Tuesday, May 31, 2011

BKK is here

Is "relax" something that ever happens? Maybe once in a while. Namely when I'm sleeping on the way to Bangkok. Didn't get round to reading "Bridge Over River Kwai" and am going to look more travel bum that guru but for the moment I need a coffee fix.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Popular Entree

The Popular Bookstore sale is back! This is what happened at the last one.

The frenzied feeling of grab war was not quite felt as draped in a moss green cardigan the size of Alaska, I shuffled my baby pink Crocs into the hall where the sale was and is as of right now, still taking place. The haunting rhyme of a yet incomplete Submission lingering in my mind, I was unable to identify and swoop upon the books with familiar eagle eye tenacity. Running children irked me and Kenny G playing on the airwaves made me wonder if Popular Bookstore had hired a psychologist who recommended the overrated yet not to be underestimated rhythm which promoted both utter despondency and that fuzzy feeling of purchasing power all in one note.

My only goal last night was to own a few more pieces of Gregory Maguire's fairytale set namely, Lion Among Men and Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister. Unfortunately none of Maguire's books made the sale shortlist and I wandered aimlessly wondering if even my brief stint to a paper wonderland could lift my as-a-pig-loves-mud wallowing spirits.

Dismissing, 10 Habits That Mess Up a Woman's Diet (only 10??), The God Delusion (I have enough problems of my own without listening to Dawkins' rant) and a travel book on Thailand (getting lost is that much more fun), I eventually collected a stack comprising amongst others, an Alphabet book illustrated by the famed Spiderwick author Tony DiTerlizzi, a book telling me that Emus Can't Walk Backwards and yet another providing me the answer to Does Anything Eat Wasps? (I am still looking for The Duck that Won the Lottery). I also picked up a much reduced copy of Anna Karenina. I'm guessing people don't like reading tragic-romantic Russian Tolstoy.

In the 'fuzziness' of the moment, I had a sudden urge to make mini meringues with dollops of whipped cream and chestnut puree. Having found no chestnut, I used walnut instead. May the weekend always end in baking happiness.

Not ideal

Headaches 3 nights in a row. Feet feel like they've got chalk between the toes. Molar is aching. Organs not fed enough oxygen. C'MON BRAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Whine whine whine.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Hibernate

Going home to knock out for 15 hours so that I can function tomorrow. Unlike superheroes, I am pathetically human and need sleep.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The Trivial God

When we treat God as spectator and determine that traditions precede relationships, we run the risk of assuming falsely that there is a finishing line waiting for us when the race has not even begun.

When we eat ourselves up and bear our hearts down in presupposed failures and innumerable flawed facets, we ought to remember that God helps those who cannot help themselves.

When we narrow our minds and puff up our pride, religion becomes but a figment of human neediness yet if it were truly so, God could only ever be less noble than the most depraved of human beings.

Why do we always need to see that the gods are in line with our plumb when we carelessly live off tangent in relation to God's?

Better condemned as Frankenstein's creature than exalted as the prometheus creator.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Lock and load

Sometimes
it is necessary for one
to ignore naysayers 
in order for determination to step up
and accomplish things
naysayers never will.

Tonight belongs to nutmeg shortbread stuffed with walnut cream cheese topped with chocolate.
A single burst of approximately 500 calories.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Part of your World

Imagination never calculates actual ability, current skill, realtime fear or the stalwartness of an inbuilt mammoth refusing to budge, into the equation. Having signed up for scuba diving I was under the mistaken impression that even though I can hardly swim and allow myself to believe that there are sharks lurking in the swimming pool, that swimming in the big "out there" ocean would be a breeze, full of romantic overtures and a lovable mammal. I blame Free Willy.

There are 5 stages to complete in controlled waters be it a swimming pool or shallow bay (approx 2 metres deep) before even stepping out into any sort of depth. I failed to even sniff at the horizon of Stage 1, which I actually find more laughable than distressing. If anything, having the ingrained sense of guilt that every woman owns (even when it's not your fault), I felt sorry for my instructor whom I hope did not despair at having the worst student ever. Incidentally, our instructor's name is Jonas which made me think of Jonah and more importantly The Whale (the kind that eats you). What were the odds, eh?

During the 5 stages we had to run through basic techniques with our equipment under water. I balked at the point we were asked to allow water in through our masks and blow it out using our noses. Firstly, by letting water in, it meant I couldn't see anything. I was working so hard at controlling my breathing that any extra hindrance was simply an overload on my survival instincts. I kept breathing in instead of blowing out so more water rushed in. Coupled with the fact that my mask was still flooded with water, I didn't stop to think about fixing the situation and reaching a solution (which we learnt in class). First things first, my red alert head told me to get my face out of the water. I spent the rest of the day soaking up the sun on a float, getting burnt and throwing up overboard (a sea-worthy first).

Given that the course is such that I can complete it at my own pace even though the first time went so disastrously wrong that I think Jonas will swim to Ninevah rather than teach me again, what has this tiny stint in scuba taught me and what will I do from now on?

Firstly, I need the spend more time in the pool. I need to build up stamina and learn not to panic. I also need to learn to disregard my nose. When that's all sorted I need to learn that having my head underwater for extended periods of time is ok. How I go about this I'm not sure but if I plod along surely enough, I might get to see a mermaid yet.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Bodyworks

It's nearly 2am and I will probably regret this tomorrow but the coke keeps running in my system keeping my mind awake even as I crave rest and the cold sheets are calling with its faithful song. If things go to plan I'll be scuba diving this weekend and for someone who only hit the water 2 weeks ago after an approximate 5 year break, a little bit more than man-eating sharks is on the mind. Water is hardly my "thing." There is no actual excitement at hand, no pent-up desire derived from this other than the practical accumulation of skill and experience. So why bother?

There are enough self-abasing defects for me to harp on if I genuinely wanted to give myself a heart attack. That my feet have low arches is just one from a string I could rattle that go all the way from the common spider vein, jelly-belly and chipped tooth to psychological warfare that personifies as night terrors in the mind. Who can understand or comprehend the horrors any one mind can summon? Who can fill the void of early mornings in the aftermath of chained slumber, when waking brings with it into the new day the memory of loss?

Some cut. Some starve. Some purge. Some eat. Some disengage. Some run themselves to the bone. Some drink. Some burn. Some shop. Some rage. All try to desperately block out the white rush of noise of a saturated world, bored with its own destructive cycle. Maybe the edges that I throw myself toward are my way of beating hidden demons. For now, it is seen as foolishness, as irresponsible, as irrational. One day those edges will become the edge that build rather than destroy. Herodotus said, "It is better by a noble boldness to run the risk of being subject to half the evils we anticipate than to remain in cowardly listlessness for fear of what may happen." One day.

After all that morbid talk, my body is still running, still holding my gut together, still living. Pretty damn amazing.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Wiks in Pics

I thought being brunette was getting boring so Blondies it was.


Mabel's strawberry chocolate butter cake with fondant from Bakery de Borah




Supersized Vienesse "fingers"


I didn't make this; sup tulang opposite Swinburne University


At 50 years of Independence, we have the New Testament in BM; at 54 years of Merdeka it all goes to pot :( Do the adopted symbols of Malaysian pride and dignity on the cover mean nothing anymore?




Direct translation: God so cherished the people in this world until He gave His Son the only, so that every person who believes in that Son will not be destroyed but gain life true and forever. (John 3:16)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Christian State won't affect state of Christians

Words escape me. The alleged discussion to plan a coup has certainly exposed to tinted-glass Malaysians that anyone can be quoted out of context whether it be dim-witted cabinet ministers or foolish Christian leaders. With chagrin I have to say that Penang throwing its hands in the air saying "it wasn't me!" sounds a lot like many other factions we complain about. That the Penang Assemble ban Utusan from reporting at the next State Assembly also brings back memories of the sandbox. We have all heard how Utusan's job-on-the-side is making things sound as incredibly unbelievable before publishing. Could the Penang Government not have given written notice to Utusan and revoked Utusan's license over time and recorded wrongdoings? This knee jerk response does not sit well and leaves me wondering whether Ubah can converse like an adult.

Despite the 'outcry' that Christians are being 'matyred' once again (that is actually what you sign up for you know; that Merc in the porch is a bonus), I for one can certainly imagine pastors and leaders praying for a "Christian Malaysia" and mean it in all sincerity and reverence. I myself considered the issue in high school, contemplating whether the "right" government by any Biblical standard had to be a "Christian goverment"; albeit a theocentric but not theocratic one. If Christians and Muslims alike see their creed and religious way of life as the be all and end all then having a "Christian Nation" would be no different to having an "Islamic" one; it would be less of a juxtapose than you really think.

Even more so, we are NOT an Islamic state and non-Muslims are not bound by Syariah. In the same way, even if everything Islam were to be replaced by Christian terminology, references and benefits in the Constitution, non-Christians would not be bound by "Christian Laws." In the spirit of Christ, you would not be able to overthrow governments and evil by changing the externals and/or of infiltrating a corrupt system.

Have you not heard that new wine that fill old wineskins will burst the dam?

I am annoyed by Christian leaders who allow themselves to get carried away without discernment. Those babble like the pagans and dull their mind with mouldy theory of text they do not take to heart. They balk when any breath of "Islamic state" is mentioned but justify themselves in a public spectacle that causes more confusion than peace. Yes, understandably, many things could have been taken out of context but it is one's responsibility to guard one's tongue and to bear the consequences for foregoing that responsibility.

What is most telling is that the Christian leaders at the meeting in Penang betray that there are leaders who are guiding Chrsitians in this country who have forgotten that we do not need a physical state within which we glorify our Saviour. Christians need no geographical pilgrimmage; neither Utah nor Jerusalem nor Meccah and no shrines of Vishnu or Buddha or even Mary. The kingdom of God is only found in islands or coasts or continents to the extent where His people are found. The church is the kingdom of God, not the building or steeple or baptismal pool. There is no explicit mandate to transform governments or remodel tax structures. No mandate even, dare I say this, to say that we are to dissent when our children are forbidden to bring pork to school.

Perhaps the leaders have been taken out of context. There is nothing wrong to pray against corruption, to speak up and out against its follies and vicious effects. What is wrong is when through a wrong understanding of scripture; when interpretation is twisted to run foul of its intention; when meaning is disregarded for popularity; when historical context is denied; when the centredness of the here-and-now takes precedence over God's timeline; that faith is seen to be of little value, to be ridiculed and rubbished as puffery of the human mind.

There is a fine line between legal right and moral right. That your moral right is only upheld where there is a legal right in place is hard words to hear for those under oppression but undoubtedly justified to the hearers of Self, Me, Myself and I which again, lives in each one of us. Then again, there are religious laws that tell us we have no right except the right that we render to God.

Perhaps I could better provoke a response by parading around Bukit Aman with a tee linking Penang to the Pope.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Too hot to handle

Kuching has been hit by hot spots spiking off the charts with little wind to regulate the humidity. If he had to endure similar (or probably worse) scorching situations, I'm starting to not just know but FEEL why Jonah felt very uncharitable towards Ninevah. Maybe Jonah should have googled pictures to lull himself into a mirage and thereby lowering his body temperature. The following could have helped:-
 
As seen at doodleandhoob
  
Think MBKS will let us do this at the Waterfront? Picture from TheEpochTimes

Desperate times call for... at scrapetv

Actually, whether facing intense heat or chilling rain, the best reprieve is always:-
Other tips and tricks at House into Home

Friday, May 06, 2011

Horribible

Pronounced horri-bee-ble and not horri-bible.

Used when one has not had any coffee in the morning, noted to-cry-for spelling mistakes in previous posts and dreamt of marauding dogs last night.

This is horribible, terribible...

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Settled dust

Elections are over. Results have been announced. Now what?

I dreamt several nights ago that I was at one of DAP's ceramahs but this time round there were plastic chairs offered and noticeably fewer people (as opposed to people being jam packed like sardines with hardly any breathing or standing space). Save for the speaking screaming into his microphone, people who were there appeared largely reluctant and disinterested.

What I want to know is, where are the committees they said they would form? Where are the service centres? Is there even a timeline? For example they could say that by end of June they would have recruited sufficient volunteers and by end of August a physical service centre would be officiated. I think as citizens and fellow members of our respective constituencies we need to firstly understand the powers, limited or otherwise that our elected representative holds. Can he or she call for and act to bring about actual changes in our day-to-day lives?

I noted that just prior to elections the traffic lights hosted machinery ready to widen the road and possibly commence work on the long-awaited flyover. What I want to know is who was responsible for getting the job started. Due to a stream of sewage repairs, the bumpiness of our roads, especially in the Padungan area could rival that of a by-road in Mulu. One particular drain near the resilient apolitical (or hypocritical considering it was supporting every party yet none) Cat Statue has been spewing water since Monday. Is it within Wong King Wei's jurisdiction to quickly sort out that mess? Or what of the City-Tabuan Jaya route along Foochow Road? Will there be any plans to widen that road or what of the Pending-Stutong road that brings us past the smoke snorting CMS factory? When will the 4-into-1 bottleneck be looked at?

Gah. Maybe perceptions need to be changed instead of merely appearance.

Singing the Song of Sng

Having taken a hiatus to indulge in life away from the brain drain of Malaysian politics, I am back with new clothes, renewed realism and rebounded from my on-again-off-again relationship with dieting. I think at the moment it's "on" as long as there is no real pressure to commit.

I wonder if George Chan is flexing his muscles these days now that he's no longer the CM's Chinese lapdog. I wonder if Ms Foo is attending May(day) parties in glitz funded by disintegrating heart machinery in a white elephant hospital that Dr Sim so proudly confessed to having persuade our PM to initiate. I wonder if Violet and Dr Sim are looking at drains together. I wonder if Dominique Ng will restore his blog which he removed after having lost in the last State elections. I wonder if anyone has looked at the healthy and safety issues behind the Bengoh Dam. I doubt it. Last week I was told that the reason Mr let's-blame-the-rain-and-close-one-eye-to-my-boss'-illegal-logging Len Talif was retained in his Forestry position was because he had carved a rep for himself as the best liar. The Rajang issue is still sitting sore and my emotional blisters will not be appeased until Len and James Masing start emptying their pockets to environmentally butress the banks. For freakin sakes Len, you are the effin environmental guru aren't you????????

Someone I spoke to today was of the opinion that politics should extend beyond social concern to invest in workable and structured visions of economic and political growth in social stability. Unfortunately, it appears that our politicians do a poor job in indulging in either. The last politician deemed to be a visionary is now lumped with his second sodomy charge and a sex scandal. I may render Singaporeans boring and homogenous (no, that does not mean gay) but at least their infrastructure is top notch. Cronyism may prevail but their equivalent of our Council houses are painted by the Government and I bet you their potholes are fixed. However, it is easier to clean a one bedroom pad compared to ranch with rolling acres of virgin forest so wide that people still think we live in trees.

What does this have to do with Larry "the Cucumber*" Sng? I'm not sure. Yet. He is supposedly new blood that the State needs. Supposedly. You are however, the company you keep and the list of cumbersome people to which he will be affiliated have roughly been listed and I haven't even gotten to the scum (except maybe Len, who is my personal bone to pick). I haven't quite decided which category he should fall into. Businessmen can become politicians; look up Donald Trump in the papers but unlike countries with a semblance of integrity (not that the US of A tops the list anyway) as far as Malaysia goes, the inevitable 'Whatever minger" disdain comes out to play at the suggestion. If I see the Sng in person, what I really want to know is, what did he make out of those airport trees being hacked down by his wife's daddy? Who cares that his/in law's home is allegedly built using airport parts. A house that gaudy he can keep.

I don't think he's even a YB at this stage but that's probably another political move to open doors without stepping on too many toes. He has a degree from LSE but then Rais has a degree from King's College (Lord, help me). Georgie is now sitting in the penalty box for kissing too much ass at the people's expense. But it looks like there are never enough in the wings. Taib must have a thing for chinese poodles. Lucky for him, in Malaysia they breed everywhere.

* Larry the Cucumber is a character in the hit children's series VeggieTales

Yay it's not just me!!!!!

1) On the Shadow Cabinet (BONUS POINTS for accountability)
http://www.barubian.net/2011/05/sarawak-pakatan-forms-shadow-cabinet.html

2) On James Masing and "goodies"
http://www.barubian.net/2011/05/masing-spews-sarcasm-over-shadow.html

3) On Crossing the Racial Divide
http://www.barubian.net/2011/05/prove-youre-multiracial-sarawak-pkr.html

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Love is...

Salivate along with Tuscany Grilled Lamb at LeSpice

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Keep dreaming

It has been almost a week since my last post but alas it has not been spent sleeping (much) or watching Bones (save for 2 episodes). At least I have been baking somewhat... feeling tetchy. Kind of like this:-

Found at http://guildmum.com/2010/09/cataclysm-beta-pile-of-donkey-poo.html