Drinking the Google Kool Aid

Recently I’ve hooked Phnomenon up with Google Analyticsand for someone with a marketing background and a firm belief in the importance of measurability, it makes me want to cry warm tears of pure unadulterated joy. The ability to work out campaign return on investment at the click of a button, for free, gives me a cult-like devotion to it. I have drunk the Google Kool Aid and it tastes extra-fruity. I haven’t been paying forensic attention to my web statistics but now I can no longer avoid it for it is a matter of the true faith.

The offshoot of this has been the discovery that people find their way to my website in ways much weirder than I can imagine. For those waylaid souls who came here looking for something that I don’t provide, here is the answer to your outlandish Google searches:

  • “What to do if I get diarrhoea in Cambodia” – I’m not a doctor but I do play one on television and as is my answer to all health-related questions: self-medicate. Check the consistency and frequency of your poop then follow this handy diarrhoea flowchart. Also make a note to self never to use the words “diarrhoea flow” consecutively.
  • “Food what daddy yankee eat” – Aside from wanting to cast aspersions on your grip on grammar, I doubt that the food what Daddy Yankee eat is of Khmer origin. The Washington Post reports that Mr. Yankee’s reggaeton stylings and his cadre of publicists are fuelled by Japanese food.
  • “JetstarAsia review” – I have developed an intense hatred for JetstarAsia because last time I flew with them, they cancelled my SIN-PNH leg and couldn’t get me on a flight for another whole week. This parlous state of affairs resulted in me flying ignominiously back to Phnom Penh via Bangkok with a one-day stopover. Flying Jetstar is completely joyless. Even flying on the shittiest Third World airline has some semblance of joy because when the plane lands the pilot generally receives rousing applause from the passengers. The one consolation is that aboard the JetstarAsia plane is the cheapest place in Singapore to purchase a cold Tiger beer.
  • “fish is important to Cambodian” – Your question is in the form of an undeniable statement. You are looking for The Ministry of Fish
  • “epiphany apocalyptic hp cabo” – I have no idea for what you’re searching but you truly scare me, because somebody has been looking for this more than once. Feed this into the Googlemonster’s maw and Phnomenon’s Cambodian hamburger review comes out the other end. Coincidence: I think not.

In addition, my humble Kambodzsai gasztroblog has also received a bucketload of visitors from Hungary since Hungarian foodblogger Chilies and Vanilia either arrived in Indochina or has just shown a sudden interest in the region. My Hungarian is not so good.

Quick Melbourne Roundup

If you want to know why the blogging has been slow over the past few weeks: I’ve been in Australia for weddings, returning via Singapore and then Bangkok thanks to JetstarAsia being shithouse. Those of you paying forensic attention will notice that the background of the Chocolate Flavour Collon shot is in fact the floor of the departure terminal at Pochentong Airport. I haven’t indulged in much Cambodian food as such, but a whole lot of cheese, lamb, and bottom-fermented ales.

On the Melbourne bar scene, Manchuria has taken over the old Chez Phat space and fitted it out as an opium den, substituting iniquity for a rampaging cocktail list and a wide selection of whiskeys. Thanks to them, I discovered that one of my favorite Melbourne brewers, 3 Ravens is now bottling and widely available. In new bar trends, Section 8 (pictured below) has taken the a piece of wharfside streetside, turning a space that you could easily mistake for a carpark into a space that you could still easily mistake for a carpark. Artifice is the new subterfuge.

Section 8 Container Bar, Melbourne, Australia

As for Cambodian food, Melbourne’s best Khmer restaurant, Bopha Devi has also opened a new outlet in the Docklands. Next time I’m back and my cash situation is liquid, I’ll drop by to review their $24 amok trei.

Chocolate Flavour Collon


The good news for Japanese expats and Pocky fans alike is that Starmart in Cambodia has started stocking Glico products via Thailand. The bad news is that Glico have also imported their Japanese brand of Engrish humour with them, as evidenced by the Chocolate Flavour Collon.

Collon is available in flavours that run from nauseating (“Strawberry”) to downright weird (“Green Tea”), but on my mission to Starmart for some milk, I only spotted the Chocolate and the Cream flavour.

As for the taste, I only bought the Chocolate, because Cream Flavour Collon made me feel dirty. It had a pleasingly crisp carapace surrounded a slightly gooey, chocolate-flavoured pool cleaner substance.

Overall, the experience was marginally less infuriating than the Flash-heavy Thai Glico website. I clicked through to the Collon page in hope of shedding some light on its ingredients and was greeted with a full-motion commercial for Green Tea Collon starring someone who I swear is the Thai sister of Juliette Lewis, cavorting overzealously in a tea field with her Thai friends. The level of their zealotry seems to suggest that the main ingredient in the Green tea flavour is cocaine. I looked no further.

Happy Year of The Dog

Thar be dragons!

Phnom Penh hedges it’s bets and partly closes down for two or so days. There is still the occasional bewildered dragon troupe roaming the streets, looking for a shopkeeper to molest. I like a country with three New Years each calendar year.

Since my Universal New Year resolutions have already gone to the dogs, this Lunar New Year I propose: more food market reviews, doing some actual interviews, and finish cutting my swathe through Cambodia’s beers.

What is RSS?

Read stuff, simply. RSS is a really useful technology with a really stupid name. People occasionally refer to it as a “feed”, by the the feed icon symbol, or by the technical term “Really Simple Syndication”.

What does it do for me?
It is like having all of your favorite websites send you a postcard when they are updated for you to peruse at your leisure. If you enjoy receiving postcards, you’ll probably like it. Instead of visiting every website to check for updates, RSS will warn you of fresh content. Like Phnomenon, RSS is all about freshness.

So how do I “subscribe” to this “RSS”?
To read RSS, you need a RSS reader. An RSS reader gathers all of the feeds that you want to be fed in one place. I prefer Google Reader because it is simple (and Google pays me money) but other popular readers include My Yahoo or Bloglines. The new versions of Firefox and Internet Explorer also have their own readers.