Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Stories I May Never Write

Long before I was a writer, I had ideas for stories. Some of these, haunt me to this day, like just now, as I lay my body on my bed, I couldn't stop thinking of all the cartoons I was going to do, when I was 19.

There was an idea for a cartoon, there is an idea, which I have kept with me for years, and I never got to do it. If I die, I guess at least the story will be here.

This is a cartoon, because it can only be a cartoon. It cannot be anything else.

It started off with an image of an old man, scarred, on a horse, on top of a hill, overlooking an ancient city. Ships approach from the horizon, bearing the Portuguese flag.

Flashback 50 years ago, and there was a huge commotion as people of an alternate reality island in the middle of the Straits of Malacca rush to the palace bringing news of the arrival of a huge army from the empire of Majapahit.

Also arriving, unnoticed by almost everyone, are two companions from their lengthy travels. The duo have arrived home after leaving for so long.

They follow the commotion to the palace, where the Prime Minister is tasked by the King to go and find out what the Majapahit want. He starts by enlisting conscripts to his makeshift army. The duo joins, as well as five other young people of their age. These will be the seven companions.

The army marches, 10,000-strong, as part of a gunboat diplomacy tactic, to face the approaching Majapahit army.

In the night, as they set camp, 90 per cent of their fighting fore deserts them, as this was a ploy by the corrupt ministers in the palace in cahoots with the invaders, to kill the Prime Minister and get rid of the King.

With only 1,000 men, facing 20,000 of Majapahit's best, the Prime Minister looks to be in trouble. However, the duo come up with plans of diversion and tactics gleaned from travelling to such places as China, Japan, Saudi Arabia, etc, plus the individual skills of the seven companions, they fought a winning battle the next day, managing to scatter the Majapahit formation and elephant armies enough to escape back to the palace and saving the Prime Minister's life.

The seven are awarded positions and titles, and after this, go their separate ways, following their own agendas in the political labyrinth that is the palace and the kingdom.

Each new arc would explore each character's past history and introduce another character/tale from the rich vein of folklore in this region. It is to create a universe where all the legends can interact, as well as explore the meanings of dreams and life's goals.

This universe is filled with elephant cavalries facing teams of were-tigers. Shamans can summon armies of imps and ghosts, while people who control flying machetes fight invincible men. All the stories you have ever heard, is true.

Throw in classic scientific discoveries and classic battles relived on that small island as the kingdom fends off ancient empires at the time. Strategies employed by Sun-Tzu and Muhammad face off against Tokugawa's backhanded politics and betrayals.

Imagine a 15-year-old boy jumping up and slicing a fanged giant in two with an over-compensating dull giant blade. One of the shady characters using the keris to pierce and inject poison in rapid machine-gun-like attacks.

Valor, loyalty, and ultimately, betrayal as the draws to its final, shocking conclusion.


It would have been great.

But it will never happen.

Oh well. Time to try and sleep again. And maybe dream of it.

Vagabond: Training

I work with a lot of young people nowadays and ever since my lecturing gigs since two years ago, I have been more conscious of the best ways to pass on some skills.

I was very, very lucky. I had the opportunity to learn from the greats of our profession. Renegades, rebels and reniuses.

I had learned, earlier on, that in Japan, the craftsmen, the artisans, they learn or acquire new skills by closely following masters at their craft. This applies to cooks, comics artists, blacksmiths, etc. These are things they do not teach you in class - any class.

And so, for a long time, I studied them. No one person is perfect, so you try as best you can to get their best techniques. Before that, though, you must appreciate their own skills. You cannot learn from people whose skills you do not know, or do not want.

Writing can't be taught, which is both true and false.

The second thing, which is a more important matter, is one of attitude. In Avatar, Neytiri's mother said, "It is hard to fill a cup that is already full." If you are convinced that you know everything already, there is no point of learning anymore. Go and write your Nobel Literary Prize winning novel and give the world the finger.

The best writers, change over time. Neil Gaiman's prose have changed since I first read him, 17 years ago. Grant Morrison's writing has also evolved. The Invisibles was a verbose treatise on existentialism and spirituality while We3 is a minimalist tale of simple family bonds and primal relationships. He achieved this shift in four short years.

Your skills must evolve, must change, or you die as a writer. Writing is war, my friend.

Of course, Alan Moore never changes, but he is the Eldritch Elder God of Writing. And He Shall Come in the Night from the East and You Shall Not Know Him.

You acquire new skills by the simple act of observation, and you will do this, in silent humility and openness. Not in awe, for masters also make mistakes and no skill is perfect, but in presence.

Steal the skills. Learn them. And grow.

What works for me these days is simply to read. I read, and I imagine what goes on in the writer's head as he writes what he wrote. There are matters of structure, allegory and flow. When I write, I try and imagine myself as the reader. Would I be even slightly interested in the article that I am writing?

If not, I prefer to be paid handsomely, as I am a handsome man.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Violence Has Started at Occupy Wall Street

For YEARS, I have said that there is no racism, or a war because of religion. I have always believed that at the end of the day, it is a question of how long the poor will allow the rich to rape them in the ass.

Today, I got these images concerning the Occupy Wall Street movement and the cops moving in to fuck them up. Is this Kent State all over again? Will Occupy Wall Street turn from a stupid hipster bullshit, into a bona fide Financial Liberties movement?

Time will tell. For now:

All I can say is:

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Dream

I don't really like KL. It's polluted and mean-spirited and much-much too overcrowded and expensive to live in.

I came here because of the job opportunities, in 1998.

Used to be, when I get depressed, I would walk throughout the city, admiring what's there. Nowadays, I don't walk the city anymore. A short walk can leave me coughing as I think of the smoke and dust in the air.

I have a dream of buying a condo by the beach at Cherating, Kuantan, with a private beach and a gym and not 30 minutes from my parents' place.

Prices are lower, and I know more people there. Growth and development has been good to provide all the necessities and wants of a modern life, while retaining the wide green spaces of the land.

Kuantan recently won an award as the third most liveable place in the WORLD, as determined by the UN.

All these things is why I have seen and met many white people on the beaches. Some of them wear the sarong and can speak Malay after only an eight-month stay.

For all you breeders, there is an international school there, somewhere. And one of Pahang's top high schools - SMART.

I think there are at least three colleges there and business opportunities include agriculture, port stuff (import-export) and factories (DRB-HICOM assembling Mercedes cars in Pekan and factories and refineries in nearby Muadzam Shah).

There are quarries, palm oil refineries and numerous plots of land primed for agriculture right there in Kuantan.

I believe that Kuantan is definitely an alternative place to do business other than KL. It still has huge stretches of land and opportunities to establish long-term industries and businesses.

The Iskandar Development Region in Johor is definitely a growing opportunity, and Penang says they are fucking developed and shit. Hell, even Selangor touted itself as the country's most developed state.

I think that there is a need to boost the East Coast and East Malaysia. There is huge potential in Sabah and Sarawak as well.

Fuck, man. Hey, Government! Yo! Go and pour 30 billion on the East Coast, yo! I wanna see my hometown grow, healthily.

Great Tools for Great Men

This, my friends and dear readers, is the Scotch Brite Heavy Duty Scrub Sponge. This is the greatest and best thing to scrub your pots, pans and plates, glasses, even the kitchen sink.

I have tried many brands, and first encountered this when I was staying at a friend's house. Didn't think much of it at the time, but when I moved to my own place, I must say this Heavy Duty Scrub Sponge is not to be trifled with.

It has a green scrub side and a yellow sponge layer. The green, I use to scrub my pots. Very resilient and very effective. High quality stuff, this. The other side, is fantastic for wiping and washing dishes and smooth surfaces.

The yellow sponge side is a bit strange for sponges. The way it is constructed and the materials used means that it does not trap any food and stay clean all the time with no rotting meat or rice after a few days.

The great thing about it is, while other sponges and scrubs get destroyed and grimy after a good scrubbing - some even become balls of sponge and greenish material - mine has survived more than three months of intense scrubbing. This is definitely the Ferrari of scrub sponges.

And this, also something I first encountered at my friend's place, is the Mr Muscle Kitchen Cleaner. It will clean EVERY FUCKING THING in the kitchen.

I have used it to clean counter-tops, stubborn stains on dishes (tumeric and curry on PLASTIC) as well as grime on one pot after rigorous frying of beef. The beef stain is like charred whatever, and after scrubbing for a while with the Scotch Brite, I sprayed it with the Mr Muscle Kitchen Cleaner and left it for a minute. When I went back, it came off easily! Fantastic stuff!

These two are fucking great! Just fucking fantastic.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Happy Feet 2 and Other Reviews

Entertaining, but the first one better. So many good and great things, but it doesn't gel.

Krill scenes brilliant, but seems like clips from other movies.

Mumble is not desperate enough. His kid Eric is irritating. If I hadn't watched the first movie, I would not have cared at all for any of the characters.

Now need to lie down and regenerate brain cells. Can't write shit after watching Breaking Dawn yesterday. Twilight sucks ass. As usual.

Meanwhile, on TV, Glee sucks balls. I don't care about the characters anymore and now, I don't even give a shit about the songs.

House is boring. Fringe is stupid. Thundercats 2011 sucks. Homeland sucks. True Blood sucks except for the fucking scenes.

Terra Nova is white noise. Ringer is bloody fucking stupid.

Downton Abbey is perhaps the only series worth watching now. After Lost and Boston Legal are gone, TV sucks a big black dick.

Futurama is good, but has ended for the season. South Park is okay. Robot Chicken is not done fast enough.

Oh well, there's always sleep.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Vagabond: The Journey Continues

Today, I came in at 9am, finished a market research thing, went to four and a half meetings, had lunch with a colleague, then stayed on till 12.30am finishing some stuff up.

I completed all tasks, and finally saw the schedule for the next few months. All I can do is quote Neil Gaiman: "The destination is often a surprise to the destined."

With my job and all, I can't take on an offer to travel the region I had, but I guess I will be travelling anyway.

I've been planning a tour of the country, to 'walk the earth' for some time now and I might get to do just that.

I don't know where I'll be tomorrow or the day after. Nobody knows what tomorrow holds. But I do have a schedule, a calendar, and there are multi-coloured tags on them.

For now, I'm glad to be home, near my bed with the full-latex mattress, and to be free.

Fuck all you who doubt me. Suck my dick while I'm pissin'.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

400 Per Cent

Somebody once told me that I was too fucking intense. I made some people cry, and when I found out, I asked, "What's wrong?"

The person said, "I'm too tired."

So I said, "Well, maybe you could grab a candy bar. Snickers always does the trick, though I do prefer the taste of Butterfingers. I think you may have low-blood sugar level."

I have a strong flavour. A strong presence, so I keep it locked down cause the world is made of cardboard.

However, this is arrogance. This is just me thinking I'm better than everyone else.

Truth be told, at my most obnoxious, I have pissed off so many people. I pissed off, at one time, a PM's Press secretary, who had a gun. He eyeballed me like shit cause I went to an event in cargo pants and a torn t-shirt.

I pissed of terrorists (PIS-M), I pissed off gay people, I pissed off upstanding bullshit hypocrites of society. I pissed off people who deserve to get pissed on, and I pissed off people who didn't deserve it.

In my second assignment ever, I pissed off Ian Wright, and he kicked my ass. Literally.

I pissed off Raja Petra when I called him out on his promise to die. I pissed off Anwar Ibrahim until he blocked me on Twitter. I was asking him about phantom voters on his own constituency.

I pissed off people so much, they called my former bosses. At least three times. For different things.

And you know what? I'm surprised I'm still alive. I'm still standing here saying fuck the free world.

My editors who trained me, they pissed off Prime Ministers, Sub-Prime Ministers, Ministers, gangsters - they received clear threats (I only received threats from pussies). One of my bosses, one night, tried to pick a fight with an entire police station.

What I'm trying to say is, fuck that shit. Fuck all this thin masks of civility. You want things done, you got to break some cardboard boxes. And burn them.

I once helped conceptualise and execute a TV show in three days. Three days. There were three of us, and we did it while giggling like schoolgirls. That show went on to be one of the best performing shows on that channel that year.

My team at Astro, we did 3800 hours of TV shows one year. That's THREE. THOUSAND. AND EIGHT HUNDRED. HOURS. Anyone from the team, whether you love me or hate me, stand up and be proud.

With a skeleton crew at The Malay Mail, because skeleton crews are all The Malay Mail ever had, we did the jobs of hundreds. Maybe thousands. In Hulu Selangor by election, one newspaper sent 11 photographers and 11 journalists. Another sent 11 journalists and photographers. The Malay Mail? We sent 2.

My team of 6 writers at The Malay Mail entertainment desk filled in the same number of pages as a team of 17. Previously, I was a member of the team at The Malay Mail who worked at least 12 hours a day and churned out stories for 16 pages a day, every single fucking day of the week, 365 days a year.

I went to every single assignment my editor told me to go to, no matter how stupid it seemed. Because no story is stupid. With proper research, writing and editing, any story can be great.

I did movies that won awards, and some of them, kids still come up to me and tell me how they enjoyed them, which is the highest praise.

One of my articles was laminated and hung at Bukit Bintang because I wrote a drag queen show review as if it was the Miss Malaysia pageant. Highest acclaim as a writer.

And you know what, I still remember what my first editor told me, as she handed me a copy of the first story I ever got published in the newspaper.

"You started out writing cover stories. Never go down from there."

From that day, I treated every single story and every single task as if it was a cover story. I don't care where it gets published. When you read it or watch it or experience it, BAM!

The only times - and there were many of these - that anything I worked on suffered, is when I stop to listen to other people. Fuck other people.

It doesn't matter what other people think because I AM THE 400 PER CENT. I can't keep my head down. I'll go out blazing, whichever way that may be. Cause that's how I fucking roll.

And one of these days, if you fucking pussies ever, EVER, get the balls to finally come and kill me, please do. Because I am the best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be. Fuck your mother.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The M Trilogy

Tonight, Hikayat Merong Mahawangsa grabbed the Best Film award, amongst a bunch of other gongs at the 24th Malaysian Film Festival. I think the movie won close to 10 or something. I wasn't counting.

This is the second year running that KRU movie projects won big. Last year, Magika won Best Film and MySpy won Best Comedy, amongst other accolades.

Meanwhile, earlier this month - or was it last month? - Magika won, beating Merong, at the Anugerah Skrin.

I played my part in these projects - I wrote the scripts - and I am very happy that the overall strength of the team, the team's work and the teamwork managed to carry the story and cover most of my own shortcomings as a newcomer in the industry.

When Norman KRU asked me to write MySpy - my first and still favourite movie - I thought, "Okay. This will be an adventure."

I did not know that it would be a few years of being nervous and scared to death on most nights. The wins in the past two years were just a good ending to the M trilogy of films - MySpy, Magika and Hikayat Merong Mahawangsa.

There are a couple more films yet to be released by KRU, and I hope to - in the future - get my own stories released.

I did not do these things to win awards (except the Academy Award, which remains an elusive dream) - and truth be told, have never won one personally - rather to see and experience what it would take to write movies. The fact that the films won numerous awards I think is just a bonus to the team. I am just happy to be there for the ride. Thanks to all who helped. Cast, crew and KRU. I'm happy for everyone.

Well, the highlight of the night is done. Time for me to finish some work and go to sleep. I sleep early these days, as my job requires me to come in the morning.

I am still buzzing and can now close this chapter of my life with a smile. The M trilogy is complete, and I believe the stories are done. Cheers!

UPDATE: Magika won seven awards last year. Hikayat Merong Mahawangsa won eight.

Friday, November 18, 2011

The Pulpit

I got to deliver a talk to young journalists today, and I managed to sneak in a sliver of of 'everything about me' shit.

I'll tell you this - I am not sure what kind of job or position you can classify me in these days, but I believe the skills I have learned in journalism will always be useful.

I told the kids, I wanted to be a journalist for two reasons:

1. I wanted to be a comic book writer. Long story.

2. I believe that journalism is the last of the romantic disciplines. Not romantic as in, "Let's jump into this icy water and die together, Jack" or, "I'm not jumping, Robert, so fuck you and your alternative lifestyle."

Romantic as in the ideals of romanticism. Because really, at its very core, journalism is about the quest for truth, and there is nothing more romantic or idealistic than that.

And I have spoken, yelled, taunted and cajoled journalists for some years, to fucking drop the content and go for user experience.

I have been doing it for so long, that I believe the world has moved on. People KNOW about the idea already and have embraced it. There are so many social media shit flying around that my ideas are no longer novel or revolutionary. In essence, I wanted to do a Huffington Post, but Huffington Post did it first, so I am stuck with my dick out.

I believe in cycles. The Hindus call it yugas. I think that hardcore content might be making a comeback and for the Internet to behave as one of its primal, basic functions - that of being a true medium.

Users have experienced the thing. So the next step is unfeeling it. Internet will be made seamless and a part of life, ubiquitous and invisible. I believe that is the direction we are heading, what with the next generation being more comfortable with structure and rules than my own generation.

Religion is making a comeback on the young in a big way. The heathens and atheists who defined my era will soon come face to face with evangelical young people.

Structure, form will be paramount in the next few decades, as younger people take control of the world. Chaos is nearing its end and order will come to replace it. It is a cycle that is as inevitable as the spin of the earth causing the transition between day and night.

It is up to these youngsters, in the future, to shape the world we live in. My thoughts right now are of how to retire gracefully, and to be forgotten, for mine was a path of destruction.

And bla bla bla.

I had a good, full day. I did many things - most of them I enjoyed. And I am merely capping it off with the one thing I enjoy the most - writing. And sleeping.

See you after the breach.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Drive Review

I got back at 10.30pm from watching The Drive - a new horror play at The Actors' Studio. I immediately went for an important meeting and soon after managed to catch the cast at supper.

Having managed to tell the sole actress in the play that I believe I saw her bits of her undergarments on stage as I was situated quite strategically smack in the middle of the rows, I went home around 12 midnight to finish some work stuff.

However, I must say that The Drive is an entertaining show. One of the more entertaining plays I have seen in recent years. This is saying a lot, for me, since I abhor horror movies - accompanying one of my good friends to watch Twilight as the extent of how much horror I can take. Since it is Twilight, I must say I am quite a brave soul.

ANyway, The Drive follows much of the tropes of horror. And by tropes, I am using a more polite word for cliche. Nothing wrong here. If the cast and crew were to hope for more audience participation, some of them might get punches in the face instead.

The story is about three friends on a drive to an old abandoned asylum. Horror hijinks ensue, as the story became a frame for other tales.

The acting was okay, with some good scenes and some less so. If anything, The Ride suffers from an uneven feel. However, this does not distract from the enjoyment as well as the comedy thrown in.

There is a certain issue on the setting of the play - whether it was local or in the States - but it is a minor detail. For most.

A message for people who like to talk during theatrical performances - don't. The cast cannot hear your warnings and in fact, if they do, might miss their cues.

I recommend The Drive for those who like horror. It is a bit off season as the Americans are celebrating Thanksgiving - a play around turkey and masturbation might be more topical - but it was all in good fun.

If anything, it is heartening to see genre stories on stage. Shakespeare is great, but seriously, fuck Shakespeare. And fuck expositioning to the audience. Nobody gives a shit you got fucked by your uncle 20 years ago. I mean, sorry to hear that, but walk it off or go to a group therapy thingy.

The Drive is a refreshing performance and story. It's not perfect, but it's enjoyable.

Side Note: I want to see a Namron play or movie. I believe Namron to be one of the most underrated and unappreciated writers or directors in Malaysia. The man has a wealth of talent, knowledge and experience. I'd pay 50 bucks to see his shows.

Side Note 2: I noticed that I did not put in driving or golfing puns into the drive. The absence of puns is intended.

Monday, November 14, 2011

V for Vagina

A lot of people say a lot of things about Malaysia. Especially Malaysians. Some people say we are heading for a more mature democracy.

However, I hardly find anything we do as mature. In fact, I find most people here as infantile as ever. Some are stuck in kindergarten, others in primary schools, and some, even more barbaric, in high school.

Oh, don't get me wrong. I am not saying right here that you are all stupid. I do call you stupid, but not here. I'm talking about maturity here in this article.

It is strange that a man who favours fart jokes and toilet humour would even deign to lecture on maturity, but here we are.

I find that we as a society - all of us - as being held back from maturity, which I will define as the ability to have two or more opposing thoughts in one's mind without going crazy.

I see the schemes being cooked up by people who consider themselves smart, and I do not even frown on their evil or the amount of bad karma it will produce. I am simply stunned at the sheer clunkiness - the unclean arrogance of it all.

Once you speak - once words leave your lips, do you expect that the people around you will never repeat it? Do you really believe that your motives are invisible? That no one will know? That you can get away with it? Your secret hate and thoughts.

Oh, humanity, you make me laugh. Sadly.

Politicians are stupid or behave in a stupid manner because they are merely aping what they see. They are popularity hounds, seeking as much airtime and facetime and celebrity as anyone else. Because if they get noticed, if they are liked, you will vote for them. Without even thinking what that means to your jobs, your health, money, your present and your future. Sometimes, also your past.

Politicians constantly do stupid things because they think you are stupid, and by golly, yes you are.

They say, people deserve the Government they get. And to me, I have long stopped differentiating between the BN and PR people as separate. They are a system designed to enslave us, and we are too stupid, too infantile to recognise it together, as a society.

As a member of my generation, I am duty-bound to point out the mistakes of our system. The flaws. The mistakes. The ugliness. That is our jobs.

And I believe that politicians are merely the symptoms of a cancer that will very soon consume us all. And that disease, is our lack of maturity. In everything.

It is a cold night tonight. Rain keeps falling down. Say goodbye to the static numbness of your TV sets, or the illegally downloaded porn on your computers. And say hello to the Voice of Fate.

Happy Birthday, Alam

Today is my old editor Zainal Alam Kadir's birthday. He hates to be reminded, he said, of the number that seems to be growing bigger each year.

I believe it's a cool thing. I can't wait to reach 40, because I was born an old man. When my contemporaries were busy partying in clubs, I was in a pub somewhere, reading the papers every night.

But this is not about me. Alam was my first real editor, and one of the three legendary journalists whom I look up to, and with the other two completes the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe trio.

I remember that the four plus years when we worked together at The Malay Mail at Balai Berita, we had around 2 and a half meetings in total. I could come in at 11am, and would go back sometimes, at 8 in the morning the next day.

I had two nervous breakdowns - both invisible and not at the office - and was hospitalised for stress-related illnesses four times. I didn't mind. I don't think any of us did, because Alam was - is - such a strong character, a great boss, and a fantastic teacher.

He would give you tasks and didn't care how you did it, as long as it got done. You want to come in at 5pm? Once a month? Sure. Where are the stories?

The reason why we produced so many stories - I was averaging three features a day, sometimes six, before one burnout - was because no story ever went to waste. We were doing some good work, and it showed. There was value in our work. And the person to determine the value was him, the editor.

I believe it is a credit to the man that as long as he was there, there was no chance for politics. There were no backstabbings or clunky, clumsy maneuverings simply because Alam held the biggest hammer and the only way you can kiss ass is by doing a lot of work. A LOT.

Each person I worked under have different management styles. Some are relaxed, while others are meticulous to the point of generating hatred. Alam's style is mixed. Sometimes, he simply tweaks a few things and your story is out. Other times, I have seen him tear through some people's work and it is not a pretty sight. Whatever it is, we knew that our stuff were in good hands.

I've worked with the man across many different platforms and media. I can safely say that he is the country's most effective creative man, the best that we have, bar none.

He can draw, write, sing, act, host, cook, produce (both albums and TV/movies) and anything else that comes to mind. His Mee Bandung Muar takes 12 hours of preparation - a testament to what kind of a person he is.

Alam intimidates people. Especially insecure ones, because there is no way they can look good when he's around. I do not even consider myself Alam's equal, though with my new age leanings, I recognise that everything and everyone is connected.

We've had our differences and I have worked for years to be out of his shadow - so great is his talent. Nowadays, I am still proud to call him my friend, and to have trained under him - one of, if not the best writers/editors/hosts/producers/singers in Malaysia.


Friday, November 11, 2011

Off the Fasttrack

I live in a fast world. Everything whizzes by so fast these days, and I am an old man.

Let me ask you a question - when was the iPad launched? Three years ago? Six years ago? Nope. It was last year. June of last year. And yet it feels like it's always been there.

Ideas that seemed revolutionary just a few months or weeks ago are now stale. Lame. Boring. This is why I liked journalism. Every day, it's a new thing, a new story.

I generate and chuck out ideas at an alarming speed. I think of them, fall in love with them, and then I throw them out.

However, while I follow the tempo, the rhythm for idea genesis, I am still a traditionalist when it comes to certain things. I believe that certain things should be meditated on, and for some craft to be allowed time.

Because being fast and pretending to act like you're fast are two extremely different things. If, at the end of the day, you consume the same amount of time to do things properly, why waste time and energy on acting?

Whenever I sit down in front of a keyboard, I turn off all external bullshit. People might be killing each other, bleeding themselves with blunt rulers or some shit, they can say and yell and sing all the fuck they want. I'll be in my world, and in it, time stops, all noise die down. There is absolutely nothing, except myself and my work.

Because, really, fuck everything else. That's all bullshit. All unnecessary, all for the ego. All lies and manipulation. The evils of the world stemming from deep-seated insecurities.

So, take your time. Relax. Take a deep breath, and do whatever. Cause no one and nothing is worth anything. We are all, to quote Tyler Durden, the same all-singing, all-dancing crap of the world.

Humans are like a virus.


One of the more disturbing porn I have seen in recent years was not really porn. I couldn't classify it as that. Not really.

I mean, it has all the necessary fucking. There's one in the beginning which is mostly just nudity, to entice and set things up for the rest of the story. Two fucks in the middle, and one - the pay-off - at the end.

However, the story constantly wanders off to tell the tale about the characters - an old Japanese farmer suffering from dementia who 'milks' his daughter-in-law every morning. He thinks she's a cow called 'Bessie'. The girl allowed him to do so just to go along with his dementia, and also because she, too, wants to fuck him. INCEST!

See, the girl's husband and the farmer's son had died and two of them live alone in a secluded farmhouse that is nearing financial ruin. Both are horny, and you can expect what the finale is a mile away.

What disturbed me were two things. One was that after one daughter of the farmer comes back from the city and gets fucked for cash by an old lover who raped her when she was a teen (sordid past! three-dimensional characters! wow!), we immediately cut from heavy, loud fucking, to a visual of the old man - the farmer - masturbating with a bottle of shampoo/body bath.

I was like, fuck! The juxtaposition of raunchy sex and old man masturbating was disturbing enough, but I disagree more with his choice of lubricant.

Anyway, things happen, characters have arcs, and we get a satisfying resolution to the story, even if there was no fucking (there is). The whole story was, in the end, a meditation on caregiving for the baby boomers, isolation and dementia.

What I can say is that this porn has more depth than most shit I see on TV nowadays, which is the second thing that disturbs me. There is care in the acting, the characterisation and each scene, each shot was lovingly done and created a timeless classic. If I were given enough funds someday to do a movie, I would readily employ these actors - porn stars - to act in my film.

They got it where most people don't. I ended up watching the movie again, and fast-forwarding the sex scenes - who wants to see old men fuck young girls anyway - and enjoying the story, the performance and eventual tragedy of the tale.

Pinku eiga - the period of 'pink cinema' in Japanese porn industry is truly a treasure trove of hidden gems and forgotten, discarded masterpieces.

Pantun Mencarut Tanpa Alasan

Sorong konek, tarik konek
Biji kelentit dalam perahu
Bapanya borek, anaknya rintik
Emaknya tak pernah mencukur bulu

Konek emas di dalam seluar
Gosok sebiji di atas puki
Pantat mak kau macam kelawar
Ada sayap, telinga dan gigi

Kalau puki, katakan puki
Tidaklah kami menggosok biji
Kalau berlaki, tunjukkan laki
Tidaklah kami menjilat si isteri

Kalau ada puki di ladang
Boleh kami menumpang pantat
Kalau ada biji yang panjang
Itu kelentit, atau ketuat?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Vagabond: Decoder Rings and Toy Swords

Earlier in life, influenced by tons of manga and anime, I decided to follow the philosophies of the samurai. I was young and stupid. Now, I am slightly older and still as dumb as I was. With one difference - I found out that the Code of Bushido, the Book of Five Rings as written by Miyamoto Musashi himself, was a lie.

There are allegedly historical records saying that the Samurai did not have a death before dishonor code. Far from it. There are accounts, written by the samurai themselves that tells of fort sieges.

It went something like this:

"We laid siege for two weeks, thinking this shit will be over in one. So we went home."

The samurais, with their armies, went home. Death before dishonor my ass. So I wandered the land, a vagabond, shocked at realising that this philosophy was a lie concocted simply because samurais wanted to continue getting an allowance from the Tokugawa government. See, after the Battle of Sekigahara and several other smaller battles, Tokugawa Ieyasu became shogun and united all of Japan. The feudal wars were mostly over and samurais - gods of war during more turbulent times - find themselves hardly relevant in peace times, but continue to receive money from the state. Just in case war breaks out again and Tokugawa needed some generalising.

So there I was, all that was taught me, ultimately, tragically and pathetically, a lie.

Did I lie down and allow myself to be raped by Imperial dogs? No! I decided that if generations of people can subscribe to a lie as a guiding philosophy, so shall I.

I decided to construct my own code, cobbled together from comic books. Tells of the same shit. Honour, loyalty, all that jazz.

Later on in life, I was like, fuck all this shit, and came up with my own code. I have no morals, just a few ethics. And right now, my code tells me I need to go to sleep and get ready for another day tomorrow.

There is no one who can guide me, except myself. There is no one who would listen, except myself. There can be only one truth, and I am the only one who can tell me what it is.

I am Lucifer! Called the Morningstar! And I shall carve my own kingdom with my own hands, and wear my crown upon a troubled brow. By this dick, I rule.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Good Cop, Bad Cop, Cop a Feel

I was called in the morning today, to see some people about something, and we had a nice chat. During the conversation, I was told that the easiest way to make money in Malaysia nowadays is to advise politicians on their PR strategy, with particular interest on their Internet presence and persona.

So, as the world's greatest Internet image consultant, I was going to display my gargantuan brain by listing out several basic tips on cultivating an effective political online persona.

Instead, I decided to just write about sex education in Malaysian schools.

They say that there is no sex education in school. I beg to differ. I was eight years old, I think, when my Islamic Studies teacher said, "You can't have sex with your wife if she's having her period."

And I was like, "What the fuck is period?"

For years after that, there has been an obsession about periods. Apparently, women in their periods can't fast, can't fuck, can't perform the Haj, have to find other ways to 'pleasure their husbands' and that fucking doggie style is prohibited because Jews fuck from behind. Which leads me to having images of Muslim clerics watching Jewish porn in their offices. Because how else can you know about Jewish sex habits, if not for Jewish porn?

There is no need for sex education in Malaysian schools because, after going through the system, I can safely say that sex is taught quite openly as part of religion. There is an obsession about periods, or bleeding pussies, pregnancies, and taking baths after you have either ejaculated or menstruated, before you can pray and fast and stuff.

Barbaric, you say? Well, what right have you - or anyone - to judge how people want to live their lives?

Look at the liberals - always asking people not to judge them. But they judge those who judge them all the time. How can you preach tolerance when you are intolerant of intolerance?

I asked these questions when I was in my 20s. I'm an old man now. These days, I just laugh at people. And wank.

Prometheus Unbound

It's 2.40am. Time for some MEGALOMANIA!


I'm the best there is, the best there was and the best there ever will be. The excellence of execution. The cerebral assassin. The king of kings.

Vocare Ad Regnum!

The stealer of wrestlers' hype. The bringer of rain! I am Spartacus, bitch! While you're just a wannabe snitch.

Fuck the haters. They be in the bathroom with their turkey basters, thinking about cellulite-ridden strippers. Talkin' like they be gangsters. Huh. Walk it off, you fucking masturbators!

Humens Must Fight for Freedome!

Freeeeedom! I'm not making sense, but fuck it. Fuck it!

This is like, what? The fifth blog post? Fuck it!

Magika won at Anugerah Skrin after its earlier victory at FFM. As part of the team that did it, I'm pretty chuffed.

I'd like to do more kids movies. Buttt, we'll see.

More stuff coming. But first, I just want to rest. It's been a long week. With a non-sexual happy ending.


I am pissed off!

For years, I was confused with the shows Webster, starring Emannuel Lewis, and Different Strokes, starring Gary Coleman.

WHat the fuck, man? TV got me confused between two midget black people.

Soapbox: PPSMI

Well, suddenly I am getting requests to write about the PPSMI issue. Since Magika won best film - again! - this time at Anugerah Skrin 2011, I guess I'll just comment on the issue.

My main concern is for the Government not to flip-flop on their decision on PPSMI. If you want Malaysian kids to study maths and science in English, then keep it that way. If you want them to study in BM, then keep it that way. FOREVER.

Any leader that flip-flops is a weak leader, Uncle Najib. Make a stand, and hold your ground. FOREVER.

Fuck being a populist. A populist is a dumbass who sways according to whoever last told him/her off. And you don't even have to be shouting and yelling in an angry voice to have a backbone. Just relax, clear your head, and stand your ground.

Because this shit is not scientific. Opponents to PPSMI cite shortage of textbooks. Well, call me! Give me a fat, juicy Government contract and I'll furnish every child of primary and secondary school age in Malaysia with books. Add enough money, and I'll do it double time.

If I'm no good, get someone else. Within 10 years, the shortage of textbooks can be solved.

I have always believed that learning other languages is key to opening your minds up to stuff and shit. I believe that every one in Malaysia, regardless of age, should take up an extra language, constantly, on top of what they already know.

I'm going to polish up on my Japanese soon. I don't give a shit.

Also, I believe that people who blame everything on education as fucktards. Education is NOT the magic bullet.

I come from a swamp. Blah blah blah. What I saw was poverty all around me. No matter what language you teach them kids, it won't make a difference if other shit are blasting their influence on them from all sides, 24 hours a day.

And while they're at it, some don't have enough nutritious food to even keep their brains alive.

Food, shelter, clothes. Those three first. THEN we talk education.

The task of improving our citizens will not be solved with a temporary Government edict. It will take generations, and the first step is admitting that yes, Malaysians are not that rich.

In KL, you can splurge on a lot of shit. You can spend RM25 on a pint of Hoegaarden. You can buy RM100 single-plate meals. Or pay RM1,000 per head to eat chrysanthemum tempura. What the fuck are the rural folks eating?

I believe that if we disregard the welfare of the poor, the really poor kids will come and rob us in 10 years. They will rape us, kill us and take all our shit. They will not discriminate between the rich (Francis Yeoh) and the barely-made-it (me). Because they would have nothing left to lose.

So PPSMI is an issue, yes, but I believe it is hardly the gravest issue. Neither is sexual equality the gravest issue this country is facing. I believe that we have to tackle poverty FIRST. And get food to these people. Food, for 10 years, vocational training for the next 20, and THEN education 30 years down the line. Or everything at the same time.

A sustained effort for the next 50 years MIGHT make a DENT. Anything else? Is bullshit.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Soapbox: Two Straight Guys Talk About Malaysian Homer-Sexuality

So after a long but fun day, I went to have Thai food with one of my close friends.

We're both straight, but somehow the conversation turned to Seksualiti Merdeka - Malaysia's premier gender and sexuality equality rights movement.

Friend: So, this Seksualiti Merdeka thing.

Me: Yeah?

F: What do they want?

Me: Gender equality, I think.

F: You mean, feminism?

Me: No, I mean, well, maybe feminism too, but more like sexual equality.

F: Like what?

Me: I dunno, dude, I'm not gay. I am perhaps reflective of straight ignorance of LGBT struggle.

F: There's a struggle?

Me: I think so.

F: But you started STRET - Straights Towards real Equality and Things - in support of gay rights. What do these gays want?

Me: I'm not really sure, but I support them all the same. Why are you so interested? Are you gay?

F: No, but our friend M*** asked me to ask you.

Me: Why? Do you guys think I'm gay?

F: No, but, you know, you have more gay friends than I do. Are they oppressed?

Me: I... think so. I believe that their plight is more implied. More psychological, more administrative, with some outbursts of physical stuff.

F: Like what? Were they beaten up?

Me: I believe that the chances that some were is very high. Though since there has been no credible research that has been made public, that I know of, I really can't say.

F: I never read about them in the papers.

Me: Look, you're an atheist. Do you feel oppressed? From our majority God-fearing community?

F: Sometimes.

Me: Okay, now I believe that it is not fair for us to assume what the LGBTQWERTY whatever community is up against, since we are not them.

F: Well, they did get Ambiga... which seems fishy.

Me: Why? That they turned to someone who recently made a successful commotion?

F: But why would they want a commotion? Why do they want attention?

Me: I believe that their stories are not getting enough exposure. If I was in their shoes, I'd get everyone, PLUS Ambiga.

F: What's the story?

Me: Maybe that's what they're trying to tell us.

F: You don't think they are just trying to force people to accept them?

Me: I don't know, dude.

F: Lots of things you don't know.

Me: To be fair, I haven't even heard fully what Seksualiti Merdeka - a subset of the LGBT community - is really complaining about. And maybe that IS their point - to put across their point. To people like us. Who don't know what they want.

F: I don't give a shit whether they're gay or not. They get the same treatment from me as everyone else.

Me: I'm sure.

F: What do you think they want? Gay marriage?

Me: Maybe later? I think it's just awareness and creating a support system, not turning straight people into gays.

F: Yeah, that turning people gay thing is bullshit.

I left for home feeling uncomfortable. I believe that everyone should be allowed to express whatever they want, IF THEY WANT TO. Seksualiti Merdeka does not represent the entire gay community, IMHO. They represent a people, trying to express their freedom of speech. Above all else, I believe in freedom.

I am increasingly asked by people concerning Seksualiti Merdeka. I am not sure why. I must state that I am STRAIGHT. Yes, I do watch musicals and am in touch with my emotions, and I am straight.

I do not agree with some of the thinking behind some people, who believe that fighting oppression and discrimination will make it go away. It simply, IMHO, makes it stronger and for the lines dividing us easier to see.

However, if that is the message that any group wants to convey, then I believe we either should help, or get out the way.

The problem with freedom of speech is that you must also allow and/or protect the kind of speech you don't agree with.

I believe that there are more things that make us similar, that binds us together - in a non-liberal way - than things that keep us apart. I believe that everyone and everything is connected. That winning and losing are two sides of the same coin.

And that ultimately, if you are aware and awakened, you will understand that the weapon to end all wars and hatred is not ego or emotion, but acceptance of the world and the nature of the people that God has created.

I hate liars. I hate racists. I hate insecure people. I hate idiots. And if I am strong enough, if I am wise enough, I will find myself in them and open my hearts to them.

But seriously? Fuck Apple zealots.


I got home from dinner and called my mother. She gleefully told me that I had lost in Anugerah Skrin 2011 for both Magika and Hikayat Merong Mahawangsa in the script category.

I was smiling all the way, though, as really, being nominated is enough. I wasn't even aware of the nominations till today, when KRU called me up, and another team, which did the documentary on Yuen Yuet Leng also told me that the docu was up for an award at Skrin.

Even though the movies lost, the documentary won. Muahahahaha! Yeahoo!

This is a step up from FFM. My name was not nominated at all at FFM, but at least my name is there for ASK 2011.

And my team won for the documentary. Muahahaha!

Yeah! I mean, that's what my producer told me just now.

Yuen Yuet Leng is one of Melaysia's living legends. He fought the Communists, became Perak Chief of Police and Sarawak Police Commissioner. I had fun interviewing him. He's like a Malaysian James Bond.

Anyway, I'll savour the moment of being nominated for a while. It's been a great day. Yeah!

I, Amazo

I'm trying to sleep early because I want to wake up early tomorrow, but I keep waking up.

This time, things just fucking clicked, and I just figured out some shit. I am such a fucking genius! No wonder people are constantly threatened and scared of me.

I amaze myself again. Hahaha! This is the answer to everything! MYreka! I look at myself in the mirror, and discovered that not only am I ruggedly handsome, I am also a fucking genius!

I should pose in the middle of the night, on a building, dressed as a bat.

Someone like me only exists every billion years or so. I pity the lesser primates who call themselves humans.

Dang, I am so fucking smart.


I just woke up from a two-hour nap. It was a restless sleep, but as soon as I woke up from a dream involving weird Japanese TV shows, I felt good and calm again.

Lots of things are happening, and people close to me are going through some tough times. In fact, almost all of them are. My first instinct is of course to help, but I remember now that I am no longer a superhero.

I can't save anyone and the best thing I can do is take care of myself and make sure no one has to worry about me.

There are lots of distraction and I haven't been writing much. All the bullshit will soon pass and I'll be at the keyboards again. I'll be reading again and writing again.

I'll be telling stories again, because at the end of it all, that is all I can do.

Hey, it can't rain all the time.

Now, back to weird Japanese shows.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Omnia Mutantur, Nihil Inherit


I'm trying to reschedule my sleeping, so I'm going to bed soon. There's nothing to watch on TV anyway, so fuck you guys!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Rerun: Doing Content for a Brave New World

Despite my cheering of the Internet, I'm basically a traditionalist. I'm old school when it comes to writing.

The reason being I was influenced at an early age by classic articles in Reader's Digest. And I believe that since everything goes in cycles, the style would be fresh again very soon, when the current generation comes into power.

They would never have been exposed - most of them anyway - to the style of yesteryear. And after all that focus on the youth, old school will be cool again. If old people live long enough, they will be cool again.

The old school style I like so much can be explained as a hat-wearing, suit-donning 1950s guy who knows what a shoehorn is.

Fuck, man, I'm very bad at explaining styles. Okay, it's like when that boyband sang Uptown Girl, or when Michael Buble did covers of classics. Josh Groban singing Somewhere over the Rainbows for Oprah's farewell.

See, a style is a mentality, a personality. You embody that personality, or you showcase a side of you - becoming a simplified version of yourself - and you speak as that character.

Yeah, yeah, you can say I'm wanking but it's true, it's true. I've met really raucous and lewd people whose writing style is very dignified. All writers I ever knew, are different from their styles. It's an act, a performance. Writers are actors, telling a story.

Ah, fuck it. Time to shut up and write. Fuck off!


More than a year ago, Ralph Simon - the 'father of ringtones' and Lady Gaga's Internet advisor (please note that Lady Gaga is NUMBER ONE on Twitter and maybe Facebook) - finally articulated RIGHT HERE IN MALAYSIA what I believe is the single most important point concerning traditional, and new media.

"Ask old media - Fox, Universal Pictures, Sony Music, Rupert Murdoch - what is their product, and they would immediately say, 'content'," said the small man at PICC. "Ask Facebook and Google, what their product is, and they would tell you it's 'users'."

Which makes a damn lot of sense. If you ask Mark Zuckerberg, 'what is Facebook's primary selling point'? He's not going to answer, "Uhhh... we have location tagging and big blue buttons." No. He's going to say, "Facebook has over 750 million users, and growing."

Or something like that.

Traditional media is dying out and as part of the generation that helped destroy it, I feel damn fucking proud.

Actually, it's not destroyed. I believe I will die first before Ted Turner. Because Ted Turner is Captain Planet.

You can't fight the Internet on content. Nosirree. I don't believe that you can 'fight'. You can only add to the ocean of content. That's all.

News entities that want to fight the Internet will one day die like a fucking beached whale. Once all the newspaper readers die off in 20-50 years, that's it. You're dead.

And people who try to sell content online as what traditional media has done for the past couple of hundred years are merely doing what that old dude was doing. Roll the boulder up the hill, and watch it slide down again. Roll it up, slide down again.

On the Internet, you don't sell content. You sell user experience to users, and then you sell your numbers to advertisers.

For years, YEARS, I have been telling newspaper people that the ONLY way to make newspapers relevant again is to hand over the control of the paper to the people.

Have them vote on what comes out on the front page. Is it Najib? Is it Rosmah's imaginary diamond ring? Is it Anwar (allegedly) fucking someone in the ass again? Is it a pothole in Balakong? Everybody decides.

Okay, fine, maybe not the front page, but the inner pages.

Get people involved in news creation. Create a sense of ownership for newspapers, by the people. It's their fucking paper. The user experience generated by that would be so fucking tremendous and awesome, that I guaran-damn-tee that readership will increase by SIX BILLION readers.

Newspaper companies would have to cut down all the forests in the world, and everyone would die for lack of oxygen in TWO WEEKS. TWO WEEKS!

You know why I thought of this? Cause:

1. Nobody wants to read anything except their own writing and people who agree with them. Fuck facts. Fuck information. You tell them something they don't like, and they hate you for it. Even if it is true. Like, "The Opposition are just dumb racist fucks who want to embezzle even MORE money than the present Government."

2. News agencies waste a lot of time and resources sending reporters to cover areas where nothing happens. It's like, "Go cover Sepang and see if there's any landslide in two weeks." "Duhhhhh..." "Fuck you! Go cover 'em now!"

Of course, nothing happens and everything is a giant waste of time. And resources.

Instead, why don't we get people to suggest and vote for shit they want covered.

"Say, my daughter is graduating ballet next week. Can you cover that shit?"

"Fuck you, old man! There's a pothole behind my house and I want it covered right now."

Then, we go for a vote where ballet recital gets 1 vote, pothole gets 1 vote and Najib's Budget gets 200 billion votes. Fuck you, ballet recital.

During the days when we were all fighting against alleged control of the media, we all criticised how only a handful determines what comes out in newspapers and on TV. Well, my model breaks the game.

I've been yelling this on my blog since 2003. I've spoken to Government-linked and opposition-linked news outlets. ALL of them I believe - and this is only my own personal opinion - are afraid of relinquishing control.

Bros, Sistas, you never had any goddamn control since 1984? 1983? When the public Internet was born. You lost the grips fully when was all we had to share news and shit. You lost the battle on IRC. You got KOed for the billionth time, with FB and Twitter.

There is no control. There never was.

So just learn to let go.

Nowadays, I hear even the self-proclaimed information revolutionaries run their mouths with their silly little marketing slogans. They know something's coming, but they don't know jack shit what.

For us content people? Well, there's always a need for writers. For journalists. ESPECIALLY when everyone is a journalist. Look at Tyra Banks and her America's Next Top Model. Opening up the industry of modelling, telling people HOW to model properly did not destroy modelling, but simply increased appreciation for the discipline.

Sharing their recipes did not bankrupt Nigella Lawson and Jamie Oliver. Hell, they're worth more now than they ever were. Cause you can know the secrets, you can have all the tools, but nobody bakes Beef Wellington like Gordon Ramsay. Nobody can take pictures like Ansel Adams.

Writers and journalists who are afraid to share the techniques and tools of their craft are one-trick ponies and frauds afraid of being exposed. If you're really that damn good, you would share your knowledge.

I have shared what little I know of screenwriting with anyone who showed an interest. You know how many people actually wrote a script based on my advice? ZERO. I guess some people merely love the idea, and wanted to know about the process. They didn't really want to write.

I believe that opening up journalism and writing fully will elevate it into an art-form. Finally. Because it is an art-form.

And as an artist, a fucking rock star, I should be paid by the billions.

So good night, good luck, and fuck you.