Saturday, May 30, 2009


You know how people on a strict diet can break and suddenly go nuts? I think I'm experiencing a financial version of it. It's like being deprived and suddenly all hell broke loose. Have been keeping a tight rein on my spending, until suddenly I found myself spending much more than I was supposed to. Darn it!!

From one baju and one spectacle frame, the shopping spree balooned to include contact lenses + solution, tudungs, brooches and a not very desperately needed bottle of perfume. Aarrgh!! Stop before you do some real damage, girl! Sheez...

Friday, May 29, 2009

Malufying Moment...

I needed new spectacle frames, so have been scouting for sales. Looked up the internet and found a Focus Point warehouse sale scheduled for this weekend. Went there to buy and.... saw there was no crowd. There was a banner at the corner, so I thought it was on. When I looked into the building, there weren't any goods on dispplay, no sale, nothing. Puzzled, I asked the receptionist and she said there was no sale scheduled this weekend. I went over to the banner and found that it was for Kose, not FP. Suspecting I might have the year wrong, I headed back to the office to check. True enough, the sale was held last year. Adeh.. what a waste of time and so malufying some more... But I do need some frames, though. Hmm.. tengok la esok, kalau tak, I tunggu my payments first. My budget is a bit tight due to lots of farewells and b'days & wedding in Singapore. La la laaa...

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Days of Innocence

I overheard a few girls gossiping this morning, and I suddenly remembered days of yore, when the boys were innocent and gentle teasing was as far as they went. One of the girls recounted this tale. A guy she passed by greeted her with a salaam, then said, "Ha, jawab salam gatal, tak jawab berdosa!" The silly situation brought a smile to my lips. The girl rightly exclaimed, "Then what was I supposed to do?" It was a Catch 22 situation, isn't it? Albeit a silly one.

I hardly noticed it, but it's evident that in our culture, gentle teasing is the norm for showing interest. The boys would tease and tease until you can no longer keep a straight face and break into a smile. I remember one time I was coming back to KL, sitting next to some guy from some maktab. He was trying to chat me up, and I was trying not to succumb. A few of his friends joined in with their nonsensical chatter until by the time we reached KL, I just had to smile and say a few polite words. I wasn't exactly thrilled at being a target, but neither was I upset at their forward behaviour. The teasing was gentle and they were actually funny!

More recently, a bunch of us were sitting in the pantry having breakfast when one of the guys walked in to make his morning cuppa. Some of us started ribbing him about the way he made his coffee, and he responded with the sort of cryptic remark that could be a double entendre, yet totally harmless in itself. Something in the lines of "we should start with something sweet", supposedly referring to the way he put in the sugar first. It takes intimate knowledge of Malay culture and norms to grasp the hidden meaning behind such a mundane pronounciation! I think I fell a little bit in love with him after that :D

Sometimes I wish I could go back to the days when the boys were pleasant and caring, to have my Abang2 behind me. But then, we all grow up, grow older, deal with responsibilities, become jaded and different. I do wish I could have more of such gentle humour around me, life is so stressful and bland sometimes. I guess things like this can't be forced, we take whatever we can find. Even staid old Pakcik has moments when he goes all silly for no good reason. Whatever it is, sure is nice to have some honest laughter in your life :)

Monday, May 25, 2009

I Couldn't Care Less...

I don't know what's happening to me. I spend weekends cooped up in my room either reading or watching downloaded videos. I wake up late & eat junk. What happened to the house-proud woman who used to spend hours cleaning up everything while cursing her s***** sister for not helping? Now I don't curse her anymore, I'm competing with her 'couldn't care less' attitude! Maybe I'm just too exhausted to care anymore. I work my butt off during the week, I can't be working my ass off weekends too. Anyway, she always pretend to help these days. Swipe the floor, take out the mop... but the floors still look grubby afterwards and I end up doing it over. What's the point? Buat sakit hati aje. I so need to get my own apartment. If only I could afford one...

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Wanted: Energy

I was waiting for a series of posters to come in for translation weeks ago, but they never showed up. Then, in the middle of a crazy week, the guy sends them to me, expecting them in 2 days time. I tried working on them as soon as I got home, which is atmidnight, but keep falling asleep. Finished one and started on the second during my lunch break. Someone used my computer while I was away and closed my files. When I wanted to continue working on them, horror of horrors! My half done document was a blank again!! I had to start over! I was quite upset and messaged the other girl way past midnight. She apologised and offered to make it up to me. But then, what's the point? She can't do my work for me... I didn't have the heart to make a big deal out of it. I should have saved it before I left the desk, shouldn't I? (My mean side says she could have saved my doc b4 touching it too).

Wanted to stay up and finish it last night, but fell asleep, thanks to my relaxing swim. Wasted the morning watching TV. Now, when I want to start working again, I look at that blank document and I get annoyed all over again. It's hot, and I wish I could just sleep instead of re-doing something I had already done yesterday. Sigh...

Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Pen is Mightier Than a Sword

I have always worried about my articles, knowing that if I somehow get the facts wrong, there will be hell to pay. I'm thankful that so far, my editor has been very supportive, but I worry anyway, knowing my weakness and foibles, and trying not to get into trouble.

The other day, I interviewed someone for her life experiences. For whatever reason, I must have asked the wrong questions, because I left with a pretty unflattering view of her. Subsequently, the story too, caught on a rather negative angle. Furthermore, it had a very sensitive subject matter. the story didn't look good at all! In my desperation to put things right, I had to call her again to seek further clarification, and the truth shamed me. I had gone off the mark altogether. Only my boss' intervention saved us from coming up with a terrible injustice. Am so ashamed of myself :( Next time, will have to do better.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Of Crushes and the Crushed

. Had an event this morning, something I couldn't miss out on. Was totally in love with their stuff. Great advertising, guys! After the serious stuff, they had models show off their products, and one of them was the guy above. I knew he was in a few ads, but as usual, I'm totally clueless as to his name. The only thing I noticed was that he looked a lot like Santi - a younger and cuter version, of course. My so called friend now very the sombong sejak ada hot girlfriend sekarang nih. Saba ajelah. So I took his photo to send kat Santi, just to kacau him. ekekeke... Typical me, boleh tak, mamat to tanya if I nak ambik gamba dengan dia, I kata tak nak? Kecik ati kawan tu. But then, shy la. Hingat bebudak sekolah ke nak amik2 gamba dengan selebriti? Lagipun, karang keluar gamba macam susu kawan dengan kopi... Baik tak payah.

But then, kekadang seronok ek, dok main2 and mengarut2 nih? Happy! Sampai ada orang tanya kalau I ada BF baru. Hahahaha.. dengan Pakcik pun dah lama tak jumpa, apa lagi mamat baru. Kalau takat main2 mata tu ada la kot.. hehehe.. Here's to a happy go lucky future!

On Reorganising

After a few weeks of coming home relatively early, reorganising my various spaces and feeling guilty about overdue work, I've come to realize that the hours I spend in the office is not an indulgence, it is necessary. Well, I can say that I was really worn out each time I left the office, that I wasn't in the best of health, that I needed my exercise, and I needed to take care of my pets and home too. On the other hand, I need my job if I'm ever going to get ahead and buy another car, an apartment. What I actually need is balance, I guess. Spending so much time in the office makes me crave entertainment in the weekends, sometimes sampai the chores don't get done. Last weekend, sampai tak cuci baju. Now ni menggagau nak cari baju kerja... Malam karang kena cuci sekejap.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Reading is a Good Habit

A tiny sampling I did in my uni years found that 80% of those interviewed in Puduraya only read URTV. How conducive is that to critical thinking, I wonder.
Some people read 'buku ugama' exclusively. Hmm.. OK. That's good. To a certain extent.
Some read novels, in BM and English. Just for fun, I hope.
Some people read multiple newspapers and subscribe to news feeds on their mobile phones.
A good number of people read magazines - business mags, women's mags, guy's mags, sports.. bla3x. That's good, right? (Some people even end up writing for them. Heh!)

For those who don't read, I don't really blame them. Books are damn expensive compared to our meagre incomes. I wish books were sold in ringgit as per the suggested price instead of being converted to the equivalent. If the price in US is a mere USD4, they're sold for RM19.90 here. A 7 pound sterling book ends up sold for RM64.90 in some outlets. (OK, I didn't really research the exact prices here. My point is, they're expensive.) If only USD 5 books are retailed at RM5 to be commensurate with our smaller incomes. Did you know that our mean per capita income is stated as USD 6540 (about RM24000 pa/RM2K per month) only? That's not much to live on, imagine if you wanted to buy books on top of that? How la?

Thankfully, some shops are cheaper than others. I tend to borong books during warehouse sales, and I buy most fiction from second hand bookstores. Even better are book rentals, but I got tired of going back and forth and not keeping my favourites. I only buy the most important books new, almost everything else is used. Bottomline, it's still possible to read if you really want to.

I guess my point is, we were taught that reading is a good habit, but how come no one taught us that THINKING is a good habit? I suppose most people figure that out for ourselves la kan. But then, ada jugak orang yang tak paham2 that little fact, kan?

They know all the stupid things that's happening around the world, but is blithely ignorant of the fact that kittens had crapped in the back room and SOMEONE is simply not around to clean it up. Does it need to be in the news before you notice that there's a pong in the house?? They go around complaining about this and that, when they themselves cannot be bothered to do better. They complain ofis jauh, bos membebel, kerja boring, etc, etc, etc. Tapi bila tanya WHAT they want to do - blank. Donno. Oh, mommy forced me to take this course. The truth is, she would have been perfectly happy sitting home doing absolutely nothing except read rubbishy novels while the world moves on. No one would let her starve if she didn't cook, and only I would ever kick her out on her sorry ass if she didn't contribute. Even if you expected to marry a prince/duke/handsome rich man, you could have done SOMETHING to achieve that dream. But that's personal...

Anyway, was reading MM's blog, and again, pops up people who lived their lives following the norm and fighting for the 'established' lines of behaviour without giving thought to what they believed in. People who think anything that is told by an ustad is true and it's a sin to question them for fear of damaging their aqidah. It bothers me because I feel these people are not giving thought to what they believe in. Isn't that scary? Sometimes thinking has to come with heart, because sometimes I am also questioned about why I choose to cover up, to pray, to be celibate... But I can explain my decisions because I have thought about them, and thus I'm at peace.

I worry about kids who give in to their boys because 'the other kids do it too', or 'it's expected'. Or because they will lose their boyfriends if they say no. What about the risks and repercussions? Have you thought about that at all? Have you actually considered contraception and preventing STDs? Frankly, I'd rather these kids know their options and do it properly rather than simply follow the 'norm' and end up leaving their illegitimate child in a plastic bag to die on the steps of a surau.

Why do papers and mags that feature tahyul sell so well? Do they make any sense at all? We all read our doa naik kenderaan, but we don't drive like maniacs and hope that we'll arrive in one piece either! When people ban and condemn movies they never even watched, it makes us look like fools who never seek the truth before passing judgement. It hurts me to be judged based on general beliefs and prejudices.

But it's even worse when people who have not read, and cannot think, rule a nation. I can't think of anyone worse than the Taliban in this matter. They are doing a grave injustice to women and children in the name of God, and is there no man with a brain there to stop them? That might happen to us if people who follow blindly rule our country. Nauzubillah. So fellow Malaysians, read, and think. And pray for a better tomorrow.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Skyping Again

Sometimes I really layan strangers on Skype just for the hell of it. God know's I'm too cynical to take any one of them seriously. Semalam, I buli one boy sampai dia senyap terus, dah tak nak layan dah. :p Sori la ye... what to do... Don't really trust people who spend hours online in the middle of the night. And what's the deal with these guys? They think Skype is a social network! It so is not! Can't I keep in touch with old friends without having to layan all these people?

Yea, yea. I know. My fault for allowing them to contact me. I'm just curious to see what these people are like. Unfortunately, most of the time I just feel uncomfortable with their poking and prodding. What's the deal, guys? Can't you make small talk without prying into my personal life?

Maybe we should teach these kids some social skills.
First off, if you want to find a girl, ask someone you've actually set eyes on. She might be happy you asked.
Next, if you speak to a total stranger, make small talk first. Ask about her job, her interests, talk about the weather for God's sake. Like if you want to have sex you should start with foreplay, right? Takkan la terus main hentam ajer... (For all you know that's how they do it lah..) Why in the world should I tell you my marital status in the first 5 minutes?? Next thing you know they're asking you if you're available for a romp. Chee. So annoying.
Then, if you're getting along nicely, baru la boleh tanya personal questions. Nicely. Without being a bossy brat. Geez.

The worst thing is, I feel that I'm not a person to this people. They're just interviewing candidates for their wife/bohsia position. Oh, you're over 26 and single? On the shelf. Expired. Not human anymore. Next...
Sakit hati tak to be summarily dismissed like that? Nasib baik la ada my old man. At least HE treats me like a woman. Sigh... How la...

Monday, May 04, 2009

New Fave Writer

Had borrowed Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt from Lan a few weeks back, and thoroughly enjoyed the book. If ever anyone has the slightest intent to feel sorry for themselves, this would surely cure you. Written in a way that is not depressing, it tells the story of his childhood, growing up in Brooklyn, and later Limerick, Ireland with a drunkard father, suffering mother and 3 other brothers. They grew up in poverty, where their father could hardly keep a job, and often spent his wages on drink, leaving his children to starve. His mother was forced to beg for charity, and for the most part, they did what they could to take care of each other. This journey ends when he finally collects enough money to go back to America, where he was born.

On my annual raid of the MPH warehouse sale, I came across the sequel, 'Tis. I managed to find a copy selling for only RM9 and bought it. I actually enjoyed it more, as this time, he is an adult, and is less of a victim as he forges his way in a foreign world. I actually saw the next sequel, Teacher Man, but didn't buy it, something I rather regret right now.

I like the way he draws readers into his story, in a self-deprecating way, without being pathetic. He doesn't give out airs, and he writes in an endearing Irish twang, the language he grew up speaking. He really deserved the accolades he received for his books. He is definitely a man to remember, and I would be honoured if I ever have the opportunity to meet him. (Yes, he's 78 and still alive in New York).

Friday, May 01, 2009

Love is Blind...

A friend of ours is head over heels in love - with someone she hasn't even met! Needless to say, it makes us antsy. Naturally, we don't want to see her hurt again. And she has been hurt before, by taking up with the wrong guys.

I read her blog and saw that his cousin was going to pick her up at the airport. Now why can't HE go and pick her up himself? Sounds very the fishy to me.. I left a note for her, but god knows if she's in the right frame of mind to take it positively.. I'm just so worried that something bad will happen to her. You can't be too careful these days, right?

On the other hand, we all take unnecessary risks. I've met up with strangers before.. But I've always fled at the first sign of a crock. Anyway, who am I to talk, right? I'm always so guarded that I've never gone past first base with anyone but the most trusted of men. But then, that's how I want it to be. I don't want to regret things when it's already too late.

Back to this friend, she's over the moon. Records conversations on her blog for all to see.. And I get even more worried to see that he refers to her as his wife.. It's just too corny to believe. Any normal guy would actually meet up before saying such things, wouldn't they? Unfortunately, I firmly believe only liars would say such things, because they know, at the end of the day, that is what we want - a real, lasting relationship.

Right now, our dear friend is overseas. One would imagine that if this guy is for real, he could have bought a plane ticket and gone over to see her. I donno la. I know how it feels to be in love. When everything is rosy and nice. I also know how it feels to be let down. Thank God I've never been cheated before, never lost money on bogus men. Emotional heartache is bad enough without financial loss. To our dear friend, I sure hope this guy is for real. I'd hate to see you hurt again...