Saturday, October 24, 2015

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Deraman Part 2

"Come on now. Your turn is up! We don't have all day." The man donning in kebaya ensemble urged nonchalantly.

"Relax, Manisha. I haven't finish doing her hair. The bun is not ready, it must be as big as her head you know. She must look perfect tonight, right?" another skinny man in a tight 'Marilyn Monroe' imprinted t-shirt retorted lip pouchingly.

"Don't give me that crap! It's your fault who came late. I don't give a damn whether you are dating a datuk's son or whatever, I want her finish in 5 minutes!" yelled Manisha twice his previous tone. The skinny man stunned and one of his rib must have fractured as per aura of Manisha's tantrum. If it was not because of the defeaning musics of Barbra Streisand all over the abandoned warehouse, the audience out there must have contemplating a big fight back stage. His voice was one of the kind. Everybody in the industry knew the voice too well. In fact, Senah knew it too, only she had to learn it the hard way. She had to learn it by mere incident. She never thought in a million years that she would had involved in this part of drama let alone to be the sole character of the show. Never.

It was a prank by her friends. She recalled the other day just right after she was heading home from the Al-Quran circle class at surau Kampung Berembang. Everybody was talking behind her and the chuckling annoyed her very much. Senah could tell something was up but she couldn't figure it out. As the eldest daughter of a widowed Tok Empat, the time was consuming her. There were infinity of exiguous time for a social call. She had no friends except her small brothers and Limah. Limah was the only one who being nice to her despite the hatred from other people on her thanks to Mak Joyah. Limah was the one who came and handing over some rendang and biscuits once in a while. Not that she could not buy them on her own but the comfort of a friend is way too soothing. Senah missed her mother. If only her mother was still alive, none of this would had happened to her. Sometimes, she felt as if she could just leave the mephitic kitchen to join the happening muster at Limah's parent brick staircase once again but she was afraid. Afraid of something in the past that she could never ripped off of her mind.

Usually, during its peak all the seven steps of the staircase would be occupied by sets of woman settling in a uniquely order manner. The story tellers who also known as the elders were given the first class seats which were the first step of the stair from the ground. Well, it was not any given seat per se, but it was rather a mutual understanding between them to set up the co-ordination so that the story teller would have the ample space to tell stories (mostly vicious gossips) uninterrupted. As for the upper benchers, they would happily scrutinizing for louse on heads of one step down seaters while listening to the prattling and all.

Senah found this activity was rather disgusting and one day out of curiosity she sneaked out of the house to join the group. A brilliant idea popped up in her mind. Instead of sitting upstairs and had to do the gross thing she wouldn't do, she might as well sit somewhere she didn't have to do such thing. What a clever girl, she whispered to herself. Smile engulfing her blotchy face. But, in the god's love, the self admiring was not long as she found herself being banned from the club forever. She cursed herself. Such a naive girl. She sat on the very spot of Mak Joyah's, the living legend of detractor who would pick his own husband to tale about. From then on, not only Mak Joyah would rolled her eyes every time she passed her but came to the habit of adjourning the staircase meeting by spreading execration upon the poor Senah.

But, Senah never took anything to her heart. She knew for a fact that after a while all the slanders and trash talks would diminished. And, she also knew when they had a more spicy issue they would forget about her. She kept her prayers and above all she secretly prayed for her to be found with a prince charming and get married. Sadly, the village had yet to have a new spice to talk about. Therefore, she must hold on for a little while with Mak Joyah's world war. What Senah didn't know, the latter part of her prayer was currently undertaking its course and the destination was not that far.

"Hey, why are you still waiting there? The show is about to start and you need to be on stage now!" Manisha grunted again this time his hands on the waist. And, once again everybody knew with that demeanor he will kick anything that came in his way.

Senah was so disappointed with Limah. How could a friend did this to her. Senah felt betrayed. She never knew the decision to go to the warehouse was actually a trick. She trusted Limah very much. Senah was forced to do the thing that could bring up her father's wrath. Senah had no choice. She walked on the runway sheepishly. If only the nerve was visible, she bet everybody in the warehouse would had fainted because of it. She didn't know how long had she been on the stage. Last thing Senah could remember was the metal crown had already clipped on her thick hair bun. No diamonds whatsoever, just a plain metal crown. Manisha must have taken it from a garbage center or somewhere. She won it. She won the Ratu Kebaya contest!

As Senah struggling with her mix feeling of should her winning deserved to be celebrated or not, her eyes were fixated onto a manly figure at the corner of the stage. Her heart stumped. Her mind flattered. But, it was not long when suddenly, a sharp blow to the warehouse door startled everybody in the warehouse. Several man with white prayer cap came forth shouted 'Haram.. Haram!'. The crowd was scattered in chaos. Senah was almost fainted when she saw a fierce-looking man marching into the crowd. It was her father!

Senah was certain that her father didn't know she was there let alone participating in the contest and won it. She must find a way to get out of the crowd. She glared at the corner of the stage. No body was there. Perhaps, the man that she saw just now might freaked out and ran away. Senah started sprinting as if there was no other day tomorrow. She looked back only to notice that somebody had chasing her. Thinking of that could be her father she started to double the speed. She was thankful that she used to be a prowess sprinter in her old days of primary school. Mr Chong must be very proud of her if he saw her running this fast. Senah grinned. Her grin ceased prematurely when she stumbled upon the enormous root trees.

"Damn it," she griped holding on the crown on her head. She had made a decision. No matter what happens she will cling on to the crown. Even if her father came out of the bush. Senah waited. The pain of the fall sipped in her sensory up to the brain little by little. Suddenly, a black shadow came out of nowhere approximated her distance. The shadow gave its hand to Senah. Senah took the hand and came closer to the shadow. Under the faded moon light Senah could see the face that she prayed for a long time. It wasn't like what Senah expected. His face was scarred and blotchy. Never came close to Senah's prince charming fairy tale. Nevertheless, Senah could feel a sense of dejavu with this man. He was the man at the corner of the stage and he was DERAMAN...

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Again, I bore the readers!

I attracted to one article I found in FB shared by a friend of mine. It was a full page of a primary/secondary education chronicle on teachers over work and several other chores. What interest me the most was when I came to the 7th paragraph where the writer deliberated on students class segregation accounting primarily on grades achieved from examinations.

Well, it sounds like one hell of a system where teachers can teach in a peace of mind in different cohort of students response. Good students are segregated from the not-so-bright students on sole reason to facilitate the knowledge transfers. As a matter of fact, I could not be more agree to this implementation as long as it applies to primary and lower secondary education. Apropos, this system should have not be implemented in upper secondary education specifically when it comes to choose which stream shall the students undertake for his/her next two years in secondary school. Be it biological science or art or whatever, for me it is neither up to the teachers nor the results who has the prerogative to determine of whether 6A's are going to art and 7A's are going to science.

This is a carrier we are talking about. And, it's definitely not just another transition to finish the compulsory 11 years of education. By still implementing this system it is not just show how grotesquery our education is but furthermore it ruins the students aspiration of becoming whoever he/she wanted to be. If only they introduce an interview to evaluate the students tendency and place them in class where they feel comfortable with, that would be a good start. We never know when is the individual kick start. Some may develop after years of education but let's not punish them by not giving a chance to them to study what they love the most.

I couldn't help myself to relate to this issue. It is always in my most vivid memory of how I almost slipped to the drain when I was placed in physical science merely because my grades were not qualified me to enter the biology science class. Not that I hate the class but it was just the fact that I hate numbers in which I had no choice but to study accounting. Of course, as a growing young man who didn't have a clue of what was in outside world other than what had been told by teachers and parents, my perception towards achieving good grades and becoming somebody in the future was not the first thing in my list. Well, I wouldn't be fair if I speak on behalf of my other friends because some of them were really good. In fact, few of those could memorize some of the complicated terms that were used in medicine contemplating one day they would become a neuro-surgeon if not a robust money making private general practitioner. Hat off, they are all do, not to mention the FB status nowadays that are full with medical descriptions and lengthy discussions on how to manage this patients and that disease. 

Well, back to my story, although I had no intention at all of becoming a doctor or anything related to health personnel I had a strong inclination on science subjects especially biology (not physics for sure!). Still, because of this education system restriction I couldn't enjoy what I wanted to do the most. Until one fine day I got summoned by the class teacher of the biology science class which also happened to be a math teacher, Mrs. M telling of my intention to enter the biology science class. Bear in mind that during the time, there was only one biology science class in which belonged to cohort of the most elitist and brainy students. And, in the most gracefully manner one could ever be she told to me to forget about biology and try to learn accounts for the sake of my future. I was shocked but as a student who has been taught for 4 years to respect the teachers and all I nodded and went away. I wasn't cry though but since my father passed I never had this kind of disappointment and sad all at one time.

But, the disappointment was not long as after a week I got the news that there will a second biology class opened for students who aspired to enter the biology science class. And, again I was called by Mrs. M only to ask me not to appeal to enter her class and instead enter the second biology class. This time something struck in me and it occurred as if she didn't want me in her class at all. Perhaps, and I hope I was wrong, the reason was that she didn't want me to drop the good graphs that have always been and continue to go on in her class. An outlier was indeed something that had to be dismissible.

So, as where I see I stand right now I am still far from achieving my dreams. But, I am grateful that I know I'm on the right track. I pursued my biology pathway regardless of the advise to forget it. I hope someday the system will change and I pray it's not too late affecting my child or my grandchild future.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Obedient Wives Club

Yesterday I wrote about lady's coach in Malaysia. However, that was not the whole point. My purpose of writing in the first place was to highlight several points during the debate between Marina Mahathir and Dr Azlina (Chair of the Obedient Wives Club, OWC). In the early stage of OWC establishment, I was quite skeptical with its agenda. Masking by the highlights made by tabloids and news I was certain that this club was delirious if not an oddball looking for a goofy publicity. Well, for what it matters only the aberrant senile would say you have to be a first class prostitute to your spouse out of the blue.

Firstly, prostitute is a taboo especially in Malay's community. People don't always talk about it let alone to openly discuss it in the media. Whatever subject it has with prostitute will always be preceded with obnoxious prejudice. Secondly, as regard to the prejudice earlier on, the majority of the readers will only contemplate on the first picture of the sentence. The minds are fixating on 'you have to be a first class prostitute' and directly excogitate to the panoramic view of Lorong Haji Taib. What they don't see is the subject of this matter, the spouse or the husband. For this, I give all credits to the media. The arts of writing has been so tremendously efficient these days that people no longer need a spell to hypnotize.

I'm sharing a radio interview on BFM between Marina, Dr Azlina and Dr Farouk. From what it seems Dr Azlina has good points on her side. I wish for her to be more articulate to answer vicious questions from the liberal Marina. And, I believe Marina should show her professional in handling this matter. The constant exchanging smirky looks between her and the other guy was not helping.
Enjoy watching!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Salam Maal Hijrah

It's 3 am Belgian time and the eyes are still refuse to make peace. To my left lies a petite body that belongs to a little guy who has zero tolerance towards listlessness in his day out. And, to my right lies a womanly curve that of course, belongs to my one and only wife. Both has two things in common; they are in deep slumber land sleeping like a log and in self warming fetal dispose. We all had quite a day yesterday, engaging almost 2/3 of our time in train. From Leuven to Brussels to Atomium, well I must admit, it was a tiring journey. Even Chan-Chan managed to score a nap accessorized with spilling drool all over the seat. Luckily for us the train was not full house. There were few spaces to move around although it was hard to sustain equilibrium in the shaky train.

I saw people hopped on and off the train as the train made several stops at the allocated stations. Some were decent enough to punch the train ticket into the slot machine. But, many who didn't. Perhaps, their destination was just a stop away, I was thinking self-justified. So, I assumed it was routine if not a tradition. Everything went smoothly without hiccups. There were hardly any harassment nor riots at least on this particular day. Something that a bit strange to see in KL's LRT. A total cap size I would say. Perverts, pick pockets and all sorts of criminal are under one LRT's roof. Leave alone the intolerable codgers who has no value whatsoever towards the elderly and pregnant ladies.

And then came the Ministry of Woman Affairs fighting over the must of having a special coach exclusive for woman. All other feminists association rolled along bickering about the same issue of woman's inferior. Sister in Islam slamming polygamy and Marina condemning the OWC members for being sex whores to their husband. Tupperware party is no longer discussing about Tupperware and instead brainstorming on how to equalize woman in men's world as if woman in Malaysia has never been allowed to go out of the house. Then, why on earth asking for woman's coach if woman can do everything on their own?

It's a never ending sad issue. In Islam as the rule of thumb men are the Imam and the leader. It is always like that. And bear in mind, by abiding to this rule it does not mean one is obeying to the principle of dictatorship. In dictatorship, the rules have no power against it. The rules have to be bent in necessary to follow the command of the dictator. This is of course a total misleading from Islamic view. In Islam the leader is still bound to the principles and rules. There are procedures and laws for leaders who are proved to be inadequate in his duty as a leader. The same applies to woman whom the husband is a HIV positive. In such case the conjugation is not allowed and the husband cannot practice his power as a leader to make his wife to follow his command. And the wife has all the support from the Islamic authority to protect her right. Isn't it wonderful?

Therefore, to answer this question, everybody must understand the roles they are playing. If it takes to come out with a club or association, be it. As long as it does not quibbling about religion and always on the rail of Al-Quran and As-Sunnah, go ahead. No body will stop you. And if it does, believe me, you are on the safe side.
Salam Maal Hijrah to all. I pray for more good deeds for this year around.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Task for Myself

Whoahh.. as I was gobbling the old archives of my blog, I noticed I had almost 8 drafts that I never published. So, as a task for this month I imperatively assign myself to publish all of them before the new year comes. Bear in mind, the actual events may have taken place long prior the date of publication.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

New Life in Belgie

I'm supposed to do my scoring now but instead, I'm blogging. Not that I'm almost finish or what but the temptation of doing other things outweighs the home works. Plus, with an autopsy to attend to tomorrow, I should have prepared for something. Ahh.. Screw them!

As I approaching my week-3 in Belgium I sense my skill of adapting has evolved on its own. I am no longer craving for nasi lemak or teh tarik. No more post-skyping tears although the frequency were obviously not that significant. And, of course, I am proud that after so many years being a brat waiting at the table to be served I am literally behind the stove now. Well, I wouldn't call it a stove. In fact, I have no idea what is it call. For that, to make ease for everybody I name it 'The Thang'! (enunciated as black rapper's sounds out 'The Thang'!) It's a horizontal double glazing glass with a heater underneath it operating entirely with electric. The design is rather small. With one medium-sized Tefal pan I couldn't place anything else on it. Despite nameless, The Thang really makes my life so efficiently easy. No more fire starter or worse the gas tank!

As a matter of fact, I started cooking last week. The first two weeks were a real trouble for me. Of course, what do you expect from a 28-year-old codger with foods? It's either he eats out or having a take away and obviously for each methodology the concept is the same. HE JUST SIMPLY WON'T COOK! 
But, wait, I was in the middle of European continent and literally the accessibility to halal foods were not as if I was in Saudi Arabia or UAE where I can grab any foods with a blind towel on my face. It was so hard at first to even spotting a single onion. Then, I met several Malaysians who mostly are here for their PhD. They told me that just around the corner to the left and to the first junction on the right is the location of the asian store. So, I went. Only to learn that my leather shoes had worn as a result of excessive walk. Not to mention I lost my way 3 to 4 times looking for the sacred asian store. I was later told by a friend of mine who lives in Ghent to buy a sport shoes as he was experiencing the same fate as me during his early times in Belgium. It was indeed, the advise of a life time!

So, back to the story of spice hunting. I managed to find a the asian store, at last. Petite and mephitic. Despite the non-attractiveness the store possessed, I was so surprised that it had all the groceries that Malaysian Giant had. From the Maggi instant noodles to the Thai rice you name it they were all there. They even had plenty of lemongrass. It was just that, perhaps, due to the months of contra-banding process it had all dried up. So, as a starter I bought several basic ingredients with all hopes that I will be making something out of them. One theory that I learned from my sister-in-law who once read her doctorate in Notthingham was how to manipulate Google to the most. One way of doing it was looking for recipes on Google. She even called it the saviour of her marriage (well, I definitely need a citation for this! I think it was from my wife~ Ilham et al 2009). So, I surfed. Thinking that this would be an easy treat for me I went through several blogs that provided the recipes I was looking for. To my stunt, I was completely puzzled with almost half of the ingredients listed. Some of them described about the rempah tumis 3 beradik or 4 beradik or even 5 beradik. What the hell is rempah adik beradik? Are they really siblings? As I was blinking cluelessly at the ingredients listed by Cik Jah Chef Kampung and my ingredients on the shelves my mind was slowly resorting to bread and butter dinner again.

Yaiy, I guess I have to stop for now. Read up, read up! Later folks.