Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Happy Merdeka
Happy Malaysia Day

The other day, I went to my local post office and got my name registered as a voter for the next general election :) Yes, shame on me. I think the elections are pretty soon. Could be as early as next year. Early March they say. The signs are everywhere. The sudden generosity from the PM across all board. Times like this is when you hope its election season all the time, because the rakyat gets lots of goodies – from salary increments, bonuses, senior citizens discounts, tax subsidize & exemptions, better service delivery, the roads are being tarred and…well, in some places, the local governments do crazy things like changing road signs.

Moving forward, in order to ensure that there is check & balance in the Federal & State government administration, I think it will be good for the BN to win back the states that they have lost back in 2008; namely Kedah, Perak, Penang & Selangor…and for the Opposition to win big in Johor, Pahang, Sarawak & Sabah :) There; both the BN & the Pakatan cannot do any more hanky-panky stuffs, but instead to fully concentrate on the real objectives which are nation building and economic construction.

There’s more to life than increasing its speed

Tomorrow is the 1st of September – by right, if everything have proceed smoothly, tomorrow will be my first day reporting to the English. Yes, a little bit of regret there :) a little bit of doubtfulness. Both emotions still lingering around, on a on-off basis :) The pay & the benefits are good, I know that I will have a much more better career prospects over there, I will only be doing & focusing on D33 (not like now, where I have to do both D33 & D34) and I will be learning & working with some of the best players in the industry; Rodrigo, Atticus, Juan Valentine, Danny & Miguel. Speaking of friends…Juan is already there, so is Haakon, Nikolai, Wyatt, Pierre Andre, Boss and Tommy. Tommy re-joined them several months back. It’s like my comfort zone is already in place. It's like I'm giving it all away all of the good stuffs that could happen to me.

I wanted to leave the French because I wanted a new beginning. I wanted a good change. The opportunity to start all over again was there. There were certain things which needed to be change, and I found those changes to be near impossible here. It is a fact & reality that I will have to shoulder on the 2 departments for the time being and with the conditions of both of the divisions...the KPI will be the hardest to acheive & crack into. Of course, choosing to leave the place you have labored all your life wasn’t an easy and quick decision to make. There wouldn’t be a decision if it wasn’t for the opportunity. Nonetheless, my decisions have been made. In the past few months, I’ve walked one of the longest, hardest journeys of my life. The future remains unknown and uncertain. However, I have always believe that the darkness doesn’t stay forever…sunshine will come again.

But I am very curious, if I do work alongside Atticus & Rodrigo – what will happen? I can see that their Leisure Sports area have shrunk because they have given the additional space to Danny to expand the Toys Department. If I go there, will I be able to secure the place back by justifying that I need to expand the Big Fitness category or do I need to fight it out with Danny :) Or, maybe they don’t even give the space to Danny after all.
Only time will tell…and I will continue my journey, finding myself, to live, be happy, experience discoveries, making memories.

"The past is like a rear view mirror, smaller than a windshield because the future is far bigger than what’s behind us” - UnKnown

Monday, August 30, 2010

you make me writhe with jealousy

The news of the launching of the new Toys Department by the English was all over the place. It was a huge & strong publicity event - it was featured in the English’s latest Hari Raya Catalogue, it was advertised in all of the major newspapers over the weekend, it was kind of–in-your-face-hard-selling-promotion. Danny is shouting to the world that he has arrived and he is here to show you on how to actually run the Toys Department properly. One word: Impressive. The open space layout arrangement was marvelous; all of the retail space that was available was fully utilized to the max, the set-up gives the customers (especially the children) a very modern, educational & fun feel. The assortments were perfect – there is the Flat Price Section, Boys Toys Section (HotWheels, Transformers, Ben 10, Nerf, Bakugan, Ultraman, Flash & Dash, Power Rangers etc), Girls Toys Section (Barbie, My Little Pony & Friends etc), their HouseBrand Toys Section, Family Toys Section (Monopoly, Toy Story 3 etc) and Outdoor Toys. The ID counter was a good idea as well, for the supplier's to highlight their individual domestic & international branding plus it helps to generate additional income. I can see that Danny have done a lot of market & consumer research to conceptualize this new business module that caters to every consumer segment. Danny is very into analyzing what he sees and hears. He notices and remembers every little details. He is very articulate, eloquent and his sentences & expressions are mind blowing. That is why Danny is the best candidate to run the toys business. I finally understand why all of the suppliers & his superiors have always been so supportive of his work. With this new development – I foresee that it will affect our business tremendously. I think that the next category that the English is going to revamp, rebrand & repackage will be Leisure Sports. I will be their next hitting target. I am praying very hard that Rodrigo will not appoint Danny to be in charge of the project :) Otherwise, I am screwed.

On another perspective, the question is; if Danny can do it…..why can’t I? I'm ready! :) I may need to set new goals and revisit on-going ones. Myself...and the categories that I am managing...needs to be evolving with the times too. Have to think outside of the box :)

"You can learn new things at any time in your life if you're willing to be a beginner. If you actually learn to like being a beginner, the whole world opens up to you" - UnKnown

The Little Prince

Yes; finally...Baby Sis & myself have finished watching the whole DVD collections of HOUSE from Season 1 to Season 5. House & his gang have been accompanying us for the last 9 months. Going to missed them so much :( How are we going to pass our time after this? Like Baby Sis said, we are going to feel so empty without them. At the end of each episode, I'm always in awe of its brilliance. This TV show do not disappoint. I'm totally in love with the story, the multiple characters, the new medical facts that I am learning every week, the sarcastic humor, the tension, the everything; and of course, the great man himself: Dr. Gregory House. This is a classic.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Little by little one walks far

What a lovely Sunday today is...

Attended Ammu's wedding (a fellow colleague from the O & S Department) at the Sri Maha Mariaman Temple in Puchong. The wedding was beautiful; steeped in tradition yet contemporary. Very well balance. It has something for everyone. And I have always loved the Indian's women communities sarees. The colors, the texture, the materials, the cuttings, the detailed designs; bursting with vibrancy & full of energy.

Hanging out with friends - Damian & Matte-Marit at Petaling Street. In the middle of a very hot afternoon, at a very typical dirty chinese hawker stall. Had a big bowl of a very delicious fish porridge with roasted duck :) It warms my tummy and satisfied my appetite, making me chuckle with delight. You guys remind me a little each time to live. And that one can live with very little. What's the material means nothing, it's what intangible that counts. Our collective spirit brings us closer.

Spending all day in my skirt & heels. I'm trying to be a girly girl for today :) I'm not a real girly girl. I'm not into princesses or butterflies. I'm a bit of a tomboy at heart, I love footy, I like to climb trees, I like adventures.

Had a glorious evening nap.

And the feeling that life is going to be A-OK.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

"Trust your bliss”

I am currently 28 years old...and for the most part, I feel pretty good :) However...I've got to admit that maintaining my health & physical appearances these days has never been harder. If my body were a car, I'd say that it still runs decently but it sure as hell spends a lot of the time in the workshop these days. My pimples still refuse to leave me alone :( They are terrorizing me mentally & emotionally.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

One year, 365 days, countless memories

The 2010/2011 English Premier League officially starts yesterday. At Anfield, it's the start of a new season, a new era. A new begining that promises revival and hope. The team has to stick together, win every matches there is, booked a spot in the Top 3 of the League table, win the Europa Cup, play very hard to eventually lifts the EPL Cup (after 19 years) and to qualify for the Champions League in 2012. A lot of new developments are happening in the club. I would say it's a good progress so far.

They've got a new manager on board; Roy Hodgson. They have 3 new players - Joe Cole, Danny Wilson & Milan Jovanovic. Fresh faces, younger legs, different experiences which will add value to The Kops. They will strengthen the squad from the back line to the front line.
The players have a new jersey too. They are no longer being sponsored by Carlsberg, their official logo will bear the Standard Chartered Bank emblem.

Good news that the Reds Captain Steven Gerrard & Fernando Torres is staying put with the team; instead of signing up with the cash-rich Real Madrid or Chelsea. It's a strong motivator for the rest of the players.

These developments are positive and pretty amazing. It's time to GO GO GO!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Bless my mess

This week, I am in so much pain...tooth-ache, gum-ache, pimples breakout, period pain :(
The tooth-ache & gum-ache pain have subsided a little, but if the pain keep on persisting, I will have to visit the dentist next week. On the acne thingy, for the past few months, there is this tendency for the pimples to consistently grow so big & red & swell on my chin. It hurts and makes me look very ugly :( I don't want to be ugly. And the worst thing is, after the pimples have dried up, it leaves a mark. My skin is not young anymore; therefore it takes a very long time to heal. Which causes uneven skin tones & pigmentation. I try to drink lots of water, I try to maintain a healthy & balanced diet, even though I'm really craving for junk food and oily chinese food. I make sure I poo everyday to detoxify myself. Could it be that the facial products that I am currently using is not compatible with my skin anymore? But, strange, it's only the chin part. Cannot be the job stress. I have far worst working days before, when I have taken on too many responsibilities; more than I can handle in fact; but I still look radiant, collected & fine. Now I look like a puberty teenager. Maybe it's the hormones. The women at work teased me that perhaps I lacked actual sex on an almost daily basis :) If continue like this, I many need to see a dermatologist. Meanwhile, I will drink more water, watch what I'm eating, continue poo-ing, excercise (to sweat more) and perhaps change my facial products.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

silence is special

a cute line:
If You Can Remember To Take Gingko Biloba Everyday, You Don't Need It :)

yes, i have a mission to document my every thoughts & experiences, pictures & quotes properly because i seriously believe i will become senile one day, and will truly need this blog for reference :)

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Through the empty streets and past the ghostly shadows

Work Tales - problems, problems & more problems...everyday. Pricing error, negative margin, supplier code not recognize in the system, non-deliveries, late deliveries, store team complaint regarding supplier's promoters, movement of consignment counters, D33 & D34 selling floor is being optimized & compacted to the max, store revamping, fasting month is approaching, monthly fees, unfinished 2010 nego tool & contract, sales progress, stock days & stock value...these interferences...makes me wish...I wish...I wish I have taken up Rodrigo & Atticus's offer...put this shit behind me...and open a new chapter. Here, it lacked some direction, purpose & motivation. Sigh. But then again, as long as I am in retail - everywhere is the same. No one's life is smooth sailing. We are all on the same bumpy ride.

Followed Patrick & Celtic to visit our Mid Valley store today. We even manage to catch "The Karate Kid" movie. It's not Karate; it's Kung-Fu. The movie hardly representing a breakthrough in cinematic accomplishment (or a narrative or emotional triumph over the original), it did what Hollywood does best; produce a competent entertainment that offers few surprises but succeeds completely as a crowd pleaser. And yes, Jackie Chan should play more mature-mentoring characters from now on. He is too old to play the hero. As for the young Jaden Smith, he has a rare combination of intelligence, wit and humanity. If groomed well, he will end up good like his parents; not like the other child actors who lost their way.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

how geeky of me

When I was a teenager, I loved boybands (it was the rave at that time); the BackStreet Boys, 911, N'SYNC, The Moffatts, Take That and many more boybands where their names are not that so memorable because they die off early in the crowded music market - but my favorite boyband of all time till today's present moment is still BoyZone. That's right. It was true love. Yes, I do know that they are completely unattainable. They were far, far, far beyond my reach and imagination. Meeting them in person...it was clearly an impossible thought.
I loved their vocals (especially Ronan's), their songs, their melodies, the way they dressed, not so much of their dancing though, their hair, their smiles, their personalities. I read up a lot about their songs, their producers, their concerts & tours, their backgrounds, their families, their siblings, their likes & dislikes, which Irish cities they were from, etc. I also collected their posters, magazine snippets from every teenage & girl magazines or newspapers that are available and kept them neatly in a box.
As I could not afford to buy their CDs, I bought all of their tapes instead. I enjoyed every single song in it. There was no one song that I did not like. By the time I reached my college years, I grew out of the BoyZone phase. In fact, I was quite embarassed that I had been utterfly infatuated with them. I began to discover and enjoy real music instead. No more teeny-poppy tunes. So, when my bedroom gets too packed & needed more space, I trashed all of the posters, clippings, except for the tapes of course.
And now, it's been 17 years later, and I'm 28. The boys have grown up, mature, gotten married, have kids, pursue their solo careers and sadly, their co-lead singer Stephen Gately have left us this year...but I still find myself enjoying their songs very much; just like the old times. Especially their new single - Gave It All Away.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Life is short but your here to flower

Work Tales - Yesterday, I celebrated my 2 years anniversary of working with the French. It has been an awesome 2 years for me. I rose above the storm, I race against time, I challenge the odds, I went the extra mile, I dodge the enemies' bullets & missiles, I soar above the valleys, I sink into the deep sea, troubles & problems came looking for me...but Thank You GOD, I survived it all! :) I guess this is a good reminder of all of the good and bad times that I have, the achievements and mistakes that I made before; which puts my life in perspective. And most importantly, it keeps me in touch with my own identity :) It's often a cycle where I find myself going through the same little sequences of stress, horror and then triumphant moments. I don't think I'll ever get tired of it all. I don't denied that my ocassional whine & rant-spree which everyone is probably tired of hearing it by now *giggles* sorry...but yes, I love my job and everything that comes with it.

Moving forward, it will be a very dark, difficult & trying period. I visited one of the English's stores in Shah Alam yesterday; and I was very very impressed. Atticus is back on track. I saw many good developments & improvements already taking place. They have added new POP displays, change their racking assets & planogramming, add-in new assortments, better pricing strategies and definitely; a more trim, compact & focus merchandising approach. I went wow. It's only a matter of time, when they will start to implement the open-space concept like ours. They are good copycats. Sigh. I don't want to compete anymore. It's very tiring. It will only create a price war in the market. That will be even worst. Instead, I will pursue a Differentiation Strategies. If we continue to compete like this, I will surely die. I cannot match the experience, the capabilities & the resources that Atticus have. Regardless of what techniques & tactics that Rodrigo & Atticus will use against me; I am already humble & honour that they see me as a worthy opponent :) This door is already close & seal. No turning back. When the time is right, I will end it on a high note and step down as beautifully as I can :)

I have increased my sales weight participation from 25% averagely to 45% now :) I still have a very long way to go. My ambition is to push it till 50%. Very bold. But I will try.
Last year, I did something new by introducing & reinforcing the Press Ad mechanics. This year, I have accomplished more:
(1) I brought in brands such as BEN 10, HotWheels, Barbie, Bob The Builder, Thomas & Friends as well as the Disney brands in the Sport Wheels category. This is to increase the sales value, upgrade the overall category branding & elevate the image of the overall store.
(2) The Push Car and half of the Bicycle category have already been converted to consignment. No more stock days problems, better volume display to bring out the outstanding visual impact, easier for me to organize roadshow events; which all leads to more sales & margin. Yay.
(3) Introduce & upgrade the Tricycle category; better quality, more vibrant colors.
(4) Home Gym, Elliptical Bike, Flat Bike, Magnectice Bike, Sit-up Bench >> complete range of the Big Fitness category. Partially consignment. Now everyone can open their own mini fitness center or have a complete work-out at home.
(5) Introduce new items: PlayHouse & Kites. The playhouse has been selling like hotcakes. This sku manage to create a very lively & playground-like-environment in D33.
(6) For the FIFA 2010 World Cup Tournament - we are the only ones who carries the official FIFA logo soccer ball.
(7) Brought in OGAWA & AIBI Fitness consignment counters.
(8) Intex Air Mattress (high-end range) have already been converted to consignment.

I'm still in disbelief that I have done all of the above. I feel I've grown 10 years older during my time here with the French. Physically and mentally. *laughs* I can't imagine how old I'll be if I stay here longer. I do not dare to think about it. It's begining to show on my face. *shivers* Now, I have to re-build back D34 :( I think it's time for me to have a heart-to-heart talk with Felix & Snow Petrol.

I may not be the best negotiator in the market, I am not the best buyer in the division, and certainly I am not the best employee in the company...what got me here today is GOD & my attitude - Passion, Commitment, Courage, Honesty, Loyalty. The next step is discovering how to live it right.