Sunday, December 28, 2008

what is la dolce vita



If you look it up, it can be loosely translated to your white yacht sitting calmly in the pristine Carribean blue sea on a hot sunny day with girls topping up your tan on your six-packs.

Or this.

Friday, December 26, 2008

170. Sparkle

Life is an occasion, and sometimes you gotta do more than just turn up...sometimes you've got to rise to it...

Thursday, December 25, 2008

169. Take-off!



It starts now. Strange that no matter how jaded or cynical one can get, counting down to the New Year never loses its kick. In fact, age has increased the absurb appeal of the whole thing.

Bring it!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Autumn in London






Lotsa people can't wait for spring and summer, most people love christmas and the snowy winter.

Hmm but i've always enjoyed autumn, to that i've endured horror gasps and sarcastic ridicule (you know who you are). I have my autumn reasons which there'd be no discussion here.

Best things in life are free. Enjoy the pics.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

168. Hols and What Not

Happy holidays folks. Stick around for the after party.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Job vs Calling

This is a excerpt of a reply from Michael Lewis to a write-in.

Job vs. Calling

The distinction is artificial but worth drawing. A job will never satisfy you all by itself, but it will afford you security and the chance to pursue an exciting and fulfilling life outside of your work. A calling is an activity you find so compelling that you wind up organizing your entire self around it -- often to the detriment of your life outside of it.

There’s no shame in either. Each has costs and benefits. There is no reason to make a fetish of your career. There are activities other than work in which to find meaning and pleasure and even a sense of self-importance -- you just need to learn how to look.

Reading between the lines of your letter I sense that some of your anxiety is caused by your desire for the benefits of each -- job and calling -- without the costs. Perhaps that is what led you to Wall Street in the first place, and why your mind now turns to Hollywood.

Doing Well

What Wall Street did so well, for so long, was to give people jobs that they could pass off to themselves as well as others as callings. Such was their exalted social and financial status: Wall Street jobs made people feel special without actually having to be special. You never really had to explain why you were doing it -- even if you should have.

But really, the same rule that applies to properly functioning financial markets applies to other markets: There’s a direct relationship between risk and reward. A fantastically rewarding career usually requires you to take fantastic risks. To get your seat at the table on Wall Street you may have passed through a fine filter, but you took no real risk. You were just being paid, briefly, as if you had.

So which is it: job or calling? You can answer the question directly, or allow time to answer it for you. Either way, I think you’d be happier if you stopped thinking of what the world had to offer you, and started thinking a bit more about what you had to offer the world. Real excitement isn’t just in whatever you happen to be doing, but in what you bring to it.

In the end, you have to look for it not on the outside, but on the inside. In my experience, if you find it, the other stuff will take care of itself.

(Michael Lewis, author of “Liar’s Poker,” “Moneyball,” and “The Blind Side,” is a columnist for Bloomberg News. The opinions he expresses are his own.)

167. Things That Matter

To you. And to me. Let's talk about it. The hour grows late, the storyteller is getting long in the tooth. The days are passing us by.

If at first, there is a feeling of trepidation, fret not, for you are in good stead. For we've been through this before. The uncertainty, it swirls before us, like pale moon shadows upon leaveless trees in autumn.

What is it that keeps us from making it so? Taking that one leap of faith that we've always dreamt of, but have always been afraid to take?

There has always been a voice in our heads, a voice of singular purpose and beauty, before doubt and cynicism had eroded its poetry and purity. It gets dimmer as the days go by, being ignored more often than not. Till at last, it shall remain forever silent, save for a few fleeting glimpses in our dreams. You know those moments. When you are reminded of your childhood, and it invokes in you a deep sense of longing for a memory that has faded away.

This voice has always been true, like the voice of clear waters (as Tolkien would put it). And if it is not heeded, if it is cast aside, if it is denigrated...you do so at your own peril. For, before you know it, it will be lost, as our youth is lost as we chase after another man's fortune.

What is it that really matters to you? Are you closer to reaching your dreams? Or have you clouded and confused your dreams with material longing? Have you reached that measure of comfort and solace from your daily routine? Have you lost that unforgettable fire that is kindled in our hearts the first day we look upon the stars in awe and wonder? Does it still burn, or are they but dying embers?

Only you can answer these questions. For the heart does not lie, no matter what the head says.

Monday, December 01, 2008

166. The PAD, the Big 3, Chelsea and Other Muppets

Damn you PAD. You bunch of elitist, self-serving sonobitches. You spit on the faces of other Thais (particularly the poor ones from Isaan, nevermind the fact that most from Isaan are lemming like Thaksin loyalists). You claim to serve the King, but your only master is your own pockets. But that's not your worst crime. That has to be reserved for storming the bloody airport and ruining a potentially wonderful trip to Bangkok by yours truly.

Damn you, Big 3 auto-makers of the States. You fly in on your private jets in your fancy suits with cup in hand asking the government to bail out your shitty companies that got screwed up 'cos of your mismanagement. It's because of scum like you that the economy is in its present situation. You lot should be anally raped and flayed, with vinegar poured all over your body and made to crawl on broken glass. You greedy little pricks, makes me sick just to write about you.

Damn you Chelsea. For losing to Liverpool, and worse, Arsenal at home. Damn you for causing me to be ridiculed by Drew, Alf, Melv and other Arse/Manure/Scouse-worshipping muppets of the world. There's no way I can ever live this down. Ever.

Muppets. Wipe them out. All of them.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

165. Five Questions

Controversial British far-left politician Tony Benn insists that the following five questions should be asked of anyone with considerable power:

1) What power have you got?
2) Where did you get it from?
3) In whose interests do you use it?
4) To whom are you accountable?

and finally...

5) How do we get rid of you?

Personally, I'd skip the rest and go right to the last one.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Sigh

Fulham, Hull, Tottenham, Stoke.

The past few seasons have been fairly predictable for the Gunners, we'd be leading by averaging 6 points at the end of autumn. Buoyed and confident, championship-like team tout the local papers. We got more praises & accolades while playing sexy football. Premiership, Champions League, FA Cup rockstars.

Arsene would tell anyone to calm the eff down. Championships are not won in September. Arsenal faithfuls won't have it and we made sure everyone knew about it. It is our year, (fill the blank) is our YEAR. We were comfortably esconsced at the Premiership throne.

Spring arrives and we'd lose the plot like Jennifer Aniston. Out of the cups and gravity start to take effect on the team's standing. Sigh.

But yo yo, it's different this year. For every action, there must be an equal and opposite reaction. Hard-core geeks know this as Isaac Newton's third law of motion. There's room for another kinda of optimism. Foolish optimism, but optimism still. We're going up. That or Spurs get relegated. Punks.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Quotes III

The many essays in a local book, Out of the Tempurung which excites me, each writer's contribution may be history or story of their own views. Much information and counter-information were fed to us via various media means that what was black & white are now grey, unfortunately they weren't disseminated & debated adequately.

"A single flower, which each leaf hides another, each layer covers another layer, jealously hidden. He who knows how to take off the outside leaves will discover unimaginable things, in a difficult voyage in time & space"
- Umberto Eco, Italian writer on Italia..and perhaps our home.

Rakyat exercised their rights, put pencil to paper but Rome wasn't built in a day and earned mandates should be diligently fulfilled. This foul word commonly used, 'crossover' defeats the uni-hope of democracy, we don't need secret squirrels of back entry to move to the forefront. We don't need a Gordon Brown. 51 years of independence taught us many things, but right up there is patient and the right impetus not a 100m dash. Change is what we cried for, we now await delivery and quality.

"Freedom fighters scream & shout in their march for independence, job creation, master of their own land, oppression by the current government. They scream & march for their selfish dream to be the in the very oppressor's damning shoes themselves. To be in at the top of the food chain and have their wish, wimps and self-interest served"
- Kiran Desai, her novel - the Inheritance of Loss

We go on
For the cause
For the kind of cause
That caused we go on
We fucken go on because

"One is a master of what one doesn't say, and a slave of what one who does"
- Franco, one Spanish dictator.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

164. I, Muppet

Indeed. This amazing feeling...it feels so...muppet-like. You gotta tip your hat though, just try and try with the best of intentions, but it still turns to absolute rubbish in the end. No good deed is left unpunished it seems. Feck it.

This feeling...what is it? Disappointment? Disillusion? And, now then, what is this? Pain? Perhaps there is life yet left in these old bones eh...grrrr...

Monday, September 15, 2008

163. Helter Skelter

The word is out...tomorrow will come and go just like any other day, but it's significance will not be lost on millions of Malaysians. When was the last time anyone remembered what date Malaysia Day fell on? In fact, prior to March 8, did anyone even know what Malaysia Day was?

Everything's oh so different now, eh? 916 is the buzz word on everyone's lips. Yeah, everyone's talking about it with genuine excitement and no little trepidation. But folks, you heard it here first, it ain't happening. Not now, too soon, too chaotic, too uncertain. Nope, but by year's end, we'll be seeing a new PM, and it won't necessarily be Anwar.

I wish to be proven wrong, I sure as hell wish to be left with egg on my face, but I know for sure, as surely as I know that smurfs are blue and Barney is purple that we ain't gonna see the Great Fall anytime soon.

Till then, stay safe out there, and don't let the muppets pull you to their level. Oh no, no, not in this house.

Remember, we had the BN instigated race riots in 1969 (stirred about by the Selangor MB and the DPM), then we had Ops Lalang roughly 20 years later in 1988...now, after another 20 year cycle, it's following an all-too familiar and disturbing cycle...the loss of political power, the incitement of racial hatred and suspicion...an unruly Selangor MB, a scheming DPM, ISA arrests...

Fuck the government man, they don't speak for us.

Monday, September 08, 2008

162. My Amplified Self

I am on the Facebook, now hear me roar...ROAARRRrrrr!!! Grrrr, aint I nasty and cool. Here me roar once more....ROOOOARRRRRR!!!! Yeah baby, ain't I so mean and growly and, um, roar-ry. You know it.

Check out my Facebook profile...I have conjured an amplified version of my self that is so blatantly cool that I'd pity the fool who wouldn't seek to befriend me.

Now lo and behold, for I have a list of 500 friends...30% of whom I wouldn't usually befriend under the best of circumstances (or even if a plague wiped out 99% of the world's population and these poor sods were all that was left), another 30% solely selected due to their attractiveness (which of course makes me a cooler person by virtue of knowing attractive people), another 30% would be people I vaguely know or knew from school or college who I don't actually give a shit about but still add nonetheless to show how popular I am, and perhaps the 10% or so left would be people I actually know who secretly hate me and only add me to their list to jack up their own friend numbers so they can seem cool themselves.

Ah...bliss...this virtual community of ours...behold all these cool and meaningless applications I add to show how happening I am...and check out how many things I have in common with a serial raper and paedophile...and look at how incredibly attractive I look in my photo-shopped snaps taken at flattering angles to hide my gut/double-shin/acne/sixth finger/third nipple.

I am so cool it hurts...so cool that I spend all time online feeding more juice into the amplified version of myself, telling everyone how I'm feeling on a daily basis in those cute little sentences that only makes me seem like that inbred one-eyed mutant retard from Harold and Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay. So cool that I have no actually physical contact with real humans, and alternate my time between Facebook and my imaginary friends in the World of Warcraft. So cool that I blatantly dish our personal tidbits about myself and shove all the events and parties I'm attending down the throats of complete strangers to show how utterly deep and popular I am, when in fact I have the personality of a flea and a pecker to match it.

Yeah, I'm cool, and you know it.

Dedicated to the amplified versions of all you 100 million active Facebook users out there.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

161. And Here...We...Go!

Yeah, EPL weekend kicks off here and now. The Arse are up 1 nil against next year's Championship title contenders. So far nothing displayed indicates that they'll win the EPL. Same old Arse...slick, sexy...and ultimately lightweight and callow. In Nasri they have a gem to replace Hleb, but only just.

In the Olympics, an Italy team powered by Italy's future no. 10, Sebastian Giovinco, didn't have enough fire power to overcome Belgium. Disappointing, but hopefully, the young lad will go on to have an amazing season with the Old Lady and prove himself to be the top class player everyone in Italy craves him to be.

And Phelps, jeez, superhuman that fella. A mutant. A freak of nature. Watching him swim gives that same sort of mixture of awe and dread as watching the Chinese weightlifters lift and the Chinese divers dive. They're all not of this world.

Elsewhere, the Dark Knight continues to dominate. Can it do so for a fifth week in a row? In the face of challenge from both Stiller's new brilliant gem and Lucas' pile of shit. The Neckless One has truly raped everyone's childhood once and for all. Bastard.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

160. All Quiet

Again...it's all gone quiet...those voices in the head...hopefully not for long...there's still so many tales to tell...

Monday, July 28, 2008

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

158. Stressed

Right on. Boy, does it suck. Big time.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

157. Bat Week

This week is Batman week. Anything else is a distraction. The Dark Knight returns, and we all wait in anticipation. Why? Because we must. It's Batman, freaking BATMAN.

Nothing, and I mean nothing, with the exception of anything based on the works of Tolkien with PJ's signature on it, comes even close to setting the a-fluttering than the thought of seeing another Batman flick on the big screen, a good one for once. And the Joker, sweet heavens, the freaking Joker!!!

Batman Begins had a great 1st hour, and a bleh 2nd hour. Let's hope this one takes it up a notch. It better. Fuck man, can't hardly wait.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

A local scene

A local scene
Parade going through outside our window
Of oil, sex scandals and politics
Dangerous combination for a potent potion them
Sides trading polemic blows, ebb and flow
With eyes precariously intent on the pendulum swings
An old adage has it, politicians always lose
Was it power or money or both
But are we still being sold to watch wayang kulit
Or are we taking the steering wheel?
C’mon a spade is a spade

Is the world’s population smarter?
All legit ventures pocket only a small margin
Rothschilds, Morgans and other dynasties had their hands dirty
Before laying their feet on white porcelain
Do the bankers know how to make money going forward
They don’t seem to know
Leaving all illegit/immoral endeavours to rub shoulders with the rich & famous
Assassins, investment bankers, cronies, oil tycoons
Imagine their profits if sugar is what they trading
Drug pushers and the oldest profession in the world
Hold up
March away from this Potemkin village
Kindly step into paradisssssse
If each has their way, one would not have to sell anything
A million miles away

Saturday, July 05, 2008

156. Dilemma

It's 8.35 pm local time Bangkok. As I sit in my comfy little hotel room, I'm thinking...what shall I do now? Hmmmmmm

Elsewhere, things are escalating...probably things really need to get worse before they get better eh?

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

A round of applause?

Notedly there was a round of applause on cost cutting measures by the ministers.

"All cabinet members and deputy ministers will take a 10 per cent cut in their entertainment allowances, effective July 1 will save RM2 billion."

If you pore through all major papers internet websites for details of what their cost cutting entailed, sadly, all that came up was within the context of entertainment allowances. This leaves us with, prior to this publicity stunt they had RM20 billion in their entertainment coffers.

Now after the emotional cost cut, they only have a meagre RM18 billion for their holidays, parties, makan-makan, kenduri, souvenirs, decoration among others. RM18,000,000. Um, how far will that amount go in terms of petrol subsidy. A round of applause?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

154. Through the Wilderness

We all get lost in the wilderness at times, some for a short period, others maybe forever. Finding your way home can be difficult, and it is at times perilous, for you have strayed too far that you forget the way back.

So, to all the lost, may you find your way home. To all still wandering, do not stray too far. To all still seeking, I do hope you find that thing that you're looking for.

Nothing's trivial, the moment comes, and it passes...it passes you by if you're not careful.

And probably all that is left are dying embers, ebbing away in the cavernous darkness of the halls of time. Like a fading memory of a blissful dream, at once beautiful and wistful, for it stirs in your heart a deep yearning of what was once before, but now forgotten.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Old tiger

A tiger never loses its stripe. Albeit an old retired one.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

153. RPK

He's a bloody hero that guy. Straight-talking and no-nonsense, sometimes emotional and bleeding insane, always pious, yet confrontational and quick to laughter (with a wicked sense of humour) as he is to anger...most of all, he's a man with conviction and honour, a man's man if you will. There's hardly enough of those around these days. He stayed the course, and never faltered. He's the type who'll stare you down till hell freezes over, and you sure as hell know he won't be the first to blink. No fucking way.

He speaks, screams and cries against oppression, he rallies against injustice, and he carries the hope of the people, for he knows their heart and minds, and he will bleed himself dry for them. He is a knight, a shining beacon amongst the droll grey of the speechless. He will use all his might to bring this land of ours back on course, and his fury will cause the spineless and the corrupt to be fearful, for they know they shall not be spared from his uncompromising gaze.

Thus he is hated and maligned for those with a great deal to hide, and they will use all means to silence him. As they have done now. As we sit idly and watch. Watch truly the Last of the Mohicans be bound in chains...to be judged by the those who walk in the corridors of power.

He was there for us when we needed his strong voice, and he delivered. 5 states he helped bring to the fold. Most of all, the signal of intent to those who have long been oblivious to it all, telling them, we have had enough...we want change...and change came...and the praises were sung...for the man who stirred the spirit of the people...who spoke for them when they dared not...

And now...they will act strong and hard, swiftly and brutally...who knows what they are capable of doing? Will international condemnation be enough to stay their hand? Or will they forge ahead, knowing how much of a threat he is? We cannot tell the future, all we can do is act in the present. Let them hear our voice again, let me hear our wrath. Let him know that we stand behind me strongly, and not just through empty words like these posted on blogs...

Remember, the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. Drink on that.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

152. Egg on the Face

It looks like this blogger is left with egg on his face. Uncle Fester, beyond all odds, have brought the Blues on the brink of European glory. How bloody unlikely is that? Discounting the fact that the squad he inherited consists of some good players with one or two world-class gems, Fester nonetheless has done well after taking over from the Trenched-coated One.

Just one more push, then I'll be left eating my foot. Wouldn't mind though, what's a little shame compared to hella lot of glory?

Sunday, April 20, 2008

151. The Business End

Yes, it's that time again. Let's get cracking!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Billion

Scene: Pasar Road school field
Time: 12.41pm
Day: Friday, waiting for school to start at 2.30pm.


"Hey teacher just asked what my citacita is, has she asked u yet? I think I'll be a doctor next time. My salary next time will be $10,000 then right!", says schoolmate Currypuff.

"Dei, that little la, I'm gonna make a million dollars when i grow up!", so claimed schoolmate Cheezel. A collective, synchronised wow amongst the boys with Cheezel smiling smugly with his grasp of enormity with numbers & his dizzying height of ambition.

"So what comes after a million?" Currypuff asked, while eyeing if the icecream man is still around, slightly distraught if being a doctor doesn't fetch him that number.

"A billion? or is it zillion? I heard it over tv before....Wheel of Fortune, that's it." I answered as i was sorting out my surplus Mexico WorldCup 86 trading cards. Damn, I still need Maradona and a few other Azzurre players to complete my book to claim that cool Nintendo.

Cheezel rejoined us from his brief daydream, 'If i get a billion, I can goto Disneyland, get a Walkman, get all the toys at Toys R Us at City Square and shhh....i don't have to work at all". At this point, Puffy's exasperated look climbed on Chessy's bandwagon and added, "I'll buy a house with swimming pool and badminton courts in it!".

"Oh yea and get one Taiko Tai (a new technology of mobile phone) too!", spraying cold cynical water on Chessy's rocketing dreams.

Scene: Office, aka 2nd home.
Time: 5.21pm
Day: Thursday, waiting for work to end.



Unlike Barbie dolls, fast preposterous money can be real. A dude pocketed a ubercool $3.7 billion in the year 2007 from a fund he started a couple of year ago. That is, $3,700,000,000. Nothing against Warren Buffett or the Google guys, but Paulson here did wicked well in such a short time, some say with Lady Luck licking his ear.

This says a lot of the stock market, capitalism, morale, guts and glory, whichever way you may see it. Anyways, And as how Ali G would salute, R-E-S-T-E-C-P.

Friday, March 28, 2008

We've only just begun

Changes and upheavals, new blood and substitutions. Our daily morning coffee & newspaper treated us to hardline debates, public finger-pointing, innocuous mud slinging and genuine proclamation of determination for a better future. Those kept interest of our national political evolution or saga depending which side you're on, have their toes in line and tummy tucked for times are changing.

Hey days are gone like the credit boom, but in difficult times come opportunities. For better or worse? That is our million dollar question. Democracy allows the little voices to be heard as intended when this political system was conjured by ancient Rome, and 2008 dragged us out of our proverbial couch to make our country wary our needs & wishes. Steady ascension since independence intoxicated us, muhibbah and tolerance as our best virtue delayed our political fitness, now a stronger opposition will check & balance any government decisions.

There is still a daft minority whom left me disappointed that doesn't believe in the game that politicians play, those not bothered as reasoned their livelihood illusion will remain intact regardless of this momentous effort for this wind of change. I will draw a line in the sandbox and shout out to those hardly impetuous, bimbos & plastics to not plead ignorance. Like most, I doubt the untested but somehow the little voices of conscience & fight in my head will silence.

Mornings now are crisper, my coffee with a copy of newspaper bearing political volatility charm enriching my national pride. Time is now to prove your worth of salt, time to show your quality. If you felt intimidated by those verses from joe's previous blog, try Carpenters' per this blog title.

Friday, March 21, 2008

150. Forward

"The world is changed. I feel it in the water. I feel it in the earth. I smell it in the air. Much that once was is lost, for none now live who remember it,"
- The Fellowship of the Ring (Film)

And so is has. The world moves on. As we must as well or stand the risk of falling under the doom of Tolkien's Elves, wise and fair, yet foolishly stubborn, clinging on to a world that was no longer their own. Their time had come to pass, yet they remained unwilling to let it pass, and go beyond the sea as was their calling.

Things change, the world moves on. Times are different now from what it once was. And it's time that Malaysians move on too, and embrace the future beyond. The time of rampant and blatant corruption has come to pass. The winds of reformation are blowing, and they blow strong. Those who wish to linger in the past are doomed to be swept aside. Racial politics has no place in this brave new world. You are only as good as you actually are, and not who you are, not who you know.

"He who rejects change is the architect of decay. The only human institution which rejects progress is the cemetery,"
- Harold Wilson

"All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another,"
- Anatole France

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

149. Once

If you haven't seen this one yet, then you've probably missed one of the best films of 2007. Low key, low budget, no big stars, and shot on handycam. But the sincerity and passion for the material on the part of the filmmaker and it's performers shines through. Wonderful, magical and refreshingly devoid of all the sentimental trappings of Hollywood. Check out the great song from the film here or here.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

148. Trouble

It seems that trouble is brewing in paradise. Funny how the path to hell is always paved with good intentions. The people shall watch recent developments in the North with great interest.

Monday, March 10, 2008

147. A Five State Salute

Thus the people have spoken. Resoundingly so. So well done, but let's not forget that promises have been made, and we will wait for them to be delivered.

But what a night it was. Chelsea v Barnsley? Who gives a shit. Even if the Uncle Fester-led fools crashed out. There were bigger games afoot.

Watching RTM, TV3 and 8TV continuously talking about BN's wins in Sarawak was like watching a scene from the Twilight Zone where everyone is caught up in some space time continuum loop and doomed to repeat irrelevant things over and over again while the whole world passes them by. But of course they knew what was happening, they knew, those dastardly bunch. You could tell by a twitch here, a nervous glance there, rising terror and panic concealed behind hollow eyes.

Across the nation, the opposition became the government, and the government became the opposition. And thus, old-school BN lords and masters like Samy Vellu rode off in the sunset, with pockets full of Maika Holdings gold and head full of transplanted ass hair. Older, yes but none the prettier. Renowned dangdut singer Shahrizat sang her last repetitive tune, offering one last gem of a quote when questioned by the press on her defeat: "Some issues should have been taken more seriously." Sure they do, like how on earth can anyone be taken seriously with a haircut like yours?

Also bowing out with a whimper was Gerakan leader and ET-lookalike Dr Koh Tsu Koon, losing out to a dissident Indian professor in a state dominated by the Chinese. His party too joined him in defeat, being wiped out by the DAP. And the dominos fell, one by one, leaving those weened on sucking the life out of the people speechless and dumbfounded, responding like fish out of water gasping for sweet life.

Information minister and part-time comedian cum linguist too fell by the wayside, depriving us with priceless entertainment value through his interviews with the foreign media in his trademarked broken English. Who could forget these immortal words: "YA! It's a illegal protest because we have erection in Malaysia. It's no-no point on having a protest! We are allowing to every erection...every five years never fail! We are not our like, like Myanmar, not like other country. And, and you are helping this. You Al-Jazeera also is helping this, this forces. The, you know, these forces who are not in passion, who don't believe in democracy!"

So even as the members of the People's Front rejoiced in victory, the mood was rather glum elsewhere. In the UMNO party headquarters, the situation was grim as party leaders gathered with ashen faces to deliberate over their recent setback...

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Gun

One of the more popular topics over the coffee machine among blokes here is which team do you support. It's hard to be in London without declaring your affiliation to a local football club. I never felt magnetized to follow a team and get drawn into footie banter on Monday mornings or place 50 bucks that my team would finish top of the league while in KL for reasons not imperative now.

Every addicted footie fan got a shot up their arm in different ways and will probably feel very proud to share how & why he/she supports his/her club. The common & familiar stories are family tradition (1,589trillion cases), betting fiends (987billion cases - legal wagers only), inspiration (399billion cases), cute footballers (Beckham, Kaka and now growing Bentley fans) and finally, jumping on the bandwagon (0 reported case).

(On a side note, a research tried to explain why is there such a huge following of the game aside of it being a simple game. Us, primitive beings are inclined to coalesce to a group or a tribe for a sense of belonging. Or go read Lord of the Flies.)

With Pele's beautiful game going global, fans abroad are more involved than ever. Game 39 for EPL was proposed but got a technical KO early, nevertheless on some certain level there is some truth (outside of financial truth) that the FA is trying to bring the game to their beloved fans' doorstep. Changes will inevitably happen, perhaps this could be a harbinger of a truly global game. Imagine Liverpool v Chelsea playing in Bukit Jalil Stadium, wot!. Imagine Wigan v Derby County at Stadium Shah Alam, who?!

Alright let's get the first kiss out of the way, I support Arsenal FC.

Where, what, who, when, how? Living room back home, Fever Pitch by Nick Hornsby, Joe lent that book to me, 2002, have you watch Arsenal play lately? That was the hook, the free stash, the introductory free coupon. I never felt comfortable coming out from the closet as an Arsenal fan, for all the grief and jokes for being an Arsenal fan (haters!) and with their good title runs over the years, it's doesn't bode well with me to be labeled a bandwagoner.

Late 2007, employee no.14 of Arsenal FC swapped his business suit for Barcelona's. The exodus of the Invincibles complete while Burns roamed. The heartache, the trial & tribulation, the sinking feeling of being a NY Knicks fan which weighed heavily down on me were starting its first cloning phase to Arsenal. Jinxed I thought. But tonight the first British team to get a result at San Siro, an emphatic one at that!

Monday, March 03, 2008

146. Falling Slowly

Heard of the song Falling Slowly? No? Well you should. A really great song that, with an Oscar to boot for those doubters amongst you (though I’d probably have to qualify that by saying that the Oscars aren’t exactly consistent in awarding the truly great as opposed to the probably ok, case in point the snubs to Pan’s Labyrinth and Closer for best picture in recent years, and in the case of Pan’s Labyrinth, it didn't even get nominated in that category, and didn't win best foreign film either! Bloody hell).

Well anyway, yeah, Falling Slowly is a great song. And those who wrote it and performed seemed like genuinely nice people. Probably just like you and me, with hopes and dreams, and probably with some personal demons as well (who doesn’t have those, right?). Basically people who’ve been through shit, probably are going through it right now, but still hopeful of better things to come and maybe even turning things around for themselves.

Now, listening to some of the lyrics of the song, my mind can’t help but wander to the recent developments at Chelsea. Well we all know that Avram Grant is not a Jose Mourinho, that’s pretty darn apparent. Whilst Jose was a GQ model masquerading as a football manager, Avram's more akin to an Uncle Fester pretending to be a mental patient who thinks he's a football manager who dresses like a mortician. The only similarity is that they both play functional football which hardly makes for a spectacle for viewers. The only difference is, Jose mostly won when it counted (except for those heart wrenching losses to Liverpool).

Avram just doesn’t cut it. I’ve always had my doubts about him, and they were pretty much proven after watching Chelsea’s limp display against Spurs in the League Cup Final the other night.

What a truly wretched performance it was; they were out fought, out passed and out thought by the underdogs and deserved everything they got, which was nothing. Chelsea under Mourinho more or less performed the same way countless times, but they always managed to scrap by, through sheer strength of will. Chelsea under Avram seem to be pale imitators, basically directionless and plain lucky to go unbeaten so long (which is more or less attributable to the quality in the squad rather than any exceptional coaching).

Yeah, so Chelsea’s like that verse in the song, the bit about games that play themselves out, will never amount to anything other than they’re meant. Because that’s how exactly Chelsea are like now, playing meaningless games with themselves, deluding themselves that they’re more than they are. Chelsea are not a big club. True, they have the money and the players, but they don’t have the pedigree or football to back it. They don’t take the breath away like a Barcelona or a Milan. They don’t have that one genius that brings the fantasy that Roman so clearly wishes (sorry Joe Cole and Shaun Wright Philips, you’ve never been and never will be marquee players).

So on and on, they play this song and dance, Avram fooled Roman into thinking that he would bring fantasy football to Chelsea. Avram fools himself into thinking that he’s actually brought fantasy football to Chelsea. Terry and Lampard fool themselves every day into thinking that they’re untouchable to the team. And worse of all, I fool myself into thinking Chelsea will one day play with the flair of Gullit’s and Vialli’s teams with a winning difference.

So Chelsea are truly falling slowly, into a quagmire of dreariness. They fit in with the more downbeat aspects of the song, and have nothing of its hopefulness.

But even as I write this, Chelsea did manage a halfway decent performance away against Fulham. Scoring 4 goals away from home ain't too shabby it must be said.

And what of Arsenal? If there's one team I wouldn't mind taking the title this year it would be them, only for the fluid football they play. But alas, it looks like they're choking once more as they did a few years back. The sickening injury to Eduardo notwithstanding, Arsenal's young men have looked bereft of the ideas and the attacking innovation they wowed spectators with when they were in scintillating form throughout most of the season. The pressure of the juggernaught that is Manchester United is taking its toll no doubt. Let's just hope that the two leaders fall to bits and the Blues somehow rise from the ashes and take it. Though probably it would be best to see them end up trophyless, resulting in Avram getting the sack and Roman getting egg on his face, and all the rest of us rejoicing. Still, there's this bit in me that's always hopeful. But hope don't float, or does it?

Saturday, March 01, 2008

29 Feb 2008

A leap day. A special day. An Olympic day. A day to remember.

I wanted my birthday to be 29 Feb to be a leapling when i was a kid just to be different.

Last time it was 29 Feb, I was happily counting beans in one of the big 4 back home. Today I'm moving floors in my bank in London.

What about u?

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

145. Anarchy

Time for a wee bit of mayhem. Ok, maybe not a little. A lot. A heck of a lot.

Are we all ready to take up arms against our oppressors (just like how Bishop Tutu did, if U2 is to be believed). And just who are our oppresors? Heck if I know. Just that the sentence sounds fun. Taking up arms??? Woo-hoo! Sign me up!

Seriously though, those of us who've been around for a bit may have an inkling to what I'm alluding to. The way the world works is just that there will always be a sorry ass group who are being oppressed, and some really mean sonobitches doing the oppressing. And it doesn't end there either, sometimes the oppressor ends up being the oppressee when there are even meaner and bigger sonobitches around. Confused yet? Ah good. Hush now.

Anyway, think of it. We each of us have our oppressors. And we each of us oppress others to a certain extent. Our oppressor could be our bosses, our parents, our wives, our girlfriends/boyfriends, our friends, and even those little disturbing voices in your head. The word oppress

K, admittedly it's not exactly the right time of the year to think about revolution or razing the streets of KL, pillaging the pillars and towers of high society and dragging them pretentious bastards on the streets...all the while shouting Die fools die!!!!!!!!!!!!!! from the top of our lungs.

The conclusion of this mindless rant? Fuck if I know. But boy, it sure was fun!

Monday, February 11, 2008

144. A Steaming Pile of Shit

After witnessing the glorious capitulation of the supposedly bigger team in the Manchester derby, the other big game of the evening proved to be as exciting as watching a steaming pile of fresh dog shit dry up and harden under the afternoon sun. Naw, scrap that, that's being disrespectful to the shit and those those millions of you dog shit drying watchers out there...it was more like watching a live telecast of your nostril hair growing longer, in slow motion.

Chelsea v Liverpool...supposedly "The Best of the English Premier League"...which of course is the Best League in the Known Universe™. Yes of course it is, that's why England's won the World Cup three hundred times and is the Beacon of Hope for All Mankind, lo and behold its great messiahs, Steven "I Am Lord Of All The Known Universe Because The English Media Keep Telling Me So Even Though I'm Really An Average And Overrated Muppet Who Can't Pass Or Dribble" Gerrard and Frank "I'm Not Fat" Lampard...listen to the sage teachings of its prophets, Andy "YOU BEAAUUUUUUUUUUUUUUTTTYY" Gray and Richard "Damn Those Foreign Infidels" Keys...

And this they want to bring to the rest of the world, God help us all.

Friday, February 08, 2008

143. All Quiet

It's gone all quiet...those darn voices in my head...spooky, like a ghost town...drats...

Anyway, for what it's worth, happy hols all...

Saturday, January 12, 2008

$100 barrel

US$100 per barrel. This is on the back corner of everyone's mind but the myopic, hedonistic and perhaps selfish us (me included) couldn't bring ourselves to admission that our green world is burning. Mother Nature is being pimped.

I know what you think - a nature activist espousing dangers of global warming is akin to an Amway salesman or a propaganda doomsayers, despite all available facts are fed to us, all arguments cogently laid. A book enlightened me, I'm not joining Greenpeace but it benefited me with an idea of oil addiction & financial mechanism of where we're going with oil.

The following passage conveys some of the breadth and flavour of M.King Hubbert's macrosocial thinking:

The world's present industrial civilisation is handicapped by the coexistence of two universal, overlapping, and incompatible intellectual systems: the accumulated knowledge of the last four centuries of the properties and interrelationships of matter and energy and the associated monetary culture which has evolved from folkways of prehistoric origin.

The first of these two systems has been responsible for the spectacular rise, principally during th last two centuries, of the present industrial system and is essential for its continuance. The second, an inheritance from the prescientific past, operates by rules of its own having little in common with those of the matter-energy system. Nevertheless, the monetary system, by mean so a loose coupling, exercise a general control over the matter-energy system upon which it is superimposed.

Despite their inherent incompatibilities, these two systems during the last two centuries have had one fundamental characteristics in common, namely exponential growth, which as made a reasonably stable coexistence possible. But, for various reason, it is impossible for the matter-energy system to sustain exponential growth for more than a few tens of doublings, and this phase is by now almost over. The monetary system has no such constraints, and, according to one of its most fundamental rules, it must continue to grow by compound interest.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

142. Change

If you're tired of being a bystander, you just have to pick your moment and do something. Anything. It may not be that big a deal, but it's better than doing nothing. Perhaps it may seem insignificant, a little underwhelming too. Perhaps it may seem foolish and ill-conceived, even a tad naive. It may be all that and more. But by chance, it could prove to be meaningful to those you try to help. And that's all that matters.

For this new year let's do our bit to bring back a little colour into the grey. Damn straight.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

141. Zero Eight

We've just got here, and I'm as giddy as a polar bear in heat. 2007, you were a blast, but ain't I glad to see the back of ya. In fact, things only seem to escalate. Hopefully, it's a case that it has to get much worse before it gets better. We are hopeful, as we must be. Keep fighting that good fight!

Let's see em bright shiny things once more.