Sunday, July 19, 2009

WARNING: YOU ARE BEING MONITORED!


Ahhah! now that's a new verb. I guess I deserve to be MONITORED if I don't do well in my C Programming next time.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

What the...

Now this is one of the many reasons why I shouldn't have gone back to Malaysia.


But oh well, I guess I really need a break from all those stressful programming assignments and indulge myself with superb, tasty and CHEAP Malaysian foods. But ahh...Paul McCartney! That's a living Beatle I just missed. And considering MJ's sudden passing, I'm starting to worry if I will ever get a chance to see at least one of the two remaining Beatles perform before they go on to meet John and George. New Yorkers, boooo! that's just not fair!

You want music?


So you want music? Let's go all the way down to the roots. Now isn't it hard not to find beauty in simplicity?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Proof that we sucked at jamming...

video
Location: SS14 jamming studio
Personnel: Nik, Kandaq, Chot, Erare, Q, Lan

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Goodbye King Of Pop, Hello King Of Fruits

A few days ago, the final curtain was brought down for the King of Pop(not a soda as Pittsburghers often refer to) with a grand funeral that lasted 3 hours and beamed to billions of viewers all over the globe. Seriously, the internet connection sucked real bad that day (as if it doesn't on any other days with Streamyx) as an effect of the 19% increase in the net traffic(thank you MJ). However, I thought the whole thing was priceless. I mean, to be able to be alive at that moment and witness history in the making was awesome, especially since I missed the King of Rock n' Roll's funeral(damn Elvis! should've waited for me). But yeah I thought it was carried out well, I was entertained and honestly a lil' bit moved by the speeches. So yinz might think I'm a big fan of MJ? No I'm not. I mean yes I love a few songs of his and I just have to admit that his moves were wicked but nothing more than that. No posters of him in my bedroom and I'll stay a faithful fan of John Lennon and The Beatles. I don't see any reason for me to suddenly become a fan of MJ after he died just like the rest of the world (oh yeah the number of his "fans" suddenly tripled). You called him Wacko Jacko while he was still alive and suddenly now you're a big fan! Just so you feel good by being a part of the big news huh? So that one day, you'll be able tell your grandchildren how lucky you were that you had the chance to live in the golden era of pop and seeing MJ doing his moonwalk. I have nothing against true fans of MJ, you have all the rights to like what you like, love whom you love. But I do have a problem with the pretenders. Now this post is getting a lil' bit overwrought don't you think? So lets shove this aside and talk about something else, still related to MJ but not his "fans". So yes he was the king and will always be the king just like Elvis but ever wondered what made them eligible to be crowned the "king of ..."?

Well, Let Me Tell You Something...

...about what I think are the factors that propel an artist's status from just a regular celebrity to a legend. I'll get to the King of Fruits later don't worry. Let's start with Elvis Aaron Presley. So let's see, he's got a wide vocal range, handsome and charismatic. Is that enough? To label him as a legend? Nope! Definitely not. So what sets Elvis apart from the others of his time? His moves! Yes the minute he started his "bukak kuda-kuda" moves, all the girls went wild (not referring to "Girls Gone Wild" nope). Why, you may ask? It's simply because it was revolutionary, something no one has ever seen or done before. And that guitar he's holding? It didn't even have strings. No seriously I'm not jokin, it didn't have any! Not to say that Elvis didn't know how to play the guitar but it's just to show how everything was focused on his singing and dancing. And the extra props, they're just there to embellish the performance. So that's one factor, "Revolutionary". It didn't last long tho. All those moves...overshadowed by The Beatles later on. Well we do know that The Beatles weren't dancers. In fact I think if they tried to, they might lose tons of fans. So what makes them so special that some fans even see Beatlemania as a whole new religion with Lennon/McCartney as the god? They write their own songs. Really good songs. They've got all those emotion-related things going on by writing their own material. It's almost as if Lennon & McCartney were begging, "I wanna hold your hand!" to their fans. Or serenading them by saying "Let it be...". It's creativity and originality that really matters in the 60s. This explains Elvis' major downfall when the boys from Liverpool emerged. Elvis didn't write his own materials and depended solely on others to give him good songs. Yes he did have a bigger capacity to lay down a much more powerful vocal performance but after a while, people tend to look for a fresher concept. And considering it's The Beatles, never afraid to experiment on all kinds of genres and abstractions, plus their tendency of changing their appearances abruptly for example having a beard on one day and a clean shave on the next, it's hard to ever get bored with the fab four. They literally transformed from a band of pretty boys with mop tops to full fledged rockers producing magnum opuses. I remember reading somewhere, "The 60s was all about trying to be different and the 60s was The Beatles". So now we have this "Revolutionary" and "Deviance" thing going on by taking Elvis and The Beatles as examples. Try to combine both of them; you'll get Michael Jackson! Let's do an analysis on the King of Pop:
  • Powerful Vocals ............................................. ✔
  • Dance Moves ................................................. ✔
  • Charisma ....................................................... ✔
  • Original Songs ................................................ ✔
  • Changes in Appearance/Deviance ....................
Now doesn't that make perfect sense why he is eligible to be crowned the King of Pop (and some say the best entertainer ever)? Yes it does and I totally feel that the title is fitting for his qualities but nope I'm still not a fan. Don't ask me why, I am just not. So let me talk less about MJ and more about "being different", which reminds me of the other "King" in the title, the King of Fruits. You may wonder what's so fookin' different about durians compared to other fruits. They are very...very...different! Different from other fruits that are known to be nutritious and provide us with the vital vitamins and minerals and what not. Apparently, a durian doesn't. Well, a few days ago I went to the un-KL side of Kuala Lumpur: Kampung Baru with my parents to grab some ayam goreng rempah, gulai keting, begedel and teh sosro for our lunch/dinner. But before that my mom wanted to go to this one shop and so my dad and I had to wait inside the car as parking slots are only for those who don't mind leaving their car in the drain. And so we waited in the car in front of this sidewalk durian stall owned by a grumpy-looking-but-trying-to-act-friendly pakcik. We were definitely blocking his stall from the view of others. And so as to pacify him, my dad decided to grab a few kilos and off we went to Restoran Garuda Masakan Minang, leaving the durians in the car, thus sacrificing the odorless fresh air inside. So back to the original topic of being deviant, and durian being a perfect example of a fruit that's different from the others considering its lack of nutritional values, they are definitely the King of Fruits. D24 & Tembaga, you made my day! Sedap gila although panas badan malam tu. So here are a few pictures of the durians and the food in Kampung Baru:

Friday, July 10, 2009

RUKUNEGARA

  • KEPERCAYAAN KEPADA TUHAN
  • KESETIAAN KEPADA RAJA DAN NEGARA
  • KELUHURAN PERLEMBAGAAN
  • KEDAULATAN UNDANG-UNDANG
  • KESOPANAN DAN KESUSILAAN
Yep, I've got "RUKUNEGARA" nicely shoved back into my head again after seeing this facial tissue box:

It's printed everywhere now. I'd beat the daylights out of any Malaysians for not knowing RUKUNEGARA.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Komposit.Karboksilik.Asid.Elektrolit.Bullshit

"saya rasa amat bangga lah sebab perjuangan kami untuk memartabatkan bahasa melayu berjaya dengan pembubaran PPSMI"
-some effin DBP guy on the radio

Hello?? what in the world is wrong with us Malaysians? For all I know, we were heading the right direction then suddenly it's a big U-turn back to the old ways. Why the hell are we going backwards when the rest of the world are leaving us behind? What good does abolishing PPSMI do for our beloved Bahasa Melayu? Do you seriously think that by doing so, our Bahasa Melayu will be protected? Is it worth scrapping "Pengajaran dan Pembelajaran Sains dan Matematik dalam Bahasa Inggris" for the sake of our mother-tongue?

Well, Let Me Tell You Something...

...about the reality of our bahasa. Those people who blamed PPSMI by suggesting that it's assassinating our adored Bahasa Melayu never realized the fact that DBP is constantly importing English words into our Kamus Dewan Bahasa. Once imported, these "bahasawans" coined the term "bahasa bombastik(also an english word btw.)" to the new jargons. Take for example;

  • anjakan paradigma(paradigm shift) - peralihan paradigma drpd satu lingkungan atau batasan kpd sesuatu yg baru (biasanya kpd yg lebih baik).
  • konklusi(conclusion) - keputusan pendapat (berdasarkan keterangan, kenyataan, dll), kesimpulan.
  • sukses(oh I'm sick of malay girls on tele wishing their friends "semoga suksess!!!") - hasil drpd sesuatu (kegiatan, usaha, dll), terhasilnya (sesuatu), kejayaan.
* yes, all these definitions are from Kamus Dewan Bahasa Edisi(there's another one!) Keempat.
** I guess we need an anjakan paradigma in the way Malaysians use their brains.

Now that I'm done talking about Bahasa Melayu and its so-called "pejuangs", let's look at the other side of the story, the latest horror movie in Malaysian theatres entitled "ENGLISH!!". Imagine a huge poster of a teacher in a classroom teaching science in english, with the caption, "Language Does Matter". Now honestly, back when I was in school, science and maths were taught in bahasa so we students never had any problems(back then) understanding what Rosnani(our beloved Chemistry teacher) said. But, the BIG problem arose when we started our freshmen year in universities, when we had to reassign "get logik" as "logic gates" and "pengamiran" as "integration". And oh man I just have to say that the level of science and maths in colleges are way much harder than the ones taught in schools. So now is the time for the big question. Would you prefer to see our students suffer learning science and maths in schools(when they're still in the introductory level) or suffer later on in universities trying to catch up with the rest of the world? But oh wait. Perhaps these students don't even care if they're left behind, they would most probably walk away nonchalantly saying, "Ah nanti aku bukak bisnes sendiri ah! kaya jugak!". It's not about having a job or becoming some datuk one day, it's about grasping the ever expanding world of knowledge and exterminating ignorance in our community. The thirst for wisdom is what Malaysians are seriously lacking.

Another problem with the implemetation of PPSMI was that the teachers weren't proficient enough. Some might say it was due to lack of training but no I just don't agree. It's just the fact that learning a new language is just not an easy task especially when a person's passed a certain age. So I don't blame those teachers entirely. Let's look at things in a slightly different perspective. Instead of the government spending millions of ringgits to train these "cikgu sains dan matematik" to speak and teach in english, why not teach those already adept english teachers science and maths? As I've stated above, learning a new language is never easy; but learning facts and figures are way much simpler that they could almost be done on the fly! So instead of trying to teach those "Rosnanis" english, why not teach those english teachers elements of the periodic table? But oh well, I guess it's just a lil' bit too late for any suggestions.

So it looks like komposit, karboksilik, asid, elektrolit and bullshit will
remain in Malaysian schools.

suka hati korang lah!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Great Food, Great Friends, Not So Great Music

Here I am again after a frickin good time with my budak koleqs around PJ: Murni & some shitty jamming studio in Section 14, PJ. On my way to SS2, I was about to say, "eh sejak bila dia tukar tempat ni?" when I realized nope, it's been almost a year since the last time I was there. Jaya Supermarket was still intact then. So no problem with the area or the road system, it's just that I've forgotten how messy the area was.

So, Let Me Tell You Something...

...about the food at Murni. Considering the fact that the owner of this "mamak" is the brother of William, the proud owner of a sidewalk-stall "fine dining" restaurant that boasts an array of great dishes served in abundance despite the lack of a carte du jour, I wasn't entirely satisfied with it. I mean, yeah the location is way much better than William's; food was good but not great, the portion was surprisingly "medium", totally incomparable to William's XL dishes. I don't take price as a consideration, because I sincerely don't mind spending some extra ringgits for good food. So, yeah Murni didn't meet my expectations. Blame it on William's for serving me impressive foods, thus giving me the ultimate grounds for comparison of which is better of the two brothers. Oh by the way, I ordered "Nasi Goreng Maryland" which is basically a Nasi Goreng USA with a big piece of boneless bread-crumbed chicken fillet and fries instead of udang and sotong. The telur stays. I don't find it any special, if compared to William's Nasi Goreng Ketam which I madly craved when I was in Pittsburgh despite the existence of Primanti Bros and Salem's and Red Robin. It's just not the same! But I'll surely give Murni another try someday, Roti Bacon Cheese probably? Yeah my friend ordered it and it looked totally insane! Imagine roti naan being stuffed with a whole lotta cheese and bacon(beef bacon I suppose?) served with its two classic kuahs: mint sauce and kari plus another one, SUSU MANIS!!! I aint gonna live long if I were to have that regularly. But just for the sake of searching for the ultimate Murni dish and considering the fact that we only live once, I'll make a point to get that thing clogging up my arteries(if not entirely, partly clogged is good enough).

Now, Let Me Tell You Something...

...about how I(or should I say we) sucked at jamming. Well, after almost a year of not stepping into a studio, I guess I'm being excused for my shitty drumming and rusty guitar skills; yes I tried both and I totally felt as if I'm back in those "Studio Muzik Zai Am in Kuala Kangsar as a form three" days. A year spent in Pittsburgh, I've totally devoted myself to strictly play only acoustic guitars. I do have an electromagnetic-pickup guitar(or electric guitar for short) which I do strum once in a while but to jamm with three others on rhythm, bass and drums is a totally different situation. To erare, kdq, chot, q and lan, I apologize for hurting your eardrums. You guys weren't any good either. Hahah! Let's just say, we're all just too old for those good ol' raging jamming days. I swear I was wayy much better when I was 17.

"eh nik! amp ni tak bagus ah!"
"memang ah. tapi ko pun dah karat kdq."

p/s: I don't have any pictures of Murni.

happy faces, crazy fellahs!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

I Started A Blog, Which Started The Whole World Reading...

Hey! You there. yes you!
Hah, kamu! ye, kamu la siapa lagi!!
Weh mung! Mung la sapo lagi gak! Demo ni degey do'oh!

Take that! I know three distinct languages (ho yeah "bhaso kelate" is a whole different language). So wait, why am I writing this? Why the hell am I here on Blogger even? Did I just received a revelation from up above to start writing? Demam ke? Or did the MSB (Malaysian Boredom Syndrome) transformed this anti-blogging Nik Munawwar into a guy who suddenly feels the necessity to tell the whole world what he's got in his head?

Oh well, Let Me Tell You Something...

Honestly, I've never been interested in blogging and was never a fan of blogs. Yeah I know, my housemate Shazwan Azizan is a hell of a great blogger. Try visiting his blog, you won't see rubbish lying around in the form of photos or song lyrics or videos, but ideas being written everyday (well, almost) in utter brilliance. But no, that's not the reason why this blog is in existence. Well, two days ago I was going through this one blog, reading through almost everything from the first ever post up till the latest. And one blog leads to another and I ended up reading 9 frickin blogs just that morning. So I asked myself, "why in the world would anyone want to write a diary-like writing, and posting it on the internet so that the whole world could read?" It's as if the whole world is becoming more and more desperate for attention. But let's face the fact that we humans just love to know what the hell is happening to other humans all around the world. That explains why Facebook is damn addictive! You get updates of all your friends automatically in front of you without having to incur the risk of gossiping and getting caught making up stories.

"Ali is in a relationship with Abu."
"Wha? he's gay? No wonder la dulu selalu masuk bawah katil aku konon nak cari maggi"

So by the way, I decided that one fine day, I'm gonna give blogging a try before I die. It's in the list of top 10 things I have to do before I get the hell out of this world. Why? So that I can proudly say to John Lennon or Elvis Presley, "you may be a star, you may be a legend, but you don't have a blog!" Well, the main reason that triggered my fingers to start this shit is when I realized the fact that I, a normal human being, not known by the rest of the world other than my 559 friends (according to Facebook currently) would most probably leave this world someday without leaving any marks/contributions on the face of earth. So what happens to Nik Ahmad Munawwar Nik Din 200 years from now? It's as if I've never existed! So this, my blog, is a proof that on Tuesday, July 7th 2009 at precisely 8:58 PM Malaysian time, I am well alive and breathing and writing my first ever blog post.

Ok I'm off to Murni now. Gotta catch up with my good ol' budak koleqs...