Saturday, October 31, 2009


culling books

the other day as i usually do, i picked up a book at random but this time not from those nicely lined in book racks of my three thousand or so books in my personal library (and still expanding) but from the stacks of books under my bed which are waiting to be put in their proper place on book racks which i couldn't because they are now full and turned out this book is other colours ,a collection of 'essays and a story' by orhan pamuk.

i came to orhan pamuk rather late and i must thank one 'pessoa' who first made me aware of this writer several years back. i very rarely care for book recommendations from anybody until i 'met' pessoa in one book forum. we had a fight over something and i challenged him to name some of his favorite books and much to my delight he came up with a list of about fifty or so books about 40% of which were completely unknown to me -at that time. the reason why i asked him to name his favorite books is simply because i will know immediately if he's a good reader or not by the list of books he considers his favorite.this is the easiest way to find out if someone is an idiot. the fact that he used pessoa as his 'avatar' after fernando pessoa which at that time was also unfimilar to me indicated that he is a very well read man and a book addict.

and you can't find a more book obsessed person than orhan pamuk. i once read somewhere that he would feel literally sick if he is kept away from his reading and writing. for those of us who are unfortunately inflicted with the curse of inordinate love for books and have become book addicts, one of the chief worries is what to do with all the books we keep on collecting although knowing full well that we'll never ever going to read most of them in this lifetime. and it was a pleasant surprise to find one of the essays in orhan pamuk's other colours is "How i got rid of some of my books" and unlike my usual approach to reading -for pleasure- i approached this article as some of us would read all those 'book for dummies', namely to find solutions to our particular problem.

but in the end i get nothing of the kind out of it. the essay is what one would expect from orhan pamuk. a very interesting and meandering thoughts about favorite writers and his love of books. he would never write anything remotely pedestrian like all those boring DIY articles in book for dummies but he did mention that he managed in the end to dispose a laughable 250 books (out of twelve thousands in his library!) . and i find it very funny that those he considered unfit for his library are those books as he put it in the last sentence of the essay

This is how my Turkish literature shelves are quickly losing works by half-witted, mediocre, moderately successful, bald, male degenerate writers between the ages of fifty and seventy.

Saturday, October 24, 2009


i had a dream....

what a strange dream! it's quite atypical of my normal dreams of girls -who are not my wife- having all sort of shenanigans with me and what is worse is the dream was in english... a sure sign that i'm turning into one of my most hated creatures...the wog! oh what a dream! and it was not 'i had a dream' kind of that most famous black man on earth (and who recently slipped down to the second- after barack obama) who was shot dead for his idealistic, mine is a whole lot down to earth, mundane but disturbing to me none the less.

they say your dreams reflect your collective inner subconscious concerns and desires. and some say it merely depends on what you ate the night before, or because you don't wash your feet before you go to bed or some religious nuts would say because satan piss in your ears...

but let's see. what was the last food i ate last night?. Pineapple. doesn't seem to explain the dream. did i wash my feet before i go to sleep? my feet are always clean. i wear flip flop slippers in the house and i don't go walking barefoot anywhere and sometimes wash them before coming out of the i can consider that yes, effectively i washed my feet.

did satan piss in my ears? my wife always read passages of the Quran before she drops off beside me and although the Quran is not my bed time read i consider i was close enough to the holy book so i assume satan won't be hanging around near me. so, no satan urine in my ear.

and that remains the last thing. my subconscious desires and concerns. i'm a normal man. my normal aim in life is just like all of us... sex drug and rock and roll...or variations there of. the last thing i did before i went to sleep last night was to watch the late and great gore vidal on you tube . and read APOLLO magazine (Oct 2008) article on Prince Hans-Adams II of Liechstentein art collections which is considered to be one of the world's gtreatest private art collection. all these have absolutely nothing to do with the dream.

so there's one thing left that can explain it. it's the office work! like most of us poor salarymen, we bring our office worries to bed. but i always take a cavalier attitude towards office work. my motto is do your best but fuck them if they don't turn out the best. but the funny thing is i don't have any worry ith my office work. i could do them in my sleep!...hey that's proably the answer!

i dreamt of being tasked to chair a multi agency multinational meeting on a topic which i was absolutely unprepared for. we came to this office and led to a meeting room which had a BED in it. as some of the members arrived one or two tried the bed reclining or sitting on it. and all the participants in the meeting were WOMEN. some were quite beautiful and many were CHINESE. i was very flustered because i didn't know any of these women and i didn't know what the agenda was and no knowledge or experience on the topic at hand. and instead of documents and files i only brought a PILLOW to the meeting....

Thursday, October 15, 2009


look at the bright side of life

i drove to pd on saturday night , the last night of campaigning for the bagan pinang state by election . jalan pantai was chock full of people and there was a very carnival like atmosphere along the road especially near and around telok kemang area. you can't even enter telok kemang and the traffic was diverted away at the roudabout. not without unintended sense of humor - it was diverted out back to kl.... i stopped at one place which i mistook for a pasar malam but full of people selling PAS things ...t shirts, cds, dvds, even dikir barat cds...but with a difference... the songs were all PAS oriented campaign songs. very nice. i almost felt like i was in my home town kb. never thought to see this kind of thing in PD which on normal days is almost like some places in bali...almost...and i thought hey, the old bugger is gonna get a drubbing this time may be? ...but then i realized all this carnival was due to people from outside coming to campaign or give moral support to PAS . met many people from kelantan, trengganu etc. spoke to a few and even went to one of the PAS ceramahs nearby which was empty and i had a sinking feeling that all wasn't well...and the rest is history...the sly bastard won by a landslide.

so much for idealism. all the yellow black and brown voters went back to support the dimunitive bugger in droves. can't blame them. fuck idealism. you can't eat idealism. what have they got to lose? between a dour , inarticulate and almost retarded looking PAS candidate and a cheerful devillish bugger with bag loads of hindsight it's obvious who the people in pd will choose. it's a no brainer.

i'm feeling sick of my fellow malaysians again... i'm losing hope. i don't think we'll ever be going to see umno and bn uprooted. may be we deserve having these crooks as our masters. we are all not so angelic ourselves. we're fucked and so we deserved to have fucked up masters.

the great wonder is we can stand being made fool of and being kicked around for more than 50 years by these assholes and yet we are super critical and can not stand five months of teething problems when it comes to the more idealistic PR people. talk about twisted logic.

but we have to look at the bright side of life - to quote life of brian - again. may be this bagan pinang fiasco is just a special situation. a localised and temporary insanity. we move on.
may be we all should be more positive . may be it's instructive and we to take heed from this little story...

A young man was extolling the virtues of his beautiful fiancee. One of his closest friends exclaimed, "you can't be serious about marrying Sarah Jane! Why, she's fucked every man in syracuse."

The bridegroom-to be thought awhile and then muttered pensively, "Syracuse isn't such a big town."

- Giant book of Dirty Jokes.

Friday, October 09, 2009


laughing at truth.

Perhaps the mission of those who love mankind is to make people laugh at the truth, to make truth laugh, because the only truth lies in learning to free ourselves from insane passion for the truth.

- Umberto Eco

Hey i like that. i don't exactly know what it means but i like it. and perhaps that's the reason why i like books by people like kurt vonnegut and mark twain so much. hell i even like chris rock's stand up comedy. and all those fantastic coen brother' movies. they all have one thing in common. all these people make us laugh at the truth...whatever the hell truth means.

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