About Me

I have done a lot of things in my life and have also worked in many different jobs to make a living and to experience life. This blog is just some of my musings, sometimes funny, sometimes inspirational, sometimes sad, sometimes angry, sometimes simple but all the time, it's just me.

Friday, January 29, 2010

So long Black Rajah of Borneo

Al E Baba, the Black Rajah of North Borneo will be saying goodbye to Miri and hello to West Malaysia.

Check it out in his blog Al E's blog.

Al E has been a very faithful and loving dog who has been full of life and fun in Miri. He has definitely touched many lives in Miri in the 20 months of his life in Sarawak. Of this, 18 months have been with us when we got him from Imperial Mall.

I will surely miss him for a month or so as he gets used to life in West Malaysia.

Al E is like my own child, he has been one little cheeky fella who has showered a lot of love to everyone he meets.

Who wouldn't love this adorable little fella?

Picture above taken about 3 days after I got him, he must have been about 2 months old.

 And this is the Black Rajah of North Borneo a few days ago.

Take care and be well.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

There is a country called Rafflesia

There is a country called Rafflesia, similar to the flower which smells like rotting flesh, the country has also degraded and smells of rotting flesh.

Rafflesia is unlike any other country in the world, it is far from Utopia, in fact quite the opposite.

It’s population of nearly 30 million is supposedly multi-racial but controlled 65% by a single race which follows a special religion that seems similar to another world religion but is unique and special in Rafflesia.

The country has 9 rulers who rotate every now and then and vote one of them to be the supreme leader.

The leaders have generally been formed by pirates, crooks and murderers from hundreds of years ago and thus some of them remain as such.

The supreme leaders, similar to the kings and queens of France and England of long time ago, use the money of the people of which is called tax.

The supreme ruler and his consort are paid a yearly stipend of 1.5 million dollars yearly from this taxpayers. And on top of that, the upkeep of their palaces of 3.7 million dollars.

The other rulers also get stipends from the taxpayers.

Above all this, all their health, shelter and food needs plus travel needs are taken care off.

Recently, a few of Rafflesia’s rulers have died and taken over by their sons or brothers. Some of these dead were among known people who have shot at people, slapped people and even killed people. The others have run publicly listed businesses to the ground but made millions for themselves.

Their sons have been no better than them.

Some rulers when they get ill, do not trust the Rafflesia doctors to treat them and therefore go overseas with their families to get treatment.

It must be that Rafflesia doctors are too lousy or too laymen to treat such supreme beings.

As such, some of the rulers have to go to near and far countries for treatment. One country is Old Lion which is near Rafflesia. Old Lion’s population is less than 5 million, but it’s doctors are much better. The other country is a place where there are many germs, a country that started 2 world wars, a country which provides much better treatment than any professionals can in Rafflesia.

Also, Rafflesia 9 rulers have now confused the 60% of the population on the use of a singular word used to call God for thousands of years.

You see what happened was for about the last hundred and fifty years or so, it is common for everyone in Rafflesia to use the word Ayah.

Recently, a man came home from work and his children ran to him and called out ‘Ayah! Ayah!’.

His neighbour got very upset and said to him, “Can you please tell your children not to call you ‘Ayah’?”

The man asked, “Why?”

The neighbour retorted, “Because my children call me ’Ayah’ too. They might get confused and mistake you to be their father.”

Then the man told his neighbour, are you not ashamed to say that your children do not know who is their 'Ayah'.

So you are saying by using the word 'Ayah' ,your children will call me ayah too without knowing who is their father?

The neighbour said yes, only my children should use the word 'Ayah'.

The man said, then there is something wrong in what you are teaching your children. They are not sure and do not know who their 'Ayah' is !!

But the rulers than decreed that the word Ayah can only be used for the 60% of the population and the people using it have to use father, or something else because the minorities were confusing the majorities of who the real father was.

But Rafflesia has a vision, a vision that was set by it’s ex-leader who is old and senile. The vision to be developed. This vision is now is tatters.

Not that it was ever a solid vision. Now, there is a new mission, a mission to be One “stinking” Rafflesia – it seems like Rafflesia is succeeding in it’s mission so far, to be one stinking rafflesia, one big joke.

Succeeding mainly because of the lackadaisical attitude of its people. The people have given up hope, they do not stand for much, they are a peaceful bunch that is scared to shake the boat. But when the sleeping tiger awakens, then maybe there will be some changes.

Maybe …. Hopefully ….. then again …. Who knows what can happen in such a fictitious place like Rafflesia. After all, in fiction, the writer changes the story but how about in the real world? In the real world, the people are the only one who can change the history.

Thus begins the first part of stories from Rafflesia.

Take care and be well.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

UK Suicide Bombers Set for Strike

Got this humourous pice of news from a friend. Thought it would be funny to share.


Muslim suicide bombers in Britain are set to begin a three-day strike on Monday in a dispute over the number of virgins they are entitled to in the afterlife. Emergency talks with Al Qaeda management have so far failed to produce an agreement.

The unrest began last Tuesday when Al Qaeda announced that the number of virgins a suicide bomber would receive after his death will be cut by 25% next January from 72 to only 60. The rationale for the cut was the increase in recent years of the number of suicide bombings and a subsequent shortage of virgins in the afterlife.

The suicide bombers' union, the British Organization of Occupational Martyrs (or BOOM) responded with a statement that this was unacceptable to its members and immediately balloted for strike action. General Secretary Abdullah Amir told the press, "Our members are literally working themselves to death in the cause of Jihad. We don't ask for much in return but to be treated like this by management is a kick in the teeth."

Mr Amir accepted the limited availability of virgins but pointed out that the cutbacks were expected to be borne entirely by the workforce and not by management. "Last Christmas Abu Hamza alone was awarded an annual bonus of 250,000 virgins," complains Amir. "And you can be sure they'll all be pretty ones too. How can Al Qaeda afford that for members of the management but not 72 for the people who do the real work?"

Speaking from the shed in the West Midlands in which he currently resides, Al Qaeda chief executive Osama bin Laden explained, "We sympathize with our workers' concerns but Al Qaeda is simply not in a position to meet their demands. They are simply not accepting the realities of modern-day jihad, in a competitive marketplace. Thanks to Western depravity, there is now a chronic shortage of virgins in the afterlife. It's a straight choice between reducing expenditure and laying people off. I don't like cutting wages but I'd hate to have to tell 3,000 of my staff that they won't be able to blow themselves up."

He defended management bonuses by claiming these were necessary to attract good, fanatical clerics. "How am I supposed to attract the best people if I can't compete with the private sector?" asked Mr Bin-Laden.

Talks broke down this morning after management's last-ditch proposal of a virgin-sharing scheme was rejected outright after a failure to agree on orifice allocation quotas. One virgin, who refused to be named, was quoted as saying "I'll be buggered if I'm agreeing to anything like that ..... it's too much to swallow."

Unless some sort of agreement is reached over the weekend, suicide bombers will down explosives at midday on Monday. Most branches are supporting the strike. Only the North London branch, which has a different union, is likely to continue working. However, some members of that branch will only be using waist-down explosives in order to express solidarity with their striking brethren.

Spokespersons in the North East of England, Swindon, North Kent and the entire Australian continent stated that this would not affect their operations as "There are no virgins in their areas anyway".

Achmed would say, "Silence! I killlll you!"

Take care and be well.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Dealing with change - SARAH model

The last few years have certainly been challenging and a lot of changes faced and managed.

Perhaps the greatest challenge is: rapid change.

Over the years, I have dealt with a lot of change. Some techniques can help move one from being reactive to being proactive to change.

First, we have to know and accept that change involves loss. Even positive change I have had like going for a 3 month assignment in Netherlands involved loss such as loss of loved one, loss of friendship for that period of time. But I had to understand my loss, I had to experience my loss and check it against the gains that I got from the change.

Then the second thing will be to accept or reject the change. If the potential gains do not outweigh the losses, you may choose to reject the change. However, some changes like a death of a loved one cannot be rejected.

Often, however, the preferred option is acceptance. This does not happen overnight.

God grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change. Courage to change the things I can and the Wisdom to know the difference.

Then always approach change as a process. Don't expect immediate happiness of the change. We may need to bear with temporary discomfort.

Some changes may be welcomed and same are obviously not. Change can be disorienting and uncomfortable or even painful, initially. But, this too shall pass.

There are stages we move through.

The following SARAH model, outlines classic stages of change:

Shock - numbness, confusion, disorientation

Anger - or (directed inward) - depression, sadness, fear

Rejection - including denial of emotional impact

Acceptance - or (negatively) - resignation, i.e., hopeless "acceptance"

Hope - positive focus on the future

It is important to also develop a positive outlook. Negativity kills, literally!

Stress, brought on by negative thoughts and actions, can lead to greater possibility of illness.

Turn those killer thoughts into more positive and realistic internal dialogue.

Practice the following process that has been shared by others:
- Recognize: realize that you're thinking negatively
- STOP: visualize a STOP sign and tell yourself to Stop It!
- Restate: reframe into a positive statement
- Reward: even if it's just giving yourself a pat on the back

It is always important to make a plan. Translate the positive attitude with a positive plan of action.

As with any good plan, include short-term goals and timetables.

Develop a support system. Surround yourself with positive people, who care about you. And let them in. Share the challenge you're facing, your stumbles and your triumphs.

Finally, be flexible. Accept that life is a series of detours. The best laid plans too have detours.

Remember, we can handle this!

Take care and be well.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Hope for Haiti

Yesterday I was watching the telethon Hope for Haiti.

There are a lot of things people have done to help Haiti but after having read news, watching the news, seeing the telethon - the simplest thing one can do is provide some money to the right organisation.

If you would like to help, you can go to the following link or in Malaysia, I am sure the Red Crescent (Red Cross) is also collecting some funds.

Hope for Haiti

Among the performances yesterday, Justin Timberlake and Matt Morris performed Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah.

Donate Now: 1-877-99-HAITI in US/Canada, or go to http://www.hopeforhaitinow.org/

Hope that Haiti will be able to rebuild.

Take care and be well.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Carrot, egg or coffee

Someone send me this. And I was thinking if one can always be a certain way. Read on before I say my 2 cents worth in the bottom.

A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her.

She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed as one problem was solved, a new one arose.

Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to boil. In the first she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs, and in the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil, without saying a word.

In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl.

Turning to her daughter, she asked, "Tell me what you see."

"Carrots, eggs, and coffee," she replied.

Her mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. The mother then asked the daughter to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard boiled egg.

Finally, the mother asked the daughter to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its rich aroma.

The daughter then asked, "What does it mean, mother?"

Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity -- boiling water. Each reacted differently.

The carrot went in strong, hard, and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak.

The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior, but after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened.

The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water, they had changed the water.

"Which are you?" she asked her daughter. "When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?"

Think of this: Which am I? Am I the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength?

Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat?

Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a breakup, a Financial hardship or some other trial, have I become hardened and stiff?

Does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and hardened heart?

Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you.

When the hour is the darkest and trials are their greatest, do you elevate yourself to another level? How do you handle adversity? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?

The person that sent this to me said that they perceived me to be the coffee. I thought wow, that is very nice.

But you see, life and circumstances are never the same all the time.

When you are dealing with different types of people, you must have the felxibility of being either. There is not hard and fast rules. If you are dealing with crap, may as well be hard like the egg. If you are dealing with a different situation, a different person, you tend to be either the carrot, the egg - of course being the coffee is the best most of the time, but not practical.

In conclusion, no need to be carrot, no need to be egg and no need to be coffee. Just be yourself and act as per the situation in your best ability.

Take care and be well.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Jin or Genie

I am sick and tired of writing about politics. Makes me sick to my stomach, disgusted and bored of it.

Todays topic is about Jin's or Genie.

I was informed by a Malay friend that there is a Muslim Jin.

What is a Muslim Jin? Someone that can read Quran? Can a Muslim Jin use the word Allah?

Anyway, what is the favorite drink of a Muslim Jin?
Ginger Beer

What is favorite drink of non-Muslim Jin?
Gin and Tonic

What is the favorite game of a Jin?
Gin Rummy

What is the favorite cooking spice of a Jin?
Jintan Manis

What is the favorite car of a Jin?
Gen 2

What is the favorite gambling area?
Gen ting

If Jin buy shares, what shares will they buy?
Gindalbie Metals

What type of orange drink the Jin likes the most?

What is Jin's best friend (same as man's best friend)?

In Gilligan's Island, what was the Jin's name?

A Jin's favorite song?
Jingle Bells

A native Jin is known as?

When a Jin gets old, he is?

When a Jin recognises you, he is?

A Jin's favorite vegetable?

Jin got teeth problem because of?

When Jin want to send you some information, they will be?

When Jin jump into the pool?

People believe Jin's exsist because they are?

Most moving vehicles you drive have a Jin's famous invention which is?

A jin who acted to be human?
Jins Shamsuddin

And last but not least

What do Muslim Jin's get in heaven?
99 Virgins

I would like to apologise for any Jin's or Genie's who may be insulted by this blog. But in all honesty, I think you likely have a better sense of humor than we humans do.

Take care and be well.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Dr Mahathir "Hitler" Mohamad

Mohamad Iskandar must be turning in his grave.

You see, Mahathir's father, was of Indian origin, being the son of a Malayalee Muslim (who migrated from Kerala).

Mahathir is a mamak, a half breed mix between Indian and Malay.

Today he was quoted as saying
"Jews have always been a problem. They have to be confined to ghettos and periodically massacred. But they still remained, thrived and held governments to ransom.

"Even after their massacre by the Nazis of Germany, they survived to continue to be a source of greater problems for the world. The holocaust failed as a final solution," he said.

You see, if the holocaust succeeded, the half breed Mahathir would surely have not existed - he would have been killed by the holocaust.

So, it is funny to hear senile old Mahathir Hitler Mohamad to say what he did.

He also went on to say the following for 9/11:
He believes that if the Americans can produce such a movie, with all its technological wizardry, then staging a so-called terrorist attack would not be a difficult task.

"I am not sure now that Muslim terrorists carried out these attacks. There are strong evidence that the attacks were staged. If they can make 'Avatar', they can make anything.

"Killing innocent people to provide an excuse for war is not new to the US," he said.

Wow, so the Jews who produced the movie also staged 9/11 and killed thousands of innocent American's in 9/11 and thousands more American and other countries soldiers including innocent Afghani's and Iraqi's.

Wow, Dr Mahathir Hitler.

Thanks so much. Now it is crystal clear to me who is the clown master among all the wonderful leaders you have developed in the last 30 plus years.

May God bless Malaysia, Allah U Akbar.

Take care and be well.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Politicians and Diapers

I think politicians and diapers have one thing in common.

They should both be changed regularly and for the same reason (they're full of shit).

I wonder if Scott Adams through Dilbert can come out like the solution below to manage our country.

Wait a minute .... it seems we are already being managed by monkeys.

Take care and be well.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Job Posting: Highly rewarding job

A typical job posting in the next generation 1Malaysia newspaper.

Wanted Urgently.
Highly rewarding jobs, earn millions.
No experience required.
Actually no need education also can.
No IQ or no brains, no problem boleh apply.
We have at least 30 senior positions and 30 plus junior level positions.
You will be free to say what you want at anytime.
If you are like the Malay fella in the video below representing the Malay majority, you are the perfect candidate.

We also sympathise that many circuses around the world like The Ringling Brothers and Baileys Circus are running out of spectators and therefore many clowns are being laid off. YOU SHOULD APPLY!

Other clowns around the world who have become unpopular and scary thanks to Stephen King's scary movies about clowns, YOU SHOULD ALSO APPLY!!

All Clowns will be gauranteed a final interview.

We are developing a new concept (actually we copying from China a bit) called 1 Malaysia.

1 Malaysia, but 2 systems - like China with Hong Kong and Taiwan.

Job Title: Menteri (Minister) or Timbalan Menteri (Deputy Minister).

Apply here

Take care and be well.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

1 Malaysia

Previous home minister - We put the Chinese newspaper journalist in ISA for her own safety.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Opposition MP Teresa Kok says food in jail is worse than dog food. And upon release, keeps quiet and does not take up the case to improve food in jail.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Home Minister says Allah in Malaysia is different from Allah in other Muslim countries and we cannot compare apples to oranges.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Opposition Penang Chief Minister says that all races will be treated equally and duly does nothing about 100 year old Indian settlement.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Defense Minister states that the lost jet engines cost 50 million each. However, we can purchase the whole jet with engines for around 2 million. Hmmm. Then he corrects his statement and says the engines costs 300k each.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Opposition leader and former Deputy Prime Minsiter called me a keling boy and now says he is for all races.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Tourism Minister aks hoteliers to raise prices so that foriegners do not think we are too cheap.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Pevious Works Minister who is the head of the Indian party during the construction boom said in Malay that we in Malaysia have a shortage of simen and therefore we need to import simen from Indonesia and Thailand.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Speak no English - said well educated ex Selangor Chief Minister when asked in Australia why he was carrying so much money.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Melaka chief minister banned for taking part in his party's election for money politics. But allowed to continue being the chief minister.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Former PM Che Det says that Courts are not the avenue - "Allah" controversy cannot be resolved through the law.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Police have determined the “physical attributes” of the suspects involved in the arson attack on a church in Desa Melawati last Friday" said the Deputy Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar. Yes, they have 2 hands, 2 legs, 2 eyes, 2 ears, 1 nose .... no brains!

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Singapore’s Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew that Penang’s infrastructure is found wanting have led to the Chief Minister and his predecessor pointing fingers at each other.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

The taxi drivers who cheat tourists should be lined up and shot. They are the new enemies, the same as communists. If they can be shot, all the better, said previous tourism minister Kadir.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

The best way to improve your golf is to chop down the rainforest. We get too much rain in Sarawak and it stops me from playing golf, said Sarawak tourism minister Amar James Wong.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Opposition chief minister in Kelantan said that only women who are ugly should be employed by the state government because they will not be able to get rich husbands and need to support themselves financially.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

74% of Malaysia is covered by forests, said the director general of forest research institute of Malaysia. He went on to say this includes rubber and oil palm plantations. "You know why I include them? Any stand of trees by definition is a forest," he said.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

It is normal for tours to be cancelled. If they don't come, it won't hurt anybody, said Rais Yatim when New York symphony cancelled their performances in KL after the Malaysian government requested them to remove Schelomo from their performance.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

People should not get excited over the BMF (Bumiputera Malaysia Finance) scandal since the money is all gone said former minister Sanusi Junid on a scandal that costs losts up to 2.5 billion ringgit.

Satu Malaysia, jadi pegangan
Rukun Negara teras panduan
Satu Malaysia Benteng negara
Rakyat Malaysia Taat Setia

Please add any more wonderful quotes or stories of our wonderful Gomen or opposition.

We are, after all 1 Malaysia.

Now to end with a joke:
Einstein is known for his genius mind,
Newton is known for his extraordinary mind,
Bill Gates for a brilliant mind,

Mahathir? The master mind,
Abdullah Badawi? Never MIND, sleepy mind
Najib? No mind ... RM control.
Samy Vellu? ALL MINE.

Take care and be well.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Visit Malaysia NOW

This is already a little old but I have been wanting to write this.

I would like all tourists who still feel Malaysia is cheap, exotic and a nice place, to come and visit it now.

Quite some time back, friends of mine from Europe were surprised and how nice and cheap out hotels here were and they visited Malaysia twice.

But have no fear, our Minister of Tourism has a cure for this illness.

This illness of tourists finding Malaysia cheap and visiting over and over again must be stopped at once she said.

As such, on January 9, hoteliers were urged to review their room rates to more appropriate levels by Tourism Minister Dr Ng Yen Yen.

According to the news report, she said she had heard from some foreign tourists that they were shocked to see hotels with good service and facilities charging low rates.

“An interesting thing is that when tourists who want to visit our country look at the competitive hotel prices, they will think that the services cannot be that good,” she said in calling on the hotel industry to reconsider its pricing.

“We must not undervalue ourselves,” she told reporters after a Tourism Malaysia meeting with 13 state directors yesterday.

She said hotel operators could perhaps have international and local room rates.
Malaysians could get certain discounts by showing their MyKad, Dr Ng said.

She added that as long as hotels maintained their service, customers would keep coming back.

She said the ministry had no right to decide on hotel room rates, but it would write to the Malaysian Association of Hotels and other industry players on the matter.

Yet again, an out of box thinking by our wonderful and intelligent minister of tourism.

Let's raise our hotel rates so that tourists do not feel we are too cheap yah.

Maybe it is time for some of our other wonderful services to raise rates as well ... like have local and tourists price for taxi's, for restaurants, for GRO's, for karaoke rooms, for massages in our "wonderful" sauna's that always offer extra services etc etc.

We don't want those foreigners to think we are too cheap.

Sigh! This is one of the reasons I hated Egypt, the different rates for foreigners for each and everything including buying a bottle of water.

I told wifey at that time I fear that Malaysia is going in this direction.

I was hoping later when I am dead but with suggestions like above and the different petrol prices for foreigners including tourists who may rent cars, I fear it may come by sooner than later.

As such, Visit Malaysia NOW, and you have WON.

Take care and be well.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

I am forced by law to be disloyal and unpatriotic!

The Rukun Negara or National Principles state the following:

BAHAWASANYA NEGARA KITA MALAYSIA mendukung cita-cita hendak -
- mencapai perpaduan yang lebih erat di kalangan seluruh masyarakatnya ;
- memelihara satu cara hidup demokratik ;
- mencipta satu masyarakat adil di mana kemakmuran Negara akan dapat dinikmati bersama secara adil dan saksama ;
- menjamin satu cara liberal terhadap tradisi-tradisi kebudayaannya yang kaya dan berbagai corak ; dan
- membina satu masyarakat progresif yang akan menggunakan sains dan teknologi moden.

MAKA KAMI, rakyat Malaysia, berikrar akan menumpukan seluruh tenaga dan usaha kami untuk mencapai cita-cita tersebut berdasarkan atas prinsip-prinsip yang berikut :

In English:
WHEREAS OUR COUNTRY MALAYSIA nurtures the ambitions of -
- achieving a more perfect unity amongst the whole of her society;
preserving a democratic way of life;
- creating a just society where the prosperity of the country can be enjoyed together in a fair and equitable manner;
- guaranteeing a liberal approach towards her rich and varied cultural traditions; and
- building a progressive society that will make use of science and modern technology.

NOW THEREFORE WE, the people of Malaysia, pledge to concentrate the whole of our energy and efforts to achieve these ambitions based on the following principles:

My musing:
However, the recent Allah issue has made forcibly by law made me disloyal and unpatriotic. You see, I do not want to be disloyal. Nor do I want to be unpatriotic.

I would like to adhere to the national principles.

But recent news and comments by our royalty including the Selangor sultan stating that Allah is to be used by Muslims only forces me to become a disloyal citizen.

First of all, the royalty is supposedly in charge of Islamic affairs in their state and yet they allow house of worships like mosques to be used to stage protests.

I here thought that Mosques are and should be used as a place for worship only.

Also, this high and mighty royals supposedly with their ideal religious values and standings .... yah right ... I have heard enough stories, and there are enough facts about people being killed, slapped etc, cars being taken without paying taxes etc ... yes, this is the high and moral values.

But lastly, even if I do not judge their standing and accept that they have high moral values. The statement that Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah wants the state to abide by the Selangor Fatwa Council’s decision that the word ‘Allah’ is exclusive to Muslims and the 1988 non-Muslim Enactment already prohibits non-Muslims from using the word “Allah” forces me to be disloyal.

You see, I thought that the Fatwa and Syariah decisions only affected the Muslims and as such we have normal constitution and laws that affect the non-Muslims. So technically, it is not a law if it is just a Fatwa.

And finally, because of the sultan's statement, I would not be able to sing his state anthem anymore and ask for Allah to give the sultan a long life.

So, you see, I am forced to become unpatriotic and disloyal - I AM FORCED. As such, maybe for me to be patriotic again, maybe we need to be in a Republic .... hmmmm ....

By the way, just some state anthems below that we non-Muslims can no longer sing because it contains the word Allah. I pity the sultans of these states as unfortunately we can no longer sing for their long live or good health.

Selangor state anthem
Duli Yang Maha Mulia
Selamat di atas takhta
Allah lanjutkan usia Tuanku
Rakyat mohon restu bawah Duli Tuanku
Bahagia selama-lamanya
Aman dan sentosa
Duli Yang Maha Mulia

Kedah state anthem
Allah selamatkan Sultan Mahkota
Berpanjangan usia diatas Takhta
Memelihara agama Nabi kita
Negeri Kedah serata-rata

Perak state anthem
Dilanjutkan Allah usianya Sultan
Adil dan murah memerintah watan
Dita'ati rakyat kiri dan kanan
Imam yang saleh Allah kurniakan
Allah berkati Perak Ridzuan
Allah selamatkan Negeri dan Sultan

Johor state anthem
Allah peliharakan Sultan
'Nugrahkan Dia segala kehormatan
Sihat dan ria
Kekal dan makmur
Luaskan kuasa
Menaungkan kami
Rakyat dipimpini berzaman lagi
Dengan Merdeka bersatu hati
Allah berkati Johor
Allah selamatkan Sultan

Pahang state anthem
Ya Allah Yang Maha
Kuasa Lanjutkan usia KeBawah Duli Yang Maha Mulia
Dirgahayu Darul Makmur
Aman dan bahagia sentiasa
Ya Allah selamatkan Kebawah Duli Raja kami

Terengganu state anthem
Allah peliharakan Raja kami
Memerintah Terengganu Negeri
Allah peliharakan Raja kami
Sejahtera Suami Isteri
Allah peliharakan Raja kami
Sentosa rakyat Negeri

Kelantan state anthem
Lanjutkan usia al-Sultan kami
Sultan Kelantan Raja ikrami
Aman sentosa Tuhan sirami
Kekal memerintah kami
Kasih dan taat setia disembahkan
Keriangan diucapkan
Segala kebesaran Allah cucurkan
Bertambah kemuliaan

Take care and be well.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

There is no God but Allah

A good friend of mine (who happens to be a Muslim, not that it matters) who recently went to Morocco for a holiday sent me this email and pictures attached:-

I was in Tanger, Morocco in Nov 2009 recently and visited St Andrews church which is still in used, having being built in 1894.

It is an Anglican church.

Interestingly, framed by a delicate cusped arch, the recessed reredos of the sanctuary is facing towards Mecca
and on the altar stood a cross with a motif background in Arabic meaning "There is no God but Allah" (Ya Ilahi El Allah).

Men of understanding would rejoice at the congruence of faith and Godship.
see picture attached.

Now our super intelligent home minister is saying that we should not compare apples with oranges and other Muslim countries are different from the way Malaysia practices Islam.

Hmm, Mr Home Minister, firstly, we are comparing apples to apples i.e. the use of the word Allah in different Islamic countries such as Malaysia, Indonesia, Egypt, Morocco, Syria, Pakistan etc.

Secondly, there is only one Islam ... since when Malaysia started practicing a different Islam from the rest of the world baffles me.

Take care and be well.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A business proposal for small car owners

The government plans to introduce a subsidy for petrol based on whether you are Malaysian as well as the size of engine capacity.

This is so that Malaysians rather than foreigners enjoy the subsidy.

As for the engine capacity, the logic is that poor people drive smaller cars and the richer people drive larger capacity luxury cars.

Earlier I called up my dad and proposed a new business plan.

The plan was for 5-10 of his friends to buy a Kancil. The purpose of the Kancil was just to pump petrol at a subsidised rate at the petrol station and then siphon it to their luxury higher capacity cars. I am sure it would be worth every penny.

In fact, my Datuk friend who is retiring soon and drives a small Viva can also make a small business out of it after he retires.

All he has to do is wait by the new petrol station that is opening up near my house and offer "cheaper" petrol to the larger capacity cars.

He can probably make a few cents every liter of petrol for this.

After all, there will not be a limit of how much petrol he can pump in a day.

This would also work for retirees in Johor Bahru, they can start this business to help siphon petrol to Singaporean cars and earn a lot more.

Within days of this stupid proposal by the stupid domestic trade minister, a simple person like me has already come up with so many ways of making money out of this.

We really have morons up there.

I do hope that the subsidy proposed follows through, it will allow the "poor" small car owners to earn some money. Maybe they will become richer this way since the government is not doing much to reduce their other burdens.

Maybe I will buy a Kancil for my retired dad to earn some money this way too, it sure will be enough to cover the ever increasing expenses.

You will soon see this services offered right in the parking area of petrol stations.

Thank you Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob for such a wonderful subsidy proposal and to help small car owners to become businessmen.

Take care and be well.

Monday, January 11, 2010

7 and counting

An Anglican church at the junction before I turn to go to work in Lutong was also a target for arsonists against the Allah row. Windows were damaged.

So 7 and counting. 4 churches in Klang Valley, 1 in Taiping, 1 in Melaka and now 1 in Miri.

There is this Kayan Christian guy from Long Atip who works in a similar company that I work in. His name is Allah Emang. Does he need to change his name or religion?

The word Allah precedes the religion Islam, and many more staunch Islamic countries including the largest Islamic country in the world (Indonesia) allows other religions in their countries to use the word Allah.

Yet here, a country that has been relatively peaceful, this has created such a big issue and created a national crisis.

People have blamed the leading party UMNO. People have blamed the leading party's newspaper Utusan. And people have blamed the police cannot even provide protection.

There is an agenda from the people that are doing it. The agenda may not be clear right now, but it is the agenda of crooks.

All the Malay friends I know have no issue with this Allah issue.

So, bear in mind this is not a Malay race issue or a Malaysian Muslim issue, because only a few over-excited zealots are being used by the masterminds of this attacks.

Remember what consolidated the stupid predecessor USA president's power? 9/11, without it, Bush would have been kicked out after 1 term. But 9/11 made him strong, allowed him to make money off the 2 wars that USA started.

So, what is the agenda of the Malaysian masterminds behind this?

I hope to continue living in a peaceful multi-racial country that I grew up in. Will I still have the opportunity to do so?

Take care and be well.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

A waste society

I just read an article yesterday that Wal-Mart and H&M stores in US throwing out perfectly good set of clothes.

The article reflected what I was thinking.

Amid the recession and the cold winter months, Cynthia Magnus made a shocking discovery at the H&M in Manhattan's Herald Square. It wasn't a sale on the season's hottest trends--it was garbage bags upon garbage bags of unsold merchandise, most of it slashed with razors to ensure that no one would ever wear or sell it, the New York Times reports.

"Gloves with the fingers cut off," Ms. Magnus said, reciting the inventory of ruined items. "Warm socks. Cute patent leather Mary Jane school shoes, maybe for fourth graders, with the instep cut up with a scissor. Men's jackets, slashed across the body and the arms. The puffy fiber fill was coming out in big white cotton balls."

This morning when wifey came back from KL, she buys me the usual Burger King veggie whopper, which is basically a whopper with cheese without the whop or without the meat patty.

Burger King cooks made it in mistake and put the meat in. And the supervisor duly threw the whopper into the rubbish bin.

McDonald's and every fast food joint also have this policy of throwing perfectly good meals away if they have been on the counter for too long.

All of us are slowly becoming a waste society. We buy cheap DVD players, or cheap CD players and cheap televisions. We normally just throw them away when it spoils.

I even recently threw away by RM70 Tobishi DVD player which I had bought from Boulevard on the 1st week I moved to Miri on October 2007. It was working but not well enough.

We tend to throw things which are working perfectly well when we get new things.

Worse is when people just abandon their pets.

We are a waste society.

We do not recycle enough, we do not reuse enough and we do not reduce enough.

The thing is the earth is many billions of years old and we sometimes take it for granted. That may be fine but why don't we donate. Donate food, donate clothes, donate unwanted electrical items.

I should start to. I do not do it enough because it is easier to throw in Malaysia, rather than find someplace to donate things, find someplace to re-cycle things.

Maybe I will. Actions rather than words. Just start donating and re-cycling more.

Take care and be well.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

How many churches need to burn?

How many churches need to be burnt down before the government and police takes action, not be NATO (no action talk only)?

How many cow heads need to be slaughtered?

How much is the Muslim religion(which is generally so tolerant) going to be smeared because of these religious zealots?

What will it take? A riot, a revolution or a change in administration?

1 Malaysia - what a farce.

Take care and be well.

Friday, January 8, 2010

1 Malaysian, 3 to 6 Bangla/Indon boys

1 Malaysian and 3 to 6 Bangla or Indon boys.

That is the scene in the new 1Malaysia petrol station.

You see, the government announced that petrol prices will be according to the car engine capacity, the larger the capacity, the lower the subsidy or maybe no subsidy.

They also announced that to prevent non-Malaysian from siphoning our cheaper petrol, we will now need to show our MYID.

And for years, our petrol station have been self service. This was done to reduce the foreign workers the last time.

But with the new rules, this just goes out the door.

Everytime you take your car to pump some petrol or diesel, one Bangla or Indon boy will be there to check your MYID to confirm you are Malaysian.

Another Bangla or Indon boy will open your bonnet to check your car capacity.

Then yest another Bangla or Indon boy will be there to key in all this information into this highly sophisticated computer system that will calculate the petrol price based on your nationality and your car capacity.

Once this is done, there will be another 3 Bangla or Indon boys to verify and check to ensure that the 1st 3 Bangla/Indon boys did their job correctly.

After all this, finally you will be allowed to fill petrol in your car.

Mind you, it will still be self service. You will still have to lift the nozzle yourself and pump in the petrol yourself.

So, in 1Malaysia, every Petrol station which has an average of 10 pumps will have 60 Bangla or Indon boys working there.

This is 1Malaysia. After all, this is how we increase our Muslim population. Screw ketuanan Melayu, soon it will be Ketuanan Bangla or Ketuanana Indon. But one thing for sure, we will not have the Allah issue anymore because we will have significantly more Muslim population.

This is the 1Malaysia that our government has been branding across the nation.

Just makes me think of the song below and laugh out loud.

Satu Malaysia,
kita inspirasi pada dunia
Nama kan dijulang,
kita menjadi kebanggaan
Satu wawasan bersama bergandingan..
Genggaman tanganmu,
semangatku terus membara janji ku pada mu,
harapanmu ingin ku laksanakan.

Take care and be well.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Uncle Sam-y's new club

Seems like uncle Sam-y is really fedup with all the Indian parties in Malaysia including his own MIC, what more all the others i.e. PPP, IPF, Hindraf, Makkal Sakti etc etc.

So, he is deciding to set up a new party, not only Malaysian but also international.

The name of the party will be Persatuan Untuk Kaum India - Malaysia & Antarabangsa.

In his usual news conference he called, this is what he had to say (please remember how he speaks yah):-

"Saya sudah banyak kesal dengan ini semua orang India, semua orang India mudah lupa. Dia orang tidak ingat kepada jasa jasa yang saya bagi kepada dia orang.

Itu pasal, saya hari ini menubuhkan satu parti baru untuk semua orang India walaupun di Malaysia atau Antarbangsa. Nama parti baru yang saya menubuhkan ialah Persatuan Untuk Kaum India - Malaysia & Antarabangsa.

Saya sudah pergi ke ROS untuk menubuhkan parti baru ini dan ia sudah diluluskan. Kerana nama parti ini sangat panjang, kami akan guna acronym untuk parti baru ini, iaitu PUKI - MA.

PUKI - MA akan kerja kuat untuk seluruh kaum India di seluruh dunia dan saya akan bertungkus lumut untuk parti PUKI - MA hingga saya ke akhirat.

Terima kasih dan tolong lah bagi sokoongan sepunuhnya kepada PUKI - MA."

I can just imagine uncle Sam-y giving this speech.

Take care and be well.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Can I use the other 99 names instead?

I can now no longer use the word "Allah" to refer to God. Not that I ever did but now I cannot.

If I was a Christian, Jew, Hindu etc. in Jordan, Egypt, Libya or Morocco, I would be allowed to use the word "Allah" in those countries.

But in Malaysia, we are a secular country and we have a sensitive bunch, so, we should not use that word to refer to God.

According to the sources, Allah means the only real supreme being, all-powerful and all knowing Creator, Sustainer, Ordainer, and Judge of the universe.

In Hinduism, the commonly refered to names for God can be Bhagwan, Ishvara,
Maheshvara, Parameshvara, Paramatman, Para Brahman, Adi Purusha, Vishnu, Rama, Shankar, Shiva.

But now Iswara is a Proton car and Hindu's around the world did not make a big fuss and protest against Proton from using the name.

The first Malacca sultan convieniently named himself Parameswara and yet the Hindu's did not complain.

For me, it is not a big deal that I cannot use the word Allah to refer to God. But do I have to stop using the word to refer other things i.e. "Alla, don't be like that lah." or "Alla mak, I forgot to bring my wallet."

In many Hindi movies I see the terms Masha'allah being used - I guess we have to ban those movies or the censorship board must bleep out those words.

Since I cannot use Allah, can I use the other 99 names for God instead?

1 الرحمن Ar-Rahmān The All Beneficent
2 الرحيم Ar-Rahīm The Most Merciful
3 الملك Al-Malik The Owner, The Sovereign, The True and Ultimate
4 القدوس Al-Quddūs The Most Holy, The Most Pure, The Most Perfect
5 السلام As-Salām The Peace and Blessing, The Source of Peace and Safety
6 المؤمن Al-Mu'min The Guarantor, The Self Affirming,
7 المهيمن Al-Muhaymin The Guardian, The Preserver
8 العزيز Al-Azīz The Almighty, The Self Sufficient, The Most Honorable
9 الجبار Al-Jabbār The Despot, The Irresistible, The Compeller
10 المتكبر Al-Mutakabbir He Who Reveals His Greatness
11 الخالق Al-Khāliq The Creator
12 البارئ Al-Bāri' The Rightful
13 المصور Al-Musawwir The Fashioner of Forms
14 الغفار Al-Ghaffār The Ever Forgiving
15 القهار Al-Qahhār The All Compelling Subduer
16 الوهاب Al-Wahhāb The Bestower
17 الرزاق Ar-Razzāq The Ever Providing
18 الفتاح Al-Fattāh The Opener, The Victory Giver
19 العليم Al-'Alīm The All Knowing, The Omniscient
20 القابض Al-Qābid The Restrainer, The Straightener
21 الباسط Al-Bāsit The Extender / Expander
22 الخافض Al-Khāfid The Abaser
23 الرافع Ar-Rāfi' The Exalter
24 المعز Al-Mu'izz The Giver of Honour
25 المذل Al-Mu'dhell The Giver of Dishonour
26 السميع As-Samī The All Hearing
27 البصير Al-Basīr The All Seeing
28 الحكم Al-Hakam The Judge, The Arbitrator
29 العدل Al-`Adl The Utterly Just
30 اللطيف Al-Latīf The Gentle, The Subtly Kind
31 الخبير Al-Khabīr The All Aware
32 الحليم Al-Halīm The Forbearing, The Indulgent
33 العظيم Al-'Azīm The Magnificent, The Infinite
34 الغفور Al-Ghafūr The All Forgiving
35 الشكور Ash-Shakūr The Grateful
36 العلي Al-'Aliyy The Sublimely Exalted
37 الكبير Al-Kabīr The Great
38 الحفيظ Al-Hafīz The Preserver
39 المقيت Al-Muqīt The Nourisher
40 الحسيب Al-Hasīb The Bringer of Judgment
41 الجليل Al-Jalīl The Majestic
42 الكريم Al-Karīm The Bountiful, The Generous
43 الرقيب Ar-Raqīb The Watchful
44 المجيب Al-Mujīb The Responsive, The Answerer
45 الواسع Al-Wāsi' The Vast, The All Encompassing
46 الحكيم Al-Hakīm The Wise
47 الودود Al-Wadūd The Loving
48 المجيد Al-Majīd The All Glorious
49 الباعث Al-Bā'ith The Raiser of The Dead
50 الشهيد Ash-Shahīd The Witness
51 الحق Al-Haqq The Truth, The Real
52 الوكيل Al-Wakīl The Trustee, The Dependable
53 القوى Al-Qawwiyy The Strong
54 المتين Al-Matīn The Firm, The Steadfast
55 الولى Al-Waliyy The Protecting Friend, Patron and Helper
56 الحميد Al-Hamīd The All Praiseworthy
57 المحصى Al-Muhsi The Accounter, The Numberer of All
58 المبدئ Al-Mubdi' The Producer, Originator, and Initiator of All
59 المعيد Al-Mu'īd The Restorer, The Reinstater Who Brings Back All
60 المحيى Al-Muhyi The Giver of Life
61 المميت Al-Mumīt The Bringer of Death, The Destroyer
62 الحي Al-Hayy The Ever Living
63 القيوم Al-Qayyūm The Self Subsisting Provider of All
64 الواجد Al-Wājid The Perceiver, The Finder, The Unfailing
65 الماجد Al-Mājid The Illustrious, The Magnificent
66 الواحد Al-Wāhid The One, The Indivisible
67 الاحد Al-'Ahad The One, The Unique
68 الصمد As-Samad The Eternal, The Eternally Besought of All, The Everlasting
69 القادر Al-Qādir The All Able
70 المقتدر Al-Muqtadir The All Determiner, The Dominant
71 المقدم Al-Muqaddim The Expediter, He Who Brings Forward
72 المؤخر Al-Mu'akhkhir The Delayer, He Who Puts Far Away
73 الأول Al-'Awwal The First (Alpha)
74 الأخر Al-'Akhir The Last (Omega)
75 الظاهر Az-Zāhir The Manifest, The All Victorious
76 الباطن Al-Bātin The Hidden, The All Encompassing
77 الوالي Al-Wāli The Patron
78 المتعالي Al-Mutā'ali The Self Exalted
79 البر Al-Barr The Most Kind and Righteous
80 التواب At-Tawwāb The Ever Returning, Ever Relenting
81 المنتقم Al-Muntaqim The Avenger
82 العفو Al-Afuww The Pardoner, The Effacer of Sins
83 الرؤوف Ar-Ra'ūf The Compassionate, The All Pitying
84 مالك الملك Mālik-ul-Mulk The Owner of All Sovereignty
85 ذو الجلال والإكرام Dhū-l-Jalāliwa-l-'ikrām The Lord of Majesty and Generosity
86 المقسط Al-Muqsiţ The Equitable, The Requiter
87 الجامع Al-Jāmi The Gatherer, The Unifier
88 الغني Al-Ghaniyy The All Rich, The Independent
89 المغني Al-Mughni The Enricher, The Emancipator
90 المانع Al-Māni' The Withholder, The Shielder, the Defender
91 الضار Ad-Dārr The Distressor, The Harmer, The Afflictor
92 النافع An-Nāfi The Propitious, The Benefactor, The Useful
93 النور An-Nūr The One Who Creates the Light of Belief in the Hearts of All
94 الهادي Al-Hādi The Guide
95 البديع Al-Badī The Incomparable, The Originator
96 الباقي Al-Bāqi The Ever Enduring and Immutable
97 الوارث Al-Wārith The Heir, The Inheritor of All
98 الرشيد Ar-Rashīd The Guide, Infallible Teacher and Knower
99 الصبور As-Sabur The Patient, The Timeless.

Take care and be well.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Dirty beaches due to oversight - My arse

The local newspaper carried the story below from my hometown of Penang with the headline "Dirty beaches due to oversight":-

A communication slip-up resulted in beaches along the Batu Ferringhi tourist belt not being cleaned during the recent festive break.

Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said the contractor Pen Mutiara Fishermen Association – appointed to assist the Penang Municipal Council to carry out beach clean-up – stopped work two months ago when it was not informed that its contract had been extended by six months.

Spot the difference: A combo picture showing a section of the the Batu Feringghi beach before and after the clean-up.

“Its contract had ended in October but when the state government made the decision to extend it until April, it was not relayed to the association.

“I have since intervened in the matter following complaints from tourists. All litter have since been cleared up by the association and the council,” he said after attending a dialogue with Gat Lebuh Nordin public housing residents here yesterday.

While the cleaning of the beaches may be due to an oversight and miscommunication, the dirty beaches is not due to an oversight.

The dirty beaches are due to people throwing their junk on the beach, in the picture alone you can see milk cartoon, plastic bags and plastic bottles.

This is not natural waste or industrial waste coming from the oceans, this is things that bloody idiot negligent people leave behind when the go to the beaches.

For me, it is clear that dirty beaches are caused by us, humans, the ignorant arrogant and idiots who cannot throw their trash in the right place.

Take care and be well.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Why Sarawak will not see RM1 loaf of bread?

In my recent trip to KL, I have noticed that generally things have gone more expensive than my earnings have.

I am significantly spending more money for basic necessities than I was 10 years ago, maybe close to 100% more give and take a few items. And yet my salary has not gone up as much.

However, the great thing about KL is the Hypermarkets. I remember when the 1st hypermarket came, Makro, it was killed off.

But the tidal waves of hypermarkets did come. The Carrefour's, the Giant's, the Tesco's ... hopefully we will get the Wallmart's etc as well one day.

You see, the competition amongst this 3 hypermarkets have actually kept prices of things relatively competitive except for where the government is controlling the prices.

In Tesco, you can get a plain white loaf of bread for RM1. It is even quite a nice bread compared to the Gardenia's etc.

The thing is, these hypermarkets will never come to Sarawak. Because here, everything is still controlled.

If they did come here, for sure, the GK's, the Boulevard's etc. will be forced to compete or in all honesty, likely close down.

In GK, a cheese that I bought in Brunei Supasave at RM9 after conversion costs RM18. That is double the price.

A loaf of bread in Sarawak increased by 20 cents the same day the government increased sugar prices. I guess, here they use 1 kg of sugar for each loaf of bread.

In Sarawak, Air Asia can only offer 1 flight a day from Miri to Kuching. They were offering more flights earlier but were told to cut down as well as increase their minimum price because the bus companies were going out of business.

So, I can actually fly from KL to Singapore or even KL to Kuching to Kota Kinabalu for a cheaper rate than I can fly from Miri to Kuching.

There is so much of price control here, unofficial price controls. Even chicken and meat prices are significantly higher. I know friends who actually buy imported or expensive fish and meat from Brunei because despite the conversion it is cheaper, just like the cheese.

So, quite unfortunate, everything is controlled. As such, we will never see RM1 loaf of white bread in Sarawak.

Take care and be well.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Of crocodile tears and doggy years

The expression “shedding crocodile tears” took a whole new meaning for a family in Kampung Simpangan when their pet refused to eat and wept on the day its owner died.

The two-tonne crocodile called Ah Kong is very much a part of the farming family and it became very attached to its owner Ho En Kui.

It was Ho’s son Su Hung who found the baby crocodile along Sungai Pegalan after a flood in 1961 when he was a 14-year-old boy.

Su Hung brought the 30cm-long crocodile home. Since then, Ho had been looking after it until his death.

I have heard of many tales of animals especially well taken care of pets shedding tears, being sad and waiting for their dead owners to return. I have heard many tales about dogs and cats.

I was deeply moved by Marley and Me and recently, there was yet another true story which has been Americanised with Richard Gere about the Japanese dog Hachiko.

Hachikō(November 10, 1923–March 8, 1935), known in Japanese as chūken Hachikō was an Akita dog born on a farm near the city of Ōdate, Akita Prefecture, remembered for his loyalty to his owner, even many years after his owner's death.

In 1924, Hachikō was brought to Tokyo by his owner, Hidesaburō Ueno, a professor in the agriculture department at the University of Tokyo. During his owner's life Hachikō saw him off from the front door and greeted him at the end of the day at the nearby Shibuya Station.

The pair continued their daily routine until May 1925, when Professor Ueno did not return on the usual train one evening. The professor had suffered a stroke at the university that day. He died and never returned to the train station where his friend was waiting.

Hachikō was given away after his master's death, but he routinely escaped, showing up again and again at his old home. Eventually, Hachikō apparently realized that Professor Ueno no longer lived at the house.

So he went to look for his master at the train station where he had accompanied him so many times before. Each day, Hachikō waited for Professor Ueno to return. And each day he did not see his friend among the commuters at the station.

The permanent fixture at the train station that was Hachikō attracted the attention of other commuters. Many of the people who frequented the Shibuya train station had seen Hachikō and Professor Ueno together each day. They brought Hachikō treats and food to nourish him during his wait.

This continued for 10 years, with Hachikō appearing only in the evening time, precisely when the train was due at the station.

Eventually, Hachikō's legendary faithfulness became a national symbol of loyalty.

Hachikō died on March 8, 1935. He was found on a street in Shibuya. His heart was infected with filarial worms and 3–4 yakitori sticks were found in his stomach. His stuffed and mounted remains are kept at the National Science Museum of Japan in Ueno, Tokyo.

The statue of Hachikō in Shibuya. In April 1934, a bronze statue in his likeness was erected at Shibuya Station.

And here we are, humans, we think we rule the world.

Take care and be well.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Back to Miri

I actually feel a little jet lagged coming to Miri this time.

Must have been the late night packing and yet forgetting to bring things.

Early flight on Air Asia, there is one flight you can generally count on to be on time, the early morning Air Asia flight from KL to anywhere is usually not late because the plane is already parked there and not coming from somewhere.

Had a sandwich and ribena before boarding. Then supposed to have vegetarian fried rice on board but they gave me vegetarian sze chuan rice which was not as tasty as the fried rice provided last year.

Then Mack and Kupps came and pick me up, so we went to Ipohtown for some breakfast, come back and enjoyed a movie in the beach pad.

Likely the last time Mack will have the chance to be in the beach pad before my move back to KL.

Then after movie, they left.

But Uding dropped by to play with Al E and send me my car keys before going off to play tennis with a hopeful/potential guy .... hmmm.

Not much to cook at home - between instant noddles and bangers and mash - so I went the English option.

Slept a little, got up and slept again.

Still tired on a Sunday morning but now seem to be recovering from "jet lag".

Tomorrow, back to work. Since no handshake yet, do I do my new role or my old role? I guess I just start handing over and closing off things.

Take care and be well.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year

So this is 2010.

What I have done in 2009 matters not any longer, if it was something hurtful, I seek your forgiveness.

What I will do in the future does not matter yet.

All I have is the present, and all my actions now matter the most.

No resolutions, no lists, just actions now, in the present.

Take care and be well.