Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Exercise Your Right

As a former civics teacher, I have to say this: if you are eligible to vote, please do so in the coming general election.

Election is coming. Elect, don't just erect!

It is heartening indeed to go into school and see how excited my students are about the upcoming election, but it really is heartbreaking to hear that there are so many eligible voters out there who just don't care.

Don't you care about how your country is run? Have you never ever felt dissatisfaction over the way things are run? If you are perfectly content with the current state of affairs, then it is perfectly understandable that you remain politically neutral.

But the thing that irks me is that there are people who complain about the injustices committed by our government, but when the time comes for them to exercise their right to choose, they choose to abstain instead.

Just go vote la, arrgh!

I love and truly believe in my country, Malaysia. We have the best food in the region, we're blessed with so many historical and natural wonders, our lands are rich with natural resources, but corrupt politicians and general mismanagement have made our blessed nation far less than perfect.

If we don't do something - Samy, the eternal transport minister.

As Malaysians, it is our responsiblilty to both the people who have come before us, and to the generations after us, to vote for the party that can bring our country to greater heights. So, don't waste that vote of yours, lest it ends up voting for a darker future, without you even knowing about it.

Am I the only one who finds it weird (and irritating) that Barisan Nasional ads are EVERYWHERE, from the newspapers to the radios to even my MSN INBOX! YES, MY MSN INBOX IS NOT SPARED!

That adspace must have cost A LOT!

Where does Barisan get all this money to fund all these advertisements? Out of the taxpayers coffers? Guess we'll never know unless we make our voice heard.

Perhaps we need to do it like this?


Perhaps he's exactly what we need.

On seeing the 100% perfect girl one beautiful April morning

My favourite author is Haruki Murakami. I've read quite a number of his books, and they never fall short of amazing. Truth to be told, he could very well be one of the main reasons why my works are always so romantically tragic.

Haruki Murakami: On Seeing the 100% perfect girl one beautiful April morning
One beautiful April morning, on a narrow side street in Tokyo's fashionable Harujuku neighborhood, I walked past the 100% perfect girl.

Tell you the truth, she's not that good-looking. She doesn't stand out in any way. Her clothes are nothing special. The back of her hair is still bent out of shape from sleep. She isn't young, either - must be near thirty, not even close to a "girl," properly speaking. But still, I know from fifty yards away: She's the 100% perfect girl for me. The moment I see her, there's a rumbling in my chest, and my mouth is as dry as a desert.

Maybe you have your own particular favorite type of girl - one with slim ankles, say, or big eyes, or graceful fingers, or you're drawn for no good reason to girls who take their time with every meal. I have my own preferences, of course. Sometimes in a restaurant I'll catch myself staring at the girl at the next table to mine because I like the shape of her nose.

But no one can insist that his 100% perfect girl correspond to some preconceived type. Much as I like noses, I can't recall the shape of hers - or even if she had one. All I can remember for sure is that she was no great beauty. It's weird.

"Yesterday on the street I passed the 100% girl," I tell someone.

"Yeah?" he says. "Good-looking?"

"Not really."

"Your favorite type, then?"

"I don't know. I can't seem to remember anything about her - the shape of her eyes or the size of her breasts."


"Yeah. Strange."

"So anyhow," he says, already bored, "what did you do? Talk to her? Follow her?"

"Nah. Just passed her on the street."

She's walking east to west, and I west to east. It's a really nice April morning.

Wish I could talk to her. Half an hour would be plenty: just ask her about herself, tell her about myself, and - what I'd really like to do - explain to her the complexities of fate that have led to our passing each other on a side street in Harajuku on a beautiful April morning in 1981. This was something sure to be crammed full of warm secrets, like an antique clock build when peace filled the world.

After talking, we'd have lunch somewhere, maybe see a Woody Allen movie, stop by a hotel bar for cocktails. With any kind of luck, we might end up in bed.

Potentiality knocks on the door of my heart.

Now the distance between us has narrowed to fifteen yards.

How can I approach her? What should I say?

"Good morning, miss. Do you think you could spare half an hour for a little conversation?"

Ridiculous. I'd sound like an insurance salesman.

"Pardon me, but would you happen to know if there is an all-night cleaners in the neighborhood?"

No, this is just as ridiculous. I'm not carrying any laundry, for one thing. Who's going to buy a line like that?

Maybe the simple truth would do. "Good morning. You are the 100% perfect girl for me."

No, she wouldn't believe it. Or even if she did, she might not want to talk to me. Sorry, she could say, I might be the 100% perfect girl for you, but you're not the 100% boy for me. It could happen. And if I found myself in that situation, I'd probably go to pieces. I'd never recover from the shock. I'm thirty-two, and that's what growing older is all about.

We pass in front of a flower shop. A small, warm air mass touches my skin. The asphalt is damp, and I catch the scent of roses. I can't bring myself to speak to her. She wears a white sweater, and in her right hand she holds a crisp white envelope lacking only a stamp. So: She's written somebody a letter, maybe spent the whole night writing, to judge from the sleepy look in her eyes. The envelope could contain every secret she's ever had.

I take a few more strides and turn: She's lost in the crowd.

Now, of course, I know exactly what I should have said to her. It would have been a long speech, though, far too long for me to have delivered it properly. The ideas I come up with are never very practical.

Oh, well. It would have started "Once upon a time" and ended "A sad story, don't you think?"

Once upon a time, there lived a boy and a girl. The boy was eighteen and the girl sixteen. He was not unusually handsome, and she was not especially beautiful. They were just an ordinary lonely boy and an ordinary lonely girl, like all the others. But they believed with their whole hearts that somewhere in the world there lived the 100% perfect boy and the 100% perfect girl for them. Yes, they believed in a miracle. And that miracle actually happened.

One day the two came upon each other on the corner of a street.

"This is amazing," he said. "I've been looking for you all my life. You may not believe this, but you're the 100% perfect girl for me."

"And you," she said to him, "are the 100% perfect boy for me, exactly as I'd pictured you in every detail. It's like a dream."

They sat on a park bench, held hands, and told each other their stories hour after hour. They were not lonely anymore. They had found and been found by their 100% perfect other. What a wonderful thing it is to find and be found by your 100% perfect other. It's a miracle, a cosmic miracle.

As they sat and talked, however, a tiny, tiny sliver of doubt took root in their hearts: Was it really all right for one's dreams to come true so easily?

And so, when there came a momentary lull in their conversation, the boy said to the girl, "Let's test ourselves - just once. If we really are each other's 100% perfect lovers, then sometime, somewhere, we will meet again without fail. And when that happens, and we know that we are the 100% perfect ones, we'll marry then and there. What do you think?"

"Yes," she said, "that is exactly what we should do."

And so they parted, she to the east, and he to the west.

The test they had agreed upon, however, was utterly unnecessary. They should never have undertaken it, because they really and truly were each other's 100% perfect lovers, and it was a miracle that they had ever met. But it was impossible for them to know this, young as they were. The cold, indifferent waves of fate proceeded to toss them unmercifully.

One winter, both the boy and the girl came down with the season's terrible inluenza, and after drifting for weeks between life and death they lost all memory of their earlier years. When they awoke, their heads were as empty as the young D. H. Lawrence's piggy bank.

They were two bright, determined young people, however, and through their unremitting efforts they were able to acquire once again the knowledge and feeling that qualified them to return as full-fledged members of society. Heaven be praised, they became truly upstanding citizens who knew how to transfer from one subway line to another, who were fully capable of sending a special-delivery letter at the post office. Indeed, they even experienced love again, sometimes as much as 75% or even 85% love.

Time passed with shocking swiftness, and soon the boy was thirty-two, the girl thirty.

One beautiful April morning, in search of a cup of coffee to start the day, the boy was walking from west to east, while the girl, intending to send a special-delivery letter, was walking from east to west, but along the same narrow street in the Harajuku neighborhood of Tokyo. They passed each other in the very center of the street. The faintest gleam of their lost memories glimmered for the briefest moment in their hearts. Each felt a rumbling in their chest. And they knew:

She is the 100% perfect girl for me.

He is the 100% perfect boy for me.

But the glow of their memories was far too weak, and their thoughts no longer had the clarity of fouteen years earlier. Without a word, they passed each other, disappearing into the crowd. Forever.

A sad story, don't you think?

Yes, that's it, that is what I should have said to her.


Someone very dear to me once told me that it would be really romantic if we parted ways, only to have fate bring us back together long after we parted, just like in a movie.

That's great if fate decides to be kind, but what if fate doesn't?

If there's one thing I've learnt after all I've went through, it's this - I rather not tempt fate.
Gonna get myself a new Murakami book when I see one.

Edit: Yes, ROGER gave me the link to the story. Credit enough?

Sunday, February 24, 2008


Well, I'm finally doing this meme after procrastinating for so long. This is for you, Stef!

1. What was your dream during your childhood?
I always wanted to be a scientist when I was younger. I was always interested in the way things worked and how things in our world just fit together. I'm naturally inquisitive and love to learn more about the world. However, as I grew older, I realised that I'm just not cut out for this. I'll die if I'm cooped up in a lab the whole day. (: Just need to interact with people.

2. Do you like rainy days or sunny days? Why?
This really depends on my mood. Love it when it rains when I'm spending a quiet day at home, but of course it sucks when it rains just when I want to go out.

3. Which colour do you like better? Black or White?
Black. It makes me look slimmer. (: I think I have more black t-shirts than any other colour.

4. Who would you marry?
I don't know the answer to that, but what I can say is that I will do my very best to ensure that I won't settle for anything less than perfect. Yeah, I know I'm an idealistic perfectionist, but that's just who I am.

5. Where do you want to go most? Why?
I just want to be with the people I love. Sometimes they are far away and I just wish that I can have them back near to me or that I could be over there close to them.

6. Which part of yourself do you love the most?
Well, I love most of it, only minus the little bit of unwanted fat. (:

7. When you encounter a sad moment, what do you do?
I emo about, listen to music, write, draw and try to express myself creatively. And yeah, it always help to talk to a friend that understands. One of the reasons I'm missing you so much right now.

8. What are you afraid of losing the most?
The people I love. The people I love, my friends, all play a really big part in my life and I never ever want to lose them.

9. If you met someone you love, would you confess to him/her? Or just keep it secret, observing?
I'll let her know. I'm a real honest and direct guy so she'll find out sooner or later if she means something to me.

10. List out 3 good points of the one who tagged you.

1. She always smiles like all the time!
2. She really rarely ever gets mad at people. She's really patient and nice. After knowing her for so many years, I can barely recall the times I've seen her angry.
3. She has been a friend who was always there for me. She's someone I know that I can definitely rely on.

11. What are the requirements that you wish for your other half?
Well, like I mentioned earlier, she has to be just right. The right look, good sense of fashion, wit, charm,...... and yes the ability to appreciate my humour and my stories. That would help a big deal! (:

12. Up to now, what is the moment you regret most?
I don't believe in regrets and I can't remember any specific moments I really regret. Just wished that I have more willpower, determination and focus. Maybe the time where I decided to stop exercising daily? Need to start working out again.

13. Which type of person do you hate most?
People who intentionally and knowingly deceive. I strongly believe in honesty, even though telling the truth may sometimes hurt. I just really feel betrayed when someone intentionally lies to me. But then again, I don't really believe in hating someone either. I usually forgive and forget. (:

14. What is your ambition?
Career wise, I only know that I want to be successful and make enough money for my family without sacrificing too much time spent with the people I love. Would be great to work from home, just like Dad. (:

15. Would you rather be someone else at this very moment?
I happy being who I am as a person. I just wish I could have more control over some circumstances in life. But then again, guess I'm not God to begin with anyway.

16. If you can have 2 dreams to come true, what would it be?
To find the person that is my one true love and to be able to spend our livetimes loving each other and to become a successful rock star! :P

17. What do you think is most important in your life?
Love. I strongly believe that love is what gives us meaning in our lives. Family, friends and loved ones give me the reason to keep pressing on. Can't do without it.

18. Who’s your favourite cartoon character?
Sonic and Tails! Just loved them all the way!

19. What will you do if the world ends tomorrow?
Tell all the people I love that I love them, help comfort those that cannot accept it, and spend the world's last moments with family and friends.

20. The most worthwhile decision you’ve ever made in your life so far?
To treasure my friends who care so much about me. Every other day they surprise me with how much they care, they really do and I am so thankful for them. They do really make my life so much more colourful. (: Love you all so much!

I tag:

Ern Sheong
Chia Wei
Suh Ming

Love to see your responses!

Chasing Rainbows

Hope evaporated like a delicate rainbow in the face of the sun. Why can't I have everyone I love in one place?

Let's just see how this story ends.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

The last day.

What's up with my life these days till my blog is this neglected?

Well, things have been pretty hectic and confusing lately. I am currently at a crossroads, and I just hope that I'm on the right track this time. It all logically makes sense, and I guess I should just put all those old, confusing feelings behind and just go with what seems right.

Guess we can never be 100% certain of our choices in life, and the best we can do is just to go with our gut and just go for the path we choose with all the passion and strength we can muster. All we can do is just to do our best and pray that it all works out.

Just gonna to give my best shot at life and pray for the best. Enjoy the moment, I'll never come back.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

I want to be your fantasy...

This made me laugh out loud. Seriously.

Tong Hua - English Version

Forgot how long it's been
since I last heard you
telling me 'bout your fav'rite story
thought for a long time,
began to worry.
Is it me who did something wrong?

You cried and said to me
that fairytales are all just lies.
I couldn't be your fairytale prince.
but you don't understand
since you gave me your hands
stars in my sky began to shine.

I'm willing to change into
The angel in those fairy tales
Just turn my arms into wings and hold you near.
You must believe, believe that we will be like a fairytale,
ending with happiness and love.

You cried and said to me
that fairytales are all just lies.
I couldn't be your fairytale prince.
but you don't understand
since you gave me your hands
stars in my sky began to shine.

I want to be your fantasy
The angel that you used to love.
Just turn my arms into wings and hold you near.
You must believe, believe that we will be like a fairytale,
ending with happiness and love.

I wish to be your fantasy.
The angel that you used to love.
Just turn my arms into wings and hold you near.
You must believe, believe that we will be like a fairytale,
ending with happiness and love.

I want to be your fantasy.
The angel that you used to love.
Just turn my arms into wings and hold you near.
You must believe, believe that we will be like a fairytale,
ending with happiness and love.

Ending with happiness and love.

Don't we all want it to end with happiness and love?

Monday, February 18, 2008

Hamlet, oh Hamlet...

Been partying throughout the weekend and I have ended up neglecting this dear blog of mine quite a bit. So just some updates on my life so far.

Things in school have been going quite well. It really broke my heart when I got a new timetable and I had to give up my civics classes (and some of my moral classes) to teach art and English instead. Guess there's no use crying over spilt milk as people come and go in our lives. I just pray and hope that in my short stint teaching I have touched my students hearts and inspired them to live better and brighter lives.

Thank you, really, you students out there who have stood up and let me know that I have made a difference for the better in your lives - you really inspired me to work harder to speak out to even more of my students. I really hope that I can make a difference in this short stint that I'm helping out in DJ. Knowing these students has really made me realise how important giving back to the community is to me. Being able to make a difference in their lives would make all the difference in mine.

My friends have also been the best ever, both my new friends and old friends alike. Mr Chuah, Mr Abel, Mr Patrick and Mr Tysern have been the best teachers/colleagues ever. Teaching in DJ is just so much fun with them.

Other things in my life just seem to uncertain at this point. Its good, but I feel that I've lost control. Sometimes it seems to me that fate is a mean kid with a magnifying glass, and I'm but a little worker ant. Lately, whenever I seem to find something good in my life, fate conjures up this thing called distance and just whisks it all away, but that may be too extreme a view.

Thank God that there are things in my life so good and so sublime that give me the reason to push on, like my family and friends. You guys give me reason to push on and believe that things will eventually get better. I believe so too.

From one of the brightest shining stars in my life, Hamlet:

Rooftops and Revelations
You were the class monitor,
I was (and still am) the lazy fucker.

You did your assignments,
while I was doing time in Guantanamo Bay Confinement.

As different as we are,
You (and Roger) and I were all commonly bizarre.

Maybe that's why we became friends,
or maybe we were Retards who made sense.

I still remember the meals and coffee we had,
or how we used to drive our Maths teacher mad.

The lectures we used to skip,
and our friend, Abishek, whom we still miss.

There was Mrs. Atomic who taught Swahili,
And that Moral teacher who seemed rather girly.

The times when Roger got insane,
Or his theory and graphs about dames.

Two years and the memories were great,
and I love you guys more than what can be said.

So forgive me if some parts of this does not rhyme,
you see I didn't have much time.

So one day, when you're rich and making millions with your band,
don't forget me, Lucy, the girl who knows you're her bestest friend.

Love you, Kev.
Love you, Hamlet. You help keep me sane. (:

Thursday, February 14, 2008

In the mood for love... or not?

Here's something that's just so cute and sweet at the same time it just puts a smile on my face.

A letter to a teacher.

Mr. Tysern (horniest teacher in DJ, yes he outdid me this time!) is a classmate of mine and he's the one that got me my teaching job in DJ. Reading something like this just brings me back to the good old days when I was shorter, smaller, and more naive.

Guess things just seem to get more complicated as we grow older, but it's just us who assume that they do. I don't think they change much though, we don't seem to understand our feelings any more with age, they just are. You never know why you still love that someone, cause you just do.

Only time can tell.

Guess only time can tell what the future holds for us, but I'm still praying for what I prayed so hard for so long ago, the dream I shared with you. But perhaps its but an elusive dream, seeing that you don't run after me when I go away any more. I just don't know.

Wishing you all out there a meaningful Valentine's day, wherever in the world your Valentine may be.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Lucy in the sky with diamonds.

"Hey Jude" is playing in the background now, right after "Lucy in the sky with diamonds". Listening to such songs makes me miss the one person who used to call me Lucy so much more. Miss you, Hamlet.

Really tired and feeling brain dead now. I even have to focus and think when my brother comes with add math questions.

Must say that school can really be tiring - It feels like a day in JC all over again, teaching in school and then meeting up with friends for dinner and pool, but I would be lying if I said that it isn't rewarding. Sure, its real hard to control the large classes we have these days (we have at least 40 pupils per class now), and marking the tall stacks of exercise books ain't easy, but having people that need you and honestly want to learn something from you is just sublime. That's just what keeps me going wanting to do my best to teach them well as well as give them an unforgettable time in class with my lessons.

"I know now why God was being funny, and put me in a scholar's class. T'was to meet you."

-Hamlet, said as "When my guitar gently weeps" gently played in the background.

People like you guys give me a reason to keep pressing on.

You're like a desert flower blooming bright despite the scorching sun, a symbol of hope and faith.

You just brighten up my day Hamlet, you just do. Gotta keep holding on!

Monday, February 11, 2008

The Year of the Rat

I went back to Ipoh and Alor Setar lately to celebrate Chinese New Year with my relatives.

It is the Year of the Rat!

Must say that this was quite a productive new year. Not only did I manage to do all my visiting, angpau collecting, eating and gambling, but I also managed to catch up on my reading and learnt some things I never knew about my hometowns.

First things first, I never knew that there was a Zouk in Alor Setar.

There is a Zouk in Alor Setar.

Yes, I know that Alor Setar is not KL, but it does have a Zouk.

Don't believe me? Here's the proof.

Fine, it ain't no nightclub, but it's Zouk!

And it serves curry fish head! Bet they don't have that in Zouk Singapore or KL!

At least it serves booze. (: It's family friendly too! Just imagine my shock when my grand uncle pointed at the shop and told us that we were going to eat there. My brother and I burst out laughing.

The second thing I learnt is that there is a new brand of beer out that reminds me of my dear twin.

Jaz Beer, it's in coffeeshops EVERYWHERE!

These ads are just all over the place! Everywhere in coffeeshops from KL to Ipoh to Alor Setar. Just wonder if twin will ever get to try it out.

Wishing all my readers a HAPPY, PROSPEROUS, NEW YEAR OF THE RAT! Have a great year ahead!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sex, to do or not to do?

I once held the view that one should not lose their virginity until marriage. I thought it made sense. Wouldn't it be the ultimate gift to preserve one's virginity for the person that we finally end up tying the knot with? Guess that the younger, more naive me didn't realise that keeping it would only strengthen the hold the women I was romantically involved with on my life, as it is a fact that most (attractive) women, use sex as a weapon against men.

I'm not trying to run women down, I still love women and do consider myself to be quite a feminist, but women have been using sex as leverage in their dealings with men since time immemorial (yes I was there since the dawn of time, Mr. Leong). I'm absolutely positive that Wilma, the cavewoman from the Flintstones, did on many occasions withhold doing the nasty with her husband Fred, until Fred agreed to clean up his end of the cave. It has happened in the past all the way till the present and I don't see this stopping anytime soon.

So how does this all add up? Lets look at several hypothetical teenage heterosexual relationships between Dick and Jane.

Scenario 1:
Dick is a virgin and he believes purely in reserving sex for marriage.

So Dick has zero experience in bed till the day he recites his vows at the altar. Assuming that Jane is the ideal faithful woman (which is a rare breed in this day and age) and they do eventually get married, all this while 'saving' their virginity for each other, can we really say that they made a wise, rational decision in choosing to get married to each other while having all that pent up lust and hormones in them? I dare say that the foundation of a marriage is much more irrational when one of the main reasons of the marriage is just so that they can finally bang each other without guilt.

Is saving their virginity for so long (which in a long term relationship takes hell a lot of effort) worthwhile or even rational to begin with? I don't think so. I'm a romantic who still believes in true love that transcends the lusts of the body (I know I'm a hopeless romantic, SO DEAL WITH IT!) and I guess we can't say that we can be certain if there's true love in a relationship if getting pussy is still in the picture. Yes, the sad fact is that men and women alike make irrational choices when it comes to sex. Marriage to me is something really, really important and I think that keeping getting tail out of the equation is a good idea.

Scenario 2:
Dick is a virgin and believes on saving sex for the one (whatever that means). Jane however withholds sex from Dick, keeping him firmly under her control.

I know that this is totally unromantic, but sex can be (is) a pretty strong control mechanism to keep Dick in check. The worst thing is that most girls think that this kind of behaviour is perfectly acceptable behaviour, the same way many girls regard kisses and small sexual favours as "treats" that she may let her boyfriend enjoy, should he be compliant with her wants. This is clearly an example in the classical economics of demand and supply. Dick wants sex, and since Dick subscribes to the belief that he should save it for the one (I used to think this, but I never knew what the one meant for me. In this scenario though, Jane is the one.) Jane has a monopoly on the one commodity that Dick wants so badly - her pussy. As Jane monopolizes that one commodity that Dick wants so badly, she is in the position to demand the world from Dick, since Dick's beliefs limit him from fulfilling his needs anywhere else. This results in Dick becoming the poor henpecked boyfriend. This is evil sexual blackmail I tell you, downright EVIL blackmail, but it's socially acceptable! What are we good honest men to do about this? The answer is simple, get rid of our limiting beliefs that over-empower the women in our lives. Why should we give women the right to withold sex from us by believing we should save sex for "the one"?

The more I think about it, the more it seems that all these beliefs about saving sex for marriage and saving sex for the one seem to have been an elaborate conspiracy formed by women in times long ago to keep many generations of men firmly under their grasp. But are these beliefs rational? The more I think about it, the more I think no.

Don't get me wrong, I still don't think that people should have sex if they are not mature enough to understand it's physical and emotional consequences. Sex is still a very powerful and often emotional act, and we should all be sure that we are mature enough to know how to use proper protection and emotional restraint before we begin indulging in it. But my point is this - sex isn't everything about a relationship and knowing that you can have it somewhere else (built on the experience of having it somewhere else) empowers men to walk out of disastrous relationships before committing to anything serious. Let's not be naive and believe that our women are angels and would never use sex as a weapon against men, they're human too and using sex as a weapon is something deeply ingrained in the fabric of society in this day and age. And besides, practice always makes perfect aye?

I strongly believe that sex is something special that happens between two people, not an economic transaction. It may seem counter-intuitive, but it seems to me that the best way to really have romance in your life is to finally realise that sex with that someone you love is always special, no matter how many other people you've had it before that special someone came along.

P.S.: As always, I would love to hear what you guys think. So, to do or not to do? What do YOU think?

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Big Brother Badawi is Watching

Just an observation from a faithful reader:

I was looking for general criticism regarding the Malaysian government online, but noted the sparsity of results. I guess this is why:
Beware bloggers! Those who insult Malaysian government, king, or Islam face indefinite detentions under terror law. But we can still speak up politely, can't we?

Beware! Big brother Badawi is watching!

Friday, February 08, 2008

Malaysian Propaganda - "Berlainan Parti, Satu Identiti"

Just saw this atrociously sickening bit of propaganda off Nightline on TV2 (around 12am, 8th February) last night and it really pissed me off. Its the Chinese New Year now too and I must say it takes a fair bit to piss me off, but this bad government production sure did the trick.

The short (and badly produced) propaganda segment had the tagline "Berlainan Parti, Satu Identiti" (Different parties, but one identity) and it was basically a montage of videos displaying bad, destructive behaviour like the burning and destruction of civil property during demonstrations interspersed with videos of the rallies we had last year, namely the Bersih and Hindraf rallies which were to my knowledge, well organized and did not result in public property being damaged. It sickened me that our government, the Malaysian government, had to resort to such purile (why am I so certain that even our dear Information Minister does not know what that word means?) methods of misrepresentation to frame the recent rallies in an extremely negative light. I would go so far to say that the bit of propaganda I watched evoked feelings of fear and insecurity in me reminiscent of the May 13 riots that scarred our nation's history so many years ago.

Do we really need to raise such sentiment in our people in a time when so many Malaysians out there are just convinced that our government is doing a BAD job these days? Things have been handled so bad by our beloved government that when I asked my students if there were any issues they wanted to discuss during civics class, an alarming number of them wanted to discuss our government. Yes, I got that right, kids who are only in form 1 and form 2 want to discuss THE GOVERNMENT, or more specifically, how they are dissatisfied with how the government has been handling matters lately. What is even more alarming is that it is so easy to see why. The Linggam enquiry is truly a farce and even my kids can so clearly see the corruption that goes on the election of the chief justice in Malaysia. YES, the chief justice is the one who has the final say on who's wrong and who's right in our judiciary system. If such a man can be bought over, then doesn't that entail that like pirated DVDs, justice too has a price in Malaysia? What can I say but MALAYSIA BOLEH (Malaysia can)?

What's worse is the government showing the clearly orchestrated opinions of a few which are supposedly representative of the Malaysian populace as a whole. These are just some of the few statements issued by those "interviewed" on the propaganda segment. Do we really need these horrendously nonsensical reasons why the past few rallies were supposedly bad? It really feels like our dear government is likening our protestors to suicidal terrorists and the like. Does the government really think that we Malaysians are THAT DUMB? I know that there are (huge, gaping) flaws in our education system, but we weren't raised up that bad, were we?

These are some of the "good" reasons the government is offering to convince us that the demonstrations we had last year were the work of EVIL men.

"orang mahu kerja apabila mahu demonstrasi" (people want to work when they organize demonstrations)

Who is asking you to attend the demonstration against your own free will? NOBODY! Did the demonstrations that occured last year affect people who didn't want to participate until they did not have time to attend to their jobs? It hardly did! It's not like its compulsary to join the rallies, and if you don't, you can perfectly well go on with whatever work you have to do. Did the protestors close down roads and caused traffic jams? No they didn't, the police did. So what kind of nonsensical reason is this? Come to think of it, the whole business of celebrating national day year after year causes even more obstruction to traffic than the rallies that happened. Why isn't the government complaining about that too?

"demonstrasi ini kerja orang gila" (the demonstration is the work of lunatics/idiots)

You know what, I actually used to hear this line quite a bit... in primary school. If there's one thing that I've learned in my years as a debater, it's this - substantiate your claims. Clearly, our dear government doesn't. Let me bring to your attention that anyone can call another person a lunatic, even my youngest cousins. So dear government, if you want to sound just a little bit more mature and grown up, please just give us a proper reason as to why these rallies were such a bad idea. If you don't, you risk sounding no more intelligent than my kid brother's most asinine and senseless friends. From what I know, the Bersih rallies were held with a clear purpose in mind, not to create upheaval and chaos, but to demand more transparency in our elections. Can someone please tell me what is the problem with that? Hypothetically speaking, even if our elections were 100% clean and fair, it would not hurt to have additional measures to ensure that the elections run smoothly as such. The ruling party would only have reason to fear if they haven't been playing fair all these while. Guess that with all the allegations that 100 plus year old aunties have risen from the graves to cast a vote for Barisan Nasional, they may indeed have good reason to fear these new proposed measures.

Even if the government was really, really scared of the growing awareness among the rakyat, can they at least give us some BETTER reasons why coming together and demonstrating for a common purpose would lead to racial discord and riots? Guess that they just can't, for I must say that the 2007 Bersih rally was something Malaysians have to be proud of. In the rally, we saw people from all walks of life , all races coming together for a common goal - to demand clean and fair elections. What better display of unity can we ask for? A superficial mixed cultural dance on televison? I don't think so.

I used to shut my ears and pretend that the cancerous corruption that plagues our country didn't exist, but I just can't anymore. Everything is coming together now, and I cannot shut my ears and close my eyes anymore. There is something terribly wrong with this country, and it's up to us to do something about it. We cannot wait any longer.

If you see what I see, if you feel as I feel, I would really appreciate it if you left a comment. It would really be great to hear what you guys think.

Disclaimer: This is view is not representative of the views of any political party as the author really cannot care less about politics under normal circumstances. But when he saw the government's latest attempt at brainwashing the masses with idiocy, he knew he had to say something.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

School, Day 3.

Today was the last day of school before the Chinese New Year holidays, so the school was in pretty much of a festive mood, with many students (and teachers alike) absent. Since there were so many absentees, most teachers (including yours truly) decided that it would be a 'lighter' day today and cut the students some slack today.

Managed to meet up with Pn. Cecilia, my form teacher when I was in Form 4 and Form 5 earlier today before class. Thanks to her help and guidance, I feel that I am now more capable of helping my moral classes do well for their upcoming exams. I just hope that I can do my best for them and to inspire them to reach greater heights. Guess things have only got better since I stepped back into DJ and now I only have to figure out what I want to do with my classes for civics.

What happens when I don't properly plan my civics lesson:

1. They start daring each other to do stupid things. (:

2. Guys start falling in love with each other!

For the uninitiated, civics is a new subject that was only recently introduced. It is basically Malaysian moral education which is untested in the SPM. It's objective is to inculcate good values such as family unity and patriotism in students. While such an aim is indeed worthy, the means of achieving that aim, the recommended syllabus for civics is idiotic. What most civics teachers are doing is that they are using the recommended textbook and making their students answer questions like any other textbook. I strongly believe that this method is not the best way inculcate values in students. Will students begin to love their families more just because they were told to do so in class? Will they begin to be more patriotic when they still believe that our country's racial politics is still screwed up? I definitely do not think so. I just hope that I can make them (and myself) see that this world is not as screwed up as we think it is. And yeah, I hope to come up with a way to do that which is not only effective, but fun as well.

But all ain't bleak. I must say that this batch of temporary teachers, Patrick, Chong, Tysern and I, are the coolest temporary teachers that DJ has ever seen! No kidding! You guys should see how much the kids love us! Watching Tysern and Chong playing with the kids all through recess was also really heartening.

Where else do you get free motorcycle rides around the school compound after school hours?

Only in DJ, I say.

I'm really thankful to have such a cool bunch of kids, and I really hope that I can impact their lives in some way or another. DJ BOLEH!

My Current Wallpaper

Will be going back to Ipoh in the morning and away until Sunday. Wishing all you guys a happy, prosperous Chinese New Year and all the Angpaos you can carry!

Using the Computer In the Teacher's Room

I am currently writing this from the computer at the far end of the teacher's room. Today, we have 11 teachers on leave. most probably due to the long weekend we have ahead of us due to the Chinese New Year celebrations. As such a large number of teachers are absent, the staffroom is nearly empty except for another teacher and I as teachers are on relief duty, relieving the absent teachers of their classes.

It's just surreal to be in the staffroom, nearly all alone, blogging about this. Guess life just keeps throwing us things weirder than we could ever imagine. I never imagined life in Singapore, but it happened; I never envisioned myself blogging in the teacher's room, but here I am typing this post.

I'm currently reading a book on creative envisioning by the famous Feng Shui expert, Lillian Too. The special thing about that book, which I found on my desk, is that it not only is personally autographed by the wise master herself, but it is one of the few books written by her that has nothing to do with Feng Shui or any form of geomancy. I guess that book of hers is one of her first few books published, before she got into the whole business of being a Feng Shui consultant.

While some of you out there may be skeptical of creative envisioning, the powers of positive thinking and the law of attraction, let me share my experience with you that may help convince you. Just last night, as I was reading a book on positive affirmations and how we can choose to forget the pain in our pasts and focus on the happy times instead, my muse just jumped into my mind. I guess that lately, things have been so messed up that I think about the happy, happy times we had together, which were indeed the happiest I ever had, so much less these days. I don't know why, but it just seems that we humans, by default, choose to dwell in the negative things in our lives. So I decided to think about the good things that happened to us in the past few months, and then I felt my phone buzzing. She messaged, telling me that she misses me too.

I'm going to reprogram my thinking and look towards a happier, brighter future, just because I CAN!

Monday, February 04, 2008

Being a Teacher

I am now back as a teacher in DJ, and so far I must say that it has been a really interesting (but sometimes tiring) experience. Things are definitely picking up, I'm planning games and activities for my class and I really hope that the little time I spend with them will impact their lives positively in some way.

It feels good just to do my little bit to make things better in DJ, and I really hope that I can make a difference. It would really mean something if I can inspire the kids I teach, and I am willing to work for that.

Sorry for the lack of updates, but I guess the kids come first these days since I'm teaching. Will keep you guys posted on what goes on in school ya? Drop by in the afternoons if you're free!

p.s. : what have you been teaching these kids la Mr Ho? Why are they all asking me to tell them dirty jokes every lesson? (:

A Plea For Change - Konsortium Terakhir

This is posted in remembrance of Ms. Lee Nian Ning (1987-2008)

Please post this on your blog now to help:
Chung Lern and Nian Ning’s families would like all families and friends of the victims, dead or alive, in the Slim River Bus Crash to come forward and join them in taking action against the bus company. Stand up to seek justice for these three innocent individuals, who were all so young and full of life.
If you have a blog, please call out to ANYONE who
knows someone who survived or did not survive
the crash to come forward to join the Lee family.
Make a huge difference, make a huge fuss.
For now, you may contact Lee Chung Lern at or preferably on his handphone at 012-6670368.

Do check out the blog specially created for her as well,

And FYI, the petition is already up! Do your cause to help in preventing more deaths caused by the negligence of some stupid express bus drivers on the road! I've already done mine, how about you?

I know this has been pretty big news and is now everywhere about in the blogosphere, but more awareness is always a good thing. We students depend on buses for transportation and it would be a national tragedy, if this grevious problem is left unchecked.

This incident has affected me on a personal level too because I used to take the Konsortium bus to commute to Singapore and I dare say that I would not be using that good for nothing company in the future.

Let us not let the Konsortium bus company get away with what they did this time, sign the petition.

Friday, February 01, 2008

What happens when you're stuck at home staring at the screen too much.

Songs like these begin to make perfect sense. (Runs off and dances with shiny razors)

At least inanimate objects can never break your heart.

Hope things are taking a turn for the better. Went back to DJ today to start relief teaching and walked into a moral class after not touching the moral subject for two years. And I think I will never get what civics class will ever be about. Am I supposed to just come in and tell my students that they should love their families and be patriotic? When it comes to character building, I still believe that attempting to build character through pedantic, classroom means is really a waste of time. I definitely do not see any ideals and values passed on to the students after copying down class exercises. Nevertheless, I will try to make my lessons more discussion oriented and so we will talk about the issues that matter at the very least.

Being a teacher is not easy, but I'll try to do my best!

Its Complicated

Just saw this and I can so relate to this.


Life's complicated. But is love so complicated too?