Category Archives: Review

How many episodes are left due to the writers strike?

OK, OK, I am in Taiwan, but this doesn’t mean that the Writers Strike that is occuring in the US isn’t affecting me.  I do regurlary download episodes from iTunes and watch them on my iPhone or iPod, so yes I need to stay on top of this.

So what shows am I really into lately? Well honestly I can care less for Heroes.  For some reason I feel “tired” after watching those episodes (too many pointless plot twists), and iTunes stopped carrying season two anyway, so no big loss.  I am however watching Kyle XY, a show about a cloned boy who was brought out of the artificial womb at the age of 15, an subsequently has the emotional and mental abilities of Data on Star Trek.  I am also digging the newly released Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, but the problem is when will all the “good” shows stop airing?

Well I found a regurlarly updated page that is going to be your salvation.  Find out how many more episodes of your favorite show are left on  the page Effect of the 2007–08 Writers Guild of America strike on television.


Get Your Gel On

These gel drinks are sold as healthy and refreshing, but seem like a bag of watered down sandwich jelly to me. These were originally popular in Japan, but they finally made it to 7-11 in Taiwan.

I haven’t tried one here, but I did try one when I was in Tokyo. They taste like room-temperature Jello made with too much water.If you are a vegan, I wouldn’t recommend you drink (or is it eat) these, since they are probably made with animal gelatin.

Fake iPhone / iPod Touch

I took this photo at a local 3C (Consumer Products Shop). They sell Apple Products, and fake Apple Products in the display case next to them. This fake iPhone or iPod Touch is about the size of an iPod Classic and is a steal at around ~68 USD.

Gmail, the king of online email

Everyone by now should know about the Gmail, the free web mail service with ~4.5 GB of storage offered by Google. The amazing thing is that they keep adding more and more customer oriented features to the service.

Just recently Google added IMAP support to Gmail. This allows easy email/folder/label syncing between multiple computers and Gmail.

When you have an IMAP account, you can leave messages on the server until you would like to delete it. Additionally, if you have multiple devices / computers accessing the same account, information such which emails you have read and sent mail are synced to the server. Lastly, unlike POP3 (another standard), IMAP only needs to download a portion of the complete email. For example, it will only download the subject, until you ask to read the full email at which point Gmail will stream the email to you. This is a much desired feature allowing users to keep all of their email on a managed server and have the user experience of a desktop mail client.

Taipei Story House

Stiched image of the Taipei Story House
Originally uploaded by Nothing Really Poignant

Last weekend we were looking for new and interesting places to visit and we stumbled upon a website talking about “Taipei Story House”. Steven convinced me that this is the place where Ivy and Owen had to meet, but after going there I didn’t think this was the case. Steven now claims “I’m not so sure honey”, but I am sure it isn’t the place since I showed Ivy the photo and she has never been there.

Well what is the “Taipei Story House”? Well it isn’t anything I expected. I was hoping to see some colonial house with exhibits on historical Taiwan. I was also hoping I could take photo’s inside like you can do at Filoli, but unfortunately you can’t, and I soon found out that you really wouldn’t want to bother.

The only redeemable thing was the fact that they let you listen to your MP3 player, and I was listening to the director / producer podcast for the Season 3 finale of Doctor Who. This was very entertaining and made up for the drab environment.

So how can I describe the Taipei Story House other than saying it is a nice place to listen to a podcast? Well it is a small 4 room museum about buildings that house museums. Now they don’t talk about famous museums like the one at Bilbao, but instead they talk about old buildings that are converted to museums. This is an homage to museums that really shouldn’t be because it is really boring. Sure they talk about great places like the Tate Museum in London, but the articles look like they were pulled down from Wikipedia. I really didn’t learn anything other than there are quite a few gullible people (including myself) who are willing to part with 50 NTD to see a museum on museum buildings.

They had a gift shop that sold totally unrelated items. They also had a nice cement bench that is so hot from baking in the sun you can lose weight from sitting and sweating on it. To top everything off they have an expensive cafe near by, but after sweating for 10 minutes I wasn’t really hungry. Maybe I will go back if the visit to the cafe, but the 50 NTD cover charge is somewhat steep.

Visit to Taiwan’s National Museum of History

This weekend Steven and I went to visit Taiwan’s National Museum of History. The main reason we went to this museum was to see the Terra Cotta Warriors from mainland China. Now the entry to the museum is normally 20 NT (under a dollar) but it is 200NT to see the Terra Cotta exhibit.

Unfortunately the museum doesn’t have adequate crowd controls. There were some rooms that were so crowded that no one could move. This really took away from the whole experience and also highlights how inadequate Taiwan’s fire safety standards are, because if there was an emergency, people would definitely be trampled.

Fortunately the more expensive museum pass included a “free” pass to the main exhibit. This part of the museum was a breath of fresh air with an eclectic mixture of both modern and historical pieces. Additionally, since everyone was going to see the Terra Cotta Warriors, the main exhibit halls were relatively open with plenty of space for all of the visitors.

If you have ever had a chance to see the Terra Cotta Warriors before (I saw them when they visited San Francisco in 1994) then I recommend you skip the visiting exhibit and just visit the less crowded / less expensive main exhibit hall.

You can eat my hummus anytime you like

Last Friday a couple co-workers shared a cab and headed over to Sababa Pita Bar for some pitas. While in line to order I told Sandra that I am not really a fan of hummus and she told me how much she likes it and that she has been to this restaurant three times already.   I told her “You can eat my hummus anytime you like.” When Laverne overheard that he said it sounded really dirty, although I can’t say why.

Anyway, I had a chicken pita sans yogurt (88 NTD/ea) and two “Moroccan Cigars” (58 NTD/ea). All together as a combo with fries and a Coke my lunch came out to be 200 NTD – not bad.