Saturday, December 27, 2008

Standing Still

It's been awhile since a movie can surprise me and watching how The Earth Stood Still today did just that tonight. The irony of watching an environmental themed movie at The Gardens? Priceless.

For starters, almost everybody in the world who's seen this movie are giving it a bad review. Rightly so:
1) Bad writing
2) Poor acting from the stars
3) Choppy flow
4) Weak continuity
5) Weak chemistry between actors
6) The final scene depiction of the "standing still" time lacked impact

Do I really care? No. There're too many movies being made lately for the sake of cashflow, publicity to launch an actor's career, bad propaganda, politics, and the list just goes on. But I had a good feeling about this movie tonight. I think Scott Derrickson and his team did a good job to deliver the theme to the world that is too arrogant to care.

If the Earth dies, you die. If the human race dies, the Earth survives.

Can you dispute this statement? I can't. If you've seen An Inconvenient Truth, you'd get my meaning. We are just too complacent. We are just too ignorant. We will not care until we feel the threat itself.

I think the movie is about a message to the audience. When David Scarpa wrote the screenplay, he didn't have any Oscar in mind. I think he's a believer of Earth, and Derrickson his disciple. Both wanted to remind the human race that we are very fragile and if we don't stand still and start realizing, we will never change. So what better way to get the message through than using the most powerful tool in the world? Media. Movie. The Silver Screen.

The scene that captivated me the most was the one at Professor Barnhardt's house. I will try my best to re-construct the conversation that took place to the best of my memory:

Barnhardt: You have to give us a chance, we will change.

Klaatu: The decision is made. It is too late.

Helen: You gotta give us a chance.

Klaatu: We have, for a very long time now.

Barnhardt: You just have to give us more time. At the brink of destruction, at the edge of existence, only will we change...tell me, how did you get to where you are?

Klaatu: Our circumstances were different. Our sun was dying. We had to evolve.

Barnhardt: Exactly. You were at the precipice. Therefore, you changed. We are at ours now, do not take that chance away from us. We will change. Give us the time.

Klaatu: [stares at Helen] Your professor is right. At the precipice, we change.

There is your revelation. I realized that in almost everything we do daily, we tend to stick to our norms. Rarely do we really sit back, sit still and reflect on our actions and consequences. We simply do not have the will, as a human race. But when pushed to the edge and tested, we will overcome. When taunted, we will rise. When we reach our "precipice", we change.

Klaatu: I will try to stop it. But it will change things around here forever.

Klaatu's words just before he activated The Sphere and disabled the mechanical bugs and just about everything that is machine or electronic on Earth. That's when you get your the world stood still climax scene. I thought it was beautifully done. I was beginning to wonder how does the title relate to the movie. Well, save the best for last.

I'm not saying this is a really good movie. I'm just saying that this movie isn't that bad until it deserves getting criticized by almost everybody who's seen it. You're missing the point. Then again, who really cares?

By the way, this movie is a remake of Edmund H. North's 1951 screenplay. It was based on a nuclear destruction theme. During that time, nuclear threat was the world's most visible threat. As you can see 5 decades on, we have changed. WE are the biggest and most visible threat to the world now. Hence, the environmental theme. Isn't that relevant? But no, movie critiques had to shoot Derrickson and his team down for changing the theme. Please see the irony he's trying to communicate to us.

I believe we have to start asking ourselves serious questions about our way of life. It may be hard. It may be over-reaction. But isn't it inevitable? Will we allow ourselves to be the fore-fathers of our children and children's childrens' sufferings? Have we been standing still and idling? What's stopping us from acting now, little by little? When will we reach our respective precipices? When I do, will I act?

I challange you all to act. Most of you will fail.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Of Saucers, Pencils and Shots

This year's Operations Annual Conference was a totally different experience for me. I did not have to organize it. I did not have to worry about everything and prepare for all possible scenarios and come up with BCPs. I did not have to work harder than I should be playing. I did not miss out all the fun team-building and bonding activities. I did not have to worry if someone is missing or the agenda is off-track. I did not have to ensure everybody is happy, as long as I am. I did not have to be the last to leave and made sure the place we left behind was in order. I did not have to worry if I could wake up the next day as long as I enjoyed the night before and went crazy.

The business portion of the trip was absolutely cracking. The involvement was twice much more than last year. The time-keeping was impeccably spot on. The senior leaders worked very hard on the workshop pre-work. They were flawless in executing the Conference's agenda and for that, the meeting ended on time and earlier than last year. We had more fun and time enjoying and playing this year than last year. Maybe it is just me feeling the huge difference.

There were great learnings. There were interesting observations. Plans went awry but nothing that is ever planned is perfect. We just have to pat ourselves in the back, close one eye if others didn't realize and rectify it internally. I was caught off-guard and given a surprise and I'm glad I managed to overcome the occasion and expectation and for that, I've learned and become wiser. I'm thankful for the opportunity given, the trust bestowed and the experience gained.

I saw some things that I knew would come sooner or later but didn't expect it to be so soon. But at the same time, I learned more about them all than I ever did in the last 12 months put together. I discovered what it takes to be there, to walk that path and to sustain the route taken.


I learned that wisdom is earned, not given.

I realized that wise men speak because they have something to say and fools speak because they have to say something.

I recognized that I never worry about the height of things to come, only the width.

And finally...
I discerned that if age imparted wisdom, then there wouldn't be any old fools.

Thursday, December 18, 2008


Yesterday I learned that:

When life knocks you down to your knees, it is the perfect position to pray

Thank you for showing me the way and asking me questions that made me see clearer.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Stead of Virtue

God gave us friends for a reason.
It is not something seasonal, it is tangible.
They are the siblings I never have.

Among the reasons I treasure most is the fact how these special people in my life will often guide me back onto the true path when I go astray in actions, words, thoughts and spirit.

They act as a funnel to my improbabilities.
They become the filter to my naivete.
They are my life buoy when I drown in the ocean of self disparagements.

It's their honesty that captivates me.
It's their loyalty that enthralls me.
It's their candor that reminds me.
It's their sincerity that ensnares me.

I am adjudicator to nothing save my own ineptness. The stead of virtue is the inaction of denunciation itself. For this I am grateful to God that I was humbled.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Embers of Faith

It feels like nothing as you are ingenuously unimportant.
It feels like empowerment.
You share with them your point of view and tell them it is for them to decide.
It feels like perfidy, forsaken on a derelict starship in the coldness of the cosmos.
You start to envisage what would have been expressed; the possible and alternate ending.
When all your hopes and dreams are shattered with a double-edged word.
You start by realizing that your reality is very much discernible from truth than it is distorted.
By first writing the lyrics of compassion.
By trumping the temptation card.
It is like having penitence for breakfast, knowing you will not get atonement for dinner later.
Up above where I know the Lord will hear all my prayers.
It feels like lying to my soul.
When you feel the subtle sharp prod in your heart.
It feels like mocking the other in a satirically jesting demeanor.
Belief, religion, upbringing and a proving ground.
When hypocrisy dictates the better part of you.

It feels like takes everything you're made look to yourself...when the candlewick of devotion is all but burnt...

I realized that having only the conclusion to my questions in trial did not suffice enough to placate my anxious soul. It did not garner me the intended closure I wished to seek. Thus, I forced myself to think deep these last few nights. Now, these answers harvested from my forced reflection has endowed me with greater clarity on how best to tread next. In time, I will learn how to flame the embers of faith from the ashes of departed devotion...

Friday, December 5, 2008

An Inconvenient Apology

How does it feel when you are indifferent?
How does it feel when you are callous?
What do you do when someone is ignorant?
How does it feel when you are left out cold?
What do you see when all you see is an empty screen?
How do you know when you are being stood up?
How can you learn if you can’t realize?
How must we sing the songs of forgiveness?
What other ways can you play the friendship card?
How does it feel when guilt has been served?
Where do you look when all you want to see is forward?
How does it feel when you look the other way in denial?
How do you know you have wronged someone?
How does it feel to patronize a friend?
What does it take to seek acknowledgement and responsibility?
When do you decide to play along in silent mockery?

How does it feel…what does it take…where do you look…when do you decide…?

Questions that kept flashing through my mind these last few days in snapshots of perpetuity and anonymity. I had no answers for these questions in trial. I searched deep within the recesses of my heart, I found no conclusion…till last night. Closure is what I seek to reminisce, to be at peace. When all was said and done, I could finally see that it was an inconvenient apology served…

Monday, December 1, 2008


It's a marvel that our country never fail to enthrall the condescending attention of contemptuous cynics from overseas. How do we always never fail to zip in on paltry and trifling concerns while the entire nation and the world is beleaguered with issues of immense proportions? It is sad to see that our Administration and its league of hypocritical and duplicitous Confederates live in their own tiny little world, chasing their own tails around on a daily basis.

The Muslim community is being restricted and suppressed as each day passes by. Not by the Chinese, or the Indians, or the Jews, or the Christians. But by their fellow Muslims/Malays themselves.

After the fatwa prohibition of yoga, the upcoming fatwa-fatwa coming to your nearest theatres in town are as follow:

December 2008
Muslims are forbidden to swim in public swimming pools. At these public pools, non-Muslims wearing brief swimwears that exposes the aurat will be present. This can deteriorate the faith of the Muslims. The best way would be to prohibit Muslims from these public pools.

January 2009
Muslims are forbidden to go to Penang Island. The Chief Minister of Penang Island is a non-Muslim and the majority of Penang Island residents are non-Muslims. When a Muslim is in Penang Island, he/she may inadvertently inhale the smell of char kuey teow that is cooked by a non-Muslim and this may destroy our faith. The best way would be for us to ban Muslims from visiting Penang Island. Muslims who are currently living there will be given relocation allowance up to MYR3,000 to assist them in moving to neighbouring states. Relocation to Kelantan and Terengganu is most encouraged.

February 2009

Muslims are forbidden from drinking root beer. Although root beers do not contain alcohol, its namesake "beer" may arouse lust and indecent behaviour among Muslims. With the ban of root beers, Muslims can drink all other soft drinks without worry. Ginger beer will also be banned.

March 2009
Muslims are forbidden to dine at mamak stalls. Although most mamak folks are Muslims, their true origin are Indians and there may be elements of Indian culture in their businesses like speaking in Tamil and wearing Indian-made clothes. To avoid any suspicion, Muslims are banned from eating at mamak stalls effective 1st March 2009 (except Tun Mahathir for he is first class mamak).

April 2009
Muslims are banned from playing ping pong or table tennis. Ping pong originates from China and because of that, may contain elements of Buddhism or Confucianism in their ping pong game. Muslims who play too much of ping pong will have their faith eroded. As an alternative solution, Muslims are encouraged to play sepak raga (however, the raga ball must be Malaysian-made, not from Thailand).

May 2009
Muslims who work with the government are banned from taking their respective salary. This is because a large portion of the government's revenue are income taxes paid by various non-Muslim companies. Muslims are encouraged to beg for alms from their fellow Muslims. To ease this process, alms hopefuls are encouraged to squat in front of the UMNO building.

June 2009
Muslims are prohibited from leaving the country. There are too many temptations that can erode the moral and faith of Muslims. This matter has been thoroughly researched as a result from the educational visit to Bangkok by the National Fatwa Council recently. Therefore, Muslims are requested to return their respective passport to the immigration department as soon as possible. Trips overseas are only possible for ministers and influential UMNO figures, provided they are escorted by members of the National Fatwa Council.

July 2009
Muslims are not allowed to think during the daytime. Most crimes and vices exist because the unemployed likes to think nonsense. To curb these crimes and vices, as of 1st July 2009, Muslims are not allowed to delve in thoughts during daytime. Their thinking freedom will be proscribed by the National Fatwa Council to a group of specially trained monkeys.

Please do not laugh. Many of the above will become a reality if we do nothing. The rational thinking Muslims in this country are simply not doing anything, or not doing enough. We let a very small minority of narrow-minded idiots control our lives. We are obssesed with the little, little things and are fast becoming a laughing stock worldwide.

When there are so many important things remain to be done, why must the Fatwa folks spend their time on little things...tomboys, yoga, etc. Why don't we ever hear anything from the Fatwa folks for social justice, eradicating corruption and poverty, protecting single mothers, helping the poor, educating the ummah, protecting the environment or ensuring fairness in society?

If you are a rational, forward-thinking Muslim, please speak up. If you choose to remain silent, it only means that you agree with whatever is happening. And do not blame the non-Muslims.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Echoes of Our Soul

People often claim themselves to be of many things. Honest, respectful, faithful, honourable, and responsible are among the many common claimed colours of a man, or a woman.
Have you ever wondered what your true colours are? It's not easy. Through the spoken words of others who looks through their own painted bifocals, the colours viewed maybe distorted.
The credence borrowed may not be completely truthful...or completely pretentious.
But there maybe a proxy to realizing this elucidation.

So, to start.

No names, I'll just state the people involved here as L, S, M, B and F.

L (female) is the girlfriend of M (male). Both were separated in an inevitable event and both were never given a chance to know of where each other were.
L misses M and to her heart's content, wishes to see M, but she doesn't know where to begin the search.
B heard of it and told L that he knows where M is and volunteers to bring her to M for a price.
However, the price is far too much for L to afford.
L then met S who soon offered to pay for the fees that B is charging in exchange for L's virginity.
L accepted the offer from S just for the sake of finding M.
F who is a friend of M heard of what happened and informed M of the truth.
Upon their meeting, the furious M broke his relationship with L.

Conclusion: L was most hurt, to lose her virginity and her boyfriend.

The question is:
Who is to blame the most and who is the least to be blamed?
If you still haven't given it a thought, please re-read before deciding and sharing your thoughts.

What is your answer?

The person whom you blamed most would reveal what you consider least important.
The person whom you blamed the least would be what you consider most important.

L - Love
S - Sex
M - Morality
B - Business
F - Friendship

You have been explicated.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Selamatkan Negaraku

A repost of one of my previous entries on how absurd our government can be at times...

Once again I was appalled and disappointed by the virulent actions of our beloved country's administrators and administration. I stumbled upon an entry written by my friend today and I took a look at the article he was talking about. I could only shook my head in vain and snarl at the inanity of our Chief Justice. I was simply stupefied and disgusted by his statements. He even had the audacity and "common sense" to say the words he said. Are all important and high-ranking positions in our Administration occupied by individuals with brains the size of peas whom they sit on their sagging bottoms and nuts the size of bowling balls? Alas, time and again I have to concur that most of the positions are occupied by these rapacious and moronic homo-sapiens.

The lawyer added that the Datuk Bandar had failed to take into consideration the fact that Malaysia was a multicultural country and that the act of hugging and kissing was an expression of love which should be encouraged.

Hearing this, Ahmad Fairuz asked: "So, they should be given freedom to live as they like? The constitution allows all citizens to do that (hugging and kissing) even by the roadside, in a public park?"

You know what I have to say to you, Most Esteemed Chief Justice Tun Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim? I think you are a sad person with a sad childhood. If what you say is true, I guess like what my friend said, we should start arresting all those people, loved ones, husbands and wives and families who kisses and hugs each other in the airport terminal, train stations or ports. In fact, why don't we start arresting all the politicians and great leaders of our country who hugs one another after a great meeting or conference? In fact, I will champion the cause of my friend to ban all television shows, movies, ads and live plays that constitutes a man and a woman hhugging or kissing each other? That way, there will be no influences on the young minds of our nation's children and thus, no cause for you to issue idiotic and bullish statements like the ones you just made.

This is just totally absurd. I have seen countless times that our Administration has a penchant for making small things big and big issues small. While the country is plagued with rapes, kidnappings, murder, incest, money-laundering, bribery, social irresponsibility and the likes, issues like kissing and hugging in public and gambling with friends and relatives during a festive season are hyped up and brought to light in the public's eye. How often do we hear that each reported cases of rapes, kidnappings, murder, bribery or social irresponsibility are solved with the perpetrator in costody? Rare indeed. With all the resources and manpower at their disposal, this is the best they come up with. No wonder more and more capable individuals are migrating out of our decrepifying country. Who's to blame them? While the real perps are out there roaming around to prey on new victims, the innocent are being persecuted.

These are just small crimes! If it can even be called a crime to kiss and hug in public. Grow up please, Administration. Stop being so childish. Aim for the big guns and do your job right. Then maybe for once, we can start respecting one another genuinely.

Personally, I think both the Datuk Bandar and the Chief Justice had a terrible teen life. I think they're just jealous of the couple whom they're prosecuting. C'mon people, how ridiculous you think it'll look on the Australian Times, New York Daily or The Star? YOUNG ADULTS BROUGHT TO COURT FOR KISSING AND HUGGING IN PUBLIC.

Friday, November 14, 2008

A Narrative Nonsense

A test run of my writing skill...

William and Sanders stood in the darkened foyer of the church. William fumbled with his keys as he locked the front entrance. He looked up verily and said, "You know what, I bet I'm the only children's pastor in the world with a concealed weapons permit, hah!". William pantomimed drawing a pistol from his pocket and fired off two imaginary shots at some unseen perpetrator.

"Uh, hello, you moron!" said Sanders. "You're probably the ONLY pastor in the worldwith a gun permit."

William holstered his pantomime pistol. "Yeah, you're probably right, but it never hurts to be prepared."

Sanders snorted. "Prepared? Prepared for what? Why in the world does a children's pastor needs a gun in the first place? Are you crazy?"

"You know," William reasoned. "In case there's a zombie outbreak or something."

"Oh, my Lord!" Sanders threw up his hands. "You and zombies. There's never been a stupid zombie outbreak to begin with."

William stared at his friend. "That's right. I stopped the first one before it could escalate."

"I don't even want to know."

"And neither does the government," said William. "You should be thankful to have a friend like me."

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Let It Snow

A repost from a time which will always remain close to my heart...

Truth happens when the best of us are caught off-guard by an innocent question. In a day filled with happenings and interesting incidents, I have made tremendous progress in my observation department.

It is no wonder that even the best or the nicest of us can succumb to the simplest of task. Some people may take a task as a task is; while others go to extreme extent just to prove a single point. When all reason is lost and what lies beneath the mask of enthusiasm and commitment are anything but a just cause, the reason that being in the beginning was misplaced. I have had my shares of responsibilities and commitments and creativity and excitement in my old glory days of high school. To think that the stuffs that made all these non-academic activities in university level was those you'd call "stuffs of legend", from a certain point of view, was anything but a deception carefully and consisely conceived by ourselves and those people whom we observe from afar.

In any case, favouritism was in abundance today which spawned several hooligans who in turn tried to make fools and morons out of us. Politics are not for the faint-hearted, but neither is professionalism. The difference between then and now, as I see it, is that when you served then, you were serving the school and the subtle indoctrination that every clubs, societies or student bodies give to its members. Serving now means a totally new level for everyone. It has so many meanings and yet in the end it means nothing. But one example I can readily see is that serving today means serving yourself to achieve whatever means necessary to further one's ends. The best part of this is, this is how the REAL WORLD works.

Gone are the days of chivalry, honour, and self-righteous. The numerous metropolitan-styled universities or institutes of higher learning that plague our world have become the breeding ground of selfishness, self-centeredness and twisted values. You may disagree with me in this on many grounds but I am sure you and I would both agree on the fact that innocence is a thing of the past. One may practice it while the other may just be aware of it but both are now players in the never-ending limbo of the manipulator and the person being used.

Anyhow, I was really entertained to the core of my bone today but shall not disclose any further which event or who set me off.

On a lighter note, the night was filled with another long chain of more interesting events. Think of Central Perk; multiply the number of people by 2; divide the enthusiastic minds by 2; minus off the no-shame attitude and plus the over-zealous heads and finally square it by sets of bombastic and exaggerative sentences, you get a center for perky people. Sometimes, you just got to know when you're telling the truth and when you're just making up a story so that you seem "cooler" or seem to know all. Say it the first time, it's a really good joke and worth scores of laughter by everyone. Say it the second time and it's still a reasonably decent joke but eyebrows are raised. Say it three times and more, you start to sound like a dork that is in dire need of constant attention. Ah, but anyhow life is too short. Live and let live.

The next thing I knew it, 2 minutes later I was in fact laughing in my heart about all this. Soon after that, the atmosphere just became literally and figuratively STALE. Imagine a convention filled with ardent Star Wars fans and a legion of Green-peace supporters. Boths sides fooled into attending the meeting and are forced to mingle. I'd kill to see that day happens. However, I still can't help myself from being totally and satisfactorily entertained the whole night. From every single axes that I could pan to, I see linear humility intersecting curves of over-confidence. I was stupefied! I have to give it to them all because it was such a gathering of different minds and backgrounds and upbringing and approach or view to life.

Frankly, I have nothing but admiration and respect and adoration for all of the things that have taken place today and to the people that made it possible. This was the kind of exposure I was expecting when I decided to transfer here.

Happy Independence Day, Malaysia

A repost from a time when I still believed...

31st August of 1957. A truly meaningful day. Although I was absent during the official declaration of Malaysia's independence by Allayarhum Tunku Abdul Rahman (please correct me if I addressed his most imminence wrongly), I still feel blessed and fortunate. Every single bliss and joy we taste today is owed to that very fateful day. In this entry, I am going to state why am I so lucky to be a proud citizen of my country.

I am grateful to be a Malaysian because:
  • Every race lives in harmony. This is the only multi-racial country that has no racial segregation/civil unrest (except the tragic May 13th incident).
  • Centre to the best food on Earth. Char kuey teow, roti canai, laksa penang, nasi kandar, lontong, bah kut teh, nasi dagang, cendol, ais kacang, vade, tosay, teh tarik. Where else can you get all this, eh?
  • The political issues and differences are not that serious. Even the government today is quite fair, no obvious political instability. Our country is considered pretty good compared to those that uses force and tyranny in extraditing away other races.
  • The weather is great! It is not cold that you have to wear 3-4 layers of clothings or 7 layers in some places. Just a t-shirt can take you places. The only downside is the haze problem (thanks to Indonesia, no offence) which is only once a year, so it is not that bad. On the bright side, we have no major disasters like typhoon, or earthquakes.
  • "Oi boss! Teh tarik satu. Roti telur tak mau bawang!". Mamak. So easy to get food. Anytime of any day. 7pm? 2am? They even have 24hrs now!
  • Going to the theatre is so cheap. If you ain't no like the cinemas, there's always "Uncle Ho". For 10 ringgit, you get 2. Sometimes, it's even faster than the cinemas ;)
  • Subsidised petrol. Although it is unknown how much longer this will go on.

Despite all these, there are still some areas that can be improved:

  • Education. Many aspects to improve. What is the point of Moral Education? As if memorising the divine nilai-nilai murni can make a student kind, compassionate, etc.
  • When will we come out with a car that is world-class or internationally accepted? At least make one that has its door lasting for at least 6 months.
  • TM Net Strymyx. Self-explanatory.
  • A political reshuffle. At least make sure the ministers are able to do their jobs properly and effectively. Or else we're going to have more bridges falling down.
  • The congestion in the Klang Valley. Public transportation has room for a lot of improvement and innovation. A good industry to get into in the future.

Although my country is not perfect and has its own shares of flaws, this is still the tanah tumpahnya darahku. There is no place as interesting as home, as beautiful as home, as special like home...and there's simply no place like Home. Happy Independence Day!

(p/s: this entry is dedicated to the Malaysians who have forgotten their own state songs like Lagu Selangor and EVEN our national anthem, who doesn't know what it means to be...MALAYSIAN).

Prayer for the Stressed

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The courage to change the things I cannot accept,
And the wisdom to hide the bodies of those people
I had to kill today because they pissed me off.
Also help me to be careful of the toes I stepped on today,
As they may be connected to the ass that I
might have to kiss tomorrow.
Help me to always give 100% at work:
12% on Monday, and 23% on Tuesday,
40% on Wednesday and 20% on Thursday
and 5% on Friday.
Help me to remember that when I'm having a really
bad day and it seems that people are trying to piss me off,
That it takes 42 muscles to frown,
And only 4 to extend my middle finger
and tell them to BITE ME!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Reds Rules

Another repost of one of my more memorable sports review...

If anything bad were to befallen me today, I'd leave this world knowing that I've witnessed THE MOTHER OF ALL CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL MATCH today.

That's the statement I'd use to justify the intensity, suspense, excitement, superb, best of the best, excellent, great, entertaining, fun, trepidation, passion, exhilaration, outstanding, terrific, marvelous, and first-rate of the match between Liverpool and AC Milan. All these words I just mentioned don't give the least credit to the game I've just watched.

After 20 years of waiting, Liverpool finally got their grasp on the European Champion's Cup once again. As the most highliy decorated English club in the competition and one of the best achievers in the competition of Europe, it is only fitting that Liverpool took home their rightful cup tonight by just being present in the Finals.

The match started off one-sidedly with Milan owning Liverpool in practically every aspect of football; from through passes to long passes to attempts on goals to techniques used to defensive quality and dexterity. Arguably one of the earliest and best goal to be scored in a Champions League final was netted by the Captain of AC Milan; Paulo Maldini. Just 30 seconds into the first half, Liverpool conceded a free-kick at the right edge of the penalty box, opening its defenses up for a surgical strike. With a minute coming up, the kick was swung in and with the Midas one-touch volley from Maldini, the ball struck the ground once and went straight into the back of the net with such force that everyone in the room roared as if they were struck down by the ball itself. Such was the intensity and quality of the first goal.

AC Milan went on to show Liverpool, the underdogs, how the BIG BOYS played in this competition. AC Milan was so good and mesmerizing to the extent of emulating Arsenal in their trademark quick, short-pass counterattacks. 10 minutes from half-time, Hernando Crespo (former Chelsea striker) received a cross from the right wing after puncturing Liverpool's defenses at its heart and tapped the ball into the goal, leaving poor Jerzy Dudek to lick his own injured pride. Just when we thought the first half was ending at a 2-0 score line, a mistake by Sammi Hyppia to intercept an oncoming ball from mid-air set Crespo loose once again to hound Liverpool's crumbling defenses. With only the goalkeeper between him and his 2nd goal, Crespo neatly and skillfully chipped in AC Milan's 3rd goal, practically securing the Champion's Cup for his team's taking. 3-0 was the half-time score.

At this point, one would think the end is over for Liverpool and they rightly deserved it. Shame on those who went to sleep during half-time for they missed the greatest match that has ever been live-telecasted for a very, very long time. Liverpool came back into the second half with kilojoules of vigour to spare. And spared them they did. Captain Steven Gerard whom I so humbly admire, gave his team a winning chance when he head in a superb, sharp ball into the top right corner of the goal, leaving helpless Dida on the groound. Now, Liverpool brought it on to AC Milan's ground matching speed for speed and passes for passes. 2 minutes later, Vladimir Smicer bulls-eyed in an excellent and perfect goal outside the penalty box. It was approximately 35 yards from my memory and it was a very low ball, straight into the left bottom corner of the goal. Again, Dida was helpless to deflect it. With nothing to lose, Xabi Alonso took the spot kick. I told James he was going to miss because I could read his expression. I have a knack for this sort of thing ;) He did miss but he also quickly compensate for his blunder by capitalizing on Dida's error of not catching the ball. As you guessed it, he rebounded the saved spot-kick and brought Liverpool to AN EYE FOR AN EYE with AC Milan.

The game went on at 3-3 until the end of regulation time. After several more misses and nerve-wrecking moments in extra-time, the Finals was to be decided on a penalty fall-out, notice the term here. Liverpool won the fall-out 3-2 with Milan blundering 3 of their penalty kicks (where Dudek saved 2 of those) despite Dida saving Liverpool's John Arne Riiser's kick. It was that bad for Milan and that obvious for Liverpool that Captain Gerard didn't even have to take this penalty as the 5th taker. It was inevitable, it was memorable, and it was self-justified. Liverpool showed CHARACTER and they deserved to win.

Althought I'm not a Liverpool fan, I have to admit I was with them even from the beginning of the match when they seemed hopeless. After all, I was a one-time Reds fan a long time ago in a galaxy, far, far away...wait, that didn't sound right :P Anyway, because of this, I couldn't help but vouched for Liverpool even when they were 3-0 down. C'mon, anyone who's been following the Championship should know that there's something about this Liverpool team. Defeating 3 great and powerful teams in a row to clinch the title of Champion of Champions in Europe is not an every-season feat; Juventus, Chelsea and AC Milan, two being the league champions in their respective country.

With this new-found sense of confidence in the Liverpool camp, I am now looking forward to their meet with Manchester United next season. I would relish on the thought of MU defeating the current Champion of Europe.

For now...

A toast to Liverpool, to a great game long to be remembered, and to football...

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Movie Review: Revenge of the Sith


The following entry has a major Star Wars Episode III spoiler. Proceed no further if you have yet to see this movie.

I've never felt more constrained and held-back after watching a movie of this magnitude and epical proportion than watching Revenge of the Sith tonight. Being surrounded with somewhat 'lesser-fan(s)' or viewers who had no idea what was going on certainly did not help to elevate my quiet mood. Hopefully, this entry will help me get IT out of my system.

There is no better way to explain all the events that transpired in the classical Starwars Trilogy than the episode I watched tonight. People have always said Anakin's portrayal in Episodes I and II lacked substance and the movies itself lacked a good plot or excellent character development. I say "be patient" as the stories itself were meant to unfold in Episode III. If you'd expected to see everything explained and shown for in I and II then there's no point in making III, IV, V and VI subsequently, no? Bigger is the pity to all who failed to see the bigger picture and title that is STARWARS in plain sight itself.

This movie tonight is by far the saddest I've watched in a long time. Not because by itself, this movie is a sad and touchy one. But because an avid fan myself who knows Starwars well, I feel for the loss of the characters in the movie, I feel for the sadness they feel, I wished for something good to happen in order to ease their suffering and now I know why Episode IV was named A NEW HOPE. Indeed, George kept his promise to all who knows Starwars like I do because afterall, he made the prequel trilogy for US.

The turning point of Anakin's road down to damnation started when he sliced off Windu's right hand and presented Lord Sidious with a window of opportunity to strike him down and threw him off the building. Hence, the 2nd highest ranking Jedi Master of the Council was overthrown. It's also clear now how Sidious/Palpatine's disfigurement occured. Now, we all know how confused and misguided Anakin was when he thought killing Dooku when both of his hands were sliced off with him kneeling for mercy before Anakin was right but preventing Windu from striking down Sidious and quoting to abidfe by the Jedi Code on Windu made him a better Jedi.

Anakin did kill Padme as was told to him by Sidious fron a certain point of view. If he hadn't fall so far from grace, Padme wouldn't have given up on him or her life, for that matter, and would have gone on to live. This proves Yoda's wisdom on the quote always in motion is the future, hard to see it is.

The 3rd saddes part of the movie was when Anakin inadvertently killed Windu and submitted to Sidious for apprenticeship. At least, from a viewer's point of view, I know he did not choose to leave the Jedi path but was forced into leaving it. He left it by enforcing his beliefs in the Jedi Code, trying to prove to Master Windu of his repented ways only to enforce it in a very, very bad time.

The 2nd saddest part of the movie occured when Palpatine declared that "the Jedis are now enemies of the Republic" and executed Order 66 among the clone troopers throughout the galaxy. Order 66 was an encryption command tutored into each clones in its infancy and training stages to terminate all Jedis upon sight. In the movie, you start to see all the great Jedi Masters and Knights got stabbed in the back like some paltry animals, one by one. Ki-Adi-Mundi, Saesse Tinn, and Plo Koon were among the many purged. The sickest part was when Anakin walked into a training room full of younglings or Jedi apprentices. One of them comes up to him asking him what's to be done when the Temple was being overrun. Being Darth Vader, he slaughtered these children.

And the saddest part of the movie was when Anakin's legs and hands were cut off by Obi-Wan in a spectacular final fall-out between the two legendary swordsmen. Even when decapitated and consumed with fire from the lava, he could still summon enough energy and anger in him to scream I HATE YOU at Obi-Wan. Don't think for a second that Obi-Wan was anything but glad at what he did to Anakin. He was afterall, like a brother to him and he, like a father to Anakin. The transformation of decay of Anakin's body was well-defined and excellent to the finest details.

Ultimately, it's the ending mood of the movie which captivates me the most. I can almost swear I felt the emotions of Bail Organa, Yoda and Obi-Wan flowed through the widescreen. The helplessness state they were in. The feeling of failure and guilt, of loss and betrayal, of fear and suffering. Padme died in the way I never imagined she could have. Her last words were so unsettling and unfulfilling for a woman of her stature, calibre, dignity and respect. I know there is still good in him, but still... And Luke and Leia never saw their beloved mother ever again. Now I understand why Leia's memory of Padme was always a sad one where she seemed sad, distant...she was always crying.

Among the many good stuffs from this final installment is I get to see Kashyyyk and Alderaan, know Yoda is stronger than any of the Siths including Anakin (I think), know how the Jedis were so quickly and systematically wiped out, know how Vader got his name and how Anakin's body was shattered, know how C3-P0 and R2-D2 came into the hands of Captain Antilles aboard te Tantive IV, got to see the moment the Galactic Empire was formed, Luke came first before Leia, Padme's dying words, how Obi-Wan managed to gain immortality to be at Luke's side during later years after his own death, how a younger Grand Moff Tarkin looked like, how X-Wings came about, how TIE Fighters came about, and how the twins were seperated and the important figures behind the plan.

All in all, I dare say that this is one movie I dare not watch again because of the emotional theatrics it plays on me, over and over again, hours after the movie ended. I may not dare to pass up a chance to watch it again either.


Being happy is not living with the absence of sufferings and troubles. Rather the happiness we must seek is the joy by overcoming sufferings.

Heaven's Eyes

I never thought you were a fair-weathered friend, you never let me down, you're true to the end,

For in the darkest hour, when all was lost, somehow you left the light on,

You faced the wrong and showed the world a thing or two, stood up for me, for you,

I still remember the things that you said, I keep your words alive, I could never forget,

For in the final hour you made me proud, so proud that I could know you,

You told the world it's time that they believe in you, you stood for Right and Truth,

And so we can't forget, we've got to keep remembering them all,

The ones who took the fall, they did it for us all,

And we should learn from it, stand up if you believe in it,

You've got to face the world, be strong,

And you should know, some say it wasn't worth the things we went through,

I say it ain't worth losing you, I hope you know how much you've changed all our lives,

Someday, you'll see,

If only through Heaven's Eyes...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Another edited repost from my previous blog...I guess this is something I'd like to carry forward in my life wherever I go. I realized the following during one of the most memorable outing with 3 of my closest friends a very long time ago before we all embarked on our own separate journeys in life...

You can never truly know a person till you see him in the presence of his closest and oldest friends.

Later as I was sending them home, I felt somewhat lost for words. Some feelings of abandonment was in me. I know it's silly. I dropped Mah first, then YH and finally JC. I wished I was Mah. It's always easier to leave the car first than to watch everyone else leave before you. That way, you don't have to deal with the after-feelings. It's even worse when you're that person driving.

Just like my life; 2 years ago, I was supposed to be the 1st among my close friends to go to Australia. I didn't. Fast-forward to present, I'm going to be the last to leave Klang. I have to face the after-feelings now. I have to be the more determined one now. HC's making an impact in his life, making himself known throughout his social circle. He's good at what he does and is hoping to make his mark in New York. Gan's in UK pursuing an engineering degree too. JC's pursuing a doctorate degree in Ukraine, an endeavour I very much respect. Mah's an accomplished person, having loads of experience in the real world and under scholarship. YH's very dedicated to his work and is aiming to become an architect. If you've seen his works, you'd be impressed. I am.

For me, I have yet to carve out the path of my destiny. The next big thing for me is industrial training. The choice of company is vital as it will determine where I'll be in the next 3 years. Before that, I have to ensure I make it to Melbourne, where it will be my proving ground. Prior to that, I have to do well for my exams.

I hope the best for JC...and the rest. It's strange that now, I really, really want to go to Australia.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Thursdays with Morris

The following is another repost (parts only) from my previous blog that I'd like to continue sharing. I feel the meaning is too lasting to me to simply just ignore. It's actually a piece of my thoughts on relationship - how the boy and the girl should treat each other...

The boy and girl should treat each other like precious gold. Sometimes, the boy should have the initiative to bring the girl to do something that he likes a lot, the girl should follow willingly and happily, no matter how stupid, absurd, silly or ridiculous it seems. The same goes for the other way too. It's ok if sometimes the boy has to give in to her, even if it means his pride and ego, especially in the face of his friends. After all, she is the love of your life, it ain't worth keeping your pride and ego. This applies to girls too, not just one-sided. Be sensitive too! Be able to tell what is not an effort and what IS when your loved one does something for you. If you missed out on the effort, you might disappoint him/her and make your partner feel unappreciated. This is very true, things tend to get taken for granted too easily. I guess these were what I said to TS and Char.

...just something I shared with two friends a long time ago. It's strange reading these words that I actually said in the past. It's like looking at the reflection of my former-self. It raised several profound questions like am I still the same? Was I that different compared with myself now? No one can truly answer this for me, I guess. The answer will definitely elude me always. I guess the best way...and the only way is how the closest people who mean something to me, actually see me.

If Ever...

"If ever things begin to look a little cloudy...

they'll get better soon.

Just remember that it's true:

it takes rain to make rainbows,

lemons to make lemonade,

and sometimes it takes difficulties

to make us stronger and better people.

The sun will shine again'll see."


What would you do when someone outright praises you to be the type of man that most girls would want? How do you react at the point in time when all equations, variables and unknowns converge on the nexus of uncertainty? The tipping point that leads to the collapse of a belief...chaos breeds order and order breeds chaos...the only future peace has to offer is war...the small wing flutter of a butterfly can cause a wave of typhoon halfway across the world...Chaos theories for the feeble-minded.

I accepted it. Was very flattered but don't know what to think. Is the comment genuine or another ploy, part of the endless mindgames being played in the never-ending cycle of counter-thoughts?


I'll never forget those sentences, those words, those made my night.


There are two ways of spreading light, to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it. Know which one you are at the end of each day of your life.

Perceptions (classic) - repost from 28/8/04

How well does a person actually knows himself? Do you really know how good you are, nice or kind? Or you just know you are? Today, I realized that you can't possibly know what kind of person you are until someone comes up to you and tell you just that. I mean, you can't just assume what you do sometimes is what people see as nice and goodly, rite?

That's how I felt today during a certain time of the day. It's nothing serious, it was just a realization of ignorance. I found out that when someone appreciates a certain trait of another, they don't just go up to the person and say it. They'll probably go to a third party and say something like "oh, he's so kind and all...she's just such a pure hearted person". And we'll just nod away in agreement.

In a similar matter, I had to listen to a short string of praises from someone close about her friend. It dawned on me that I did certain things in the past to deserve such compliments too but why I didn't? Well, hehehe...the answer is simple, you won't just hear a compliment about yourself as easily as you might with a bad gossip. The moral of the story: what goes around doesn't necessarily comes around.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Hourglass of Denial

There are always different ways a person stands still in time, frozen by his inactivity. Yesterday night was no different and when it happened, you just feel like the world has stopped for you, giving pause so that you can catch up with it and lay a finger of realization on your mind...calm...peace...serenity...and there it is:

1) Speak more often with the eagle and the bear
2) Show more appreciation for the significance of a butterfly's wing flutter
3) Never take the starlight for granted

As time flows by the never ending sands of sins, one will learn to see through the obscurity of truth and know that it is futile to be in denial.

The time I want to waste is just not time wasted at all.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Saving the President

This test only has one question, but it's a very important one. By giving an honest answer, you will discover where you stand morally.

The test features an unlikely, completely fictional situation in which you will have to make a decision.

Remember that your answer needs to be honest, yet spontaneous.

You are in Florida, Miami to be specific. There is chaos all around you caused by a hurricane with severe flooding. This is a flood of biblical proportions. You are a photojournalist working for a major newspaper, and you're caught in the middle of this epic disaster. The situation is nearly hopeless. You're trying to shoot career-making photos.

There are houses and people swirling around you, some disappearing under the water. Nature is unleashing all of its destructive fury.

Suddenly you see a man floundering in the water. He is fighting for his life, trying not to be taken down with the debris. You move closer...somehow the man looks familiar. You suddenly realize who it is. It's George W. Bush! At the same time you notice that the raging waters are about to pull him under.

You have two options--you can save the life of G.W. Bush or you can shoot a dramatic Pulitzer Prize winning photo, documenting the death of one of the world's most powerful man.

So here's the question, and please give an honest answer:

Would you select high contrast colour film, or would you go with the classic simplicity of black and white?