Monday, 21 September 2009

Please forgive me* - Bryan Adams

Selamat Hari Raya

One thing which distinguishes this celebration from other religious festivals is the wishing of "Maaf zahir dan batin".

Picture taken without permission from Sky Is The Limit. Please forgive me.

It basically means "Please forgive me my emotional and physical wrongdoings". Forgiveness is a very important thing is any relationships. And to have a day when people go up to each other asking for forgiveness - and the actual granting of such - is something IMHO very important! Relationships are strengthened and in some cases, healed.

Altho many take this to be a day of celebration, it is not about the making merry. Well, not
just about making merry!

If you have actually experienced true forgiveness from anyone, you can testify how wonderful it feels, and how therapeutic it can be. Try it! :-) Even if you do not normally celebrate Hari Raya and even if u're not Muslim, take time to ask for forgiveness from yr family members and yr frens.

The Bible says that freely received, freely give. For those who have freely received forgiveness, they will find it easy to oso forgive those who have wronged them. so asking for forgiveness doesn't just stop there. It is a catalyst for more forgiveness!

What a wonderful world we live in, where people experience forgiveness and grants the same freely!

Think this would be a good moment to publicly ask for forgiveness from all of you out there - from my family, my frens, my students, my colleagues, my fellow church members etc. And from God too whom i know will forgive graciously!

*One of the songs that brings back memories of the autumn of 1993 when we first landed in London and this was one of the songs which was played daily!

Sunday, 20 September 2009

I need you* - LeAnn Rimes

Psalms 127 v 1

Unless the LORD builds the house,
its builders labor in vain.
Unless the LORD watches over the city,
the watchmen stand guard in vain.

We need the Lord!!!!

*The title song of her 6th album of the same name.

Friday, 18 September 2009

King of wishful thinking* - Go West

So we were introducing ourselves during the very first Christmas 2009 choir practice.

T: My name is 'Handsome'
T's brother: Our parents were hopeful when they named him!!!
Everyone else: LOL!

*One of their bigger hits featured on the soundtrack of Pretty Woman.

Obsessed* - Mariah Carey

I've been amused by the news stories about Andy Lau in the local papers lately - especially in The Star!!!! Almost on a daily basis, stories about Andy Lau would be the no. 1 on the Star Online most read stories of the day!

Why are the papers - and the readers - so obsessed with him???

So he got married! So he married a local Malaysian. So she's pregnant.

Surely there are other more newsworthy stories to print!!!!! Are there not?

*Her new single from her latest album.

Saturday, 12 September 2009

Memory* - Elaine Paige

Wow. This trip to the east coast evoked many many old memories!!!!

I met up with a fren at Temerloh and we had a nice chat. I realised too that i cannot recognise Temerloh anymore. So sad. The memories of traveling to Temerloh came back. :-)

I'm at Kota Bharu now. So the memories of coming here for court cases too return! And of course, the RBS mission trip here years ago!

I'm staying on the 15th floor now and the memories of living above the 10th floor came back too.

Yesterday was 9/11. People say that on specific days of historical significance, everyone remembers where they were and wat they were doing when they found out. I still remember the day when i found out that Princess Diana was killed. And i can still clearly remember the 9th September 2001. I just came back from a RBS Committee Meeting. I turned on the TV and was immediately greeted with the words "America Under Attack" and the scenes of the twin towers collapsing! Everyone else was asleep and i was so so aggitated! This was not something to watch alone! I actually went to my parents' room and woke up my dad. He wasn't too pleased and he prolly din know wat i was talking about!!!!

As i listened to the radio, i was informed that it was on 9th September 1998 that the Commonwealth Games opened at Malaysia! That too brought back so many wonderful memories!

I have also signed up for the Nike+ Human Race during this trip too!

This trip has had its ups and downs. More downs than ups? But it also reminded me of the wonderful memories and experiences that i have had. And i'm thankful for that!

*She was the original cast member of Cats who sang this song.

Don't look back in anger* - Oasis

So it's for real. Oasis are splitting up. Or have they split up?

I've not been such a huge fan of theirs - but a fan i am! And sad is how i felt when i heard of the split!

I must give credit to Vera. Come to think about it, she introduced a lot of good music to me. But the best is definitely Oasis! And she recommended the best - '(What's the story) morning glory'.

If i have to choose some albums which i think is the best - and tt i could just listen to it thru from the first song to the last, this has got to be in the list!

Sadly, IMHO, they never reached such heights ever again. Not close. I mean, Wonderwall, Don't Look Back In Anger, Champagne Supernova, etc.

After the Beatles, has any other British group come this close to making it so big in the States?

Unfortunately, if news reports are anything to believe, Noel said that it was intimidation from management and bandmates which caused him to quit the group. So sad.

But at least we have their songs and albums to remember them. And when we do, let us not be angry - but let there be love!

Pics taken from various sites online

*Their first single to feature Noel on lead vocals.

Friday, 11 September 2009

Better off alone* Marie Digby

It was a big surprise to me when i found out - at Taipei Airport - that the lead singer of one of my fav groups, the Cranberries, has released not one but TWO solo albums!!!!! And i din know about it!!!!!!

So when i got back, i went online to get as much info as i can about the albums. Unfortunately, both did not do very well. Which was a huge surprise to me! Ms O'Riordan has a wonderfully special and powerful set of vocals! This got me thinking about how many of these lead singers failed in a solo career!

Gary Barlow of
Take That - good voice, talented bloke, bad solo career!

Susanna Hoffs of the

Linda Perry of 4 Non Blondes.

But thankfully, there are always exception to the general rule - or were those above the exceptions?
Those who did well - George Michael! Very successful in Wham! Even more so as a solo artiste!


I actually forgot about Robbie Williams!!!! How could i when i mentioned Gary Barlow!!! I only remembered when i read the news today that Robbie is coming out from self-imposed exile!!!!

Pics taken from various sites online

*A track from her first album, Unfold.

Monday, 31 August 2009

Reason to believe* - Wilson Phillips

So everyone is excited about the country celebrating its 52nd year of independence! Not me.

I know there are things i shud be thankful about - but i am one who is never patriotic!!!!

After 52 years, we still have laws that put people under detention without a charge or trial. And we have leaders who think that such laws are just!!!!

We still hear of innocent people being beaten up - and some even killed - while under police detention!!!!

We have witnesses who are found dead after spending the night at the MACC office.

We hear of torture tactics used during interrogation.

Tear gas are still being used against citizens who are merely exercising their basic human rights!

Discrimination is practiced rampantly and openly!!!

Religious intolerance - just this week itself, a group of Malay people staged a protest march - against a Hindu temple!!!! And to make things worse, they paraded a head of a cow, the holy and sacred animal of the Hindu religion!!!!!

People talk about things getting better. The possibility of ending racial discrimination, equality for all citizens. An improvement of the judiciary.

I am a pessimist - but even so, i can't believe this country is heading in the right direction! You won't find me flying and waving a Malaysian flag proudly!!! Only government servants do that as they are told to do so. Only taxi drivers stick the flags on their cabs to attract customers.

*One of the widely covered songs that i know, this version is a cover version too!

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Hot n cold* - Katy Perry

15 I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! 16 So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth.
Revelations chapter 3

Lukewarm - apathetic, indifferent, uncommitted, unconcerned

A timely reminder from this evening's prayer meeting - we need God in our lives.

*This was the song that introduced me to Katy Perry!

Sunday, 23 August 2009

Reunited* - Peaches & Herbs

...and it feels so good! :-)

*A huge hit in the late 70s, it topped both the pop and soul charts.

Saturday, 22 August 2009

Schadenfreude - Gary & Nicky from the cast of Avenue Q

The title of this song is a German 'loanword' which has been interpreted as "largely unanticipated delight in the suffering of another which is cognized as trivial and/or appropriate". Basically, it just means taking delight i other people's suffering.

Now i can only guess how many of you must have been reading with delight about the pain and the loss i've been suffering in the last few posts. Fair enuf. This is an open blog and all are welcomed to read - and react however you want to.

Still, it shocks me that some people actually experience great delight over it - and laugh me at my face when they see me. To me, tt's a new low.

Well, here is the latest - no more emo posts about it anymore. Go away. Shoo. Find yr sick amusement some place else.

Friday, 21 August 2009

In the wee small hours of the morning* - Carly Simon

So Ted's mom (in HIMYM) told him that nothing good ever happens after 2 am. I'm sorry but with all due respect, i whole-heartedly disagree.

So many wonderful and brilliant things have taken place in the wee small hours of the morning for me - some may even say, Legen... wait for it... dary!!!!

I mean, as students, what will you be doing after 2 am? Fast asleep? Studying? Doing your essay which is due in 8 hours' time?

We've had so many wonderful times - and it need not be something 'special' or out of the ordinary! We could - and most of the time - be just sitting in the common areas and chatting away. Or drinking. Or eating. Or practising kung fu moves!!!! Lol! Yes, yes. On the fourth floor kitchen of Marley Hall at the Barking Campus of UEL!

Or how about taking a walk to the 24 hours Tesco cuz one of us ran out of printer ink?

Or dressing up to go over to the frozen lake just to see if the ice was strong enuf to support our weight (it wasn't)!

Or those long long telephone calls thruout the nite?

Or those European Nights when i'll be jumping up and down but trying very hard to remain quiet and singing under my breath, "You'll never walk alone".

Or just sitting at a Indian stall, 2 cups of pulled tea and the whole table covered with law books and notes.

Or those lonely nights when i would sit on that freezing metal bench and look up into her room, wishing and hoping that she too would look out and see me there?

How about dancing along the empty road with tears in my eyes but a silly smile on my face? (Ok, ok - that may have taken place before 2 am)?

One of the most magical nights was waking up in a strange eeriness - like i was in a dream. I looked out my window and the entire world was covered with thick white soft fluffy snow! I could hear the laughter and squeals of joy of the people outside, playing in the snow - and i joined them quickly. We were out til the sun came out. It was only when we decided to go back to our rooms and change into something dry that we realised that we were completely knackered!!!!

That my frens, was truly legendary! Too bad our exploits to the nearby park to catch a duck surely took place before 2 am - but that too was simply legen... wait for it... dary!

So yeah. Good things can happen - before or after 2 am. It's just how we view things. I could have just chosen to cry all alone on that road - but i decided to dance instead! :-)

*This version is found on the soundtrack of the movie, Sleepless in Seattle.

Telephone* - Sheena Easton

(Pic taken from online)

Yup, the circle is now complete. I started off with a Nokia on a DIGI line and now i'm back with a Nokia on a DIGI line!

Yes, my phone is finally here!!! :-) Actually, it was here a couple of days ago - but i haven't started using it yet!!! Too busy... well, more like too lazy! To learn how to use it. Since it's a Nokia, it shud be user frenly.

Anyways, which colour do u think is nicer? I really like the red one. but since i bought it via mail order, the colour was chosen for me.

Yeah, it wasN'T the red one. I got the blue one. Which isn't really bad!

And not the first time too! My Sony Erickson was blue. One of my old Nokia was blue too. And blue seems to be the colour for me at this point of time!

*One of her big hits, it was nominated for a Grammy in the early 80s!

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

She's the one* - Robbie Williams

Being in a couple is hard. And committing, making sacrifices; it's hard. But if it's the right person, then it's easy. Looking at that girl and knowing she's all you really want out of life, that should be the easiest thing in the world. And if it's not like that, then she's not the one.

Marshall 'Marshmallow' Eriksen (HIMYM S01E12)

*This was actually a remake of a song by World Party - and it went on to win inter alia the Brit Award in 2000 for single of the Year.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Anything is possible* - Debbie Gibson

Is the LORD's arm too short? (Numbers 11:23)

I forget it too. But after seeing his great works and miracles in my life, why do i still wonder and doubt? Nothing is impossible for him!

*The title song to her 3rd album

Sunday, 16 August 2009

Longer* - Dan Fogelberg

Mun Onn would have held on a little longer if he knew at that time it was the last time he got to hold your hand.

That was my status not too long ago on FB. I had to smile when that generated sad smileys of different kinds!


I still feel the same. And not just with respect to holding her hands. But also hugging her, smelling her hair, having a meal with her... everything, in fact! If only i knew it was the last time, i'd done it longer.

*His highest charting hit of his career.

I swear* - All 4 One

So i finally played futsal - after so so long! No surprise at how bad i played - not to say that i was ever good.

It was good fun - and a good work-out!

But one student kept on screaming out a 4 lettered foul word again and again. Actually, he did that only when he failed to score - which was pretty often that day! And mind you, he did not just say it out. He shouted it out!!!

I guess it shouldn't be any surprise that in a heated game like that, these kinda language is used to let out frustration. But after hearing it over and over and over again, it gets a bit painful in the ears.

I remember tho during my primary school days when we used to play football using some seed from the trees that grow in my school. We used to scream out this chinese phrase (suffice to say that it's acronym is 'TNS').

The funny thing is that none of us knew wat it meant!!!! I remembered asking a fren about it and he said he din know but he supposed it must be a bad word!

The other funny thing was that we dun shout it when we miss. We shout it out when we wanna take a shot! Just before unleashing a kick, we would shout it out - almost like an intimidation against the other side. But we seem to kick better when accompanied with such a shout!

Boys! Sigh...

Oh, i'm glad i finally got to try out my Puma boots! :-)

*Hitting the top of the charts in the UK in the summer of 1994. I remember listening to it while packing my stuffs.

Saturday, 15 August 2009

Through the rain* - Mariah Carey

Well, i did ask for the rain!!! Yeah, little children. Be careful what u ask for - you may just get it!!!!

The first half of this year has been just brilliant!!!! It started off with me being in London, then again at London!!! Then the addition of tGiF! Then another 2 trips to Saigon.

Then, suddenly, the skies opened at the beginning of the 2nd half. And it started raining. And just like the saying, when it rains, it pours!!!!

The worse thing is that the person whom i thought will be with me getting wet - or holding the umbrella for me - is not here.

I can make it. As always, in times like these, i experience the supernatural strength and grace to endure the circumstances and be strong.

*The 1st single of her 8th album, it didn't do very well.

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Disappointment* - The Cranberries

Movies this summer has been a disappointment. Perhaps expectations were high. The last 'hope' for me was GI Joe - and that too did not manage to deliver - for me, anyways.

The best thing from the movie?

If you have caught the trailer, then IMHO, you have seen all there is to be seen! Unless you wanna see how it ripped off so many parts from Star Wars!

The final underwater dog-fight scene was like how the rebel forces attacked the Death Star in Episode 4. I was so glad that they did not have a 'trench' scene or i'd have walked out!

When Duke and the Baroness were trying to escape in their underwater sub-thingy, how many of you thought of the Snowspeeders from Episode 5? And the way how they got out of the whole place as it blew up? Yup, the Millenium Falcon did the same thing in Episode 6!

And the final battle between Snake-Eyes and Storm-Shadow? Yes, Obi-Wan and Vader duel from Episode 4? And then when SS joined his swords together at the handles - yes, Darth Maul's saber from Episode 1. Even the way how SS falls after he is killed is like how Maul fell - only difference is that SS did not split into 2 parts!

I must admit that the first scene where the Baroness tried to steal the weapon was pretty good. Apaches being blown away. Those were pulse guns, right? Cool. So was Scarlett's bike ride thru the Paris traffic. But Scarlett's gun had this irritating kiddish sound - 'eeeeeeeeeeee'.

I'm not saying that it is bad. It just din blow me away. Just like Terminator Salvation. Just like Transformers RoTF. What other summer big movie was there? Dun get me started on Wolverine where Hugh Jackman had this perpetual constipated look thruout the whole movie!

Where is the toilet????

All these were not really bad. Just weren't that great. Sigh...

For some reason, Star Trek did not work for me.

At least Harry Potter was not too bad! :-)

The best movie this year is definitely 'Departures' - which i will blog about later.

Summer is coming to an end. But there is still hope - can Pixar save the summer with 'Up'? Or will Peter Jackson blow us all away with 'District 9'? We'll see!

Pics taken from online

*Track 8 from their most succesful album so far.

Monday, 10 August 2009

A place in time* - Amanda Abizaid

I find it sadly ironic that someone who acts like i dun exist, ignores me and sidelines me, suddenly wants to be my 'best' fren and expect me to open up to him! Of course, there are others who despite seeing me on a regular basis, refuse to talk to me and ask me directly but would rather stalk my blog and then hold discussions about what is actually going on in my life!

I'm so looking forward to tomorrow nite - a reunion of old frens! :-)

I'm finishing season 10 of Friends. Watching it always gets me emotional. After all, i started watching Friends while i was at Rayleigh Tower. So inevitably, i will think of my frens there and i will miss them a lot.

While watching the episode when they find out that the Bings will be moving out of that very apartment, i started thinking of our flat - flat 11. Just like in the episode where they showed flashbacks of that apartment, i started having my own flashbacks too!

I remembered the very first time i stepped into it and met Yuki. I remember when i sat in the kitchen and chatted with Ghisseh. I remembered the late nites in the dining hall eating with Michael and Tom. I remember the movie nights we had, the parties, the birthday celebrations, the drinking sessions. I remember watching world cup matches there. I remembered how all of us gathered there to admire the brilliant rainbow outside, or look at the snow falling. I smiled thinking of us dancing on the benches. I remember the times when i sat there all by myself, watching the sunrise. I recall the hellos and the goodbyes, the pastas and the pizzas, the sushis and the rice, the wine and the pina coladas, the laughters and... more laughters!

I just finished watching the episode where Rachel prepares to leave for Paris and is saying her goodbyes to everyone. And i started remembering the goodbyes. The large entourages early in the mornings or late at nights to the bus stop just to say our farewells.

Flat 11 initially was a cold unfriendly place - one floor in a huge imposing square block. But it soon became a refuge. It became hang-out place. It became our home. And is it any wonder that when times are bad here, when things are rough and difficult, i find myself running back there and hiding there just for a while? I have been doing that far too often lately, tho. :-(

So long ago, Another life
I could feel your heart beat
It's not a dream, remember us
I can see it in your eyes

We'll find a place in time
A place in time beyond the sun

We'll find a place in time
A place in time to call our home

*The theme song to the TV series, 4400.

Sunday, 9 August 2009

I will survive* - Cake

I don't expect my love affairs to last for long
Never fool myself that my dreams will come true
Being used to trouble I anticipate it
But all the same I hate it - wouldn't you?

So what happens now?
Another suitcase in another hall
So what happens now?
Take your picture off another wall
Where am I going to?
You'll get by, you always have before
Where am I going to?

Time and time again I've said that I don't care
That I'm immune to gloom, that I'm hard through and through
But every time it matters all my words desert me
So anyone can hurt me - and they do

So what happens now?
Another suitcase in another hall
So what happens now?
Take your picture off another wall
Where am I going to?
You'll get by you always have before
Where am I going go?

Call in three months time and I'll be fine I know
Well maybe not that fine, but I'll survive anyhow
I won't recall the names and places of Each sad occasion
But that's no consolation -- here and now

So what happens now?
Another suitcase in another hall
So what happens now?
Take your picture off another wall
Where am I going to?
You'll get by, you always have before
Where am I going to?
Don't ask anymore

Tim Rice

*Their cover version of the classic by Gloria Gaynor.

Thursday, 6 August 2009

Sometimes love just ain't enough* - Patty Smyth and Don Henley

1 Corinthians chapter 13
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

*Their hit single way back in 1992

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

Sorry seems to be the hardest word* - Blue

All of them gave me the same advice - just go and apologise to her. Say you are sorry. But i refused. Simply because i am so sure that i did not do anything wrong. So why should i say that i am sorry? It would set a really bad precedent! At that point, i was scolded and told not to think like a lawyer!!!

Yes, it is sometimes hard for one to say sorry. Why is that so? Well, it would mean that the person admits guilt. It would involve the swallowing of the pride.

Then, there are those who just cannot accept the fact that they could ever do wrong! It is never their fault - so therefore, there is never a need to say sorry.

Yes, some of you must be jumping up now and saying that i am exactly like that kind of a person! Well, i am not. Or so i think!!! After all, i have said sorry before many times.

So what made this time so different? Well, it really isn't, actually. Being right is important - but sometimes, it is better to - as the cantonese say - "eat dead cat" than to be right all the time.

So tt's wat i did. If it was important enuf, i'll eat that stupid dead cat. If the relationship is important enuf, i'll do anything to ensure it is saved and protected.

Now, wat will happen if i ate the dead cat and still dun get the results?

Kinda sad, rite? End up with no more pride, nothing... except the horrible after-taste of the dead cat. Sigh...

*Their remake of Elton John's classic

Sunday, 2 August 2009

Run* - Leona Lewis

Perhaps it is good that i have a bad run before i take a 3 months plus break from competitive running.

A flying saucer landed near us before the race started!

I thought i did not too bad. But the timing cannot lie. I ran slow - even slower than the really bad run last Saturday!!! What a surprise! last Saturday, it felt like i walked for most of the way. the strange part about it is that last Saturday's run was longer than today's!!! Ok, only by 500 meters but it is still longer. Yet, i completed it faster than today's run!!!

It was hilly and i walked a lot too. And this is the first run ever when i actually walked pass the finish line. Everyone will end off the race in style. After all, at the finish line, there are loads of people there cheering you on. Last Saturday, i was suffering from cramps but i still forced meself to jog pass the finish line.

We had to run into the stadium to end the race!

Oh, this run also gave what some felt was the best ever running vest - and it has to be this race when they ran out of sizes and gave me a very obscene looking size M. Obscene cuz when i tried it on, it was like my second skin! Spandex superhero type! Too bad i din have a superhero body.

Typical M'sians pushing and shoving their way to gt the free drinks

Oh, oh - i finally got to see 'Pee Ass' - some girl i've been stalking following her blog for a while. I must say that reading her blog palyed a big part in pushing me to run again. and it was thanks to her that i finally bought a pair of Brooks - and this run was my Brooks' maiden run. It felt really really good! Worth every sen. Too bad it din help me achieve a better time!

So no more runs till the Penang Bridge in November. But i'll try to make meself run a 10 km course at least once a month til then!

*Her remake of Snow Patrol's song.

Good day* - Jewel

Saturday was a good day! :-)

It was time to send me car for service. The service center is near Atria shopping complex in PJ. What i normally do is leave me car there and then hang around that area for a couple of hours.

I would normally start off with seafood noodles at the nearby Teochew Noodle shop. Yummy!

The noodles - with seaweed, foochuk, fishballs and fish cakes.

The star attraction for me tho was the deep fried fish cake - yummy and the skin is crunchy!

Thereafter, i will walk around and window shop. There's this huge book warehouse at Atria and it's always a joy to wander aimlessly there and occasionally discover a hidden gem!

After that, i headed to Lotus for a nice glass of hot 'pulled tea' and read. It's so nice to just sit and read. the weather was really nice and it was rather breezy there.

After that, walked summore - and i discovered a little gem indeed! Shoes!!! At the concourse area, there was a small area where Brooks shoes were going for 60% off!!! I have been seriously thinking of investing in a pair of proper and real running shoes! Nope, Nike doesn't count. Only a few brands are reputed to be specialising in running shoes - Asics, NB and Brooks.

The salesman there did a pretty good job. I allowed meself to be putty in his hands and he naturally recommended me the most expensive pair there. It normally costs close to RM500!!! Now, it was just slightly less than RM200.

Oh, the salesguy also comment that i have a big foot. And you know what they say about guys with big feet - they also have big.... shoes!!! ;-)

Brooks Glycerin 6 - so they have the new Glycerin 7 out now.

I decided to walk about to thin about it. And i decided to go get it! :-)

I must say that retail therapy is really therapeutic! Felt so good after that!!! Altho the cost of the car service was close to RM1,000, that din dampen my spirits, tho. :-)

I really enjoyed that day - very simple. But good food, time spent reading and of course, getting a real bargain!

That nite was the Law Ball. To be honest, i din really enjoy meself at all. As one of the hosts commented after a musical item (or was it a comedy item?), she felt like she was bewitched, bothered and bewildered!!! Still it wasn't all that bad. It was good to see the students receive their just rewards for the hard work they put it - and i felt very proud of them all. It was good to see them all nicely dressed up like pretty ladies and good looking gentlemen. It also felt good to see the students again! :-)

Oh, the food was not too bad too! It was almost like a wedding dinner meal - altho the waiter serving our table had something against me!!! He as always giving me less than everyone else! Ah well...

*The 2nd single from her 5th album.

Saturday, 1 August 2009

Always on my mind* - Willie Nelson

Maybe I didn't treat you
Quite as good as I should have
Maybe I didn't love you
Quite as often as I could have
Little things I should have said and done
I just never took the time
You were always on my mind
You were always on my mind

Maybe I didn't hold you
All those lonely, lonely times
And I guess I never told you
I'm so happy that you're mine
If I make you feel second best
Girl, I'm sorry I was blind
You were always on my mind
You were always on my mind

Tell me, tell me that your sweet love hasn't died
Give me, give me one more chance
To keep you satisfied, satisfied

Little things I should have said and done
I just never took the time
You were always on my mind
You are always on my mind
You are always on my mind

(words & music by wayne thompson - mark james - johnny christopher)

*Won the Grammy for song of the Year in 1983.

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Perfect* - Simple Plan

"In the end, it's these small things that you remember - the little imperfections that made them perfect for you. So to my beautiful children, i hope one day you too find yourselves life-partners who are beautifully imperfect as your father was to me".

In memory of Yasmin Ahmad - tho i never knew her personally, yet she manages to touch my heart and cause my eyes to cry.

I know i am far from perfect. I'm not the perfect son (ask me mom), not the perfect brother (ask me sis), not the lecturer (ask me students)... and the list goes on. But i hope that in my imperfection, i can still be beautifully imperfect to you.

*Their final single from their debut album and their biggest hit on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart.

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

All by myself* - Eric Carmen

They say that it's lonely at the top. Being the leader means usually being alone - and it's the same when it comes to the church.

I'm beginning to see it so clearly again as i study the Life of Moses in BSF. I'm glad that God is revealing new stuffs to me in this very familiar study.

Like for example, i never realised that Moses had to put up the tabernacle all by himself!!! But that was how important the job was - and God wanted him to do to ensure everything is done properly and in order.

We're not talking about a 4-men dome tent here! It was big. It was elaborate.

(Pic taken from online)

And Moses put it up all alone. Not easy being the leader!!! And very unlike a lot of leaders these days who will happily delegate these kinda physical tasks to others.

Yesterday, we learnt about the Day of Atonement - arguably the most important festival for the Jews. It is a 'public holiday' for everyone - a Sabbath day rest. Mind you, these kinda public hols are serious matters.

But the one person who had to work full time was the High Priest. It was a tough job. All alone, he had to carry out all the bloody rituals - no, i did not use the word 'bloody' as a swear word. It was literally a bloody job! He had to personally take the animals and then slaughter them to be sacrificed! We're not talking about chickens here - bulls and goats!

So while everyone else sits around literally, he does all the hard work, get all bloodied - and doing all that for the people!!!

Not easy, not easy.

As was said in the movie Watchmen - the Watchmen watch over us but who watches over them?

May i humbly suggest that we take time to appreciate our leaders and to give them our full support at all times.

*Written by Carmen too, it borrows heavily from the second movement (Adagio Sostenuto) of Sergei Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Opus 18.

Monday, 27 July 2009

Alone again (naturally)* - Vonda Shepherd

My ex-girlfriend told me once that the reason why she knows that our relationship will not work out is because i am not the 'type' that can carry on a long term relationship.

It's so ironic that she felt that way - cuz that only showed how well she knew me. And because she knew me so well, she decided she could not be with me anymore!!!

Well, some things never change. So it's back to being The Lone Ranger or Han Solo again. Watched Harry Potter by meself last Friday. Satisfied my craving for spicy food with a nice banana leaf meal just now.

The scary part of it all is that it felt so normal!!! It's like i've been on me own for so long that it is natural for me to be alone again. There was a strange sort of comfort that the familiar feeling brought. No awkwardness. No longing for company. No regrets...?

There was a funny kind of contentment, of freedom, of liberty.

Yet, deep inside, i'm hoping for things to revert back to how it was.

*Her version of this Gilbert O'Sullivan's song.

Shape of my heart* - Backstreet Boys

The signs were not good. Had H1N1 scare the week before. I was still just recovering from my phlegm-my cough when the race suddenly came up and surprised me!

I woke up that morning with a stiff neck and a sharp pain in my shoulder. I tried to get as much rest as i could but i just couldn't sleep.

As i drove to Putrajaya, i used my 'Touch n Go' card only to be informed that i have insufficient credit left. Hello??? It was merely RM1.60!!! The car behind nicely reversed to allow me to back up and move to a cash lane.

I was there early and alone. Actually, another fren wanted to follow me - but i knew that tGiF wouldn't be happy if i went with her. So she ended up not going and i had to kill time all by meself. I just took some random pics here and there and people-watched.

The Palace of Justice - the starting and ending point.

Sun setting

It was a really hot day and as the sun set, it blazed upon us all. The sun soon left but the heat remained.

I really did not enjoy the run at all. It has been so hot and humid even at nights - can u imagine running in those kind of conditions?

The plus points - there was enuf water! More than enuf!!! As it was a hot day, they even started giving out water before the race started. But what was bad for me was that they started giving out water really early!!! And it was given out in bottles. So even tho i wasn't thirsty yet, the 'Malaysian' in me kicked in and i grabbed a bottle - just in case. It turned out to be a real burden. Since they gave out water quite liberally, i decided not to drink from my bottle. So i ran with an almost full bottle of water for more than half the race!!!

I was so totally unprepared for the race. It was rather difficult. I walked for most of the way. At one point of time, i was psych-ing meself up and was about to start running again all the way to the end - when i was greeted by a sign telling us that there were 5 km more to go!!! The Indian uncle next to me read it out loud, with a tone of irony in his voice! To me, that sign was like a bucketful of cold water over my enthusiasm!!! It really killed me. What???? I've only completed half of the race????

So i trudged all the way to the end, telling meself tt i'll run the last 2 km. I tried but my calves started to cramp.

In the last km, there were ppl encouraging us on. One guy was spurring us on and asking us to give him a high 5. I theatrically used my right hand to lift up my left to give him a weak high 5. He ended up having a good laugh.

To my disappointment, there were none of the usual Milo or 100 plus booths. I was feeling so tired and hungry. There was a 1901 stall and eating the frankfurter only made me feel nauseous. Thankfully, there was a can of isotonic drink in the goodie bag (which interestingly, they only gave out after the race).

Along the race, i was thinking - as usual - of what to eat after the run. When it was over, i lost all appetite and all i could think of was going home, having a nice cold shower and going to sleep. No carbo replenishing. I sorta did that for lunch the next day when i stuffed meself silly with a Jap buffet at Hilton PJ. But not much carbo, tho.

I timed meself and it was pretty bad. I only comfort meself with the fact that this was a 11.5 km race and i prolly completed the 10 km mark at a much better time when compared with the KL run a few weeks ago.

I din enjoy the run at all. I must admit that while waiting for the starting gun, i was getting restless and excited. I entertained meself along the way by keeping up with strangers whom i only remember by their bib numbers. There's the irritating A1111 kid who stepped on me toes 3 times b4 the race started. There's this B2423 auntie and her running mates. There was this running bride too!

Running along the bridges wasn't that much fun. Not like running along the Penang Bridge!

Would i do it again? Possibly. Probably. But at least it was a good warm-up for next week's King of the Road! And it was a reminder of what a bad shape my heart is in. Still, it was a nice feeling when waking up the next day with aches - you know, the nice kind of muscle aches, the kind that reminds you that u worked hard! :-)

*Their first single from their 4th album, Black & Blue.

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Ain't no mountain high enough* - Diana Ross

A chance encounter almost 3 years ago in a land more than 10,000 km away resulted in a hasty(?) promise which has returned to ... well, i won't say "haunt"!!! It's not so bad, really!

It was ... no, not ironic but more serendipitous that i was thinking about that promise at around the same time that she did. But she din just stop at thinking. She sent me a message reminding me of it - and cashing in on that promise!

So i guess that means i'll be going mountain climbing this September! As agreed, it'll be a mountain climb that is somewhere in between the can-die-kind-of-climb and the stroll-in-the-park-kind-of-climb. Tentatively, it'll be 3 to 5 days kind of climb. Yes, to some of us, that is the can-die-kind-of-climb.

Still, i need ideas and suggestions! And also, if u wanna come along, great!

*Her cover of Ashford and Simpson's classic.

Monday, 20 July 2009

One more chance* - Madonna

So what does one do when one is sick during the weekend? Watch cable TV, of course!

It was a pleasant surprise when i rewatched 2 movies which i have seen so long ago! The surprise was how good it was!

The first was Titanic.

I've never been a fan of the movie. I thought it was just overrated. I did not have a good time watching it too. I remember who i watched it with and where we watched it. It was at Sunway Pyramid TGV cinemas.

It was after a long day at work. I was also having flu. So a very exhausted me went reluctantly to watch the movie, sniffing away. The people in front of me must be thinking that i was crying thruout most of the movie!!!!

Put yrself in me (DocMarts) boots - would you enjoy a 194 minutes movie if you were in my condition? No! I hated every moment of it!!! I was just willing it to end as quickly as possible!!!

But this time round, i enjoyed it! I laughed out loud when Rose shut her eyes and swung the axe to free Jack from his hand-cuffs! I was moved seeing the poor people all panicking - and eventually dying. It was actually quite exciting seeing how Jack and Rose try to get off the ship safely - even if i know how it would all end!!! The effects were really good.

And i was also touched by Kate Winslet's portrayal of Rose! This was true love! Love that put her own interest aside. Love that was willing to risk her own life - even when all seemed so hopeless, she never gave up. Instead of being dray and safe on one of the life boats, she braved the sinking ship to rescue her lover.

And of course the musicians! True gentlemen and heroes!

May i add tho that i did not watch the whole movie again - i only started watching when the ship was starting to sink. And even then, it did feel a tad bit long before the end!!!

Next movie - Four Weddings and a Funeral.

Now i never dislike this movie. I'm pretty sure i watched it when i was in London during my undergraduate days. But it never really struck me as one of the bests! I love rom-coms and i'm a big fan of Hugh Grant. But this movie never really made it to me heart. It was good, ho-hum and tt's it.

But after watching it again, the sneaky little fella has crept its way into me heart! I missed the starting but still managed to watch all 4 weddings and the funeral so i guess i din really miss much.

I din remember it being so so funny! And i din remember being moved to tears too! But there i was, laughing like a madman and tearing at other parts. The characters were all so lovely! The bond of frenship they shared! The witty and dry humour. I loved how Fiona had such strong feelings for Charles but it was never reciprocated. So bittersweet.

Yes, it is now ranked among the top on my list - nowhere near Love, Actually or About a Boy but not far behind!

So i leanrt a very important lesson - in giving things a second chance! I may be in for a pleasant surprise! :-)

Pics taken from online

*One of her lessor known singles but it is my favourite song of hers!

Saturday, 18 July 2009

Black or white* - Michael Jackson

The new kits have been revealed!!! Both the new away kit and the new Euro kit. One is black and the other is white. Have a look:-

So now the big problem is - which shall i get? The black one or the white one? Hhmmm... tough choice, eh?

Well, tGiF made it a little easier for me when she bought me the black one edi! So now, shall i oso get the white one? How, how?

Pics taken from online

*Why this song has so much memories for me? See here!

Friday, 17 July 2009

The flu song* - Jewel

So i woke up with a bad throat. Must have been the fried chicken? Lack of water? Ah well...

But things got interesting late in the evening when i started having chest pains! That's ok - until tGiF told me that chest pains is one of the symptoms for H1N1 flu!!! So tt's 2 symptoms - sore throat and chest pains. I checked online for other symptoms - but they were all too general. Headaches - i get that almost on a daily basis. Shortness of breath - well, i am out of shape so i do suffer from this once in a while. Lethargy and unable to get up from bed - i go thru this EVERYDAY!!!!

But just to be on the safe side, i agreed to go and see a doctor. I was honestly more worried about the people around me - me mom and sis, and especially the small kids! On top of that, i'm supposed to go to Ipoh this weekend and among other things, have to attend a wedding dinner.

Checked in at the Emergency Ward at Subang Medical. I was wondering what would happen if i was really diagnosed with H1N1!!! Was planning to ask me sis to bring me laptop over so tt i can spend the next few days being quarantined and watching movies - while being attended by 'astronauts' (using the cute description used by one of my students when she was quarantined). Perhaps they would have to close down my college too! Woohoo! Big news! I'll be famous - the guy who shut down Taylor's!

A nurse attended to me first. Did the usual stuffs like checked blood pressure and took me temperature. She was more concerned about the chest pains and decided to do a Electrocardiography - an ECG.

Before i knew it, i felt like i was a stalled car with a dead battery and was about to be jumped started with around 10 cables connected to me! See the diagram below:-

(Pic taken from Wikipedia)

Initially, there was a perplexed look in the eyes of the nurse. Oh no - the truth is gonna be out. i am actually a heartless person!!!! But eventually, the machine thingy detected my heart and recorded the relevant info.

To cut the long story short, my heart is well. The chest pains were a symptom (most probably) of common flu, and not H1N1. Since i dun have fever or pneumonia, i should be alright.

The damage? RM216.80!!!!! But to sleep with a clear mind tonite? And for my loved ones not to worry? Priceless.

Praise God!

*I heard this song as it was included in her single for 'You were meant for me'.

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Make me lose control* - Eric Carmen

Marking exams papers are always stressful. Especially since i have to do it within 48 hours. It doesn't help that last night's weather was perfect for sleeping - which was exactly wat i did!

It is stressful cuz the answers do drive me up the wall. After telling them again and again, they still make the same mistake. The dead person can 'take a criminal action' against the accused!!!

But it can be rather entertaining!!!

There was this question about how a fight took place during a sale. What really cracked me up was when one student suggested the accused - who was a woman - was suffering from DR ("diminished responsibility")!!!!! Lol!!!

What is DR? Well, basically, it's when a person 'should not be held criminally liable..., as their mental functions were "diminished" or impaired'. I guess during big sales, all women suffer from diminished responsibility??!!

*I used to be so crazy over this song and it's infectious bass riff.

Relax* - Frankie Goes to Hollywood

I din realise initially but the new place i'm staying at is just next to a park. So i decided to take a walk in the late evening. It was nice! :-)

It was right smack in the middle of the city but so many people were there. I almost regretted not taking along my dslr with me.

There was a group of boys doing all kinds of tricks on their bicycles. A lot of people were playing a 'sepak raga' like game. It's keepy uppey but using something like a feather shuttlecock thingy. A lot of people were playing it, some in big unisex groups, some in pairs!

Many others were playing badminton. Others were just jogging or doing stretching exercises. Not long later, someone turned on a mini compo and all the women got together and started doing aerobics open air. I walked further down to the other end and found another group of women there too.

The park there was like an oasis! In the mad mad hustle and bustle of Ho Chi Minh City, this was like everyone's secret getaway - only that it wasn't a big secret!!! At the end of the day, this is where people go to relax - to borrow the lyrics from the theme song of an old sitcom, to go where everybody knows your name, and they're always glad that you came!

I manage to catch this little amusing scene with me mobile. No, they were not doing the 'Locomotion'!!! The ladies were like massaging each other's back!

I've been told that houses are very small and cramped there. That explains why people like to hang out outside. They would just go on their little 'cub chais' and sit by the road side, chatting or eating from the various food vendors.

I noted that they love playing chinese chess too! They'd play by the roadside. If it rains, that will not deter them. i saw this group huddled in the back portion of a stationwagon playing the game!

This was their way of relaxing - cheap but effective!

*Their debut single.

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Everything changes* - Take That

I was looking down at my Tevas today. Soon, i'll not be wearing them anymore. I remember when i used to swear by Karrimor sandals. I loved them. Then came Teva. And soon - very soon, mind ya - i'll be joining on the Crocs bandwagon. Gonna be sad to say goodbye to me Tevas - it has been with me thru much. And has travelled to places that some can only dream of going to.

I remembered a post not too long ago where i talked about changing from Maxis to Digi. That was like a full circle.

Eventually, i'll be converting back to a Nokia handset too. yes, the circle will be complete then. I started off with a Nokia on Digi. And i'm heading back in that direction.

But it's not just tastes. It's views and values too. I remember i use to be a strong believer in "it's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all". I just read the same thing in someone's blog recently and i just said under my breath, "Loser".

*The title song for their 2nd album.

Monday, 13 July 2009

There are worse things I could do* - Stockard Channing

The girls wanted to go there because they wanted to drool over a waiter. I din mind cuz they serve some really good pork there!

So off we went to Eurodeli! The place has since been renovated!!! The only thing i cannot stand about the place is the paper table mat they use. To me, it has a pretty sick drawing!!!! Have a look at it yourself!

Pigs eating pork??? And they all look so happy!!!! Are there worse things they could do?

*This was the version found on the soundtrack of the movie version of the musical Grease.

Saturday, 11 July 2009

All you need is love* - The Beatles

Here are a couple of photos that i took of photos found in the War Remnant Museum. After looking at this photo and reading the caption, i had to sit down - and made sure the tears dun come flowing out.

And i knew i must share it with everyone - and remind meself constantly of it.

*Brilliant song by the Fab Four!

Friday, 10 July 2009

Hands* - Jewel

The second trip to Ho Chi Minh City gave me an opportunity to check out the many museums there. One must-go museum surely has to be the War Remnants Museum. The strange thing - for moi - was that they closed during lunch time. But that only gave me more opportunity to try out street food!

The other thing that amused me was the sight of this which greeted me when i was about to enter the museum:-

But it really shouldn't be a big surprise. Prevention is better than cure. Better safe than sorry - and a whole lot of other cliches can be said. With the H1N1 flu going around and with so many tourists from high-risk areas, this is a good thing to have.

Especially when there was this french girl who suddenly broke out into a sneezing fit near me. I avoided her after that like a plague pandemic!!! But somehow, she was always nearby! *shudder*

The more i think about, the more i feel sad about it. Washing our hands are such a basic thing. Weren't we taught this even from a young tender age? Yet, such a simple act could have prevented the spread of this virus - and others.

Our hands are very important - but it is a good reminder that we should also keep our hands clean at all times.

*The first single from her brilliant 2nd album which is the favourite of mine!

Thursday, 9 July 2009

A change would do you good* - Sheryl Crow

I finally did it. I change service provider for my mobile phone. After so many years!!!!

Yes, i've GAVE UP ON MAXIS!!!!! I'm back with Digi.

I just could not take it anymore. Maxis is so bad IN my house. It is so frustrating - when i cannot use my mobile phone at home, in my room!!!! The worse thing is that it is not completely no service. There is just sufficient line for the call to come in or go out - but not strong enuf to have a conversation.

Yes, i admit that outside, i do not have any problems with Maxis. But enuf is enuf.

I realised that i have come a full circle! When i first started, i was using Digi. The reason i changed to Maxis was cuz at that time, during my practice days, i traveled around the land a lot. And i found that Digi was very lacking in a lot of other States. Maxis was really good!

Now, back with Digi, i am reminded at how inferior it is!!!! When i'm indoors on campus, the line is very weak. I have to step outdoors!!!! Sigh...

But when tGiF calls me when i'm at home, i can talk to her now! So yes, the change is good! :-)

*Her 4th single from her 2nd album