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 http://www.chanelv.com/ 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.