Saturday, February 18, 2012

Hyundai Veloster

A couple of weeks ago while on our afternoon break at work, my officemates and I saw this orange Hyundai looking for parking along the sidewalks. It looked like a totally new model, and I was totally stumped on what it was.

A few days later while on the way to the airport to pick up my mom, I saw the same model car, same color, hell it could have been the very same car I saw a few days ago. This time I had the benefit of checking out it's rear and seeing it's name. The Hyundai Veloster.

Now why did I choose to link to the Car and Driver site? Simple, it was through that site that I found out that the Veloster has assymetrical doors. Something I did not notice when I saw it since I only saw the driver's side. Apparently The driver's side has only one door while the passenger side has a front and rear door. It's a quirky design, but it works for me. For one, most of the time the driver's side is away from the sidewalk, so it would make things safer for passengers to get in via the passenger's side. Something the Car and Driver article mentioned.

Now, I have no idea if Hyundai will sell this in the Philippines. I'm guessing the Veloster I saw was an import. If they do decide to sell it here, I hope it's relatively affordable. The technology seemed a bit too advanced for it to be priced in the "Toyota - Honda" price range, I fear it might get priced closer to the "BMW 1-Series" range, but I could be wrong.


Thursday, February 09, 2012

Armchair GM Featuring the New York Knicks

Before I begin I have to let it be known that I'm a bigger Melo fan than an Amar'e fan. And I'm not really a Knicks fan, I'm only rooting for them because of Melo, and to a lesser degree Amar'e. However, for the real life Knicks to be successful under Mike D'Antoni's system I do know that Melo just won't work. So I played around with ESPN's latest NBA Trade Machine and I came up with two possible trade scenarios that might help the Knicks (and also help the other team in the trade). Let's not forget that the estimated wins added or lost are just that, estimates.

Trade Number 1
The Knicks trade: Carmelo Anthony and Iman Shumpert
The Celtics trade: Rajon Rondo and Ray Allen

Okay, so the Celtics in theory get -7 wins while the Knicks get +7 wins. How is that fair to the Celtics? Well, for starters the Celtics get two younger players (although Melo has been in the league for quite a while, he is still relatively younger than Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett) they can build on for the future. Melo and Shumpert would greatly benefit from the leadership two successful future hall-of-famers would give them. Melo would just assume Pierce's scoring burden, and the two have similar play styles so the transition might not be that difficult. Pierce can slide over to shooting guard and be more of a support scorer instead of having to carry most of the scoring load. Garnett could focus more on defense and rebounding too since Melo can also operate on post ups. Let's not forget about Shumpert, who is also a pretty good defensive minded guard. He just needs to improve his shooting and his passing a bit more.

The Knicks get a true point guard in Rondo. This is someone who fits perfectly with D'Antoni's system, and I'm pretty sure Rondo will always find the open man. Let's not forget that Rondo is also a very good defender and combined with Tyson Chandler would greatly improve the Knicks' defense. With Ray Allen they get a marksman from three, someone who could steady the team with his veteran leadership, and his play style complements Amar'e's play style instead of clashing with it. Plus Landry Fields would benefit greatly if he were to learn from one of the league's greatest shooters.

Trade Number 2

The Knicks trade: Carmelo Anthony and Iman Shumpert
The Nets trade: Deron Williams and Johann Petro

I'm more of a Rondo fan than a Deron fan but this one gives the Knicks a little more offensive firepower. Again, Deron is a passing point guard who can score, and I'm sure he would love to have a pick and roll partner again. Plus Deron would be better offensively than Rondo. Petro's just there to balance the salaries to make the trade work.

As for the Nets, they finally get Melo, who is signed on long term meaning they don't have to worry about Deron leaving their team after this season. Shumpert was added to possibly replace the void left by Deron and hopefully learn from Avery Johnson. And if the Nets aren't planning on getting Dwight Howard anymore, a core of Brook Lopez - Carmelo Anthony - Iman Shumpert does sound good. I can't believe I'm that high on Shumpert, but I am.

Well, those are two trades I thought of that might help the Knicks and their trade partners. If it happens in real life it will be interesting, but if it doesn't, I didn't lose anything.

Oh, and if you're wondering why I don't have a trade with a Western Conference team, I just couldn't find a team with a good point guard who might be willing to get Melo. Sorry, Suns, but Steve Nash is a bit too old to consider.

However, just for fun's sake let's try this trade out I just thought of...

(Bonus) Trade Number 3

The Knicks Trade: Carmelo Anthony
The Suns Trade: Steve Nash and Josh Childress

Nash returns with D'Antoni for a few more years (I can't guess how many more) however the biggest risk here is that Nash won't have the benefit of Phoenix's excellent medical staff so he might run the risk of more injuries. Plus, D'Antoni has a habit of playing his starters too many minutes every night. Childress is just there to balance the salaries.

Melo moves to Phoenix, but never mind. Their owner wouldn't pull the trigger on this one. If what I read is true, the Suns' owner wouldn't want to spend on Melo and go to the luxury tax.


Sunday, February 05, 2012

Katsu Curry

I don't have any pictures to support my article, but take my word for it. If you are in the Makati area and you're looking for a good tasting katsu curry you can always head by Zaifu in the Rockwell Power Plant Mall.

So far I've had katsu curry in about three or four places in Makati but the best I've had is at Zaifu. It has nothing to do with the cut of meat, but with the curry itself. It just tasted the best. 

But the best katsu curry I've had in the Philippines has to be in Ryuma at Paseo de Sta. Rosa in Sta. Rosa, Laguna. The cut of meat, the sauce, and the rice all blend together so well that I would gladly visit that place again for another round. Plus the other offerings of Ryuma aren't that bad either. And they are really affordable.