Friday, September 19, 2003

Friday Five

I’ve officially started my latest attempt at trying to quit smoking as of 8pm tonight. I went though what I hope will be the last cigarette I will ever smoke with little fanfare although they have been a part of my live for nearly 15 years. If I factor in the current inflation rates and the price of a pack of cigarettes today, I would have already spent about RM59,130.00 (USD15,560.50) in cigarettes alone in all those years. That is a lot of money up in smoke. I think I will make a sign up with this figure printed on it and post it somewhere near my bed to remind me how much money I could have saved if I never started smoking to begin with. It would be the first and the last thing that I see every day.

So ... this is day 1 of my quest to be nicotine free. I’m sure that I will start having withdrawal symptoms any minute now. Just hope that this time around I will have more will power to avoid the temptation than the last time I tried. That sorry attempt only lasted about 3 months before I caved in. We’ll see how this one goes. In the meantime ... I’m off to watch the new season of Survivor on TV tonight.

Before I forget (or get too jittery to think straight, whichever comes first), this week’s Friday Five questions are answered below:

1. Who is your favorite singer/musician? Why?
I have a bunch of them that I like but if I could only pick one then I would have to say I’ll pick the Irish boyband, Westlife. I know ... it is corny to like boybands but I count it as one of my OGTs. The 5 members of Westlife are a bunch of energetic, very talented and seriously cute young men. The music that they make can be described as up-beat pop, soulful ballads and whimsical ditties. I’ve been following this group from the very first time they broke into the business and started to make a name for themselves. I’ve watched them grow and mature as performing artiste with each album that they release. It also doesn’t hurt that their Irish accents just makes me weak at the knees and yes ... I perfectly know that I’m being shallow about it.

2. What one singer/musician can you not stand? Why?
I haven’t found anyone that I immediately hate at first listen. Maybe this is because I avoid listening to things that I would expect that I would not like but then this doesn’t stop me from trying them out if the mood hits me. I guess if there was anyone that I came even close to a smidgen of hate; it would have to be The Artiste Formally Known as a Symbol, Prince. I never could listen to his songs without wanting to poke my eardrums with a sharp pencil.

3. If your favorite singer wasn't in the music business, do you think you would still like him/her as a person?
The boys from Westlife? Definitely. I’ve seen them live, up close and personal, before and I really like they way they interact with people even with those who never heard of them. They really project a down to earth persona that can only come from within a person and not something that their PR people teach. I would think that even if they were not in a popular band as they are now, I would like having them around to hang out with.

4. Have you been to any concerts? If yes, who put on the best show?
I’ve been to a few concerts by both local and international performers and I have to say that the ones that I enjoyed most were the Westlife concerts. I’ve been to every concert they’ve done in Malaysia to date and always had a good time.

5. What are your thoughts on downloading free music online vs. purchasing albums? Do you feel the RIAA is right in its pursuit to stop people from downloading free music?
If the music is listed as free by the copyright owner, I don’t see why downloading them is a problem. However, from what I’ve read about the RIAA issue, they are going after people who infringe on copyright laws by downloading and sharing music/songs which are not being given away for free. In away, this is within their prerogative to ask people to stop unauthorized downloading and sharing of copyrighted material.

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