Monday, August 18, 2014

Start thanking Anwar, Malaysians, he is your saviour

Here's my thank you note, Datuk Seri
It is my opinion that the politicians in Selangor have lost sight on the true meaning of the word 'rakyat'.

If anything it has become an excuse to justify each orchestrated political move, no matter how ludicrous it may sound to a person who still subscribes to logic and common sense.

While I believe the 'rakyat' was never in Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's mind when his family formed Parti Keadilan Rakyat back in 1998, I'm sure many would argue with me, saying that it was the best thing that could happen to the Malaysian political landscape.

I can accept those arguments and respectfully agree to disagree, but I cannot fathom the veils still covering the eyes of the people supporting Anwar after he announced the Kajang Move.

How is it that the Kajang Move can be justified as 'for the rakyat'?

Especially since everything related to Pakatan Rakyat in Selangor just began going downhill from that point on.

Where is the rakyat supposed to fit in this mess, apart from being used as an excuse in the press statements issued by PR lawmakers in support of Anwar and his political maneuvring?

It pains me that staunch supporters of Anwar still see him as the answer to our political woes.

For the record, I can understand if a person refuses to support Barisan Nasional (BN), but it borders on the illogical to expect PR to be the better alternative.

If it wasn't clear to some that the rakyat is the farthest thing on Anwar's mind before this, it should already be the minute he choose to announce his wife's candidacy for Selangor's next Menteri Besar on the very same night Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak addressed the nation with regards to the Malaysia Airlines (MAS) Flight MH17 tragedy.

Najib had a live telecast at midnight on July 22 and some half an hour later, Anwar who had concluded a meeting at the PKR headquarters in Tropicana decided to hold a press conference to announce that Wan Azizah is the preferred choice to replace current MB Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim.

At a time when Malaysia is reeling from two massive aviation disasters, Anwar felt it was in the best interest of the rakyat to announce that he wants his wife to take over as Selangor MB?

Is Abdul Khalid really that terrible of a Menteri Besar that Anwar couldn't wait?

Perhaps let the dust of the MH17 tragedy somewhat settle first? Or wait until the Selangor state assembly reconvenes later in the year? Or wait until the next General Election, since Abdul Khalid had already made it clear before this that this was going to be his last term as MB?

But then again, when Anwar wants something, Anwar goes out and gets it. Oh but wait, despite countless dates given, he is still nowhere near the office on Level 5 of the Perdana Putra complex in Putrajaya, which we all know is his ultimate goal.

What is the next best thing? Appointing his wife as MB to Malaysia's richest state it seems.

The point I'm trying to make is that PR in Selangor should just leave the rakyat out of this mess and carry on as they please because they will do whatever they want anyway.

PAS tried to back Abdul Khalid but somehow, somewhere along the way, they caved in to the coalition's backing of Anwar's proposal.

While they clearly showed resistance to Wan Azizah being appointed MB, yesterday they 'unanimously' agreed.

Pakatan Rakyat gets what Pakatan Rakyat wants.

Again I ask, where does the rakyat fit in all these? The rakyat will have to go to the polls should a statewide election be called if Abdul Khalid decides to dissolve the state assembly and not make it easy for Anwar to place his wife in the state's top administrative post.

The rakyat which these politicians 'care' so much for will have to hit the polls once again despite having done just that slightly more than a year ago. And for what? I don't think I have to mention it again.

While it may be clear as day to me, it is still a blur to many. Particularly with one DAP lawmaker who blogs under the pseudonym SakmongkolAK47 saying today that the nation should be thankful to Anwar for providing the rakyat an alternative to BN.

"Malaysians owe him an eternal debt of gratitude for forging a common platform," DAP lawmaker Datuk Ariff Sabri Abdul Aziz said in his blog today.

I know it is only Monday but I can safely say Encik Sakmongkol is already the winner of the moron of the week award.

So it is with dripping sarcasm that I urge my fellow Malaysians to start sending thank you notes to Anwar.

He is your saviour, isn't he?

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Here's looking at you kid...

If anything, I had always felt that I was born in the wrong decade. The 80s was not entirely a right fit for me, particularly because I always felt more at home with the music, movies, fashion and pace of the 40s and 50s. And to a certain extent the early 60s.

Bogey and Bacall were a point of reference of sorts, apart from Sinatra, the Rat Pack and Brando.

It was a great sense of the old and classy that made me feel more at home than the hurried and gaudy feel of the 80s and later the 90s.

I felt more at ease watching Ingrid's fashion sense and felt more connected to Bogey's flirtatious gaze than anything that 80s Hollywood spewed.

While there were still certain things from the 80s and 90s that I could relate to, for the most part, I just felt more at home with Rick's Cafe and the sounds of the crooners.

Even in my relationship I guess eventually my love for the 40s and 50s somehow guided me into the arms of my old school lover.

Someone older and equally as connected to the days gone by compared to the fast-paced world of today.

Like the Bertie Higgins song, I found the hero to my leading lady.

We have our own late, late show and in each other's arms, we sail away to Key Largo.

Hearing that Lauren Bacall had passed on moved me to pen some words down.

I feel sad that one by one of the old greats have left us.

What Hollywood is producing today does not even come close to what these legends gave us.

So here's looking at you kid and missing all the things you did. 

All of you will continue to live on in the hearts and minds of those who still linger on in the good old days despite it already being 2014.

Like Higgins said, "We can find it once again, I know, Just like they did in Key Largo."

Keep playing it Sam, play it over and over again. Cause I love you still and baby, this can't be the end.

To Lauren, say hi to Bogey for me.... have fun in 'Key Largo'.....

Saturday, June 21, 2014

An open letter to 'retis sakai'

This is an open letter to 'retis sakai'.

Please note that the term 'retis' is used to refer to celebrities, public figures in the entertainment industry who have yet to exhibit an ounce of common sense ever since they rose to 'stardom'.

However, there are times when simply referring to these people as 'retis' do not suffice.

In this letter, the people I am talking about warrant the use of another word to support 'retis', hence 'retis sakai'.

You get my drift.

If you are a celebrity/public figure in the entertainment industry who are well-behaved, exhibit clarity of thought and generally don't behave like a donkey's rear end, do not take offense with this open letter.

Clearly you are not a 'retis' but an artiste.

So do not feel the need to come up with statements like 'tak suka bila orang guna perkataan retis' etc.

If you do, you would have succesfully demoted yourself from artiste to 'retis'.

If you're an artiste, do us all a favour and stay that way because you would probably have realised by now that your kind is a dying breed.

Think, before you tweet.

Moving on to the open letter, it would appear that such a letter has become necessary as I believe we are under attack.

With the barrage of Zombie-related movies, many believe that a Zombie apocalypse may be looming, with some having prepared bunkers and emergency packs, ready to ward off any attempts to eat their brains out.

However, what we have failed to realise is that while the world is getting us all fixated on Zombies and vampires and werewolves, the truth is that another species is actually building up their army right under our noses.

While this letter may be pointless as most of these species do not understand proper English, although they can fool you into thinking that they do as they constantly attempt to update their life progress using the English language.

The sad truth however is that you're ruin my life! Do you see that? You are ruin my life once again! Fix it. Now!

Sorry I veered off the path I'm supposed to be on, but I'm back on track now.

What was I saying?

Aah yes, the open letter. You are ruin my life you moron!

Sorry, sorry, I do that sometimes, it's what some may call a split personality. Kinda like putting on a sexy outfit, strutting your stuff in a Malaysian-type public, and then go all wide-eyed and blur when people criticise your choice of clothing.

That kind of split personality.

Not the kind that requires you to see a shrink and be on actual medication. 

Because the medical kind deserves respect, understanding and delicacy.

The kind I was telling you requires a knock on the head. With a mallet.

Anyway, getting back on track, I decided to type out this letter because these species, of which from this point on shall be referred to as 'retis sakai', may have escaped my blogging radar for quite some time, but I've always been watching.

I rant and bitch about them on my Facebook and Twitter but I think the time has come for me to 'upgrade' them to my blog.

Note that my blog has been dormant for quite some time now. 

They should feel honoured that I decided to 'break my silence' by writing about them, actually, writing to them.

Dear 'retis sakai',

I am in the media line. At the heart of it, I am a journalist and will always be a journalist.

Which means, I get upset when 'retis sakai' hit out at journalists for doing what they have to do.

While some journalists may be assholes, that is the case for any profession, there will always be assholes (much like the entertainment industry), more often than not, in my opinion, the fault lies with the 'retis sakai' and not the journalists.

This particular point will be further elaborated upon later in this letter.

Before I get into it, I shall establish first that you are a public figure (for reasons I don't think I will ever understand) which qualifies you to be called 'retis sakai'.

Therefore, whatever points I raise is based on the fact that you are a public figure, meaning you are somewhat known to the public.

Maybe not everyone, but I'm guessing as long as you have more than 5,000 Twitter followers and get invited to celebrity-type events and ocassionally (or way too much) appear on television in some God-awful drama or telemovie, or you are a permanent statue in David Teo or Yusof Haslam's flicks, then you qualify as a known person.

Or if you are a singer, sorry, if you claim to be a singer, then probably you would have appeared in some self-uploaded YouTube video, or some Program Raya and most definitely Melodi.

Anyway, you get my drift. If you're unknown, this letter would not see the light of day.

So, here goes...

As 'retis sakai' you would definitely be familiar with these terms; Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Keek (thank God that died but Instagram included video uploads so boo).

The number one rule of being 'retis sakai' post-2005 is the need to have all three accounts.

Still okay, because artistes are on social networks too. So are welders, engineers, doctors, journalists, etc.

However, you, 'retis sakai', must be 'ahead' of the rest. You strive to get more followers because to you, the more followers you have, the more accomplished you feel, perhaps. Particularly since you know that you have no placing in the hearts of urban liberals who more often than not, don't even know who you are if you walked up to them and slapped them in their faces.

There are a few names I have in mind, but some time back when I wrote an article condemning Wardina Safiyyah, she wrote an e-mail to the publication where my article appeared, and complained that I should not have 'petik' her name.

After that incident, I felt like I should not 'petik' names and instead just go with 'retis sakai'.


Hanis Zalikha, Nabila Huda, Wardina Safiyyah, Nora Danish, Zarina Anjoulie, Sharifah Sakinah, Emma Maembong, Wardina Safiyyah, Abby Abadi, Wardina Safiyyah and Wardina Safiyyah.

There I said it. Although the one name mentioned four times has actually made her exit from two out of three mentioned social networks, it does not mean her previous cock-ups will easily be forgotten.

Getting back to my point, while you have this power at your fingertips, where thousands of people follow you (either to laugh at you or to worship you, it doesn't matter as long as the numbers keep going up), you feel the need to share your entire life with them.

Remember artistes from those days? They had no social networks. Which was why for the most part, people notice their talent first. Other than that, it is up to the media to make or break them.

But today, with social networks, 'retis sakai' have made it possible to break themselves.

So, my dear 'retis sakai', when you share stuff on social networks, what is your objective? You want people to see what you're up to? Being human, and one that resides in Malaysia, and for the most part I can safely say that a majority of 'retis sakai' are Malays, can't you gauge how people would react?

Predominantly your followers are Malays residing in Malaysia.

Two things you clearly are yourself.

So why do things that is akin to 'digging your own grave'?

To this, many will say 'instagram aku, aku punya sukalah' or 'aku tak nak jadi hipokrit' or 'this is my life, take it or leave it' or 'i am just being true to myself' or 'kita nak hidup tak boleh ambil pusing sangat apa orang nak cakap' or 'mulut orang memang kita tak boleh tutup' and the list goes on and on.

By the way, is there a secret handbook you guys get before becoming a 'retis sakai'? I'm starting to believe there is, because your behaviour and actions and statements appear to come from a template.

Anyway, you are known. Your social network accounts are for public view. While I am sure you thrive on the endless 'cantiknya akak/abang' and 'lawanya' and 'saya nak jadi macam akak/abang' and 'akak/abang ni idola saya' etc, you must also remember that you can't control what people say.

After all, it is you who said 'mulut orang tak boleh nak tutup' kan?

So based on that, if you loathe criticism, why publicize your life?

What I can't stand the most is how you go all holy and innocent and start to generalize all those who criticize you as 'haters'.

No, wait, actually what I can't stand even more than that is the barrage of quote pics that you morons upload after a social network scandal takes place.

"Haters will be haters, you only say bad things about me because you're jealous of me, I am on top of the world, Allah is great, I love my life, I won't let haters take me down, People love to act holier-than-thou so just ignore them."

And of course, the list of quotes goes on and on and on.

And all this because?

You uploaded a picture of yourself wearing skimpy clothes.

Or you uploaded a picture of yourself vacationing with your boyfriend with captions like "kisses all over your face".

Halo samdol, you 'retis', ada followers, orang kenal, some more you open yourself wide by uploading these pictures yourself, what were you expecting?

If people don't comment at all, no compliments, no caci maki, then you would probably be crying in the shower because you're not famous and nobody cares about you anymore.

So what do you want now 'retis sakai'?

If Instagram had a feature to turn off comments, would you use it? Find a mirror, look into it and ask yourself that question. Would you be able to live without the compliments? Or better yet, would you be able to live without the hate comments because then you won't be able to go all holy and innocent when you respond to the hate comments.

You say you want to be close to your fans and share your lives with them, even worse, some say they use Instagram as a journal for their kids to look at someday.

Oh boy.

Ever heard of a photo album?! I think you can still get it at Aeon. 

No wait, ever heard of an external hard disk?!

Never mind.

Back to the issue at hand.

It's actually fine to use Instagram to share your lives with your fans, but not the way you morons are doing it.

What is even more terrible actually is that you hit out at journalists when they follow-up on the issues that you created on your social network accounts.

What do you say?

"Tolong lah leave us alone. Biar kami sort out masalah kami. Jangan tanya lagi. Cukup-cukuplah media memanipulasikan apa yang berlaku."

Hatok hang.

For the most part, you create the mess and then you jump when people hound you to find out what's going on.

Here's a tip, if you want to be left alone, if you don't want people prying into your life, if you don't want people to know what you're up to, fucking don't upload a photo every half an hour.

And to the 'retis sakai' yang suka main upload gambar seksi, gambar dengan boyfriend, gambar clubbing, gambar holiday, terima sahaja lah bila kena hentam.

Why melompat? You started it, right? And what gives you the right to play the holy card when you so conveniently brand those who criticise you as holier-than-thou people?

I also find that some of you resort to dismissing criticism not just by using the term 'haters' but also 'trolls'.

"Oh baru create account nak troll. Patutlah."

Err.... how about responding to actual criticism? Those who make sense? Tak berani kan? Why only choose to respond to 'trolls' or those who use foul language?

Meanwhile, you don't realise that while you're off doing stupid, moronic things, there are so many of your fans who strongly defend you.

Do you know that you're spreading stupidity?

As though we don't have enough stupids in the world as it is, when you do crappy stuff on the internet, and people hit out at you, your hardcore fans start defending you as if their lives depended upon it.

That is allowing stupidity to grow and breed.

Oh the horror.

While you may have worked hard to save up for your lousy vacation, why not let reporters do their jobs? Send some normal photos to them and give them an interview and they'd be happy to put it in the papers or their websites.

That way, you won't run the risk of hitting out at reporters for doing their jobs when shit hits the fan because you want to handle your own life updates on social networks.

The mere fact that you are 'retis sakai' shows that you have no sense of how things work. So leave it to the pro.

You may be stupid, I know that, but even stupid people sometimes have the common sense to leave certain things to professionals.

So now that you have effectively earned your spot as 'retis sakai', perhaps you could start reflecting and maybe, just maybe one day, you will find yourself among artistes.

Just maybe.

Oh what am I saying.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Stop the blame game

IN the aftermath of the arab spring, Malaysians got up and said, 'Hey we have to fight too.' 

And so they did. 

However, the problem with us is that we want to fight but lack the capacity to be intellectual about the arguments we put forth and the battles we choose to pick. 

For the most part, we have always been surface dwellers, and we continue to be so, without bothering to exercise common sense and logic. 

In saying surface-dwellers, it simply means that, generally, we focus more on the surface, without looking into what's underneath.

In even simpler terms, we are not that far different from the boy who cried wolf.

We fight for racial equality and denounce those who we think are racists. 

But how do we do it? 

We become judgmental and brand the racists. 

We insist on being liberal and tolerant but we do that by putting down those who hold on to a certain set of beliefs. 

We say we want more freedom, we want justice, equality, and insist on being liberals.

However, we immediately put down others who do not share our liberal ideals. 

We bash the non-governmental organisation (NGO) Perkasa for being extremely pro-Malays, but we ourselves become extremely pro-liberals, and we trample on those who don't share our views. 

We scream for democracy.

Yet we misinterpret the word. 

Democracy has never meant everyone getting their way. 

That's just plain insanity. 

In our fight to free ourselves from the alleged grasp of bad governance, we insult the freedom fighters before us. 

What we as Malaysians fail to understand, in my opinion, is that the government, whichever party gets to run it, is a mere reflection of us as a whole.

Of late, most of us have been screaming to the government asking them to listen to us, but we refuse to first listen to ourselves.

The government, whoever runs it, was once part of the masses. 

They too were once nobodies.

In fact, we were all born as nobodies.

We are so eager to blame the government for everything that is wrong within our society that we forget, that government we hate came from within us.

If we as a society refuse to change, it doesn't matter who sits in the chair at Level 5 of the Prime Minister's office in Putrajaya.

If we as a society insist on staying the way we are and simply resort to the blame game, it won't matter which party wins the next general election because we will still be a nation that continues to bark at the tree.

Sometimes I wonder why we fail to see that there is an inter-connectedness to everything around us?

We take for granted simple day-to-day things yet we loudly voice out the need to weed out the alleged corruption in our current government.

It all starts with the man (or woman) in the mirror.

Look around us; are we offering bribes to our kids just to get them to either shut up or do well in school?

Why can't we see that everything begins (and ends) with us?

Look at how we treat the foreign workers in our country.

We may not all engage in physical abuse, but we commit grave injustice when we so freely refer to them as though they are lesser human beings when we comment on the issue.

We so carelessly dismiss them as though we are the supreme race, devoid of flaws and mistakes.

And yet, we can easily point fingers and accuse others of being racist.

What is the difference between us and those we blame?

In our fight to be a more tolerant and just nation, we do it by becoming intolerant and unjust ourselves.

We dismiss things we don't understand, and we offhandedly pass remarks about the beliefs of others without bothering to understand the essence of the issue.

For 2014, I just pray that we are granted more common sense and logic.

At the rate we are going, it is not the current government that will run us down, but rather our own stupidity, arrogance and selfishness.