Saturday, January 31, 2009

pix: a young monk attending free basic education provided by local monastery.
Very few Burmese can even afford basic child education.

Yolly oh Yolly

I have not gone to the office for almost a week.

A part from Chinese New Year holidays, I have not been well – cold, flu, sore throat – the lot!

I am ok, just a bit under the weather. I will be back on tract in a couple of day’s time, as soon as the course of antibiotics is completed.

Yolly came for her weekly house keeping duty.

I didn’t really want to go out while she cleans the apartment even though I could never stand the sound of a vacuum cleaner. So I fell asleep on the day bad in the living room. I probably snored at a major Rector scale too.

The sound of Yolly struggling with the key to get out of the apartment woke me up.

Half awake, I asked her:

Are you done?

Yes Sir.

I couldn’t find my wallet to pay her weekly due.

Sorry Yolly, my purse is in the car (I hope it is), and I am not well (I bet she knew that from my scruffy morning look)

Oh that’s OK sir. Next week lah.

OK, Thanks.

Yolly left the building.

A few minutes later I got an SMS from Yolly:

I was wondering, makcik ni tertinggal barang ke ?

It was pleasant to read…

“get well soon sir”


oh, did I tell you that she also:

unpacks my luggage when I return from my travels

sews my pillow or quilt cover

brought me some snacks from her Christmas holidays in the Philippines.

pix: Segarra, Ancol, Jakarta North

Friday, January 30, 2009

I personally think Kugan case has been blown way out of proportion by some parties.

OK, Kugan has been accused and hasn’t even gone through a trial yet.

Yeah, it's police brutality and all that jazz...

Agreed, he is innocent until he is proven guilty.

But do you really think he is an angel who deserves to be have a glorified funeral that cause massive traffic jam and half a dozen arrested?

Some parties, beyond doubt, have capitalized Kugan’s case for their own political or racial interest.

I am not interested in that AT ALL!

All I am interested in is, if and only if Kugan is actually a car thief (yes, I do not agree that he deserved to be beaten up by the cops), he cannot be operating alone. A syndicate is an organized crime. There is a network of people involved.

So, while you are busy parading this man to heaven / hell, there is another luxury car stolen in the city of Kuala Lumpur.

You can have a glorious funeral to bury the ikan bilis, but where is the untouchable KEPALA?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

pic: flowers from almond trees, Morocco.


Since the beginning of Facebook era I have personally noticed a couple of dramas being posted on digital walls, eventually throughout cyber-world.

I have status update of a couple who are having a fight.

I have seen, more often than not, people have use it as an escapism out of their frustration on their life, or in most cases, married life.

There all also Facebooker who wrote whatever they want on the wall without respecting ones privacy. This bunch are either not FB savvy, plain stupid or just insensitive.

I almost dropped a friend who wrote a remark on my picture in public, without considering my privacy. After a couple of emails of apologies, he is still my friend. I reckoned some people might have temporary lack of common sense after a weekend of heavy partying.

Admittedly, in my Facebook life, I have actually dropped a friend. Not so much privacy matters but more on matters pertaining to trust between close friends. I don’t consider a person who wrote something personal about my life and post it on the public note. To rub salt into the wound, some bias comment took place, out of the blue. I was pissed off, angry and disappointed.

Today, the table has turned.

Being sick, on antibiotics, I have been home.

Since I have all the time in the world, I explored my list of 200 odd Facebook friends in my profiles.

After running several search, I realized I got dropped by one of my “good friends”, whom I have known for at least 10 years, from her Facebook friends list.

I haven’t a clue why.

I was surprised, but I wasn’t sad.

I called up JJ:

Hey you know what? Ms XX dropped me from her Facebook.

JJ knows her very well.

JJ’s response was:

Let’s celebrate!

So we went for a nice lunch.

To think of it, I don’t’ think much about Ms XX. It’s her right to drop pr to add. When I t hink about it, I think I know why she dropped me and it is quite immature (for God’s sake you are going to be 40 this year!)

All I can say is:

But...... I am just an innocent bystander.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Choratchoret frequent flyers know that I am a person with 1 million things to complain about.

I think more often than not, I have a case.

I recently arrived at KLIA. I didn’t really feel like taking the ERL because I have of waiting another 20 minutes for the next. Not only that. I also hate to gamble whether there will be a taxi to take me home from Sentral to Bangsar.

ERL is HEAVEN, but KL Sentral is HELL.

So I decided to take the KLIA budget taxi.

A stable of them awaited for me at Door 3. A spanking new Proton WAJA.


The cabbie greeted me with a smile.

Bu the hospitality at the door of our country just ends there.

I only have 1 hand luggage.

The taxi driver didn’t even bother to help me with my luggage. He just pointed the boot of the car to stow it.

If I were a tourist, I would ask:

“Is this Malaysia Truly Asia hospitality?”

The GOOD thing is though, before we left the airport, the taxi driver asked me to key in the name of my apartment in the – GPS. So I keyed in the 12 alphabets represent the name of my residence.

Pressed ENTER


I like this hi-tech thing.

It reduces your interaction with the cabbie when you are not in the mood to talk or bitch about Malaysian politicians, the PM included.

Without much exchange or words between the cabbie and I, we reached the destination. The GPS confirmed it.

As the cab stopped, the driver came out and opened the boot.

All he did was pointing at my luggage with the expression on his face:

“Pick up your own freaking your own freaking luggage you dumb-ass!”

I picked up my luggage and before I left I automatically said THANK YOU.

I regretted it.

Thanks for what?

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Bon Voyage sis!

She’s my younger sister.

We used to watch our favorite cartoons and sitcom together when were kids. We had fun until all of us wer sent to boarding schools.

We used to have cats named Oren and Sarsi - because of the color of their fur. She even named ne of our cats "Krinton". Non of us (not even her) knows what it means and why.....

Life changed after that, and growing up took a shift - as life progressed as we all have to grow up some day.

We (all in the family) only met during school holidays, during breaks from boarding schools.

By then we have our own set of friends. When we got home for school holidays, we all missed our mates in school and couldn’t wait to go back to the hostels with friends who grew up in one campus for at least 5 years.

We became close again when we all graduated and have decent jobs. The glue between us of course our mom who always, without failed, cooked us nasi lemak the first day of term break at home.

She, unfortunately didn’t really have a good marriage that ended up in a divorce. It was not a bad divorce and she got the custody to “keep” my lovely niece.

About a week ago my sister left for the States to further her study.

We all went to the airport to wave her good bye.

I couldn’t hold my tears when I watched her walking hand in hand with her daughter approaching the immigration counter.

Then I realized how strong and determined my younger sister is.

In her young age (relatively) almost single handedly brings up a child with out a husband at the same time juggling her carrier and still determined to get her dream PhD.

I have always been protective over her.

After saying good bye to her, I realized how I admire and care about her.

Admire her determination.

Care about her and my niece.

For the past few days I have been getting a series of sms from her. Just as I thought, she is coping very well. Within a week she’s found a decent house (with automatic gate, she stressed) and already bought a car.

I know in 4 years time she’s going to come back with a scroll of her dreams and my niece Alyssa would experience 4 years of foreign education which no doubt will be a major part of her growing up years.

I pray for their wellbeing in a land far far away from home.

I am quite sure they will both be okay, InsyaAllah.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009


Lie #1) Israel is only targeting legitimate military sites and is seeking to protect innocent lives. Israel never targets civilians.

The Gaza Strip is one of the most densely populated pieces of property in the world. The presence of militants within a civilian population does not, under international law, deprive that population of their protected status, and hence any assault upon that population under the guise of targeting militants is, in fact, a war crime.

Moreover, the people Israel claims are legitimate targets are members of Hamas, which Israel says is a terrorist organization. Hamas has been responsible for firing rockets into Israel. These rockets are extremely inaccurate and thus, even if Hamas intended to hit military targets within Israel, are indiscriminate by nature. When rockets from Gaza kill Israeli civilians, it is a war crime.

Hamas has a military wing. However, it is not entirely a military organization, but a political one. Members of Hamas are the democratically elected representatives of the Palestinian people. Dozens of these elected leaders have been kidnapped and held in Israeli prisons without charge. Others have been targeted for assassination, such as Nizar Rayan, a top Hamas official. To kill Rayan, Israel targeted a residential apartment building. The strike not only killed Rayan but two of his wives and four of his children, along with six others. There is no justification for such an attack under international law. This was a war crime.

Other of Israel’s bombardment with protected status under international law have included a mosque, a prison, police stations, and a university, in addition to residential buildings.

Moreover, Israel has long held Gaza under siege, allowing only the most minimal amounts of humanitarian supplies to enter. Israel is bombing and killing Palestinian civilians. Countless more have been wounded, and cannot receive medical attention. Hospitals running on generators have little or no fuel. Doctors have no proper equipment or medical supplies to treat the injured. These people, too, are the victims of Israeli policies targeted not at Hamas or legitimate military targets, but directly designed to punish the civilian population.

Lie #2) Hamas violated the cease-fire. The Israeli bombardment is a response to Palestinian rocket fire and is designed to end such rocket attacks.

Israel never observed the cease-fire to begin with. From the beginning, it announced a “special security zone” within the Gaza Strip and announced that Palestinians who enter this zone will be fired upon. In other words, Israel announced its intention that Israeli soldiers would shoot at farmers and other individuals attempting to reach their own land in direct violation of not only the cease-fire but international law.

Despite shooting incidents, including ones resulting in Palestinians getting injured, Hamas still held to the cease-fire from the time it went into effect on June 19 until Israel effectively ended the truce on November 4 by launching an airstrike into Gaza that killed five and injured several others.

Israel’s violation of the cease-fire predictably resulted in retaliation from militants in Gaza who fired rockets into Israel in response. The increased barrage of rocket fire at the end of December is being used as justification for the continued Israeli bombardment, but is a direct response by militants to the Israeli attacks.

Israel's actions, including its violation of the cease-fire, predictably resulted in an escalation of rocket attacks against its own population.

Lie #3) Hamas is using human shields, a war crime.

There has been no evidence that Hamas has used human shields. The fact is, as previously noted, Gaza is a small piece of property that is densely populated. Israel engages in indiscriminate warfare such as the assassination of Nizar Rayan, in which members of his family were also murdered. It is victims like his dead children that Israel defines as “human shields” in its propaganda. There is no legitimacy for this interpretation under international law. In circumstances such as these, Hamas is not using human shields, Israel is committing war crimes in violation of the Geneva Conventions and other applicable international law.

Lie #4) Arab nations have not condemned Israel’s actions because they understand Israel’s justification for its assault.

The populations of those Arab countries are outraged at Israel’s actions and at their own governments for not condemning Israel’s assault and acting to end the violence. Simply stated, the Arab governments do not represent their respective Arab populations. The populations of the Arab nations have staged mass protests in opposition to not only Israel's actions but also the inaction of their own governments and what they view as either complacency or complicity in Israel's crimes.

Moreover, the refusal of Arab nations to take action to come to the aid of the Palestinians is not because they agree with Israel’s actions, but because they are submissive to the will of the US, which fully supports Israel. Egypt, for instance, which refused to open the border to allow Palestinians wounded in the attacks to get medical treatment in Egyptian hospitals, is heavily dependent upon US aid, and is being widely criticized within the population of the Arab countries for what is viewed as an absolute betrayal of the Gaza Palestinians.

Even Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has been regarded as a traitor to his own people for blaming Hamas for the suffering of the people of Gaza. Palestinians are also well aware of Abbas' past perceived betrayals in conniving with Israel and the US to sideline the democratically elected Hamas government, culminating in a counter-coup by Hamas in which it expelled Fatah (the military wing of Abbas' Palestine Authority) from the Gaza Strip. While his apparent goal was to weaken Hamas and strengthen his own position, the Palestinians and other Arabs in the Middle East are so outraged at Abbas that it is unlikely he will be able to govern effectively.

Lie #5) Israel is not responsible for civilian deaths because it warned the Palestinians of Gaza to flee areas that might be targeted.

Israel claims it sent radio and telephone text messages to residents of Gaza warning them to flee from the coming bombardment. But the people of Gaza have nowhere to flee to. They are trapped within the Gaza Strip. It is by Israeli design that they cannot escape across the border. It is by Israeli design that they have no food, water, or fuel by which to survive. It is by Israeli design that hospitals in Gaza have no electricity and few medical supplies with which to treat the injured and save lives. And Israel has bombed vast areas of Gaza, targeting civilian infrastructure and other sites with protected status under international law. No place is safe within the Gaza Strip.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

I desperately needed some H2O from the bar

EP, our regular bartender who is also the best Long Island Iced Tea concoctionist, was no where to be found.

I had time to be friendly while waiting to get some service, or perhaps its a new year thing .... I threw a remark to a total (not perfect) stranger...

Is that a glass of Long Island Iced Tea you are having


But you have to stir it. The bottom is where the good stuff is.

Oh yes, the good stuff is always down there