Sunday, 26 March 2006

Yeah Yeah....

While chatting last night, I realised that my flybacks home are quite short, so rather than waste my time on doing everyday stuff, I should spend the time with family and friends.

So today, I decided to get a haircut, down at Plaza Singapura. The place I wanted to go to was full and my fallback was pretty expensive (so I'm cheap, sue me!), so I decided to go to another place. Interestingly, it is a "professional hairstyling and treatment centre", also providing beauty, slimming and makeover services.

When I stepped in there, it was buzzing with activity. It was a rather large and bright establishment, offering tea and a healthy stack of very thumbed men's magazines.

The first step was obviously asking me how I would like to cut it...and then the stylist asked, "oh do you suffer from hair loss?".

I thought I was hearing wrong. "Excuse me?" I replied
"Hair loss. Are you on any program at the moment?"
"Ah no," I replied stuttering a little. "Why do you ask?"
"Well, it appears that you are thinning at the back here, and you may want to check it out. Perhaps you can see one of our consultants."
I proceeded to blindly follow the sales to their special LCD monitor hooked up to some sort of optical device to do a scalp check.

"Yes - there and there, " the consultant said, pointing at the screen. "There are thinner hairs growing, so your folicles have shut. You are starting to lose hair. You're at the stage where your hormones cause the folicles to be smaller, so the hair becomes thinner. When the hairs become thinner, they fall out easier, so you will slowly have less and less hair. Some of your folicles have shut completely - see here and here? They are dead now. However, in the early stages, you can treat it and you will have more full hair".

My head began to spin. Part of it was due to seeing my scalp so magnified (which admittedly is rather scary. It's just like the tv commercials back home, where by the specialist is checking out the scalp). Part of it was really due to the fact that I may go bald. It was just yesterday that I was thinking about my out-of-town days where I had a lot of hair.

I did some quick thinking. I have noticed a few more strands of hair on the pillows and my hair appears to be thinner. My Mum and Dad are not bald, and neither was my grandfather on my father's side. I just can't remember my Mum's side....I vaguely remember one/two uncles being bald. Drats...

"Don't worry, I will cut your hair so that it sweeps to one side," said the stylist, but the only thing I heard was "comb-over"

Apparently, I'm in the early stages and can go for treatment to revers the process. Treatements cost over $100 a visit, and in the early stages, one should go for around 6 times...which is definitely a fair amount.

I admit that I was slightly intrigued as I know that I don't really care for my hair that much (but apparently it is hormonal). According to the consultant, washing too much is bad, and so is not rinsing the hair enough (which is a bad habit of mine when I am in a hurry).
I waved away the expensive treatment that they were providing, but they still managed a cross sell on some antiseptic lotion for the hair. So I walked away with a new haircut (and less hair - *sob*) and some lotion. To be honest, I hadn't realised that so much research had been done in this area - all I remembered was that some people but brandy in their hair to help promote growth. Not sure if that was just an household remedy.

Now, I hope nobody buys me a wig as a joke...

Sunday, 12 March 2006

Car brain

Today, I managed to get a bit of a glimpse of the latest F1 qualifier in Bahrain. It was a rather interesting affair as the rules had changed significantly from last year, especially with the cars running smaller engines - which I think is a good thing as these modifications will filter down into production cars hopefully.

In watching the event, I marvelled at how the cars have undergone so much modification and technological improvements over the years that they are a far cry from those of yester-year. Looking at older footage reminded me of the cars being in little cars, with almost no downforce.

This also got me thinking about my few failed forays into getting a car of my own. Sure, I am definitely tardy and suffer from consumer remorse, but I can honestly say that I have not been in Sydney long enough to warrant me getting a car. I was thinking about how quickly technology changes and how fashions end, and so a purchase of a car, which typically involves a large sum of money, will require careful consideration.

Do I need a fast car? I would say, yes, relatively, as this would minimise time to destination.

Do I need a luxurious car? My answer would be yes, especially if I am driving +70kms almost daily.

Do I want a fuel efficient car? My answer here would also be yes, as I want something which is quite easily maintained.

Do I want a spacious car? Yes, I like something which is relatively spacious so I can relax. I don't want to feel too cramped.

Manual? Yes please... I reckon that learning manual was a great thing. I love it. Except when stuck in traffic for more than 1/2 hr.

Unfortunately, given the competing nature of these three variables, I doubt that all three can be satisfied easily. Which makes it tough, so it's back to sacrificing again. Personally, I want something which I can drive at least a couple of years and has a bit of oomph (current family car is slow) and has good brakes (virtually non-existent in current car).

As one can understand, a car is more a liability than an asset. There is insurance, registration, maintenance, fuel...the whole list adds up rather nicely. All these things deterred me from getting a car before as I would be paying for all this and not really using the car. It's been good to be able to drive (although relatively long distances) as this has allowed me to appreciate cars more and more.

One of the two cars which I would love to own (ok, I don't need to own, but maybe drive) would be a Porsche and Ferrari. They just exude class and style when they fly by. Unlike a "boyz toy" these are beautiful "men's toyz". Ah...I will continue to dream...