Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Manu Zikoi

Monday, August 28, 2006:
"You have the gift of gab in multiple languages, and that could benefit your love life and career prospects. Make an effort to learn a new lingo right now, and soon you'll be parlez vous-ing in whatever dialect you wish."
I wish! In any case, a weekend in KK (Sabah) got me into the Kadazan/Dusun lingo and the status of the Bobohizan, the High Priestess who has the monopoly over spiritual knowledge and healing power in the Good Old Days of the Goddess! Well, any woman would consider herself lucky to be drinking rice wine, dancing the sumazau with the enemies' skulls tied to her waist and chanting the mantra than be made a human sacrifice like Huminodun, the beautiful daugther of Kinoringan (the God of the Earth and his wife, the Goddess of the Sky), who epitomises the Spirit of Rice, to end the Great Famine. It is believed that all kinds of primary food are derived from different parts of the poor girl's body, i.e. rice from her white flesh, chillies from her red blood, ginger from her dainty fingers, onions from her lovely hair, corn from her pearly teeth and coconut from her pretty head.
Datuk Douglas C. Primus Sikayun om Datin Sa'adah A. Aziz do magahap - do mooi tindapou om umunsikou doid kalamzan do pisavaan di tanak dagari i (cordially invite you to share in the wedding celebration of their daughter)
The High Society of KK and the High Courts of Malaya, Sabah and Sarawak were very well-represented at the lively wedding celebration of Jihan Xylia and Mohd Izham last Saturday night at the Shang, Tg Aru. The wife of the President of UPKO, YB Tan Sri Bernard G. Dompok, the wife of the Chief Judge of the High Court in Sabah and Sarawak, the Right Honourable Dato' Richard Malanjum, and The Honourable Datuk Syed Ahmad Helmy bin Syed Ahmad with Datin Jelita, who wowed the guests with her soulful rendition of Summertime. The bride and groom, family and friends eagerly took to the dance floor to do the sumazau, and some latin steps later on in the nite ...
Sunday saw ISA, NIA and I at the Gaya Flea Market, the Sabah Museum and the Tg Aru beach. ISA's college mate, Henry, whose grandfather founded the museum, and his beloved Michelle, whose grandfather founded the KK race course (!), played gracious guides. Somehow, the Add Image feature repeatedly refused to cooperate with photo posting - must be the curse of the "Mambangs", Bah!

Friday, August 25, 2006

The Journeying Soul

Jalan Damai->Jalan Eunos->Still Road->Telok Kurau West (Integrated) Primary School was the route I used to travel as a child, be it by cab with Mak, by bike with ABGLONG, by 'beca' (trishaw) with KAKNGAH, by bus and on foot with Bro Mal or school bus with Yat.
I was the typical (over-)protected 'last-born' child, tied to my mother's sarong, stifled under her arms, snuggled to her bosoms whenever I, or she, could. I didn't attend pre-school, so my mother had to wait at the canteen for weeks until she could finally 'wean' me off. I couldn't believe how attached I was to her, and took every opportunity to go to the washroom so I could peek at her through the shutters outside the classroom.
NIA was the total opposite - with three years of pre-school; she just strutted her stuff on her very first day to Shorewood Hills Elementary School, Madison, WI.

Semiotics, Semantics and Social Construction of Reality

Ferdinand de Saussure wrote about the significance of signs, symbols and icons, as well as their portrayals or representations in shaping our perceptions.
Examples abound - the hawk and the dove, the fig leaf and the olive tree, the cross, the fish, the (parting of the Red) sea, the crescent, full (bad) moon (rising), the stars, the sun, sunrise and sunset, dawn and dusk, twilight (zone) and (total) eclipse (of the heart), the Great Flood, the Tsunami, Tornados, Hurricanes, Volcano Eruptions, so on and so forth. And colors - white (purity), black (evil), green (natural environment, Islam, etc.), red (true love, blood, Communism, prosperity), purple (nobility), the list goes on. And words - (liberal, social or participatory) democracy or tyranny of the masses, freedom/liberation/emancipation or cooptation/subjugation/oppression, order or authoritarianism, rebuilding/reconstruction (after attacks and invasions?), terrorists/guerillas or reactionaries/revolutionaries/reformists?
As history has revealed, yesterday's terrorists are today's heroes. Look no further - Ghandhi, Nelson Mandela, and the iconic Che Guevara (throb, throb goes my heart!)
On the lighter side of the "abitrariness of signs", here are some witty repartees to corny pick-up lines. Little wonder then some men chose to remain silent. Sigh ... looking forward to spend the week-end in KK (Sabah) for a wedding at the Shangri-La, Tg Aru, and next weekend in Singapore, "tempat jatuh lagi dikenang, inikan pula tempat kelahiran"?
Sent: Tuesday, August 22, 2006 7:49 PM
Subject: Ways to turn men down - since so many of them use such corny lines!!!!
HIM: Can I buy you a drink?
HER: Actually I'd rather have the money.
HIM: I'm a photographer. I've been looking for a face like yours
HER: I'm a plastic surgeon. I've been looking for a face like yours.
HIM: Hi. Didn't we go on a date once? Or was it twice?
HER: Must've been once. I never make the same mistake twice.
HIM: How did you get to be so beautiful?
HER: I must've been given your share.
HIM: Will you go out with me this Saturday?
HER: Sorry. I'm having a headache this weekend.
HIM: Your face must turn a few heads.
HER: And your face must turn a few stomachs.
HIM: Go on, don't be shy. Ask me out.
HER: Okay, get out.
HIM: I think I could make you very happy.
HER: Why? Are you leaving?
HIM: What would you say if I asked you to marry me?
HER: Nothing. I can't talk and laugh at the same time.
HIM: Can I have your name?
HER: Why? Don't you already have one?
HIM: Shall we go see a movie?
SHE: I've already seen it.
HIM: Where have you been all my life?
HER: Hiding from you.
HIM: Haven’t I seen you some place before?
HER: Yes. That's why I don't go there anymore.
HIM: Is this seat empty?
HER: Yes and this one will be if you sit down.
HIM: So, what do you do for a living?
HER: I’m a female impersonator.
HIM: Hey baby what’s your sign?
HER: Do not enter.
HIM: Your body is like a temple.
HER: Sorry, there are no services today.
HIM: If I could see you naked, I'd die happy.
HER: If I saw you naked, I'd probably die laughing
HIM: Where have you been all my life?
HER: Where I'll be the rest of your life - in your wildest dreams.
Quote from the invite:
"Manusia hawa dijadikan daripada tulang rusuk manusia adam, bukan dari kepalanya untuk dijunjung, bukan dari kakinya untuk dijadikan alas, tetapi dari sisinya untuk dijadikan teman hidupnya, dekat dengan lengannya untuk dilindungi dan dekat dengan hatinya untuk dicintai"
(The female being was created from Adam's rib, not from his head to be worshipped, nor from his feet to be downtrodden, but from his side to be his companion, close to his arms to be protected and close to his heart to be loved")

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Where was America in 711AD?

Isn't it a paradox that the worst of leaders and ideas are sponsored because they reinforce the prevailing paranoia and dominant school of thought? Thus accounts for the 'legitimacy' of Bush Sr's and Jr's administrations, as well as the currency of Huntington's idea of the Clash of Civilizations. However, here's an optimistic dissenting viewpoint:
Cry like Women!
On January 2, 1492, Castellanos entered Granada, the only city that was under Muslim control and the Cross immediately replaced the Crescent, which had been flying over Granada for seven centuries.
Sultan Abu Abdullah, his wife and others who accompanied him left the al-Hamra palace last time. The sultan “sighed deeply” and sobbed as he looked back at the palace. “You couldn’t fight like a man, now you're crying like a woman, ” Valide Sultan Fatima told her son, Abu Abdullah. The rocky hill from which the expression “farewell look” is derived is known in Spanish as “El Ultimo Suspiro del Moro” (the Moor’s Last Sigh).
Tariq ibn Ziyad, a great Muslim commander, landed in Spain in 711 and this was was followed by Abdurrahman al-Gafiqi’s conquest of Cordova in 726. In 1492, Muslims abandoned their last stronghold. I have a line, vague in my memory, from a long poem by an Arab poet whose name I cannot recall at the moment: O, men, why this division among you, even though you are brothers? Historians argue that disunity in Muslim political consciousness and understanding and the meaningless power struggles that emerged caused the collapse of Andalusia. This is a truism. For more on Andalusia you can read any of Ziya Pasha’s works.
The Arab League convened yet again on August 7, 2006. The Arab League convenes all the time only to agree to disagree at each meeting. No one knows why Arab League meetings always end without concrete agreements. Take a look at some of the League’s decisions and then bite your tongue! League members agreed to send envoys to New York to pressure the United Nations to take swift measures to alleviate the humanitarian crisis in Lebanon, as if they are not United Nations members. This should go down into the Arab League record books as one of its “great achievements in history,” just like the Organization of the Islamic Conference summit in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. These are all efforts by Arabs and Muslims at state and governmental levels.
Some thing strange happened at the recent Arab League meeting in Lebanon which escaped the media’s attention. Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Siniora, fighting back tears as he was trying to describing the situation his country, could not complete his sentence. And the heroic Arab delegates applauded him.
Every Arab country sings a different tune; each seems to have different calculations. However, a closer look into the matter would show that it is not a tortuous affair. They all share a common fear: Incurring the wrath of the United States! None feels secure. In fact, except Syria and Iran, all the other 22 countries covered by the Greater Middle East Project, including the one that co-chairs the League with pride, face a similar situation. This fact is always ignored: There is no use in fearing the inevitable. Sooner or later, these anachronistic political structures will undergo transformations. If these 22 countries fail to effect the necessary reforms, improve self-reliance and take into account their own dynamics, then they will all be signing their death certificate. The entire Arab population is 280 million and 75 percent are under 30, at the point of explosion. Non-Arab Muslims are disillusioned and also angry.
As Israel bombards Lebanon, the feelings of love and sympathy for Hezbollah leader Nasrallah grows and a Syrian minister expresses his willingness to be a Hezbollah soldier; as the United States and Israel threatens Iran, Tehran gains more respect. In fact, it was not the Lebanese prime minister who burst into tears in front of the world media; it was the entire Arab and Islamic world that cried out for help. 280 million Arabs and 1.5 billion Muslims. Israel is facing an uphill battle against Hezbollah, a tiny group; however, the Arabs are afraid of incurring Israel’s wrath, even though they spend a huge part of their budgets on arms. The Arabs, one way or the other, cannot come together, and even when they succeed in doing so, their meetings yield no results. The future does not depend on such meetings; it depends on adopting the spirit and mission of Osman Bey who fought constantly against Byzantine as he put domestic conflicts aside. I have always stressed that there is a link between the fall of Andalusia and the rise of the Ottoman Empire. As Arab leaders cry like women and sigh deeply, new “Osman Gazis” are emerging. While Andalusia was dying, the Ottoman Empire was being born. We are at the beginning of birth pangs -- and it will be very painful indeed.
August 09, 2006
Another compelling argument:
Beyond the Age of Innocence: Rebuilding Trust
Between America and the World, Kishore Mahbubani, New York: 2005
Chapter 3: America and Islam (Pages 59-65)
Islam is the most successful religion in the contemporary world.
American perceptions of Islam are filtered by several layers of knowledge. At the root is the European understanding that has flowed into American consciousness as a result of the traditional Judaeo-Christian and European civilizational roots of most Americans. Most Americans celebrate the fact that America as a society represents in some ways the apex of Western civilization. It does. But the historical roots of Western civilization are deeply intertwined through centuries of contacts with the Islamic world. Many of the associations that have lodged in Western consciousness have not been happy ones.
The roots of Christian obsession with the Islamic world can be traced at least to the Crusades, if not earlier. It was at the Battle of Tours in 732 A.D. that Charles "The Hammer" Martel and the Franks turned the tide of Muslim expansion. Many heroic legends were created in the Crusades, launched at the end of the eleventh century. All of them had to do with heroic Christian knights battling perfidious Islamic "saracens." Hence, for the Europeans, the word "Crusade" has always had a positive aura around it. Any man or woman who is fighting for a just or worthy cause can be said to be "crusading" for it.
Europeans are aware of the expansion of Islam into Europe. The conquest of Spain beginning in 711 A.D. is etched into historical memory as surely as the image of the Alhambra Palace dominates Granada. So too are all the maximal lines of the Islamic military invasion into Europe, culminating in the Ottoman Turks' siege of Vienna in 1683. Most Europeans believe that they narrowly avoided a cultural disaster when the Muslims marched into Europe. In their view, if Islam had triumphed in Europe as successfully as it had in other parts of the world (and Islam is still the most rapidly expanding religion of the world), it would have snuffed out the "lights" in Europe. Europeans believed that they came close to being wiped out by forces of darkness. This is the reason why Islam affects Western minds so strongly. There are deep, latent, historical fears buried in there. Five continuous centuries of Western triumph have not wiped them out.
It is equally significant that the enormous role played by the Islamic caliphates (in their moment of triumph and glory) of preserving the rich fruits of Greek and Roman civilizations (which still provide the spiritual and intellectual foundations of Western civilization) and then passing it back to Europe has not fully registered in the Western mind. Some Western intellectuals recognize the important role played by the caliphates. Chris Patten is one of them. As he said, "And what of Thomas Aquinas? He read Latin versions of the Greek philosophers, courtesy of the scholars at the Muslim School of Translation in Toledo, to which we owe so much of our knowledge of the scientific, religious and philosophical works of the ancient world." (1) Another is Daniel Rose, a New York philanthropist, who has advised that a rediscovery of Islam's glorious past could do good both for the West and for Islam. He said that we should reconnect the Arab world with "the Golden Age of the Abbassid Caliphate, when Muslim scientists, philosophers, artists and educators sparkled in one of the great cultural flowerings of all time." Rose added:
Then Muslims remembered that the Prophet said 'The ink of scientists is equal to the blood of martyrs'; then Muslim thinkers were proud of their familiarity with the best of the world's cultures; then it was taken for granted that science and knowledge belonged to all mankind and that intellectuals' borrowing and lending benefited everyone. What the Muslims had once they can have again. (2)
Most ordinary Westerners are not aware of this rich history. Indeed if a survey is done of Americans, one in hundred, perhaps one in thousand, will be aware of the crucial role played by the caliphates in preserving the Graeco-Roman heritage for the West. What the West chooses to remember vividly and what it chooses not to remember reveals its attitudes. This is especially true of European attitudes towards the Islamic world. America, without knowing it, has inherited these historic European attitudes. (Note: This is one reason why I will speak interchangeably about "Western" and "American" attitudes towards Islam.)
And another:
It is thanks to Islam that the culture of the Classical World were not lost forever, because that was the aim of the Christian Church - to keep us in the Dark Ages, where we would not question its authority. Islam gave back to Europe - and hence, the modern world, Philosophy, Architecture and Mathematics, to mention only a few of their gifts to us.
In fact, Trupolitiks, America would never have been 'discovered' had it not been for Islam's legacy of Mathematics and Astronomy.
Have some respect, TP, because you owe a lot to these 'blood-thirsty savages and their hateful religion.' Thank your god, who is Allah by a different name, that Islam brought light to darkened Europe, when they set foot in Spain in 711AD.
Last edited on Sun Jun 12th, 2005 10:36 am by Hughmac

Monday, August 14, 2006

Of PI, Rania and the Champion of the New Middle East

Where was I when Puteri Impian I & II were released? Must be in No-Malay-Movie-Land. Anyway, it was truly noble and honorable of Tengku Farid (TF) to counsel and deliver Puteri Nora (PN) to his brother. Azri Iskandar was Hmm ... as TF, and I didn't get to see the actor who played the role of Tengku Faisal; but PN chose Cico instead. There's no accounting for taste, is there?
Talking of taste, Queen Rania may have opted for modern Western fashion to appear on the Oprah Winfrey Show, but she's definitely an asset to Jordan - a diplomat par excellence and an ardent activist to boot - the way she addressed the issue of terrorism and her commitment to educating women ("POVERTY IS A SHE"/"When you educate a woman, you are educating the future"? Or something like that).
And Mahmoud Ahmadinejad - the present Iranian President - who shines like a beacon of hope for the New Middle East, as defined by the settlers of the region, not by BUSH, BLAIR or OLMERT. If the Arabs in particular, and the Muslims in general, had once looked up to Gamal Nasir or Muammar Qadafi for leadership and solidarity, then the fate of the Arabs and the Greater Middle East might just rest on courageous leaders like Ahmadinejad and legitimate resistance or reformists ("One person's terrorist is another person's hero or freedom fighter") such as the Hezbollah and Hamas.
Some quotes:
On July 15 2006, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad compared the actions of Israel in launching an offensive against Lebanon to that of Nazi Germany. "Hitler sought pretexts to attack other nations," "The Zionist regime is seeking baseless pretexts to invade Islamic countries and right now it is justifying its attacks with groundless excuses," he added.
(Isn't that the way of the pecking order? If you can't exact revenge on your oppressors, you find weaker and more vulnerable groups to oppress? Indeed, we internalize the rules of our own oppression)
On Aug 3rd, 2006, in a speech during an emergency meeting of Muslim leaders, Ahmadinejad said, "although the main solution is for the elimination of the Zionist regime, at this stage an immediate cease-fire must be implemented". "[Israel] is an illegitimate regime, there is no legal basis for its existence." "Today the Americans are after the greater Middle East," he said. "The Zionist regime is used to reach this objective. The sole existence of this regime is for invasion and attack." [57]The solution to the Middle East crisis was to destroy Israel.[58]
(Turn your former enemy into an ally and concurrently create a new bogey-man - if the Russian spy-villains were perfect for the Cold War, the Arab terrorists are custom-made for the "Clash of Civilizations". Groom and pamper the "blue-eyed boy" into a "spoilt brat" or proxy to serve your agenda - Oil, "Reconstruction" and Power. Doesn't that sound very much like a meta narrative or a macrocosm of a dysfunctional family? The Bold & the Beautiful or The Royal Tannenbaums of the world stage!)
And last but not least, an excerpt from an Editorial "MID-POINT IN THE MIDDLE EAST?" by TARIQ ALI
New Left Review 38, March-April 2006
"New forces and faces are emerging that have something in common. Muqtada, Haniya, Nasrallah, Ahmadinejad: each has risen by organizing the urban poor in their localities—Baghdad and Basra, Gaza and Jenin, Beirut and Sidon, Tehran and Shiraz. It is in the slums that Hamas, Hizbollah, the Sadr brigades and the Basij have their roots. The contrast with the Hariris, Chalabis, Karzais, Allawis, on whom the West relies—overseas millionaires, crooked bankers, cia bagmen—could not be starker. A radical wind is blowing from the alleys and shacks of the latter-day wretched of the earth, surrounded by the fabulous wealth of petroleum. The limits of this radicalism, so long as it remains captured by the Koran, are clear enough. The impulses of charity and solidarity are infinitely better than those of imperial greed and comprador submission, but so long as what they offer is social alleviation rather than reconstruction, they are sooner or later liable to recuperation by the existing order. Leaders comparable to figures like Chávez or Morales have yet to emerge, with a vision capable of transcending national or communal divisions, a sense of continental unity and the self-confidence to broadcast it. Thanks to its ex-mayor, there is now a statue of Bolívar in Tehran. The region awaits an equivalent spirit."

Saturday, August 12, 2006

An Evening in Beirut: Memories of Lebanon

Siniora wiping away tears during his emotional speech at the Arab foreign ministers’ meeting in Beirut yesterday
Qatar’s First Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister HE Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabor al-Thani and his Egyptian counterpart Ahmed Abul Gheit on their way to attend an emergency meeting of Arab foreign ministers in Beirut yesterday. HE Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim later expressed satisfaction over the results reached at the meeting, terming the Arab stance towards supporting Lebanon as "unanimous". He said that "pivotal" Arab states should back Lebanon’s demand for an immediate ceasefire
Siniora said he refused to let Lebanon be a ‘punch bag’ for Israel and made an emotional appeal for an end to the killings, as Arab foreign ministers gathered in Beirut threw their support behind his plan for a ceasefire.
Fayrouz, who sang at London's Albert Hall in 1962, returns to London's Palladium in 1978
"By singing for the Palestinian cause without politicizing it and by paying respect to Arab capitals without personalizing them to leaders, Fairouz may have earned more political respect for the small nation of Lebanon than all the professional diplomats combined."
"Despite her celebrity status, Fairouz never acted like a celebrity and maintained an almost ascetic decorum. She was probably more comfortable recording her famous Christian liturgy albums than some of the dance songs."
Fairouz: a Voice, a Star, a Mystery by Sami Asmar, Al Jadid, Vol. 5, no. 27 (Spring 1999)
"My father was uneasy. The idea that his daughter should sing in front of men he didn't know, was difficult for him to accept, but my singing helped support the family. So he dressed me in boy's clothes, and I sang this way for several years. I realize now that he wanted to convince himself, and the audience too, that the singer was a young boy, and not a young woman."
"If only ... My passion overcame me," sang Umm Kulthum, the "Star of the East" or the "Diva of Arab Song"
From Asmahan's Secrets: Woman, War, and Song by Sherifa Zuhur
Al Jadid magazine, Vol. 1, No. 1 (November 1995)
"Greetings to the gentle breezes of River Barada,
Never-ending are the tears, 0 glorious Damascus.
The blood of our martyrs, France knows well,
And knows that it is truth and Justice"
- Words by Egyptian poet, Ahmad Shawky as sung by Muhammad Abdul Wahab
From Mohammad Abdul Wahab: The Father of Modern Egyptian Song By Habeeb Salloum, Al Jadid, Vol. 1, No. 2 (December 1995)
The voices of Fairouz, Abdul Wahab and Umm Kulthum that emanated from the vinyl records of my late Ami Kassim at my Sidi's home in Klang formed my earliest memory of Lebanon ...
Today, an evening in Beirut sounds more like a nightmare than a dream or a Hell on Earth than a Paradise ...
Evening Roundup: Heavy Shelling on Beirut's Southern Suburbs as Hizbullah Unleashes Rockets on Northern Israel
Beirut, 25 Jul 06, 19:44
Quiet Evening, but Borders Still Under Attack
Sunday, July 16, 2006
A tearful plea to end the killings
Published: Tuesday, 8 August, 2006, 12:02 PM Doha Time
BEIRUT: Prime Minister Fouad Siniora yesterday made a tearful plea for an end to the four-week-old conflict in Lebanon as Israel warned there was no limit to its offensive after 57 civilians were killed in a new blitz of air raids.
Siniora’s plan calls for an Israeli withdrawal, the expansion of the UN peacekeeping force sent to the area after a previous invasion in 1978, the deployment of the Lebanese army to the border and the disarming of Hezbollah.
In his speech to the Arab ministers in Beirut, Siniora called for help in seeking "an immediate and unconditional ceasefire."
Wiping away tears, he told them: "Your standing with us is a right and a duty. Arab security is interlinked."
He said the ministers had endorsed his seven-point plan to bring a halt to the fighting as an alternative to the UN draft resolution.
– Agencies

Thursday, August 10, 2006

An Eye for an Eye, And the Whole World Turns Blind

There are two sides to every story:
The Road to Guantanamo
by Michael Winterbottom & Mat Whitecross(GB, 2006, 95 min).
Date: 10 August 2006 (Thursday)
Time: 6 pm - 8.00pm
Venue: Bar Council Auditorium
A film about three British nationals and their little camping trip to Afghanistan and to Guantanamo. This film chronicles the journey of Shafiq Rasul, Asif Iqbal and Rhuhel Ahmed who decided to pay a visit to Pakistan ahead of the American invasion in 2001.Their original intent was to help out the people of the region. They soon ventured over the border into Afghanistan. Before long there was an intense conflict and they found themselves in the least serendipitous circumstances imaginable.Held by the Northern Alliance, the three were turned over to the Americans and sent on a trip to Camp X-Ray, then Camp Delta on Guantanamo for two years.They were accused of having attended a rally training camp help by Osama bin Laden - a charge which Britain's MI5 refuted. As a result they are repeatedly Tortured and held without hope of a trial.While the film is not a documentary, it is a true and very sad story. It is a hard-hitting reminder of how far America has strayed from its core principles.
Visit: http://www.roadtoguantanamomovie.com/
Berlin Film Festival 2006:Silver Bear
Best Director: Michael Winterbottom, Mat Whitecross.
There is a story about a woman who chose not to be a “victim”. She and her family left their homeland when she was a child soon after the beat of ‘war drums’ and the sound of weapons being sharpened were heard around her village. The village used to be named after her ‘race’ - Kampung Melayu Kaki Bukit - but now it has a new name - Hougang.
At the host country where she received a scholarship from her employer to further her studies at a premier university, there were protests and demonstrations against the establishment of “Universiti Merdeka”.
She could have chosen to bear grudges and ‘avenge’ for being discriminated and relegated as a “second class citizen” but she chose to support every citizen’s rights to formal education and knowledge, and risked being labelled "selling out on the Malays".
Now, can she hope to sensitize 'disgruntled' citizens/students by teaching at the very heartland of Chinese 'chauvinism'?

PGL the Musical

Do see PGL the Musical, even if it's only to gawk at Stephen Rehman-Hughes. M. Nasir was alright, but give me R-H anytime! Been quite awhile since a hunk caught my eye, and boy, did he caught mine! I don't care if he can't act or sing, as long he's drool-drop gorgeous! And R-H, were you waiting for us to invite you to our dining table when you 'pretended' to be lost at the buffet spread?
Please, please tell us so!
Congratulations once again, and thank you, Tiara and Datuk Seri Effendi, for taking Malaysian performing arts to greater heights (apart from giving us R-H via complimentary balcony tics!)
The use of wayang kulit, gamelan, kabuki and other theatrical forms created a magnificent Nusantara/Oriental feel, with strains of Pocahontas and Miss Saigon wafting or seeping through like a cool Tropical evening breeze laced with tuak from a Sarawakian longhouse.
Kudos too to Sukania Venugopal as the loyal but defiant Bayan, AC Mizal who portrayed a much superior version of the Control Freak from Hell - Gusti Adipati - than Alex Komang in the movie (which I saw twice and thought Alex was the hunk then!), Adlin Aman Ramlie as the arrogant yet amusing Sultan Mahmud and little Afif as the adorable Raja Ahmad!