Friday, December 23, 2005

Come Away With Me

The holidays are finally here. Is not that I'm taking a block of annual leave -- I'm accumulating those till next year. I'm just glad it's a long weekend and that I can finally spend and give some quality time with M. A corporate director dropped by in the office today and asked me if I'm taking any leave. I said no and joked that singles like myself don't normally take leave during conventional holiday seasons.

Some friends asked me out to the movies tonight to watch Narnia. That didn't go through.

The one thing that I'd miss this Christmas, no doubt -- my ex-colleagues and their Christmas idiosyncracies. I hope they're doing fine. Take care folks.

I was at Popular just now and after so much indeciveness I finally bought John Banville's The Sea. It's this year's Man Booker Prize winner and I'm such a klutz not to mention a snob for putting so much faith on the outcome of this competition. Why I'm saying this is because after reading 23 pages of The Sea -- I've yet to derive that personal pleasure. I know that is so bloody subjective, maybe it's still too early in the novel, but that's what it is -- a matter of personal taste that basically governs everything I read.

Some Man Booker Prize winners in the past really carried me away and I can't enthuse enough.

1997 - Arundhati Roy, The God of Small Things
1999 - J M Coetzee, Disgrace
2000 - Margaret Atwood, The Blind Assassin and shortlisted Matthew Kneale, English Passengers
2002 - Yann Martel, The Life of Pi
2003 - DBC Pierre, Vernon God Little

Not all winners got my Sin dollar$ mind you. In 1995 I chose Barry Unsworth's Morality Play over the winner, Pat Barker's The Ghost Road. I thought that was a smart decision as I still find the novel mesmerizing after all these years. Yes, I tend to re-read.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Class Over Folks!

Exams over but I'm not particularly thrilled as I hate parting ways with my classmates. I sure have some fond memories with this group and it's great to know that they are within 'reach' via just a click of an email. I even have a classmate all the way from Myanmar who invited me to visit him should I travel to the country. Nice fella, talented and driven, too. He's so young and he already has a Ph.D and a CPA and now he's running an Audit and Consultancy Services and a Management and Accountancy Training school. Imaging that.

It's also interesting to note the general make-up of participants in this course -- all of them seem to be doing well in their careers. Still, the great leveller would be that exam results. No one felt outwardly confident after the 2-hour paper was due. It was that tough -- and I'm still dripping ISO 9001:2000 clauses out of my ears as I'm typing this.

But what's done is done. We said our thanks and goodbyes and left the premise.

Dinner tonight was a packet of Nasi goreng kampung, pretty heavy. I'm supposed to abstain or reduce eating fried stuff but what an awful temptation that was. It required all my strength and will power to yield to it.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

I Check My Vital Sign

The ISO Lead Auditor course ends tomorrow and that will also be the day participants sit for the exams. I personally find exams tedious, not difficult, but tedious. I mean -- all that prep work plus I’m not big on taking notes in class; preferring instead class discussions and presentations. Still, I'm doing a bit of mugging to play it safe -- blogging inclusive. No choice here I guess, otherwise I would be out somewhere enjoying the rest of the afternoon.

There are seven of us in the classroom and this is the first time I’m among like-minded people who take their ISO 9000, 9004 and 9001:2000 seriously and passionately. Lol.. I’ve never seen QMS, continual improvement, audit methods, systems & process approach and ISO clauses enthused so much all within the four walls of the training room -- it’s wonderfully absurd. I’m telling you my vital signs have been good due to this interaction.

This entry is also for my nephew Aiman [I have so many *rakyat its ridiculous… lol] who got his posting after BMT. Looks like another 9 months training for you but this time in OCS. Never thought you made it past BMT [see my 10th Sep post] because I remembered you told me you just couldn’t bring yourself, [who could? lol] to poo in the jungle -- anyways all the best!

* nephews and nieces

Monday, December 12, 2005

Pergi Mu Tuan...

I was re-reading Seamus Heaney's Beowulf when suddenly this pang of shame came to me. I've forgotten all about the man who was much closer to home than Heaney ever was with his masterful translation of the Anglo-Saxon epic tradition Beowulf.


A night like this deserves a reading on one of Masuri's sublime poems.

Waktu Dipanggil

mengusik hati ni
boleh mungkinnya beralih
kehidupan dari dunia beralih
kehidupan dari dunia sini
ke dunia lain yang telah tertulis

bagaimana mahu menahu
masa muka yang bukan miliku
mementukan entah kapan
kau berangkat meninggalkan bumi
alam yang bakal tinggal di rumah

mengigat dan memikir
otakmu makin fakir
tak satu pun mungkin mencungkil
erti dari peralihan yang bakal menampil

begini saja - baik-baik kau di sini
sementara bernafas bertingkah diri;
waktu bila kau bakal dipanggil
nantikan saja dengan rasa diri kerdil.

Masuri SN
[1927 - 2005]

Fantastic Break and Canon in D

The time has come for me to leave the workplace -- for a week at least, because starting tomorrow I'm attending a course on ISO Lead Auditor and won't be back in the office till 20 Dec 2005. I've been mulling on this for quite a bit now and I certainly welcome the change of pace. Even though one has to take and pass the examination at the end of the course, in a twisted sense -- I still view this as a fantastic break. C'est la vie.

On a more niggling matter, I'm afraid I won't have the time to write something for the magazine. Much of this week has been originally planned for research but I've yet to propose a concrete story idea to the editor.

I've also started to learn Pachelbel's Canon in D on the guitar. I finally got the score I like from the Internet and I have decided to go for that rather than Beethoven's Fur Elise. These are indeed commonplace classical tunes but the guitar transcription evokes a different story, emotion and texture sound experience altogether. Having said all these, boy, my sight reading sure sucks!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

One Love One Life

You live your life to the best and the fullest that you can. Now I've no idea what is the best and the fullest, because all I know is that I'm trying to survive in this world that is increasingly cruel and incomprehensible. I'm just another entity waiting for his next butterfly effect that may have already started in another part of the world. I always ask this of myself -- what is my consequence and the end of me? Though I've been evading this, I think I know -- it's probably the hardcore individualism in me -- where I'm a fierce believer in the primary importance of the individual, the virtues of self-reliance and personal independence.

I'm fed-up actually, I'm fed-up because I'm habouring too much expectations of what is the right thing to do in life - by society designs. I could admonish social norms and convention but I'm not defiant nor am I living on the periphery mind you -- I just wish I wasn't conditioned this way. That's all. That it took me so many years to realise and correct the wrongs in my life, is indeed a rather bitter thing to accept.

By the age of 12 or earlier, you're already in the system. You're expected to finish secondary school, you' re expected to finish your A levels. Then it's off to NS, then you continue with the paper chase. Bless you if you decide to go another path because chances are you already knew in your hearts of hearts what you want in life. But if you were like me, you'd have to work for a couple of years to make it out there on your own. Marriage? Lol! That's another issue altogether.

I could've just snap and went berserk in the mind, but I'm not, I can't. And sometimes I hate it when I'm in this thought process, this existential streak stupor. It's not healthy!

Sigh... A Sunday entry deserves a Sunday treatment.

I'm in the system for too long now and I've spent numerous times separating myself based on the size of my paycheck, the job that I hold, the colour of my skin, the friends that I keep, the heritage I come from, my physical shape and inner beauty and ugliness, and the God I believe in. There was a time when I viewed all these as a whole. But I guess holding on to that is impossible because if you did you might as well be a child all your lifetime. Only Death is the ultimate release. Then again that's not quite the end of the journey, is it? I shan't go there, because it's so fcuking tedious. But what I'm going to say is this -- We are all part of each other. We all come from the same place and we all go to Him when we die. How's that for creationism huh?

Saturday, December 10, 2005


You know I can stand the sight of blood because I used to help out in the Korban rites during * Eidul Adha. I'm not the squirmish type - but when I bloghopped to it's a different thing altogether. Dammit.

It's a professional link for periodontal disease control and dental implantation. Kudos to this guy for making this topic as direct and clinical as possible and in the most gruesome manner.

Brush your teeth often and brush them right folks! And remember to visit your friendly dentist. Lol!

* Hari Raya Haji

Wednesday, December 07, 2005


Though I've heard of this movie and even played the Atari game [I'm so old school right..] I never had the chance to see previous versions of King Kong especially the one which has Jessica Lange in it. [Images of Kong scaling the Empire State Building and Lange screaming at the top of her voice still persist] Perhaps this one by Peter Jackson will do it for me as I exorcise this fascination once and for all.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

You're A Waste of My Time!

I'm here to facilitate, NOT be a fcuking nanny. You're a complete waste of my time, when I had to remind you of the


Monday, December 05, 2005

A Cool Monday Night Entry

Because I think it's about to rain and I'm a walking meteorological being.

After months of waiting the article I wrote finally came about. Well actually I'm kind of blase about this as I no longer feel the same excitement I used to have but my friends have been asking this for quite some time now.

I interviewed some contacts on their SOHO businesses and that story has kinda taught me a thing or two on passion - something which I'm really lacking nowadays. These people have worked really hard to setup and do what they really like and believe in. I hope the magazine circulation can give whatever exposure that's due on them. Auw shucks... ain't I a good person?

On a more stressin' note I forgot to wish happy birthday to my boss. Don't feel too good about this because he remembered mine last August. Oh dear.... I think I'll make it up tomorrow.

Terribly alone at home. All family members are overseas - HKG to be more specific. Times like these I feel much happier doing office work but who am I kidding? At times, there is so much nonsense at the workplace too.

Today someone commented in jest that life is unfair because it seemed to her that I could eat with reckless abandonment but not get fat. I nullified that unfairness by telling her that I'm a rubbish bin - accepting all kinds of food only to have my comeuppance later on in life.

While we're still on food, dinner tonight was Kway Teow noodles with loads of F&N Ice-cream soda. There's plenty of that; where it come from - Hari Raya stocks. I could chug and chug on soft drinks all night long. But I'm worried.

I'm worried because I'm running out of clean socks to wear. Now that's a real issue.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Oxygen Tank

December is here. I used to change down to a lower gear in terms of productivity since the year-end holidays are just around the corner. Unfortunately my work schedules nowadays aren't very forgiving. I guess Sipadan can wait till the next diving season. Gone are my diving buddies since I come to work at this place and it is so hard to know people of the same interest. I've been going around asking but to no avail. Maybe I've not searched hard enough or maybe I approached the wrong people, I don't know.

Clear waters and the seabreeze.

KNN, Ed. Lol! If you're reading this. I blame you for introducing this sport to me and all the thrills of underwater sense of wonderment. Then again I have to thank you, too, for it brought a wealth of amazing experience to my life.