Tuesday, December 29, 2009

On the 4th day of Xmas

So now you can vote for me:

http://www.patchtogether.com/designs/designs/view/id/2600

Days like these are pretty amazing. Some people go club hopping, some go pub crawling but I love going friends a-calling. From office to home to a rendezvous. And now I'm off to the see the wizard ... the wonderful wizard of...

Monday, December 28, 2009

'twas the 3rd day of Xmas

Turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, brown sauce, some spicy chicken, roast lamb, kunyit rice, boiled vege, friend vege, potatoes, cheese cake, jelly cake, kueh kueh, fruits, barley drink, soft drinks and a partridge on a pear tree. And I still haven't enough sleep and I am fed to the eyeballs.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

'twas the Night after Xmas

...and there was company after company of families and friends and then an array of wines, liquor and satay, lamb, desserts, turkey and some serious and bizarre conversations. And I haven't enough sleep.

'twas the Night before Xmas

...and we had fried tofu balls, salad, spaghetti, roast chicken with potatoes, fried tempei, baked capsicum, home made tiramisu, vanilla and peach ice cream with St. Dalfour's blackberry jam, chocolate cake, salsa and wonderful company. And I haven't enough sleep.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Banking on Banksy

Talk about coincidences. What are the odds that someone told me about Banksy last night and this morning I find a link to his work by chance on a friend's Facebook?

Banksy, if you don't already know, is a British graffiti artist. And he is a semi-anonymous artist whose identity is not publicized but may be known by some. So who is he? An anti hero? An anti social vandal? A mystery?

His works are tongue-in-cheek, anarchistic, politically cheeky, anti government and thought provoking graffiti, stencils, paintings and sculptures are not to be taken lightly. Looking at his great masterpieces you will know that he has more to say than just being labeled as a socially irresponsible vandal. Here are some of his works but they are only a smidgen of what more you can get from this elusive artist.



 

http://www.banksy.co.uk
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banksy




'Twas a Night of Delusions





I love going for Malaysian plays because so far there is always some form of unexpected surprise. From the gopher holes of Cuckoo Birds to the representational boxes used in Wayang Fajar and now this, a series of plays that take us from one room to the next.

I had no idea what Delusions: The Year in a Word was all about but I knew I just had to watch it since so many known talents are involved.

It started with a play without words of the lives of two ordinary people going through the motions of the ups and downs of an everyday existence with humor and wit. Next, we were ushered into the adjacent room  to experience the sights and sounds of a video performance and I somehow picked up on the nostalgia and wistfulness when the audio and visual baptized us. Following that were two healthy looking guys working out a routine, which made me breathless just watching them, while a political speech was played in the background. And then there is the leg of an ant has been wounded in the bottom of a well drama where the actors sit among the audience reiterating 'I dreamed of a cow last night', reminding of Rent the movie. If you think it can't go anymore bizarre than this we again adjourn to a room where face masks were distributed. Two actors and a pile of sand came into contact and the most magnificent visual effect I have ever seen emerged from the particles that were thrashed in a beam of light. Finally, a couple of clowns entertained us with their buffoonery and ingenuity of what clowns usually do. And to close an evening of outre events we were each given a card with instructions to mimic Teoh Beng Hock's death position, for those who chose to, on the ground to pay our respect for him in a silent candle light moment.

What a fantastic way to end the year for the arts. It takes so much of coordination to get the entire show running without hitches and it was definitely one event that could have had more audience to be a part of this creative delusion.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

The End of Human Kind as we know it

I am currently writing a script on human trafficking and I can't believe what I find on the internet. This is the most lucrative and fastest growing criminal industry in the world. Sometimes I wonder how is it possible for a human being to treat another like an animal.

How can anyone have sex with a person who is forced into prostitution? How can anyone buy a person to be his slave? How can anyone purchase a stolen baby and raise it as his own? Where is the heart in all this? Do these people have no heart? No conscience?

Due to the illegal nature of trafficking and differences in methodology, the exact extent is unknown. According to United States State Department data, an "estimated 600,000 to 820,000 men, women, and children [are] trafficked across international borders each year, approximately 70 percent are women and girls and up to 50 percent are minors. The data also illustrates that the majority of transnational victims are trafficked into commercial sexual exploitation.
(Extract from wikipedia)


At times I feel like there's hope for the homo sapiens, at times I think not. And we have the cheek to complain about the tasteless food we eat, bitching at offices for better standing among colleagues, warring with one another for more and being uncompassionate to the smallest of things that actually mean a lot.

How can we survive our own horror of being human? What sick bastards can go on doing this? And the government? They're more concern about banning books and punishing people who are happy with their lives. If 2012 doesn't bring the end, something else definitely will!


http://www.humantrafficking.org/countries/malaysia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_trafficking

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Phobia for the People

I've met people who leave me phobias,
people whom I have no wish or desire to see again.
The thought of them frightens me
when I recall their presence that feels like pain.

Some people I'd just love to embrace
and hold a smile as long as I can give.
Some people are wonderful beyond grace
who makes this world such a wondrous place to live.

I've always believed in the benefits of the doubt
but it doesn't always turn out that way.
I'd love to be naive and innocent as a cloud
but some people prefer the bitch and the fray.

I like to think that there is always a chance
for people to wake up from their delusions.
But some people remain in an antipathic trance
and sanctify it to be their religion.

How can I not be afraid of these people
when all I feel is their corrosive energy?
How can I not stay away from their drivels
when anger, dissatisfaction and fear are all I see?

Monday, December 14, 2009

I'm losing my mind



Raymond told me my Monsters, Beasts & Creatures chapbook reminds him of Luigi Serafini's Codex Seraphinianus. I didn't know who that guy was or what the book was all about so I went on a witch hunt and found many sites about it that devoured most of my morning.

And as one thing leads to another I found it to be more and more mind boggling and intriguing. This is the kind of book you either skim through and utter 'bah humbug!' or be amazed by it like I am right now. I didn't want to stop for breakfast or lunch for that matter but decided to stuff myself with a piece of bread while I studied the related links to this amazing looking book.

I can't help but feel that Serafini must have had a vision or insight to produce this strange looking book. It couldn't have been a random work of art for art's sake. Being the day dreamer and occasional spaced out animal that I am maybe I am reading a little to much into this. I wish Serafini would say something about it but he remains quiet until now.

My head is about to crack open and my brains ooze out but I am still trying to stay at my laptop to find out about the Voynich manuscript, Codex Mendoza, Borges’s “Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius and everything else that seem to have some connections with it.

If you are not ready to walk into the realm of madness don't even look at this book or you'll never know what sanity is ever again.

Embargo



I am totally totaled from the weekend. I didn't realize 2 days of art bazaar could take so much from me. Maybe it's because I was also rushing to get the chapbooks out? Or could it be that I just completed more than a week's long preparation for the Sentuh project?

Anyway the most fun part of the event was meeting some of my erstwhile students and a few new friends. But now I can hardly keep my eyes open and I miss my bed ... mattress. Oh! the joy of lying down and losing myself to slumber.



I also had the opportunity to watch Wayang Fajar which is bizarre, hilarious and visually impressive. I just loved what they did to the boxes, looking like an art installation, functions as the screen and also manipulated to express emotions and anthropomorphized. But most of all Zedeck stole the show with his Betty Crocker or Martha Stewart persona which brought the house down ... to the ground.


The other play by Fallen Leaves was just as remarkable with the issues of Three little words: Sex, Drugs & Violence. My best part was when Azahar read his very short and witty poem with such gusto and humor. These amateur actors are brilliant although they have no theater background.

I guess this is more the Art 4 Grabs for me than to watch the booth and wait for potential purchasers although I am grateful that they did.


And not forgetting the heroes.

Tonight I shall sleep well, knowing that I have done something I have always wanted to do. And the weekend has been really a lesson of life in so many ways. *Yawnnn* Good night world, goodnight to all who are compassionate, considerate and responsible.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Quote of the day

Always find a way.

How Can I Tell You?

How can I tell the man
that he's children are not happy
with the situation at home?
How can I tell him
everything is falling apart
when all he can see is the facade he propped up?
How can I tell the woman
what she is doing to her son
will bring years of agony and despair?
How can I tell her
when all she wants to see
is the immaculate side of the son?
How can I tell this man
who spoils his son unconditionally with guilt,
and that he is doing more harm than good?
But he defends himself with the common axiom,
'you don't understand'.
How can I tell someone
who regard me as a friend
that I don't reciprocate the feelings?
Not because he doesn't
measure up to the guidelines I imposed
but because his pessimism brings me down?
How can I tel a friend
whose laughter is as empty
as the attention she is drawing?
Howw can I tell her
to seek the naked truth
instead of wearing the masks of deceit?
How can I tell anyone anything
when no one wants to listen?
Who am I to tell them what I see
when I could be implicated
for being discriminatory and judgmental?
But if I don't say a word
would I be cynical and irresponsible?
How can I tell you
you don't have to prove yourself
to anyone or yourself?
How can I tell you
you don't have to get defensive
and layout all the excuses of the world?
How can I tell you
to just let go and just be?
How can I tell you
what need not be explained?
How can I tell you
when you can't tell yourself?

Friday, December 11, 2009

This Weekend! Grabbing them arts!


 
 
 

My first 4 chapbooks for the first time for Art 4 Grabs this weekend at the Annexe

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Angels in America at the Annexe



We did a marathon, yes the whole 6 hours, of Angels in America at the Annexe to wrap up this year's Queer as Film Sundays. This is the first time I am watching it after hearing tons of recommendations, praises and conversation pieces. The hours passed faster than I expected but the series didn't grab me the way I thought it would. Or at least the way I've heard so much hype about. When I checked the awards that it won and responses in IMDB I'm wondering if I missed something here. Something so vital that made this TV series a hit and that is liked by everyone who spoke about it.

It's a good series of course but I felt there were other adapted plays that were much better than AIA. The outlandishness remind me of Twin Peaks and the multiple-role characters remind me of Peter Sellers, Whoopi Goldberg and even Jo Kukathas.

Here are some of the adapted plays that I have enjoyed tremendously over the years:

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof 1958 (Tennessee Williams)
Deathtrap 1982 (Ira Levin)
Nell 1994 (Mark Handley)
The Crucible 1996 (Arthur Miller)
Rent 2005 (Jonathan Larson)
Bug 2006 (Tracy Letts)

Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Touch Project



What an experience it had been for the past 9 days of meetings, brainstorming, rehearsals, paintings and late nights at the mamaks that finally lead to Frinjan yesterday. A mixed bag of nuts we came from all over the places with theater background, artistic and designing scene, regular 9 to 5 Joe or Jane and even with some political affiliations.

Beginning with a 2 day sexuality and sexual rights workshop we meld into ideas for a one person performance on several issues related to the 16 days of activism against gender violence supported by JAG (Joint Action Group) and at the same time worked out the art installation. For such a short period of time what we achieved is remarkable and still beyond my expectation.

I've recently known Malaysians who defy logic to complete shooting a TV movie in 10 days, who can write scripts within a week and now this. Brilliant doesn't even cut it right. We assembled at 5 Arts Center for the first time and then continued with Strawberry Fields Cafe for brainstorming, SS2 coffee shop and the mamak for fellowship.

I still remember how the word 'sentuh' came about, which means touch, and also a combination of 2 words 'sexualiti dan tubuh' that means sexuality and body. The performances were 'Saya seorang wanita (I am a girl), Perempuan harus berambut panjang (Girls should have long hair), Saya bangga sebagai seorang wanita (I love being a woman), Space, Box, Tomboy, Invasion of Privacy and peephole.

Thanks for the memories Koon, Shieko, Fairuz, Ayam, Masturah, Sherilyn, Haslina, Paik Yin, Siti and Kevin (and everybody else). Another something for my autobiography.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Limerance? WTF

I just found out I suffered from Limerance when I was younger after all these years. This definition says it all.
Limerence refers to an involuntary cognitive and emotional state of intense romantic desire for another person.
Dorothy Tennov, Psychologist
It's a near obsession form of romantic love which is a kind of unrealistic expectation, like an infatuation, without the knowledge of the admired person. Thank god I'm out of it. This intensity can lasts for months or years and cause an emotional breakdown and probably even drastic measures of unrequited love. You can actually build a big picture of yourself and the person involved in a future that doesn't exist and live through it as though it's real.

Sounds very much like Fatal Attraction doesn't it?

My Heart

My heart is a funny being,
she doesn't tell me what she's up to and what she does.
She'll love anyone without my consent,
and she'll do what pleases her.
She'll make me cry when she is moved
by a book, a movie, or a situation.
And then cackle like a hysterical banshee
when she loses her grip of everything.
She reads people like a dictionary,
and whispers to me her definition.
I'll tell her it's none of her business
but you think she'll listen to reason?
My heart is not a lonely hunter,
she lives life on the edge.
She flirts around as though
she's play acting on a stage.
She knows no bounds and barriers
she's wild as the windy gale.
She's full of life's desires
to take on every fairy tale.
My heart is a woman of passion
she is warm and soft and full of love.
But my mind can curb her enthusiasm
for he is the only one who knows.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Raw

My recent synchronicity is with the word Raw. I saw some artwork which prompted me to have my own exhibition (next year I hope) with this theme the way I like art to be. And then a friend of mine said casually she likes art which is raw and original. Today I got an email to one of those subscribed newsletter that is asking for submission for a Raw themed contribution to be published online. Now, how bizarre is that?

Monday, November 30, 2009

Tag

What is your tagline in life?

I will go where I am most needed.

I will go to a place where I can find myself.

I will go where I can be alone.

I will go where the wind takes me.

I will go where it can make me rich.

I will go where my full potential can be explored.

I don't want to go anywhere.

You can be assured that whatever you choose will become your reality.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Girl who will Scream into her Future

Being me is being wickedly imaginative all the time. I hear this little girl across my apartment who screams every day. You can hear that she's not exactly crying but she screams for the sake of attention and it drives her family up the walls. I think they don't know what she wants. And by the sound of their voices I can surmise that they are trying to distract her with something else or coax her into forgetting what she was screaming about.

This goes on every day without fail. While one side of me wants to kick her ass till kingdom come another part of me is wondering if this is some kind of foreshadowing of her future. Are the things we do as kids portends of our future? Show us what we could be good at? How our relationships will be? To what extend we wil suffer? And perhaps even give us an inkling of how we will die?

Now, wouldn't that be a nifty endowment? But I guess most people would not want to know, not especially the parents.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Steps to solving a problem

1. Be open mided about finding a solution.
2. Be receptive to ideas, suggestions, comments or remarks given by others.
3. Find the root or depth of the problem rather than just the surface.
4. Look at the big picture of the entirety and also look into the little things.
5. Know that some problems don't need solutions but an acknowledgement.
6. Don't futher complicate it but simplify it.
7. If you can don't even consider it a problem. You have to remember that it may seem like a problem to you but not to others.
8. Finally, accept the end results whether it goes your way or is completely against the way you wanted it to be.

Friday, November 27, 2009

And my script comes to life...

This is quite amazing. The lead actor is also the director ... our very own Malaysian Donnie Yen!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Life is...

When I was younger I thought life was suppose to be complicated or at least meant to be a form of suffering. I used to look deep into a problem and see the entanglement for what it is. But then, even as a child who hasn't tasted the wealth of life and discover the enigma of existence, I always tried to unravel the complexities and extricate myself from the difficulties I faced. Each time I get out of them I realize the end result is nothing more than a simple solution. The question is not whether a problem can be solved but whether the people bound to it want it solved.

Last night, some like-minded acquaintances and I discussed the measures of life for what it is and what it should be. While one jested about it being a box of chocolate another said it's complicated and yet another said it's just the tip of the iceberg and every one of the supposition is true to the person who believes in it. Ultimately, life is what you make of it.

It is simple when you want it that way. It is bewildering if you think it is. It is mesmerzing when you believe it is.

Here are some beautiful quotes about life:

Life is pleasant. Death is peaceful. It's the transition that's troublesome.
Isaac Asimov

Life has taught us that love does not consist of gazing at each other, but in looking together in the same direction.
Antoine de Saint-Exupery

it is better to be happy for a moment and be burned up with beauty
than to live a long time and be bored all the while
Don Marquis

Monday, November 23, 2009

And we could all see it

I met a woman who was angry with everything
but she was just angry with herself
yet she didn't know it
but we could all see it.
She spoke of ill favored subjects
while she put down people
who she claimed are blinded
and nothing but shortsighted.
She used words like 'shit'
to describe an object
and stopped everyone from speaking
because she didn't want to hear it.
Her micro expressions were bitter
her body language exhibited dissatisfaction
with everything that she was
everything that she shredded.
I could hear her screaming for help
but she tried to hide the fact
that she was not doing so great
that she was a woman out of control.
She regurgitated sorrow and pain
but thought she was speaking with assertiveness
but she was falling apart, into pieces
and we could all see it.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

The Grim World as we know it

As it were, as it were,
I remember the coldness of people,
the hardness of hearts,
the mindlessness of minds
and the hopelessness of beings.
How can the world not end?
How can the ignorant not
be swept away by the waves of their disbelieve?
As you know, as you know,
it's all about to go.
The science of selfishness,
the art of acquisition,
and the math of manipulation.
Everyone is too eager to be first,
everyone is too anxious for abundance
but ends up swallowed up by their avariciousness.
Here it comes, here it comes,
the bursting sun, the propelling meteor,
the tectonic shifts, the cataclysmic sea,
something has to end the corrupted culture,
something has to cleanse the perverse nature
of hate and anger and fanatical structure.
There they go, there they go,
too busy warring with one another,
killing the innocent bystanders.
How much more can anyone take?
How long more can the world spin?
This is the grim world as we know it,
this is the end of days for those who want it.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Dancing in the Light Fantastic



Such magnificence. Such brilliance. Such  devotion to art. This was just a teaser, or a bite size taste of what Ramli Ibrahim and Guna did for us on a Saturday afternoon when they inspired us with their disciplined movements and expressions to rhythm and music of the Bharata Natyam.

It was mesmerizing to say the least and most gratifying in some spiritual way in a manner of speaking. Those of us who were watching this performance were blown away by their precision and energetic movements. It is always a delight to see people with such passion for their love of something so beautiful.

BHAva (expression) + RAga (musical mode) + TAla (rhythm) NATYAM (dance) = BHARATA NATYAM

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

To the sweetest man I know

To the sweetest man I know,

I write this letter to remind you
that I have loved many lovers
but I have never loved you any less.
I have been around the world
and find when I'm with you is best.
You may not hold the title
for man of the year
but you are my only idol
and you are everything I hold so dear.
You may not think sweetness count for much
or the fact that I am mercurial like the wind,
or when how I get swept off my feet and such
but I still come back to you on a whim.
I can get high on a can of beer
and end up in some strange, forbidden bed.
But I love you like unfounded fear
I would rather have tea with you instead.
My wild and partying days have just begun
I cannot tell a lie.
You will always be the one
whom I can confide in when I sober up and cry.
I know it's asking for too much
if I wanted you to stay
but you know I'll always want you
after my sordid reckless days.
You're the sweetest guy I know
who is sweeter than a honey bee.
Would you rather you don't know
or would you rather be with me?

How Do You Sleep at Night?

How can you sleep at night
when you know you've done
an injustice to someone else?
How can you wake up
and look at yourself in the mirror
knowing you've sacrifice someone for your glam and glitter?
How can you smile
with your neighbors and friends
when you have caused another hurt and harm?
How can you pray to your god
when you have denied a person
his dignity and rights to be someone?
How can you lie through your teeth
and think nothing of it
when you make others take the fall?
How can you kiss your loved ones
and embrace them with your tainted heart
when you know it's viciously twisted after all?
How can you dance and party to celebrate life
when you have taken away someone's
will to survive?
Tell me how do you sleep at night
when you have been
inconsiderate, irresponsible and uncompassionate
to another human being?
Do you get nightmares
or do you dream dreams?
Tell me how do you sleep at night?
Will your conscience get you when your eyes are shut tight?

Monday, November 2, 2009

Readings in the Rain, Singings that are Strange



Sekeping Tenggiri is a wonderful hideout for anyone who wants to get away from a conditioned reality to one that is completely surreal. To have my first reading experience there is such an honor and a treat. The rooms are specially designed for those who love things simple and tastefully done. I'd die for a place like that to call my own.

It was a hot day when we started the journey to look for this strange and hidden location. My nervousness to get my stories printed/photocopied for distribution, which never happen, during the last minute caused my friends to skip their lunch to spend the rest of the time looking for the Mackerel. We went round in circles for a while and poor Mien had to ask for directions from just about anyone and everyone. Eventually we did find this magical getaway perched on a slope among other common looking link houses.

Tan May Lee was the first to kick off today's readings from her coontribution from Body 2 Body, then there was Ellen Whyte talking about her mischievous cat story, Haslina Usman who is ressurecting her father's beautiful legacy of written works, the adorable Ethan and his mom, Rebecca Loke, promoting their book on alopecia universalis, Afi Momo's lovely lovely poems, Yvonne Foong and her hope team fighting NF (Neurofibronmatosis) and Whaowillow with a snippet of then up and coming play.


Just when my turn to read was coming round the corner, the skies darken as if in affirm and accompany my 'horror' reading for this Halloween Day. Needless it was absolutely prodigous in more ways than one. I love the rain (always thought of becoming a storm chaser) and the ambience was magically transformed to one that suited the story I was about to tell. And as you would have it, the rain drove everyone away from the open seating and strangely I was reading to the trees and rain as though they were my audience. What a wonderful and momentous event this reading turn out to be for me.

Next stop: KL Sing Song. The Saturday lineup was Slowjaxx, Edwin & Albert and Wani for the first segment and Pete Teo, Karen Nunis Blackstone and Meor. It was a night of bluesy, jazzy, candy pop, rock, roll and frantic fusion. Meor's outstanding compositions remind me of Jim Steinman's operatic and epic songs. As for Friday night's acts they include Izzy to Paolo Delfino and Liyana for the first half and Rendra Zawawi, Nick Davis and Melina William in the second. And for this night Rendra is the most distinguisable for his theatrical performance that suggests the bizarreness of Tim Burton and Andrew Llyod Webber.

And as all things must come to an end Naga's usually sums it all up pretty well.


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

My Maiden, Virginal, Debut reading



This long awaited reading of mine has finally arrived. I've disappointed one too many people before when I told them I wasn't ready, wasn't good enough and wasn't whatever. I don't know why I said yes almost immediately (which also took almost a day) after Sharon asked me but I know the name of the location 'Sekeping Tenggiri' has something to do with it. Which means a piece of mackerel (I'm including the entire fish here so not to sicken anyone).



Just like my writing, I write because it comes to me and it just is - so I guess my moment to read has also finally arrived - it just feels right.

I wonder what I would say about love and marriage when they come my way...

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Beginning of an End

Today marks the end of my trust and respect for someone whom I thought had everything going for her. To have someone stab you in the back, bite the hand that feeds and pull the carpet from below your feet is damaging in all aspects when you have opened your heart and soul for her.

I have always wanted to give people the benefit of the doubt even when I distrust them from the first meeting. There's some sort of a pattern to these sort of people when I think about it. They are extremely nice to you, want to know the world about you and vice versa and then something happens along the way to make them turn against you. The people who 'seems' to love you to death are the one who will kill you in the end.

The only emotion I feel is the great disappointment that questions that person's sudden change of heart and the hatred they harbor. I guess this marks another chapter of my life where another door is opened and not a moment too soon. So I leave the joy-less people behind as I kick the KL dust off my cheap slippery Bata shoes.

P.S.

And OMG I have been seeing 222 for a while now. And today too. And I met someone associated with the number too. Talk about signs ... I should have known.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

A Day with the Graffiti Artists in some big Longkang



What better way to spend a Saturday afternoon by the ginormous monsoon drain watching artists at work? The vastness of the supposedly filthy place is unimaginably cool and awesome. If only the river was a little cleaner the entire stretch might actually be The Seine of KL. Some neighborhood kids took their bicycles and watched us from across the river, a few men on bikes were chilling about, a guy was fishing from the toxic looking water (God forbid he's going to eat them after) and the artists were at work.



I have never seen such dedication and discipline as these artists expressing their heart and soul on the cold and colorless walls of the city.


Part of the old mural.





 



 

And then some...

Monday, October 12, 2009

Just another goodbye: Stephen Gately



 
Stephen Gately

17th March 1976 - 10th October 2009 

The year has not ended and another wonderful soul is taken.

Saturday Night at the Pleasure Dome

I haven't been to a wild and sexy party like forever. It was the first of a kind for me that started by surprising the birthday boy, having a round of bites, telling stories, sharing movies, dance, dance and dance, posing for incriminating pictures and giving each other massages, reiki and finger therapy. Now that's what I call a party!

I have never in my life attended a party with all these mixes like a bowl of ambrosial delight. I thought the night would never end.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

In Death no one Wins


The Annexe has made my life impossibly busy of late. Being my second home in many ways it has brought me closer to some people I know, got me new friends with familiar faces and some unexplainable spiritual connection with warriors of the like minded.

To start of a discussion at the Amnesty International for the World Day against the Death Penalty the movie The Life of David Gale was screened to a small group of audiences. Although the movie means well by supporting the cause of the protestors against the death penalty, the Deathwatchers, it was overdramatized and somehow loses its credibility. The death penalty or sentence is quite a cruel and unusual act when I think about it. It's basically the rule of an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth which in other words is nothing but vengeance taken from (Leviticus 24:19–21, Exodus 21:22–25, and Deuteronomy 19:21)

Two of the hardest things to do in any given moment in life are to forgive and to let go. To some punishment is validated by this concept of teaching someone else a lesson or getting someone to pay for something undesirable. But after having experienced Montfort Boys Town and CERIA in my life I now firmly believe that rehabilitation is a better choice.

A person in the audience asked if we would still be against the death penalty if someone we loved is the one murdered. It is a hard question to answer especially when we are in grief. We have to ask ourselves if we can forgive a wrong doer again and again and again if it ever comes to that.

Today also marks the end of my long search for a place to call my home, although temporary. Hidden behind the majestic and luxurious condo Ken III and Ameera is an unknown apartment known as Damansara Bestari tucked in between. It doesn’t have an impressive exterior but inside it’s really fine and lovely. For now, my hostel days go on a hiatus but I will be back.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

The Night the Stars Shined Out

Best time I had last night being with Ray Cheong and Jai Son aka Vandal at the Annexe. And to think I was thinking twice of going for the performance but decided I had to after checking their profiles online. For those who missed them be sure to check them out the next time you get a chance. Brilliant. Beautiful. Bold.





 

 


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Ah Lian's Define-Nation

What is racism to you?
Which one, the horse one or the car one?

Saturday, October 3, 2009

What's coming along and coming up

Yesterday, the second day of October, I was fortunate to get a glimpse of the trailer of the feature film 'Fist of Dragon'. It looks pretty good with the director/actor showing off his Kung Fu skills and looking very much like Donnie Yen at some angles. If the movie's going to be a big hit in the market girls (and probably some guys) will go head over heels for the director cum actor. And for the first time I'm going to see my name on the big screen like I've never dreamt I could. We are all eagerly waiting for the premiere next year, so now I have at least one most anticipated event for 2010.

Next on the list I rewrote a new script for Black Diary (one which many writers wrote when we first met the director as a test piece) into some fantastical story that is an experimental piece shot on the green screen and incorporated with 3D effects. I also got the chance to see some of the completed scenes and they just blew my mind away! The 3D animator/modeller did a magnificent job which is in the league of other movies in the similar vein. Since this is the first attempt of the movie of this kind for the production company I feel extremely thrilled to be a part of their gungho attitude to venture into this area. Now that's another thing to look forward too.

Finally, since good things come in 3, my short horror stories will be realized into print as well! Woohoo! After all these years of writing, that's really amazing when I look back with tons of rejection, thinking maybe I wasn't cut out to be a writer. And I just can't imagine how far I've come. Thank god I've always believed it's more love than success that has kept me writing, writing and writing until today.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

It's a Man's World after all

I heard a truly funny conversation between a mother and a mom-to-be today. "Hi," they both exchanged greetings. Then the mother who had a little girl of 6 or 7 asked the expecting mother. "When are you due?" "Actually, anytime now," the mom-to-be caressed the bulge on her stomach and beamed with such a radiance I could just go blind looking at her. "Do you know?" the experienced mother asked. As though by some telepathic connection the mom-to-be nods her head and smiles sheepishly, "It's a boy." "Good, good." The other woman replied. "There are too many girls around," she continued. "Really?" The mom-to-be asked innocently while she glowed in the darkening sky. "Ya, ya, if you look around they are just too many girls around." And then they said their goodbyes.

I wonder what the woman would tell her friend if she was carrying a baby girl instead. Sometimes I wonder if women know why it's a man's world after all.

Sometimes you just gotta lie through your teeth

I'm not one who lies easily. In fact I am such a bad liar I hardly ever get away with it. But sometimes, just sometimes you gotta lie through your teeth and bones to avoid certain unpleasantness or disaster and that's what I dislike most. The worst case scenario I've recently experienced is to be caught in a friend's father's string of interrogations. On one hand I would have liked to tell him word for word, truth for truth for every question he puts before me. But because of his age, his old school ideals and his traditional outlook at what should be in life I was stuck with the ridiculousness of telling him what he wants to hear. This almost one way conversation is like a fracture on glass. I could feel the hairline cracks begin with each inquisitory demand he has to want to know why or how or what.

With cold invisible sweat running down my back, I told a little white lie and extended it to the next and before I knew it I was shaking with trepidation. Not that I believe that I will go to hell or get my tongue sliced off but the fact that I am writing a script in my mind to entertain this elderly man because I didn't know how much truth he can take. I didn't want to be responsible for his heart to give way or his ideal world to crumble down or his grasp of life as he knows it to be shredded to pieces.

By lying to him I thought I was being considerate but then again was I patronizing him by assuming that he couldn't handle the truth?

Gee whiz, what would anyone do in this situation?

Monday, September 28, 2009

The things that we justify

The conman justifies his crime with the gullible and the greedy.
The parents justify their irresponsibility with the need to feed the family.
The children justify their trouble making with the lack of attention at home.
The husband justifies his infidelity with his wife's losing interest in sexual activity.
The wife justifies her incessant shopping and frivolous lifestyle with her husband's lack of romantic gestures.
The addict justifies his obsession with his disrupted childhood.
The writer justifies his inability to write with writer's block.
The performer justifies his lack of talents with his need for fame.
The religious justify their fanaticism with God's wrath.
The media justify their sensationalism with the freedom of the press.
The sex workers justify their profession with poverty and lack of education.
The murderers justify their killings with insanity, paranormal activity and religion.
The authorities justify their brutality with security for the common people.
The government justifies its anti human rights policies with the nation's inability to think for themselves.
The fearful justify their indifference with the want of peace.
The angry justify their outbursts with stress.
The dying justify their end with fate or the will of God or one of those things.
And everyone wants to know the world is in such a justifiable state.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Of late

I have been feeling more and more like there's little hope for humanity, or the majority of them.

I've been seeing 1111 or 111 frequently everywhere I look.

I've been missing nature, the company of trees.

I've been feeling lost in the city, knowing that it's not my home.

I've been feeling like an out of body experience even when I'm awake and conscious.

I've been seeing images at the corners of my eyes.

I've been hearing whispers, sometimes my name, sometimes a word.

I've been experiencing synchronous events.

I've been zapped from energy in some places with some people.

I've been having pulsating energies in the palm of my hands.

I'm been having intense dreams & nightmares, some with premonitory suggestions.

I've been missing home. A home unlike this world...

Monday, September 21, 2009

Hey! Watch where you're peeing!

What is it with boys, guys, men who pee all over toilet seats? If they are below three years old I might actually understand that it's impossible to reach or control their little weenies. But otherwise, how can they not know why peeing all over a toilet seat is a barbaric act that will cause more than just inconvenience? Isn't that obvious? But why do they still do it? God almighty! How are these males raised in the first place?

Is this some kind of a conspiracy theory or unsolved mystery of the world that can only be classified under the X-files? This strange phenomenon is experienced by women all over the world and there is no cure for their men and boys.

(sung to the song 'Why can't the English? from My Fair Lady, more or less)
Why can't a man learn how to pee?
Why can't he hold it and aim with discreet?
And not spray all over like a storm in the sea,
Why can't a man just sit on the seat?

Friday, September 18, 2009

I heard someone who doesn't speak very good English say to his friend: "You are so homosensual" or at least it sounded that way to me. I wonder what kind of new sexuality that is? Sounds intriguing though.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Fake

He talks like a big man
but he's just a little fry.
And everyone knows it
but he doesn't want to believe it.
She throws herself around like a diva
but she's just a little flicka
And everyone knows it
but she refuses to acknowledge it.
He lashes out his sermon like the right hand of god
but he's just a man in a garb
And everyone knows it
but he is blinded by his egoistical flub.
She struts about with her gold and gain
but she's just a photo in a frame
And everyone knows it
but she's too vain to admit it.
He loves to flaunt his authority
but he's just really a nobody
And everyone knows it
but he tends to forget how his heart beats.
And when no one can stand it anymore
they fall apart, they disintegrate
And everyone knows it
but few want to do anything about it.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Patrick Swayze: The Dirty Dancing Cross Dressing Ghost

 
 18th August, 1952 - 14th September, 2009
Yet another death this year to add to the long list of talented celebrities. Patrick Swayze thrilled us with his sensual dance that made the news in Dirty Dancing, came back as a charming ghost in Ghost and cross-dressed for To Wong Foo, 
Thanks for everything! Julie Newmar.
May you continue to thrill the heavens.

Near Misses, Lost Wishes

I've always had near misses in my life. From jobs opportunities to relationships to what not. I am the one who almost always got it but end up not getting it. If I were to measure my misses in a worldly yardstick there would have been great misfortunes and hundred and one regrets. But strangely, because of the near misses that I left behind I got other things instead that shaped me to be who I am today.

You can understand the near misses in your life as God's divine intervention or the inevitable predetermination of fate or your subconscious request from the laws of attraction. Whatever you believe to be true, near misses in your life is not fatal. It's not the one and only chance you'll get that will never come your way again. Life is not such but a series of occurrences that are connected from one source to another. Why you missed that moment in life can only be answered by yourself. Perhaps you were not ready to accept the truth, perhaps you were better off letting it go, and perhaps you knew deep within you that it was not what you wanted in the first place.

When you are ready to hear the answers they will come back to you like an epiphany. But if you refuse to listen and you still want to hang on to what you lost you will never come to that realization of transcendence. You may continue to be bitter and drown in the sorrow you only know too well for the rest of your life.

When you think about it, it’s not about what you didn’t get in life that’s important, it’s about the things that you got that is worth treasuring. Anyway, how sure are you that it’ll make your life more exciting, fulfilling and satisfying if you get what you’ve always been longing for?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Always remember this,
you will be fine
and everything will be wonderful.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Some of the most beautiful things in life are always there for us to see if we would only open our eyes, our hearts and our minds.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

The Night Skies in my Eyes

Here I am sitting at the dining table - it's always the dining table for me even at Hartamas and in Taiping and most places I go - clicking away on the keyboard looking out the window with the view of the city lights. The KL tower is sparkling away like camera flashes of paparazzi and the twin towers look as though they are about to take off into outer space any minute now.

I am just back from a short swim in the pool, having eaten a simple fried rice dinner and now all cleaned up and in my night dress surfing away. What I can't believe is the complete transition or change that occurred almost at a snap of the finger. When I was still back home in Taiping all I could see through the windows are obscure shadows of trees and when I was in Hartamas there were only the road and street lamp. Now it's the cityscape. I lived all these 3 places in a day on Monday and I am still nonplussed at the speed which events could happen.

Life's changes can be drastic and immediate. Once it's gone it's gone. Once it's here it's here. You just have to be prepared for it, for anything so that you would be able to readapt yourselfwithin a short period of time. Taking too long to accept the inevitable can be draining on the heart, body, soul and mind.


There may be questions as to why change is necessary but if you just listen to your heart and trust your instincts the universe will reveal the reasons behind it. As I was floating on the water looking at the night sky just now I was elated and contented to know we do make a difference to everyone we meet and leave, it'sjust how much we give or take from them.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Broken

It's like it never was
a house,
a home.
The company,
the money.
When everything is sorted out
something else is runied.
Sometimes you try
hard as you can
but they just won't
come together.
Like how you wish it to,
like how you want it to,
like how you need it to.
Sometimes,
things just fall apart
and remain broken
because that's how
everyone wants it to be.
They stay trapped,
they stay strapped,
they stay wrecked.
There's no communication,
there's no interaction,
there's only indecision
that spins out of control.
Get smacked,
get whacked,
get staked
up like garbage.
Some people are in pieces,
some are in stitches,
and all caught up with wishes
yet broken
they remain.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Now, this is truly Independence Day


Alain Robert (7 August 1962) climbed the 88 story high Petronas Twin Tower in less than 2 hours. His first attempt was March 20, 1997 and then again in the year 2007 but he failed to reach the top after being intercepted on the 60th floor.

Anyone who wants to know what passion is should know that Robert suffers from permanent vertigo and the doctors consider him to be 60% handicap. He has fallen 7 times but climbed over 85 skyscrapers and monuments.

Now that's the power of positive thinking.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Independence and all that Spaz

Independence...
so what is it?
Liberty? Freedom?
Emancipation?
Deliverance?
What is it? What is it?
Why would a country
that discriminates
certain groups of people
celebrate independence day?
What reason could it possibly have?
Was it tormented?
Was it ostracized?
Was it prejudiced against?
If so, why can't the country understand
what it's like for her nation,
for the minority
who feels the same?
Ban them,
censor them,
cast them aside,
ignore them,
warn them,
sweep them under the tide,
silence them,
shut them,
lock them up,
dictate them,
rule them,
ship them out
and then celebrate independence day
hooray hooray!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

in the end

if u don't go out and love someone
in the end
he would have gone unloved

if you don't go out to forgive someone
in the end
he goes down unforgiven

if you don't go out and be one with nature
in the end
she will be a barren and empty space

if you don't go out and stop denying the truth
in the end
you would continue to live your miserable lie

if you don't go out and embrace love
in the end
you would find yourself still longing for it

if you don't out and get a move on
in the end
you would be nothing but a wallow of self-pity

if you don't go out to make your dreams happen
in the end
you will be an unhappy little person

if you don't go out and dance the dance
in the end
you would have missed the celebration

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

What a day! What a day!


Yesterday my tooth broke. One third fell out while I was crunching away some oven roasted green beans. A little later while having dinner another one third added to my collection. Since it is a dead tooth, thank God for that, there was no pain. So I thought I'd go to the dentist today to see if he could salvage this stark emptiness in my mouth.

This morning my mom came home and told me she fell into the drain while visiting my dad who is having his chemo done in the hospital. She showed me her enormously swollen hand and I lost my cool asking her why she came home when she should have gone straight to the doctors.

When we calmed down, me especially, I got my cousin to drive us to the clinic to check and see if it was any serious. After a long long wait the general practitioner, Dr. Lim Hock Gee, told us it was a common occurrence for little old ladies to fall and fracture their wrists and the next thing to do was to go to an orthopedic surgeon to get it fixed in a cast.

And so we headed for the Taiping Medical Center to get my mom the proper medical attention. It was 1.30pm and we hadn't had lunch and I didn't have much money in my pocket. I got me mom to the x-ray department after a quick lunch and then to the bank for a large withdrawal, or at least large enough for me.

Soon we were at the ward waiting for the surgeon, Dr. T. Moses, after two and waited until he was available at about four. While my mom was getting her treatment I went for a teh tarik to catch my breath because the entire day literally fell on me like the sky did on chicken little.

It all seem like a dream. Like a story I have yet to write. Like some scene out of a play or movie. When it was over at 6 we came back home and found that the dog ate up a chunk of meat my mom bought earlier which we forgot to refrigerate.

Now that we have showered and rested from the day I am still vaguely awake from this incredible day.

I thank all the staff at the Taiping Medical Centre for being courteous, caring and kind. Tonight I can sleep well knowing my mom's fine but my tooth remains broken as a reminder that life is so so fragile.

Monday, August 24, 2009

I Love the Fact

I love the fact
that I am blessed
with the grace
to accept life without haste.
I love the fact
that I have children
without having
to engage myself into a wedding.
I love the fact
that I have
an alternative family
where we come together naturally.
I love the fact
that I am in great company
with friends and people
who are wonderfully enjoyable.
I love the fact
that I know
what I want in life
and everything makes perfect sense.
I love the fact
that I am meeting
more like-minded people
who believes that life is a celebration.
I love the fact
that all I want
is to sing and dance and be happy
cos' in the end I know I am only energy.
I love the fact
that I believe
we reap what we sow,
we become what we know.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Review: Body2Body: A Malaysian Queer Anthology


On the day of the book signing of Body2Body I was flanked in between two illustrious authors who were no stranger to the writing circuit in and out of Malaysia. Lauded for their previous works that were well received by their readers I sat timidly listening to an elderly man congratulating Shih-Li Kow for Ripples and other stories, which is shortlisted for the Frank O'Connor award, and praising Brian Gomez for his excellent Devil's Place. After Shih-Li, sitting on my left, finished signing her page the man looked at me and I could imagine him asking me telepathically 'You want to sign ah?' but he said instead, "Where is your page?", which is also a nicer way to say 'I don't really know who you are'. I smiled at him and whispered, "I am page 165" and went on to scribble an artistic signature anticipating some form of fame in the future.

Of course I had my own fan-based friends who made a little rumpus when they came to me just to spice up the moment. I hadn't realized the Pilot marker pen I borrowed, used and forgot to return soaked through and made a mess of the back page. So if I am not remembered for my writing, well at least I will be remembered as the writer who messed up that wonderful book.

I am such a slow reader I may only be able to review this book by early next year if I read the way I do. So what I did instead was to pick and choose the stories from authors I knew as well as those for their semi-celebrity status (this is Malaysia, the only celebrities are the politicians).

Brian Gomez's What do Gay People eat? is an amusing tale of food, acceptance and similarity. It's a real laugh if you have had the chance to experience such an event in your life because it could really happen. I had the privilege to hear Cheryl Leong's sharing a few nights before hearing her read Breathing Pure Oxygen which is a wonderful heart-warming confessional, testimonial and outing of her sexuality. Her self-denying self-discovery journey will be felt most by people who live in closets and who are fighting the worst enemy which is themselves.

How can anyone not love Shannon Shah? He sings like an angel, he writes like an artist and he hugs like a teddy bear. Muslim 2 Muslim is his biographical contribution of his childhood days that shaped and determine the man that he is today who is everything from an activist, a journalist, a playwright, a scriptwriter and a singer-songwriter.

Pang's story Cream of the Crop reminds me so much of my own unpublished novel where it is set in a boy's school and to add even more to the coincidence (which I don't believe anything is a coincidence but I can't find a better word to describe it) I have a character by the name of Larry and there was a death of a friend that changed my life as well. While reading his story I kept wondering if we both travelled on parallel worlds.

In Harry is Dead you have no idea where the story is going until it's gone. If you are like me, sometimes I wonder if I am reading too much into something that's not there, I am dying to ask Shih-Li Kow 'Is Harry..?' but I am too embarrassed because you don't ask writers what their story is all about. You either get it or you don't. So in my case I'm not sure.

Then I went on to Jerome's Alvin about sexual encounters and relationships, looking for love in all the wrong places. If Jerome had spent more time on this little story and extends it into a full length book it might actually read like a good erotica (or so I wish). We're all adults here so don't give me that look.

That's as far as I got and of course my own story Friends of Everyone, which was initially called A Straight Man's Closet, is a satire, a parody and a paronomasia on all things gay and wonderful. Basically, it's about a man who believes that he is cured from this lifestyle but then again is he really?

One of the funnier anecdotes was shared by Amir about how he approached the printer to get this anthology published. If you didn't catch it during the book launch probably you can hear it again when he launches this book in Singapore, I believe, or you could ask him when you see him.

So far, my favorite page would remain at page 5 for obvious reasons. This is the side of Malaysia Boleh that only a few would know but if you have a chance to pick this up you'll also know that Malaysia also Got Talent wat.

Ta Da Dum

After two weeks and more of physically-demanding events, soul-searching agendas, heart-warming moments and mind-taxing challenges I am finally back home to tranquility, fresh air and the sounds of nature.

When I woke up this morning I felt like I could just break out into a Happy Working Song (from Enchanted) or Whistle While You Work (from Snow White) and summon the mynahs, bulbuls, sparrows, orieoles, kingfishers, doves, gibbons, skinks, house lizards, insects, cats and the two dogs to help start the day.

It was cloudy and yet sunny, cool and yet warm, quiet and yet full of songs.

Ta da dum as I stir on my soft and cushy bed,
Feeling the sun's kiss on my cheek and head,
The birds and bees humming a tuneful whisper
and the dogs sashayed in to bring my slipper.

I waltz into the bathroom with a silly smile and grin,
the lizards hand me the toothbrush as they sing,
Every tooth must be accounted for to keep it strong and healthy
Backing up the song are the bed bugs, ticks and fleas.

The doves help me out of my pasar malam nightdress,
And get me ready for a nasi lemak, teh tarik breakfast,
After I had my fill of carbs I turned my computer on,
With the dog on my lap I write this little ta da dum song.

Ahhh ... isn't life wonderful?

Thursday, August 20, 2009

From my Son's blog

168- 16Aug 2009

168... it is a strange day.
861... my house number.
168... my coming out date.
861... just a number that i lived in for 10 years...
168... meant a lot to me.
861... there a so many memory.
168... some accepted me, some may not.
861... i am planning to leave.
168... new life is coming to me.
861... thanks for protecting me all this years.
168... i got the courage to accept what i am.
861... my mom could not accept what i am, it take time.
168... my the other mom happy to accept who i am.
861... mom, sorry for making u suffer.
168... feel lighter, not more heavy lifting in future.
861... starting to feel strange, awkward in the house.
168... i know i can live better.

861-168 my journey starts, feel like everything getting easier. All word i don't have to think twice before i could have said it. It is really nice to being myself.

I am what i am. after 24 years of denying who i am. At last, i got the "balls" to accept who i am.

LOL
Love n Peace

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Body2Body, Soul2Soul

Body 2 Body is in limited release. More than 100 Malaysian shops that normally stock Matahari Books titles will NOT be carrying it. Because this is a special book that, erm, deserves special treatment :-)

Let's support the 4 shops that have it right now:

1. Kinokuniya KLCC, in the Social Science section (Tel: 03 216...)
2. Times Pavilion (Tel: 03 2148 8813 )
3. Times Bangsar Shopping Centre ( Tel: 03 2095 3509 )
4. Silverfish Bangsar ( Tel: 03 2284 4837 )

As well as these 6 that will be stocking it in the next few days:

5. Borders The Curve (Tel: 03 7725 9303)
6. Borders Berjaya Times Square ( Tel: 03 2141 0288 )
7. Borders The Gardens (Tel: 03 2287 4530)
8. Borders Tropicana ( Tel: 03 7727 9203 )
9. Borders Queensbay Mall, Penang (Tel: 04 646 8758 )
10. Bookzone Penang ( Tel: 04 226 5585 )

Please call ahead to make sure it's in stock, and reserve if you wish. You can cite the title or the ISBN: 978-983-43596-9-0 .

If you want to be absolutely certain of getting it, you can order online from
Kinibooks. Kinibooks is run by Malaysiakini, an organisation whose take on expressive freedom I find more agreeable than the stance taken by, erm, some actual bookshops.

By contrast, it will be more widely available in Singapore from next week. It's primarily the Singapore orders that have ensured that the book goes into its 2nd print next week.

For those outside the region, there's
Amazon (it's temporarily out of stock now but will be restocked in less than a week).

Thank you for your support lah :-)

By the way the launch was great; we got rid of 256 books, a new Matahari Books record.(The previous record was 188 for Vol 1 of Malaysian Politicians Say the Darndest Things). Perhaps the people who came never realised that the book will be a wee bit tricky to obtain in Malaysia afterwards.


* pinched from Amir's blog - Amir I pinch ah (http://amirmu.blogspot.com/)