Thursday, December 29, 2005

A Chorus Line Poster

Here'e the poster I designed and illustrated for A Chorus Line presented by the Jewish Community Center that's coming up in a few weeks. The posters are printed and delivered today and I can't wait to see them. Next in line is Angels in America.

Continuing Conversations: A Collaborative Painting Effort between Subashini Nadarajah and Michael Ong

Artist Statement
It takes chemistry, understanding, courage, selflessness, total faith and respect for two artists to share a canvas and come up with one final work of art. Obviously, that's the kind of relationship we have. Being best friends for 16 years, our careers and lives thrive on each other's inspirations, ideas, criticisms and encouragements.
The works in this show evoke memories of our friendship over the years and the many spontaneous conversations that we've shared...both happy and sad. This collection of twelve paintings is, in essence, a visual dialogue between the two of us.
In the making of these paintings, we would start a canvas, then send it on for the other to continue, without discussing what should be done next. We were often surprised by how far we pushed each other's envelopes. In the end, we both came to the realization that two in-sync creative minds are better than one. This is our first collaborative painting show, but it definitely won't be our last. After all, we enjoy our continued conversations.

Here's the complete collection of the 12 paintings of the show.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Christmas Dinner at Will's

This year's Christmas Dinner was at Will's again. Naeem, David, Suba, Eric and I were invited and each of us brought a side dish, and Will roasted a delicious chicken. He was so proud of his accomplishment we had to take a picture to show his mom. As usual, his apartment was beautifully decorated, and the table settings were simply divine. After dinner, we opened gifts and watch Margaret Cho's new show: Assassin. An evening of food, friends, gifts, and laughter in a gorgeous environment...we couldn't have asked for anything better. But wait! There's more. Producers opened that day and we all went to see it after dinner. Cho and the Producers back to back in a night...not a good idea. I had a sore throat the next morning for laughing hysterically all night long.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Feature Painting SOLD!

Suba and my Art Show opens this evening at the Crossroads at 6pm. We are both so excited because one of our paintings that was picked by the gallery owner to be hung on the feature wall is already sold. The title of the painting is called "Matinee". I hope this is a good sign for a sell out show!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Rent: Broadway vs Hollywood

Went to see an advance screening of Rent last night with Will. The theater was filled with fans and for a moment, I was worried that it would turn out to be a sing-along movie night. Apart from a big applause at the first big reveal of Angel in full drag, most people were respectful enough to wait until the closing credit for their own Karaoke moment. I'm not going to write a big review of the film because I'm sure there are way too many our there. However, I can't help but wonder if the effectiveness of the movie is totally based how well the film is made or because most of us are already so familiar with it and that our tear ducts automatically cued to work on certain scenes? The film stays very true to the Broadway version. Even the costumes are recognizably similar if not identical. Seasons of Love got moved up as the opening credit, and the hot, hot, hot track, Contact, was left out. I wonder if they're saving it for the "uncut" version on the DVD version? Anyhow, even though I totally expected that this is a musical, it still took me a few minutes to adjust myself to the "musical" mode. Tango: Muarine was my favorite in the movie. It was what I hoped each song is going to be for the film but the rest are pretty much the Broadway performance on film, with close-ups. Nevertheless, I still shed a tear and sing-a-long at the closing credit.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Revolution Tee

If you haven't checked out our recently launched, website , here's a peek of our launch t-shirt, entitled "The Revolution Tee". There are more exciting and fun items on the way! Shop, shop and shop!

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Podcasters Unite!

Podcasters Unite!, originally uploaded by michaelongline. is officially launched today. My brother and I started a new company that sells podcast related merchandise online. Most of the stuff sold out there are rather geeky. We felt the need to elevate the quality of the design both the graphic and the apparel. We have already shipped out a batch of promo t-shirts to a network of podcasters last weekend. We hope that they will get a first hand experience of the superior quality of our product and start passing the word around. So far, we only started with one design, and there are a few already been designed and are in production now. Please check out the site and order up a few t-shirts for yourself and as holiday gifts!

Art Show in December

Art Show in December, originally uploaded by michaelongline.

Here's the unofficial invitation we sent out to some friends yesterday. The show is called "Continuing Conversations". Suba and I have been doing joint shows since we were in college. This time it will be in a form of collaborative painting. Either of us start a painting and the other person end it, or we may go back and forth, just like a conversation. Just like best friends, it takes a lot of trusts to hand over something so personal and let the other person continue working on it, without any direction. It is a very exciting process and I hope people will feel the same excitement when the show opens in December 2, 2005.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Carriage Ride

Carriage Ride, It's me riding a horse carriage back to my house from a party. Behind me is Cinderella's humble abode. Originally uploaded by michaelongline.

Typically, riding on a horse carriage, especially in this part of the country is no big deal. However, riding it back to my house from a party is rather rare. Come to think of it, isn't it kind of like Cinderella? I live in a historic neighborhood and many people are very proud of their homes. A neighbor of mind threw a 100th Birthday party for his house. The event was rather elaborate. He even hired actors to play the previous owners, in period costumes! Of course, a big mansion with a carriage house is incomplete without a real horse carriage. Thanks to Eric for tipping the Cowboy and "Mike" 5 bucks. Pretty generous for a one-block ride.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

My New iPuppy

My New iPuppy, originally uploaded by michaelongline.

I finally got myself a puppy! I've been wanting to have a dog for many years but since I live by myself and I'm at the office for at least 10 hours a day, it seems like it too cruel to leave the dog alone for such a long period of time. (That is if it can hold for that long not to potty in the house.) A coworker of my is very allergic to animal, so bringing my dog to work is out of the question, even though my boss doesn't mind us bring our dogs to work.
Then I found the perfect dog. All I need to feed him is music! It reacts to music and dances to the beat. Best of all, it doesn't pee nor poop. Isn't it fabulous! Apparently, it has moods and needs attention sometimes. And it barks occasionally. How cute. Of course, it is totally stylish because it matches my iPod and my iMac G5.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Lights On!

The preview of the illuminated Bloch Building, taken from the East side of the museum, photographed by michaelongline.

Lights on over the new reflecting pool, photographed by michaelongline.

I drove by the Nelson-Atkins Museum this evening and still under-construction addition of the museum was illuminated from within. The new wing built by architect Steven Holl is scheduled to open in 2007, but it has stirred up quite a controversy in the city because most people think it doesn't appear to be the same as what's been promised. I think the light was turned on to allow people to experience the luminosity of the structure at night. What's shown here is one of the five glass skin structures situated at the north end of the campus. Being a great fan of the museum, I am very excited about the project from the beginning and is looking forward to the completion of the addition so I can totally experience the architecture inside and around it. Therefore I shall refrain myself from commenting on the architecture until it's open to the public. As for now, I'll just enjoy the little preview of surprise light show by the museum.

Friday, July 29, 2005

Deep Thoughts on My Birthday

I often find it interesting that human being are so drawn to the concept of time, which is related to the change of the position of the moon and stars, and the seasons and the tides. Somehow, we feel like we have the need to count the repetitious occurrences that surround, including our our age. Has it anything to do with the fact that we use it as a marking to valid ourselves to behave certain way according to social norms, or perhaps to acknowledge the inevitable aging process in our lives and the survival of another 365 days? I don't intend to demean the essence of birthdays, but somehow, it is just another many markings we carve on a pole that may or may not mean anything certain people. I like to see birthday as a reminder, just like a photo reminds you of a certain love ones. Birthdays remind me of looking back and evaluate the past 12 months, and then making goals for the coming year, very much like most people do on New Year's Day. As the marks on the pole is getting higher each year, it certainly feels like I'm making them much quicker then before. I used to remember that when I was a little child, I had to wait forever for Christmas to come around. Now, I often catch myself asking, "that was 3 years ago?!" So, why is time flying by so fast? Most people say when you're having a good time, time flies. That doesn't mean that I had a terrible childhood. I just think now I have a lot more going on in my life than ever. I have more responsibilities, obligations and stress. I also have more friends and more people that I really care for that I need to spend time with. These makes the slices of a pie much smaller; which means each bite is even more precious to me than before. I guess if I were to look back and evaluate my pass, I realized how blessed I am for being able to share my slice of my pie with my friends, my family and my lover. And yet I still have enough leftover for myself. I cherished every moment when I'm with them, and I strived to make each moment a pleasant experience for everyone. My birthday wish is to have many more of these wonderful moments ahead of me so I could share it with my love ones. It is hard to live halfway across the globe from my family and friends. I only get so many days in every other year to see them. However, just like anything else, the experience is more precious when it is so rare that we get to see each other anymore. Everything else in life is material. Relationships are the true essence of happiness in life.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

My Favorite Vacation Picture

This one of my favorite pictures I took when I visited Singapore during my Southeast Asia trip this summer. It is the very icon of Singapore -- the Merlion.

Birthday Poem from Joshua

Here's a poem that my best friend Joshua e-mailed me. Sounds like a suck-up poem to me. The last Friday of July 2005 is the birthday of a very big hunk, You would be sadly mistaken to EVER call this guy a punk. When he walks in - you'd think a movie star just entered the room. You'd think someone so good-looking would have a few flaws, But his artistic talents again put me in awe. His job entails much skill with generating ideas and being creative How wonderful to get paid to do something you like. So adept in art and design even Wong-Kar-Wei would be impressed, Such talent, such charm, what more can I stress? He's so kindhearted and likeable; cool, calm, collected demeanor, what more can I say? But Best Wishes to Michael-Ong-Chee-Heng and Happy Birthday!

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Greetings -- Malaysian Style

Eric and I arrived in Penang from Kansas City on June 6, 2005, after 36 hours of flying and waiting at four airports in three countries. The journey was rather smooth (except a few screaming kids in the plane, which I'm cursed to be stuck with them whenever I fly), and the stay is very nice except it's hard getting use to the hot tropical weather. Even though I was born and raised here for over twenty years, it is always hard for me to adjust to the hot and humid climate whenever I come home to visit. So far, we've been greeted by family and friends with a very typical Malaysia tradition -- food, food and more food. We've been here for only three days, but I feel like we've eaten more than 30 meals! Now I know why one of the few things I missed living in the US is food from home. It is such a big part of our daily life here. It is very common to extend a meal from one restaurant to the other, a progressive meal, all impromptu. I wonder if our seats are wide enough for us when it's time for us to fly back to the US.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Stealing Beauty

Stealing Beauty

I stole my neighbors beautiful peonies yesterday while I was outside working on my yard. I figured since I have to look at her ugly house and her yard that has never been taken care of all the time, I deserve something beautiful to look at. Moreover, a big storm was heading this way, and I know the flowers would be damaged by the heavy rain anyway. I'm now enjoying the arrangement on my night stand and the subtle sweet fragrant fills the room. I guess I'm not as upset with my neighbor anymore for of her unsightly yard. I just wish she has a weekly supply of fresh flowers in her yard for me to steal.

Saturday, April 23, 2005

My South Park Portrait

My South Park Portrait

Thanks to my dear friend Suba who pointed me to this fun yet absolutely senseless site where you could generate a character a la South Park from various preset elements literally from head to toe, I am pretty happy with the outcome. I think my trademark man-bag totally nailed it. Have fun making your own South Park portrait at the South Park Studio.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Prom Horror Stories

Today, a string of e-mail among my friends regarding dinner plans for this weekend has somehow evolved into a prom horror story exchange. Having not growing up here in the US, the idea of going to the prom is fascinating, yet intimidating. I certainly don't have any of my own story to share but here are some of my friends' from today's e-mail: "...except there won't be a jug of cheap wine in the trunk that we can drink later on at some park so that we can go "all the way". That was the horror of my senior prom. Susie Schultz (fat blond) and I were up for prom king and queen. She had a peach dress on with white roses. I had a white tux with peach boutonniere. She had a jug of wine and had plans for us after the prom. I had to do some pretty quick side-stepping and fast-talking to get out of that one!!! Whew! barely made it out alive. Never did bang her, thank God!" "...Well at least your date didn't leave the prom with her ex-boyfriend because she (at least) knew he was good for some back seat sex. So I had to drive around in my powder blue tux until midnight pretending like I hadn't been dumped. By next school day, it had gotten out and I was the butt of jokes for a week. Gee, thanks Will for dragging up my favorite high school memories!!" "...Well, since we're talking about Prom memories, my date had the nerve to wear a red polyester number with blatantly cheap white shoes from JCPenney after she told me she was wearing a stunning black and white ensemble. My corsage and boutonniere were specially dyed to be black and white and she threw off my color palette for the entire evening. I think my expression said it all when she descended the stairs. I was so embarrassed that I actually didn't want to have my picture taken for posterity because of the fashion faux pas. After all, the evening was all about me- she was just along for the ride. The nerve of that girl."

Friday, March 11, 2005


I am happy that last night, one side of my CK sock finally reunited with the other after several months of separation. I guess most of us often under estimate how much the littlest things bring joy to our lives.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

High-tech Rooster

Yesterday was Chinese New Year. This year is the year of the Rooster. Over here in the US was just like any other day. Well, it fell on Ash Wednesday, actually. The traditional New Year greetings was done the high-tech way over the Internet across 14 time-zones. My mom and I "cammed" for a little while and then we all got into this 4-way conferencing using Skype among my brother, my sister, my parents and I, from four separate addresses in two different continents. It was the first year we greeted each other online instead of over a long distance phone call. If only we could receive "ang pow" (red envelope filled with cash given to children and singles) as an attachment from e-mail, it would have been even cooler. The best part was: my tech-savvy brother taped the whole conferencing as his Podcast show, so the rest of the world will have the opportunity to subscribe to it. Who would have thought that today, we are living in a sci-fi world, having audio-visual communication across the oceans in real time, which costs us almost next to nothing compared to just 15 years ago, when air mail took two weeks to arrive, and making international phone call was a luxury. We are living in an amazing era.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

In My Mother's Eyes

This is a beautiful and moving song from the Heartland Men's Chorus Spring concert. I just want to have it on my blog and share it with everyone. Tenderly she held me as a child upon her knee. She would rock away the nightmares that startled me from sleep. She would wipe the tears of my fears away, and whisper, "there's no need to cry." And I knew what she said was true, for truth shined in her eyes. Tenderly she held me still as I became a man. Never was her lap too small or comfortless her hand. And through the years there has been no doubt of the value of my life... And I heard every loving word, for I was worthy in her eyes. In my mother's eyes, laughter danced like starlight. In my mother's eyes, courage never faltered. In her eyes, oh how I could find such peace of mind. In her eyes, I realized all I could be. In my mother's eyes, the gift of love was granted. In my mother's eyes, my dignity was planted. In her eyes, all of my dreaming seemed possible. In her eyes, I realized all I could be. Tenderly I hold her now, old and frail become. Never was a mother's love as her love for this son. And when the time has finally come that we must say goodbye... I pray she sees the love in me that I found in my mother's eyes. Music by Robert Seeley Words by Robert Espindola

Friday, February 04, 2005

Time Warp

I went to bed on January 15th and I woke up this morning and it's February 4th! What happened? Was I in a coma, or was I being abducted by the Martians? Or is Bobby Ewing still in the shower?! Actually, there's no creative way to write about a come back after a blog hiatus. There were certainly many bloggable subjects occurred, but I was simply too lazy to write it down in words. And then I started planning on what to write about not writing and I just kept procrastinating because I simply couldn't figure out something interesting to talk about. So, there you go. I was lazy. Or perhaps I was having a blogger's block? But I'm back. Let's hope that this time it will last longer than the 5th season of Sex and the City.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Cell Phone Withdrawal

I went to work yesterday without my cell phone. Of course, I thought I had it in my bag the whole time until when I was about to leave my office that I realized it was no where to be found. I thought it was in my car and even went back to my office again to look for it again after I left. My mind began to track back where I had been the whole day, and I wasn't sure if I had left it at the Taj Mahal where I had lunch. I had already planned on meeting Will and Naeem for dinner and a movie later, so I didn't have time to go home to look for my phone. The whole time I felt really uneasy because I was worried that plans might have been changed, and I was not informed. I was worried that Eric might call to let me know he's going to join us and couldn't get ahold of me. My mind was just wandering in all directions that things might have changed and I was the last one to know about it. I was the same guy, whom a few years ago thought I really don't have the use of a mobile phone. The reason that I got it is that it just looked cool to have a cell phone as an accessory for your ensemble. Who would know that I would become addicted to my phone, that I have lost all trusts in my friends, that any appointments that we made verbally or through e-mail can be easily vetoed by just a phone call. My phone may very well not ring at all, but by just having it on me makes me feel like I'm secured and I have the right to be running a few minutes late, or change my mind on a restaurant or movie time... I was glad to see my phone sitting there at home when I first walked in after the movie. There was five unanswered calls: one from Eric telling me about his evening plan; one from Will asking if the restaurant was the right one because he was the only one on time; one from Jeff asking me last minute if I would like to join their trip to St Louis for the weekend; and two other calls from me tracking down my phone. Well, I guess I am not the only one who depend on my cell phone to make last minute plans or changes. I did get a few calls while my phone is sitting in my house. Almost all my friends has cell phones nowadays, and I bet almost all of them feel the same way if they leave home without their phones.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Queer Eye Gone Queerer

I frowned when I first saw the promo for "Queer Eye for the Straight Girl," but I thought I'll hold my judgment until at least after I watch an episode. True enough, this supposedly sister show hosted by the "Gal Pals" was just too hard for me to swallow. The whole concept of "Queer Eye for the Straight Guys" is to allow gay men who are (generally speaking) more in tuned with their feminine side to teach straight men a few tips to achieve the balance of their yin and yang. Women in general find gay men attractive because of their sensitivity to their feminine side. Metrosexual is IN and that's why the show is popular. Men want to learn a few tips to win women's hearts and women want to believe that their men can be buffed and polished into the Metro they've been dreaming of. As for "Girl", what is the point of the show? If it's just a make-over show, why bother making it into a Queer Eye spin-off. Isn't all male stylists and pros of every make-over show queer anyway? No offense, but isn't it totally queer to ask a lesbian about tips on how to be a lady?! Well, believe me. Her title is " Honey, the Lady"! Apparently her full name is Honey Labrador. What's with that? A pet name? I don't care if she modeled before in her past life or conditions her hair every time she shampoos. She was all giddy as soon as she put on a tool belt and had a power tool in her hands in the first episode. Maybe the other Gal Pals should seek advise from her on how to be a butch construction worker. So, what's the appeal of this show? Will straight men want to see any show that has less than two lesbians in it? Will straight girls be excited over learning the exfoliating tips from a lesbian, who's know as "The Lady"? Will gay men want to see a Cinderella story without the bitchy stepmother? And most of all, will the lesbians want to see a show that obviously added a token lesbian just so Bravo can broaden its viewership? Or, perhaps they're trying to be inclusive. I wonder what's next.

Thursday, January 06, 2005

My Time Capsule

My Time Capsule

This was my first car.
My parents got me a used 1969 Fiat 850 as soon as I got my driver's license when I turned 18. I had it painted a bright school bus yellow just to make a loud statement since it was almost as old as I am. My school mates all nicknamed it -- "Porsche".
I had many memorable times, not so much on the performance of the car but the experience of riding with many friends in the short few years that I owned it. The stories and gossips that we exchanged, the fights between friends, and the crazy "big squeeze" of 11 guys to avoid walking in the rain between school buildings, the rides of my teacher because he's too afraid to drive, ran out of gas on the road that cut across a cemetery, broke down halfway in the middle of rush hour traffic, smoke came out from the engine due to over heating while climbing up a steep hill, my sister got stuck somewhere because she could not figure out how to put the gear into reverse... the stories go on and on. In a way, even though it is a funny looking old car, it is a time capsule that instantly transports me back to my wonderful teenage years. I miss my first car.

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

My Big Fat Blog

I've created another blog called "My Big Fat Blog" so I can keep track of the progress of my resolution for this year, to lose weight and look fabulous by this summer in time for my trip home to Malaysia. The blog is mainly for my own record so I can refer back to my goal if I ever go off course. Perhaps this will boost my motivation if I feel like I'm being "watched", even though I really don't think anyone is going to see the blog.

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Welcome 2005

It has been a rather somber holiday week between Christmas and New Year. Having growing up in South East Asia, it is very hard for me to see such a disastrous event that swept away so many lives and left behind the unspeakable griefs for the survivors. It is hard to even greet people Happy New Year when there are millions of people who are homeless and have lost their love ones taken by the tsunami. I lit a candle for world peace as I welcome the new year. I wished that those who survived will have the strength to move on. This morning when I walked into my kitchen, I noticed that the first bud of my white orchid has bloomed. I took it as a sign of hope, a sign of new life, and that life goes on.