Friday, September 30, 2005

Can you spend the whole day at a shopping complex? I just did...

This is the Part 3 and the final part of my post from the continuation of my travelblog to KL recently. I know its getting boring. So, better keep it short and simple this time.

Day 2
Woke up around 9.30 am, had breakfast served to table but rather disappointing one and then headed to KL Sentral to MidValley. Had the famous JJ asam laksa and rendang ayam nasi lemak(at different times) and also the Turkish herb ice-cream. Literally spent there half a day before proceeding to UPM and then back here again to meet up with some friends again for dinner.

It's better worth it than the RM 5.50 per scoop gelato found here and KLCC.

Met up with a friend in UPM so took the KTM Komuter to Serdang and managed to drop by the Venice of Selangor.

Pretty much the same since I was here more than 2 years ago. They got rid of the ice-skating ring and added more fashion stores for ah-bengs and ah-lians at the topmost floor. The bowling alley remained there.

Toured around UPM to see the changes there (thanks to my friend BH who brought me around and showed me her lab too). Then, went back to MidValley Megamall and waited till 8 pm for dinner with my other friends. Had Yoshinoya's Udon (not the beef rice) and then further went for supper and chat at Steven's Corner OUG. Called it a day after that.

Day 3
Got up again around 10 am this time and even though it has passed the breakfast time, I was still entitled for it. Headed to KL Sentral and took the Putra LRT to Kelana Jaya before taking a feeder bus (which I waited for more than 15 minutes for it to depart) to One Utama. The moment I reached there, I was greeted by Siti Nurhaliza playing some games with participants on stage promoting her CTea.

It is pretty safe for top celebs like her to be on and down the stage like this without surrounded by bodyguards. Bless the safe Malaysia.

Met up with a friend KS at 1 Utama for lunch and then he brought me to the famous Rojak Kader which you can spot it along the way from TTDI? to 1U.

The taste was nothing special compared to Ipoh Greentown's Rojak or Ipoh Padang's Rojak.

He then took me to the Ikano-Ikea-Curve Triangle, in which IMHO, The Curve is full of restaurants, while Ikano and Ikea are furniture centres.

Ikano Power Centre

The Curve


It sounds ridiculuos to walk back from the Triangle area to 1U under the hot sun but it was a not really a big deal to me. Venture around 1U some more before meeting up with another bunch of friends for dinner at Chilis.

Thanks for the treat at Chilis guys!...although somehow get bored by the brouhaha of the Malaysian Idol that night you all were so hyped-about.

Finally, was lucky enough to catch The Myth at the spanking new GSC (thanks EY for getting the tics).
The same old typical Jackie Chan film. Lazy to review this. Read Shaolin Tiger's review here.

Call it a day and spent a night at EY's place, slept for only 3 hours, he took me for a Hainanese coffee and toast breakfast before boarding a bus back to Ipoh.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Malaysia the land of shopping complexes abundance: My KL Travelblog Continued

In my previous post, I have covered Petaling Street and Central Market in my 'Oh-I'm-so-getting-a-backpackers-syndrome' trip to KL. So continuing from after checking in at YMCA, I took a monorail from KL Sentral (not quite aptly names as it was like 2-3km away from the station) to Imbi, where Berjaya Times Square (BTS) was situated.

Not sure whether this 2-coaches Kancil-sized transportation will be bloated up during rush hours. It was pretty normal volume when I boarded it.

I had been to BTS before last year, but it has many changes now with the fully-opened GSC and Borders but still shops were still unoccupied. IMHO, BTS is outrageously and ridiculuously gigantic. It has, what-10 floors or something? The whole thing looks like a hotel from outside and the size of it doesn't attract a huge crowd or did I arrive at an off-peak time at around noon? And the entertainment centre and cinema wasn't actually visible from the normal passage way shoppers would normally walk. IMHO, unadventurous people or shoppers who are too tired to venture further more would miss out those areas located at the back of the complex.

"Welcome to BTS Hotel. May I help you sir/madam? We welcome you to burn bucket loads of calories by venturing every corner of our complex floor by floor on foot. Oh, and do check out our very famous Latuk Loktor Ho's shops at every corner just before you take the escalators.Thank you."

By the time I finished venturing BTS and came out empty-handed, it was raining quite heavily outside. But still I dared the rain to walk to Low Yat Plaza to fulfill my PC and gadgets desire that I have been craving for months. Made the same trip to here last year but this time I bought a Creative Zen 20Gb MP3 player, some blank CDR and DVD-Rs and misc stuff but gave Latuk Loktor Ho's stuff a miss as I'm not a PC/PS game geek.

The PC and gadgets heaven of Malaysia that would put any PC World, Dixons or Currys in shame.

Came out very fulfilling and satisfied, I then proceeded to Sungai Wang but just literally passed by there to snap a picture or two.

Good! The staff of Sungai Wang occupied 1/3 of the total of people spotted in this picture.

Then, proceeded along Bukit Bintang area for a while where a pimp tried to offer me his name card stating his position as a 'health executive.' Yes, subscribing to you-know-what may help you to lose a few pounds but you're drowning yourself in the pool of STD at the same time. Better kau tim yourself lar...

"Sir! Sir! Welcome to the United Nations street in Malaysia. We have wide selection of dolls one...which one do you want har...very convenient you many hotels near here..."

Took the monorail back to YMCA to unload my heavy shopping things and went on the LRT to hear Yasmin Yusuff (pretty sure that's her voice) saying "Station seterusnya: KLCC, Next station: KLCC". Was welcomed by the stall selling gellato or Italian ice-cream which was over ridiculously overpriced RM 5 per scoop.Some familiar shops were there like Marks and Spencer, Topshop/Topman etc. etc. but looking at the price of over RM 100 (which was direct conversion of GBPounds to RM) made me think that it was less stressful buying things in the UK if you just look at the figures and not thinking of the currency exchange all the time. They were having a Givenchy perfume promotion at their main concourse there too.

The promoters outnumbered the actual customers buying their perfumes. The scent wasn't too much to brag about but their freebies were pretty generous. I wished that my fave EDT Chanel Pour Homme Sport was on promotion instead.

Went to Tower Records and discovered they have a tunnel leading to the Aquaria which a blogger somewhere has been posting single snapshots at his/her blog which I couldn't remember. Didn't enter the Aquaria because of the price and it was towards closing time and I would expect it to be the same as Underwater World Langkawi.

Animals should be found in their own natural habitat-not caged or tanked like this to put on show! (Yadda yadda I know how are we going to learn about animals if not from these places and we don't have to brave the wild for that).

Knew that the PC Fair recently was held at the Convention Centre here too. Couldn't imagine how the LRT would by sardine canned and how people could barely move around in here. Went up the stairs towards the Park and snapped this magnificent Petronas Twin Towers illuminating the skies.

Are our petrol prices trying to catch up the height of this Oil Company Twin Towers?

Also, met up with a primary school friend which I have not met for 13 years ago but contacted me through Friendster (they should give me an award for this touching tale. After that, took the LRT back to KL Sentral, ta pau (took-away)Maggi Mee Goreng at a mamak stall nearby YMCA, which they mistakenly gave me Maggi Mee Rebus instead and then called it a day.

Hitting the sack again now and coming up next:
1. Spending virtually the whole day in MidValley Megamall and drastic changes I've discovered in my alma mater UPM.

2. Trip to One Utama and The Ikano Power Centre-Curve-Ikea Triangle the day after.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Oh, No! Not another KL post: Why Lonely Planet (the famous guide book) should employ me...

It has been ages since I've updated my blog. I have been busy travelling and with other things all the while. Plus, blogging is like exercising. If you skip a day of exercise, you will feel lazy to do the following exercises later on. So, to my loyal readers out there who kept checking into my blog daily and to those who randomly came across my blog, here is the update on my blog to suit your reading needs.

As mentioned in my previous post, I will talk about my KL trip through the lenses and in the shoes of a foreign backpacker, without any personal transportation. I travelled down to KL on last Thurs morning and left on Sunday morning (didn't make it to the blogger's meet at Oasis MidValley).Overall, it has been a very fruitful and fulfilling trip as I met up with many of my old mates and had a shopping spree.

Day 1
Took the bus from Ipoh to KL at the Gopeng Silveritage Bus Terminal which was frigging far away from where I stay compared to where it previously was in Medan Kidd. Not sure the exact date when it was shifted there but it was already in a dilapidated condition! Besides the more organised ticket booths, I don't see how much it is different from the previous chaotic condition in Medan Kidd. The whole station is located at underground, with poor lighting and ventilation. It is also difficult to drop off and pick up passengers. OK, it may be unfair to compare this station to other developed countries', but at least a decent waiting area is a must for the comfort of the passengers. Just look at the following picture:

Dilapidated chairs at the poorly lit area of the Gopeng Bus Station.

OK. Enough of the bus station bashing. The bus departed quite on time and I reached Pudu Bus Station after around 3 hours. As usual, passengers have to get down the bus when the buses are queuing at to get into the bus terminal. I then walked away from the busy stretch of buses towards Petaling Street to wonder how the blog-tal got the inspiration for its name. nice to see some 'familiar faces' of the Causasians here ( I have been seeing them all the time-remember?).

There, I was greeted by the friendly faces of Latuk Loktor Ho's recruits asking whether I'm interested in 3 porn films for RM 20. Did I get them? Hmmm... Most of the shops were not open yet as I arrived quite early and the recruits were waiting to set up their stalls. Spent there like 15 minutes, had a bowl of refreshing mata kucing drink before proceeding to the Central Market or Pasar Seni.

The mata kucing stall should consider a plan to spread their wings to the UK and other parts of the world for the benefit of the mankind.

Proceeded to the Central Market as I wished to get my UK colleagues some Malaysian souveniers (not the durian dodol which they spitted out the moment they tasted it the last time!) like some keychains or something. It was pretty much the same 20 years ago the last time I remembered I went there. The portrait painters were still there.

Trip to the Central Market turned out to be fruitless as I came out empty-handed. Not sure how may foreigners know that there is a famous gay club somewhere near here...

To the tone of the Lonely Planet: "From Central Market, cross the street to the Pasar Seni LRT station to proceed to KLCC to see the once World Tallest Towers." I didn't actually go to KLCC but to KL Sentral where I was going to stay in YMCA. Bought a RM 10 fake 'Swatch Watch' which looked pretty real when covered with plastic but not so when removed.

Boarded the Putra LRT from Pasar Seni to KL Sentral before checking into YMCA in Brickfields. Also wondered if I could catch anyone inspired by the 'Racist LRT courtesy campaign' giving away seats for the needy people.

It was pretty cheap for a single room with attached bathroom for RM 70 per night but it was pretty noisy for the room I was staying as it was facing the mamak stall frying Maggi Mee goreng all night long.

Boss! Maggi Mee goreng satu. Hantar ke bilik XXX YMCA boleh?

Gotta hit the sack now and next to come:
1. Shopping spree at the 'PC and gadgets Heaven' Low Yat Plaza, the ridiculuous Berjaya Times Square, and being offered a 'Health Executive' name card by a pimp along Bukit Bintang.

2. Meeting up with an old primary school classmate who I have not met for 13 years and nice pictures of KLCC illuminating the skies of KL.

3. Why a blogger (couldn't remember the name) kept posting pictures of Aquaria KLCC.

4. Day 2: Spending virtually the whole day at MidValley, dicovering the Venice of Selangor (not the Venice of Malaysia anymore as there's already a Venice of Perak near Sitiawan) and visiting my alma mater (UPM) wondering how millions were spent to build a 'Titanic' styled guard house.

5. Day 3: Spending virtually the whole day at the Damansara Utama commercial hub: 1 Utama, Ikea, Ikano Power Centre, The Curve and eating the overrated Rojak Kader and Chilis.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

My flight back home's experience... Part 2

I know this is long overdued already but I'm too busy to update my blog. Sorry for that matter.

Now where were we? Yep...a continuation of my observations the moment I reached the skies of Peninsula Malaysia after more than one year away.

I could only imagine but not truely feel for the people who had suffered the haze not too long ago. It must have been a very frustrating experience then. It is not that I've not experienced the haze back in 1997 before, but the memory was too long ago. But luckily, there was no haze when I arrived but not to say that the air is crystal pure though; remnants of smog were still present as I travel along the highway. (Sorry I did not have any pictures to prove that).

So continuing on topic No.5. How the flight was greeted with our burning fields mega-festival.
The moment the plane was about 10 minutes to land at KLIA, even though I was not sitting by the window pane, from far away, I managed to catch a glimpse of some billowing of smoke coming from some green patches (which was some oil palm plantations). Then, there was not just one patch. There were many others when I had landed and making my trip home along the PLUS highway. Smoke was billowing in the air like nobody's business? Hey...I've just landed in a newly declared developed state! Are they purposely burning the palm oil plantations to show tribal smoke signals or in order to shed its image of an agricultural state? KT better tell me more because I've been missing a lot of your antics in a more than a year.

6. What should we better manage the billions of acres of palm oil plantations along the highway.
Not going to tell the PM how to run his country but just one pure simple observation and interpretation from a layman. Let me put this straight and simple.
Malaysia No.1 palm oil producer in the world.
Palm oil was found almost along the whole stretch of KL-Northern States PLUS highway.
Palm oil leaves are big mess; burning them best solution?
Burning causes haze.
Burning generates heat.
Heat generates energy, hence termed biomass energy.
Palm oil produces fuel.
Fuel price increasing.
No.1 oil palm producer in the world still not using bio-fuel.
Palm oil is rich in Vit E.
Vit E prevents cancer.
1 in 4 Malaysians suffers from cancer.

Sometimes there are things in life which doesn't necessarily postively correlates with each other, just like the above examples :)

I'll be going in a semi-hiatus state from now on and will try to update my blog mainly on the following topics (sorry to disappoint those activists out there), which will discuss about:
1. The space-mission worthy Malaysian gastronomic cuisines that I had tasted throughout my 1-month vacation.

2. Can I make it to around 15 major shopping centres in Klang Valley in just 3 days 2 nights AND by public transportation? (Yes, I will be in KL from Thurs till Sun next week).
Hope that it won't be a spoiler. The time spent on queing up to buy LRT tickets (for different train lines as there's no single ALL ZONE ticket system here) and waiting for the train to arrive (coz it is so unpredicatable when will trains or buses arrive as there are no punctual time-tables followed) will be taxing enough.

p.s. Sorry for the lack of pictures in this post especially the billowing smoke ones but hope to do some investigative photo blogging on topic No. 2 above.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Kisah Seorang Pengeblog Yang Terlampau dan Dilampaui: My flight back home's experience...

Well, as promised in my last post, here are the topics which I will blog about:

1. How I ended up throwing away some nectarines and peaches! WTF!!!
Well, I went to the aiport two hours earlier, the check-in counter queue was long and when I finally reached my turn, the counter clerk asked me to weigh my hand luggage as they have a 'strict 5 kg one-piece of hand luggage per person' policy. But my hand luggage was already 13kg. Btw, I had a bag of fruits in my luggage consisting of blueberries, peaches, nectarines, raspberries and avocados amounting to a total of around 5 Pounds. As a filial son, I wanted my family to taste some 'Western fruits'. But me not willing to take risks and the raspberries are at their peak of menstruations, I gobbled up the whole packet of blueberries and dumped the others into a nearest bin before proceeding to the departure gate. WHAT A WASTE!!!!!! Arghhhh....And you know what? Finally I found of that they don't really have a strict weight restriction at the departure gate scan. WTF!!!

What nice packets of fruits! To be ended up in a ...

..fcuking dustbin! Nope, don't wanna be going around distributing fruits coz they may think I'm a fruit terrorist if not Cinderella's stepmother!

2. Skimpy dressing of MAS stewardess-a truth or a myth?
Not going to say much on this and let you make the judgement based on the following photo. One thing though that on the plane, stewardesses like to put their pens in their..ahem...cleavage. Some horny pervert old man might just pretending to request for a pen and sniff it all the way through.
Was it relevant for MPs to be discussing about this kind of attire at Parliament? You make the judgement yourself.

3. The double-standard treatment of xenophilic MAS stewardess-a truth or a myth?
Well, this time of travel was better than last time where they made remarks like 'Ini mesti Orang Malaysia' and somehow gave a different look on foreigners and locals (Or is it just me? Someone here could defend me?). But one bitchy stewardess was quite rude to me and a foreigner beside me. We were having dinner and the fcuking place was so cramp already so we had to stack our empty trays of food to make space. Then when she came and collect our dirty plates, the fcuking biatch directed us like a nurse ordering us not to stack the fcuking trays in future. She did not attempt to unstack the trays but instead angrily grumbled at me. FCUKING BIACTH!!! Idris Jala need to sack people like you to make profits.

4. Movies I saw on-flight and a brief review of them, especially the no-brainer Potret Mistik.
On flight, we were offered Hostage, Herbie Fully Loaded, Lords of Dogtown, Sisterhood of Travelling Pants and an obscure Pride and Prejudice for English movies and no-brainer Potret Mistik as the single Malay movie. Upon finish watching the film, I was thinking to myself: "I'm so going to blog about Potret Mistik when I reach home and bash as hard as I could."

Not sure when was it shown on the silver screens in Malaysia but it should be quite some time ago. Personally, not really read any comments about the movie but generally the movie sucked BIG TIME!!! (as always Profesor Madya A Razak Mohaideen's and Metrowealth's other films).

According to an internet search the synopsis is as follows:
Potret Mistik mengisahkan sekumpulan mahasiswa di pusat pengajian tinggi, Jeff, Asih, Harry dan Winnie sedang menjalankan tugasan menghasilkan buletin kampus. Masing-masing membuat persiapan untuk menulis mengenai hal yang berlainan.

Jeff yang tertarik dengan kewujudan sebuah banglo ingin menulis mengenai perkara aneh yang berlaku di banglo itu. Misteri bermula apabila Jeff menemui potret berhampiran banglo tersebut.

Sejak itu, dia sering mengalami mimpi aneh. Asih yang membuat artikel berhubung rumah anak yatim pula menemui bukti mengaitkan Jeff dengan banglo tersebut.

Kira-kira 23 tahun lalu, Kartini meminta pelukis, Hayden melukis potretnya untuk dihadiahkan kepada suaminya, Amar yang ke luar negara atas urusan perniagaan.

Sekembalinya Amar, dia mendengar cerita daripada penduduk sekitar bahawa Kartini berlaku curang kerana sering dikunjungi lelaki sewaktu ketiadaannya. Amar marah maka berlakulah peristiwa yang sangat mengerikan. Apakah kaitan Jeff dengan banglo tersebut dan potret siapakah yang ditemuinya di banglo itu?

First of all, Jeff would be very happy to have his name as the main cast and luckily they did not have a website "" set up for that. :P Okay, jokes aside, they movie really sucked big time. As given in the synopsis, Jeff was investigating this house where there were strange things happening in a bungalow. And you know what? The 'strange things' mentioned were not spooky voices, banging doors, misty fogs in the air. IT WAS FCUKING BRIGHT WHITE LIGHTS BLINKING!!! I mean WTF? I thought that all ghosts should be afraid of the light or if not, they like to be in the dark? And then, the 'ghost' also murdered the painter of the portrait IN BROAD DAYLIGHT!!!.

Okay, well, after further watching, I was wrong to make the above assumption. It turned out the 'ghost' was not quite well...a ghost (that's what the selling point of the story was, I guess-to give people suspence?) and it turned out that it was a schizophrenic psychotic freak was a maid to the dead woman in the portrait. She was seen carrying around the corpse around the house, sometimes hugging and kissing it. The corpse turned out to be pretty real but not so scary though, with a decomposing face but surpisingly not smelly, had no maggots around and had a ahem...'bulit' chest. (The woman and hence the corpse was cameoed by Erra Fazira).

The maid turned out to be schizophrenic because her mistress (as in the woman master kind) was murdered by her master who was drunk and was saying 'Kalau minum arak dosa, kau tu zina tak dosa ke?' She somehow turned schizo in just a few seconds the moment the wife was murdered, that she murdered her master in return and turned psycho since. Throughout the movie, she was very protective to her mistress and helped her to seek her lost son, Jeff; so much so that she looked like her MISTRESS!!! I'm not joking here. Not sure about how maids could be so loyal and protective to their masters, but this maid is a mega-hyper-ultra-loyal one, hugging and kissing her all the time, also trying to seek revenge for her! Is was like they were having a...ahem...les affair or something. I KNOW NOW!!! Maybe that could be the reason why the husband murdered her!

And the thing which amazed me was that the movie costs RM 1.5 million and was selected for some film festival or something and won some award? WTF!!! The frigging film was not even aptly named. WHAT WAS SO MYSTICAL ABOUT THE PORTRAIT ANYWAY??? It was only barely shown a few times and Erra Fazira got to be the face of the promotional poster under what grounds? Laying there and play corpse?

The Oscars for the 'Best Horomoerotic (Horror and Homo Erotic) Film' goes to...

I think that's all for today and still to come in my next post:

5. How the flight was greeted with our burning fields mega-festival.

6. What should we better manage the billions of acres of palm oil plantations along the highway.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

I'm back in Malaysia finally...

I'm backkkkkkkkkkkk....yayyy!!!!!!!!!!!! But I'm so frigging knackered and jet-lagged npow to update my blog now but keep your fingers-crossed on the following topics with pictures included in my next posts:
1. How I ended up throwing away some nectarines and peaches! WTF!!!!!!!!
2. Skimpy dressing of MAS stewardess-a truth or a myth?
3. The double-standard treatment of xenophilic MAS stewardess-a truth or a myth?
4. Movies I saw on-flight and a brief review of them, especially the no-brainer Potret Mistik.
5. How the flight was greeted with our burning fields mega-festival.
6. What should we better manage the billions of acres of palm oil plantations along the highway.

And also in memoriam of all those who died due to the Sept 11th incident.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

50 Ideas To Get Rid of Your RM 1 Coins

Hope that it is not too late to come out with this list of ideas as Mycuppa and hinching had suggested some ways earlier.

RM 1 coins to cease circulation and validity on Dec 7th. I guess that's final or maybe not. Remember the 120 km/h speed limit plan? Also the changing of all toll-cards to Touch and Go?

So what are you going to do with them? The best way is to exchange them at banks. But there's still some 'Coinfusions' on this going on, as reported by Jeff Ooi. There's just 3 more months left and if you happen to have bucket loads of RM 1 coins, what are you really going to do with them? Sell them to metal scrap junkyards to smelt them for kereta potong? Seems unfeasible.

Here I have came out with 50 ideas to deal with your bucket loads of the valueless RM 1 coins as of 7th December 2005. Some of the ideas are credited to Mycuppa and hinching. Hope that they do not mind.

In public
1. Buy can drinks from vending machines.
2. Buy RO water from vending machines.
3. Buy snacks from vending machines.
4. Buy condoms (if there's available) from vending machines.
5. Make public phone calls with them.

A series of Malaysian Book of Records.
6. Longest trail of RM 1 coins.
7. Tallest stack of RM 1 coins.
8. Longest hanging mobile of RM 1 coins.
9. Largest Jalur Gemilang made by using coloured RM 1 coins.
10. Largest coin 'kolam' made by RM1 coins.
11. Largest wall area covered with RM 1 coins.
12. Largest pavement area covered with RM 1 coins.
13. Largest collage signboard 'Malaysia Boleh' made from RM 1 coins.
14. Largest chair made from RM 1 coins.
15. Largest table made from RM 1 coins.
16. Largest monument made from RM 1 coins
17. Largest *insert your whatever favourite item here* made from RM 1 coins.

Gardening ideas
18. As a base cover for plant pots.
19. Use them as a garden pavement.
20. Make a Japanese garden using coins instead of white stones.

21. Use them at gaming machines.
22. Donate them to charity boxes.
23. Throw some of them in fountains and make wishes.
24. As a new ammunition for paintballing (so now it is called 'coinballing').
Play tricks.
25. Glue the coin on the floor and hide yourself to check people reactions (credited to mycuppa).
26. Play the magic trick 'There's a coin behind your ear.'
27. Play the trick ‘Guess which cup is the coin hiding under.’

At homes
28. Stick them together as a paper weights.
29. Punch holes in them to make belts.
30. Punch holes in them to make a necklace.
31. Punch holes in them to make earrings.
32. Punch holes and make hanging blinds.
33. As a decoration for your aquarium/fish tank.
34. As ornaments for Christmas tree decorations.
35. As ornaments for CNY tree decorations.
36. As an auspicious feng shuipiece.
37. Use it as sacrification metal for your car battery contact (mycuppa's idea).

In schools
As chemistry projects.
38. Coating coins with copper from copper sulphate metal ion reduction.
39. In acid and alkaline experiments.
40. To test the bleaching property of a chemical.

As art projects
41. A coin hanging mobile.
42. Collage of coins.
43. 'Model city' by stacking them and make buildings, cars, etc.
44. As an instant stamp for ‘stamp and design’ projects.
45. As an outline to draw small circles.
46. As ‘wheels’ for car models.

As business ideas
47. Start a memorablia business by framing them and selling them on e-bay.
48. Use it as throwing objects for fun-fair games.
49. Use them as an object for testing your multi-purpose cleaner products.
50. Use them in 'Guess the number of coins' or 'Guess the weight of the coins' competitions.

"Kalau tak suka boleh blah..." : The Malaysian Brain Drain and 'Good Riddance of Rubbish.'

A British immigration map has just been revealed by BBC, from a study of 2001 census data by the Institute for Public Policy Research of the Sheffield Unversity.

According to the census, more than 1.1 million people moved to Britain in the decade to 2001, which had attributed to the growth of the population in Britain. There was increase of 1.78% increase in 2001 in the number of immigrants in the UK, up from 5.75% in 1991.

What does the statistics have to say about Malaysia then?
Check out the figures below and their links here and here.

Mapping of concentrated areas where Malaysians live in the UK.

Breakdown of the distribution of Malaysians in various UK regions.

The economic status of Malaysians in the UK. Note: Low earners are people earning less than £149.20 a week (half the UK median wage), high earners are people earning more than £750 a week.

"Malaysia itself is ethnically diverse, with ethnic Chinese comprising the second largest group in the country.

It is this group that predominantly makes up the Malaysian-born population in Britain, which explains why the clusters appear in similar places to people born in China or Hong Kong."

Almost 50,000 Malaysians are in the UK now, predominantly Chinese. Is that a good sign or a bad sign? Discuss.

Considering of 'jumping aeroplane'/joining the brain drain and the 'good riddance of rubbish' campaign? Apply for your emigrationat the nearest foreign embassies.

Ronnie Liu's article brouhaha: To debate or not to-make up your mind Umno Youth!

Sept 5th: DAP niat jahat - Pemuda -- Dakwa Tunku Abdul Rahman bukan pejuang sebenar kemerdekaan
Naib Ketua Pemuda UMNO, Khairy Jamaluddin sehubungan itu mencabar Ketua Pembangkang, Lim Kit Siang yang juga bekas Pengerusi DAP membangkitkan perkara itu di Parlimen bagi memperjelaskan kenyataan tersebut adalah pendirian parti, bukannya kenyataan individu.

KJ challenged Kit Siang for a debate in Parliament for that article.

DAP/Ronnie Liu retaliates back by standing by the article and accepted the challenge:
``Saya cabar Khairy berdebat secara terbuka untuk membuktikan bahawa saya menolak Tunku Abdul Rahman sebagai Bapa Kemerdekaan."

Sept 6th: Umno Youth Rejects DAP Call For Open Debate On Merdeka
KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 6 (Bernama) -- Umno Youth Tuesday rejected DAP's call for an open debate to discuss the opposition party's Merdeka article which created a political uproar, describing it as a ploy to seek political mileage.

Boss No.2 said YES. Boss No. 1 said NO. Make up your mind will you?

Spinned article on the front page of mainstream media-Utusan Malaysia, read by the majority race of Malaysia, with over 1,633,000 readers, according to this source.

Orginal article on DAP's website, not explicitly mentioned in the spinned articles. 10,040,000 Malaysian Internet users as of Sept/2004, with a 37.9% penetration. But do you think all of them had visited the website? Its website traffic statistics is unavailable.

Who has gained more political mileage from this brouhaha? You decide yourself.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

"Fuhlamak...orang Kelate masuk TV Omputeh": Malaysia on BBC2's Battle for Islam.

Disclaimer: Pardon my depth of review and my choice of language as I'm not a TV programme reviewer critic. While this blogger has put much effort to try to remember the contents of the programme, however, some of the reportings here may not be accurate as it was based on a vague memory of the programme. Also, sensitive issues like religion are kept at a very low level here. By reading further, you agree that you are not misinterpreting any of the information here and not suing me or putting me in jail for any inaccuracies here. Thank you.

Malaysia was on spotlight again, well, for good reasons now at least since the Proton Savvy bashing on BBC's Top Gear programme. This time, Malaysia, as one of the Muslim countries visited by the presenter, Ziauddin Sardar, was well...portrayed quite well,I guess, by the programme Battle for Islam, a 90-minute documentary on Monday, 5 September, 2005 on BBC Two, 2100 BST. He personally mentioned that Malaysia was the favourite country among the five which he had visited.

According to the website,
Malaysia is a majority Muslim country, though under the constitution the 40% of the population who are non-Muslims have the right to worship as they will.

Malaysia is a traditionally conformist society where political debate is not encouraged. The country has been criticised for continuing to use colonial era security laws which allow for indefinite detention without trial or charge.

Malaysia was ruled for over two decades by the authoritarian but pragmatic Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, under whom Malaysia became the world's most industrialised Muslim country.

Mahathir's successor, Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi, has started to make government more open.

Badawi has also promoted "Islam Hadhari" ("Civilisational Islam"), which stresses the importance of education and science harking back to the great Islamic civilizations of a thousand years ago.

Malaysia is also home to one of the most radical reforming groups in the Muslim world, "Sisters in Islam", who are calling for an end to polygamy and for women to be allowed to become Sharia judges.

I managed to catch the programme and I will be talking about some of the points when Malaysia was focused.

1. The part on Malaysia started when the Merdeka Square and some parts of the Suria KLCC was shown. Surprisingly, the 'second tallest building in the world' was not featured in full-length, with just a window cleaner cleaning part of the window, with an obscure not-quite Malay jingle playing on the background. As our 'abang' was featured earlier, Ziauddin mentioned about the contrast of two close-knit countries; one having tall skyscrapers and one not quite having them. So, are tall skysrapers the main selling point for Malaysia?

2. With tall skyscrapers, the scene changed into drastic contrast where a family in Kelantan was featured. First, they were doing some gotong-royong, which Ziauddin named it as 'collective task'. A few children were seen sweeping some grass and later the family man rode a motorbike and fetched Zia along to his house. The man then showed him around his house and Zia greeted his father too. The man mentioned about sending his kids to madrasahs for Islamic teachings and said about all the religions in the world are the same, preaching for the good, peace and tolerance. He also mentioned about the Islam Hadhari, which he claimed that he was already practising it, but was stressed further by Pak Lah.

3. Pak Lah was also featured where Zia asked his views of what the concept Islam Hadhari was all about. Pak Lah also stressed that he does not want the Muslims to only 'pray day and night to prepare for the akhirat', but also wants them to realise that there is a current real world.

4. Two Anwars were also featured; one was Zainah Anwar, the head of Sisters in Islam NGO and of course the other, Anwar Ibrahim, who was recognised as a 'politician.' Zainah talked about what her NGO was all about and a young girl lawyer of hers was also featured, talking about wearing the hijab and gender equality. I don't quite remembered what Anwar Ibrahim talked about, but as always, he said about 'Something something...that was what I fought for when I was in the government.' Frankly, I have nothing against this guy, but sometimes people just get bored about him harping about his past in the government. We are more interested of what he can offer to bring Malaysia into a better future. JUST leader, Chandra Muzaffar was also featured and voiced his opinions on fundamental Islam in Malaysia.

5. Next, an ex-model was featured, but now all covered with hijab and a black jubah. Guess who? She's Noor Kumalasari! She mentioned about her past where she did lots of modelling job, which includes wearing skimpy bikinis. But since then, she prayed for God to grant her a loving husband to show her 'the true path of life' in Islam. She also voiced her views on women not wearing hijabs.

The Kelantanese family who was featured in the programme. Picture from BBC.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Exclusive in Bolehland!: Keeping rotten apples to save...or to lose more money?

3 similar news:

Exhibit 1: Mayor: A move to save money
LENGGONG: The decision not to suspend an Ipoh City Council landscape director who is facing three corruption charges should be seen as a money-saving exercise, said Datuk Bandar Datuk Hasan Nawawi Abd Rahman.

but then he was later suspended under public pressure.

Exhibit 2:Police shake-up
JOHOR BARU: A large number of senior police officers and personnel, from the anti-vice, gaming and secret society division (D7) in particular, has been transferred or is on the transfer list for reasons ranging from being complacent to suspicions of bribe-taking.

Some have been removed due to sloppy work.

Involving mainly officers stationed in Johor and the Klang Valley, the massive shake-up has been going on for the past few weeks.

The latest developments are the immediate removal of a former state D7 head, a district CID chief, a district D7 chief and two officers-in-charge of police stations.

Apart from these, quite a number of assistant superintendents, chief inspectors and inspectors from D7 units across the country has been moved to other duties within the state or transferred to “cold storage” positions in the Federal Reserve Unit or General Operations Force.

Exhibit 3: Isa still carrying out his duties
PUTRAJAYA: Federal Territories Minister Tan Sri Mohamed Isa Abdul Samad still performs his duties at the ministry despite being suspended from Umno last June.

The Umno vice-president was suspended by the party’s disciplinary board on June 27 for involvement in money politics during last year’s party election.

Federal Territories Ministry secretary-general Datuk Dr Zulkarnain Awang said Mohamed Isa’s suspension from Umno did not affect the ministry because Isa continues to chair meetings and sign documents.

“The minister still performs his duties and it is business as usual at the ministry. The suspension does not affect development projects which have been planned.

Whether you want to label it 'money politics', 'still under investigation' and 'innocent until proven guilty', their credibility were at stake already. Take one very simple and high-profile case. During the trial of MJ, would you still want to send your children to his Neverland? But now since he is innocent, would you still want to do that? Don't get me wrong here. I love MJ's songs. Were talking about the message here, not the medium.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

"I'll be back..."

No, that is not a tagline from Terminator. Normally I don't talk about my personal life here (as if I have any), but just to let my blog readers out there that I'll be back on the 10th September. Not sure whether there's any bloggers gathering going on during the period while I'm back but just drop a message in the shoutout box if there's any. Cheers.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Science Update: "Oi...perangai macam monyet!" We are like chimpanzees after all, sort of.

I guess most of us know that we share 98% of our DNA with the chimpanzees, making them the CLOSEST (not closet as before) relative to us. Today, 1st of September, is considered a historic day in bioscience as the chimpanzee's genome (the whole genetic blueprint of the chimpanzee)was published in the latest edition of Nature, a reputable scientific journal.

According to its special focus website,

What makes us human? We share more than 98% of our DNA and almost all of our genes with our closest living relative, the chimpanzee. Comparing the genetic code of humans and chimps will allow the study of not only our similarities, but also the minute differences that set us apart.

Providing a resource for more than just genomics, Nature presents a special web focus to commemorate the genome of Pan troglodytes. Alongside the first unequivocal fossil evidence of the genus Pan, leading researchers have kindly supplied Nature with previously-unseen film of experiments and observations of chimps in the wild and from world-renowned sanctuaries. Selected films relate to papers published in the chimp genome special issue. Enjoy FREE ACCESS to an incredible gallery of chimpanzee behaviour courtesy of Nature and the people behind the science.
For news, interactive graphics, features, a roll call of famous chimps and more, see's chimp genome special

Image copyrighted to Nature Publishing Group

Some of the interesing facts picked up from the interactive graphic activity.

Are chimpanzee more promiscuous than human? (Benglish: Eh, itu beruk monyet macam manusia punya suka kongket lebih dari kita kah?)
Chimpanzees are far more promiscuous that humans, a fact demonstrated by the impressive size of their testes. Relative to body size, a male chimpanzee's testes are ten times larger than a man's, with a prolific sperm-production capacity to match. And they need it - female chimpanzees don't stand by their man; they have multiple partners, which means that male chimpanzees need to produce as much sperm as possible to give themselves the best chance of fathering offspring during the ensuing 'sperm war'. And female chimpanzees, besides maximizing their chances of reproducing with a genetically superior male, also benefit from the confusion over paternity - a male is less likely to kill a young chimp if there's a chance he fathered it.

Can chimps learn and think? (Benglish: Eh...jangan pikiak macam beruk, perangai macam beruk!)
Humans are the undisputed world champions of brain power, but how far behind are chimps? Studies of both captive and wild chimps have shown that they can pick up both maths and language.

A captive chimp called Ai managed to learn the numbers one to nine, and could arrange a selection of three single-figure numbers in order - as long as they weren't too close together in value. Even in the wild, numbers play a simple role in chimp behaviour. A chimpanzee will usually only attack a solitary male from another group if accompanied by two accomplices or more. And a male chimp's response to rival calls will vary depending on the size of the group he is travelling in.

Chimpanzees have also shown great facility for language. Some can understand and follow verbal instructions such as "Take the keys and put them in the refrigerator", whereas others have mastered an impressive vocabulary using sign language.

Make an effort to click on the links for more pictures and videos. Most of the contents are free. It is definitely a good read indeed.

So we are not so different from an animal after all. That explains why some us still wields a weapon in a general assembly publicly.

Don't talk about Darwinism and religion to me here. I only believe in genes. So, there is not quite an ultimate race in this world (which includes Malaysia) after all.

My last quote:

"It's not the genes which make us different. It's the expression of them which makes some of us more corrupt, more greedy, more discriminatory, and more racist."