Saturday, May 31, 2014

Each 1, Reach 1

Hi J___,
Apologize as I forgotten to inform u that I had change the color pencil to books.

Yeah…this Ursula went and change one of my Press Ad line selections. Initially, it was suppose to be the Faber Castell 24 color pencils. But Ursula changes it to the children books @ RM0.99. Small value, it’s a volume game. Never mind, I will run the report on next week Monday and see whether the color pencil can sell more or the books can sell more. Even, if the books sell-thru quantities are higher, I am sure that when it comes to value dollar (which Ursula always preaches to me), I am very sure that the color pencils will emerge victory. Ursula leads mah…I am only the follower. I am a small potato. Nonetheless, I am not so small heart as well. My heart is as big as ham :) Ursula already apologizes. She did inform me, even though she only informs me after she had made the changes. By right, she should have told me, I will then go and make the changes. Or, she could have discuss with me first. Nonetheless, she has indeed apologize...what more could I ask for?

Rise As 1

Hi J___,
Thanks for your details.

Hmm…suddenly, this Ursula is so polite. Ursula wanted some clearance details on this particular discontinue supplier. Probably, Ursula did not expect me to use this clearance format that contains the necessary information that she wants – item codes, item descriptions, normal cost price, normal selling price, markdown price, stock-on-hand-balance and markdown losses simulation. She seems surprise and impressed. I think. Ok, I assume lah. Sometimes, I am not that blur and inefficient at all :)

Coffee Stain By Joseph

This Sabrina keeps on saying that her sales drop. She cannot sleep well at night because of it. Yeah right…for this month, her category sales are on the rise. You think I didn’t read the daily report…I am reading & analyzing the report every day…it’s just that I pretend don’t know only. I buat bodoh :)


:) Before the advent of mobile devises and apps – children of my generation were entertained and occupied for hours and at most no cost at all – with the below games.

(1) Lat Tali Lat >> this unique Malaysian hand game is played by three players or more. It is often played when there is a need to decide on how to split multiple players into two teams when playing other games. Two popular versions of the chant in this game are ‘Lat tali lat tali tam plom’ or ‘Lai lai lili lai tam tom’.

(2) Five Stones >> this game is better known in Malaysia by the name; Batu Seremban. Mostly played by girls, it is a good test of dexterity and hand-eye coordination. Though it can be played with actual stones, colorful sand-filled batu seremban were also popular.

(3) Rock, Paper, Scissors >> this popular hand game between two players was said to have been invented in ancient China. The local version of the game is sometimes referred to as ‘One, two, jus’ or ‘One, two, som’. This game is sometimes played with punishment variants.

(4) Eraser Battle >> this classroom game gained popularity about 30 years ago. Children would take turns flipping their erasers with the aim of landing on their opponent’s eraser. They used to collect cheap fancy erasers with country flags on them for this purpose.

(5) Conquer >> yet another modern classroom game, based on the traditional Japanese board game; “GO”. Mathematics exercise book with gridlines are used to play this game, where two players take turns drawing their selected symbol to surround the other player’s units. This game requires a lot of strategy.

(6) Pepsi-Cola >> no one seems to know how the name came about, but this game seems to have gained popularity from the 1990s onwards. Standing in a ring, players chant ‘Pepsi-Cola’ and jump apart. Taking turns, players must try to kick the foot of another player who tries to dodge him or her, eliminating each other until one winner remains.

Sunday, May 25, 2014


Another very long overdue post...
16.03.2014 Malaysia Women Marathon - Thank You GOD, Praise To The LORD, Bless You GOD – running on my home turf of Shah Alam, for the second time - completed my first hazy & drizzling MWM 21KM. I Survived!

Sea Butterflies

Hahaha...a very long over due post...
09.03.14 Brooks Run To Live Marathon – 10KM.
My second Brooks Run :)

Macam Champion


Over the years, Papa Ham have a growing lump, right at the bottom of his face, at the rear end of his neck. Finally, Papa Ham admitted himself for a thorough medical check-up at the Pantai Hospital in Klang. He went through a CT scan and some radiologist test. Thereafter, an operation was advice to remove the lump to determine what the causes are. The doctor strongly disagrees with doing a biopsy because if the needle goes through the lump, and if the lump is indeed cancerous, thus the cancer cells will start to spread. So, on last week Friday, Papa Ham went under the knife, he do not have to put up for a night at the hospital. I send him to the hospital early in the morning and pick him up after work. I have to say that my Papa Ham was very brave to go through all of the process all by himself single handedly. Then, comes the waiting period. Well, I am crossing fingers. I’m waiting for the good news, hopefully. I don’t want to talk or blog about it so much because I’m a bit superstitious about it. Nonetheless, right now, we can sigh in relieve and give everyone the good news that the lump is not cancerous, it is all clean…the cells probably mutated thus causing the lump to grow over the years…and our Papa Ham is still alive :)

GOD – I pray to you, that please – we (as a family) seek and want for your Protection, Purpose, Peace, Provision, Favorability, Forgiveness, Glory, Goodness, Grace & Mercy to follow us for the rest of our lives and we would like to have this aspects in our own individual life, in our family and in our workplace.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Mood Indigo

Last Saturday (yes, I’m working again) – Ursula babbles a lot of things to me – last time, the work environment (under Mr. Jan Vet) was so much better, every Friday, she used to go for her happy hour...right now, she no longer does that anymore. Every day in the morning, she comes into the office being very positive, and by the time she gets home, she gets depress a little. She acknowledges on how I feel, where there are just too much of work to be done and we had so little time to accomplish them. She is not happy that for the coming FIFA Brazil World Cup where she have so many appliance roadshow activities that she have line up for the company, they are being banned by The General at the moment until further notice, due to the current presence of the new CEO. What made her mad even further is right at the main entrance which used to be her department’s category prime location, is being replaced with one of Baldwin’s consignment furniture. If it were Milo or milk powder, Ursula still can accept it but it’s totally unacceptable to see Baldwin’s item in that area, and it’s not even a top 100 item. Aiyo

You know more blogging about Ursula after this; unless it is really necessary…my life should be the priority from now on :)


Ding Tai Fung @ Empire Gallery, Subang – had dinner with Paige & Baldwin. Not much gossips to share on that night. Only that we have a new CEO on board. Previously the new CEO is attached with the English Empire; located in Korea, China and the USA. Definitely, the new CEO will bring in some English flavor into G13. The new CEO have also hired a new HR Director and guess what…the new HR Director is previously M13’s HR Director. What a small world indeed. I really hope that the new CEO will be able to bring in some form of standardization and processes into G13. It’s about time. As we grow bigger, with multiple formats…we really need a systematic approach in everything. Plus this, The General is also making everything so kelam-kabut. Headless chicken. Indecisive and refuse to speak up. I am sure Marcus, Leonardo & Ursula is also having a very tough time to navigate.

For this month, Ursula’s appliance team has done something…because, all of a sudden, their categories have recorded extremely good sales. Don’t know if this Ursula has time all of this so coincidently so that the new CEO will take notice of her. Meanwhile, Marcus has launched a new textile catalogue, but surprisingly, their sales still register at a negative. Ursula ask me to guess what was missing or which category that have performed badly – I simply tembak and said that its the Men’s Basic and I was right. Last time, with the French, the top selling item is the men’s basic t-shirt.

In the mean time, with all these new circumstances - I shall play by ear then :)

Fluent Space

Last week, Ursula wants to be included in my emails to the store team and this week, she wants to be included in my emails to my suppliers. Yes, she is starting to come in…into my work territory. I welcome her. It is agreed upon that Ursula will lead and I shall follow. She has the keys to the car. I am only just the co-pilot. And I think it’s high time that she starts to concentrate on the stationery department. I think she is focusing way too much on the Auto/DIY portfolio. I feel neglected. I am jealous. I want Ursula’s 100% full attention. I want to be her blue eye girl. I want to be her favorite :) Nah...hahaha…I know that I will be even more tortured after this.

Ursula have start to amend my consignment books description by putting the supplier’s name initial in the front of every books titles for easier indication and have also ask Mimi to run my master list on the quantity per pack report. I suspect that she wants to do some ordering or investment buy. But what is more surprising is that Mimi comes and informs me about it. I don’t know is it because Ursula asks Mimi to test me and to check on my reaction or Mimi was sincerely in pre-informing me about it. I just told Mimi – ok, let her do lah, as long as Ursula is happy. I also don’t dare to enter her room now. I takut :)

Paper + Toast

Ursula bought some ice cream cones for her minions the other day. She gave one to Gerrard as well. I don’t have :(

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Big Fish, Big Bucks


Last game of the season.
Liverpool 2 - 1 Newcastle.
Could have won the EPL...a bit wasted.
Nonetheless, it was a great season for all us.
Congratulations to Manchester City.
Like Natalie said - Anyone But United :)

Identifying Needs. Identifying You.

Work Tales - sometimes you just get the feeling that you are not up to the task.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Birmingham stay afloat

Silva @ SS15, Subang – hanging out with James while watching the Liverpool vs. Chelsea match. James brought along his younger brother, a couple and another guy friend. Yeah, I have decided not to pursue this any further. We are just good buddies. A friendship is just cool enough :) Love in its purest forms – affection, friendship, romance and unconditional love.

The Teh Tarik Place: Simply Sedap

This week have not been a very good week for me – keep on having bashes from Ursula…in a way - it’s good that it keeps me on my toes & being in the alert mode, know what I am doing, know where I am heading to…but the downside to it, is that when I start to...cannot answer her questions…it goes downhill from there…I’m like a newbie all over again…this whole experience…it’s the lowest moment of my career. I haven’t been feeling 100% since I first arrived; back in 2012. In fact, I’ve been feeling like total sh*t. The threat of being bash has been lurking for quite a while, but now comes the realization part. You’ve just got to face the devil, face the facts and I will face the situation head on. From a personal viewpoint, my time in G13 – I didn’t make the impact I’d hope for and believed that I would, and that’s something for me to chew on now for a little while. I feel embarrassed and ashamed! I feel so awkward, unworthy, and confused! I felt very undeserving! It’s not a nice feeling but I got to show to Ursula that I am a change person, I have make some progress and I’ve got to show to everybody that I can bounce back.


Ana Muslim – it’s a local fiction girl character that caters to the Muslim pre-teen group, which has spawned a collection of books, magazines, stationeries and clothes. And Ursula wants them to be in the store. After all, our biggest customer base is the Malays, the current growing segment is children, its consignment (therefore, there is no stock holding), books are big in value…this Ursula is really canggih...she can actually think of this new trend that is very hot in the market at the moment, she actually catch it (the idea)…my salutations to her…she is really business-savvy…she have never put a foot wrong thus far…should I trust her? Should I have more faith in her? Leonardo will not be able to conjure up all of this.

Nintendo 3DSXL

This Sabrina is really a very good kaki bodek. Previously, all leaflet artwork checking (first round) – we don’t have to show it to our bosses. Then, this Sabrina starts to show it to Ursula, and now Ursula wants to see and check on every artwork, don’t want to wait until the third & final round where she will sign everything off.

Camp David

Email from Ursula:

Dear J___,

Appreciate in future any email correspondence to stores, please include me as I also wanted to know what happy thing happening in stationery.

:( At first, I did include Ursula in the email loop, then she criticized me that my email is like a karangan, too lengthy. The store people will have no time in reading them. Then, I improvise it further by writing down the points in bullet point form. Ursula still criticized me…she commented - who wants to read…too much of information. So from there, I only put Ursula in the email loop on an on-and-off-basis. If I see there is a need, I will include her in. If I can skip her over, I will. Now, Ursula wants to be back in the loop after one of the store people reply my email and cc to her. I know the email is extensive; but at least my store team know what to focus on over the week, what are the future promotions lines; so that they can check on stock availability, anticipate future space planning display, how is their department's sales progress compare to their peers, which category that is doing well, which category that is not doing so well & need further reinforcement, sharing of good practices in terms of merchandise display & location. I don’t know how much this will impact my store team, but for those who takes the initiative & worried about their sales, this email serves as a very good positive reporting tool. It works for me.

So, shall I include Ursula back in? :) Nah...I am not taking her above comments as a compliment…I smell sarcasm there :)

Mare Erythraeum

Free Tree Society @ Jalan Limau Purut, Bangsar, KL – did some volunteering work yesterday morning with Small Ham & Salami :) It's a very nice nursery and we learned to transplant a couple of musk orange and orange passion fruit…hope these baby seedlings will grow up abundantly.

Piano Skyline

Liverpool 3 – 3 Crystal Palace :(
So sad…we were leading 3 – 0 all the way until the final 18 minutes. We lost everything.
It was a match that we could win, that we should win. Sloppy defense, we need better defenders for the next season.
I am very angry with this match…with Chelsea, it was understood because Jose Mourinho parked 2 busses in the box, their intention was not to play the game but to block The Reds from playing. But with Crystal Palace…what a waste.
Manchester City will be the new champ.
Nonetheless, there is no shame to it all…we did well all the way until the Chelsea game…we will be in the top 4 and booked ourselves a place in the next Champions League. Mission accomplished! :)

Sunday, May 04, 2014

I want my blue sky

I really embarrassed myself the other day – we were having our division meeting; brainstorming on our upcoming Raya 2014 leaflet. Then, this Marcus asks me a question – and I replied back that I will check with my boss first. It was a bit awkward at that point of time because – Leonardo was also present in the meeting. OMG. How would Leonardo felt – an ex-staff mention that she will check with her new boss. I show disrespect to Leonardo. Then to make the situation worst, there was someone who was mocking me in the meeting. I don’t know who was it but I suspect it was Linda – saying wah, my boss. I know that I should just mention Ursula’s name out instead of the word boss…I also don't know why I did it...I just blurted it out. Gerrard, Sabrina, Shawn & Christy was huddling together while I sat next to Pietro. The 4 of them was internally discussing & whispering among themselves. I know, it’s that bad…I just want to dig a hole at that point of time and hide inside it...or get a beer & get drunk over it.

the 4 ronin

Sigh…I feel so dwarf :( We will be having our Kiddy Fair on the 28th May. I can see that both Alice & Baldwin have changed their game strategy recently. They have brought in merchandise that are bulky, thus it is easier to be display at the store level, more colorful which will attract the customers and more bigger in value dollar which will help to increase their sales. Whereas for me…I am still playing with lower value items, small size items and clearance items. Thus, it perfectly explains why my sales is struggling to go up, the store team hates to manage my stocks because it is so hard to be display and my department is lacking of new items, creativity & freshness. I failed. Miserably. Now, I am having a bigger urgency to see through my plans for the calculators, pencil bags, desktop storage, office equipments and whiteboards categories. I am so slow. I am so dong - dong. I feel flat :(

knitted dude

Dear Ursula,

You mention to me the other day that I am not highly motivated to speak out…thus, permission to speak out now…I know that I talk a lot on my plans, there is the structure but there is no action plan to be seen. However, I will try to execute on it right now. The first quarter of this year was to implement and execute the monthly MOR replenishment report, touching on the top categories of Pen, File, Book & Paper categories. I remember that I told you that the results are still too early to tell…however with your experience with Auto/DIY, you were very sure that the results were already there. Because you believe by doing something different compare to last year, results (whether are good or bad) will be there. And yes, again you are right. And now that everything is already stabilize and auto-pilot on its own…I know that I will just need to focus on these key drivers as my leaflet builders and to build up my third group of categories. After all, the stationery department is a make-up of multiple slices of cake to become 1 cake. I also look at the wrong angle previously. I thought that I should look at it from the item codes point of view…by right, I should be looking at it from the categories and suppliers point of view too. I know that I should not pointed out to you that you are also very kelam-kabut – but if you did notice, the first quarter of the year, you were very consistent, very sure of yourself, very decisive…but when it comes to – what’s next – you run scatter all around the place. If you are running scattering all over the place, how am I (the co-pilot) know where you are heading to. I don’t know whether I should accelerate or to remain still.

During this period of discovering & experimentation – I understand your frustration with me. The performance & results have not been what you are used to or expected of. And I both understand and share your dissatisfaction. I have always believed that an individual never stops learning during his/her career and I know that I will take invaluable experience from my time here. I know that you detest prima donnas, moaners and the weak-minded. I also know that I should trust you more. You won't bring me to Holland.

So, with effective tomorrow - I am just going to try my very best, I will step out, I will move forward – let’s see how the journey begins, how the journey travels along the way and how the journey will ends :) I know that I won’t achieve it all. But hey, life would be a direction-less blur if we didn’t set any goals for ourselves, so I’m going to at least try.


Us Versus Them

Dear Ursula,

If you want to over-write me, please do so. I am very sure that when you does over-write me, you are not doing it for the sake of doing it, you are doing it because you have to…based on your wisdom, your logic and your rationality. My only small request is that when you change the line selections; for example…please do inform me earlier…I will go into the general folder and make the necessary changes…because if you didn’t inform me, I will not be able to learn, I will not be able to understand your point of view, I cannot see your vision. I have already given you the assurance since the beginning that you will be in the driver’s seat. I hit a brick wall since I arrived, I am bringing this department to nowhere, as a matter of fact it got worst…therefore, now you have to step in, intervene and bring it to somewhere. I made mistakes with the strategies, the tactics, the suppliers, the store team, fellow colleagues - I played badly, that's my responsibility. I know that we are at the highest level in the business where such errors are punished. I know that you are a very ambitious person. You want the department to achieve, you want your buyers to achieve. You will be at the planning until you go to bed. You not only expect us to exceed expectations, but you also demand an incredibly high output from yourself too. I know that this job for you is continual. You live and breathe for buying. You study it, you look on how it can be better, for how you can continue moving forward. I still don’t know and unsure whether you are good or bad. You probably didn’t show me your true colors yet because you know that people from the outside are looking in…but I can say that your performance so far have been very good to me because I have learn lots from you and you have fulfill your responsibility as a boss to the maximum. I am most impressed with your opposition analysis, a full review of the previous action plans and the various catch-ups on the current & upcoming projects. It is only me that is stubborn who wants to stick to the old working ways, refuse to change, my lack of passion & believing and my poor execution finishes.

If you have to bash me up like how you did to Christy – please do so then. Bash me right, left, up, down…bash me as hard as you want…I admit that I am your worst student thus far...nonetheless, I am open to your new way of learning and doing things. You mention that you won’t bad mouth me…I too; will not bad mouth you back. And I also promised that I won’t cry.


It’s always midnight somewhere

Another April Tribulations:

THANK YOU GOD, PRAISE TO THE LORD, BLESS YOU GOD! Thank You GOD for Your FAITHFULNESS to this family of mine :)

Small Ham was involved in a car accident last month. Baby Sis just got her new purple MyVi (which she name it Barney) and she got it crashed into another car that was park beside the road in less than a month. The accident was kind of bad because the MyVi did a spin, the front air bag was dislodged and the front wheel came off. Luckily, there were good samaritans who offer a helping hand. Small Ham is ok…only some cuts and in shock. We drove all the way down from Shah Alam to Bangsar, then bring Small Ham to GH for a body check-up. Government hospital is really a government hospital. Took us nearly 3 hours to complete the entire medical routine from the x-ray scans to the body check-up. They didn’t go by numbers. They see which patient is in more need of the doctor’s attention…thus, those patients with minor case have to wait far more longer. Even, in the middle of the night and in the early hours of the morning, there are still many people who patronize the hospital; young & old, the adults & the babies, people from all walks of life. Nonetheless, everything is ok now. However, whenever the phone (be it the mobile phone or the house phone) rings – I will get a little bit jittery. Sigh…since when I become so weak…so afraid…


Yay – no more water rationing :) The water supply have resumed back to normal, effective 1st May.