Thursday, December 22, 2005

The Football Fan that is me

I'm forever blowing bubbles, pretty bubbles in the air, they fly so high, they reach the sky, and as my dreams they fade and die. Fortune's always hidding, I looked everywhere, I'm forever blowing bubbles, pretty bubbles in the air

For those of you who had seen Green Street Hooligans then you’ll be very familiar with this chant of the Green Street Elite. This is such a wonderful film. If you would like to see Frodo Baggins breaking the noses of people twice his size by headbutting them in then you ought to see this one.

Spurred by that, I saw Real: The Movie. A film about Real Madrid, the most successful European club in history and what it means to different sets of people. From a Japanese girl who’s obsessed with Beckham, a Senegalese man who has to walk 60km every time to watch the team play because that’s how far the nearest TV set is and a history teacher who never liked football was transferred to Madrid and was dumbfounded on what the deal is with the football club anyway? Now, that got me thinking. Well, dreaming actually. Wouldn’t it be just grand to live in a city like Madrid? Or Milan? London, even? But definitely not Manchester. People would tell me that, “Oh you should see the paintings in Madrid!” or “You just have to shop at Milan!” but as soon as I get there, I would only have two destinations on my mind – the Santiago Bernabeu and the San Siro. Everybody has a 10-year-old inside them somewhere and that was mine talking.

Last weekend I finally managed to do something interesting worth mentioning in a long time. It has to do with, what else, but football. Haha it’s a futsal tournament actually, organized by ASAS – that’s Alumni Sekolah Alam Shah, by the way. I know what most of you are thiniking and the answer is no, I didn’t took part as a player. I was part of the supporters @ hooligans. Though I was given the title ‘manager’ for one for the teams but without any managerial powers. My main job was to believe in the team no matter what happens and I have to make the players believe that as well, especially when things turned sour. I guess I didn’t do too bad at all because the team went to the final! Yeah! We were unlucky really. It was all square after regulation time and penalty shoot-outs. In the end, the flip of coin determined the winner. We just chose the side that was facing the floor. Even though we were second best overall but we had the best supporters. Everyone else was just too damn serious. We were the liveliest and noisiest bunch. Everyone realized how cool it was to be a 99. It was a good Sunday. And the humiliation of Arsenal made it even better. It was the 2nd annual. And be pretty damn sure we’re coming back better for the 3rd.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Bad Movies and the 'Plup-plup' Babies

It used to be Sylvester Stallone as a one-man renegade soldier and Arnold Schwarzenegger as an android with a license to kill. Now, it’s Keira Knightley as a bounty hunter and Charlize Theron as a dominatrix assassin. What has the world gone into?

Every Astro viewer would be familiar with the ad of the Taiwanese (I think) musical Perhaps Love because it comes out just about every commercial slot. Anyway, despite the annoyance I think it shows promise. It has that spectacular-ness and splendour of Moulin Rouge and Chicago. I mean, look at me, I can’t even get that ‘Hah-mei-yo, sah-mei-yo’ chant out of my head. It’s disturbingly catchy. But that’s not the point. Good for them, you see, but it’s something closer to home that has me worrying. It seems that musicals are a returning trend in the movie industry nowadays and Malaysia are trying to jump onto the bandwagon. News is, one of the most anticipated one is Divas, starring none other than Ning Baizura. Another is a copycat of Kabhi Kushi. The local film industry tried this musical formula once before and it didn’t catch up. Now they’re trying at it again and I tell you what, the result will still be the same. Well, maybe they’ll earn some worthwhile revenue but I can pretty much assure you, if you’re expecting even a hint of a Broadway quality standard, you will be disappointed. Malaysia is still pretty useless in making movies, let alone musicals. We have such terrible choreographers and I can’t remember the last time I heard a good soundtrack coming from a local film. I just hope they will scrap this idea but I guess it’s a bit too late, isn’t it?

Still sticking with the movie theme, how many of you are excited about Narnia? I’m pretty sure everyone who has seen the trailer would more or less agree that it’s a cross between Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings. Both movies are fantastic so there’s no reason not to be excited. I’m excited about the movie myself. But not for all about the 3 noble children against the bad white witch and the penultimate battle between good and evil. What I’m more interested about was when I saw the trailer, there’s a scene showing two talking beavers at a table, conversing intelligently. I mean, how fascinating is that? Talking beavers! It’s both so disturbing and intriguing at the same time. Can you imagine having them as pets? “Hi, welcome to my home. Would you like to see my pet beavers? They talk, you know. They can even quote Shakespeare.” And they say the young minds of today are twisted. And this book was published in the 1950s.

Okay, leaving movies behind, I want to talk about something more gruesome. Last weekend, after a good kickabout of futsal, the lads went for a drink, as usual. But this time around we had a medic student among us and being boys, we couldn’t help but ask all about the gruesome, disgusting and every sexually inclined stories there is to know. It started off rather lightly with questions regarding the appendix. Then we venture into buasir (I don’t what it is in English). The highlight has to be when we talked about delivering babies. Imagine this, he’s the same age as I am and yet, he has personally delivered 10 babies into this world. 10! And apparently as a med student, this is nothing of a big deal. And this guy has come face to face to a wide variety of female genitalia that I can ever hope for to see in my entire life. And he gets to stick his fingers into them, to know the baby’s position and stuff. Not to play, of course, because that will be malpractice. Though he did mention having a close call with one patient. She was young and it was her first pregnancy so came to see this friend of mine to do the usual check-up and when the sticking-in-your-fingers part came he felt, well, let me quote, “dahla lembut, ketat, panas…huih,”. Of course, being a good doctor and everything he reassigned the patient to a colleague. Did I mention she’s pretty too? Well, she is and that didn’t really help in lessing the discomfort part. Then there’s the plup-plup babies. What’s a plup-plup baby? Well, the term really came about that night but a plup-plup baby is a baby who is the sixth or probably seventh child of the mother. So in that case the mother is pretty used to the birth process and the ‘access route’ is, well, more accessible. So the baby comes out rather easily. And my friend imitated the delivery action while sounding a ‘plup’ sound, hence the plup-plup babies. The opposite, of course, are first time mothers and he further explained that in delivery cases, there’s always a pair of scissors. I wouldn’t tell you what it’s used for ‘cause I know you very much can guess and it’s not just cutting the umbilical cord. And let me tell you the size, is pretty intimidating. Now I can understand why first-time fathers are happy and yet a bit sad at the birth of his first-born. I know I would.

It’s the final month of the year and Christmas is coming soon. A year ago I was pretty much miserable. Well, it hasn’t changed much this time around either. I’m slowly beginning to fathom the harsh realities of living in this unfair and cruel world. It’s only Tuesday and I’m already thinking about the weekend. Ah yes, another disgruntled human being. Oh I forgot to mention Cahaya came by the house recently for a meet-the-parents session. It went well, I guess. It was uneventful to say the least. She was rather tall. But then again, she’s a stewardess, as if I’m expecting something less. One thing I did notice she had a pair of Coach shoes on. That must’ve cost something. But again, she must have bought them somewhere in Paris after having some croissant for breakfast down at a café au lait near her hotel where she was staying. Yet, I find it rather difficult to imagine her as future sister-in-law. I wonder why?

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Bid It! and the Best of it all

Ho-yo! Ho-yo! Dr. Slump, yeah! Haih, long time no write. I’m in a slump you see. No good good idea come one to write story about. Hence the title of blog, loh! Anyway, I think my life was dry for the past couple of weeks. Either that or at times I was too lazy to write anything when something actually did happen. Well, this time I came about something a bit of exciting and coincidentally I am in the mood to write.

I developed something of a habit you see. A bad one too. It started yesterday, right in front of this computer. Well, the signs were already there for a while now but yesterday it took its turn for the worse. It’s the Channel V virus. And I’m infected with the ‘Bid It’ variant.

I’m sure most of you know what this thing is all about. Up to this they were just busy offering handphones as the items for bidding and I wasn’t that tempted. Then I read in the papers yesterday and the items for this week is a Sony PSP and an Oakley Thump among others. What tech geek could ever resist a Sony PSP!? Apart from the IPod Nano, this is the IT thing at the moment. It’s so cool you could wear them as a fashion accessory. So later that night I typed and soon I find myself sending RM0.50 SMSs whimsically. Before I knew it, 10 Ringgit just went down the drain. I was just in time to regain my composure and managed to set my handphone aside for the night. Come today the image of the Sony PSP still lingers in my head. It was just a couple of hours ago when I thought of an ‘ong’ number and whoops, goes another 2 Ringgit. And something tells me that wouldn’t be the last time that scenario will occur again. So far I’ve managed to get ‘unique’ but ‘not lowest’. It feels like Russian Roulette. You always think you can do one step better each time. And that thought happens every time. Oh these marketing people, they are so diabolically brilliant.

Well, it’s over now and I missed it. The winner is RM4.70 for the PSP and RM3.19 for the Thump. This is when everybody goes, “Oh I should have thought of that price!”. Come to think of it, this is like “The Price Is Right” the modern version. Man, did I love that gameshow.

George Best had died. Even though I despise Man Utd but this man’s iconic status as a footballer surpasses all that and that demands respect from every football fan. Heck, even non-football fans remember him. Such as my mother and my Business Law lecturer. But they both remember him for the wrong reasons – a handsome but an alcoholic young man. My favorite from Best is this: “I used to went missing a lot – Miss Canada, Miss World, Miss United Kingdom,” and his remarks about David B. You know, he can’t head, can’t tackle, can’t use his left foot but other than that, he’s alright. I never saw him play live but TV were showing some of his old footages and good God, this man was brilliant. He was a player that would make a crowd go “oooh” and “aaah” and gasp before shouting for a celebrated goal. Take my word for it, he’s just that good. And he will be missed.

Another icon to leave us is Pat Morita. Sounds familiar doesn’t he? Well, he’s more popularly known as Mr. Miyagi of the Karate Kid franchise. He died of natural causes at the age of 73. I like this guy so much. I used to imitate the “wax on, wax off” stance even before I entered kindergarten even though I didn’t know what it meant back then. I still find the Karate Kid reruns on HBO amusing. And did you know he received an Oscar nomination for his role in Part 1? I just realized that only after reading about his death. One of the unsung heroes of the silver screen.

For you animal lovers out there I would like you to try and google the word ‘liger’. You will come across something very interesting. Some say a mythical creature. I’m just surprised I never seen it on Animal Planet.

Well, that all folks. I would love to talk about Perfection, Sleeping Beauty, Aisha’s friend Emma and Mawar’s friend Zherpin but I think that would be too taxing. Cheers and have a beautiful day wherever you are, even as far as that girl in New Zealand who even dared not to given me an inkling of hint that she was flying out, excursing of out the continent.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Stupid Ideas and Espionage

Ladies and gentlemen, may I introduce you to Pepsi Tarik. It’s a “coffee flavored carbonated drink”. Another ridiculous product from these so called westerners. Another item to add to the long list of silly ideas in the view to penetrate further into the local market. Pepsi is not the first and I am sure isn’t the last to veer its way to supposedly ‘revolutionary’ strategies. If you would, remember when Pizza Hut introduced the Satay pizza? Wasn’t quite that nice, was it? It had such a poor response it was chunked. The same goes with the rending and tom yam flavored ones. KFC too tried with the tom yam crust fried chicken. Same result, poor feedback. So they went further ahead and introduced the curry version. That too went to the bin. McD also tried, though a bit subtle. They have the bubur ayam McD, or chicken porridge. I think it’s still around but I don’t remember anyone actually giving it the thumbs up. When I go to McDonald’s, the only thing on my mind is to get myself a fat, juicy burger. Lots of calories and dripping with cholesterol. Who wants to buy boring ol’ porridge? Who came up with this brilliant idea anyway? Are they trying to add the senior citizens as their target market too nowadays? Those bastards. I have one advice to these so called western fast food corporations. Stick to your western flavors. There’s no need to change. Don’t try mixing up with eastern flavors. Just because you like ice cream and tuna sandwich doesn’t mean blending them together would create something better. As a matter of fact, you would ruin it. Please, please stop it. Look at Coke. They added vanilla to the drinks and voila! Instant hit. And as for Pepsi, why do you confuse the word ‘tarik’ and ‘coffee’ in the same phrase? We only tarik tea here, not coffee.

Well, I found a new toy today. It’s available online and it’s free. It’s called Google Earth. What it is, is that it enables you to view satellite pictures of anywhere on earth. Anywhere. It really is intriguing. You can’t go as far as zoom in on a stray cat but you can get a good view of your home if you’re lucky. I’m not so. Gombak is little out of reach. I can only locate as far as Haji Tapah. But I did manage to locate Sasa’s home. Down to her driveway by the side of her house. I could also make out Aritha’s house but I couldn’t exactly pick out the precise one because they all look the same from above. I could only identify as far as the street. So anyone interested who has nothing to do at the office with a high bandwidth, you can try this out. Some sections of the public claims it’s potentially dangerous as it can be use by terrorist to plan attacks but I think that’s far fetched. These pictures are readily available anyway. And besides, it’s not like they’re blueprint of the city. It doesn’t tell the exact dimensions or what’s underneath the ground. But it’s sure a lot of fun for the common man. It gives you that Enemy of the State feeling. Just that this one isn’t in real time.

I’d love to write more but I have to end here. Cheers and sorry for grammatical mistakes.

Monday, November 14, 2005

The Never-ending Quest of a Student

You know how much the Malaysian government taxes imported cars, right? It makes you wonder, what kind of cars we would see filling our federal roads should those tax rates are abolished. Without taxes, a person would only have to pay for a brand new Honda Civic what he would pay for a Proton Wira. So, if Wira owners could become Civic owners, what about current Civic owners? Probably become Accords. And what about the current Accords, or Camry? A C 180K Merc most probably. The 3-series’ could most likely turn to Jags. And so on, so on. Imagine that. But in the name of patriotism, that scenario is unlikely to happen in the near future. Another, ‘what if’ situation.

I met Wakju earlier this evening, at the bus stand on Jalan Ampang right across the Twin Towers, in front of the would-be The Meritz. He just finished his classes for the day and was waiting for the bus back home. So was I. I just take the Putra line, that is. So there we were. Two university graduates, standing beside the road, thinking that their learning days were over and yet, it was far from it. Career opportunities are very scarce these days so taking up professional courses is a pretty reasonable course of action. When I reached home, I received news of an opportunity to join a financial planning course under Perbadanan Usahawan Nasional Bhd (PUNB). It’s definitely worth a try. So it got me thinking. This trend is likely to continue for me. This, going for learning courses one after the other. I’m much of a student now than since I was 7. So I wouldn’t be much surprised if I’ll be doing my Masters sooner rather than later. And further down the road, dare I say it, my doctorate. Sure it sounds a bit far fetched at the moment, considering what a lousy student I am but it certainly isn’t impossible. Believe me even I couldn’t stomach the idea right now but life has a funny way in determining how’s one life will go. I have seen a lazy student become a teacher. I have seen a physicist become a comedian. And I have seen a poet turn into a rockstar. Life is weird in more ways than one. We could only plan so much.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

On the 8th day of Raya, my loved one gave to me...

I guess it’s a curse, being an IT graduate, that I cannot live through a single day without access to up-to-date information. That’s what happened during my balik kampung period. The not-so-much of a beach house now is far away from any Streamyx connection and an Astro unit is pretty much unfeasible, so for nearly 5 days I was miserable without being able to check my e-mails, check-out soccernet, update my fantasy football team and get a healthy dose of Sportscenter and intensive coverage of Matchday 5 of the Champions League. One even had to go to town just to get a copy of The Star. And that doesn’t happen everyday. In effect I only found out about the result between Lille and Man Utd last Saturday. I had a wonderful Raya but it’s the periods between visiting relatives and eating the kuih Raya that was mind-numbing. It reminded me pretty much why I no longer watch free TV nowadays. I mean, that Jaafar Onn beras Jati commercial is just so incredibly annoying. They had this whole Kesultanan Melayu Melaka theme going on and there on the rice package is a picture of Jalaludin Hasan in a suit giving the thumbs up. Like, what the fuck? Consolation, if any, comes in the usual heart-warming ad from Petronas led by Sharifah Amani. Apart from that, watching Puteri Gunung Ledang and Pontianak Harum Sundal Malam again just gives me something to do. Oh how I craved for my PS2 back home.

But Raya is not just about TV and electronic communication. It’s about being in the festivity mood and being around your family and relatives. If that still works for you. It got me worked up for at most 2 days. My friends here in KL are already went karaoke-ing on the night of the 3rd Raya. I don’t know what happening to the youth nowadays. We don’t used to enjoy Raya as much as we did when we were younger. I’m not sure it has to do something with the age thingy.

Like last Sunday. Gambit had an open house up at his condo at Ampang and even though only a few people had showed up, it wasn’t really that bad because we ended up having a public viewing of Gol & Gincu on Astro Ria. It seemed a pretty good idea at first, and we’re talking mostly males here, when finally we realized how much of a chick flick it really was. But hey, we’re all avid supporters of the local film industry. Except all love stories which has Erra Fazira in it. Then, later on, Chelsea got beaten. Haih…

I happened to watch something very interesting on Monday. You remember that once I went to the Ning Baizura and Zainal Abidin show recording last July at Angkasapuri, courtesy of Sasa, right? Well, the recording was to be aired during the 5th day of Raya and since I had nothing else better to do, in a very uncharacteristic way I flicked on TV2 and stuck to it. And it was such a poor transition by RTM. Viewing it live was actually quite pleasant but when it comes on screen, goodness me, the stage looks awful tenfold and so were the dancers. And the audio crackled. Both Ning and Zainal has high pitched voices but RTM’s sound system just didn’t do justice. But that’s not the interesting part. The interesting part, which I didn’t tell you people before was when it was Zainal’s turn to perform after Ning, and while he was conversing with the audience after his opening piece, Aritha who was then seated beside me, decided to suddenly scream at the top of her lungs, “I love you, Zainal~!”. Almost instinctively I brought my face down to my lap and covered it with both my hands out of embarrassment. Zainal heard it and said something back but I couldn’t recall because I was busy whispering to myself, “I can’t believe she did that. I can’t believe she did that,” over and over again. And I thought that was that. End of story. But as I watched that recording on TV that night, that scene came on and you can clearly hear Aritha’s voice yet again, filling the auditorium. It had my jaw gaping. And this time I remembered what Zainal’s reply was. “Ape? Jangan cakap bahasa Mandarin, saya tak paham. Ha, wa ai nee,”. And the crowd giggled. I SMSed Aritha telling her what I saw, or heard that is, on national TV and she just find it all too amusing. As a matter of fact, so did I.

It’s now a week after Raya and things are returning to normal in the city. Traffic jams are building and people no longer rush back as early as 3 o’clock to be the first at their local pasar Ramadhan. But I happen to drop by at Suria earlier today and something caught my eye which really irritated me. It’s the school holidays. On there were hordes of teenagers pestering about aimlessly around. There’s the group of youth who think they are the next gen of Punk or Ska group and there’s the lovey-dovey couple, which is the most annoying and repulsive. Don’t they understand the meaning of the phrase ‘a public place’? It means the public uses the place. Meaning, as opposed as the name suggests, a display of public affection is not in the prime interest of the public. If you want to fondle your spouse’s bottom or would like to clean his or her ear with your tongue, would you please, please, get a god damn room! And it gets worse on the LRT. I’m surprised they didn’t just have a raunchy sex scene then and there. But I wasn’t after I read the Durex Global Sex Survey in today’s paper. After the bedroom, Malaysians like to engage sex in toilets. Although it didn’t state whether it’s within their private quarters or the public amenities. Knowing the state of our public restrooms I’m guessing the former. But I could be wrong. Still an interesting facet though, nevertheless. But if you want to talk about adventurous, whoa, Malaysians like to do it in the car, in their parents’ bedroom and some even at work and in the garden. I’ll leave the imagination part to you. And the average age we lose our virginity? 19. It’s quite scary but among the other countries, we are one of the latest. Only India and Vietnam are above us. In Iceland, people lose their virginity at the average age of 15.9. That means you’re an Icelandic weirdo if you haven’t had sex by the time you celebrate your 16th birthday.

Aah, there’s nothing like talking about sex early in the morning. That’s all fer now. We’ll catch up again soon. Oh by the way, Selamat Hari Raya and Happy Deepavali wo are kind hearted enough to visit my blog. Good day and good luck.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Mid-day Rambling Session

I can’t believe I left my last entrée on such a morbid note. It’s time to change that. Let’s have a chat, shall we?

Let’s start off with the movies. Have you seen Zorro 2? No. Of course not, because it doesn’t exists. The latest installment to the Banderas – Zeta Jones movie collaboration is originally titled ‘The Legend of Zorro’. But why do they change it to Zorro 2? Well, my theory is the public (and I mean specifically the Malaysian one) have a difficult time differentiating between the words ‘Mask’ and ‘Legend’, so in order to avoid confusion and thinking that the studio is merely re-releasing the first movie for, oh I don’t know, the festive season maybe, they just re-market it as Zorro 2. That is why, if you take a look at the promotion billboard at the local cinemas, the numeral 2 looks so distastefully fake and out of sync with the rest of the repertoire. The same thing, I am sure, does not happen at the US.

I don’t get to watch a lot of movies lately due to the lack of opportunities but I did manage to catch Goal! recently and my what a brilliant movie. Finally, football has a decent movie to be represented with. I’ve seen almost all of the previous cock-ups and I have to say the one with Sylvester Stallone in it is the worst. It may have Pele but a horrible movie nevertheless. This one is a breath of fresh air. It catches the true essence of what makes football exciting. With Newcastle, The Toon Army and St James’ Park as its backdrop is just pure genius. But the most amusing part is when David Beckham came on screen because in front of me, there’s a row of 5 girls sitting and they just shrieked when David B made his 2 minute cameo. It wasn’t even on a football pitch. Just a few dopey lines but my, these girls were jumping up and down in their seats. I couldn’t help but have a chuckle myself.

Now let’s talk about the festive season. As you all know, Raya is just around the corner. But, unless you’re a Hindu, you tend to forget that Deepavali is dropping by first. I know I do. One of the reasons is promotion. You know how shopping malls like to dress up their centre court according with the festive themes when times like these come around. It would be silly for them not to. So when I dropped by at Suria KLCC recently they have this ala kampung style décor with artificial wooden houses built closely together. Along with a group of people playing congkak at a corner this could only remind you of one thing – Hari Raya. Then I went to One Utama 2 and they have a huge sprawling wooden platform with the words ‘Cahaya Lembaran’ emblazoned on the centre edifice. This too would aptly remind you about Hari Raya. And at these two giant shopping malls you could likely hear classic Raya tunes from the late P. Ramlee, Saloma and Sudirman playing in the background. This too would add to the Raya feel. But what about Deepavali? Apart from the small kolum you would see at the entrance at Cold Storage, I couldn’t remember anything else. And want to know the funny thing is? You could easily associate Hari Raya with Raya tunes. Even for Chinese New Year you could recall some Gong Xi songs but for Deepavali? What? Deepavali doesn’t even have a theme song! The poor buggers. And we brag about so much about Malaysia being multicultural and everything. Can’t even find a theme song for Deepavali. So embarrassing. For accreditation purposes, I would like to point out that Harith Iskandar first conned me with this idea.
In other insignificant news in my life, my left thumb is sore, which disables me from playing Winning Eleven 9 for the time being. Another futsal nightie is due tomorrow and it bugs me that it’ll be again at Sunway for two consecutive weeks. So far leh! My streamyx connection suddenly feels like dial up lately and I find it unbelievable that the Jalan Tun Razak gridlock could start as early as 12.30 pm. It makes me wonder whether some of these KL people actually go to work or not. And how could anyone resist the Pussycat Dolls of the music scene. If money is no object, I would certainly like to hire them to be center stage for my bachelor party. Accompanied of course, with some Playboy bunnies. Ooh what a night that would be. I just hope the future missus wouldn't mind.

I better stop here. I’m rambling too much. Cheers.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Datin Seri Endon:The Passing

It’s another brand new day here in Kuala Lumpur but sadly it’s a grey one. A gloom that has engulfed the city following the passing away of Datin Seri Endon, namely Malaysia’s First Lady. The late wife of the current Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi.

Her death is inevitable, I’m afraid. Having struggling with breast cancer, you know it would come sooner or later. But nobody ever dared spoke of it because deep in our hearts, all we Malaysians were vying for a miracle. But not all hopes come true.

Even though it is definitely a sad day for the country, the question remains to be with the widower, the Prime Minister himself. The lost of your life long companion is never easy but unlike other people, he doesn’t have the luxury to mourn for an indefinite period. He still has to run the country. Maybe it’s not fair but he for one cannot lose sight nor the concentration to be objective in his work, for the good of the Malaysian public, even in the tragic event such as this. He, of all people, should have realized this. We sympathize with him as man, but we desperately need him as our leader.

All hear for the PM.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

My Fried Router

This entrée is dedicated to Tomok who earlier today hit my blog 10 times in the hope that I’ve updated it. Well, here’s your treat, mate. Dengan ini aku berharap kau takde nak cari alasan lagi untuk tak buat keje dan makan gaji buta.

So the only reason I have been absent from the online community recently is because my ADSL router was fried.

Almost a week ago Gombak was hit with the worst thunderstorm in a very long time. Such it that one lightning struck too close to home that it produced a surge strong enough to knock my router dead. Maybe some of you would accuse of me not being careful and take the decency to switch off all electronic devices in the event of such thunderstorms. I’m guilty of that. But my router was connected to a lightning isolator which gave a 100% guarantee from lightning surges. Want to know a strange thing? The lightning isolator is unscathed. And my wireless router which also connected to it also survived the onslaught. So what’s the problem? What ‘killed’ my router? It was still the lightning but the surge did not come through the power line. It came through the phone line. Evident? My fixed phone line went kaput too. It was a dead giveaway. So while the phone line was fixed the next day with a quick call to Telekom, nothing could be done to fix my internet connectivity until I buy a new router. That came yesterday but then came another problem. I have trouble setting up the damn thing. For an IT graduate to not know how to set up a router is troublingly insulting. It’s like a professional football player not knowing how to take a penalty. I fiddled with everything but it still wouldn’t connect with streamyx. I went to bed an unsatisfied man. Today, I came back and tried again. And again, to no avail. I tried calling the store’s tech support but nobody picked up. With the knowledge that I can work this somehow made me to continue trying. Until about 30 minutes to buka puasa, something happened – it connected. I was perplexed. I have tried this configuration many times before to no success but suddenly – oh yes, there could only be one explanation. The streamyx line also went kaput during the thunderstorm and it has just been rectified. Soooo, so so so so so, I am once again connected to the vast electronic world and am a happy man. Whew…

This is more like a on-the-spot entrée. I’ll probably write some better stories after this. This is just to get Tomok off my back. Nah, dah hepi noq?

Oh yeah, it's my friend Gambit's birthday tomorrow so his petite girlfriend Mawar decided to throw a small party or something to commemorate the event. So, I'll be headed to Ampang tonight and if I happen to pick up a dandy young girl, I'll let you know. Arriverderci, i miei amici.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

A Feast 'supposedly' Fit for a King

In The Star, dated October 13, 2005, Malaysian Tourism Minister Datuk Dr Leo Michael Toyad says hotels are overcharging for the breaking of fast buffet during Ramadhan. He was commenting on a statement by the Malaysian Hoteliers Association that hotels would stick to their decision to charge RM100 or more for the breaking of fast buffet. And I quote, “I think consumers will have their opinion. Consumers have the right to make a choice. But again, I will say RM100 is too high” end quote.

Well, for today I went for such a buffet. It was at the PJ Hilton. Although it is quite a delightful evening, I’m gonna go with Michael Toyad on this one and agree with him that RM100 for a Ramadan buffet is a bit over the top. But I’m not really complaining because all of this was the treat of none other than the wacky but successful mat saleh Colin Edmonds. A close acquaintance of my father. And he does this every puasa month. I first attended it two years ago and I arrived late back then, probably being too engrossed in my work during my industrial training years to realize the time. And I even had the nerve to drive all the way from Setiawangsa to PJ. Last year I couldn’t make it because Ramadhan coincided with the final examinations so I was stuck at Tronoh. This year I decided to make amends by arriving at least a half an hour early. But fate had other ideas, once again. Since driving would be a suicidal option as I had discovered, I boarded the trusty Putra. Halfway through the journey the train stopped for a half hour because of a “pencerobohan trek” from KL Sentral to Bangsar. What are the odds, eh?

Now, returning to the Hilton, I managed to arrive just a little over 7, which is commendable. And the place was packed. I mean to the brim. It almost looks like a high-class pasar malam. One of the first downside of this RM100 dinner. The second downside is the food. There’s a whole lot of variety but it’s Malaysian themed, meaning you will find nasi ayam, beef rendang, ikan bakar, curry puffs and bubur lambuk. I mean, it’s good, being Malaysian and all but you can get these same stuff at a local pasar ramadhan. And I’m sure the cost is well below the RM100 mark. But of course, it’s the same scenario in all of the hotels throughout the Klang Valley. I don’t know where they do their research on Malaysian’s preference for food but for RM100 I want more than udang sambal tumis and a whole section dedicated to kerabu. I want lasagnas, pizzas, beef bacon, crème brule, cheesecakes, pies, a wide variety of pastries and 10 different flavors of Haagen Dazs ice cream. But one saving point at the Hilton was the presence of my favorite section – the grill. Thankfully they do serve lamb chops and roast beef. Slither them with black pepper and mushroom sauce and voila, I was a happy boy. But back at the table I was once again saddened. There’s not much room to maneuver because of the packed floor. One just has to make do.

So was it worth it? I’d say yes. But just because someone else was paying for it. It was a nice change of environment but had it been my pocket money, I’d be knocking my head on the table. If I had to make a choice, I’d prefer Chili’s. So my advice for this Ramadhan month – avoid the PJ Hilton.

Another interesting issue that caught my attention earlier tonight was the conversation my family had with Ms Geraldine, Colin’s wife. We were talking about marriage and she pointed out the changing trends that’s happening today. During our grandparents’ time, marriage was like during the age of 17 to 19. Our parents moved on to a slightly older age, which is about early 20s before deciding to get married. But nowadays, ask any 20 something man or woman and they will answer, “Please don’t ask me about marriage,”
It’s true isn’t it? Quite strangely so. Even I give that kind of answer when people approach me about it. Most people my age who I know are either married to his or her high-school sweetheart or their girlfriend or boyfriends during their university years. Others who are currently in a relationship are still happy with their partners but the question of marriage is a surreal one for them. I mean, most of us still live with our parents. I’m still being taken care of. How can I financially support another human being? It’s a frightful thought. And don’t start talking about love to me. Biggest misconception of all time. The one thing I do find these 20-something-let’s-get-married people have in common is that either the bride or the groom has wealthy parents. If they don’t, well I guess they’re just plain idiots. So unless you have an RM20 million trust fund locked up somewhere, marriage is not the wisest option right now. This, of course, mainly applies to us 20-something people who watched too many TV and Hollywood romantic movies.

Well, there’s my update. Not really a bombshell topic but I guess it’ll do. It’s another Friday. Another futsal night. Albeit being all the way at Sunway. It sucks not to have a steady source of income. Makes you lose out on the fun stuff living in the city. Money is what makes the world goes around you know. People who say money is the root of all evil don’t have any. Have you ever seen a man get upset when he receives his monthly paycheck? No. He has a big, fat fucking smile.

UTP Alumni is having a buka puasa dinner this 22nd. Would I be interested? Well, for starters I don’t know most of the people that will be attending. Second, most of them would probably arrive with their husbands or wives and may be even children, sporting designer clothes and Chanel handbags and tell stories about their recent job in Dubai and their holiday at Cape Verde. As for me, on the other hand, am partner-less, jobless and not exactly have Prince Williams’ looks to charm the crowd despite my shortcomings. So, no, I am certainly not interested. I would consider had it been an invitation involving just my batch but the alumni? I probably wouldn’t even take a raincheck.

Oh my, I’m turning quite the bitter person aren’t I? Well, my apologies. I do hope you have a good weekend. And for those who only read my blog during office hours, hey, guess what? It’s Monday again.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Ramadhan is here

A little over 2 years ago, I usually start my day by writing a chain mail to the lahanat community every time after sahur. Or was it laharnat? Anyway, I would write some overzealous story for the day until the sun comes out and that'll be my queue for the showers. Today, however, I find myself blogging. It's the new trend I suppose. Although the lahanat community, or the febeles group as it's now properly known, still exists. Despite not being the haphazard humdinger it used to be.

It's the first day of Ramadhan. The fasting month for Muslims all around the world. Basically that means there will be no more after-office-hours chilling sessions at Lotus for a good month or so (taking into consideration the Raya period).

Supposedly being a good Muslim boy, one would've thought that I had accompanied my father for the month's first terawih at the nearby surau. Well, I didn't. Instead I went for an hour of futsal at Ampang against some people Gambit had made contact with at work. We were quite effectively beaten. Or as the Malay saying goes "kena titik". It felt really shitty but come to think of it, it served us right.

Aah it's Subuh. Well people, have a nice opening day of puasa at the office. But I'm sure it's not something new for some of my lady friends who have been busy ganti-ing their previous puasa for the past 2 weeks or so. Good day and good luck.

Monday, October 03, 2005

The Teluk Batik Trip

The only chance of a Monday morning to make any sense is to have a blasting weekend before that and the whole of Monday off to ponder about it. Fortunately enough, I happen to fall into that category this morning.

The weekend started off on Friday night with a trip to Bangsar with the UTP lads of Din, Big Show, Mon, Hadi and Ijam. Din was kindly enough to treat us with some western dining to serve as a purpose to have a small gathering and catching up. And it worked. When there’s food, it always works with guys. Soon after, we, except for Din and Ijam, decided to hit a round of bowling at Cosmic Bowl Mid Valley. After a few lucky bowls towards the end, I managed to scrape second place of 85 points after initially occupying last place at the beginning. Hadi took first with a total of 117 points. He obviously had practice sessions with his girlfriend. For the rest of us, it was probably the second time in our lives to be at a bowling alley. I know it was for me.

We find ourselves at the parking lot at around 12.30 am. All of them decided to head home but I find midnight still too early to call it a night. Fortunately, Gambit called for another Winning 11 tourney at my place. Well, game on.

At around 2 am, Ridhu, Gambit and 2lang arrived and it wasn’t long before we find ourselves engrossed in front of the TV screen with joypads in our hands. We had 2 tournaments of 4 teams and I ended up 3rd and 4th respectively. My Barcelona notched up a win, a draw and a lost while my Totti-led Roma drew one and lost the rest. This was obvious proof that my Winning 11 skills still need a lot of work. Our sessions ended at around 6 am and only then did I felt it was time to draw the curtains to a close. Although, it’s already a brand new day for most people in the world. And since I made a promise to go to Perak that very afternoon, my sleeping time was really limited.

I managed to get 4 hours of sleep and by the time I woke up, the house was already buzzing for the Taman Harmonis housewives gathering which my mother will be hosting this time around. It’s a fortnightly meeting I think and my house is the ‘lucky’ candidate this weekend. So my mother was busy preparing laksa, apple pie and fruit pudding among others. It made me feel guilty somehow for me to leave the scene to go brouhaha somewhere in Perak. But then again, I am not the kind of guy who likes to go around breaking promises. So, as I left home, depriving my mother of moral support and a helping son, another journey awaits me.

My destination was Teluk Batik. A girl was having a barbeque party by the beach to celebrate her birthday and I was cordially invited. That girl goes by the name of Fira. I don’t usually attend birthday parties so far away but a beach party sounds too enticing.

So there I was, heading to Teluk Batik. But I wasn’t heading alone. I’ll be making a slight detour to pick up a passenger to keep me company during the journey. But she was more than a passenger. I received my invitation through her. And she is Aritha. Ah yes, just me and Aritha. Sadly though, we will be the only invited guests coming from outside of Perak. The rest of the Febeles group couldn’t make it. Either they are living too far away or had other matters to attend to. The fact that it was Aritha who invited me was one of the reasons that I am willing to travel so far out to attend a birthday party. The sound of her voice tells you how badly she needed a break from the city life. And who am I to be if not to realize that wish of hers? Back to that familiar scenario, aren’t we? Oh yes, Faizad Male Escorts, at your service.

Our journey to Perak was, well, I wouldn’t say uneventful. To start off, she did give me a little bit of stick for arriving at her place an hour late. I had to make a last minute visit to the local grocery store to pick up some onions for my mother just when I was about to leave the house. I even had my RM2 ala cowboy hat on. Okay, it’s not really mine. It’s Sasa’s which I borrowed for, I don’t know, maybe more than a year now. Anyway, initially I thought this trip will take about 4 hours. But we did it in 5 because, due to some persistent persuasion I had succumbed to Aritha’s idea of being a little bit ‘adventurous’. So after a brief at Tapah’s R&R where we grabbed some food and at the same time satisfied Aritha’s craving for ‘mee kari’, we took the Tapah exit and hoping to find a short cut to Teluk Batik, bypassing Gopeng and Batu Gajah, and coming out through Sitiawan by the means of Tapah Road. But as expected, things don’t always go according to plan because at one point, we did find ourselves unintentionally heading back to Kuala Lumpur. We only realize we were thrown off-course by the time we realize we were driving through Bidor, which indicated we were moving South rather than North-West. But we managed to recover our bearings but we never did found Tapah Road. All this should trigger my male genes with annoyance and frustration but surprisingly, I find the experience quite interesting. The highway does provide a quick and efficient traveling mean but it’s also very dull. Meanwhile, the old roads have more life to it. Along the way we came across small villages, some paddy fields and acres of oil palm plantations, which is the only mind-numbing side to this ‘adventurous’ gig.

We finally reached our destination at around 8 pm. By then it was obviously too dark to have a dip in the sea. But that didn’t stop us. Although I myself only dared to dip my feet, people like Izzu and Aritha still couldn’t resist to go all the way albeit the closure of public facilities to provide fresh water for rinsing purposes since sunset. This may sound funny but standing by the seaside in the dark while small waves rolled against the beach is a calming experience. The cool breeze only adds to the delight. It’s just you, the sea, a few small time fishermen in their boats a little far out, the stars and the moon.

We finally had our barbeque feast later on and the usual chit-chatting that ensues. I kept quiet because most of time I couldn’t understand what they’re talking about. I guess being the only straight guy in the group tends to result that way. But nevertheless, their conversation can be interesting and fun, and I sometimes find myself laughing for no apparent reason.

As we drift later into the night, the plan was to slowly pack up and head back to UTP. A good 50 minute journey too. But, almost half-expectedly, everyone except for a few suddenly felt too malas to endure the long trip and probably too buoyed by the ocean breeze that a new plan to spend the night at the beach suddenly popped out of the blue. To me the plan sounds outrageous but exciting nevertheless. To be fair, my 4 hours of sleeping time the night before and the long drive from KL also began to take its toll on me. I didn’t think I was 100% fit for the drive back to UTP. So while most of the group head out to find a place to spend the night, I and a few others stayed back at ‘camp’. But since mosquitoes began to attack us relentlessly, we decided to pack things up while waiting the other group’s return. “It’s easier to kemas when there are fewer people around,”
I guess that’s true. But when I said ‘we’, I didn’t really include ‘me’ in that paraphrase. Because I didn’t know what to do that could help. They look so effective cleaning up that I was afraid of being a nuisance by just trying to lend a hand. But now when thinking about it, that does sounds rather selfish and foolish of me.

Anyhow, after, I think close to half an hour, the venture group returned and bearing, I suppose good news. They found an available chalet nearby. So it’s done then, we’re spending the night.

The chalet is nothing elaborate. There are a few beds, an air-conditioning unit, a dressing table and a side table. No TV, no closet. But it’s sufficient. We just want to have a place to sleep. But the funny thing is, nobody except for Aritha and me were properly prepared to have a sleepover. We had our toiletries and extra clothes with us but for the rest, what they had was what they were wearing. But I didn’t think that deterred them much. Which now leads me to Ezy.

Ezy is the other straight girl apart from Aritha in that group that night although she had to detest the notion that she’s a lesbian all night long just because she had short hair. Ezy is quite the lovely girl. I’ll give her a 7 out of 10. Fair complexion and a figure that would turn any man’s head. Although she does have a rasping personality. All evening, she had a baby-T and a burgundy pareo on. If this wasn’t already a delight to see, imagine my gaping expression when she asked me for my extra shorts as she had nothing else to wear for the night. At that point only a fool would turn such a request down. To see your shorts on a bodyline as good as Ezy’s would only make you think, “Oh God, that looks incredibly sexy”. I had this silly grin on me throughout the night. If only nights like these would come more often. The only downside was that I didn’t get to sleep beside her.

Come morning, the other outrageous plan to go to Pangkor was scrapped because everyone woke up at 11 am. Surprise, surprise. So we only had time to pick ourselves up, check-out and had lunch at Lumut. I haven’t been to Lumut for quite some time and it’s pleasant to see that the new jetty is in place and running. It poses a stark improvement. It looks better and proper. And I think the bustling weekend crowd gladly appreciates it.

We head back to UTP at around 3 pm. I decided against returning straight to KL because it was just too warm for a long drive it’s uncomfortable. Besides, how bad can an afternoon at UTP can be? While I dropped off Aritha at V3 for her to grab a drink with some guy and head to Fira’s later on, I made my way to V4. I was walking towards Izzu’s place when I thought of Ara. As I dialed her number, I could only hope she’s in UTP. It turned out I wasn’t so lucky. She was all the way at Shah Alam and would only probably be at UTP by nightfall. I was hoping to be on the highway on my way back come by then so that’s scuppered. I try to think of someone else, preferably a hot looking girl that I could ask for an evening drink but to no avail. There’s no one else. I thought of Siti Nabilah but fat chance of that happening. Well, I guess a chat with Izzu would do. And that was what I ended up doing. Although Arip was also present. Finally someone I can talk about man stuff with.

It’s about 6.30 pm that I asked Arip to be whisked around UTP since being stuck indoors seems boring. So off we went to the field for the Inter-Village Sports Tournament. Funny, UTP looks deserted and I asked Arip why. He said that most of the students just received their tri-monthly scholarships last Thursday so chances they are throwing cash all around Ipoh. Bummer. There I was hoping for a crowd and yet there was none.

Upon arrival at the field it struck me that that was the first time I set foot on the new field since its upgrading. It now even has 2 proper futsal courts. Very impressive though I doubt it’s enough. Futsal is the new crave nowadays and 2 just ain’t enough. But matter suddenly turned worse when the event had already ended by the time Arip and I reached there. What was left was the prize-giving ceremony. Well, it’s better than nothing so we stayed. As we chilled I noticed how peaceful UTP is. There’s this huge open field, there’s the blowing wind, clear skies and laughter in the background. There are no skyscrapers in sight and the speeding vehicles in the distance are more visual than auditory nuisance. Being so long away from UTP I didn’t realize what I was missing. The breather from the hectic life of KL suddenly felt so welcoming. Freshmans won the overall title (again, not surprisingly) but to me chilling at the sides was the highlight.

As the time indicates way past 7, I guess it’s time to bid UTP au revoir. If I’m lucky, I could make it home just in time for Liverpool vs. Chelsea. So I messaged Aritha telling to get ready but she suggested we have dinner first. Hmm, I guess that’ll be fine. I was feeling hungry too anyway. Maybe I’ll just catch Final Score. Besides, it’s probably going to be another dull 0-0.

So we had our dinner at the place in front of UTP’s main entrance. The place where they once had this awesome nasi telur bungkus. I said ‘once’ because it’s now no longer awesome. It’s still quite good but it used to be better. And then, while we having dinner, the most unexpected thing happened. Siti Nabilah walked in. It was like the most refreshing view I had in a long time. She no longer had that permed hair of hers. It’s now back to her long straight. But still beautiful nonetheless. She wasn’t having dinner there but just ‘tapau’ing. With her jeans and t-shirt accompanying her black-framed glasses, I’m guessing she’s preparing for a good night of studying. She’s a brilliant student. Last time I checked, her CGPA was in the first-class zone. Brain and beauty. The 2B criteria. Just awesome. Of course, I didn’t have the nerve to walk up to her and strike a conversation. I was in such a mess I was in no condition to make a good first impression. Looking at a mirror, I would probably run away from myself. So I ended up just appreciating from afar. So close yet so far. Miss so-out-of-my-league. Well, the bare sight of her is the only thing I could hope for. Twice I’ve been back to UTP this year and on both occasion I get to catch a glimpse of her. I would deem that as very lucky. Striking a conversation would amount to a pandemonium. Seeing her drive off in her grey Kancil would probably be the last time I’ll see her. Unless Lady Luck has other ideas.

After dinner, it was definitely time to head home. It’s already 9.30 pm. Anfield will be missed. We had our goodbyes and we hit the open roads once again. This time there’s no adventurous gig. I just wanna get home with no surprises. And since Aritha made slight fun of me earlier for driving too slow on the way back from Lumut, I had to step on the throttle a bit more. Which in turn capitates me more of my conversation ability. As you’d probably know, guys really have trouble multi-tasking, especially when it involves driving. The point I was driving slower was so that I can have a decent conversation. And since I wasn’t a big help then imagine my condition now. That fact that it was raining didn’t help either. So it ended up once again with Aritha doing all the talking while I could only do the listening. It annoyed her, of course but what to do? To me, just having her in the passenger seat already gave me much comfort but I could understand her frustration.

We reached Bandar Utama close to midnight. Aritha was in a slight hurry to get into the house as she has to go to work the next day. For me, I was just tired from the driving but felt personally pleased that Valerie had been a good girl throughout the journey.

As I watched Aritha walked into her sister’s house, I couldn’t help but appreciate how much I enjoyed Aritha’s company. I wish there could be more occasions such as these. Breathing in the silent air I dialed Gambit’s number, hoping for another chilling session. But she’s with Mawar. Haih, Mawar, Mawar. I guess there’s nothing left but to head back home myself.

The half hour trip back was unusually silent without Aritha’s voice constantly entertaining me with her stories. Thankfully the road was clear so there wasn’t much hassle with the traffic. Overall I think it was quite a successful trip. I had fun and that’s the most important part. And I have the whole of Monday to recover. Lucky me. Oh by the way, Chelsea trounced Liverpool at Anfield 4-1. As a consolation, I managed to catch Geremi’s goal just in time.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Indonesian Beauties

Look at that. From the left, Ratu Felisha, Claudia Cintya Bella and Masayu Arastasyu. Absolutely gorgeous. Indonesian actresses, currently in Malaysia in conjuction with the 50th Asia Pacific Film Festival. To be honest, I've never heard of them before and how I wish I did. I think this reiterates the notion of how Indonesians can be of stunning beauty. I may be a less patriotic but right now I couldn't think of any 3 Malaysian actresses that could match this mesmerizing ensemble. Sure we do have some beauties but most of them are originally models who turned out to be not-so-good actresses. I don't know about these girls either but on presence alone, I'd give them pretty high marks. And very beautiful names to go along with them, don't you think?

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

My 'Sarawakian' Tennis Star Friend

I love airports. Especially KLIA. I guess it transcends from my love with commercial aircrafts. I’ve been fascinated by them ever since I was a child when I first lay my eyes on them. Even though you could only catch glimpses of the Boeings and the Airbuses at KLIA, every trip there is always an event for me. So when Jes asked me to send her to the airport earlier today, that little boy inside of me once again sprang to life.

Jes had been on a sports tournament trip, bearing under the name of Petronas to an Asean Oil and Gas Tournament. She plays tennis, of course, and guess where she went. Jakarta, Indonesia. Quite a fancy trip for a tennis tournament, don’t you think? Kudos to her but God, I am so awfully jealous. An all expense trip to Jakarta. Would you pass it? I think not.

Anyway, she got third. Commendable for her efforts despite being beaten by an elderly Indonesian which may well be over twice her age. Don’t believe me? Go ahead and ask Jes about it. She wouldn’t give a pleasant answer, I’ll give you that. She’s totally pissed about it.

Anyhow, she just got back to Malaysia yesterday and staying at her sister’s at Kota Damansara. Since every one else is busy managing their professional lives, I was the only viable option for company. So I was to pick her up form her sister’s at 10, have a supposedly glorious breakfast, drive her to the airport and sing to her Kumbaya while waving a white handkerchief with dreary eyes as she departs through the boarding gate. But things don’t always turn out as you hoped it would.

I have never been to Kota Damansara (why would I? I don’t know anyone there) but based on Jes’ sister’s considerably easy guide, I thought, this shouldn’t be a hassle. I could make it in no time. Well, I didn’t. As a matter of fact I got lost in Kota Damansara – for one and a half hours. How I managed to do that still baffles me. It drove Jes absolutely bonkers. I finally met her 10 minutes before 12. The fact that her phone is barred didn’t help either. We weren’t actually late but the glorious breakfast had to be skipped. So off we went and along the way I asked Jes all about her trip to Jakarta. And she told how Jakarta women are absolutely gorgeous and the motorists there are literally out of their mind it made Chow Kit Road laughable. And she also told me how she fell ill the night the rest of the squad went out partying at HardRock. Poor girl. But apart from that, I think she enjoyed herself.

After checking-in, it was time for our “glorious breakfast” which has now turned into grabbing a nibble at Café Marche. And for the first time I realized what awfully large croissant sandwiches they serve there. There were so massive I bet you can have a whole chicken as a filling. It frightened me as far as not to order them.

After having a few sips of orange juice and guava and enjoying our sweetened pastries all the while talking about life, it was time for Jes to leave for her 2 o’clock flight to Bintulu. I didn’t sing Kumbaya nor did I have a white handkerchief with me but I do have love and gave her a hug. It is always sad every time to see Jes leave. My meetings with her have always been brief lately. As I watched her descended down the escalator, I wondered when will be the next time I’ll see her. She said she’ll come to KL come Raya. I just hope I’m in KL too at that time.

As I walked away and mentally listing the pros of having a stewardess as a wife, I came across a sign that read ‘Viewing Area’. Every time before this, the people that I came with, be it family or friends, they are always in a rush. Coming and leaving. Which left me no opportune moment to visit the Viewing Area. Now, with me alone, what better chance I have? So in I went and it was a sight to behold. The tarmac of the local flight gates were presented in front of me and farther out is the satellite building for international flights. To the sides are the 4 giant runaways, 2 on each side. It was a momentously majestic view. Strangely though, only a few people were around. Almost deserted. There are even airport staff catching a few winks between shifts on the row of chairs. But who cares? Let them be. What intrigued me was, if I could see the gates for the local flights then I can surely see Jes’ airplane. Sure enough, a walk across the hall brought me into view the 737 parked at gate B2. I decided to grab a seat and stay with her. In the meantime I watched the airport people refuel the jets, load them with food, luggage and even pets. And how I love seeing the buggies pushed the aircrafts out of the parking area as it has been prepped for take-off.

Jes’ plane moved out onto the tarmac a little bit past 2. Even then, a whole lot of other planes were waiting in line for take-off. So her plane only came onto the runaway around 2.15 pm. Only when the plane hits full throttle and lifts its nose into the clouds above did I wave Jes a final goodbye. The airport suddenly felt a little emptier.

As I made my way back, a thought occurred to me. I’m becoming quite the escort man. Think about it. Minus the sex, of course. Every time a friend of mine needs company in the middle of the week, chances are my name would probably pop up. Because they know I’m practically free all the time. I’m not sure if that’s a good or a bad thing. Anyway, it enlightens me every time it does happen. This Jes favour is one of many. Sometimes when Sasa takes a Wednesday, it is usually me who accompanies her to the movies. Although, it has to be her choice of the movie. When Tomok was admitted to the hospital, I was one of the first to visit him. And it became my duty to ensure everyone that despite everything, Tomok still hasn’t lost his sense of humour.

Saint? Rescuer? Nah, I just happen to be available.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Midnight Rambling Session

It’s 1.05 am on the 27th of September, 2005. If you’re awake at this time and happen to glance over KL Tower you will come across something quite interesting. The people over there has apparently shut down all its lights, except for white flickering ring around the top and a huge light cast, going up and down along the pillar. One look and you’ll immediately think that there’s a large UFO hovering over KL. I did. But of course, that’s not true because a closer look will reveal that it’s only the KL Tower. I don’t know whether those responsible for the lighting of the tower meant it to be as a joke to the Malaysian public, to themselves, or maybe the real UFO’s (?). (X-Files theme song playing in the background). But one thing though, it definitely looks cool. Once you’re certain it’s not a spacecraft of another life form, attempting to disintegrate the people of Earth.

It’s a Guy Thing has achieve another milestone today. It has surpassed the 2000 hits mark! Yeay~! It’s good to know that there are regular readers out there for my blog. Although some popular blogs don’t even see 2000 hits as anything significant. They get that almost everyday. But I’m not complaining. 2000 in 3 months is sufficient for me.

Winning Eleven 9. An absolutely beautiful game. I used to thought that the FIFA Soccer franchise is THE soccer simulation game but now, I might not even bother purchasing FIFA 2006. But truth be said, I still suck at it. I have friends who grew up with the game long before I even heard of it. So naturally they are sodding good at it. For me, who had began his interest when the 7th edition was released, my playing skills are still not up to mark. In one game my Spain was trounced 5-1 by England. Pathetic.

Earlier today I went for jalan-jalan around KLCC and I came across Siti Sarah and I was perplex-ly surprised because she looked so fair. Which in turn made her suddenly very attractive. So I began to wonder. Does being on TV makes your skin complexion look darker? Then I remember seeing Sarimah in real life and she too looked way fairer than she is on the screen. So maybe it’s true. But it seemed to have no effect on Nora Danish. Either that or I was too intoxicated by her fragrant smell to notice.

That’s it for this edition of Midnight Rambling Session. If I’m up to it, a Breakfast Show will ensue but that’s unlikely. Maybe Wednesday morning. Oh maybe not either, because it’s a European week. Oh yes. Gentlemen, get ready for a battle at Anfield. So that means the next show would probably be next week, which will also mark the beginning of Ramadhan. I hope you girls have all patched up last year’s ‘hutang’s.

Till next time, good night and good luck.

Monday, September 26, 2005

The Breakfast Show

I have gained a new perspective on marriage. Apparently it’s not just about love and sex. Well, it is about love and sex but there are other big issues to consider. One of which is children. This topic first came about when my brother and I had a dine-in with an uncle at Kenny Roger’s at Mid Valley who came all the way from Kota Bharu to attend a meeting. He said, “Nikoh awa skik. Toksoh tunggu pah 30. Siye anok (Kahwin awal skit. Jangan tunggu selepas 30. Kesian anak,”. Translation – get married early. Don’t wait til your 30. Pity the children.
Or more specifically, don’t follow his footsteps. He got married in his early 30’s and his eldest is only entering his third-year at the university. And he has about 5 more little brothers and sisters behind him. Considering my uncle is entering his 50’s and retirement is staring right in his face, that could prove to be a financial burden later on, among the least.

Yesterday, my aunt Melor also had something interesting to say. “When your child hits 10-years-old, you have to decide how old you want to be,”
And his husband jokingly added, “You also have to give the chance to your mother to be ‘young’ enough to become a grandmother. Easier for you to have someone taking care of the children should you be away or something,”
That being said, getting married at 40 and having your eldest aged 10 when your 50, is not at all a clever thing to do.

All this while, when a friend had set a deadline of getting married, no matter what, by the time he reaches 28, had me puzzled. Some even set a timeline of getting a husband in 3 years time, which means finding a suitor and getting engaged during that timeframe. That had me baffled. I mean, what’s the rush? I didn’t get it. Now, I do. That one word – children. That’s the rush.

Marriage is not just about being in love and getting laid. Children has to be a very big concern as well. Unless you don’t want children but who wouldn’t? Basically, we’re just mammals. It’s our instinct to reproduce. Or at least having fun trying.

So it seems that getting married before you reach 30 is the viable thing to do. Unless I want some future regrets, that is the huge master plan. Find a wife, get married, have children. Ain’t that just grand?

Thursday, September 22, 2005


I wish one day when a girl asks me, "What's that on your neck?", I could answer by saying, "I bit myself shaving"
And when she says, "That's why God invented turtlenecks," and I would say, "No, that's why God invented Charlene (or whatever girl's name that can be mentioned)"
Unfortunately, this thing on my chin is a real cut. And I have a blood-spotted tissue to go along with it.

The Breakfast Show

Answering a phone call that rudely awakens you in the morning is probably one of the most annoying things that can happen that one could think of. But if the person one the other line is a fine looking woman then it changes the whole story. Suddenly that call becomes the most welcoming. The fact that she too was in bed making that call makes it kinda sexy. Especially with both of us having that scruffy morning voice when we were wishing our ‘hello’s and ‘good morning’s. I usually get those kind of calls from my mother every time I find myself waking up someplace else other than my home. Be it Bangi, Ampang or even Tomok’s house near Sri Gombak.

Well, it’s another boo-tiful morning. Another fresh new start. To sum it up, the trip to UKM last nite wasn’t really cantik, menarik nor tertarik and definitely no bombs. My suspicions were unfortunately confirmed. They are no hot chicks in UKM. Well, they are a few but of course, they are either stuck with the wrong guy or just plain snobbish. They probably have this perception of these stall people being some sort of low-life creatures. Little do they know how each of this hip and savvy-looking stallers selling nasi briyani possesses a bachelor’s degree in their own right. Cewah.

For today I was looking for a date but I have to run a few errands with Cipoi. We have to first to Batu Caves for something about his EP for his band DTR. Then we have to move to Shah Alam to check out tickets for this Sunday’s FA Cup Final.

That’s all for today’s Breakfast Show. Join me again next time. Daa.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Midnight Rambling Session

Have you ever stopped to think? I practically do it all the time. The toilet is my favorite place. Though I do spent a lot of time thinking onboard the LRT. But the cruelest time has to be when I try to go to bed early. When I’m forcing myself to sleep, I’d prefer my mind to be blank as to ease the transition to dreamland but you see, the human mind is one naughty thing. It is when you’re most comfortable and relaxed that it’s in its best form to go into overdrive. It refuses to shut down. A few days ago, I was lying on my back, staring into the ceiling when my mind keeps popping questions more than it could produce answers. My range of thoughts linger from sports cars to my fantasy football team and how on earth could I get a date with Nora Danish, which I now confirm is virtually impossible.

Smell the roses they say. But since this is Malaysia, it’s practically difficult to find any within a 5 mile radius.

Do you know what’s been troubling me lately? Women my age. I used to view them as harmless but recently I have a whole new perspective of them. They scare me.

Women my age wants to get married, like as soon as possible. And if they are not, chances are, they are already married. Some even have babies. Thank God I was in an all-boys school, if not some of my former classmates would have personally experienced labour. And that is a petrifying thought. I didn’t expect this to happen for at least another 2 years. Wait, I think I said that 2 years ago. Wow, now that’s troubling. Talk about memory deficiency and time lapse. Well, I couldn’t blame them. Apart from the fact that all of their other friends are getting married would explain the drive to join the bandwagon. But the most astounding reason behind this, as I found out recently is biological. It’s been found that the best age for women to give birth is when before they hit 30. Not meaning that above 30 is bad, just that below 30 is better. So if one plans to have 4 kids and humans could usually produce one offspring a year, that means they have to get married, well you do the maths. Man, all this women talk is tiring. Let’s cut this midnight rambling session short.

I will be at UKM tomorrow, chilling at a friend’s store who’s selling nasi briyani sempena UKM’s Pesta Konvokesyen. My motivation to go all the way to Bangi is to catch a few glimpses of UKM’s chicks. Generally they are not that hot but hey, I have nothing else better to do.

The air is cold. And deathly silent. fin.

Friday, September 16, 2005


Korang sure penah tgk horoscope kat friendster tu kan? Lately ni asik pantek je prediction die. Smlm time aku nak gi amik result die suh aku cari "comfort in chaos". Arini die kata ni lak - Double-check your accounts --your bank may have made a boo-boo in your favor. Lancau kan? Tau aa bank account aku ade bape sen je, lagi nak buat fun of aku. Dem yu la horoscope!

Thursday, September 15, 2005


The day of reckoning. Today would be the day for the brief visit to PAAC. A cold dawn welcomes me to the world. As if a grey mist is being uplifted while a cool, soft breeze accompanies a light glow from the horizon. The sun is coming out. The sounds of nature excitedly announcing the new day. The city itself is awakening after a quiet slumber. Even the neighbor’s cat has joined the party, as it tread gingerly across the tiled roof.

It’s a brand new day, even though it will be very nerve-wrecking for me later on. And I can’t believe I’m blogging at 6 o’clock in the morning.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Cold Feet

On Monday morning, I was awoken by the sound of my cellphone. It was Quincy. When it’s Quincy, it could only meant one thing – the results are out. When I hung up moments later, my suspicions were confirmed. I have cold feet ever since.

I could be standing inside PAAC, having a conversation with her in less than 50 minutes if I wanted to. But I chose not. I keep avoiding it. I woke up late. I watched TV. I played computer games. I even finished a Dan Brown book in one and a half days. After a solemn Champions League night, I think the time has come. It’s momentously disturbing. The revelation could either make or break my day. No, make that years or even months. But knowing me, I maybe even delay the trip for yet another day. Well, I do have the new season of The O.C that I haven't watched. That would take a good one hour to take my mind off this thing. As mush as I try to experience it right now, I could never quite grip the meaning of 'ignorance is bliss'. It's foolish but bliss? Chocolate sprinkled, whipped cream with cherry on top banana split is bliss but ignorance? Memo me on that, will ya?

Friday, September 09, 2005

The Unrequited Love

Last Wednesday I forgot where I parked my car at a shopping mall. It took me 15 minutes to realize that I was at the wrong basement. Valerie was parked another level below. I am not sure whether that is a sign that I haven’t been to a shopping mall in a long time or is it because of the woman trouble that I’ve been having lately. Yes, woman trouble. Me, of all people. Well, it can’t be the former because I could remember quiet vividly I went to Suria last week. Although not in my own car but on a friend’s ride but I DID remember where HE parked. So most unfortunately it could be the latter.

I swore to myself to never have these disturbing thoughts again. Well, not until I got a decent career going on first. But it seems fate has other ideas (doesn’t it always).

So here’s the situation, but first, let me ask you people something. Do crushes have a timeline? I mean, how long does a crush, is a crush? Because, in a dictionary, it says that a crush is a “strong but often brief feeling of love for someone”. Should I highlight ‘brief’ or ‘often’? How brief is ‘brief’? A day? A week? A month? How about years? Because that is my case – years. Some find that hard to believe, including me. But I’ve managed, during all this time, somehow.

I guess this is what unemployment does to you. Your mind wanders off to ridiculous thoughts. Out of boredom, out of curiosity, and certainly out of stupidity.

Okay, so here’s the situation. I have a crush on this girl, love, whatever. Point is, look up any romantic stories and they will say “Just do it! Confess your love to her” or something like that. And they will back it up with something like, “You have nothing lose” or “What have you got to lose?”. Well, apart from rejection I have another thing to worry about – the price of friendship. I saw something similar last night on One Tree Hill and it raises the question whether you would sacrifice friendship for a relationship. Rationally, I would vote for friendship because it’s a better long term investment. Having said that, it’s not a decision that is easy to live with. Sure when you’re out with your friends you say to yourself, why should I even be bothered with a relationship? I’m happy as I am. But sometimes that feeling does get to you. Like the last weekend. I was bored out of my mind. I had no plans and no one to chill with. It was during these times to you begin to wonder what is she doing right now. And you could only wish that she was beside you. Even if it’s just sitting on the couch in front of the TV watching the Discovery Channel.

You think that’s bad. Well, the fact that she’s seeing someone just made it a lot worse doesn’t it? As someone who has a crush on her, I should be broken-hearted and filled with jealousy (which I am) but I can’t display these emotions because as a friend I have to be supportive and happy for her. Smile and “understand” everytime she blew me off for her boyfriend. Once, I even gave suggestions how to spend a romantic evening with her significant other. Oh God, I even weave my own sad story. Why do I even bother telling people about this.

Anyway, let’s end this. This blog, I mean. For this entry, that is. I’m not gonna quit blogging for heaven’s sake. Valerie’s good. She got a new engine for her belly. A used one but much better than the previous. I had an awesome Merdeka celebrations. Another one of my basi stories. I went out for 24 hours. I left home at 11 am on 30th August and came home 11 am on the 31st. Most of those time I spent chillin’. At one point, even at a parking lot. About 4 hours of sleep, 2 hours of eating and the rest, talking and making obscene jokes. A high school friend held a barbeque feast at his home at Bukit Antarabangsa which I had a lovely supper and quite a fantastic view of the city when the clock struck midnight. And nope, no UFOs were visible this time. Although I do think that the fireworks display were last elaborate than last year’s. Cutting costs, I suppose.
Puteri Shariza got married a while back and although I received a personalized invitation, and had it delivered to me personally, I didn’t go. Just because I had nobody to teman me to Teluk Intan. I’m feeling absolutely guilty about it. Nak jumpe Puteri selepas ni pun rase cam segan. Do you know that in Malaysia, an average of 20% of invited guests do not attend to the kenduri they were invited to? Yes, a wedding planner told me that. So the next time you receive a kenduri invitation, do try your best to attend. Even though I just broke that rule only 2 weeks ago.
Apart from that, everything’s fine. Just that I’m craving for a date but I don’t have the financial resources to do so. That’s the only downside about being unemployed. Other than that, it’s fabulous. Especially when you want to go to the movies. Totally deserted. Even at the busiest of places. Well, till next time, arriverderci.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

The Kinabalu Trip

Okay, now here’s the basi story – the Kinabalu trip. I intended to write something earlier but I guess the enthusiasm just wasn’t there. If it was, I’d probably channeled it elsewhere. Anyway, here’s the light version of it.

What made the journey TO Kinabalu so interesting is because the day I was suppose to fly to Kinabalu, which was the Monday after my convocation, I was still in Tronoh that morning. I just woken up at 7 am and I was suppose to be at Sabah before sunset. My flight was at 3 pm. That’s the goal. Kinda daunting isn’t it? But not exactly impossible. But slip in a car breakdown in the middle of the equation and suddenly all hell broke loose. Yes, Valerie had a breakdown. 8 months of trouble-free service and then suddenly she decided to go bonkers. It was the crankshaft, yet again. At Gua Tempurung, on the North-South Highway, of all places. On the day I was in a rush, of all times. One can only imagine my despair and anguish. I was looking at missing the trip entirely. And that, was really painful.

And so came the tow truck and everything. The plan was I was supposed to arrive home before 11 am and then the whole family would push off to KLIA and would arrive there around noon all spick and span, checking-in and have a nice walk to the departure gate. Since this unfortunate incident had happened, at 12.30 pm, I only managed to get as far as Rawang. The panic button had long been pressed. I arrived in Gombak at 1.30 pm. I have to put my ass in an airplane seat in under in an hour and a half. I was already late.

A guy was suppose to send me home from the workshop and I had to drive the Pajero to the Taman Melati LRT station, park it, take the train to KL Sentral, take the 2 o’clock KLIA Ekspress and presumably be there by 2.30 pm, just nice for a last-minute check-in. Exciting? Only if I could make it.

So, I had only 3 minutes to pack some clean underwear, no time to even glance at lunch and I arrived at Melati at 1.33 pm. A few more anxious moments and I DID NOT make the 2 o’clock KLIA Ekspress train. So I had to board the 2.15 train. Now things has just gotten tighter. The check-in counter closes by 2.45 pm. The train and I were suppose to arrive at KLIA 2 minutes before that. Well, I only arrive at KLIA at 2.50 pm because the bloody train had to stop somewhere in Serdang. But miraculously, my mother managed to check-in for me after some desperate persuasion and the whole family end up running for gate A5. We were all huffing and puffing and I got leg cramps but we made it in the end. Yes, ladies and gents, we made it. We were the last passengers to arrive and they were some unfriendly stares but we made it.

But what’s all that had to do with Steve Martin and John Candy? Well, it was on the KLIA Ekspress that I remembered a movie titled ‘Planes, Trains and Automobiles’ in which those two Hollywood actors starred in that had Steve Martin in a familiar position that I was. Trying to reach his family for the holidays in time by means of various types of transportation – planes, trains and automobiles. Valerie, KLIA Ekspress and Air Asia, in reverse order for me. The only time that had me chuckling until I managed to buckle myself on board the 737. I could finally relax and decide what would be my first meal of the day (that is, whatever crap they have on board until I can get a decent one upon arrival). The plane bursts to full throttle on the runaway and took off as I kissed au revoir to Sepang as it disappeared under the clouds.
I stayed at the Pacific Sutera at Sutera Harbour and it is such a momentously beautiful place. It’s a 5 star hotel so I was every bit pleased. They say Tanjung Aru is equally good but I didn’t have the chance to check it out so I wouldn’t know.

The only disappointing thing about the place is that it only had a small portion of the beach to offer. So small the space that nobody even bothered to take a dip in the saltwater sea. Most of them just prefer to chill at the pool, which was fantastic as expected. It even has Koi ponds with little bridges over them in tiny parks scattered in the surrounding area. But what impressed me most is the marina. It looks like a smaller version of Monte Carlo to me (as if I actually been there). I was so jakun, admiring all those delightful little yachts. There was no 300-ft, Abramovich-esque yachts but nevertheless equally enjoyable watching them. With an added touch of some sea breeze you could only wonder when you’ll be able to afford one of those things.

The city of Kinabalu – well, I must admit I had high hopes for this experience but was left virtually unimpressed. It’s a city, yes, but more structurally rather than geographically. It does accommodate some moderately-high buildings but the span, goodness me, not that big I’m afraid. I have been to larger townships in my lifetime. I think backpackers would be incredibly surprised at how fast they can cover the whole city area. Even I, with a bit of determination, can cover the whole city, end to end, in less than a few hours. But why go through the trouble, right? I only had the energy to bask in my arrogance. So my plan of spending a whole day ‘exploring the city’ had ended by midday. I visited every so-called shopping complexes in KK and none of them can even beat Alpha Angle at Wangsa Maju in terms on coolness. The only cool thing at KK was the waterfront which I spent about an hour watching a few local women catching small fishes using bamboo rods. It was really fascinating. They must doing that for everyday as a source of livelihood. Makes you feel guilty for every fish that you membazir at home just because they taste tak sedap. These people work so hard that even fishes the size of handphones can be a source of income.

I continued walking around the waterfront while my brother tries to bargain some pearl bracelets from the Filipino Bazaar. It is such a calming place, that is until nightfall.

At nightfall (that’s 6.30 pm for the people here), the waterfront bursts into life. It was like a pasar malam, with an ethnic Borneo touch. People were selling all kinds of different foodstuff and even seashells but my favorite is the area behind the Filipino Bazaar where some hawkers set up dining tables and offer fresh ikan bakar from catches of the day. You just pick which ones of the offerings that you want, take a plastic stool, have a seat while they put a plate of nasi putih in front of you, a plastic glass beside a jug of ais kosong and a jar of sambal. Wait a few minutes until your fish arrives and bon appetite! Old school dining. Makan selekeh-selekeh pun tak kisah because, honestly, I don’t think anyone bothered. Sure the complimentary breakfast at the hotel is awesome but this too is equally satisfying. If you want, you can add a few more tit bits from the ‘pasar malam’ next door like I did. I had a load of chicken wings and they were quite good too. Nasi putih, ikan bakar, chicken wings, di bawah sinaran lampu mentol, by the waterfront, isn’t that cool or what?

Tired of the city, the siblings decided to do a bit of nature as the next form of activity the next day. So we decided to check out the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park. What is that? Well, let me paste something…

Tunku Abdul Rahman Park is a State Park created to protect the natural enviroment, including the coral reefs, marine life, the fauna and flora. This park is lying from 3km to 8km off Kota Kinabalu which comprises of 5 islands. They are Gaya Island , Manukan Island , Mamutik Island , Sapi Island and Sulug Island. During the British rule in 1882 , a trading settlement was set up in Gaya Island by British North Borneo Chartered Company. This company later shifted to the mainland Kota Kinabalu. After 92 years , finally in 1974 ,Gaya Island and the whole of Pulau Sapi was gazetted as the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park , named after the first Prime Minister of Malaysia.. This gazetted place covers an area of 8,990acres (3,638 hectares). In 1979 , it was increased to 12, 185 acres (4,929 hectares) with the inclusion of the other 3 nearby islands such as Manukan Island, Mamutik Island and Sulug Island.

Capische? Okay, so due to financial and time constraints, we weren’t gonna go to every island. So we picked two, the biggest one – Manukan, and a slightly smaller one – Sapi. We took a very bumpy boat ride to the island and I couldn’t help but think to myself, since I left for Kinabalu, I was in a car, in a train, on a plane and now on a boat. Land, air, rail, water – I did it all. Quite a feat.

Upon arrival we were greeted by a sign which is now has become my mother’s favorite phrase – take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but footprints. Suddenly you feel all that ‘protect the environment’ vibe. But that’s exactly what we did – just chillin’ on the white sandy beach. Mainly because you even have to pay to go into the water. And if you want to go snorkeling but don’t have the gear, you have to rent them, and they are ridiculously priced. Man, we even had to pay just to BE on the island. So in the end we just sat on the beach and tengok orang. That was Manukan, our first stop. We spent an hour and a half there before we shifted to a cozier Sapi. On the boat ride to Sapi I managed to board alongside a vivacious Italian girl, wearing a one-piece black bathing suit, covering her flawless bronzed skin. Unfortunately she was with her whole other family and her father is a really intimidating figure. A 6-ft, well-built, white haired Italian that goes by the name of Carlo. I wouldn’t be surprised if he is a bona fide Roman consigliere. But let’s get back to Sapi.

Sapi is also a delight. Less spacious than Manukan but nevertheless enchanting. We were suppose to spend 2 ½ hours on Sapi so right after having a simple lunch I dozed off on the beach. It was really relaxing. The cool, soft sand under your back, the caressing sea breeze, the faint sounds of children laughter in the background, the swaying of the trees, aah no wonder I crept into dreamland. By the time I woke up, the beach was almost deserted as people had started to leave. I had my feet dipped into the water just to get the feel. Pocketed a few dead corals washed ashore as a souvenir. I wonder if that’s illegal. But anyhow, the nature trip was good. Even though the view of the fishes from the jetty in the crystal clear water is impressive, I remembered I had a better experience at the Pulau Payar Marine Park at Langkawi. There were a lot more fishes and corals, and they even had a ‘feed the sharks’ session, which I personally thought was really cool. It reminds me of Sherman.

But since my stay in Sabah is only for 4 days and 3 nights it was soon time to leave. A few more chillin’ time at the pool and more visits to the ‘hip’ town centre made up for the rest of our free time. Geez, I even had time to watch Gol & Gincu at Kinabalu, such is that my mati akal tak tau nak buat apa. And the movie theatre is not that good either. It’s a refurbished old school cinema house. It’s clean and decent but there’s no padding on the wall so the sound echoes from the movie. That’s among its many flaws. And it was suppose to be the best GSC in the whole of Kinabalu! Enuff said.

Upon leaving, it is now official that I have visited every state in Malaysia. All 14 of them (that is, if you exclude Labuan. I don’t think I even want to go there. What’s in Labuan anyway? People say it’s like Brunei where by 8 at night, everybody went home already and all the shops in the city dah tutup kedai. Ish lagi la mati kutu camtu). It took me 23 years but I finally made it. The only regret that I have was that I didn’t have the chance to visit Mount Kinabalu. Quite ridiculous, isn’t it? To visit Kota Kinabalu but not to Mount Kinabalu. Macam tak cukup syarat lak. Tak cukup masa maa. It’s a whole day event. Kena sewa van la, 2 jam travel la, and not to mention a few hundred more terbang melayang. Takpe la. Maybe some other time. But overall, a good time. I enjoyed my vacation. But if next time an opportunity to visit the island of Borneo should arise, I would like to visit Sarawak. I couldn’t even spell my name the last time I was there. So young I was. It would be interesting to see what’s been brewing for the past two decades. People say a lot people, especially the people from Semenanjung, underestimate the beauty of Sarawak. I think I’m one of those people, and I would glad to be proven wrong. Maybe I could even hire Jes to be my travel guide. That is, if I wanted a tour of Bintulu. She’s only been there a few months so I think any attempts of venturing out of Bintulu would result in both of us getting lost. Yep, it’s confirmed. I SMSed Jes and she doesn’t even know where Mulu is. So, note to self: Jes as a travel guide – confine only to Bintulu town center. So, till next time posse, cheers.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

My Convocation

It is now 12.27 a.m. on a Tuesday morning. It has been more than a week since my convocation and only now do I think that I’m in the right frame of mind to write something about it. Strange, but true. Actually I had written something about it. A meticulous one and I stopped halfway through because, apart from myself, I think I’ll bore everyone who’ll read it. So I decided to take a warm shower, change into fresh clothes and conjure a fresh one with the blinking lights of the Twin Towers in the background to my right as my companion.

First up – the tie. Oh yes, the tie. The truly exquisite Armani tie and yes, I bought it. It’s hanging nicely in my closet, unsure the next time it will don my neck. Something I could only come to grip of owning in the last few days. Something which I thought, initially I could get for less than RM300 when I first came into the store. Then, imagine my surprise when I was told after discount, I could get a tie at RM345. yippee-ka-yay motherfucker. But what I didn’t realize was that the discounts were not valid for the new arrivals. And guess what? The tie I chose was the new arrivals line. And imagine my fucking horror when at the counter, while wrapping the merchandise, the sales lady asked RM499 of my money. By then it was too late to back out. I had no choice but to pay. Either that or the most humiliating and embarrassing moment of my life. Thankfully, I had enough cash on me. But horrifyingly, I was now RM150 short for the trip back to UTP. And there goes the budget for my pocket squares. Yet, somehow I managed to scrape through the weekend roughly unscathed. It was tough, but I survived.

As for the convocation, well, it was basically awesome. The dress rehearsal was incredibly boring as expected, but necessary I suppose. But it did give me a chance to catch up with some of my pretty lady friends during break. A giggle or two can take your mind off the tasteless food.

The convocation dinner was excellent, apart from the fact that it was held at the most uninspiring of places – the aging main hall. The food was fantastic. And I could tell it was an expensive course. Not as the one at Sudu but reasonably satisfying. But I still despise the fact that I had to wear baju batik for the dinner. It made me feel old. As if I’m a 30-year-old man with a wife and two children. Who thought up of this dress code anyway? Such preposterousness. But I finally managed to get a proper photo shoot with the gebu Sodes. It wasn’t exactly the cover of Vogue but it’ll do. And also I get to mingle with the elusive ‘pipi-pink’, and she even gave me a red rose. Aww ain’t that sweet? But I did miss UTP’s own Malaysian Idol. What’s her name again? Farah, I think. I’m not really a fan, just in for the bragging rights. But you should check out how high the slit of her skirt went. Very tantalizing.

As for the convocation. Oh the convocation. You know, someone actually stole my mortar board while we were forming the line for the procession into the hall. Some Malaysians, I tell you. I mati-mati ingat I left mine in my car, which was 15 minutes walk away. I went lah! Berpeluh beb. Trudging along feeling really upset just like Anakin Skywalker with the robe and all. Then after I came back to my spot, nearly half an hour later of hopeless search, there it was, elok-elok atas seat batu, betul-betul 30cm from where I left it. Nasib baik si bangang tu realize silap die. Kalau tak mampus aku. But I still asked around just to be sure. Pas 2 , 3 orang tak ngaku, ape lagi? Sambar je la, letak atas kepala, masuk line, diri diam-diam.

But when the procession finally gets underway I was already feeling tired because I had been standing for nearly two hours. Not to mention without food and water. It was nothing less than a torture but all in the name of creating a good impression. Oh fuck it. As if that wasn’t enough, I had to wait further longer until everyone was properly seated inside the hall. First it was the 500+ graduates, then the lecturers, the senate, the board of directors and finally the Chancellor and Pro-Chancellor. I was bored to death even before the party started. Oh did I mention my programme was the last to go on stage? That’s right. Of all 6 programmes, IT was the last to go up. I had to watch more than 500 people go on stage and receiving their degrees before it was my turn. Agonizing? Oh you don’t know the meaning of that. But when it did came, oh God, it was truly awesome. For that brief moment in time, for that few seconds on stage, I was the moment. The center of attention was me. It was me, the Tun and 2000 pair of eyes. When I walked up to him, time froze. “Congratulations,” the Tun said with a smile. It was truly an honor. A great man like him to personally congratulate me was something truly special. It only lasted for a few seconds but man, will I ever cherish that moment. Then it was the valedictorian award and I dozed off during Tun’s speech, alongside Hadi who was already slightly snoring beside me. Then it was the procession leading out and then, it was over. Well, not quite. Only the official function was over.

So supposedly I was to meet my parents outside the hall but as luck would have had it, during my brief journey out of the hall, I somehow managed to become the photographer for, not one, but two family photos. One for Hadi and one for Regina Hayati. You shameless people, how dare you make me jadi tukang amik gamba. But I did get a congratulatory shake from the man, Mr. Rahiman. Wow…I once gotten a ‘thank you’ from Tan Sri Hassan, then a ‘congratulations’ from Tun Mahathir, I guess another congratulations from a PDB head honcho would be another one for the book.

Then I took some family photos and it was good. Apart from the hot weather and I was in a three-layer suit which, inevitably, made me sweat like a pig. But the family meeting was short as they had to head home. To prepare for the trip to Kinabalu the next day and oh boy, do I have a story to tell about that one. But after the family went home I went straight back to the vicinity of the hall, in the hope of catching some of my friends for some memorable photo shoot. But to my disappointment, they weren’t any. I waited and I waited and I did manage to get a few with Irwan, Wakju, Apau, Zalina and Jes but other than that, no one. I was hoping for at least a photo with some of the IT/IS misfit boys but that too didn’t materialized. And the one girl that I really wanted to take a picture with was Aritha, but she too went lesap entah ke mana. Yes, you lah, Aritha! I searched high-low for you but never be to be found. Now I wonder why I even bother. Maybe I should’ve called you but as if that would’ve made any difference.
Anyway, overall, everything went well. Except the regrettably finale part of the photo shoot that never happened. Even for the mortar-board-tossing session was only held between me and Hadi. But it was just a small occasion. Our mortars just went spinning only a few centimeters in front of our noses. And we shouted a light ‘yippee!’.

I guess that’s it. Oh yeah I forgot to mention I saw Siti Nabilah on Friday. But just ‘saw’, not ‘meet’. Only just that once. But oh goodness me, she is still as cute and beautiful as I last remember her. Too bad she already has this obnoxious and pompous boyfriend. Frakk!! But anyhow, I was too busy with my helium filled balloon. I spent two-ringgit on the balloon, you know. Pantek nye expensive. But I always wanted to try what Matthew Perry did and sound like the mice in Babe so I paid for it. And it worked! It really worked! After a few inhalations, my voice turned chipmunk-like. I had so much fun I laughed ‘till I cried. But sadly, the effect only lasted for a few seconds so before I knew it, I already ran out of helium. My two-ringgit just gone like that. But it was so much worth it.

Next we’ll be talking about my explorace adventure en route to Kota Kinabalu and why it reminded me of Steve Martin and John Candy.

Until then, I’m now an official UTP graduate. Woo hoo! That is, until I received my official transcript which UTP promised to post. But knowing UTP, I’m guessing it’ll only arrive here right before Raya. Cheers.