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Taste Test: McDonald’s Nasi Lemak Burger Feast

One of McDonald's best special burgers by far.

McDonald’s staple menu of Fillet-O-Fish, McSpicy and Quarter Pounder with Cheese is rather stale by now, even with the seasonal items like the Prosperity burger and Samurai burger. McDonald’s seems to have realised this over the past two years and have tried to mix things up every now and then since.

My favourite of the new mixes was the “Create Your Taste” concept, which I enthusiastically wrote about last year. “Create Your Taste” has since quietly disappeared (to my great disappointment), probably because it took up too much preparation time for a fast food restaurant. It did give birth to two new staple items, though–the Angus Cheese burger and the Chicken with Apple Slaw burger, which they (thankfully) replaced with Buttermilk earlier this year. In retrospect, perhaps “Create Your Taste” was just a crowdsourced experiment all along.

Then, of course, there was the salted egg burger, which garnered mostly mixed reviews. Now McDonald’s is back with another locally-inspired creation, the Nasi Lemak Burger. Or, should it be known as the Roti Lemak burger instead?

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One Last Look – Sungei Road Thieves’ Market

One of the entrances to the market.

10th July 2017 marked the last day of operations (if you can call it that) for the second-hand flea market at Sungei Road, more popularly known as the Thieves’ Market. It being a weekday, I didn’t get the chance to witness its last closing, but I was present on the last weekend on both evenings. … Read more

Manekineko: K Box, reinvented

Back in the early 2000s, the name K Box, to Singaporeans, was perhaps synonymous with karaoke. It offered decent prices relative to its competitors like Party World KTV, had many outlets islandwide, possessed the latest the largest song collection and also served meals, tidbits and refreshments.

Then, Teo Heng burst into the scene around 2007 with its first outlet at Katong Shopping Centre. It offered a no-frills concept, charging by room size instead of per pax, at far more affordable rates. While it didn’t offer any food or beverages, it allowed you to bring in your own food and (non-alcoholic) drinks,  a trade-off most people are more than happy to accept. Originally situated at less accessible places like Katong and Sembawang, it has since expanded to places such as JCube, Rendezvous Hotel and Suntec City. Today, it’s safe to say that Teo Heng has displaced K Box as the first thing that comes to mind when you say ‘karaoke’.

Meanwhile, K Box went through some tough times. Many of its outlets were shuttered, perhaps due to poor business, and it made the news in 2014 for the wrong reason–hackers managed to access K Box’s database and leaked personal particulars of its 300,000 members.

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Walkabout: 2017 Geylang Serai Market Bazaar

Ramadan is upon us once again, which also signifies the start of the annual Geylang Serai Market Bazaar. Billed as the biggest pasar malam event of the year in Singapore, it hosts 900 stalls across a few roads right outside Paya Lebar MRT.

Stalls are well in demand, since the bazaar is always teeming with crowds all month long, Muslim or non-Muslim alike. Rental is said to be as high as $17,000 this year, and some shops (probably those not selling food and those not blessed with TheSmartLocal’s or LadyIronChef’s midas touch) are still struggling to break even.

As you would expect, prices are exorbitant (at least, by pasar malam standards) and are at least on par with that of recent large-scale pasar malam events like Artbox and River Hongbao. Still, that isn’t enough to deter the millennial crowds, who are apparently willing to pay $20 and upwards for a slice of avocado toast.

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Welcome to the Logistical Revolution

During my marketing module in university some four years back, I remember my fellow peers coming up with ideas like making healthy lunchboxes and delivering them within the CBD, and hassle-free renting of bicycles around campus. I thought, at that time, whether such concepts would seem a little too far-fetched. Six months later, during my environment sustainability elective, we were tasked to come up with a  car-sharing scheme similar to ZipCar in Singapore and promote it via video. We eventually settled on allowing users to drop off and return cars at select locations across Singapore, using a membership card that would serve as a car key. To solve the potential problem of having too many cars one at location, we proposed a roving crew that would chauffeur ‘stranded’ cars back to their rightful homes. While we were forced to sell our proposal, deep down, I wasn’t convinced that this would work out in the real world.

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Nine Months On — Where have the Funan shops moved to?

It’s been nearly nine months since Funan shut its doors, and perhaps now’s a good time to take stock–where have all the shops in Funan moved to?

Challenger

The Funan outlet on its second last day.

While other shops have come and gone over the years, Challenger was a mainstay at Funan. The Funan outlet was Challenger’s oldest and biggest one, spanning an entire floor divided into themed sections. It had a far wider selection compared to your neighbourhood Challenger store. There were sections dedicated to gaming, networking equipment, laptops, smartphones, cameras, and even office furniture.

While Challenger initially said that it had no plans to set up a new flagship store, it eventually signed a lease to takeover the basement floor at Bugis Junction which was formerly occupied by Virtualand. The new flagship store is slated to open in Q2 2017. Here’s hoping that it will feature a similarly eclectic mix of products as with the Funan store.

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TribeCar Review — Fuss-free, Ad-hoc Car Rental

Update 11 March 2017: TribeCar has formed a partnership with Grab allowing freelance drivers to drive on an hourly basis under the Grab PowerHour scheme. Check out my thoughts below.

I first knew of TribeCar a few months back, when a promoter gave me a flyer somewhere along the City Hall area. Initially, I didn’t think much of it.

Then, it was time to make some Valentine’s Day plans this year and I toyed with the idea of renting a car for an entire Saturday. After some research, I found this was harder than I anticipated. Most car rental companies operate on a traditional model where you have to make a trip down to their offices to collect the car. On weekends, this poses a problem since their offices are not open. Weekend rentals for these companies would then mean you have to rent the car from Friday to Monday and incur the extra costs that come with it, including overnight parking.

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Walkabout: Chinatown Street Decorations & Bazaar 2017

For a few weeks before Chinese New Year every year, Chinatown will be all dressed up, with the centrepiece being the sculpture at the intersection of Eu Tong Sen Street/ North Bridge Road and Upper Cross Street.

This year, the sculpture is that of a giant rooster, one that is so conspicuous that it appears in almost every other post about Chinese New Year.

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Need a Graphics Card? Get the ZOTAC GTX 1060 6GB from Qoo10

The ZOTAC GTX 1060 Mini (Source: ZOTAC)

Looking to spruce up your ageing desktop PC with a brand new graphics card? Or just looking for an affordable card for your new gaming PC? If you live in Singapore, the ZOTAC GeForce GTX 1060 6GB is probably the best choice.

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Guide: Mastering Qoo10 for the Best Discounts

Qoo10 offers almost everything under the sun, but is impossibly difficult to navigate.

Qoo10 is undoubtedly the most recognisable e-shopping platform in Singapore, and for good reason (read: good prices and frequent coupon deals). Unfortunately, it also happens to offer the most convoluted shopping experience.

As an aside, they should really hire a good user interface designer to sort through all the clutter. In the mean time, we have to make do with what we have and try to make sense of this mess. Once you do so, you’ll realise how much more you can get out of Qoo10’s various deals and promotions.

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A Last Look at Tanjong Pagar Railway Station

Corroding tracks.

I first knew of the existence of the KTM Singapore-Malaysia route some ten years ago, when we were whisked to a train station in the middle of the night, on the last day of our Secondary 3 overseas adventure camp at Taman Negara. I alighted at Woodlands terminal, not knowing that had I stayed on, I would be able to enjoy a rare glimpse of the disappearing Singapore wilderness through a train at ground level. That was something I never got to do before the Tanjong Pagar-Woodlands route closed for good in 2011. The only silver lining? Someone made a video of the entire train experience before it shuttered and uploaded it on YouTube.

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