Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The New English Word

Just received this email today. Don't know how long it's been circulating but I thought it's absolutely hilarious.

New word
There are possible plans underway to include a new word to the Oxford and Webster in their 2009 dictionary:
badawi [baa-daa-wee] (noun): To start something full of promise but
end in disappointment, failure and/or disaster.

Eg:
'I'm trusting you to perform this task well; don't do a badawi, ok?'
'Whatever I do, I will always find a way to badawise it.'
‘France badawied their Euro 2008 campaign. England pre-badawied
theirs, while Italy were guilty of over-badawification.’



Thanks Chubby, for this gem of a junk mail.

Friday, June 20, 2008

What Goes Around Comes Around

From time to time, when I was out of the office on business, I do take some personal “Sue-time” for an hour or two whenever I have the chance. I don’t feel particularly guilty about it because I was already outside and it was only for a short time.

Yesterday, unlike the usually spontaneous decision to go AWOL, I actually planned one.

I went to a certain government office to meet a certain government official. As I was hoping, he was in a meeting and wouldn’t be available for another hour. Exactly as I planned it the night before, I immediately left to run a few personal errands on office time.

In my head I was thinking, if anybody asked, yes I did go to see him but he was in a meeting for the longest time and so we didn’t manage to meet up. There would be no lying through my teeth as that is the absolute truth.

So I left and headed to the highway. Unfortunately for me, I missed a turn and ended up on the wrong highway. Later, I got out at a certain exit which I thought would lead me back to where I wanted to go but instead I ended up in some housing estate with very little signboards and hundreds of unbearably slow traffic lights.

At this point, I already realized that I was lost, but determined not to admit it, I didn’t bother to ask for direction and continued going around in circles. I managed later to get back onto that unfamiliar highway again and got off another exit only to have the same thing happening all over again at a different housing estate.

What the ….?

To cut a very long and boring story short, I was lost for about what seemed like eternity before I managed to wiggle my way out of the traffic jam that seemed to be everywhere, and back to familiar places. By then, it was almost 1 pm.

Suffice to say, I didn’t have time to run those errands, and only managed to grab a quick tapau lunch before headed straight to office, bummed out and so freakin' irritated.

Small matter actually, but it got me thinking.

This has happened a few times before. Whenever I’m up to mischief on a whim, I get away with it. But if I do plan it somehow, thereby having the bad intention, something will turn out wrong. In this case, my eyes were blurred. My mind was blurred. I got lost where I never thought I would. It cost me precious time, it cost me precious petrol, it cost me unnecessary toll.

I couldn’t help thinking that it is karma. I’m sure Sharon Stone would agree with me.

My own mother would agree with that too. The punishment was swift, she’d say.

To some people, including my mother, when bad things happen to bad people, then it must be ‘bala’ (punishment from God). If the same thing happens to good people, then it is a 'dugaan' (a test of one's faith).

The thing is, how do you decide which is bala and which is dugaan? Why, by judging who is good and who is bad, of course!

This is where I’m so bloody pissed off every single time-- because when someone pulled an Artful Dodger on me, when I got a flat tyre, when I lost all my money, when I got sick, all of those are deemed by my mother as bala.

Again, WHAT THE …?

There is a concept of “What goes around comes around” in Islam, and that the Quran has mentioned this in a few verses. But I doubt that God intended for people to use this concept to judge other people’s misfortune so swiftly.

Indeed, many people find it so easy to pass judgment on others and so readily label a tragedy as bala, thereby indirectly labeling the victims as bad people. The Acheh earthquake and the resulting tsunami, the flood in Johor, Hurricane Katrina in the States, Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar, those are just to name a few. In fact, a few miscalculated steps causing one to slip and fall on the sidewalk can also be a bala. Everything bad that happens, is considered bala. Until such things happen to themselves that is, then it’s dugaan.

When Sharon Stone said what she said about the earthquake in China and the Tibetan people, she said what a lot of people who are pro-Tibet were thinking but never said out loud because it is utterly ridiculous.

Of course, as much as I don’t agree with her, I actually applaud her for knowing what’s going on in this world, as opposed to Mariah Carey’s infamous blunder when asked what she thought of the (then) recent demise of the King of Jordan. “It is a great loss to the world of sports” or something like that was what she said, referring of course to Michael Jordan, the basketball legend, who actually is still alive and kicking till this very day!

Anyway, there were a lot of angry reactions from China and all over the world about what Sharon Stone said. She was eventually forced to apologize and I think the issue has since died. Whether or not it was bad karma we will never know. But she wasn’t the first person with such ideas and neither will she be the last.

‘What goes around comes around’ is a concept predominant in any society, traditional or modern. Heck, Justin Timberlake even sings about it! It is not a concept that will go away in the near future. It is also the concept behind the words "Padan muka!" that we use so often.

Personally, I do believe in fate and destiny and that there is such a thing as bala. But I don’t agree with us mere mortals to be in the position to judge what is bala and what is not, thereby judging who is bad and who is not. What happens, happens. Let’s just leave it at that and not judge one another.

Having said that, I know that as I am sitting here rubbing my sore neck which has been torturing me since Monday, I realize what my mother would say if I were to tell her about my stiff neck—it’s bala. No doubt. Although I have no idea what I did wrong this time, as in any other time.

And oh, I also note that the next time I want to skip work, I shouldn’t plan it. I’ll just be spontaneous. That way, without the mala fide or bad intention, hopefully, karma won't get to me :-)

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

"I'm With Stupid"

Have you ever dealt with people so stupid and so stubborn you just want to smack ‘em in the head and throw their things straight into the longkang?

I’m having the worst possible time dealing with these idiots. I don’t know from which hole did they crawled out from. They pretend like they know everything yet they keep asking stupid questions and make all sorts of stupid remarks, and demand stupid things that I obviously cannot give them.

I have been to their office a number of times in the past couple of weeks trying to sort things out, but they have been very very difficult, and I’m getting more and more exasperated by the minute. I know I’m supposed to be professional and all but can you blame me if I have a screaming match with them every now and then?

This morning I received a letter from them which smacks of arrogance and sheer stupidity. They have resorted to writing letters now instead of meetings and discussions since all of us can’t seem to be civilized about it. I am fuming, and therefore I am taking my time replying since I do not want to write something nasty (which I am bound to do if I reply right away) and aggravate the already delicate situation.

What can I say? I have business with them, so I have to bear with them for a while longer.

But in the meantime, can I just shoot someone?

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Random Ramblings Not Worth Reading #10

There is this thing called Caller ID. No cell phone would be complete without it. It helps you be prepared of what’s to come-- whether it your Momma calling to scold you, or your boss calling to tell you to come to work on a Sunday, or your spouse calling to check up on you-- once you see their numbers on the screen, you brace yourselves and you know exactly whether to answer or how to handle the call.

It’s convenient. It enables us to screen calls. It’s even a life-saver.

Then there’s also this thing called a private number, where the caller’s phone number is withheld and we are left to guess who is calling.

I hate those stupid private numbers. The callers want to find me wherever I am, yet they don’t want me to know where they’re calling from. It’s so freakin’ rude. If I want to answer a phone call blindly, I won’t have Caller ID!

So, to whoever it is who has been calling me non-stop since Sunday, STOP WITHHOLDING YOUR NUMBER OR STOP CALLING, YOU STUPID COW!!!!!!

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Everybody’s still angry about the fuel price hike. Moi included. But I don’t know what to say anymore. It is so ridiculously high right now that I’m seriously considering finding a job within walking distance from my home.

The rebate being promised is such a meager sum, like we say it in Malay, “lekat celah gigi pun tak cukup”. And now they have confirmed that it is not even an annual rebate!!! So, we won’t even have anything to try to lekat celah our gigi next year!

Bagero!!


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I was involved in 2 minor accidents 2 months ago. One of the culprits paid the damages a few days after I told her the amount. It wasn’t so swift, but it was not delayed for weeks either. So, I’m pleased with that.

As for the other culprit, the damage she had done was so little and the cost minimal, but the fact remains that I suffered losses because of her, so she still had to pay nonetheless. I told her the cost and she didn’t reply my SMS. I sent a reminder 2 weeks later and she replied saying she noted and will pay the sum. However, till yesterday, still no money came in for me. It was 2 months after the accident.

I didn’t want to make a big deal out of it since the amount is so little but she did hit my car, so I couldn’t just let her get away with it. So I sent this SMS last night, “2 months since u hit my car, 1 ½ months since I asked you to pay RMXXX and 1 month since u promised to pay. Tell me Ms. XXX, are u an honest person?”

10 minutes lapsed while she was probably fuming, then came the reply, “Yes I am. Give me your a/c no and I will bank the money in” (paraphrasing).

And today, she SMS-ed saying money has been banked in. (I haven’t checked my account yet but I believe it’s in). There, there,… that wasn’t so hard was it?

So, friends, the next time someone is dilly-dallying from paying you something, just question their honesty. Don’t scold, don’t hound, don’t chase, don’t abuse-- just question their honesty. Chances are, they’re going to be embarrassed into paying, just to prove that they’re honest. Unless of course, they really are liars and cheats who do not mind being thought of as liars and cheats. So, that’s another story.

Monday, June 02, 2008

The Tale of The Bladder Queen

I drove back to Alor Setar on Friday night to send Mom’s new Indonesian maid to her. This girl is from Jawa Timur, so the slang is a bit thick and she has difficulty understanding a lot of what I was saying, although I could understand her perfectly well.

The thing is, with the influx of Indonesian movies and songs invading our airwaves since decades ago, we Malaysians tend to understand the various Indonesian dialects much easier than Indonesians can understand our Malaysian dialects. So I kept forgetting that Siti may be a bit blurred whenever I open my mouth to say something.

On the PLUS highway, I stopped at Tapah to freshen up and asked her :-

“Siti mau ke tandas?”

“Nggak mau.”

Ok. So I went by myself and then we continued the journey.

Later, I stopped at Bukit Gantang, asked her again, "Siti mau ke tandas?", and again she answered me, "Nggak mau". This baffled me a great deal since the air-cond was rather cold and she did drink half a bottle of mineral water since the start of the journey.

I had already gone twice and she hadn’t at all. So, I thought she must have a bladder the size of a Ducati fuel tank or something. But I kept the thought to myself.

At Gurun (which is about 400 km from KL), I stopped again and asked her:-

“Siti mau ke tandas?”

“Tandas itu apa?”

“Errr… bilik air, err.. tempat cuci…err…”

Kencing??”

“Ya”

“Ya! Ya! Mauuuuu!!!”

Dang! She must’ve been holding it in since God-knows-when!!