Mind Blowing

Thoughts and other crap on people, life and maybe footie...
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Thursday, August 30, 2007

On the eve of Merdeka

As I sit here in the office on the eve of our nation's 50th anniversary, I'm feeling a bit nostalgic. A lot has been said and written about the state of this country. Some are good (from the mainstream media no less) and some are bad (bloggers lah apa lagi).

It's no coincidence that in the run-up to 31st August this year, a lot of issues and arguments were raised. Taking this as a positive sign, it shows the maturity of Malaysians today. This is a democratic country, always remember that but how far does the democratic hole goes; now that's the issue. But maturity has its limits. Even the great 'ol US of A draws its line on do's and don'ts. That's 200+ years of democracy for you. At 50, we can't even compare. But surely we're on our way there.

Malaysia is not a perfect country. We have bad drivers and smelly people on public transportations. We talk a lot. We spit a lot. We like to break the law. And oh yes, we always have issues.

But on the eve of our golden celebration surely I won't waste my time criticizing on these matters. I think a lot of others have done so already. And successfully getting people's attention too.

On the eve of the 50th anniversary of our independence, let me remind us of the joys of living in this great country of ours.

This great country of ours.

I always like it when Americans say that phrase. Sadly, I have never heard it coming out of a Malaysian. Maybe some people think there's nothing great about this country. That this is a mediocre country. The boleh-land country, where everything boleh is sebenarnya bullshit.

I admit surely this country, like many others, has its flaws. I know it's not exactly perfect. But it's still home. The tanah tumpahnya darahku.

Despite all the shortcomings, the one party domination, the politicians, the football team and the attitude of the rakyat, Malaysia will always be my home. The place that provided me warmth and safety from the moment I came out of the womb. It is where I grew up. The place that taught me I am as good as the Mat Salleh beside me. The place that lets me venture into the world and learn. That I am beyond the kampung that I am living in. That my mind is only as limited as I allow it to be. The place that lets me live peacefully along with my fellow Malaysians. The place that lets me be me.

On the eve of our country's 50th birthday, let us pray for a better Malaysia. The Malaysia that we are all proud of. The Malaysia that we've always dreamed of. The Malaysia we knew when we were children.

Selamat Hari Kebangsaan ke-50 to this great country of ours.

o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

The name's Bonds. Barry Bonds

And so Barry Bonds finally hits no. 756.

I'm not a big fan of baseball. Not a big fan of American sports, really. Even with David Beckham there. I love basketball though, but I can't recall who won an NBA ring this year.

But in America, they love their heroes. They hate some too. Because when Barry Bonds started bombing them over the ballpark earlier in the season, everyone knew something special was in the making. But he wasn't the sports icon like Mike. The man was said to be using steroids, something just recently banned in Major League Baseball would you believe it.

I kept watched on his home-run count whenever they updated it on either CNN or ESPN. Coverage wasn't that much, you would have to understand with all the football going on. It reminded me of the magical summer of '98 where as a Matric student bored on holiday, I followed closely the home-run battle between Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa. McGwire eventually came out tops only for Bonds to break his single-season home run record two years later.

Back then, SportsCenter was from the US edition where baseball and football (not that football! ruled the headlines. SportsCenter US is wayyy funkier and funnier than the Asian edition they have now, but of course they focus more on stats more than the game itself. RBIs? OT? PPG? You get used to it after a few shows.

Anyhow, I just thought that it was ironic that 9 years later, I would be watching baseball history again. The thing I love about baseball is the homers, because when they fly away into the night sky, it's a magical event. The whole stadium focuses on the ball, and the ball alone. And as it descends, have fun watching the fans scramble over it.

Other than that, it's just a boring game played over 9 innings (if you're lucky!). That could take a while, lemme tell you that. So congratulations to Barry for your historic achievement. The way I see it, if the substance wasn't banned before this, than the man has every right to use whatever he wants within the written rule. Steroids or not, 756 is a whole lotta home-runs.
And a few broken bats as well.

o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o