Sunday May 22, 2011
Buddies and foodies
By AIDA AHMAD
Best friends Kavin Jayaram and Adrian Jalaludin are foodies who will travel the distance for their favourite satay or chicken rice balls.
COMEDIAN Kavin Jayaram and TV host, model and actor Adrian Jalaludin are the best of friends now but when they first met, insults were involved.
By day, KL-born Kavin is the serious guy doing his work as an engineer. But at night, he is a laugh-a-minute man who performs stand-up comedy on stage.
The 31-year-old funny guy, who jokingly describes himself as an “idiot”, can be seen doling out his side-splitting lines at Time Out KL Comedy Thursday at Zouk Club and shows organised by Comedy Club KL.
“I’m also part of a big project involving an Asian comedy tour,” he reveals during this interview with Sunday Metro.
Kavin continues to jest, saying that he has an opinion on everything, “and usually it’s wrong. So, I decided to share my opinions with everyone in the hope that they will pay me. A loveable idiot whom people come to see if they need cheering up, so their life problems won’t seem so bad anymore.”
He says he was 17 when he first saw Harith Iskander on stage and thought stand-up comedy was something he could pursue.
“My brother used to say I should perform stand-up comedy but I procrastinated,” he recalls. “Unfortunately, he never had a chance to watch me perform as he passed away five years ago.”
Quickly brushing aside the melancholy, Kavin describes being a good comic as no laughing matter and that it requires a lot of hard work.
“The first time I attempted to do comedy was in 2006. I got 150 friends to watch me at a pub but my performance then was really bad,” he relates, adding that it took him three years to master his act with support from other comedians.
Always game to learn something new, Kavin went to audition for the position of host for Cube, an English youth talk show on NTV7, last September. It was during this audition that he met Adrian.
“I got the gig in the end,” quips Adrian, who was present at the interview.
“The producer called me to say they opted for someone who was better looking,” says Kavin, who adds jokingly that he called Adrian names after that. “But Adrian took my insults quite well and we’ve been good friends ever since.”
Adrian, 26, co-hosts Football Overload and Bola@Mamak on Astro. He was named by Female magazine as one of the finalists for 50 Gorgeous People, Malaysia in 2006, when he was 21 years old.
Also born in KL, Adrian is of Indonesian-Dutch-German-Chinese-Pakistani parentage. In 2006, he began a career in runway modelling but after eight months, realised it wasn’t for him.
“My friends told me to try TV hosting, which I did. My first job was hosting the Champions Youth Cup for Astro in 2007,” Adrian says.
The Champions Youth Cup is an annual football tournament endorsed by the G-14 group as a Club World Championship for the Under-19 teams of some of the world’s largest clubs.
Adrian also hosts a TV show in Singapore called National School Games, a sports magazine programme. It keeps him busy commuting between the two countries.
Apart from being in the business of entertaining, Kavin and Adrian share another interest – eating out. The guys speak about their food adventures and how far they would go for their favourite food.
> What is your philosophy on food? Do you have any favourite food?
Kavin: I will try anything once. I have travelled to many places all over the world and have eaten some weird stuff. But I will not try those Balut eggs from the Philippines. My favourite food is Italian food.
Adrian: I like trying weird food too, including fried insects and bugs in Thailand. On the normal side, my favourite dishes are French escargots and chicken rice balls from Malacca.
> Is there any food you don’t like?
Kavin: I have a dislike for giant beansprouts. It has a certain smell that turns me off.
Adrian: I hate brinjal and papaya.
> Do you binge or have comfort food?
Kavin: Nasi Lemak! There is a stall selling great nasi lemak near my home in Ampang. Cooking is also something I love. I like to make my favourite pasta with coconut cream and bacon.
Adrian: Snickers ice cream. But I can’t binge a lot nowadays as my metabolic rate has declined.
> Do you have any peculiar eating habit?
Kavin: I like to use my fingers to eat most of the time, even with spaghetti. I also like eating food on toast, spaghetti sauce and baked beans.
Adrian: I dip everything in Nutella!
> Would you go out of your way for certain food? Would you eat at an empty restaurant?
Kavin: Definitely. My wife and I like to drive to Kajang to eat satay, sometimes to Ipoh for the Char Koay Teow and Johor for Laksa Johor. The beef noodles in Seremban are also good; another favourite place is Port Klang where we go for the seafood. Yes, I will eat at an empty restaurant just to give it a try.
Adrian: I will travel to Malacca for the chicken rice balls and Kampung Baru for Nasi Lemak Antarabangsa. Yes, I will eat at an empty restaurant because I feel bad for them (laughs).
> What do you dislike most about eating out? What turns you off?
Kavin: Having to argue with my wife about where we should go for a meal.
Adrian: Getting all dressed up (laughs). I prefer to order in for food.
> How do you find out about where to eat?
Kavin: Mostly from TimeOut KL.
> Do you watch TV food shows? Which are your favourites?
Kavin: Yes. I like to watch License to Grill and Nigella’s show.
Adrian: My favourite is Gordon Ramsay in Kitchen Nightmares.
> If you had to cook a fast meal, what would it be?
Kavin: Lamb and yoghurt curry.
Adrian: Fried rice.
> Is there a street food recommended by friends that you have been hoping to try out?
Kavin: The Thai Fish Cakes in Bangkok! I can never get the perfect recipe to do it on my own.
Adrian: I like to tuck into lok-lok after a night out on weekends.
> What’s your favourite shopping mall/pasar malam/flea market?
Kavin: Kepong wet market. You will smell like a fish market for a few days but it is worth it.
Adrian: Taman Tun Dr Ismail market during Ramadan.
> How do you spend your Sundays?
Kavin: Sundays are mostly spent with my wife. We will either be at my parents’ house in Puchong or my in-laws’ place in Perak.
Adrian: Under the blanket watching DVDs. But I’m usually busy commuting to Singapore to host my show.