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A kiss between two cute girls

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These two girls are so incredibly cute together. I so want to see them together forever. Yes, even though they are just high-school kids who are probably susceptible to mood swings/fickleness/indecisiveness about love and their partners and have yet to enter the real adult world, Glee’s Santana and Brittany are the cutest ‘Lebanese’ couple in TV-land and I just can’t get enough of them. They give me so much hope. Seeing them make out is alluringly hot as well. Ahem.

Here’s a little heartfelt moment of how deep their love runs for each other and why they are meant to be together no matter what from Glee season 2, episode 15 “Sexy”:

Santana: I wanna be with you, but I’m afraid of the talks and the looks. I mean, you know what happened to Kurt at this school.

Brittany: But honey, if anybody were to ever make fun of you, you would either kick their ass or slash them with your vicious, vicious words.

Santana: Yeah, I know, but I’m so afraid of what everyone will say behind my back. Still, I have to accept that I love you. I love you and I don’t want to be with Sam or Finn or any of those other guys. I just want you. Please say you love me back. Please.

Brittany: Of course, I love you. I do. And I would totally be with you if it weren’t for Artie.

Santana: Artie.

Brittany: I love him too. I don’t wanna to hurt him. That’s not right. I can’t break up with him.

Santana: Yes, you can. He’s just a stupid boy.

Brittany: But it wouldn’t be right, Santana. You have to know if Artie and I were to ever break up, and [if] I’m lucky enough and you’re still single…

Santana: Don’t.

Brittany: I am so yours. Proudly so.

So hot. Right?

They are each other’s best friend and they understand each other better than anyone else do. I love how they are always together, always holding hands, cuddling, glancing at each other with a knowing smile and showing little signs of affection with each other.

Brittany even told Santana that she loves her more than she has loved anyone else in the whole world. And she is a very supportive girlfriend who would always try to help Santana achieve her dreams in her naive, slightly airhead way.

Santana, on her part, would defend Brittany to the hilt whenever anyone tried to criticise or bully her. She also turns gentle whenever they are together. Santana told Brittany that in her sophomore year she would sit at the back of the choir room and secretly watch Brittany. She would count the number of times Brittany smiled at her and died at the days she didn’t. How sweet huh?

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Brittany: Someday, I’m gonna marry Santana.
Santana: *smiles*

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They look so sweet together—a perfect combination of sexy, wild and cute at the same time. And I love how their friends are so supportive of them.
http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=pGVTrtGgAmU&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DpGVTrtGgAmU

I especially love the part when Brittany pulled Santana’s arm out of her jacket, just so she could hold her hand. It just seems so natural and genuine. Swoons.

How incredibly hot if they were to be together IRL?! I might just faint.

Here’s a compilation YouTube video of their best moments together:
http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=UERsZImECTk&feature=fvwrel

Here’s an even better compilation video of the trials and tribulations Santana and Brittany had to go through to be better: http://youtu.be/tSEr4ch4Pi0

Wow, okay, I have to stop now, before my crush for Brittana/Santittany turns obsessive. Then again, there will always be more obsessive fans than me on the Internet. So I’m safe. Hahaha!

Image credits: Santana and Brittany celebrate Valentine’s Day, Santana and Brittany making out and Santana and Brittany share a kiss.

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A golden kiwi a day

I’m always amused when I see a gold kiwifruit. It is shaped like a tear drop, with a protruding neck—which reminds me of a headless kiwi bird—and smooth hairless body, which is totally unlike the green kiwifruit.

According to a New Zealand kiwifruit producer Zespri (the brand of the kiwis that I’m currently eating now), the biggest difference between the green and gold kiwi is taste. “While green kiwifruit has a tangier, more tart flavor, gold kiwifruit is mellow and tropical, a mixture of mango, melon and citrus flavours.”

Well, golden kiwifruits are just fabulous for our health. Based on this long article which I’ve read so you don’t have to, here are a few key points why we should all eat more golden kiwis instead of apples from now on.

According to a 2011 study published in the journal Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin, a Japanese research team examined seven fruits that are known to have high antioxidant content: gold kiwis, green kiwis, navel oranges, mandarin oranges, white grapefruits, ruby grapefruits and apples.

The team wanted to know which fruit had the highest concentration of polyphenols (powerful antioxidants that offset the effects of molecules known as free radicals), which were most effective in reducing lipid oxidation (the process whereby fatty acids are turned into free radicals that damage cells), and which were most effective in eliminating free-ranging hydrogen peroxide (another type of free radical produced as a byproduct of the body’s process to create and use energy at the cellular level).

By reducing the amount of oxidised lipids and the number of other free radicals in blood serum, physicians believe people can significantly reduce their risk of heart disease. A common way to reduce free radicals and oxidised lipids is to consume more antioxidant-rich food such as the aforementioned fruits.

Suffice to say, golden kiwis kicked every fruit’s asses, particularly apple’s.

The researchers found that gold kiwi’s polyphenols content was approximately 1.04mg per ml, green kiwi was second with 0.85mg/ml, navel oranges were third at 0.80mg/ml, while apples were last at 0.13 mg/ml.

As for the antioxidant properties of these polyphenols, the researchers found that both gold kiwi and navel orange inhibited oxidation of 60% of the lipids, with apples again last at 23%.

To further evaluate the antioxidant properties of the fruits, the researchers measured the amount of hydrogen peroxide eliminated by the fruit juices. Guess what? Gold kiwi significantly outperformed the other fruits by eliminating over 60% of the hydrogen peroxide. No other fruit achieved greater than 30% elimination, and apples were last at less than 10%.

The scientific team said: “All these indicators showed the highest activity for gold kiwi, demonstrating that gold kiwi has strong antioxidant effects. Overall, green kiwi had lower antioxidant effects than gold kiwi, but had stronger effects than the other fruits.”

So, if you’d like to add a tasty fruit to your daily diet, try the golden kiwi. It’s more expensive than the regular green ones, sure, but it’s worth all the health benefits and yummy sweetness you’d be getting. I like scooping the tender flesh with a teaspoon after chilling it for a while. Simply delightful.

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Goodbye, Google Reader

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And just like that, Google Reader was gone. I kept refreshing the page throughout 1-2 July, hoping that Google will change its mind and let its Reader carry on its unobtrusive existence in the vast world of Internet apps and software. No such luck, as google conveniently marked all my feeds as gone on the afternoon of 2 July. Thankfully, I had gone to the Takeout page earlier to download an archive of my feeds.

After five years of using Google Reader, I’m not sure how fast I can wean myself off or even forget the easy accessibility and simple functionality of this amazing app. In short, I’m still depressed.

I’ve downloaded Flipboard as a replacement… It’s pretty for sure—very visually appealing, especially if most of your feeds are predominantly images. And it has a wide range of selected (pre-curated as many people are so fond of saying now) websites, which are pretty awesome. Except, well, there will always be an “except”, this means everyone who uses Flipboard will tend to read the same stuff as you, know about the same things as you do and be influenced by the same opinions as you have. Also, it’s not great when I’m taking the train and it goes underground, the reception goes to shit and I can’t update any pages properly—it takes too long for images to load. Sense my frustration already?

I’m also trying out Feedly now, but I am still miffed that something’s lacking. For one, I can’t search for an article I read or saved on Feedly itself. The functionality of its search engine is only applicable for websites I want to subscribe to. I have to manually retrieve any article I want by browsing through all the websites or pages I had marked all as read in order to find that article again. Previously on Google Reader, I could search for any topic I fancy in the search bar and it was no hassle. And whenever I have to click on a link, it loads inside Feedly instead of taking me to the Chrome browser. SIGH.

I’ve downloaded Reeder yesterday. I have yet to try it, but I sure hope there’s some positives out of it. I mean, how can it disappoint me further than I already am. I just want to browse my favourite, regular feeds or add new websites to read without hassle and search for any topics I remember reading about previously with ease. Is that too much too ask for? Evidently, yes.

This article from TechCrunch depicts my sentiment accurately, right down to my very angst and sense of loss.

The rest of the world may “merely surf the web” for any info they want, or look at their tweets or Facebook for the latest news, but I actually prefer to get my news or info from reliable, trusted sources I had carefully curated personally. Looking at my Google Reader in the morning when I wake up, at night before I sleep and whenever I have some free time had become my thing—my solace from the hustle and bustle of the Internet where everyone wants to dictate what you know and how you know it. Google Reader helps me cut out all the distracting white noise and allow me to look at the essentials. Even the writer of this TechCrunch article agrees.

But Google Reader was special because it was one of the last remaining places on the Internet you could really call your own. In every other way, the nature of news reading on the web these days and the social services that now dominate your attention are crafted by others who dictate what you will read and when. Whether browsing through an editorially run news site, parsing your Twitter stream or reading your Facebook news feed, the links before you are those that others have deemed important.
There’s value in this signal, of course — a sense of what’s trending in the larger world allows for serendipitous discovery. But it’s also a relinquishing of control. Oh sure, you can choose who to follow, but it’s not the same as choosing which news sources’ feeds you will subscribe to, why, and how often you will read them.
In Google Reader, I’ve gleefully stuffed websites into collections like “B-List” and “C-List” and “Can’t Miss” and “Panic Button,” instead of more proper names like “top tech sites” or “Apple bloggers.” It’s my decision which headline collections get scanned with a glance, and which writers will see me devouring their every word.
Meanwhile on Twitter, every missive is as important as the one that preceded it. A photo of your cat. News from the war. A beautiful sunset on Instagram. A government overthrown. It’s a real-time firehose of information that you dip into as you can. There’s no unread count. You just refresh and refresh and refresh for more.

Ever since Google’s announcement this spring, many new services have stepped up to help fill the void Google Reader leaves behind, but none will ever fill its shoes. None of those that now vie to become the new incumbent even have search built-in, for example. A few promise “yeah, it’s coming” but too many startups begging for a second look think that merely supporting RSS feeds makes them a Google Reader clone.
Google Reader wasn’t a list of things to read. It wasn’t a collection of RSS feeds.
It was your own, personal Google. A search engine built on top of the sites you cared about. A Google News with the stories you wanted to see. A taxonomy where you chose the labels, and drove the SEO. Google Reader was your web, your slice of the Internet.
Social media, now, is theirs.
Reader’s death isn’t the end of a product, it’s the end of an era. We have protested, bargained, begged, and cried. Now we have to accept and adapt.

Google Reader, thank you for giving me five great years. Goodbye.

P/S: Fifteen days later, I’m still gutted.

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Play well; leg godt

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Play well, my favourite dog form in the whole wide world (and some say the universe or even the galaxy)!

This is the most recent photo I have of you, which is obviously not recent at all since it was sent to me months ago. Maybe you have become chubbier than usual, but your ridiculously well-defined handsome features are still handsome?

You’re approximately three years old now—an adult in human years and still so naughty (or cowardly), I’d bet your mummy would say. But again, it’s just my assumption, because I’ve absolutely no idea if you are keeping well, if your skin has healed, if you’re still sensitive to strangers, if you still hate everyone else but your family and human form *chios*, if you’re still afraid of thunder and loud noises, if you still refuses to go out beyond your house’s corridor…

Well, I miss you so so so so much, my handsome dog form. Seeing your smiley happy face makes my eyes tear for some reason. Sometimes I wonder if you would still recall my face and reminisce what an awesome human form I was. Remember how we were so alike in so many ways that it was incredibly unbelievable? I used to tell your mummy I get how you feel and think, because I am you. Haha.

I wish I was there at your birthday party which is probably filled with lots of presents and treats for you. Haha. I wish you had met Milo (your mummy’s dog form) more often, instead of having Didi the weird sheepdog crash our gathering. I wish I had given you the longest, tightest bear hug ever the last time we met if I had known I would never see you again.

But most of all, my dear Lego Alejandro Lee, I wish for you to be happy and healthy always. *squishes your tiny happy face passionately*

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The best is never too good for you, my beloved dog form. XOXO

P/S: I did a search for you on my blog and guess what? Here are a few posts that I’ve specially wrote for or mentioned you in: Little Lego, Sputnik Dog, Saving The Best, Lego Turns One, Choco Baby. Enjoy.