Di Bawoh Rang Ikang Kering
Random Ramblings of A Retired Retainer


Tuesday, May 29, 2007

This smudgy scan is of STARTWO's BOOK article in today's STAR. Could not find the online version. I did however learnt a new word: blook. Blook is what you call a book made out of blog postings. Regular books have the Booker Prize, blooks have the Lulu Blooker Prize.

Apparently there are enough people who likes to curl up with a good blook. The success of Girl With A One Track Mind and PostSecret (you have to google for the respective blog) made publishers (through their editors) trawl the net for blogs worthy of publications as blooks. Now, that is something for politicians-who hate-blogs to think about. It made me smile. You read a book and then you see the movie. Most probably you will see a posting about the movie or the book. Now you might read the blog, then buy the blook and if things are phenomenal enough, you will see the movie.

One thing I am sure of, my blog will not be a blook. With the price of roti canai and milo-ais going up, people will not buy expensive toilet paper.

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Thursday, May 24, 2007
Yesterday I received an email inviting me to list my blog as part of the AllMalaysian Bloggers Project. I promised the sender I will blog about it and asked for some additional info. I could not wait for the response and decided to go ahead with this post.

Basically the project is about listing all the blogs in Malaysia (or blogs with a Malaysian slant) under various categories. So if you blog about the wisdom of our ministers or the wisdom of wearing underwear or even minsters not wearing underwear, you can submit your blog. Nothing new about this. We have blog aggregators before and some are still around like Project Petaling Street and the SOPO Directory. I was on the SOPO list for a while. I wondered why. I am not Socio-Political. Maybe I am a sociopath. The AllMalaysian Bloggers Project will be more than a blog aggregator though. It has a contest for bloggers as well as for blog readers. With many sponsors available, it also promises to hold gatherings and workshops for bloggers. Hmmm, All-Blog promises to do these too (without sponsors yet), don't they?

Anonymous bloggers are warned that you cannot remain anonymous when submitting your blog for listing although you are assured of your anonymity as far as the reader is concerned. The mail I received promised not to let any ministers peek at the database which includes your personal particulars such IC number, address and phone number.

The project is under I-Star and you must join MStar Online to participate. Only a nickname, password and a valid email is required to join MStar Online.

Should you join? As my friend Daud would say "Clap chest, ask appetite."

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Old RTM friends (the accent is here is on old- both on the length of friendship and our age) met again for breakfast this morning. We chose Mahbub thinking that we could get the airconditioned room. They did not want to open the room until 10.30 am so we had to have our breakfast outside.We had more friends joining us for the first time this time around like Dato' HJ. Mokhtar Kadir, Ustaz Hj.Noori Ali and Hj. Aziz Abas.
Zabri Adil, Hj. Ayub and Dato' Abdullah honored us with their presence. Hj Ismail Mat who joined last month could not bring other friends from Kg. Pandan. He promised to try harder.
Hj. Safian Ghani came all the way from Shah Alam.
Hj.Helan, the Persatuan Veteran RTM President thinking how cumbersome it would be to have this kind of gathering for the national association. Better to have it informal eh?
Chin Then Shoong made it for "teh tarik" after we have moved to the more private room.
Prayers were offered for friends recently departed.

Surprisingly, the recent pay rise was not the hot topic of conversation. Maybe because we pensioners will only get an extra 7.5%. Syukur Alhamdullillah nonetheless. But I still have to look for more work. More so because the next breakfast will be at Marakecch (The restaurant in Bangsar, not the city). The bulk of the pot collected so far went to pay for today's breakfast. Last month we paid only RM15 for the whole group(8 people, 1 did not eat). Today (16 people, 1 did not eat) we paid 10 times more. Everyone agreed it was worth every sen.

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Sunday, May 20, 2007

I had a great time. I met many famous bloggers. Too bad I could not stay longer. I don't drink and I am an Arsenal fan. Furthermore I took a lift from Pak Idrus and he wanted to get home before the tunnel gets flooded.Nah, we are old fogeys, we need to get home and take our medicines.

Congrats to Desi and the Committee for the hard work. I could not get more pics up since it is very late and the broadband is behaving like dialup. My flash batteries died on me too.

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Saturday, May 19, 2007
InsyaAllah, Pak Idrus and I will be joining other bloggers for this get-together:
If you haven't made your payment (RM30) you can take a chance and be there with the payment by 5.30 pm. I cannot guarantee that you will be admitted though.

As I was rueing my bad hair day today, I came across this.
Let us hope and pray that Malaysia will never be on the list. This will be a good topic for conversation tonight. See you there!

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Wednesday, May 16, 2007
Today's STAR carried a full page advert from the Malaysian Cabinet ministers thanking teachers on this year's Hari Guru. Although laudable, teachers who are perfectionists would complain that the ad should not carry the signatures of people who are not in the cabinet, however hopeful they are. Otherwise, do not label the ad as "Ikhlas Dari Menteri Kabinet".

Nitpicker that I am, I am grateful to all those that taught me. Most of them would not have the tools that can be exhibited in the recently mooted Teachers Archive/Museum/whatever. Schools that I went to in my younger days did not have Audio/Visual aids like my children's and grandchildren's schools. I remember when I was in Sekolah Melayu Paya Bunga, Kuala Terengganu the most hated tool used was the fist of one Cikgu Lebo. His fist landed on the back of many aspiring artists and writers whose only transgression was drawing or writing in the sands in the school ground. You cannot put that fist or its owner in the museum. You can however trace a piece of 2 by 4 timber carried by an old teacher in the Grammar School decades ago. Knowing the mentality of the students in that particular school then, I am quite sure that the piece of wood was solely for self-defense. I remembered the teacher also carried a copy of the Surah Yasin in his shirt-pocket as an added protection. This was a school where a few pupils asked me ( a temporary teacher) for a light for their cigarette.

I remember Mr. Lau Kuan Jin who always zero in on me during English classes in SMC 1 years ago in the "kajang" school. Sultan Sulaiman Primary School caught fire and needed to be built in a hurry. Petroleum was yet to be discovered so the state used "kajang" (pandanus leaf) as walls.
When we moved to the secondary school by the South China Sea, we had teachers just a little older than us. Thus I had the opportunity to attend a course at the same institution in Sydney as Mr. Razalli Mutallib, my P.E. Teacher. I will be collaborating with another of our young teacher, Cikgu Ibrahim Sihi on a project soon, insyaAllah. Even though I could not write down all of my teachers name ( like the roof of our august Parliament house, my memory leaks too and I apologize sincerely) I do appreciate what they all did. To those who have passed on, May They Rest in Peace and Allah swt bless them. Thank you cikgu!

While waiting patiently for Blogspot to load, I received an SMS from Mat Baee, a good friend and pensioned teacher. He wrote for the occasion:
Berburu ke padang datar
Dapat rusa berbelang kaki
Berguru kepalang ajar
Ibarat bunga kembang tak jadi...

to which I replied

Bersyukurlah kerana tak ada murid kita yang kencing berlari....

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Sunday, May 13, 2007
In spite of the crass commercialization, I wish all mothers a very pleasant and meaningful Mother's Day.
Even without P.Ramlee's "Ibu" or Whistler's famous painting, we love and revere our mother. A child whose face takes after his/her mother is believed to be successful in life as well as "sejuk", whatever that implies.
We trust our mother explicitly. We just know that our mother will take care of us. We never questioned what our mother gave us to drink, even if we could. How many mothers do you know give battery water to their babies? Mothers will always mother their children even after their children had children of their own. I am sure your own experience will attest to this.
Good manners and other important stuffs are learned at the mother's knee while all the unsavoury things are acquired at other joints. In light of the recent sexist remarks in Parliament, I am wondering whether some of our Yang Berhormat learned anything from their mother or if they had one in the first place.



Tuesday, May 08, 2007
(Would you like to read Part One first?)

On Saturday we were taken to Manukan Island.Not many people swam or snorkelled. A group played football instead with local visitors which quickly brought this snorkeller out of the water. The slippers served as the goal posts.

If you have RM180 you can rent the mini submarine and explore the corals even though you do not have diving experience. Non-Malaysians have to pay more (just like our taxis.):

Members of the rombongan sat or stood for a group pic after lunch on the beach:
End of the day. KK has sunsets (and sunrises) earlier than KL.:

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My apologies to people with slow connection.
Last Friday I was invited on a trip to Kota Kinabalu originally for a meeting. I have been to KK numerous times before but I discovered new things on every trip. This is the first time that I see a square island. At 35,000 feet, I could not find out the name of the island:
We left KL very early to catch the 7.30 am flight to KK and some friends who did not have proper breakfast wanted their morning tea before lunch so the bus took us to a restaurant in Sembulan where I found this lempar (rhymes with gempar). It looks like our pulut udang or pulut lepa but instead of udang or fish, the glutinous rice roll has beef serondeng inside. It is delicious and filling. It costs 70 sen each. I was told that it originated in Ceribon Indonesia.
We attended the Friday prayers at Mesjid Negeri, KK. The mosque is very creative. Those not in the main hall can follow the khutbah (sermon) on the screen provided. The other mosque, Mesjid Bandaran in Likas uses the sea surrounding the mosque to rear fish. Makes you want to exclaim "Holy Mackerel!"
We had lunch at the posh Magellan Sutera Harbour. It was a scrumptious multicourse Chinese lunch. Some people, not used to Chinese courses complained that the rice was served too late. So the ever-accommodating hosts made sure there were pots of rice when we had dinner at the seafood center next to our hotel. We had prawns, shellfish, crabs, sea snails, fish and Sabah veggie. We did not have indigestion.
I had mental indigestion when I saw this signboard back at our hotel:

(More here)

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Thursday, May 03, 2007
(Story in Cik Na's blog)

The Birthday Boy

Seeking refuge under a convenient table

Refusing to blow his birthday candles

But recovered enough to join the Pinata Pull

Collecting candy with the help of a loving aunt

Younger brother Akiff had more serious business to attend to.

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