Friday, May 7, 2010

I am not blogging from here anymore. Pls visit my website http://www.jojostruys.com/ for all my latest updates. Thanks

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Frightening stats!

I was at the PT Foundation yesterday because I'm gathering research for a story I'm working on at the moment.

I will definitely share the full version of this story with you once I've completed it but I wanted to at least mention this.

Yesterday, I interviewed someone who was living with HIV. He looked perfectly normal by the way, which goes to show you can't assume you're alright just because you look it.

It was an eye opener how he valued life so much more now than before he found out he was HIV positive. He didn't take life for granted. Every day was precious because it meant he was alive. It reminded me of the saying "live every day like it's your last" but how many of us are doing it?

We get so caught up with minor matters when in the big picture, we ought to be grateful we're alive and well!
Jojo Struys
Live The Moment
W:www.kyanite.tv W:www.jojostruys.com

Friday, April 9, 2010

Launching Project Alpha Season 2




When I watched the Project Alpha Season 2 trailer on the big screen at Curve Cineplex, I was on the edge of my seat. It's not because I couldn't wait to see it. I've seen it a million times in the edit suite combing over fine details with the director down to font size, audio levels, logos timed to sound effects (then choosing which ones went best with the words). You get the gist. It's amazing how long it took to just put these few minutes together! 



So needless to say I was on the edge of my seat because I was hoping it would go smoothly. All those endless hours and hours including graveyard shifts with our editors at kyanite.tv has finally gone public. Yikes!!! I'm used to sitting with 2 or 3 other people watching the trailer, not an entire cinema hall viewing it on the big screen. Wow! I know Shaolintiger thought it was kinda bizarre watching himself on the silver screen. Everyone's face was larger than life! KY was asking me before the trailer whether the HD cameras picked up on his zits haha. I don't know what part of the trailer you'll like the most. Some like the football section, some like the travel aspect, some like Cheesie screaming her head off ;) 

At the bloggers launch at night, Ninie was practically standing on her head again. I wonder if she does yoga in her sleep! I honestly wouldn't be surprised ;) Klubbkidd showed up with his new purple hair do but in the trailer it's shocking red. Dude, how often do you dye your hair! 



I have to say that a lot of people in the audience burst out laughing when Azwan Ali exploded on to the screen! He totally cracks me up. Amazing camera presence. Niki Cheong told me via twitter to "make sure he looks good" which wasn't hard :) You'll have to wait and see for yourself Niki. The London eps look awesome! 

We have SO much more to go but this sneak preview is the very first official trailer of Season 2. We wanted you guys to have a taste of what Project Alpha Season 2 was all about but we didn't wanna give too much away. If there was a mantra we tried to stick to, it would be "Less is more" so if you have a few mins to spare, pretty please check the trailer out and tell me what you think. I would really appreciate it! It took so much work to get to this point and we are still flat out in editing the rest of the eps. It's 430am right now and you guessed it! I'm editing right now! :)

Project Alpha airs 19th April and is brought to you by Adidas Action 3. Our official broadband provider is P1 Wimax and the official Airline is MAS. For more info on the show, you could hop on to www.projectalpha.com.my :) 


Saturday, March 27, 2010

As you get older...


When you're a teenager, you wanna be older so that you can be legal, drive a car, be more of an adult. I remember trying to negotiate a curfew with my Mum when I was about 21. I said "1am is just TOO EARLY Mum! Sometimes, people start going out to party as late as 11pm you know!"

Nowadays, I hardly go out unless work brings me to a launch because I'm all partied out and I'm quite happy to unwind at home in the evenings, walk my dogs round the lake or catch a movie. We go through different phases and growing up changes your ideas about what you think is fun. What's important to you may also change in time from the toys you used to love, to the lessons you used to take to the sports you used to play. Even partners change over the years as you change.

Another thing that's different is I find myself thanking people who think I'm much younger than I really am. That's when you know ur getting old! Haha. Just yesterday while I was shooting a magazine spread, the make up artist was putting on the fake lashes for me asked if I was 22? (dunno if you guys know I'm over 30 shhh! ;)

Seriously though, there are advantages about getting older. You simply gather so much more experience along the way doing whatever you do.

I have a friend who's born in the year of the Tiger. He was standing in front of a Tiger statue or decoration 12 years ago thinking to himself "The next time I see this tiger, I'll be 36! I'll probably be married by then. Might even have kids, Wow"


The crazy thing is he just saw it again this year and he remembered what he was thinking the last time he saw the Tiger symbol and it depressed him. OMG, he was 36 already? Not that it's an issue but he's still single and wondering how a dozen years could have just gone by so quickly. As time goes by, we wonder if we're on the right track. We reflect about whether we're happy. We feel the passage of time, subtly but surely.

Age is something we can't change. It's like death. It's a certainty, a fact of life so it's important to "live the moment" because it's so precious. Get out there and do whatever makes you happy! Especially before you see your own chinese zodiac come by again! :)

Friday, March 19, 2010

Scams. Been there, done that!





On my first modeling trip to KL, I remember the door bell ringing and seeing these really sweet, innocent looking girls standing on my doorstep. They said they were doing some scratch and win contest and were so enthusiastic about it, I found myself being lulled along. They told me to simply choose an envelope and scratch off the silver so I figured why not? Turns out, I won something for my kitchen, on the spot and one of the girls went downstairs to get it. Everything seemed in order. It was in a box, all brand new. I was really surprised. Looking back, this is such a good strategy because everyone is in a good mood and it seemed so easy. What made it doubly harder for me to mistrust them is that they seemed like really nice girls.They were probably students working for this company part time because they looked no more than 20. They let me in to a little secret (which made me think they're on my side). They said almost all the prizes were already won because they were already at the end of their contest period but no one had won the grand prize yet which was a car. They had a photo of their prizes in a professional looking folder, the works. Turns out, they had only 2 envelopes left and one of them had the car as a prize in it. The chances of winning were 50/50 but it was a CAR, not a frying pan, know what I mean?



They said to be eligible for the contest, one had to spend a minumum of RM1, 200 or something like that to enter it. They had a folder of tonnes of household and electrical items to choose from. I had just moved to Malaysia (this was ages ago) and I didn't even have a microwave oven so I decided to buy one for the house and a simple water filter. After that, I scratched the metal boxes but this time, I won nothing. I later found out they tell everyone the same thing so the last 2 envelopes were probably identical so that no one would ever win. The only saving grace was the microwave oven did come in handy but was probably sold to me at an inflated price since it was a brand I've never heard of. 



What made me think of this, is just today, I got a call from what I thought was Air Asia saying I had won a holiday for 4 pax and to please come and collect it. The only catch being that they wanted to have 20 mins of your time showing you how to use the website for bookings and to educate consumers on what panel of hotels they are associated with in different countries. Seemed fair enough for a free holiday but I thought it might be a scam so I decided not to go. Last moment, I had an hour to spare so I went down there with my business partner who was convinced it was all bullsh*t. We decided to go anyway. Curiosity killed the cat, sort of thing. We figured it might be a time share scam. 

Gosh, it was nothing we expected. It was a company that's selling skincare and supplements huh? So then we thought it must be multi level but it wasn't. Not really. It was a company building their own pharmacy chain (so they claim) but they hadn't built the first outlet yet. They wanted people to invest in it so that everyone would have a share of all items sold to their members. It was laced with a million loopholes but they were trying to build their member base, get you to recruit others for them etc etc. They were selling hope to people who may have been swayed by the attractive renumeration of what you would get back but that's all air talk. Eg, if someone bought RM150 worth of make up in their store (they didn't even specify a make up brand can u believe it?) the investor would get back RM50 and they estimate at least 100 people through the door per day BUT they may as well be selling air because the thing wasn't even built (though they spoke of a nation wide chain to come). 



Plus, it wasn't even Air Asia (there were no flights) but the prize was a 2 night stay in either Bali or Thailand from aaasia (so on the phone it sounded like the airline). My business partner told these people that what they were doing wasn't right because they were soliciting calls to get people to come and see them pretending to be something else on a totally different premise. He said point blank to the lady trying to sell her scheme to us, who in their right mind would go for such a sham? We were already going to leave but they produced the free holiday voucher as promised for a 2 night stay in Thailand at a hotel but we decided not to take it because I didn't want to write any of my details down. I didn't want to feed their rotten database. If everything had a catch, who's to say the holiday wouldn't have one as well.

I was not upset though. We expected the worst so we weren't disappointed. We went with our eyes wide open so we were prepared. My first story though caught me by surprise because of the faces of those smiling girls in the doorway who looked like they were on a school assignment. They deceived me when I thought they were just innocent students. It was a tactic and it worked because my guard came down because they lied so smoothly about their contest. With all things though, I try to look at the glass half full rather than half empty. I got a microwave oven out of it and experience I cannot buy. Sometimes, it takes a scam to know a scam so if you're burnt once, just move on but don't get burnt again la! ;)       

Friday, March 12, 2010

Any regrets?




I think regrets are one of the WORST feelings to be weighed down by. The very word implies a past event that has already happened but you are STILL thinking about it yet unable to change a thing about it coz we can never change the past. Since there's NOTHING you can do about it, what's the point of harboring regrets? We can only decide whether we wanna repeat our actions. 



So if you're regretting something you said or did, it's best not to dwell on it. Living in the past can be a dark place to hang out if you're filled with regret. It's more important to learn the lesson so to speak and just move on. If you've made a mistake, don't beat yourself up over it. We all make mistakes! Even what seemed like a HUGE problem in the past from bad grades or being caught by your parents for being super naughty, seems to be things we might even laugh at today.

Time has a funny way of healing wounds and it moves so swiftly. Every second ticking by signifies the passage of time and what amazes and almost scares me is how it will never be the exact same time again when you glance at your watch. Moment to moment, the present keeps changing. It's easier said than done following my own blog mantra "live the moment" but when you think about it, that's all we have right here, right now. It's always THIS moment! so don't look back or too far forward. The moment is right under your nose! :)

Friday, March 5, 2010

Do you drink too much?


I have a freind who's drinking was out of control and he kept saying he was going to cut down but once he was out with the guys, it was game over. He couldn't stop at a safe amount. It was as though the first drink triggered the craving for more, and then more. It was hurting his health, his relationships, his bank account and his ability to focus. He really didn't feel good about himself. Especially the next day. All those calls to ask if he embarassed himself and how he managed to get home? His friends were getting tired of making excuses for him when he was over the limit. His girlfriend felt more like a mother to him and she was at the end of her rope in the relationship. When he was sober, he knew with crystal clarity what he had to do but it seemed too difficult to face his fears head on. Drinking was the easy way out. It was an escape from the shit he didn't wanna deal with dating back to his childhood resentment of his father but how long and how far can you run from dealing with the skeletons in your closet?

As usual, you can never change anyone, only yourself. For eg, you can never quit smoking for anyone. It's the same with drinking. An alcoholic must WANT to make the change for themselves. The people around the alcoholic seem to suffer the most watching them throw their lives away. Actually, there was a really good movie about this starring Meg Ryan and Andy Garcia. She played the alcoholic. I watched this ages ago. It was an unusual role for Meg Ryan to take on (not her usual American sweetheart stereotype) She was quite an emotional mess in this movie and you feel for her character, especially the husband and kids. Actually, if you have an addictive personality, Leaving Las Vegas is another good one to catch with Nicholas Cage about a suicidal alcoholic. Bear in mind, a movie can trigger off awareness but with no guarantees that someone REALLY wants to change. It takes courage to quit any addiction.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Significance of colours




I've always wondered why people say "green with envy" why this colour? When I think of green, I think of plants, not jealousy ;) 

Colours are interesting because they reflect different moods and they convey a variety of messages, some subliminal, some blatant in countless situations. Companies use certain brand colours to stand out from their competitors. 



On an F1 track where the cars are whizzing by furiously, colour plays an important role for the sponsors as well as the spectators.  The same applies on a football field...everyone's looking out for the colours of the teams they're supporting. 



Identities of countries can be spotted from the colours of their flags. 



Red is associated with danger, anger, love and passion in the West but in China it's good luck and prosperity (brides wear red) and in India it represents purity. Religions are also associated with colours. 


For instance, Islam is traditionally associated with green, Judaism with yellow but in Hinduism, many of the Gods are blue in colour. Lord Vishnu's divine powers manifested themselves through his numerous avatars in the shape of a human being, animal or human-animal combined form, possessing great, and sometimes supernatural powers. All these avatars of Vishnu appeared in the world to correct some great evil or to effect good on Earth. 

 

In Thailand, purple is the colour for mourning but in Western cultures it represents royalty, luxury, intuition, even magic. In the West, people wear black to funerals as a colour for mourning but in Japan, it is a colour of honour.



Black is an interesting colour fashion wise. It represents power and authority which is why so many business suits are in no-nonsense black. Even in martial arts, the black belt is the highest achievement one strives for. 

SO WHAT'S YOUR COLOUR? ANY FAVOURITES? Well, here's a list of positive and negative qualities for those of you who like to wear....

RED: impulsive, center of attention, ambitious, like to be the best you can be, passionate, expressive, irritable when you don't get your way, strong leader.

PINK: childlike in behaviour, affectionate, loving, a need to feel loved and accepted (some prisons use pink tones to neutralize disorder and violence)

BROWN: down to earth, reliable, approachable, conventional, neutral

PURPLE: intuitive, spiritual, drawn to magic and mystery, artistic, imaginative, arrogant

GRAY: practical, conservative, lonely, responsible, dependable, critical

BLUE: calming, relaxing (many baby rooms use blue for a soothing effect), sensitive, inspiration and communication, can be depressed, appreciates tranquility 

ORANGE: warm, energetic, enthusiastic, creative, restless, competitive...

GREEN: natural, environment, health, fertile, balance, healing, peaceful, jealousy, envy... 

BLACK: wealth, mystery, fear, the unknown, evil, anonymity, power, sophistication, elegance, creativity...  

YELLOW: Happy, optimistic, stimulating, lively, gets attention, can be overpowering (yellow rose for friendship)

WHITE: purity, innocence, cleanliness, simple, humble, divine, angelic, loner, spiritual...

So do you have a favourite colour? Bear in mind that you may be drawn to certain colours at certain times eg, a guilty person who feels 'dirty' about their actions may want to wear white to feel purified. A conservative person who usually wears gray or beige may feel self conscious in red because it's such a loud colour but it would be perfect for stepping out of one's comfort zones. Be aware of the clothes you pick out of your wardrobe and see if it reflects your mood!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

I'm not wearing 5 layers anymore! :)

  
What I love about traveling is it transports you to a different world from the one you know every single time and it does this so effortlessly because everything which seems so normal to everyone in their own backyard may be a competely novel experience to what we're used to from street signs to different language accents, unusual buildings and the way people dress.

When I was in England these last few weeks filming Project Alpha (and then staying on for a much needed break) I totally marvelled at seeing snow because I hadn't really seen any in more than 20 years. I loved how it covered the rooftops and city streets reminding me of Xmas. I didn't mind wearing gloves and hats because I was just a visitor passing through enjoying all these differences but now that I'm back in KL, I'm actually appreciating all the tiniest of things I've taken for granted like wearing open toe shoes or a pair of high heels which would've been totally impractical in the freezing cold. 
I remember opening my cupboard thinking "wow, I could wear whatever I wanted to in this heat, even a short skirt and not freeze to death!" lol It's been nice being able to wear slippers and leave my house in a t shirt...all these ridiculously simple things we don't think twice about because we take our tropical weather for granted. In fact, the moment I returned, people were lamenting on how crazy hot it's been in KL and I bet I'll be complaining about the heat anytime soon too but for now, I'm loving it! So much warmth after so much cold is a nice change!


That's the trick, I think. If you're not feeling happy about your current situation (and I'm not talking about weather) or you're experiencing boredom in your everyday life, take yourself out of the situation, even if it's just for a few days. Sometimes seeing everything with a new pair of eyes makes you return with a different perspective. For me, a holiday changes my environment enough to slow down the usual pace of my life and helps me stop and smell the roses so to speak so I tend to appreciate everything more, no matter how small :) 

Thursday, February 11, 2010

London Part 3





I decided to stay on in England after filming Project Alpha (since I was already out here n wanted to visit my friends) and I found it amusing how so many locals were apologising about the weather as if the cold was all their fault but the truth is, I was fascinated when I saw the streets lined with white. Wow, when I went to sleep, the grass was still green but everything became white overnight.
video
I can't remember the last time I actually saw snow. It was maybe 25 years ago when I was a small kid so this was an experience. One moment, I was walking down the street in Kent feeling the biting cold and another moment, it suddenly started pelting down. I was almost shocked coz it reminded me of confetti but it was REAL snow falling out of the sky. See the video coz I managed to capture it off my camera! brr it was about minus 6 degrees. 

I kept thinking of my freezer in KL coz it was like walking around at that same temperature. Actually, if you wanna split hairs, this was colder than my freezer back home!
Needless to say there was no one sitting around unless you wanted to be a part of the frozen furniture.

I was like everyone else on the street walking with chin down and hands stuffed into my jacket. Gosh, this was absolutely my coldest day in England so far.

The kids were playing with the snow and throwing it on each other. Adults just walked on too cold to be amused by the weather ;)
I had to take a shot of this scribbled in the snow by one of the kids ;) 
The snow was alright for a couple of days but I can't imagine a whole season of it so I was relieved when the sun came out the next day. Mind you, don't be fooled by how bright it looks.


It was still freezing! haha but I'm enjoying the English country side. It's such a change of scenery and pub meals here like bangers n mash, pies and fish and chips are sooo cheap! :)



I notice on the busses here "Valentine's Day" is now showing, the movie. Such a star studded cast, looks like fun. If any of you have seen it, let me know if it's worth watching? Or any movie for that matter? Suggestions? (coz I'm not doing much outdoors in this weather haha) Thanks guys and Happy belated Valentines day n Gong Xi Fa Chai for all those celebrating...don't lose too much money. Hey, I managed to win 10 pounds playing darts with some friends here hehe ;)

Project Alpha in London Part 2

I am so relieved I got this furry head piece at Camden town coz it helps to block the wind factor. Without anything on your head, your ears can get really cold super fast. Where's your beanie Niki?

I love a good ole English breakfast and we had one every day before leaving the hotel.
Ming was a fabulous host. He took us to Borough Market which was fascinating.
It was alive with outdoor cooking, food lovers and people buying groceries.
Apparently, Jamie Oliver n Gordon Ramsay from Hell's kitchen also buy ingredients from this famous food market!
We then headed off to Stamford Bridge to film football fans going to the Chelsea vs Arsenal game.
It was such a sight to see travellers on the tube with their dogs! They were all so dignified and well behaved (again I wondered whether my own pugs would travel with such nonchalance or composure) yet thinking about it, I reckon they would embarrass me, wide eyed like country bumpkins coz my dogs have never boarded public trains haha
These HD cameras were darn heavy n we wouldn't wanna knock anyone on the train with it so thx David n Mike for babysitting the cams n allowing our cameramen to have a break!
Moment we got off the train, we heard the football fans singing in the street. It was an incredible atmosphere and they're obviously all passionate about their favourite teams.
The police kept a watchful eye on the crowd for safety. There were tonnes of police in the area on foot and on horses. There were heaps of Chelsea fans down the strip selling Chelsea football stuff.

Xiaxue was saying she felt out of place amongst these hard core football fans so she was mighty relieved when we left for dinner :)
U know how we are often relieved to get inside a building coz it's so hot and humid on the streets? Well, same relief to be indoors here but just the reverse scenario. People are not scrambling into buildings for their air cons but heaters instead to get warm ;)

It's a wrap, yay!!!! Filming for Project Alpha Season 2 is done but now post production begins! It's gonna take hours n hours in post to edit soooo much footage but I find the process really interesting, almost addictive coz time slips by without you feeling it in an editing suite. Editing powerfully influences how the story is told n at least I don't have to be wearing any make up in post production since it's all behind the scenes! :)

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    I find blogging quite therapeutic. It gives me a chance to express my thoughts. I'm currently a TV host living in KL and the mother of 3 confused looking pugs! ;) If u have the time, my modelling shots, tap dancing clips, full biography and TV trailers are all on www.jojostruys.com :-)

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