Misguided? No, Just Plain Evil.


Some nut-job declared outright that he is justified in condemning the country to the world at large – at every opportunity, in every forum. His twisted analogy is that if a father is raping his daughter, then the daughter has every right to stand in the middle of the street and shout it out to all and sundry.


Do you really think passers-by are interested in your predicament beyond their morbid taste for the sensational? Do you really think casual passers-by will be motivated to make things right for you beyond uttering a self-righteous “You poor thing!”

The father raping the daughter indeed! This is the same country that provides him with the opportunities so that he gets to enjoy an Audi, a luxury condo, private tertiary education for his children and host of other advantages that more than half of the world out there can only dream about.

If your father is raping you on a daily basis – and there are no proper channels for you to get redress – then life must be hell for you here. If that is really the case, grow a backbone and leave home!

No, I will not agree to disagree. This is my country he is dragging through the mud. And the last time I looked it is also still his.

Is he naïve? Is he misguided? My money says he is just plain evil – and arrogant enough not to recognise his blessings.

Five From My Bucket List


Here it is – from my Bucket List (in no specific order of priority):

1.  Have a suit made by a London bespoke tailor

I know my tailor Samuel Yeong does quite a decent job of suiting me up. In fact, I think he is every bit as good as any Savile Row tailor… right down to having undo-able cuff buttons for his jackets. But there’s something to be said about having the real deal – just for the experience. I’m thinking that a 2-piece, all-weather business suit made from 11-ounce fabric would do me nicely…

Each suit might need up to 3 fittings and 12 weeks to complete (or so they say). So, this will necessitate a long-ish stay in London (yaaay!). However, at around RM20,000 a pop, the suit will not leave me much by way of change for sightseeing. But that’s OK. I’ll just buy all-day tube passes and forget about renting an Aston Martin DB5 for the stay. Continue reading

The Bond Awards

The Greatest Bond – EVER! – Let’s start with the easiest. This one goes to Sir Sean Connery. Frankly, nobody does it better… Fans of Roger Moore might violently disagree. But hey! They should just stick to watching The Saint.

The Meanest Bond Award – Bond is British. But one guy took it a step further: Bond is now British as well as BRUTISH! This honour goes to Daniel Craig

The Luckiest Bond Award – This one goes to Timothy Dalton. Why? He got to play opposite the most beautiful Bond girl ever: Maryam d’Abo

The Unluckiest Bond Award – What can I say? George Lazenby wins this hands down. Why? Well, he actually went off and got himself married (albeit to Diana Rigg), didn’t he? And to top it all off, she got snuffed out by the bad guys.

The Best-Looking Bond – I’d say this would have to go to Pierce Brosnan. Then again, Bonds shouldn’t look pretty: they should just look like Sean Connery

The Should Have Stayed Home Award – How shall I put this? Roger Moore was sort of OK-ish as Simon Templer in the Saint, wasn’t he? He should have stayed there.

I Love My Stan Smiths

I recall buying my first pair of Stan Smiths. It cost a RM45 a pair back in 1977. This was an insane amount for a pair of shoes when, for example, a clerk at MAS at the time earned only RM175 a month. It was even more insane when you happen to be a 15-year old student with no income to speak of.

But buy them I did. I even tried bargaining with the lady. Since I had rather dainty feet (size 6, actually), I argued they should be cheaper because less material was used. I thought this was rather clever. Then the lady replied, “OK, I understand. But if you want your money’s worth, young man, may I suggest you get a size 11?”

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Coming Home

Dear Helene,

Sometimes coming home isn’t easy.

When you’ve been away for a bit too long, you no longer know what to expect. Fear creeps in. Doubt begins to gnaw. What was once a sanctuary – a place of safety – now seems like a treacherous network of dark, foreboding tunnels. One wrong turn, a careless miscalculation, a hesitant pause could all spell disaster.

This is how I feel coming back to ‘Tea and Scones’.

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Notes to Myself (And Whoever Else Is Interested) – 1

Just expanding on a few things I overheard recently – and not so recently

  • “What a stupid thing to do!”I just can’t help but admire people who try but then fail. Personally, I admire less people who sit back comfortably, do nothing but criticise, and then start criticising even more when things go wrong.
  • “Nice. But this photo has been edited, hasn’t it? Me? I’m interested in photography, not editing” – It never fails to amuse me how willing people can be when it comes to putting down others who do not subscribe to their way of thinking. I guess it’s difficult to recognize arrogance in its many guises.
  • “After all that I’ve done for him/her!” – This has to be the most cancerous and self-destructive thought known to man. The need for reciprocity is OK in business. However, in human relationships, it poisons the spirit and taints sincerity. Human relationships aren’t supposed to be transactional.

Sunset Cruise, Anyone?

The Sea Leveller walkaround boat

Being without a training gig for the past two months has given me plenty of time to twiddle my thumbs. And between twiddling my thumbs I have also managed to dream a little: a sweet indulgence that I have almost forgotten how to do. But after being here in Umbai for almost a year now, it’s all coming back.

For a couple of weeks now I have had a strange (but amusing) recurring vision. There is this gleaming white 30-footer walkaround boat (an Island Hopper Sea Leveller, actually) berthed at the far end of the Umbai jetty. Its 420 hp onboard diesel engine is purring on idle as it bobs gently to the rhythm of the waves. An old-timer, dressed in an unbuttoned Hawaiian shirt, khaki cargo pants and blue deck shoes climbs out of the cabin. Straightening his worn out captain’s hat, he lights up a Winston and beams me a smile to end all smiles.

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