use this information at your own risk. If there are any questions, email me at or feel free to post comments on this article.