Sunday, September 30, 2018

Oh my Engrishhh!

This video clip of the then Deputy Prime Minister speaking at the 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, USA is making its rounds again.

Ahmad Zahid Hamidi struggles to speak Engrishhh… I mean, English.

As I listened, I cringed. I felt like his tongue was going to launch out of his mouth at any moment and he is going to spit at me voluminously. 

If you know your English is poor – make a serious effort to work on it. Please, please don’t embarrass yourself. Besides, it is really painful to listen to.

Snippets of the said speech delivered on September 24, 2016:


This is just a 1:06 minute clip and yet I was at the edge of my seat. I was filled with unimaginable dread! I don't know about him but I was veritably mortified!

UMNO Still Talk Cock












UMNO are always well-known for talking cock! 

The UMNO General Assembly this year is no different. 

Yesterday, UMNO Youth made the call for scandal-tainted party leaders to honourably step down. 

Their chief Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki (left) asserted: “Do not treat the party as a shield of one’s evil. Do not drag the party down with one’s personal wrongdoing”. 

UMNO leaders and members, he said, could no longer keep their eyes, ears and mouth shut over any wrongdoing by their party colleagues. 

I know UMNO party members heard him but I’m not sure if they had actually listened and understood and agreed with what he said. 

After all, Najib Razak, the biggest crook of all was there and I’m sure he will not be resigning any time soon. 

Neither those tainted with corruption would also resign. The likes of Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim, Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz and many others felt no guilt nor shame. 

In fact, Najib (right) was given a warm welcome when he made his grand entrance. Chants of "Hidup Najib" (Long live Najib) were heard as he walked into the Merdeka Hall of PWTC, the venue of the UMNO General Assembly. 

UMNO are already discredited. UMNO are diseased. UMNO will waste away and succumb. 

In the meantime, the UMNO General Assembly (September 28-30, 2018) will predictably dish out endless empty rhetoric. They remain in denial. They prefer to be the three wise monkeys. 

So, leave them be to talk cock! Besides, UMNO are no longer in power – how else to occupy their time?

Yesterday, Scott Sinclair scored the only goal (77) of the Scottish Premiership game to give Celtic a 1-0 win over Aberdeen.













And round two of Chelsea versus Liverpool – this time, it was the EPL. We almost saw defeat because of an Eden Hazard goal (25) – but saved in the nick of time by super sub Daniel Sturridge’s long-range strike (89). 

The fact remains that poor finishing cost us this match. The three points should be ours. 

Regrettably, we’re not converting enough of the chances we’re creating. 

In case, there are any non-Red fans who consider that the Sturridge goal was due to luck  that's not it. It's all down to conviction, determination and desire. And we never gave up.

Baby Shark

I’m sure you have heard of the toddler tune that has taken the world by storm – ‘Baby Shark’. 

It is a very massive hit song, just like the other Korean hit song ‘Gangnam Style’ by rapper, Psy. 

But Baby Shark is something else  it's silly but fun! The delightful ditty is aimed squarely at the under-3 set – and I dare say that Baby Shark, along with its accompanying animated video, is one of the most popular cultural artefacts of our time! 

In its various official versions on YouTube and other platforms (including Amazon, iQiyi, and Youk), Baby Shark has been watched 3.3 billion times, according to its creators, the Korean children’s video outfit Pinkfong – and that’s not including the hundreds of viral dance tributes hashtagged #BabySharkChallenge. 

Of course, the most popular version of the song on YouTube, featuring two small Korean children demonstrating the "Baby Shark Dance,” which has 1.76 billion views (as at 09:33 AM today) alone:



If you already didn’t know, with its catchy tune and cute graphics, Baby Shark’s influence has expanded beyond being just an ordinary children’s song. Like it or not, it is guilty of driving even adults to impressive distraction. 

In fact, it is so invasive that even at the Toastmasters’ D51 Annual Conference 2018 this April, Baby Shark appeared during Welcome Night! 

Undeniably, Baby Shark is indeed, a global phenomenon. 

Check out the adult version – thanks to James Corden (‘The Late Late Show with James Corden’) who has his guests, Sophie Turner (playing the role of Mommy Shark), and Josh Groban (taking on the role of Daddy Shark), for the definitive performance of what else, Baby Shark:
 

Even Ellen DeGeneres couldn’t resist Baby Shark – and so, she releases her own Baby Shark Video for ‘The Ellen Show’:


What can I say except that Baby Shark is simply contagious!

Saturday, September 29, 2018

The PD Seven













The Port Dickson by-election candidates. Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

The Port Dickson by-election is becoming a lively spectacle, complete with a motley gaggle of slick politicians and wannabe politicians. 

Seven candidates have stepped forward and offered themselves to serve the parliamentary constituency. Only one will get that opportunity on October 13, 2018. 

One prime-minister-in-waiting [Anwar Ibrahim), a former Negeri Sembilan menteri besar [Isa Samad], a military veteran [Lt Col (Rtd) Mohd Nazari Mokhtar], the man responsible for Anwar’s jail time for alleged sodomy [Saiful Bukhari Azlan], a social media personality, better known by his Twitter handle @tapaimalaya [Stevie Chan Keng Leong], a former Inti University lecturer and the only woman in the line-up [Lau Seck Yan] and a trainer and consultant [Kan Chee Yuen] make up the PD Seven. 

Except for Anwar (for Pakatan Harapan) and Mohd Nazari (for PAS), the other candidates are contesting as independents.  

Without a doubt, Anwar is a shoo-in. But I'm praying for a miracle.

I say "kasi chance” (Give a chance in English) to Stevie Chan.

















I am really hoping PD voters will pick this independent candidate!

I was at the Siemens office in CP Tower, Seksyen 16, Jalan Damansara in Petaling Jaya, Selangor this afternoon – where I participated in the D102 Area B1’s Speech Evaluation contest as a test speaker. 

My second time, in fact – and my speech, a CC #2 was titled “A Pipe Dream”. 

Two Toastmasters clubs, Phoenix and Standard Chartered GBS each contributed two contestants to evaluate my speech. 

Friday, September 28, 2018

Port Dickson Hurt

The Port Dickson by-election is taking an intriguing turn. 

An individual has applied for a judicial review to challenge the decision by the incumbent MP to vacate his seat and trigger a by-election. 

Yesterday, fifty-six-year-old Rosmadi Mohd Kassim, who is a registered voter in Port Dickson, filed the ex-parte petition through law firm Messrs Raja Riza & Associates at the Kuala Lumpur High Court. 

In his application, Rosmadi asked leave of the High Court to declare that Danyal Balagopal Abdullah’s (left) resignation as MP was invalid, null and void. 

He also requested leave for a certiorari to quash the EC’s notice dated September 20 to hold the by-election. 

In other words, he is seeking a declaration that the EC’s decision to declare the seat vacant is wrong by law, and sought an injunction to stop the EC from holding the by-election on October 13. 

He also sought costs and other reliefs deemed fit by the court. 

Rosmadi had stated in his application that he lodged a police report on September 24 on Danyal’s resignation. He said he put in the application based on the grounds that the first respondent had violated his oath of office as an elected MP. 

He claimed that Danyal’s reasons to quit the Port Dickson seat showed that he had acted only in the self-interest of PKR by-election candidate Anwar Ibrahim (left), rather than defend the interests of Port Dickson voters and Malaysians. 

He said Danyal’s resignation was clearly against the wishes of the people of Port Dickson who had voted for him in GE14. 

The hearing for leave has been fixed on October 02, 2018. 

Tomorrow is nomination day – let’s see who else will be throwing the hat in the ring! 

MALAYSIANS MUST REJECT ANWAR IBRAHIM IN PORT DICKSON. 

We cannot permit Anwar to win – otherwise, we are betraying Malaysian voters' trust as well as repudiating "reformasi"!

Just for the record, many Malaysians including me support Pakatan Harapan – but the Port Dickson gambit is very wrong! 

Anwar of all people, should know better! 

Like Kermit, I am hurt!

Malacca's Lyia Meta

Malacca-born blues-rock singer-songwriter Lyia Meta (right) took home the World Artist of the Year 2018 award at the Josie Music Awards in Tennessee, USA on September 08, 2018. 

The Josie Music Awards is the largest award show that celebrates independent artists from all genres across the globe. And talented Meta was the only Malaysian artist among some 13,000 hopeful entries. 

Her songs are about women and the ruptures they go through in life. Please do give a listen to these self-penned tunes and be wowed by her big voice:



“For me to win an award was surreal because I know the calibre of musicianship there and it felt so affirming on a personal level”, she told Malay Mail

In a 2015 interview with the same paper, Meta said of the challenges that she faced as an independent artist was getting her music played on Malaysian radio stations, despite enjoying airplay abroad. 

That’s not unusual. Or strange. We just don’t seem to take pride in our own local talents. 

At least, I blogged about Shila Amzah on September 11 and today, it’s Lyia Meta’s turn.





















































On Thursday, I was again at the EcoWorld Toastmasters meeting @ BBCC in Kuala Lumpur. 

A different venue with a mostly different set of participants. And this time around, I was just an observer. 

A good meeting with four Table Topics speakers and three project speakers.

Thursday, September 27, 2018

The American Braggart

On Tuesday, delegates attending the United Nations General Assembly had a good laugh – pretty rare for a forum that normally prides itself for its serious speeches that are rich in good intentions and flushed with political rhetoric. 

This happened when the US President (right) delivered his speech that was swollen with swaggering self-love. 

Speaking in triumphal terms, Donald Trump approached his address as an annual report to the world on his awesome achievements to “Make America Great Again”. He crowed that in “less than two years, my administration has accomplished more than almost any administration in the history of our country”! 

The reactions he received were priceless. 

His audience began to snicker and snigger and a few even broke into outright laughter. 

Nope, they didn’t care to show that they were impressed by him nor did they bothered to applaud him. 

Trump appeared briefly flustered before joking that it was not the response he expected but “that's all right”. 

The assembled crowd’s couldn’t-care-less attitude only reinforced Trump's isolation among allies and foes alike, as his ultra-nationalistic policies have created yawning fissures with erstwhile partners and cast serious doubt in not a few circles about the steadfast dependability of America’s commitments around the world. 

I think it was a really lame speech – but to be honest, he needed to feel good about himself. Let him “syiok sendiri lah”! 

If you know about his present travails, you might just sympathize with him – even if we dare say his political scrapes are all of his own making. 

And even when he spoke, his troubles at home continue to haunt him! 

On Wednesday, in the Scottish League Cup quarter-final match between Celtic and St Johnstone, the former won 1-0. Leigh Griffiths scored in the eighty-third minute. 

On the same day too, Liverpool met Chelsea in a League Cup third round clash.

The latter doggedly came from behind to end the former’s perfect start to the season – and dashing their hopes of winning the annual knockout men’s domestic football competition, also known as the Carabao Cup. 

The Blues were sharp yesterday and they deservedly beat the Reds 2-1. Daniel Sturridge scored for us. 

I'm not going to hide my feelings. I was unhappy. And I bet Jurgen Klopp (left) was too!

We must avenge this defeat when the two sides meet again in the EPL on Saturday. We must expect that!

Crime in South Africa

I have ranted about crime in Malaysia in my blog. 

But I must count my blessings that it has not reached the lofty levels that South Africans are said to encounter, experience and endure. 

Already the African nation has attained an unenviable notoriety for its crime sprees – so much so that its police minister Bheki Cele has described the maligned country as a place that "borders on a war zone" (BBC News, September 18, 2018). 

Crime statistics released by the SA government showed there were more than 20,000 murders in 2017, representing a 7% increase over the previous year. In fact, he cited that on a daily basis, there were 57 murders! 

According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime's most recent data, South Africa is cursed with the fifth highest murder rate in the world in 2015. 














It has become a daily part of this country’s daily diet, waking up to the news of yet another crime, yet another victim and a justice system whose wheels many feel turn far too slowly. 

It’s not just murders. South Africa has also one of the highest incidences of rape in the world. 

The police recorded 40,035 rapes in the 12 months leading to March 31, an average of 110 each day, the fact-checking organisation Africa Check says. 

Yesterday, I read that two rape cases are presently making headlines in South Africa! 

One was the alleged rape of a seven-year-old girl in a family-friendly restaurant in the capital, Pretoria on Saturday. 

Police reported that a 20-year-old man allegedly followed the victim into the women's restroom before snatching her and raping her in the men's section. 

The suspect was promptly arrested at the scene and charged with rape and possession of drugs. He has been remanded in custody and has not yet been asked to plead. 

The other was on Tuesday, when a man posing as a doctor allegedly raped a 17-year-old girl at a hospital in Eastern Cape province hours after she had given birth. 

According to the police, the victim had complained of heavy bleeding and he assured her that he would check up on her. He instructed her to undress and then he raped her. 

South Africa is where its citizens seem to be under siege – and being forced to navigate the threat of serious crime daily. 

A frightening prospect really – and in a land where murders and rapes are everyday occurences, I reckon even summoning a superhero to fight crime may not be as effective as having a team of superheroes on full-time duty. 

The lawlessness can be immensely challenging  and so, I would suggest we summon the Avengers or the Justice League so the people there can stay safe!

Desperate times call for desperate measures.



















Last evening, I was at the EcoWorld Head Office in Setia Avenue in Seksyen U13, Shah Alam, Selangor – where I was invited to give a 15-minute talk on “Understand How Toastmasters Benefit You in the Workplace” as well as assume two meeting roles – as General Evaluator and Speech Evaluator – at the EcoWorld Toastmasters meeting. 

I always feel that their meetings were a tad too serious and solemn – but yesterday’s meeting was filled with fun and laughter! Plus, we had five Table Topics speakers and three project speakers – that’s an accomplishment, more so for a corporate club! 

Anyway, I too enjoyed the meeting very much!














Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Burgeoning Plastic Waste in Penang














Plastic waste. Image credit: https://sustainable.org.nz/sustainable-business-news/its-not-just-about-july-5-ways-you-can-go-plastic-free/itsnotjustaboutjuly/

My blog post titled “We’re Becoming a Country of Thrash” dated September 24, 2018 is not even one week old and we’re already informed that Penang is also facing the same issue with unlicensed plastic recyclers. 

Sure, we accept that high-grade plastics can be fully recycled and even yielding good value – but plastic waste come in a motley variety and more often than not, low-grade plastics (e.g. straws or sheet plastic), is just not worth anything and worse, this obliges the plastic recyclers to dump or burn it. 

These illegal businesses wash tonnes of plastic waste each day and release an unimaginable cocktail of organic and chemical fluids into the public drainage. And then, under the cover of darkness, they burn plastics which cannot be recycled, thereby, creating an acrid stench and releasing cancer-causing dioxins into the air. 

Let’s be clear about it – this is a polluting industry. 

We should ban outright the import of plastic waste altogether and only focus on recycling our own domestic junk! 

The state estimates there are up to 200 enterprises recycling plastic waste in Penang – and only 27 of them are licensed. 

According to The Star Online today, the plastic waste does not just come from Australia and New Zealand – but also Japan and Europe. The world knows us well as a dumpsite! 

I can only conclude that local authorities are obviously lacking in vigilance or they are simply turning a blind eye to these flagitious activities which are defiling the environment. 

And Penang is a PH-governed state! It sure doesn’t look good for Pakatan Harapan! 

On Tuesday, I was in Bandar Puteri in Puchong, Selangor to attend the MyPuchong Toastmasters meeting. ‘Twas a good meeting and I relished my time there. 

It’s good to know that there are still Toastmasters clubs that are doing well and they make it a point to ensure their members learn as well as enjoy. 



















I took on the roles of Table Topics Evaluator as well as Speech Evaluator. 

I also presented an Advanced speech, #3 The Demonstration Talk from the Speaking to Inform manual. The title of my speech was “How Not to Win” and that was my 626th project speech todate.

A special thank-you to Kang Fong Luan, IPP and Area E1 Director for the invitation!



 












Yay-y-y-y, I was voted Best Project Speaker! 


And thus, I have qualified for the Advanced Communicator Silver award – for the fifth time.