Wednesday, December 21, 2011

I can't say it, so I'm writing it down instead.

Sometimes we forget that people's actions are largely based on their experiences (the good AND the bad).
We forget to take into account the traumatizing events of their past that are likely to be reflected on their current fears.
We forget that at the end of the day, they're human too.
When we do remember, however, we realize that we have wasted so much time and energy into being upset whenever people disappoint us.
It's okay.
We're human too.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Past. Perfect.

Those things that happened,
those were just stories from some time ago.

Perhaps, it had been real - but only in the past.
They are not any more real now than the facts we read about in history books.
It happened, and it's over.

The only thing that is real right now is the present.
That's why you make the best out of it,
and enjoy the fact of now - the fiction of later.

Just Maybe

Maybe it had everything to do with you.
Maybe it had nothing to do with you.
Maybe you can't for the life of you stop analyzing which of the two is true.
But maybe you were never meant to know.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The worst solitude is to be destitute of sincere friendship.

When it comes to friendships, I value quality over quantity, any given day.

Who gives a rat's ass if you have 26 gazillion friends on Facebook when in real life you can't even get one person to sit down and have dinner with you?
What's the point of having people say Hello to you wherever you go, when late at night, you end up feeling sorry for yourself because there's no one who would listen to your problems?
Why would you want to collect superficial friends whom you can brag to, tell ha-ha funny stories to, but who won't have your back when you need them the most?

I personally think these talking-behind-backs, fighting over ridiculously unimportant things, jealousy of one another, inability to directly address issues to someone's faces are very high school-like behaviour, and I have no intention of getting sucked into the unnecessary drama of it.

A real friend wouldnt mind if you've been spending more time with your partner than you do with them. A gap apart of a few months or years wouldnt affect the friendship, because the moment you meet again, it's like you never left each other. You're just glad you have all these new things to share with the other person.

You know someone genuinely cares about you when they would tell you to your face if there's anything wrong with you, however painful and awkward the conversation might turn out to be, just because they want you to be the better person they know you can be.

Good friendships are built with trust and sincerity. Thus, if you don't think you can be sincere and trust another person, don't be surprised if you suddenly realize you have a few knives stuck on your back. If you have a problem with someone, talk it out with them first before jumping to others with the 'gossip'.

I'm coming out of my hiding place today, writing about friendships, because I'm missing my half-sister, my roommate, my friend - Baizulikha. I guess i thought writing this tribute would make me miss her less. Unfortunately, business of the mind never seems to be that simple.

To Ika, who can finish my sentences, who argues with me even when we are rooting for the same side just so we will have a healthy discussion from time to time, who sometimes understands me better than i understand myself, who i can have conversations with without the usage of words and gestures, I miss you.

:)

Thursday, June 30, 2011

When the Clock Strikes Midnight

it's midnight.
your phone starts ringing and beeping.
look at that!
birthday wishes in bulk!
there's the long heartfelt text from your bestfriend,
and the template impersonal 'Happy Birthday' message from your friend from primary school whom you have not met in almost a decade.

you are finally 20.
a proper adult, you think to yourself.
while you browse through your Facebook wall, attempting to personally reply each and every one of the virtual wishes that you received, you stop for a while and wonder how much life will be different now that you are no longer a teenager.

from that point on, every word that comes out of your mouth sounds like a piece of wisdom (to yourself of course. others might beg to differ).

sometimes, when you sit by yourself and reflect on the past, you shudder at all the mistakes that you've made, and promise yourself that you'll never be as foolish again.

fast forward to three/four/five birthdays later.
your Facebook birthday wishes have exponentially replaced text messages and phone calls.
you would prefer nothing more than to enjoy a quiet evening with the people that you love rather than have a huge celebration filled with people you barely know.


once you get the opportunity to entertain your thoughts, you realize that the 20 year old you was just as dumb as the 15 year old you.

how could the 20 year old you not know how foolish and naive it was to think that the era of screwing up your own life is over the moment you become an adult? how could you miss the fact that it's only ever going to get worse?

Since your birthday three/four/five years ago,

you have fallen in love,
fallen out of it,
perhaps even do the whole thing a few times over.
at the end of the day, you'll question if you will ever settle down and find the real thing.
if you are lucky enough to have found the real thing, somewhere along the line you will be too comfortable and forget that sustaining anything good involves a lot of effort. and thus make a mess of everything.
repeat cycle as many times as necessary.

you have realized that the course you are taking in university/college is not really what you want to be stuck doing for the rest of your life.

you have also come across the revelation that you are NOT one-of-a-kind or unique in any sense at all. you are just another face in the crowd.

you have had dreams of changing the world.
and those dreams have been shattered in front of your own eyes.
because the world and everyone in it (including yourself) is so fucked up and there's too many wrongs around you and there's nothing you can do to challenge the government and the society.

It is as it is.

Monday, June 27, 2011

You will find me in the shadow of things, and half-things, and ghost of things.

They were young.
He was 18 and she was barely 17.
Pretty much the right ages for the lead of a story (albeit this story only resides in an unread blog).

They were at a beach,
looking at the waves from a semi-secluded spot,
where they could also see friends eating and singing around the bonfire.

They were laughing.
At some jokes that is long forgotten by now.

Mid-conversation, he looks up to her and asked
"do you know what time it is now?"

"Four. 422. Why? "

"Because i want to know the exact time i asked you to be my girlfriend."

Oh. I'm sorry i forgot to mention that this was going to be a short story.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

I will always love you, so go easy on yourself.

I know you don't want it to matter right now. That's why it matters the most.

I'm actually having one of the biggest writer's block I've ever had. I have tried approximately 74 times (this statistic is bound to be rigged with a pinch of exaggeration) to write a blog post, and failing ever so gracefully.

I am facing a huge loss.
And honestly saying, i dont know how to deal with it.
I go to class and read books and talk about life and humanity with my roommate in an attempt to fill the void, but a void becomes a void for a good reason.
Otherwise, it wouldve been filled with something else already.

Sometimes we live within memories, not realizing that memories are all we have.
Sometimes we get really good at distracting ourselves.
Sometimes we wish someone was here, and at others, we wish them the best.

Because after all,
......

you are expecting me to say something poignant that sounds deep and believable, arent you?
Come on,
you don't need me for that.
you don't need a random person on the net to tell you that everything is going to be fine in the end.
or that there's a very important reason for you to go through all that you've been through.

because deep down inside, you already know.

p/s : This one goes to Fasheeha Adnan, for getting me up from my lazy chair and out of my rut.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

lost

i did not stop writing because i dont care.
in fact, it's quite the opposite.
i stopped writing (as much) because i care too much.

i care that the society that we are living in is hypocritical in nature.
i care that people are selfish.
and i care that they are hard to please.

and i am part people, part society.
so yes, im aware that i am also a part of all the traits that i mentioned above.

picture this.
a couple is sitting side by side,
and lets say the girl tells the guy that she got a new job.
an opportunity of a lifetime - in another country.

so,

Situation A : he makes a fuss about it, because moving so far away insinuates jeopardizing the relationship. she gets upset because he's being selfish and asks herself why couldnt he just be happy for her.

Situation B : he smiles and congratulates her for getting the job. and he tells her to go for it. she gets upset because it seems like it didnt matter to him one bit being far away from her.

see? hard to please.

still not convinced?

okay, lets take the issue of cronyism.

If somebody gets a job over you because they know somebody important, you call it cronyism. but if you get that job over others because you know somebody important, then you call it networking.
Selective truthfulness - hypocrisy at its worst (or best?)

People are unpredictable, and they are constantly changing (as am I) and that scares me more than anything else. Because i never know if i've said too much or too little, if i have screwed up or if it's still fixable.

There are just too many things to be said, but I'm afraid i'm not in the best state of mind to say them all. Perhaps when I've gotten better, i'll come back and splash my soul to these pages. Perhaps.

In the meantime, just know that i still care and probably always will. I just need to find the words because as of now, I am kind of lost.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

...

it gets worse.
it gets infinitely worse.
your issues, your problems, your fears,
it gets worse when you refuse to face it.

take it from me.
ive been putting a brave face on for too long.
and the funny thing is, i didnt even realize that i was being in denial.
seems apt, no?
i was in denial that i was being in denial.
if these things were happening to someone else, i might even consider it as a LOL moment.
but since im the one who has to face all these, it doesnt tickle me all that much.

im running scared. all over the place.
because i dont even know in which direction im supposed to run.
and it is infinitely worse because i cant even confide in the one person who knows how to handle me in this state.

this sounds depressing, i know.
i sound depressed, i know.
but i really just need to rant.
because ive been hiding under this shadow for too long.
and i dont know what other way to go about this.


ahhhhhh tak tau lah.
tak tau nak kata apa dah.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Valentine's Day

Red hearts strewn carelessly,
Perky umbrellas in the colourful cocktails,
The festive air consumes you each time you breathe it in.

Ladies in evening gowns
and pretty dresses
And the men, all clean shaven,
a bouquet in their hands.

'I Love You's and 'Be My Valentine's spread all over Hallmark cards.
And I,
I sit here gazing in the eyes of my past, my present and (hopefully) my future.
Laughter invading my face each time he cracks a joke.

And even though i know he might not stay for long,
tonight,
it's enough that he is with me.

Tonight, I am complete.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

This.

hey !
i need to tell you this
you need to find someone to feed you.
to make sure that you get fed.

and you need to find someone
who can make you smile
(because things are better when you smile, really, they are)
better than that, 
someone who can bring out the quirk in your smile.

although, this person that you're gonna find?
she's gonna have to be okay with your shaggy hair
because that's one of your best parts
and i wouldn't change it for the world.

i dont understand why
you seem like you have the answer
but are refusing to share them with me
so you left me wondering

i dont understand why
you create a barrier between you and people
between you and me
between you and spaces

and i dont understand why
i think you're one of the best people i have had the chance to meet in this lifetime
i wish i had understood you more
i wish i had tried harder
i wish i had been enough

and so, i am sad, yes
but i do not regret This.
feeling This. and being This.

I am better because of This.

Monday, May 2, 2011

what i love

1. sitting at a coffee place with a light book in hand, and great company that makes you laugh.

2. the sound of guitars that have just been tuned.

3. the feeling i get when i look at old pictures of me and realize how much Ive grown since then.

4. having silly crushes.

5. the idea of sitting in a neat cafe/bakery somewhere out of town in France, with old kitsch French songs playing in the background with a book in my hand and fresh croissants in front of me.

6. being near someone I like, and letting the smell of his perfume fill the space between us and intoxicate me.

7. the sound a sharp scissors make.

Friday, April 29, 2011

hello arsenal, it's been a while

i think it's been blindingly obvious why i havent written about Arsenal in such a long time.
the team has been distant to me and i am merely reciprocating the gesture.

ive had a 6 years love-hate relationship with the club.
6 years.
and not once have i had the pleasure of jumping up and down with an imaginary trophy in hand.
and after a while, i guess i sort of have gotten used to it.

somehow though, being the optimist that i usually am,
i still have faith (even though it is diminishing fast).

Wenger claims that it's about time that the game changes.
Obviously it's about bloody time!

1st May shall determine everything.
Everything.

Monday, April 25, 2011

I'm Not Going to Think About Him

I'm not going to think about him.

I'm not going to think about how he notices the stuff that I wear, and the books that I read and how he's always aware if I just bought myself something new.

I'm not going to think about how he scrunches his forehead in all seriousness when he's teaching me the proper way to kick a ball or how to strum the guitar.

I'm not going to think about how he compiles the advices that I gave him, and repeat them to me when I get stuck in the same predicament that he was previously in.

I'm not going to think about the fact that he always smells good. And how his smell always comforts me.

I'm not going to think about how he can completely pull me out of a rut just by showing his face and how he makes me feel better when I've had a crappy day.

I'm not going to think about how he knows me better than I know myself.

I'm not going to think about how he's not much of a talker and how most of the time, he keeps his thoughts to himself but somehow he always knows the right things to say at the right moments.

And I'm not going to think about the fact that I'm thinking of him the entire time I'm writing this list.

Monday, April 18, 2011

the line has been disconnected

i dont know what to think.
i really dont know what to think.
but for once, i want to feel, and not think.

i dont know where this road is leading me to.

i dont know if im going to end up happily married to a guy that ive been in love with for the past 6 years.
or if that's not going to work out and that there is someone else out there who is going to make an honest woman out of me (plus 6 years worth of good memories to fall back on)
or if i'm never going to get married and adopt a bunch of cats instead.

i dont know.
and well, that's the whole point, isnt it?
not knowing but trying anyway.

but to what extend should you try?
how do you when to call it quits?
seriously, how do people know the location of that thin line between fighting and giving up that everyone is talking about?
I CANT SEE NO LINE!!

by the way, the light in my room is flickering.
it feels like an awful medieval discotheque lights.
and all it does is remind me of how lonely i feel.

p/s : im sorry, these days, ive gotten into the habit of not finishing my thoughts.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

tu me manques

Everyday,
as one heart flutters, another will break.

Oh, but when the heart flutters,
isn't that just the most precious feeling in the world?

When you go crazy from thinking about that person too much. Like, literally crazy.
When you can't stop wishing the phone will ring, and that person's name will appear on the screen.
When everything you see reminds you of that person,
and when everything you want to do, you'd like to do it with them.

And to all of you, 
who just found love,
who just found hope,
who just found meanings,
you, my dear, are blessed.

And to all of you,
who just had a heart broken,
who just had a hope crushed,
who just had lost your way,
things, my dear, will be better.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

of little little things that are huge

i think i might have been to dark and murky these past few weeks.
*thunder blaring in the background*
wahahaha.
(eh, but seriously, it just started pouring heavily outside. frosty weather at 430 in the morning. awesome stuff)

you know, i like my hair now. the hair balances my unnaturally high testosterone level.
though i have to admit i sometimes miss my Justin Bieber-esque hair.

ala, time zaman zaman ni :


zaman muda rambut karat jiwa rancak.
hahahahaha.

it feels like an entire lifetime sometimes.
and the people around me, theyve orbited around too. 

sesungguhnya, rindu teramat kat mereka mereka ni :


***

on another note, ive been promising myself (and my roommate) to clean up my pigsty of a room. ive still got 7 dozens books to read. at this point, i think im capable of giving Proscrastination a run for its money.

***

earlier today, i got upset because my 'Shift' button was acting up on me. It suddenly went apeshit and i was a lousy person to chat with for quite a bit (if i wasnt one already) what's with all the symbols working against me. i ended up winking when i just wanted to smile.

anyway, it's working now. (the way i see it, the computer fairy waved its wand and single-wandedly fixed the 'Shift' button). I got excited and began composing this post.

***

Thursday, April 7, 2011

dimples

being me can sometimes be unnecessarily confusing.
at times, i feel like an old hippie stuck in the middle of little kids,
and at others, i feel like a naive teenager amidst the adults.

either way,
the conversation is not headed in the direction i expected it to.
and somehow,
somehow,
i got lost in translation.

you known graphs?
i am now standing above the number zero.
at number 18, i can see myself moving on (and forward)
at number -4, i can see me being left behind

it makes moving harder than it seems.

.
.
.

on a totally (un)related news, if you have Rs. 50 000 in Bangalore, you can get yourself a dimple. :')

Friday, March 18, 2011

antara hidup antara semesta

 jika aku disuruh
memetik baris baris kata dari kotak minda
dan disuruh menyulam kata dengan rasa
ini lah yang akan tercipta :

hidup,
adalah gabungan antara -
kata putus, yang tercipta dari benak benak jiwa ;
percanggahan rasa, yang mula ada sejak wujud manusia ;
tangisan airmata, yang terbit tanpa dijangka ;
dan senyuman gembira yang datang tanpa dipelawa.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

on top of my mind

1. an average person falls asleep in 7 minutes.
i often have to lie down for hours, staring at the ceiling (entertaining wild thoughts) before i finally manage to move to Dreamland. 
i dont know if that means i'm not average, or i'm not a person.

2. in French class, i learnt :
Il est bien, mais ses amis sont bizarres !
which means : he's all right but his friends are weird. 
the lecturer said that this sentence is surprisingly useful. claims that she uses it everyday. being in Tronoh, i'm not surprised (and if you're wondering where Tronoh is, you've just proved my point heheh). Just saying.

3. lately, i keep finding myself on the brink of giving up. but each time, you pulled me away from the ledge. if it wasn't for you, i would've been able to tell you what is in the abyss by now. thank you for babysitting me.

4. I came across this video :



It's a French version of 'Hold Me Tight' by Les Baronnets. Sure, they aren't as good as The Beatles were but the song is still pretty cute.

5. as much as i try to remind myself, i keep forgetting that some things are unexplainable. these things ought to be left by itself for if you try too hard to make sense of it, before you know it, you will be carted off to a psychiatric ward. i should know, there has been too many nights in which i broke down crying simply because i was thinking too much and i couldnt make sense of the thoughts in my head.

6. do you realize that time passes by really fast when you're not doing anything? which sucks because it is when you're at your laziest and not in the mood to do anything that datelines try their hardest to smother you. and when you're taking the time to be as useful as humanly possible, that is when the weekend never seems to come around. whose idea was it again to have a 7 day week ?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Both Light and Shadow are the dance of Love.


For any relationship to work,
it is important that you have Faith.
Even when it seems like Faith doesnt want anything to do with you.

To be able to trust and to understand is not everybody's forte.
But if you find someone who is willing to give just as much as you would, then perhaps you've stumbled onto something that a lot of people out there is still seeking for (and for some, still trying to believe in).

When it comes to this topic,
I'm just as clueless as the next person.
As years passed by, bringing with it an additional digit in my age, it becomes more and more important to me to try and figure it all out.

But the #1 rule of life is that it is unpredictable.

So, for the time being, this is all i can tell you.

1) Somebody once told me, sometimes it's a good thing to rock the boat a little just so you'll know that you are on the right boat and that the boat is strong enough, but don't overdo it because it might just topple over. Sometimes, in order to test whether or not you've made the right decision, you have to challenge it. Call it a test if you like. 

But sometimes, in discovering whether or not you're on the right path, there is a possibility that you'll stray from your destination. The key is to delve into your heart and soul, but at the same time do not be too hard on yourself. You never know, you might be pushing something good away without you even realizing it.

2) HAVE FAITH at all times. It has to come from you because it is unfair to ask someone else to have faith for both of you. There might be a point in time in which the person's faith won't be enough to cover both your asses.

3) If you've come across someone that's good for you, don't let go of them in the search of someone better. There's always going to be someone better out there, ALWAYS. But that does not mean that they will be good for you. The grass will always be greener on the other side, and if you keep seeking for something better, you might lose something that is already the best for you.

4) For whatever reason, do not string someone along just because you're lonely. Don't give false hopes and by restraining from being selfish, hopefully you will be rewarded with happiness. Ive seen it happen before my eyes waaaay too many times already. People leading other people on for selfish reasons. It might be fun at first, but mark my words, if you are not sincere, it will end on a bitter note.

5) It's hard to let people in. But if you pick the right person, that one person could lift all your worries away and light your entire world. And to have that person let you in as well is something magical that money can't buy.

Are you fleeing from Love because of a single humiliation?
What do you know of Love except the name?
Love has a hundred forms of pride and disdain,
and is gained by a hundred means of persuasion.
Since Love is loyal, it purchases one who is loyal:
it has no interest in a disloyal companion.
-Rumi

6) At the end of the day, everything happens for a reason. If things go your way, simply be grateful and treasure it like a gift from God (which it is). If it doesn't, then you should figure out the errors in your way and right your wrongs. Shame on you if you refuse to learn from your mistakes. It can only make you a better, stronger person and that's a gift more precious than anything you could ever think to ask for. 

7) It is NEVER too late. We all have regrets, but some of us still have enough time to erase them. 


Sunday, March 6, 2011

people can't be there for you, if you don't let them in.

it's not fair that you wallow by yourself,
and you push people out,
and then you blame them for not being there for you.

it really is not fair.

people always leave. but sometimes they come back.

Speak when you're angry - and you'll make the best speech you'll ever regret.

when you are angry, stay silent.
why?
becauseeeeee..

1) even though you're raging inside, the least you could do is to rage gracefully.
2) it gives you time to come up with good comebacks.
3) 99% of the time (excuse the made up statistic), you'll end up saying something you'll regret or something you dont mean or something that you simply cant take back or something that .. well you get the drift
4) angry people dont look good. (dont believe me? go ahead! scrunch your forehead and flare your nostrils in front of the mirror. and THEN you tell me whether or not you look good!)
5) because you wouldnt want me taunting you later with 'I-Told-You-So's, would you?

;)

Mesej komuniti ini dibawakan kepada anda oleh Jabatan Kesihatan Mental.
Sila take note.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

i miss writing for the sake of writing.

i do.
writing without any pretense has it's own ways of liberating you.
you know, some people attempt suicide in the search of freedom, some write.

okay.
that sounds a bit grim.
hahaha.

ive been somewhat trapped in between growing up and craving for the ability to freeze time.
it's kind of a limbo, really. (not the same ones like in Inception)
there has been plenty of contentment and just as much confusion.
and i guess for the longest while, i havent been able to put it into words.

im rambling now, arent i?
you know, i tend to ramble when im sleepy (not that i am at the moment, though). i'll talk nonsense (and non-stop) until at some point i realize that i'm not making any sense at all.

i'd then go all
'am i making any sense to you? cuz im not making much sense to myself. i have the tendency to do this each time im sleepy. are you following what im saying? cuz if you're not, perhaps you should force me to go to sleep. that way, you can skip the whole rambling session...' 

and ill go on and on until somebody either :
a) stop me
b) pop sleeping pills in my mouth/drink
c) hand me a pillow

see. there i go again.
perhaps i am sleepy after all and was just being in denial.
pillow. now. please.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Random #4 : My Favourite Book

If you ask me (i know you didnt, but shh! it's a matter of expression, so just let me be will ya?) I honestly think that reading widens a person's perspective and makes them more mature when it comes to analyzing issues.

I don't just mean books specifically. Any kind of reading material should be able to give you that extra edge that you need to be a better prepared person to deal with Life in all its forms.

Anyway. My friends and I went book shopping a few hours back (right after we got back from eating strawberries on top of Cameron Highlands no pics sorry kitorang miskin takde camera). BARGAIN ALERT!

I managed to get my hands on a vintage copy of Romeo and Julia (that's not a typo), which was 'DI-CHETAK DI-SEMENANJONG TANAH MELAYU' in 1960. Yeah, you guessed right. It was a copy of Romeo and Juliet translated into Bahasa by a certain Trisno Sumardjo.

What i love about this tattered issue is that it kind of reminded me of 'Hikayat 1001 Malam' that was also translated into BM that i read when i was a kid. That wasnt even the best part! The best part is that it only cost me RM4. I have no idea whether the translation is any good as I havent even taken my copy out of it's glorious plastic wrapping yet, but i'll let you know how it goes once im through with it.

Back to what i was saying previously, I always find myself daydreaming about a future in which i have read ten-folds the amount of books that I already have at this point of time. I imagine the kind of person I'd be then and the kinds of new things that I wouldve discovered via reading.

Truth be told, I am kinda looking forward to seeing what that version of me would be like.

Back to the topic of the post, there are two reasons why i'd dig a book (as much as i would a hot hunk). It would be either because it's so well written that it becomes a source of entertainment for me, or, it could be because it is in some way, life changing (or to be less dramatic and more politically correct : thought-provoking).

And, duh! Having too many choices to pick from makes it all that much harder to pinpoint my favourite book. I love Palahniuk's books, Haunted more than the others. I love Ben Elton's books as well, for the strong points that he brings forward through such pleasing form of language. But at the same time, I also dig The Little Prince (i dont care that it's a book for kids, it is AWESOME when it comes to classifying the different kinds of people you see around you!) and If Only It Were True (which, for me, is like the written equivalent of the film 'Ghost', only better).

Angela's Ashes was one of the first books that opened my eyes to oppression and stereotypes. A Man Named Dave introduced me to the topic of Abuse. Reading 120 Malay Movies gave me a clearer insight of both the filming industry and the Malay culture (and how obsessed we are about being subtle in every aspects).

Oooooh.

I've got it! The most recent book that got me thinking on a loop will be Isa Kamari's Intercession. Seeing as the story involves the act of combining Science and Religion, i could only imagine how hard it was for him to finish the story and to present it to us readers the way that it has been presented. I do not suggest the book for those weak at heart. Haha. (Intercession is to the Muslims SORT OF what Da Vinci's Code was to the Christians. In the sense that it is controversial.)

By the way, I came across BFM's podcast. And I figured i should share with you this particular segment where they discussed 'The Most Overrated Books'. Give it a listen! I think it's a kick-ass discussion that needs to be heard by book lovers worldwide. CLICK HERE.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

lain macam punya culture shock

In Malaysia, the term 'culture shock' is often associated with people who has led a very sheltered life and was then exposed to hedonism at its best.

Oh yes, i have been shocked by cultures before.

I was 12 and it was my first day in high school. I did not understand the term 'couple'. My knowledge in music was non-existant. I could barely converse in English and i did not know the first rule of socializing.

Yeah, i was THAT naive.

Coming from a different primary school than most of the kids there, i was hoping i could start fresh and not be the number one target of the bullies. (in primary school, i was given a hard time for not keeping up with the latest gossip of 'Nsync and not knowing what TLC stands for)

No such luck.

As i walked in with my parents on the Orientation Day, students who passed us by kept wishing my parents 'Good morning, sir' 'Good afternoon Madam'. Yeah. And my parents were beaming, everyone in the school is so polite! And they speak such fluent English! Obviously they would be a great influence to me.

On Monday, as i stood by myself in the middle of the huge assembly area, I could see a bunch of Form Fivers hugging each other, catching up on each other's end-of-the-year vacation. I saw a good looking guy embracing a super model lookalike tightly, kissing her on the cheeks, right in front of the row of schoolteachers.

I dont know what i was expecting. Perhaps from the stories Ive heard about other schools, i half-guessed that one of the teachers would walk to them and smack them on the head for 'inappropriate behaviour'. Nobody seemed to care.

A few weeks into the semester, a gossip was going round, saying that one of the girls in the next class has proudly announced that she was finger-effed (please pardon the language, this is just for the sake of telling the story) by another classmate.

And i didnt know the F word. I didnt understand the concept. I didnt know what to make out of that piece of rumour flying about.

Almost every weekend, i would hear about some party somebody's throwing. But i was never invited, so it was never my concern. Heck, even if i was, my parents would not have allowed me to attend anything that involves dirty dancing at that tender age.

There were all kinds of people. 15 year old boys who drove Skyline to school, trying to provoke the seniors to race him. There were people making out in classrooms after school (so u really had to be careful upon entering any deserted rooms after hours). There were cliques like the ones you see in Hollywood movies depicting a typical American school. There were the handball team who went to tournaments dolled from top-to-toe in complete, matching Nike baby-Ts, pants and shoes (it seemed then as if Nike was the main sponsor for our team).

The opponent team often mocked our school with statements like 'ek eleh, ni nak main handball ke nak pergi model ni?' hahahahahah.

I vividly remember a particular Bahasa Malaysia class. The teacher was trying to explain 'kabus' but nobody seemed to understand what the word meant. Eventually, she went 'dont you guys know what fog is? Haaaa, that is what kabus means!' It was entertaining! All this while, ive been hearing about English teachers who has had to teach in Malay, and there i was, sitting in the midst of a reversed situation.

I was in the Entrepeneur Club, and there was this one project that we worked on where we make bracelets and sold them to raise money for the club. One time, i lost my pliers and couldnt complete a particular bracelet on time. The girl who ordered the bracelet then confronted me asking for the bracelet. I explained the situation to her, to which she practically shouted (in front of the entire class),

"Bitch!! I dont care if your pliers are missing! My bracelet was supposed to be done by now! Are you stupid, bitch?? Next time, if you cant follow through, dont attempt to start a business in the first place!!"

I was traumatized by that particular episode for years. These days, I could just laugh about it along with the person who terrorized me but back then, it was a bleak memory that petrified me to no ends.

Despite ALL of the stories i've just told you (and a lot more that i havent), i loved the school from the core of my heart. Apart from the random bitchiness, they were mostly pleasant people who was horrifyingly intelligent. A friend of mine, at the age of 13 wrote to the publisher of countless History books, pointing out facts and details that they have gotten wrong. She was in love with the Renaissance era and was reading Russian literature (she even tried to get me to read them too but it was a tad bit too heavy for me back then)

They were in general, open to opinions and they respect other people's views of the world. Heated discussions are inevitable but at the end of the day, you learn that you don't necessarily have to be right all the time. It is when you do not have any opinions that it becomes Hades for you.

All in all, being there gave me a wider perspective of life. It taught me to stand up to those who put me down and to have my own voice in stating opinions. I was taught to not be too much of an orthodox when it comes to assessing situations and that everyone is different in their own ways and the least you can do is respect that and simply agree to disagree.

Life in university was an even bigger shock for me. But lets save that story for another day, shall we? Penat lah type.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

God does not change men's condition unless they change their inner selves.

I am the kind of person who cannot handle rejection of any kind. The fear of things not going my way is then used as a cork to stop me from taking any form of action.

For example, i've had the idea to write a story for quite sometime now. I've got the characters and the plot all mapped out, but somehow, out of the fear that i am not able to construct the plot well enough or not being able to narrate the story well to the point that i'm a disappointment to my writer self, i refuse to get started.

I refuse to click on the 'New Document' button and type my thoughts away. It sounds pathetic, yes. Most of the time, i would avoid my problems, half expecting that it will sort itself out if i just leave it there long enough (which we all know is absolute crap). 

I mean, this is hardly a scene in Cinderella where a Fairy Godmother flicks her wand, chants 'Bippity Boppity Boo' and POOF! the pumpkin changes into an obscenely fabulous carriage!

Despite being aware of all that, it's not really a habit I could kick. Regardless of how many times i tell myself that it's better to simply face the inevitable and change along with the circumstance, my entire body will automatically stiffen when the mind gives out the command.

Though, if there's one thing that i learnt this week, perhaps the same shit is happening to you because you keep making the same mistakes in dealing with it. For as long as you refuse to learn from your mistakes, adapt to it and change your ways, your problems will never go away.

And if it provides any additional incentive to get you going, the relief that you get the moment you start taking control of the situation, is completely monumental!

I actually have plenty more to say but at the moment, I'm kind of distracted thinking about how my friends are doing in Egypt. And the fact that the online media restriction that our government plans to impose on us is looking frighteningly like what's happening in Egypt now is of no assurance whatsoever.

Give me a good few hours to finish reflecting. Perhaps then, i will be back to share silly stories instead of talking about life 'revelations' which might have just put a few of you guys reading to sleep already. Tee hee.

Til next time! :)

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

only believers go to heaven?

for the past two months or so,
i have had to take my sister to the hospital every other day for her physiotherapy appointment.
(she had a bad swimming accident, during which she almost got her finger cut into two. she's fine now if that's what you're wondering. just remember, dont wear rings when you swim! dont say i didnt warn you!)

anyway.
during one of the visits, we got to talking with this old Chinese uncle.
from talking about the Reproduction Chapter of high school Science, we somehow ended up talking about religion.

the uncle then told us about one of his encounter with a Catholic friend.
the friend preached to him about his religion and claimed "You have to embrace it because anyone other than the believers will NOT make it to heaven!"

the uncle then thought for a while and replied, "Well, in that case i dont want to go to heaven! All of my friends are from other religions."

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

sebab ni lah aku nak tinggal kat New York bai.

tahu tak, jadi manusia tak berduit tu sesungguhnya sangat lah tak best?
tahu tak?
mesti lah tahu kan.

bila nak beli lollipop harga 80 sen satu pun tergaru-garu kepala (yang tak gatal).
sudahnya, tabung adik jugak yang jadi mangsa.
takpa takpa.
dah kerja nanti, kena ganti balik 15 kali ganda amount yang dah dikorek keluar dalam keadaan darurat dan terpaksa.
hmph.
alasan nak sedapkan hati.

paling benci bila sedar status diri yang tak berduit merupakan punca utama tak boleh nak pergi Negara Singa untuk menghedonismakan diri di Laneway Festival hujung bulan ni.

macam perah limau nipis atas hati yang berdarah bila dah spend lebih 3 bulan mendengar lagu lagu Foals, Temper Trap, Blonde Redhead, Ladyhawke, Holy Fuck, !!! , Warpaint SAHAJA sebab konon kononnya nak get in the mood.

Sudahnya, mood dah terlebih lebih,
perginya tak jugak.

Kesian passport, kegersangan cop dari Singapura.
Haih.

Weh, ada siapa siapa baik hati nak belanja tiket Laneway? :)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Education System in Malaysia is flawed.

A pretty heavy title huh?
Pardon my lack of creativity in making up a more enticing headline, but I don't have time for flowers and rainbows. I need to type this out before my writing juice (and patience - ive been sitting on a very rigid, uncomfortable chair for the past 10 hours or so) dries up.

I've never been a big fan of politics.
But IF (that's a huge IF there), in the future, I find myself chucked into the middle of politics battle, I'd run straight to the Ministry of Education and attempt to be the last Gladiator standing.

Why?
Because i think our education system is seriously flawed.
And it's about bloody time somebody does something about it.

Take, for example, our History class. I still remember being fourteen and having a lioness for a History teacher. She used to make us read a whole chapter and write out notes summarizing said chapter.

That homework compromised the wellbeing of my wrist. I wouldve sued the teacher for exposing me to the threats of Carpal Tunnel if only ive learnt about the term back then (perhaps i wouldve heard of Carpal Tunnel if it wasnt for the restrictive education system).

I probably wouldnt have complained if writing those dates and stories and eccentric names meant that i would be a walking History textbook. But considering all that we did during those days were to copy out shortened notes from the Sasbadi reference book, i can't say that i picked up much.

Now compare it with the way Americans and Australians learn History. They'd have an open debate where students take up the cause of previous Presidents/Prime Ministers and argue back and forth on said issues. 

The way we do it in Malaysia is simply by reading (memorizing, more like) through one source of book (read : the textbook). But wey hey! All the easier to indoctrinate thoughts in the society eh? 

Effi Nazrel, better known as Obefiend has presented the matter in shorter paragraphs than i can possibly try, so READ THIS to get a better gist of what i'm trying to say.

Why can't we have an open-ended question for our History lessons? For example (aish, you people always want examples kan? Cannot take my word for what it is kan? Haha), 'During the economic downfall in 1997, the former Prime Minister, Tun Mahathir Mohamad refused to take loans from the IMF. Discuss if you agree or disagree with his action in terms of Malaysia's economic condition in less than 350 words.'

Whether the student agree or disagree, points should be given on how well-researched the essays are and the amount of solid facts based on reliable sources included in the answer.

Edited : After some points brought up by Mr. GGK, I'd like to point out that the example i headlined above is merely that - an example. By this, im trying to say that i am not encouraging Politics 101 to be taught in schools. With that said, here's another example that will encourage research : 

Explain the difference between strategies (whether it is by physical force or psychology stratagem) used by the Portuguese, Dutch, British and Japanese in their attempt to infiltrate Malacca.

That way, students will be forced to do their own research and along the way, they will probably pick up a new information or two. Over time, we will all be smarter and well-informed instead of being a blind nation that simply believes whatever they see and hear without giving it any further thought. 

In case you have not noticed, even our essays comes with a meticulously outlined complete guide that consists of the Introduction, 5 Main Points of Argument and the Conclusion. Isnt that proof enough that the system should be made obsolete? 

I still remember those chunky books with '350 Contoh Karangan Terbaik SPM' and '150 Model Essays for SPM' plastered all over its front pages. 

Dude!!
Writing an essay is supposed to be all about letting your creative juice flow! 

What's the point of having an essay-based question in the examination if the topics of the essays are the same year in year out. Plus, the answers can easily be obtained from a whole bunch of books ready to be copied to paper. Seriously, tell me, what's the point??

I remember a friend telling me that he came across a bunch of people who could barely speak decent English and yet has gotten A1 for their SPM English paper (for 1119 too!!). Turns out, back in the days of SPM, what they did was memorize essays from said books word-by-word.

Do you understand my frustration now? 

Essentially, studying is supposed to ensure that you become more knowledgeable. And i think it's safe to say that an 'A' on a scrap of paper is NOT a gauge of your intellect level. 

No wonder lah Malaysia is filled with plagiarists. 
Exam punya essay pun tiru sebiji sebiji from buku, ini kan pulak blog posts orang and other people's work. 
Haha.

back from hibernation

1. sorry for having been gone for so long. ive been happy and distracted, that's why.

2. i finally have something to be depressed about, and thus am back scribbling and typing away.

3. no, im not gonna tell you what is it that im depressed about, so that should save 5 seconds of your time that it takes to ask me the dreaded question. perhaps a lil bit later, when i'm not feeling as peaky as i am now? :)

4. 2010 has been utterly dreadful to me, and for the past 11 days, ive been living in the fantasy that 2011 will be the my Resurrection Year. It doesnt look too good now, but i'm forecasting better days to come give and take a few months. 

5. Life is uncertain and it sucks that we have to waddle through the uncertainties. But im pretty sure that the only reason we keep ending up at dead ends is that we have yet to learn from our mistake and made the best decision there is.

6. I am thinking of writing a novel. Do you guys think i should? I mean, if i were to write one, would any of you consider forking a small sum of your hard earned cash simply to read my ramblings? Eh ni honest question ni tau. I need answers so jawab laa eh if that's not too much to ask for. Hehe.

7. This is actually just a mock post to let you guys know that im virtually back from my month long hibernation. Am gonna finish the real post that has been sitting as a draft sampai dah berhabuk dah pun. Mneyh.

Later people. 

Love,
Tasha