Tuesday, December 30, 2008
No of 8As: 86
% of straight As: 72%
Not good ha ha. Last year it was 80+ % rasanya ha ha.
I have no comments - I think all the debaters got straight As. Haven't checked the hockey players.
I don't know whether the boys are not up to the mark, or the teaching methods are inadequate; or the boys lack motivation.
But if you know the process to get enrolled to MCKK (or any SBP for that matter); there are always ways to go and meet someone to "smuggle" your children in. The question is: how many in a batch gets through this way; or are we able to upgrade students who from the very beginning did slightly less than others academically?
We sound like broken records every year ha ha.
But the future of MCKK was never decided in the academic field. He he.
Sunday, December 28, 2008
Anyway it's the year end, the batch's website clocks its 12th year and the batch's blog completed its 5th year.
I have a few things that I thought worth blogging:
1) Flashback of 2008: Climax of Sukantara, weddings, MightyDucks and Debaters etc.
2) "Kenapa batch kiter kewl": A junior said that he thought Class of 94 is the coolest batch of F5 throughout his 5 year in koleq - which understandably sent us laughing trying to think why we were kewl. So after a series of brainstorming, we had compiled a list of why "batch kiter kewl"
3) YTM Tuanku Jaafar passed away yesterday. I personally thought that his passing has a tremendous effect on MCKK; it's a question whether the powers-that-be with influence over MCKK can read the obvious writing on the wall. The time of the Elves is passing.
But I can only do this once I get my Streamyx back - so please wait.
In the mean time, selamat menyambut Maal Hijrah - may we reflect on the past year and where do we bring to go next year.
Saturday, December 13, 2008
(Enough of the disclaimer).
Cheering has always been close to us, Class of 94.
We were bad in almost everything - even our top jambu does not rank very high comparedto some other batches' (looking back in restrospect). The only notorious thing that we did not do was to burn the school down (but that was because smoking was unofficially tolerated and endorsed, so people don't have to skulk around too much hiding in the store room to smoke).
But we were good in cheering; and we were proud of our cheering. Much as Class of 91 should be remembered for the initiatives to build the grand stand, a practice which lasts until today; we too have some innovations with the cheering.
Growing up in koleq during my years, the greatest honour that one can have is to sing Gemilang for the right occasion; after you have earned the right to sing the song. I earned that right twice - winning PPM in 1992 and 1993; as well as the PHT in those 2 years (being a part of the contingent). Gemilang in those days was normally reserved for a victory at least at the state level or higher.
It's very hard to explain the jubilation and the deep impact of pride that you would have - having practiced year after year to sing the song for the right occasion; when you finally earn the right to sing Gemilang, I felt I have earned my place as an MCKK boy.
(If the present boys find this too philosophical to understand; think of this analogy: it is as if you have been studying porn for so long and had even attempted limited experimentation - singing Gemilang when you have earned the right is like your first sex after all those years of secretly watching porn and cleaning your browsing history so that mum does not catch you)
The pride that we have for our cheering is symbolised with the honour that we accord to the song Gemilang (after all this is the most snobbish, self-publicity driven self-proclaimed song that MCKK could ever come up with over the years; it perfectly summarises everything that people hate about MCKK ha ha) - so each time we were asked to sing Gemilang (even if it is a practice); we took it very seriously.
But things have changed so much over the years; judge for yourself.
And keep the answer to yourself:
Ada Apa Dengan Cheering?
a) Putih Tulang
b) Putih Mata
If we don't even allow the boys to have adequate practice for cheering, obviously they will not be good at it. If we don't allow them to enjoy the cheering during the games, obviously they will not put their hearts at it and shout to the top of their lungs. If we don't allow a little hardship to instill the right discipline for cheering practice, obviously the junior boys will not memorise the songs and the claps by heart to make it perfect.
We make them; after all they are just kids. I don't believe boys become monsters over the years (otherwise I rather donate all my sperms to the sperm bank and give up the thought of having kids) so to presume that we did tolerate the cheering practice in the past because the cheerleaders were kinder (obviously you did not go through cheering practice with Tong & The Bunch from Class of 91); was a bit off the mark.
Maybe we grew more regimented and less tolerant over the years; just as our society has also become.
Points to ponder (ok ok this is the last time I will end a posting with this, I know it's annoying).
pps: Yeap I am back in Bukit Antarabangsa, at my desk blogging from my PC. I miss home so just wanted to see and to feel at home again. And an advice to all of you out there - please don't give me the lecture about how dangerous it is and about people should move out. It is very easy to say that since you are not in that position. I have all the means to move out but what about others who can't? If you want to be spared from my more vociferous lecture, stay away will you? Last night I spent half an hour shouting to an MP on the phone about this "holier than thou" attitude, and I felt good. Shouting is addictive.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
People have started to make jokes about the whole thing in our Male-ing List and I can laugh at it.
It started with Idzam's email:
"Mangkuk vision aku selamat tak? Hehehe"
...referring to mangkuk vision that Ayu used to bake bread and butter pudding for our last get together after Raya (yeap until today I have not returned it!).
Khalid was more direct:
"Perlu cari rumah baru la camtu. Takpe take your time. Kalau boleh yg corner lot".
Then here comes Bochap buat cacamarba:
"Kalau boleh siap dengan orang rumah sekali.."
Lepas tu discussion melencong ke persoalan siapakah yang wajar mendapat sijil pingat emas sbb dah kahwin lebih dari satu in the next reunion.
I have to admit I am entertained. Coming from them, knowing how close we are and that they are trying their best to cheer us up.
It's a complete contrast to what I watch on TV in a forum discussing the landslide and from the comments online, including from Kadir Jasin.
Generally it's along the theme:
"Padan muka korang, ingat korang kaya sangat nak duduk kat bukit. Dah kaya tu pandai-pandai la, sapa suruh pi duduk tepi bukit".
I was sad yet unsurprised, because as a group of people, we ourselves always identify ourselves to the syndrome called PHD - perasaan hasad dengki. We are very quick to pass judgment, forgetting that these people - despite their financial status i- are human too who have to work hard to earn a decent living. It's the very basic human desire to want what is good - so long they do it honestly, they are entitled to their choices, so long they make calculated choices within the limits of their knowledge at that time.
The tragedy is not about them being financially better off than others - it's about people in dire need of help, having loss their livelihood. But we as a society always choose to show the ugly face, rather than take the moral high ground and show the compassion.
Many of our own citizens, including the learned ones like Kadir Jasin, as if forgets that one section of our society's prosperity is partly the reason that the humungous government that we have now has been sustained all this while. Sometimes we forget that these people that we so easily scoff at, in their greatest hours of misery, are also the small number of people who pay income tax in the highest bracket. In their small way, no matter what we think of them, they could have indirectly contributed to our own livelihood. But alas - we are living in a society where small-mindedness rules.
Kadir Jasin made a good comparison on why there is not so much fuss about the flood victims.
What if I ask this question (to apply the same logic of questions that have been rained on the poor residents of Bukit Antarabangsa):
Who asks all these people to live in this flood-prone area? After all flood is an annual event - why did you continue to live there?
If that logic is being applied, the whole of Terengganu should have been vacated, Japan is inhabitable completely due to the threats of earthquakes. All the nice fishing villages have to be vacated.
Perhaps it is not so much a question of the naïve citizen's choice of dwelling - but what kind of trust that we can have in our authorities to protect the citizens; and the reliance in the due process to make sure that all that should be in place; are in place.
While the Japanese and Hong Kong governments legislate and made sure all precautions are put in place, we continue to engage in finger pointing. While Japanese islands become habitable; we live with the same tragedy year in and year out.
Points to ponder.
Sunday, December 07, 2008
To those who have been sending SMS and I have not had the chance to reply – thank you very much, I am safe and sound. I was very upbeat yesterday – it’s only when I began to see the coverage on TV and internet (and seeing the devastation) that I realized the magnitude of it all. And then it hit you of how close you were.
The night before, I was supposed to catch up with Yusri Mohamad (Yusoy, Class of 89), the ABIM President. He is one of the few from my generation to whom I pay an allegiance and homage; so from time to time we try our best to sit down and discuss issues. Not that it changes anything around us, but sharing different perspectives always help.
But I have been clocking 14 – 15 hrs a day (sometimes 7 day a week) at work for the last 2 – 3 weeks so it was too tiring and I skipped. Went back, everything was normal. Bukit Antarabangsa was as serene as it’s always been – quiet, the air was cool and each time the car climbed the hills from MRR all the way towards my place, the trees by the roadside always remind me of why I personally have always liked this place, especially after the long hours in office. It is very peaceful place and a complete contrast to the noise and congestion of KL, despite being only about 15 minutes away.
And I had a good sleep that night.
By 5 am, I woke up because it was unusually hot. I always sleep with the windows open and I never switch the air conditioner on because there was no need – it’s always cool in Bukit Antarabangsa. I found out that it was a black out – I went to check the fuse box and discovered it was not just my unit, it was the whole building. So I thought – yeah, must have been one of the few blackouts for the area (at that time I should have thought how unusual because it was very rare that the whole place’s electricity was cut off).
Was awake about 645 am – after Subuh, by 735 I sent an SMS to Chamat to make sure he didn’t forget that we were supposed to jog at KLCC. Each time when both of us are in KL for the weekend, Chamat and I try our best to jog at KLCC; so that we can have big breakfast at Lotus after that without feeling guilty (well, that guilty part only relates to me).
The following SMS captured many of the moments which I should try not to forget:
“Chamat I am awake and getting ready to go” – 7:35:03
“Sorry raf, I’m not. Will need 2 take a raincheck. Enjoy d run” – Chamat 9094, 7:41:15
“Alaaaaa aku nk breakfast, bkan nak lari. Ok then next time” – 7:50:50
“U will read d news abt a major landslide in bkt antarabangsa. My place
is only abt 300 m from d place. Road is blocked n electricity cut off. I m ok
just will b trapped here 4 a while. I don’t know how long they will take to
clear” – 8:47:23
“My God, Let me know if you need any help” – Baidzawi, 9:11:14
“I need a chopper to get out! Ha ha at least about 3 – 4 days will be trapped here ngn Alina! Budget kantoi la mcm ni. Dh la x de electricity” – 9:16:58
“Sorry to hear that. Will pray 4 u. Take care” – Idzam 9094, 9:19:52
“Ya allah fizi, alhamdulillah. That’s d price u hv 2 pay 4 staying at ‘antarabangsa’. Bila jadi” – Kak Rok, 9:20:26
“Thank God u r ok! U hv food stocked up I hope, at least 4 b’fast?” – Amy, 9:22:46
“I can go dieting ha ha just x know how to survive without electricity for days.
Hope they fix that first” – 9:24:26
“Is there any way for u to get out that place, even if on foot? I can pick u up, at least u don’t have 2 b in the dark, can eat and communicate with family” – Chamat 9094, 9:34:47
“Try 2call, got voicemail. Glad u ok. Let us know if u need anything” – Fendy Nawi, 9:35:02
“Don’t think so chamat. I’ll send u d photo after this it’s quite bad. If we can get out by foot I’ll certainly get jita to pick me up ha ha. I need electricity to at least do work. But we’ll see” – 9:36:42
“wey. Ada tnh runtuh kt bkt antarabangsa. Rmh kau ok tak?” – Pejal 9094,
“I suggest u pack essentials, walk out on foot to the nearest point where a car can go in. My house blom ada internet, so am working from my mom’s. But I can send u 2 jit’s if u want” – Chamat 9094, 9:39:47
“Kau dah klr building ke? Better packup mana yg patut“ – Fendy Nawi, 9:39:52
“I dun understand kenapa byk sngt landslide skrng nie. R u ok? Mmg terputus hubungan dunia luar ke” – Fendy 0408, 9:40:26
“Better conserve ur hp batt coz u don’t know whn u can charge it agn. & make sure u hv enuff drinking water coz agn u don’t know whn u can come down from there” – Jita 9094, 9:48:17
“Hahaha.. True :-) Hang in there! Tgh berebut w my daughter ni (news/Disney channel) – Amy, 9:48:24
“I have to see how exactly I want to walk on foot. Aku memg x want to be trapped here. Anyway concentrate on ur work I need to confirm reliably how long they will take to clear the rubbles n mud. 3 ppl died so far” – 9:49:20
“Ok. Let me know” – Chamat 9094,
“3 ppl died n 15 injured so far. One of the house tu bdk petronas went same orientation with me. Hope he’s ok his house definitely kena sapu” – 9:50:43
“Salam, abg ruff, ba’ang ni, did u hear the news? Ur house okey?” – Ba’ang 0307, 10:03:19
“Ouh, nseb bek.. gud 2 hear that :-D umah my fren dkat gle ngan tmpt yg rntuh tu.. thx god umah dia pun okay gak.. hmm, just askin’, rsau” – Ba’ang 0307, 10:09:20
“Hazriq 05 pun lives smwhere near here. Ada bdk koleq lg ke kt sini? Anyway hv to conserve phone battery. Later.” – 10:10:14
”Glad to know u’r safe. Time to find a new place he he” – Joe 9094, 10:20:02
“Don’t think of the battery situation, will stick to sms. As contingency if communication broke off, I’ll be at giant melawati around 330pm, take care..” – Dany 8690, 10:24:38
“We’ll pray for yr safety. Kena cari rumah lain la pulak!” – Haiza, 10:26:11
“Ye ke? Horror nya. Abg raf turun lar dulu, duduk kat mana2 hotel 4 the time being, sementara tunggu musim hujan stop. Bhy sungguh” – Izzat 0004, 10:27:36
“How’s the situation in bt antarabangsa?” – Nik Nazmi 9599, 10:28:22
“Shud b fine I’ll know whether I cn out by 1 pm” – 10:29:48
“Ok, be safe then” – Dany 8690, 10:30:44
“this is alina, If u need food, my hse byk lg. Come over. 33a, jln l.o. 2/2 laman
oakleaf” – Alina, 10:36:35
“Ha ha x worry. I m thinking of finding ways by foot. Rasanya we r here for a very long time only chopper can access this place. Thnx a lot for the offer :-) Tk cr x worry abt work, we’ll figure that one out” – 10:39:27
“Assm. Takziah. Cg baru tau. Harap akan selesai dgn cpt n selamat.” – Cikgu Umi, 10:44:18
“Wow, another landslide! So worryng.. Hu3, luckily u r alr8..” – Fido 0408, 10:46:35
“What happen to ur house in bukit a’bangsa?” – Emo 0004, 10:49:01
“K u tk care 2. I’ve infrmd Haniss bout d outstanding 4 my cos. Find way out by foot? Careful sket hrd d land still moving. Kang tak berbos gbati :-)” – Alina, 11:01:33
“Bkt Antarabangsa ada tanah runtuh. Kau ok?” – Khalid 9094, 11:01:45
“On 2nd thot, can i get ur auntie’s no? I need to find out which road she’s walking to go to Giant. Thanks u’re a star” – 11:16:28
“Abg raf, ur place affected x?” – Rahmat 0307, 11:43:53
“It’s 300 m frm my place so the whole bukit antarabangsa is trapped. No electricity n x get access. I am packing whatever I can and walk by foot kot. Then someone will pick up. Hey thanks” – 11:52:34
“Canoe call me I need ur help” – 12:00:26
“They’ve cleared sm path so I can walk out. I m waiting for Canoe to pick me up coz I hv to go to office to pick laptop n work. I’ll see you at Giant Melawati around 4 pm? Thanks a lot Dany” – 12:03:56
“Salam, abg raf cne? Efek kat tmpt abg raf x tanah runtuh tu?” – Bean 0004, 12:20:53
“Salam.. Abg raf mcm ner ngan keadaan dkt umah abg raf.. Sy tgk dlm brita ada tanah runtuh..” – Arip 0509, 12:27:09
“Lar kesian abg raf.. So still bley ulang alik or kene tinggal kt len dulu..” – Arip 0509, 12:29:51
“Ha ha no la that’s over reacting. Let things settle. I like this place! Aku nya sentimentality payah nk overcome ha ha” – 12:47:17
“Bro is ur place affected?” – Reza Hatta 8993, 12:58:11
“Abg rough kene pindah ke? Heard ramai kene pindah” – Rashad 0408, 12:59:47
“Memories lepak w jambu je tu ha ha kondo klcc pulak la, high end sikit” – Joe 9094, 1:00:45
“It’s ok chamat canoe will pick me up” – 1:29:06
“Ok. Let me know if u need any help” – Chamat 9094, 1:30:02
“Shud b fine. We hv been asked to evacuate. I hope I can come back here. Sigh. X know when tho ha ha” – 1:30:48
“I am telling u to do the same too. It’s not safe lah” – Chamat 9094, 1:32:37
“R u still trapped? I m watching news @ ntv7. 3 m’ggal” – Haiza, 1:32:57
“One petronas guy still trap there. Pray for Faizal bdk pdb he went to same
orientation. I am walking out pick whatever clothe I can. Not safe n we’ve been
asked to evacuate” – 1:34:02
“Yes, it’s bad. I’m still watching. Selamatkan yr important documents as well.” – Haiza, 1:40:52
“I only take my passport. The rest cn be traced.” – 1:41:28
“Chamat I m ok ha ha camel trophy adventure aku jungle trekking. Canoe dh pick me up” – 2:29:14
“Hai. Nie abg raf ke? I’m azhar n u cn call me zaneq frm class ‚08. I’m interested in actuary. So wat’s next? .. thnx” – Zaneq 0408, 2:30:26
“Hi zaneq, I am a bit occupied coz ranah runtuh kat bukit antarabangsa. Maybe u cn email me” – 2:54:55
“So ko stay mana ni” – Joe 9094, 3:09:40
“Tu la, tgk news sume kene evacuate, x safe. Abes abg raf g mane? Naik ape? Nasib baik insured. Makin kurus r, takyah jogging dah esk, haha” – Bean 0004, 3:13:39
“Hey abg raf. Hav u been evacuated already?” – Haqqa 0206, 3:17:45
“U sure u ok? Just read ur sms. Aku kat kedah balik raya. Bgtau if aku boleh tolong apa2” – Epit 9094, 3:28:36
“Alhadulillah then that u r still alive. What’s gonna happen to ur apartment?” – Haqqa 0206, 3:36:10
“tempat kau kena raf?” – Kalai 9094, 5:30:37
“Salam. Abg raf nie Kwang. Abg raf slamat x?“ – Kwang 0509, 5:42:56
“Ha ha Kwang, aku dh mati. Aku hantar sms dr bawah timbunan. Help! Last thing aku ingt korang x turun training ha ha” – 5:43:49
“Erm… Rumah ok x?” – Kwang 0509, 5:46:30
“I assume u r x affected by d landslide?” – Izrin 9600, 5:49:29
“Abes 2 mlm nie tido kat mana?” – Kwang 0509, 5:51:23
“Owh ok je.. Abg raf tgh blik ganu ke?” – Kwang 0509, 5:55:07
“Askum. Rough, mcm mana keadaan kat kyoto garden? Sihat ke tak? Bekalan makanan ok ke?”- KNO 9094, 8:08:58
“Is it true that u hv 2 move out?” – Amy, 8:24:21
“Abg raf ok ke” – Zulikhwan 0408, 8:30:54
“R u ok? Saw the news abt the tanah runtuh” – Fadli 9094, 8:36:03
“Watching it on news now. Ya, u r so close! Xpe, backpack pun temporary je, lps ni can reunite w ur ikea furnitures (n ur accord :p). Tink u gotta consider other areas la, coz they say there r stil earth movements there. Take care!” – Amy, 8:49:05
“R u ok? Kak rok tanya u kat mana? Just let us know if u need anything” – Haiza, 8:51:24
“At least kau slamat. That’s the most important thing” – Fadli 9094, 9:02:27
“Aku pun br tau td. Dok pusat pemindahan ke?” – Mattop 9094, 9:06:04
“InsyaAllah kete & all ok nnt. Yg plg penting ko slmt. Ni
mak ko doa utk ko blk cepat skit :-) hv a safe journey & kirim salam 2 ur
family. Let me know if there’s anythg I can do ok” – Jita 9094, 9:11:19
“Ko silap. Patut stay kat relief ctr instead of canoe. Kot2 la jumpa future wife haha” – Joe 9094, 9:34:16
“Ha ha pandai la kau. Bini is the last thing on my mind. Aku postpone caleng lepas ni for a week” – 9:35:08
“Mana tau ada awek yg use sex as relief for stress n trauma ha ha” – Joe 9094, 9:37:30
“Hye rough.. abg ok x? lpk kt ne skrng?” – Topoi 0408, 9:53:04
”Saya mendoakan abg raf ok” – Zulikhwan 0408, 10:50:43
”Gud nite. Thank god they evacuated u earlier. Thngs at bkt abgsa are getting worse. Takut tgk” – Fendy 0408, 12:46:05
“How are you? Heard there’s a landslide near your area. Quite bad. If it is bad, hope u r fine there” – Adam 0610 (from London), 7:13:07
“Abg rough, how’re u? Umah abg affected x?” – Abe 0408, 7:49:07
“Owh thank god u’re safe.. Haha.. Cuak gle kowt dgr brite tu.. Now ktne? Xkeje? Byk ke nyamuk kt utan tu? Alaa., kt dh bese jungle trekking kan ha ha” – Abe 0408, 8:34:01
Right after I SMSed Chamat, I put on the jogging gear and went down – only to be greeted with a big signboard “All roads blocked because of landslide” which the Resident Association put in front of the lift. Still I was not that alarmed – because I thought if the main entrance to Bukit Antarabangsa was blocked, I could always use the Ukay Perdana route.
I should have realised by then the sound of siren and of helicopters hovering – and most glaringly cars being parked by the road side heading downhill. But maybe I was so focused on what I needed to do that day – go jogging, come back and clean up, go to work and leave for Kemaman at 9 pm – that I was oblivious to all this. It’s only when the guard told me that I could drive down at all, that I realised something was really wrong.
I walked – one of the hundreds of people walking down the hill converging at the landslide spot – and only when I was there I realised that it was for real. I started to send SMS and could not send too many because after the first few batches were sent, the no of SMSs that came in was a lot more than I could manage.
Then the phone started ringing – Chibiok, Badut, Chamat, Canoe, Pyan and many others. We still could joke about the whole thing – in fact when Chibiok called, I told him that unless he could get me a chopper, there was nothing he could help.
“Tu laaa kau selalu gelak kat Fadhil, masa ni lah kau perlukan helicopter dia. Kalau kau kurang gelak kat dia now dia dh boleh hantar chopper dia airliftkan kau” – Chibiok
Before long it dawned on me that battery would be a problem as the electricity was down. I was also checking the news via Blackberry quite frantically that it must have drained the battery even quicker. Then the preoccupation was to conserve the battery.
Eventually most of us in Bukit Antarabangsa realised that we have to evacuate and by 1 pm the army was all over the place helping people. They have cleared a path through a hill near the top of Bukit Antarabangsa that allowed us to cross to the other side where the access was not blocked.
I have to admit that it was not all gloom and doom – most people actually treated the whole thing as a jungle trekking exercise, joking and taking videos with their camcorders (myself included).
We had to walk about 2 – 3 km before we could reach the other part of Bukit Antarabangsa and that walkabout took us around the hill top that I have never been before. It all made sense by then – the size of the construction taking place was huge! Developers were building huge 3-storey bungalows on the hill top and the construction work continued unabated even when the stream of people recently evacuated walked pass the area.
Canoe was waiting, so I went back to his place. He sent me to office, picked up my work stuff. Canoe then sent me to my rendezvous point with Dany (Class of 90) who had kindly agreed to give me a lift to go back to Terengganu for Eid-ul Adha.
It was only in the car that it dawned on me the uncertainty waiting in front.
I lived in Bukit Antarabangsa by choice, for reasons that are hard to explain. By nature, I am very protective and private – a home in Bukit Antarabangsa offers the privacy and allows me to protect that privacy. Many memorable events took place there too.
Each year we hold a simple gathering after raya for the batch at my place, though others have much bigger houses to hold something like that. We hold tahlil’s at my place. Most of the Mightyducks meetings were held at my place. Debaters converge each year to plan and spend time together at my place. When we have tournaments for hockey or debaters in KL – they prefer to stay at my place, cramped as it was. Many of my batchmates have spent time together at my place because that’s the last few private places they can congregate and act like bachelors.
It’s a sanctuary, a bachelor’s pad – for many people, not just me. The thought that I might have to abandon a place I cherish that much continues to linger.
I was also quite preoccupied with what happened to the few people I know whose house was situated in the landslide-hit area.
There was this one pak cik, by the name of Raja, whom I have always given a lift. I think at some point in his life, he had a mental breakdown. He was always in front of the gate of his house every morning waiting to get a lift, or in the evening walking by himself all the way from MRR to reach home. Once in a while during the weekends, or when I was on the way back from office, I would give him a lift.
After a second ride, I discovered that he was a Malay College old boy – he was very excited when he saw my batch’s car sticker and started telling me that he went to MCKK too. Since I thought he was a bit retarded from the first time I gave him a lift, I didn’t take him seriously – until he started talking about Big School, the houses and all the things that only budak koleq would have known.
I asked him which batch he was from. He said Class of 1968 – so I asked him a few people from Class of 68 who he could still remember, just to vouch. He mentioned Azman Aris, Salehuddin Hashim, Mokhtaruddin and a few others – so it was obvious that he did go to MCKK.
Along the way I understood bit by bit his life story – his story telling was very incongruent because he could not focus on a single train of thoughts, but I got the gist. He was born into somewhat an upper class background; his dad was a Chairman of one of the big banks and previously a senior civil servant, if I am not mistaken. He pursued a career in banking and even spent time working in London. But along the way something happened to his love life that he didn’t seem to recover since. I could relate to that since in our midst too, I know a few people whose path has mirrored his.
That was two years ago. I picked him up once in a while and he would cajole me to buy his poems. Each day we would walk down to get to British Library, or spend his day at Central Market selling his poems. I used to buy his poems a few times – it was about RM20 each. The poem was not much; it was as if giving RM20 to him for pocket money.
The last lift that I gave him was about 2 weeks ago. I still don’t know what happened to him – he’s an old man, broken by the harshness of life in spite of the promises of privileged life at the beginning. It could have happened to anyone of us – each time I looked at him before, it reminded me of the unpredictability of life.
I hope he is alive. The first thing I will do when I am allowed to go back is to search for his card – he claimed he was a professional poet – and remember his full name. And I hope one day I might still see him standing somewhere asking for a lift, so that I could buy him a drink. He is one vivid reminder to me of how fragile life can be.
The other person is a fellow PETRONAS employee by the name of Faizal. He is a few years my junior but we joined the company at the same time, so we went to the same orientation. He was very full of life and excitement to start working (he just graduated), I just got back from UK and had spent the six months prior to the orientation working in PETRONAS already – so my cynicism (which was legendary among the people who know me!) was in its element when I unleashed it during the orientation. In spite of this, he always looked up to me and he continued to write asking for advices until after a year he was in the company. We became very close during the orientation (though we rarely spent time together after that given how anti-social I was!) so I have always had a soft spot for this one junior at work.
I couldn’t take my mind of what could have happened to him. As the news coverage in the afternoon continued to report that a few people were still being trapped; I had feared the worst for him. There was a whole range of sense of guilt – because back in 2005 when I was first transferred to KLCC, he and others always asked me out to join them for lunch or to hang out. Being a privacy freak and anti-social that I was, I never entertained any of the requests, I always had excuses. The thought that I might not see this guy again weighed too heavily in my mind.
But God’s interference always come when you least expected it. Just as I feared the worst for him, I met him by co-incidence when both of us went to the office at the same time that afternoon. I could not describe the relief I felt. He was in Singapore on a business trip when it happened, so he was spared. Only his grandmother was at home, but she escaped with minor injury I was told. He felt too disturbed to be among the people at the place he was putting up so he chose to go to the office instead.
The whole of yesterday also made me realised a few things – one of which is that when tragedy strikes, we are blind to each other’s colours and differences and will always come together to see it through.
For the first time I saw how multiracial was the communities at Bukit Antarabangsa. Each one tried their best to help each other. The army came from Rejimen Askar Melayu Diraja (RAMD) so you can guess they were all Malays – yet they did not hesitate at all, in fact went out of their way to carry the heavier stuffs from some of the non-Malay old folks. It all happened too spontaneously that rarely anyone took notice of the harmony.
When we reached the relief centre, most of the volunteers for the St John’s Ambulance were Chinese and Indians; while other volunteers present were mostly Malays – yet they all worked together to extend help to everyone, in the most astoundingly serene atmosphere I had observed; a complete contrast from the continuous racial undertones played by the politicians from all races lately.
The first person who frantically called me after the news got out and offered me a place to stay was in fact Bhupinder Singh – the Tax Partner for Ernst & Young Malaysia with whom I have become close over the last 2 years.
Out of this tragedy, personally my faith in the future of race relations in Malaysia was renewed – that there is hope after all despite the never ending bickering among the politicians that pushed the people more and more into isolation, segregation and identification by race. All that it could have taken to mend things is for the political leadership from both divides to concentrate on issues that can bring people together, not the ones which divide and isolate us to identify ourselves with our respective race stronger and stronger. Tragedy, ironically, is one such issue that has the swift effect of putting all the differences aside.
Going through the SMSs and remembering my other pre-occupations yesterday, I also realised how misguided my priorities in life were. During the early hours, I was hell bent on figuring out how to get electricity supply and laptop – so that I could do work. I was not that bothered that the whole place was no longer safe, so long I could sit down and do the work – never mind the food, never mind being cut off, never mind that I could be sitting on a moving ground! That I have a bunch of my staff waiting for instruction in office; and my mind was fixated on concluding one big annual exercise that I have to lead in 2 weeks’ time (so everything has to be executed in a precise and timely manner) – was the top 3 considerations I had in my mind all that morning. Something is definitely wrong when you place work deliverables above your own personal safety and I have no one else but myself to blame for that. That warrants a long reflection when the dust settles.
I also felt very bad that I have to leave the place without lending a hand to the relief efforts. There’s a lot of work that has to be done to do the headcounts, ensure all urgent need is attended to – they need as many volunteers as possible. But I am torn in between going back to see the parents to comfort them that all is well, the very important responsibility in office that I cannot abdicate without letting my staff down and the desire to do something so that I don’t feel selfish in the midst of all the rubbles. However it didn’t take long before I concluded that while the first two responsibilities are about looking after other people, the desire to volunteer stems from the selfish motive to rid myself of the guilty feeling. Once you decide, you just have to live with that decision.
What will happen to Bukit Antarabangsa is uncertain. Because a lot of what this batch carries out together as a batch involves me, Bukit Antarabangsa also features quite frequently among us – on top of the fact that 3 of us (myself, Harrie and Fazurin) are residents of Bukit Antarabangsa.
Bukit Antarabangsa also features very prominently in my personal planning with Syed Asrul and Pejal. I had wanted to achieve a complete financial independence in the next 2 years so that I could pursue things on my own with Syed and Pejal – Bukit Antarabangsa is smacked right in the middle of that consideration.
Everything is now uncertain.
John Lennon is so right when he wrote “life is what happens to you while you are busy making other plans”.
Monday, November 24, 2008
2) Jadi posting ni nak bagi update je lah yang telah dan akan berlaku.
3) Jita dapat anak lelaki bulan lepas – namanya Adlan Muhamad Azrul Roshazli. Sampai sekarang aku tak pergi tengok2 lagi, padahal lunch ngn Jita everyday. Last month anak dia kat Melaka, la ni dah balik, then boleh lah pi visit kot.
4) Toy nak kahwin this weekend, hari Sabtu kat Bukit Damansara. Terharu jugak aku dapat SMS mintak address then dapat kad; tapi malangnya aku kat Myanmar la pulak masa tu. So tak leh lah nak buat wedding review – aku rasa kena sub con kerja ni kat KNO kot (tp bagi kat KNO dia review food ngn gambar2 je lah). Ramai orang ternanti-nanti wedding la ni, sbb good excuse nak reunion – sbb dah x ramai yg kahwin la ni.
5) Ada berita yang sedih sikit – to those yg tak tahu, Harrie’s wife has been suffering from cancer for a while, so they spent most of their time in and out of hospital. I found out recently that it didn’t get better and she might have to go through a bone-marrow operation real soon. Let’s see what can we do about this – at least some moral and financial support where possible (err sapa AJK Batch benda2 macam ni? Ke ini untuk tindakan AJK Batch Keselamatan Internet jugak?)
6) Economic/financial crisis pun ada tempias nya. Ha ha for one, Fadli tengah menangis tengok ESOP/shares dia dalam GE tumbling down – so mintak belanja ngan Fadli lately sensitive skit. I haven’t heard any stories of retrenchment but I am not surprised if there is any. So tolong forward2 kan lah CV mana yang patut – or kalau susah sangat, boleh tolong kerja sembelih ayam kat kilang Radin kat Nilai ha ha.
7) It is also the time when people start making a different career move. I have received a lot of CVs exploring different opportunities from the current employment. So far that I know of – Joe and Allen are leaving for different companies. Joe has had enough with GE (citer zaman2 homesick cabut lari NH balik rumah jugak la ni) and Allen is leaving Carigali (for which company I don’t know). Again – sapa2 yg boleh tolong open up different opportunities, by all means please do.
8) Also on financial crisis – I am not sure whether people realize that Fazurin is now with IMF in Washington. Ha ha so lepas ni kalau ada some weird or controversial IMF rescue package (more like blood sucking package), sila2 lah blame Fazurin.
9) Hari Jumaat ni seperti biasa Sessi yang ke-? (errr aku dah lost count). If you have time, boleh lah join majlis ilmu especially pada usia yg makin lanjut [seronok je aku tulis sbb aku ada alibi, di Myanmar]
10) Nazri Khan Adam Khan (Nazerq Class of 92) added me on Facebook. Ha ha this is the one person responsible for making Fazurin and I jadi alim sikit masa F3. Dia dorm aku dulu, aku rasa dia jalan tak pijak tanah. Memang respek betul2 pagi2 dia dah bangun pegi masjid, lepas tu any free time dia baca Quran and mulut terkumat-kamit etc. Sbb inspired by Nazerq la aku pun selalu gak tak tinggal masjid and pi ngaji kitab. Akhir tahun, aku ngan Fazurin pun buat lah janji kat surau nak jaga BRU betul2. Lepas tu Nazerq tak de, dah tak de budak BRU jalan tak pijak tanah – the rest is history la kan. So it was a nice “walk done the memory lane” tengok ada request from Nazerq – dia pun financial analyst; so ala2 hantu sistem kapitalis riba macam aku and Fazurin jugak ha ha.
11) Wong pergi haji this year – tp kesian sbb bos dia insists dia bawak blackberry and laptop nak jawab email each day, kalau x tak dapat cuti. Ha ha sure Wong tengah cari wi-fi kat Makkah la ni. Dia dah mintak maaf ngn batch – tp dia x mintak maaf ngn cikgu2 and HM koleq sbb dia curi line telephone diorang call Jepun masa 94 dulu. Tu tak campur yg pecah masuk AVA room lagi tu.
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
There are so many things that are worth writing that I don’t know where to begin. I had wanted to take a bit longer to structure my thoughts but that kind of deadline may get this blog being struck off from KNO’s listing (kesian aku demam2 kena tulis blog)
But let’s start with the most important part (which usually is relegated to the bottom) – the thank you note.
This entry (which I suspect will be very long) is dedicated first and foremost to the beloved wives and children whose understanding had made it possible all along for a bunch of common people to touch people’s lives in ways that we could not even imagine when we conceived the idea about two years ago. For their empathy that the regular Joes (that is us, the Bapak Itiks) also need some fulfilment in our lives that goes beyond our immediate selfish interest to appreciate the greater meaning of life – to feel that we have made a difference albeit a very minute one.
The list shall be as follows:
To Ruby – for allowing Mpro to come all the way from Melaka (and punching a big hole in his lung along the way from the non-stop smoking so I was told) despite the difficulties
To Aily – for the understanding that it is a journey that Epit wants to be a part of (ha ha taichi balik kat Epit); and the offer to host the next MigDuck’s meeting
To Ayu – for the support (to the point that Idzam could leave for a tournament on your child’s birthday) and the sandwich to keep the Big Boys awake throughout the journey
To Rohaida – for all the attendance to the games (when possible) and for waking up to keep the Big Boys in company on the way to Manjung
To Red – for the obsession with the kids (maybe more than our own obsession) and the cupcakes that brought joy to the boys (both Big and small ha ha)
To all the wives and children who understand all along that this is an escape from the harsh reality of life that all of us need once in a while, to recharge and remember what innocence means when we were all young.
[Dengan dedikasi panjang lebar ini, saya sebagai Penyimpan Mohor Besar meminta kebenaran bagi pihak suami-suami sekalian untuk menyertai program perkhemahan/team building tahunan yang akan diadakan dalam bulan Januari 2009 ini. He he].
Secondly, the dedication goes to all the Bapak2 Itik for the journey. It was not the joke, not the food, not that everything was so well executed to the precise way we wanted it, nor the spontaneity of chemistry that reminds us what a wonderful 18 years it has been that made last weekend so special. It is the realisation that this journey has brought us so close together so much so that we just know there will be someone who will catch us when we fall. It’s the unconditional trust and openness which I cannot quantify or describe here. You just have to be a part of the Bapak2 Itik to understand how far we have come as friends through this journey – the mutual love and respect we develop for each other; through the mutual love we channel to a bunch of kids we picked up.
[Dengan dedikasi panjang lebar versi kedua ini, bolehlah kita mula bekerja kembali untuk program seterusnya. He he]
Now let’s get to the details.
We’ll start with the drama.
“… kalau tak de drama, bukan Mighty Ducks la tu namanya..”
Dramanya makin bertambah dari tahun ke tahun.
Thank God I was too busy with office that I missed some of the drama only to notice once I go through our mailing list – but by that time all had been solved so there was one less drama of my panicking unnecessarily.
Most of the drama started around 28/29 October (biasa la last minute planning).
Oct 29, 230 pm:
“aku tak mau sibuk urusan teknikal - tapi bola ada kah? takut terlupa yang paling penting.”
Oct 29, 545 pm:
“badut ko ada match ball tak ? saper ader weiiiii”
Oct 29, 546 pm:
“nanti aku beli....”
Tapi dalam sibuk-sibuk dok remind pasal bola, and walaupun Badut dah berjanji nak beli match ball – entah macam mana Janji Tinggal Janji. Bersusah payah lah team logistic mencari match ball di Manjung, nasib baik ada kedai ala-ala Sin Wah KK yang jual match ball and belum tutup untuk sembahyang Jumaat.
Episod seterusnya, juga melibatkan Badut.
Oct 30, 932 am:
“guys aku ada berita buruk......... first and foremost....
1) Piala aku tak jumpa....tak mana aku letak kat mana ....dah cari merata-rata but will keep on searching...ada back up plan tak?
2) Mana chibix?..dia pegi tak?”
Oct 30, 941 am:
“Sdr PTD hafiznizam, boleh usha kat Alamanda?”
Oct 30, 1046 am:
“kejap lagi aku pegi - aku belasah jugak badut ni karang...”
Maka kelam-kabutlah si Epit mencari cup yang baru dengan budget yang sangat terhad, kerana cup last year Badut dah hilangkan!
Malam tu team logistic (Epit, Mpro, Idzam, Pak Tuan and Chibiok, team technical yang menumpang) plan nak bertolak. Mpro bertolak dari Melaka around 8-ish and was supposed to pick Epit, Idzam, Chibiok and Pak Tuan along the way.
Little that they know somewhere in KLCC another drama was about to unfold.
Oct 30, 1916 SMS:
“Salam..Abg raf nie arip.. Abg raf siang td kitaowg anta list name lmbt sket kt ckg.. So ckg ckp maybe program nie xleh wat kt manjung n mayb bwat kt k.K.. Lg 1 kalo bley bwat kt manjung pown, mayb postp0ne coz nk mintak kt PPD dlm mase 2 arie nie dh xsempat k0t.. (-,-)”
As you can expect, I picked up the phone and made full use of the crappy weeks at the office to muster the worst and pugnacious outburst (so far) to the poor teacher, who was just a messenger. In no uncertain term – the message was clear. Since this was repeating a wee bit too frequently lately, I could no longer justify the purpose of the whole project to my colleagues. If the boys were not going to be in Manjung 9 am the next morning, consider it the last time my group will ever lend any assistance to any MCKK team.
It was a big decision (and threat) to make – because there was more at stake than the Mighty Ducks project. If the relationship sours with the school because of this, I will have to say goodbye to the debaters and some other programs I conduct annually at MCKK. The thought of making the decision without consulting others brought about some sense of guilt initially, yet I thought we had to put our foot down.
Oct 30, 1958 SMS:
“Well itu decision koleq. Aku dh ckp kat cikgu XXXX, kalau x jd or postpone kitorng semua give up ngn koleq. X de mighty ducks project dah lepas ni. Kitorng dh x balik. Tiap2 tahun mcm ni last year pun aku kena maki hamun jugak”
But we were saved by the act of one teacher, who was bold enough to go the extra mile to make sure that Mighty Ducks Cup did take place. When in normal circumstances, some other teachers (given the harsh words over the phone that I threw) would just leave it at that and dealt a death blow to the project, this one particular teacher took personal initiative to call the HM, explained the situation and in the wee hours arranged for a bus to take the boys to Manjung.
By 11+ pm I called him to receive the good news.
Meanwhile, unknown to me Badut (who was the first I updated at around 8+) had been calling everyone else to inform of the bad news (except Mpro who was already on the way from Melaka) and to ‘plot’. I guess Badut was not convinced that I would have the heart to quit on the boys when we gather to decide what to do if the program was cancelled, so he called everyone to “fix” the vote ha ha.
(Each time they want to do something drastic, they would gang up behind my back to present a unified stand when we take a vote. I wonder whether that was the case when we voted for “Most Handsome Player” the other day ha ha)
Fortunately we didn’t have to go through any of that because by 11 pm it was back to normal and all the threats came to nothing. But we were an inch from stopping the project last Thursday.
Idzam had a drama on his own. The banner was supposed to be ready by 6 pm on 30 October – but around 5 pm he received a call saying that it was impossible to get the banner done by then. After a series of curses and shouting, the shop finally reverted to the original delivery time ha ha.
By 12 midnight last Thursday, all went back to normal and Epit, Mpro, Idzam, Pak Tuan and Chibiok were having fun on the way to Manjung, while the rest of us were so looking forward to the weekend we could barely sleep.
MIGHTY DUCKS CUP
Everything was good in almost every way.
We went early to the stadium and unlike last year, there was no surprises. We had the big stadium all to ourselves. Everyone went quickly to do what was our job – putting the banner, kain rentang, PA system etc.
The boys arrived promptly as well – ha ha maybe to avoid another shouting match, I was told the bus was definitely above speed limit all the time.
Even the boys’ games were much better than what we previously had seen. Some of us had lost hope to win any competition in the next 2-3 years, but looking at the F1s and F2s they were really good. For once we saw players who have the natural flair as a hockey player. There was this one F1 player by the name of Afi who would definitely make it to the U18 team next year and he gave us the run for our money during the testimonial match (but that doesn’t say much about us in the first place, a bunch of fat people trying to run on the field). The old boys lost 1-0 this year, a reverse of last year’s result.
The boys behaved a lot better than last year and it was easier to control them. I guess they are much closer to us now as a result of the trust builtover the last 2 years. After all we had been with them for each of their game, stayed up at the hospital when they broke their arm and did all the things we thought we were never capable of. I can confidently say that from the boys’ perspective, there is nothing that we need to prove anymore.
The games got better after the lunch, thanks to quite a heavy lunch with KFC. Things proceeded smoothly all the way to the testimonial match, in fact we had the leisure of being ahead of schedule because the boys were so efficient for each game.
Every year, when all was over, we would adjourn to a restaurant hidden somewhere along the Manjung – Teluk Intan trunk road. One of the best seafood restaurants I have been to, so we make it a point to eat there each year. And take opportunity for a post mortem too, since it will be hard to gather everyone after that.
It was also the best AGM ever. We were focused, frank and less distracted compared to before (there were jokes, muqaddimah etc but everyone got back to the topic quickly). For the first time, the unison in the opinions made and decisions reached astounded me.
There was a lot of discussion about what we should concentrate for next year. All was in agreement that as the boys had delivered their part of the bargain i.e. to behave and accept us as a part of them, we can no longer hold their behaviour against them to put off any discussion on actual technical training (which they have been clamouring all this while). Next year will see some intensive efforts to coach them on the technical skills – as I think Epit’s and my job is done. There’s very little that we could do in terms of team building after this, apart from attending to their day to day teenage’s angst (e.g. jambu tak layan, fail exam, kena kejar dengan warden etc.)
But the biggest portion of the AGM was on succession planning.
Succession planning is one of the things that really haunts us, because we cannot see us doing this beyond 2010. We all have to move on to other things by then and if we do not line up people who can take over, it will be a shame that the love, sweat and toil poured in for the last 3-4 years (by then) will go to waste.
I will not share the nitty gritty of the discussion here. Only the principles of what was discussed – because that frank discussion, was the best part of the weekend. That all of us were on the same page on why we are doing this.
We agreed that we will not pass this to anyone unless we are sure those after us will mirror the values that we hold so dear, as it is these values that we strive so hard to inculcate in the boys. In someone’s words – “we brought up these boys up in our image”. Someone else gave an analogy – “it’s like even if we are desperate for a maid, we will not go and take just any maid because it is our kid that we are talking about”.
In the end, we all agreed that we shall enjoy the journey and take it one day at a time. We are doing something good, so despite the toll it takes on our time and money, we shall not underestimate God’s intervention. Help shall come when we least expect it, so we shall not be so hung up about drawing an exit strategy. The focus should be on the boys, not on the exit strategy.
With that understanding, we headed for KL at around midnight on 1st November, after what was certainly one of the best weekends of our life this year.
I have been to many places around the world, seen many things – but nothing beats the serenity of being around the people you cherish most, doing the simplest things in life. Many people will not understand why one would rush all the way back from Europe, or China for this one little tournament – but I wouldn’t have traded it with any paid trip to anywhere in the world.
Cupcakes – Red and Badut decided to make special cupcakes for the boys, with a hockey stick and a ball design on top of the cakes. It was very sweet (the act of giving the cupcakes, not the cupcakes itself), though the cupcakes inadvertently dented Badut’s reputation further after a series of mishaps this year.
(According to Badut, the cupcakes were a replacement for the cup that he lost. But I have it on record that the cupcakes were a replacement for the cake that we brought during their Annual Dinner, since the cake was too small to feed everyone).
Chibiok’s comment: “Badut lagi teruk – aku 10 cakap 11 tak leh percaya. Badut belum cakap lagi dah tak leh percaya”
In-flight entertainment – I really didn’t know what happened in the car for the logistic team, but the rest of us had to put up with one day long of recital of dialogues from Ayat-Ayat Cinta; followed by outbursts of laughter that the rest couldn’t understand. Antara perkataan-perkataan yang selalu digunakan termasuklah rapist dan techno.
Fixtures – cubaan menggunakan Excel spreadsheet oleh 3 akauntan untuk jadual pertandingan, yang menguji kesabaran mereka yang bukan akauntan. Akhirnya spreadsheet itu tidak digunakan langsung. Tidak ada cubaan untuk menggunakan random number generator pada kali ini.
Homestay – The Chief Logistic Officer (Pak Tuan) had decided that we stay at a homestay this year – a venue of many scenes that I cannot describe here for fear of jeopardising permissions to attend future programs.
Romance – Mpro and Chibix berpegang tangan melintas jalan.
Taste masa kini – We had a tough time deciding who was the most handsome player this year. Mpro staunchly lobbied for Manram (which we took as a joke initially), my attempt to put forward either Holland or Farid was in vain. Suddenly Badut (out of nowhere) proposed Asyif – which eventually received the majority votes that day (I had a feeling Badut fixed the voting before we started). When put to a vote among the boys, Mpro’s candidate won hands down (ha ha) validating that his penchant for the tanned and tainted seems to be in synch with the flavour nowadays – it’s chocolate not vanilla (sigh).
Budget – aku kena marah dengan Pak Tuan kerana tak mahu menggunakan botol2 air kosong untuk di refill di tepi jalan. Aku ingat nak beli je air mineral baru kat Giant, malangnya Pak Tuan kecewa dengan keborosan aku dan mengambil keputusan pergi isi air sendiri kat tepi jalan.
Prize fixing – I bought a souvenir for the captain in Paris, so we had decided to give him the Best Player Award even before the game began. Unfortunately the jury disagreed as he was quite temperamental during the games and his team ended at 4th placing. So it was too obvious if the best player award still goes to him – in the end, Idzam came up with one award reminiscent of the most ridiculous award ever given in MCKK during our time: “Anugerah Sahsiah Terpuji” (originally went to Champ on 14 November 1994).
To the best of team mates in the Mighty Ducks – what is written here is not as meaningful as what is invisibly written in our life of our regards for each other, for the boys and for the project. I wish that one day when we look back as we move along in life, we realise why MCKK is so important to us – because MCKK gives us this special meaning of what it is like to be in a company of like-minded people with a unison of purpose, who would have put ourselves in the line of fire for each other.
Dramatic and cliche – yet that is exactly what Mighty Ducks was all about so far. May the coming years will be as serene as this.
Mighty Ducks Cup 2008 are:
Ketua Pengarah (KP) – Mpro
Timbalan Ketua Pengarah (TKP) – Epit
Penolong Timbalan Ketua Pengarah (PTKP), T-Shirt, Banner dan Hadiah – Idzam (and Radin)
PTKP, Logistic – Pak Tuan
PTKP, Technical – mulanya Badut, tetapi ala2 dirampas kuasa oleh Chibiok
PTKP, Sijil dan Kejohanan – KNO
PTKP, Hubungan Luar – Ruff
Penolong2 Ketua Pengarah (PKP) – Joe, Chamat, Canoe, Wong
I wrote this at a time when I am re-evaluating my life and career priorities. Looking back, without Mighty Ducks and an array of other things we do outside the normal confine of our routine life, I would have lost the will to continue so many years back. But putting a smile on the face on innocent people who do not understand yet how mean the world can be to them when they grow up – reminds us how it was back then. Because you need to earn to continue to put a smile on these boys’ faces, we wake up the next day forgetting how we wish we were dead the day before.
Photos: Epit, KNO, Facebook, Other Blogs: KNO, Mpro & Epit (video will come later)
Monday, November 03, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Mula-mula sessi tahunan Silent Hours. Langsung tak silent lah. Kehadiran kurang berbanding tahun-tahun lepas atas alasan berikut:
"Sorry la brader keter aku rosak la" - Mttop
(sebelum tu elok2 je pi office masa weekend ada kerja lah, itu lah, tiba2 keter rosak)
"Sorry brader aku ingat nak naik motor tiba2 hujan pulak" - Buncit
(tapi sebab Buncit yg cakap ni aku percaya la, batak punya pasal Buncit sanggup meredah lautan api)
"Sorry brader mak sedara aku sakit la" - La'ba
(he he yang ni aku rasa authentic kot)
"Sorry brader aku kat Italy la" - Syam
(rekod kehadiran baik, so kira authentic la ni)
.... dan macam-macam sorry brader yg lain.
Dalam diam2 pulak Badut pi sambung lecture (more like maki hamun) dengan anak2 itik Form 4. Marah Stadium Bukit Jalil tak habis lagi ha ha. Dalam keter 10 kali lebih Badut dok ulang dia puas hati boleh maki.
Red pun puas hati boleh main2 dengan anak itik kesayangan dia :-p
Masa Silent Hours, kitorang managed to pau sampai RM300+ tapi tarak cukup ha ha. Tunggu lah SMS dari kitorang, masing2 dah ada KPI berapa banyak nak kena collect.
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Almost one year ago, I received the news of his untimely death when I was in HCMC, almost one week after Raya too.
During last year’s Raya, I sent a lot of SMS to the people from MCKK who were close to me, especially when I felt we had drifted apart. I sent one such SMS to one of Shahrol’s batchmate from Class of 93:
“Oit XXXXX i know we went thru rough patches lately. 4 whatever it was worth I always think how u r masa raya2 ni n I nvr 4 once 4get what u hv done 4 me n d kids. Went thru some old pix of d db8ers when it was a lot happier – n I thot I owe u dis sms”
Unfortunately, for whatever reasons (mostly taking him for granted all along because you always thought he would be around for you forever) I didn’t even reply Shahrol’s raya SMS last year.
The next SMS I received from his handphone was when I was in HCMC:
“Raf, shahrol dah tak ada. Dia meninggal pkl 6 pg”
There was a series of SMS as it began to dawn that the unthinkable had happened:
“Ko buat joke ke apa? Oit joke jgn la joke mcm ni.”
“Aku dpt sms ni frm shahrol no. Aku call tp x dpt. Cn u check - Raf, shahrol dah tak ada. Dia meninggal pkl 6 pg”
“I feel that I ll never know how to feel ur feeling coz I m not in ur shoes. But, be strong his soul will be remained in a better place up there”
“Abg XXX jgn seedy sgt.. Walaupon sy x knl allahyarham, tp sy phm perasaan kehilangan sorang tmn tok slamenya.. We are still being given a chance 2 breath on diz earth, so we’ve 2 use it wisely.. We just can pray 4 his goodness there.. Alfatihah”
“B storng abg XXXX. I know it must b very hard on u to lose abg shahrol. All I can say is hav faith in God’s judgment. Allah syg kat dia.. ada hikmah 4 all of us behind dis. insyaAllah..”
“I noe dat abg shahrol n abg ben r very special to u, which is why it must be so hard 4 u. jz hang in dere abg XXXXX..”
“Time passes by, raf, and may soon overtake us. But the love is constant and only goes stronger. Even when I am gone, I will watch over you as full of pride at you as I have always been.”
“Was going thru my intray. Just saw the raya kad from shahrol to me and nasu..”
A death of a loved one, should change us as a person. Shahrol’s passing changed me a lot – the way I look at life, the ambitions I used to have, the urgency on things I did not think were urgent before and many others.
I am sure that each time someone we love leaves us forever, we would make many promises to honour him/her. I too had made many promises to myself – some I managed to keep, some I couldn’t (or was too lazy and got carried away).
I managed to wear the MCKK tie more oftenly after his death (because that was his present to me to compel me to wear since I was initially not keen on MCKK tie), but I haven’t even started compiling all his videos and photos which I wanted to give to his little children, so that they know what a wonderful human being their father was in his life when they grow up.
I reactivated some contacts from the previous life as an activist as how he would have wished (he was whining all the time that I chose to walk away from what I was meant to do in life), yet he would have frowned if he had known that I have had plans to walk away from some other things (yet again).
But such is life – it’s a mixture of stories and baggage that we carry with us. The older we are, the more baggage we have. Yet the baggage can sometimes be a blessing in disguise – as it will always remind us of the place we have been and the people we were.
So, as much as Hari Raya most probably will continue to remind me of all the promises to Shahrol that I have not kept – at least that “baggage” will ensure I will never forget him.
Good luck Shahrol, I hope other people remember you as much as I do. We pray that you will be blessed all the time with His bounties, for the kindness you had extended throughout your life.
Allahyarham Shahrol Nizam Yusoff passed away on 22 October 2007 at the age of 31. He left behind a widow, 3 girls and a boy who was born 2 weeks after he passed away. He was a librarian, a debater, used to play basketball in his junior years, was in Dorm 19 West Wing and a Sulaiman House debater in his junior and senior years. Received a scholarship from PETRONAS to do A-Level at Hurstpierpoint College, UK before reading Accountancy at Lancaster University.
He was very active in MCOBA as one of Ballgreave Ballers and served in CCD Committee. He continued to coach MCKK’s debaters until his untimely death.
Sunday, October 05, 2008
Mighty Ducks is going into high gear again after a break of a few months.
When we started out, KNO abused his presence on the blogging world and self-declared that the target is Perak Champ in 2010. Perak Champ because HE thought we were not that bad and it was achievable (assuming we were in the same league with Anderson and Clifford ha ha), 2010 because we never planned to do this for long ha ha.
Almost 2 years later, I now seize the initiative to declare that not in this world and the world after that we can become Perak Champ in 2010! Not when we don't even have a Form 1 hockey team in spite this being end of the year already.
But rain or shine, the show must go on (and it has been raining a lot lately ha ha). I guess after a while it is no longer about the targets, more about the kids and the people you meet along the way. So the next show is Mighty Ducks Cup (MCKK's annual close tournament held in Stadium Astroturf Manjung - why Manjung? Read last year's write up), then the annual BBQ with the boys (which we hope we shall crown the new "most handsome", the new "paling selebet" etc among hockey players), then the USM International Hockey tournament (don't even think about the results ha ha). All this in preparation for next year's season, starting with the MSSD's tournament, National SBP Cup and finally in June/July Premier Cup (plus the annual friendlies with RMC and PFS).
And we need money. Lots of money.
We will be going around asking for money from the batch members (don't even think of running away) - when you come to the batch's open house in 2 weeks' time I will give RM2 to your kid, but I expect at least RM50 in return for the kids in KK (ha ha betul2 Yahudi Bapak2 Itik ni).
For a start, Awie has generously prepared this promo video.
Aku berdosa besar dengan Epit, lihat komen di Foyer, excerpt-nya (excerpt apa semua lift bulat2 di sini) seperti di bawah.
kah kah kah awie...mula2 masa aku tngok video - my impression was:
"ni epit buat, patut corny semacam"
into one minute and aku still ckp - sngt lah corny.
Lepas tu aku tengok:
"eyhhh awie yg buat, ni rakan kongsi kartun aku"
So tibe2 je perception aku berubah:
SUNGGUH BERKUALITI KLIP INI, SO AKAN JADI KLIP RASMI MIGHTY DUCKS MINTAK DUIT.
ps: The "Biar PUTEH tulang" kat belakang is
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Time flies too quickly lately (and the hair thins even quicker). It feels as if yesterday that we conducted the annual workshop on scholarship for 0307, now it’s been a year.
Finding a date to lock is always a challenge – the amount of activities, seminars and others that the boys have to go through nowadays makes our life back then looked like a stroll in the park. We had to settle for 20 September 2008 despite my schedules which were quite packed that weekend – so it had to be a one day event (it always took 2 days in the previous years).
I personally have a soft spot with this batch – 0408 (tak de kena mengena dgn their physical appearance; in case Haji Botchap jumps on the opportunity to make a mess down here) because it is a batch that I have followed since they were in Form 1. I have known the debaters since they were in Form 1 and the hockey players were the first batch that we truly look after in full. They were many other boys that we come across at PPM etc.
Apart from the torture of having to speak and stand for close to 7 hours during Ramadhan (and with only 3 hours sleep before, leaving KL at 5 am), the rest went well. I had to cut short many modules and doing a workshop during Ramadhan for boys is always challenging (understandably they were tired) – but all in all whatever major messages that needed to be parted to them, all was covered.
Two previous Headboys (Rozairee Class of 06 and Aleng Class of 07) followed me (or more like forced to follow me) and they helped a lot. My concern was whether we have enough people to do this – with the right skill and knowledge – when I eventually call it a day. It does feel weird that each year you see a batch leaving koleq yet you are exactly at the same spot you were.
Like previous years, they were some boys who chose not to attend – small number but enough to irk some of us who put this together. I have done this year in and year out – it’s inevitable that some choose to “give up” even before the battle begins. We can never save everyone – the beauty of this life is that help, when extended to people who want to help themselves, will have the multiplier effect whose result is beyond our own imagination. Liberation only unlocks the freedom of mind and body only to those who want to be liberated, so we learnt in this life over and over again. So to whoever who one day might continue this – don’t despair; MCKK was never made great by the majority; it’s the minority who achieved greatness and brought greatness to MCKK.
My best wishes to Class of 0408 – another batch leaves the MCKK gates. May they do wonders and do justice to the five years they were there, just as the people before them had done.
Monday, September 22, 2008
Sebelum nasib aku menjadi sama seperti Pak Lah (iaitu menghadapi tekanan dari pelbagai pihak) sebab lambat menulis blog Pesta Sahur Class of 94, terpaksalah aku ponteng kerja nak update blog.
Things worth noting from last weekend's Pesta Sahur:
TRICK OF THE NIGHT
Epit janji tahun depan kita tak kacau malam 10 terakhir Ramadhan ha ha. But it was good catching up, I personally was too tired to eat or to talk much, since I was awake for the last 24 hours by then and had to endure 9 hrs of standing and speaking in Hargreaves Hall masa bulan puasa, before driving back all the way to catch up with the sahur event.
On a different note - Jita could not make it last minute because his wife delivered a baby boy that night :-)
ps: Calon utama nak kena buang batch - Bobo @ E81. Aku call dia malam tu sbb dia janji nak dtng, dia tak angkat. Esok pagi dpt sms "alamak sorry tertido, aku baru bangun ngn wahida he he" pukul 11 pagi.
More photos here
Sunday, September 14, 2008
2) Pesta Sahur ini telah melebihi 10 kali diadakan tiap-tiap tahun.
3) Tahun ini Pesta Sahur akan diadakan di Hotel Concorde pada pagi 21 September (Ahad minggu depan). Silalah datang, kalau tak peluang nama anda akan masuk senarai yang no dobinya bakal dilelong menjadi semakin tinggi.
4) Semalam ada prelude kepada Pesta Sahur, tetapi melibatkan Bapak2 (dan Mak) Itik. Yang empunya diri bersama-sama Teruna Tertua KNO bersantai bersama-sama En JoeHari-Mau (yang dah jadi jet setter pusing keliling dunia sejak bekerja dengan syarikat terbesar dunia) dan En Badut dan isterinya Puan Badut.
5) Alasannya nak membincangkan mengenai Anak-anak Itik di Kuala, memandangkan Mighty Ducks Cup makin dekat. Kemudian ada pertandingan USM Open iaitu kejohanan hoki terbesar di Malaysia. Lagipun dah lama kami abaikan mereka, sebab nak berikan sedikit pengajaran selepas pelbagai krisis yang berlaku sebelum ini.
6) Muqadimahnya mengambil masa 4 jam, hanya pada pukul 2 pagi perbincangan sebenar bermula. Nasib baik En dan Pn Badut tidak mempunyai anak-anak Badut di rumah.
7) Rasanya begini jugalah jadinya dengan Pesta Sahur nanti – kalau pun ada sebarang perbincangan serius yang hendak dibuat, muqadimahnya akan mengambil masa yang panjang. Muqadimah ini selalunya berkisar kepada perkara kutuk mengutuk yang telah diulang berulang kali.
8) Jadi sama-sama kita mengeratkan silaturrahim di Pesta Bersahur minggu depan, di sini disertakan gambar-gambar dari Pesta Bersahur tahun lepas. Gambar-gambar diambil dari Power Point presentation Fadli yang saiznya meletupkan Kotak Surat kami dan berlatar belakangkan warna biru senantiasa.
9) Penulisan blog kali ini menggunapakai cara Che Det.
Nama Pesta Sahur ini telah dibantah oleh bakal Ahli Parlimen bebas Bukit Bendera dari parti “Aku Hanya Seorang Pendatang” (nyanyikan ala-ala Franscesca Peter) iaitu Tn Syed Khalid – kerana Pesta itu seolah-olah menggambarkan perkara-perkara yang tidak membawa manfaat dan mengundang dosa.
En Hafiznizam selaku penganjur cepat-cepat menafikan dia pernah berkata demikian. Mujur sekarang tidak lagi ada sesiapa yang dikenakan ISA kerana perkara ini.
Laman web ini ditukar sedikit konfigurasinya sebagai menerima kritikan dari Sdr Awie Kartun Lidi yang tak sudah-sudah mengomel mengenai penatnya jari-jarinya terpaksa scroll dari kiri ke kanan.
I first met YM Raja Petra from afar in 1992, he was the emcee for the Old Boys Weekend Annual Concert in Hargreaves Hall that year. I remember him commented out loud that Nahar Hakimi (Class of 92) was quite a jambu when introducing the present boys’ band to the crowd.
Our path crossed again because of what happened in 1998. It was a co-incidence really – I was in the UK and was already doing some groundwork contacting MPs etc. to highlight the issues in the UK and Europe, he needed help with Free Anwar Campaign. He needed a writer; someone to feed him news constantly and as he correctly expected – one day he would need a spare webmaster when he eventually is arrested under ISA.
We never met until I came back in 2003, but we were constantly in touch. I called him, he SMS me and when the going got tough for his family here, Pete and Kak Marina decided to send their two sons to the UK to try to make a living. I helped place them with a keADILan supporter in Manchester, a very nice chap by the name of Abang Saufi who tried their level best to make life easy for the two boys, knowing the sacrifice that their parents were doing in Malaysia (and life was tough financially for Pete at the time).
You see, we were the unwanted lot those days – nobody wanted to associate let alone help anyone with a keADILan tag on their forehead; so 2-3 of us had to look after each other.
When he was taken in in 2001, we had agreed before hand that “the show must go on” (maybe in tribute to hockey team’s mantra “Rain or Shine” ha ha). For 52 days I was manning the Free Anwar Campaign website from London, the news kept on flowing despite Pete’s arrest. Until now I chuckled once in a while how it must have baffled them then that there was a back up and Pete’s arrest did not shutdown the website.
Luckily Pete was released after 52 days – it was a great relief. First, because we were all concerned about his safety. Second, I began to fret if he were to be detained under the customary 2-year sentence in Kamunting and I would have to maintain the website for longer than necessary (those days you have to use Dreamweaver to come up with the html page and manually link and upload the files to the internet on a dial up connection!)
But we can only plan and Allah’s disposal is the finality.
Life goes on and I came back without any brouhaha and spent another one year being very close to Pete. Even from the time I was abroad, I had written for Suara Keadilan and Pete was the editor – so we continued writing until we parted ways in late 2003.
There were a few times we went on demonstration together – and after one such demo against the war on Iraq in 2003, Pete and I went for a nasi ayam in Ampang. That was the last time we saw each other until another co-incidence brought our path briefly together again in 2007.
In October 2007, arwah Ben insisted that I joined him for a meeting of concerned activists with YTM Tengku Tan Sri Razaleigh at his residence in Ampang, where I met Pete and Kak Marina again. It took him a while to recognise me since I put on a lot of weight (so he claimed!).
I was supposed to have a berbuka puasa with YB Machang and a few others last Wednesday and Pete was actually there, but had to cancel last minute because things in office dragged on. If I had gone, I would have met him before he got arrested.
After I withdrew from official partisan politics, I kept to myself and concentrated on my work and the boys in MCKK. In politics, rumours dominate the day – there was one time I think Pete must have thought that I sold out.
Some of my batchmates, in the early days, asked me why I foolishly did what I did knowing the risk to myself and family. In public, you would passionately explain your ideals and how what you were doing were the most patriotic thing a citizen should have done.
But the truth is always simpler – it’s the friendship and MCKK. I never met Raja Petra in person but decided to help him nevertheless; because he was an MCKK brother in distress. He needed help and on top of that he was actually doing a pretty decent thing – trying to uphold the truth. If I, a fellow MCKK boy did not help him, then what chance would he have. All the years writing many articles and news for Suara Keadilan and Free Anwar Campaign was simply because the editor for both was Raja Petra Kamaruddin – a fellow MCKK in distress.
And the truth is – it was the same motive that had driven me to my political activism circa 1998 – 2003 in the first place – Anwar Ibrahim was a fellow budak koleq, whom I thought had been victimised.
That is how powerful the MCKK bond in my book – I am sure too if one day calamity befalls me, there are others who will put their neck the way many of us had put for other MCKK boys before.
Pete reminds me of Peter Pan and Wendy. Pete never grows up, I always joke that he is trapped in his hippie youth – still thinking about a crusade against everything. It’s always about adventure and excitement to him I guess. If Pete was Peter Pan, many of us were Wendy. We aged faster than him and after a while craved less and less for adventure – so while Pete continued, we withdrew. But like Wendy, we never turned back on the past and never did once we sell out.
I pray that he will be fine (but he’s a tough boy so he will be fine). I tell myself that I will make an effort to see him and buy him a drink and nasi ayam when he comes out eventually.
We should all pray for him too regardless of what we think of his approach [Note 1].
I think you either love Raja Petra or hate him. Some of the comments made at his portal were downright racist, insulting and inciting hatred. I agree that sometimes the comments crossed the line.
But we have enough draconian laws to punish this kind of deeds – most probably under the Sedition Act. Go after the irresponsible people who continue to fan racial and religious hate and make an example of them.