Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2009 is Over (Thank You)

"Run straight for your dream," Dorks Never Say Die by Pee Wee Gaskins.

Goodbye 2009~

And so, 2009 is coming to a close. And this is the time most of us would sit back and reminisce about the year that has been. It's also the time of year that people would set their aims and goals for improving themselves in the year ahead. Being the "easily influenced" type, I don't want to miss out on the fun either, and this post will be an ode to 2009. A lame one, but an ode, nonetheless.

2009 was for me a good year (but then again, any year spent healthy would be a good year, no?)

It was the last year I have spent as a teen (unofficially) and my 2nd and 3rd semesters of my foundation course. I will be entering 2010 (Kedah Maju?) aged 20 (adult?) and in my degree years.

First and foremost, I would like to thank God, but then again, I thank Him every chance that I get. Alhamdulillah.

Next, I would like to thank my family for always being there for me, providing, caring, loving. This also includes cousins, uncles and aunts. It wouldn't be half, heck, even a quarter as good if even one of them weren't there. So thank you.

I would also like to thank my Cohort mates for helping me out in the turbulent 2nd semester. A special thanks would be given to the Cohort 2 guys (all 8 of 'em), all them TESL 2 kids (for making FREP what it is now) and generally to anyone else that helped a lot. I would like to drop a few names here, if you don't mind. Thank you to Hystrix (for being the best assistant and friend a guy could ask for), Azie (for being a tremendous help and for always keeping me grounded), Bagan (for being a great older brother), Aini Thoyba (you don't know how much your words mean to me), Nurul (for giving me something to smile about), Lan (for reminding me time and again that I'm not the perfect human being), and all the lecturers that have helped us tirelessly to get this far.

A special thanks to Miss Letch (my tutor and boss), Madam Rovena (for making ES my favourite subject), Miss Choong Ching Ching (for caring a lot), Madam Salmah (for making SS fun and being one of my favourite lecturers, even though you're no longer one), Madam Nurulnadia (for making me realize I was weak and want to improve) Miss Malar (even though you don't teach me, you taught me a lot), Madam Mariah (for inviting me to realize that I love acting, and for the books that you've lent), Mr Ganesan (for being a cool lecturer) and any other lecturer that might have slipped my mind. Thank you and thank you again for everything.

Next on the list are my Alor Star friends. All them boys from Delude, Akmal Chom (whom I got to see only once this year), Collegian friends, rugby friends and all. I hope not to lose touch with all'a'yall, and with the existence of a little thing called Facebook, it'll be hard to. Thanks fer ev'rythang y'all.

Wow, it turned out to be just a really big thank you list, huh? I wonder how my thank you list would look like if I won an Oscar (as if).

'Till next year,


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

SAHOCA vs AS Blues (Dec 09)

"There was never the top, so why (are you) looking up?" Sunny Cloudy by Delude.

Top left, guy in yellow smiling like a retard.

So last Sunday, there was a friendly rugby match between Alor Star's traditional rival teams SAHOCA (Sultan Abdul Hamid Old Collegians Association) and Alor Star Blues. I naturally play for SAHOCA.

The game ended with SAHOCA (predictably) winning 27-0. Not the biggest of scores, but we had very little to choose from. If you count the number of jerseys in the picture above, there would only be 19 players. That means only 4 would be on the bench. And with fitness levels nearing zero, 4 is not enough for normal games. Good thing the Blues were less equipped in the talent department, even though the bench could have formed another team.

The game reminded me of how I loved playing rugby, and it made me realize that that wasn't just it. I loved playing rugby with Collegians. I've been playing rugby with other teams before this, namely the Penang Blues and the Kedah team, but none of them can compare to playing with good old Collegians.

And the game also reminded me of what I didn't like about rugby. Some players (none of them from the SAHOCA team) play dirty. They punch, kick, pinch, squeeze where it's inappropriate, and verbally abuse. That's the dirty side of rugby and brings disgrace to the good game of rugby. These guys are (to me) not fit to play rugby because they aren't cool enough, or in other words, professional enough to carry themselves in a game of rugby.

When they're on the winning side, they (figuratively) spit in the faces of their opposition, unnecessarily rubbing salt into their wounds, dragging the loser's faces in the mud and laugh at them. When they're on the losing end, however, they come up with excuses, pointing fingers, try their hardest to injure their opponents in hopes that it would bring a small joy in their little hearts to have been able to break a bone or scar a face. These players are bad winners and bad losers. They don't even deserve to be called rugby players, in my humble opinion.

If that's how they handle themselves in something as trivial as rugby, imagine how they carry themselves in actual life. Because, like rugby, life hits you hard, and you're going to lose some battles, and not everyone plays fair. How are you going to handle yourself when you find yourself in a pickle? Like my father/coach says, how you handle yourself in life is often determined by how you handle yourself in a game of rugby.

Rugby is a good sport for good sports. It's a barbaric game played by gentlemen. Or at least it's supposed to be.


Thursday, December 24, 2009

Mid-morning Ramblings

"The age of man is over," Kings and Queens by 30 Seconds To Mars.

You know what? I'm turning 20 next year.

Yeah, I know what you're thinking. "A post at 3am and that's all you have to say?"

Okay, so maybe you weren't thinking that, but I am (about turning 20).

When I turn 20, (oh God, I can't believe it) I'll be closer to adulthood than pubescence.

And I'm scared out of my mind.

But reading a post by a fellow TESLian (a senior at that, who has recently turned 20) got me thinking.

She said " I'm 20! No more in my teen years! But it's okay, I've lived those years well."

The contentment that she felt with her life so far was enough to bring a silent "wow" out of me.

And it made me ask myself, "Did I live my teen years well?"

Well, now that I've thought about it, yes. Very well in fact. I've travelled, studied, gained friends, learned to play the guitar, played rugby, made mistakes, apologized, prayed, laughed and cried.

I bled, broke an arm and my head (not figuratively), made jokes, fell silent, wondered, felt depressed and jubilated.

I loved, I lost, I longed, I walked, I talked, I sang, I cowered, I hated, I fought, I forgave and I forgot.

No, this is not a list of verbs in simple past tense. This is my life (or was).

And I lived my teen years well.



Monday, December 7, 2009

Depression Potion (Tag From Neynie)

"16 just held such better days," Adam's Song by Blink 182.

So I got tagged by Neynie from Neynie's Labyrinth. Might as well.

So, what would I do if I felt sad or depressed over something?

Here are some things that I would or would not do. You try guessing for yourself. *Cheeky laugh*

Neynie: Ske ati jer dier ubah aku nyer tag.. (What? He changed/modified my tag to make it better??)

1. Beat somebody up. Bad.

Where's your umbrella now, biatch!?

Not even the princess of R&B would be safe from me when I get really depressed. So whoever sees me not in a good mood should shut up and drive the hell out of my way before I send you in for physical rehab. You don't wanna see how this good boy turns bad, so put out an SOS, ya dig?

2. Weep helplessly.


When I *sob* can't take it anymore, *sob* I just need to let out a good cry, let the pain and misery flow out of my eyes like clear, liquid needles out of my system. Of course, I'm a dude and it's just not right seeing a dude crying in public, so I'll escape to the nearest powdering room to weep my little heart out.

3. Play Rock Riot! on Facebook.

The Guitar Hero of Facebook!

When I'm feeling down in the dumps, there's nothing like a good game of "Rock Riot" to sooth the soul and turn all that sappy sadness into testosterone filled madness of jamming on your numerals on your keyboard and gain sweet satisfaction from getting five-stars and 300-combo while earning your badges and accessorizing your rocker with a much needed afro and Converse. If only I had the real Guitar Hero.. *sigh*

4.Be on my own.

Seclusion potion.

When the world gets me down, I simply run away. Yup, being alone can work wonders on myself. It gives me a chance to contemplate things, argue stuff out with myself, sing, praise the Creator's majestic creations, remind myself of how fortunate I really am to be living, breathing, given a chance to better my chances in the afterlife and ultimately seek happiness. We sometimes need to listen to ourselves, because most of the time, we make sense.

5. Read the al-Qur'an.

One on one with the number One.

When my world doesn't seem to shine like it used to, I can always count on the words of God to sooth me. They're the ultimate words and in those words your soul feels glee and you repent from your sadness, knowing that life shouldn't be lived with a frown. You find calmness and security from the Holy Book, reminded that everything happens for a reason, and everything will work out for the better, InsyaAllah.

Anyone up for this one?


Saturday, December 5, 2009

Cartoon Tag From Najwaa

"It's hard to say that I'd rather stay awake when I'm asleep," Fireflies by Owl City.

So this is a tag by a friend of mine, Najwaa. It's a simple enough tag. Just list down 5 of your favourite TV programmes/shows that you were obsessed with during your childhood. Easy.

I was a cartoon addict back then, and I recall a time when I woke up late one weekend and upon realizing that I had missed the show (Pokemon, I think) I cried. I was 8 years old at the time.

So here are my 5:

1. Pokemon

Gotta catch 'em all!

Pokemon Blue: highly addictive!

I can hear the theme song playing in my head already. When it came to Pokemon (Season 1), you name it, I knew it. Everything there was to know about those cute little vermin, I knew. I was a walking, talking, breathing PokeDex. I played the game until my eyes got sore while listening to Britney Spear's "I'm Not A Girl, Not Yet A Woman" on Winamp. I had the Pokemon sticker book (but then again, everyone did at the time) and was well on my way to finishing it until a teacher confiscated it from me, us, everyone. I always fantasized that there would be a Pidgey or a Ratatta hiding in any long grass I passed through. I purchased the Pokemon merchandise, and even those trading cards and was the understudy of Akmal, the owner of several decks (I only had one). More affluent friends bought those assemble-it-yourself Pokemon models and played with them in class as I enviously watched on. Then, a piece of paper saying horrible things about Pokemon saying horrible things stopped my interest in them.

2. Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers

Go go Power Rangers!

Just in case you forget their names.

Remember Alpha 5? "Aiyaiyai!!"

I was in love with these guys ever since I could speak. I don't know what my first words were, but if you told me they were "Go! Go! Power Rangers!" I would believe you. I loved the fact that they were the best of friends, fighting evil together while still managing to have great fun together. Plus, they got those cool morphin' belt buckles which were to die for. The way they made punching bags out of the monsters that Rita sent down to defeat them, and after almost being beaten, she throws down her staff from her lair on the moon to unleash a crevice full of smoke to supply her monster with even more power and grow ten-fold. The Rangers don't mind as they call up their Zord pals and combine to become Megazord and eventually beat the monster. My personal favourite is the green ranger, Tommy. He has that long hair which was so cool back in the '90s and he's got that neat dagger that also acts as a flute to call up his Zord. Memories.

3. Digimon

Taichi and the rest of the gang.

They digivolve!

I memorized the whole intro (Japanese version). I knew the names of all the 1st wave of Digimons. I watched all the episodes of Season 1. I even have a few Digimon VCDs, some in Malay, some in sucky English spoken by Malaysians, and I think just one or two actual American English VCDs. I envied all my friends that had Digivices and brought them to school. They were super-expensive back then, so I was just a spectator to their battles. I was also given a Digivice by someone (I can't remember) to tab it (the art of getting your digimon to digivolve without actually training it). Then that friend got a newer Digivice and gave the Digivice that I was tabbing to me for FREE! I loved that little thing as if it were my own brother and tried hard to take care of it, even though at that time, the trend was deteriorating. I had the sticker book until (again) a teacher confiscated it. But after numerous seasons of Digimon, I have now lost interest in the all-new Digimons. The simplicity of it is gone.

4. Barney

BJ, Barney and Baby Bop.

Come on in and join the fun!

Barney is a dinosour from our imagination. And I loved him! I have an overload of video tapes (yeah, it was THAT long ago) in the store-room showing just how much I loved him and he loved me, and that we're a happy family. I learned a LOT from him and the gang. Songs, games, manners, everything you want a five-year-old to learn, I learned it from him. My English would not be where it is today if it not for the oversized purple t-rex. Seriously. He would take the kids in the class and give them a whole adventure using only their own imagination, sing songs, give lessons. And don't forget, he can be your friend too, if you just make-believe him!

I'll just leave it at 4, 'coz I can't think of anything right now.

I leave you with the opening theme song of Barney & friends.


Friday, December 4, 2009

Rugby Refs and Football Refs

"Earth turns slowly," Fireflies by Owl City.

Referees. Love 'em or hate 'em, they're there to do their jobs, which is to keep a match between two sides fair. But I'm not going to touch on their jobs here. I'm going to write about the differences between the treatment of the refs in two sports, which are football (or soccer) and rugby.

A barbaric sport played by gentlemen. And it's true. The refs get treated very well. Rarely does a rugby player get in an argument with the referee, even if the referee is downright wrong in a decision. Even if one does try to argue, he admits defeat quite easily. The referee has very good control of the game and the players, and puts his foot down without as much as a groan from the players. If the referee needs to say something, he calls the captain as well as a wrong-doer for a little chat and that's the end of it. If the referee produces a card, the guilty player will turn on his heels and go to the sin bin without saying a word, most of the time.


Those above pictures happen almost every time the ref blows his whistle. Every decision is argued. If he was the fouler, he'll scream "Ref! The wanker obviously dived!". If it's the foulee, he'll say "You're not going to give a card for that??" after rolling on the ground feigning pain in the leg or head area. A red card will be greeted with at least 9 players from the carded person's team arguing all at once that it's a bit "harsh". The carded person will stay on the pitch, pleading his case for ten more minutes before reluctantly heading off the to the showers.

Seriously, I don't like that part of football. In 90 minutes, 15 minutes are set aside for faking injuries and arguments with the ref, and that's just the average professional game.

Any comments?


Thursday, December 3, 2009

Dance Revolution

"If you never try, you'll never know," Fix You by Coldplay.

Git up up on da dance flo'!

It might surprise a few out there that I dance. No big shows or anything, just a performance or two here and there. I don't consider myself a dancing prodigy of any sort, mind you. But I do enjoy dancing. Expressing yourself through movement shouldn't be a no-no, in my opinion anyway.

When I hear some good music, it just makes me want to move, and that movement, that spontaneous sequence of flailing the arms, or tapping of the legs, or bobbing of the head, or shaking of the hips is what you call dancing. It might not be very sightly, but it's bodily expression nonetheless.

When I hear a good, upbeat tune, it just makes me want to stand up and move. If it's a hardcore breakdown, then headbanging is what comes naturally. But not being able to dance makes you shy to do it, on your own and even more in public.

And, as sad as it sounds, I don't think I can dance all that nicely. Sure, I can wave my arms around like a madman with a bee in his dress, but I crave for a more refined kind of dancing, you know, the kind that you see in "Step Up" movies or in video clips.

Ain't dat kool?

Realizing my limited know-how of the dancing world, I searched a few videos that I thought could help me out and get a few moves under my belt. One dance I'm working on right now is this:

It's a dance bit by a Japanese band called L'Arc En Ciel. It's the only dance they have ever done (I think), because they don't have a lot of upbeat songs. Plus, they aren't really J-pop.

Another dance crew I like the look of is the Jabbawockeez. Here's my favourite from them,

Other dances would have to wait, because even though these aren't any longer than a minute long, they're tough for noobs like me.

If you guys have any other dances that you feel look cool and danceable (no flips or headspins quite yet!), don't be shy to suggest them in my comment box okay?