Sugar Free, Common Sense Free

This is Murray “Sugar Free” Chocolate Cookies. It is imported all the way from USA, the land of milk and honey, and the land that brought us weird things like Britney Spears and Michael Jackson. It looks just like any other sugar free chocolate cookies on the market.

Those cookies caught my eye, not because I was hungry. (Errr… remind me to get back to the gym once my project deadlines are over.) It was this little warning message printed on the front of the packaging that drew my attention.

I checked to ensure I was holding a pack of cookies and not a pack of cigarettes before I put it the item onto the shelf. I’ve seen warning messages in bold printed on cigarette boxes before but hell, I sure never seen them printed on a pack of COOKIES!
I could see why they do it though. Products like these are made to fool fat people health-conscious individuals like me into parting with our hard-earned cash just so we enjoy eating ‘normal’ food without the guilt.

Nowadays its just too damn difficult to go on diet even with ‘healthy’ products like these on the market. There’s not a lot of things you can eat. Sugar Free doesn’t mean Fat Free; Fat Free doesn’t mean Carb Free; Carb Free usually means they taste like a pile of waxy dog crap; and the only thing that’s Sugar Free, Fat Free AND Carb Free is like, water.
Weight-loss is such a big money business in a lot of countries and people are buying these products expecting them to work miracles. Trust Big Brother to step in and give these so-called “healthy” food the cigarette box treatment.

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Patriotism Misunderstood

(continued from last entry. I took a lot of time editting this entry before I publish it because I have to particularly careful with what I say and how I say it. The end result is not exactly what I wanted but I’ve copped enough shit already and I don’t need more.)

This post today is not about me joining in on some childish mudslinging match between Singapore and Malaysia. I was just inspired to write this entry after observing how my fellow Malaysians react when negative aspects about our own country are being highlighted.
I’m grateful that Malaysia is a peaceful nation and, when compared to the many war and famine strickened countries around the world, we should really feel happy with what we got. There’s been all these talk about racism in Malaysia, but I’m appreciative of the fact that I keep my Chinese last name, practise our own religion and celebrate Chinese New Year. In addition, I think Badawi is doing a fantastic job so far (not being sarcastic here) though I’m afraid I cannot say the same things for our other leaders in the parliament.
That said, Malaysia is not perfect. I acknowledge the fact that Malaysia is a developing nation, and that it still has a long way to go before it realises Vision 2020 (if ever) and becomes on par with the first world countries.
There are a lot of things not right about our country. ‘Efficient’ government departments, ‘zero’ corruption, ‘excellent’ public transport system, ‘fair’ tertiary education scholarship criteria, ‘not enough’ race-based political parties and so on, being the few of them. And the feeling I got is that majority of Malaysians, the younger ones in particular, either don’t care about it, don’t know about it, or worse, don’t want to hear people talking about it.

When F (note I said F, not X. They’re two totally different people) wrote a list of Malaysia’s flaws on her blog in an entry titled ‘Negaraku’, I’m surprised she got flakked for it eventhough a lot of what she said is true.
Maybe its to do with the fact that she’s a Malaysian living abroad. Maybe its the way she used another country as an example of “how things are done right”. But among other things, she was called ignorant, superficial, even a traitor for dissing her own country. Someone made an interesting comment on her blog saying Malaysia’s biggest flaw is not teaching its citizens to accept it for its flaws.
Wait a minute, Why should we accept the flaws of this country? Are we saying that we should accept handbag-snatchers, dirty streets and crazy-ass traffic officers seeking a contribution to their retirement fund as the norm? Of course not.
I’m just disappointed that there are people I know who’s saying we should all just shut the fook up and quietly eat all the crap being thrown at us JUST because that’s what we grew up with and that’s the way things work around here. I mean, if I were to follow THAT advice during my fiasco with the Malaysian Customs, I’m probably never ever gonna get my money back.
No, I will not let you screw me in the ass just because that’s the way things work around here. If you’re being unfairly treated because of some stupid policy, stand up and speak up for yourself. Challenge the authority.
What everyone ought to remember is that love for the country is very different from love for the government. A lot of shits we had to put up with are the direct result of both the government’s lack of planning/lack of foresight/lack of common sense and some uncivilised citizens. Keeping our cities clean is everyone’s responsibilities, but how many people actually follow that principle?

We should ALWAYS love our country because patriotism is a virtue. We should ALWAYS be proud of the Malaysian flag because it is our identity. But we should NEVER EVER accept snatch thefts as the norm. We should NEVER condone corruption as part of the Malaysian culture. And above all else, we should NEVER stop challenging the government to work for its people. Each of us citizens have a part to play to make Malaysia a better place. One of the ways we can help is by talking, or as some people put it, ‘complaining’ about the issues.
There’s nothing wrong when other countries are being used for comparison. I’m not saying those who’ve been overseas are holier art thou. Hey, we all learn from other people’s successes and failures – that’s why we study history, that’s how we grow. Don’t be too fast to shoot down someone, especially a fellow Malaysian, and accuse them of dissing our own country just because another country’s name was mentioned. More often than not, it’s after staying overseas and observing the ways things are being done elsewhere that we realise how things could be better done with our own country.
Of course, one has to be reasonable when it comes to this.
I’m not gonna compare Malaysia’s hot, humid and rainy climate to Australia’s clean fresh air across four seasons because we are not Gods and we cannot change the weather. I’m not gonna bitch about how, in an effort to boost birthrate, the Australian government gives AUD3,000 (that’s RM8,500) to the parents for each baby born (it’s true), whereas the Malaysian government gives you nothing more than a pat on the back and a “Well done!” because I know its silly to compare Malaysia’s cash reserves to that of a first world nation.

However, I’m gonna bitch about how in Malaysia ‘courtesy’ was an alien word to people working at the cashier counters before Starbucks came along and taught us how to smile and say ‘Hi’ to our customers, and not just stare and follow them everywhere when a customer walked into their shop like how some shopkeepers do because they’re afraid you’re gonna steal their stuff. I’m going to bitch about how in some countries, people study overseas because their results are too poor to get a scholarship into local universities; whereas in Malaysia, people study overseas because their results are too good to get a scholarship into local universities.
There’s a limit though. I’m all for weeding out the negative aspects of our country but not at the expense of losing our Malaysian culture and identity. I mean, if the VCD seller at Petaling Street starts speaking to me in perfect English I’m probably gonna slap him.

I’m an optimist and I think, with the exception of a sad few, that most Malaysians love their country, including F. Home is where the heart is and so far I haven’t yet met any Malaysians who is so ashamed of our own country they had to introduce themselves as Mongolians.
I think Malaysians in general just don’t like to hear criticisms about their own country. Everytime we hear someone mentioning something remotely negative about our country we automatically go into defensive mode and attack the person making those comments. Frankly, I think that kind of attitude is sad. If that’s our idea of patriotism, then I think we’re pretty much screwed.
So all I’m saying is this, people: Be proud of Malaysia and love your country. Just don’t love it blindly.

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Die Die Both Ways

This entry is getting too long but its 4am now and I need my sleep, so I just snipped it in half. I’ll post up Part 1 today and Part 2 tomorrow. Keep in mind that I’m on semi-hiatus now and I’m not gonna put a lot of effort on my entries till my project is over. There won’t be much lameass jokes or photoshopped pictures to spice up so apologies in advance.
Until then, please bear with me. 🙂
There’s been a commotion going on in the blogosphere lately involving some of my friends.
It all started when F (a Malaysian living in Singapore) posted a harsh-but-true entry on why she thinks Singapore is a better country to live in compared to Malaysia. Around the same time, X (a Singaporean living in Singapore) posted an entry after her unpleasant trip to Kuala Lumpur. This in turn resulted in a barrage of equally harsh counterattacks on both F and X by some irate KL residents, including M (a Malaysian living in Malaysia), V (a Malaysian living in the UK) and S (a UK tiger living in Malaysia).
Coincidentally, a few days later, two of the above people had their period. While all these is happening, I (a Malaysian with an Australian permanent residency living in Malaysia who likes Singapore but wants to live in Perth until he’s ready to settle down in Kuching when he’s older) wisely chose not say anything because when it was so close to National Day tensions ran high. And besides, hell hath no fury like female bloggers with PMS.
As a result, a lot of people were left wondering which side of the fence I’m sitting on. For the record, I’d spoken to X before she posted that entry and I know what exactly she’s trying to say. I’m not offended. I know for a fact she means no malice, though I have to admit the way she wrote it left the door wide open for misintepretation. But when M, V, S and many others took that piece of misinterpreted information as an insult to the city they resided in, I don’t know whose side it is to blame.
And frankly, I don’t care anymore because this whole thing is degenerating into a kindergarten mudslinging match quicker than I can say “Stop fighting, children!”
Attempts on my part at trying to reconcile the two usually resulted in inspirational conversations like this over MSN.
(note: not actual conversations and words are grossly exagerrated.)
M: your friend X is a bitch.
K: oh come on. she was just writing about her trip.
M: how can you say that? don’t tell me you weren’t offended by what she wrote!
K: i’m not. it’s a fact she was molested, she got cheated and she had an overall bad experience.
M: well YOU TELL HER there are other ways to approach the situation than to ridicule the whole of KL. she could have written in a more polite manner than to dish out insults against the whole KL! do u think that’s ok? i live in KL and i’m offended!
K: but but but…!
Later in the day.
X: your friend S is dumb.
K: I think if you changed the title of that entry from “KL pretty much sucked” to “My KL trip pretty much sucked” you could’ve saved yourself from a lotta trouble.
X: that is not the point Kenny! I did not even insult the WHOLE of Malaysia! I merely said the KL people I SAW were rude and these ppl took it so personally when they attacked me like i murdered their mothers! your friend M even called me a dog. do u think that’s ok? screw u kenny, i am so disappointed in you.
K: but but but…!
In Chinese, we call this situation “die die both ways.”

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World Toilet College

I’m not sure how many people read this article from Trust me, I tried to keep a straight face reading it, but I failed miserably.

I thought I’ve seen everything, but a toilet college!? Incredulous!
Heck, I didn’t know there’s even a World Toilet Organisation based in Singapore until I read that article. But make no mistake about it, funny as it is, the World Toilet Organisation (WTO) is a legitimate organisation that aims to promote hygiene and sanitation in public toilets. They even got their own website at!
I clicked on their website and saw this.

What a pun!

EARLY BIRD DISCOUNT! My Big Bird laughed so hard it fell off. Almost.
Anyway, you gotta pity the World Trade Organisation for sharing the three-letter acronym as the World Toilet Organisation. Imagine what the families of their employees are gonna have to put up with.

Mrs Lim: “Ehhhh… hello Mrs Yee! How are you doing today?”
Mrs Yee: “I’m fine! How’s your husband har? He found a job already or not?”
Mrs Lim: “Yah! He’s now working for the WTO!”
Mrs Yee: “Wah! WTO! World Trade Organisation ah?!”
Mrs Lim: “No lah… World Toilet Organisation. :(”

Aerial view of the World Toilet Organisation (WTO) Headquarters in the heart of Singapore’s CBD.

I think there’s gonna be weirder conversations when the World Toilet College (WTC) gets up and running.

Jimmy: “Hi guys!”
David: “Eh Jimmy, long time no see!”
Ah Leong: “Yah man, I heard you went to Australia. What you studying there, man?”
Jimmy: “I’m at Melbourne University. Majoring in Computer Engineering.”
David: “I’m doing my Bachelor of Laws at NUS right now. Majoring in Property Law.”
Ah Leong: “WAH!”
Jimmy: “Where you studying now, Ah Leong?”
Ah Leong: “Oh… I’m studying at World Toilet College. Majoring in Advanced Shit Management.”

I think things are gonna get real interesting.
Well, there is a lot of speculation what the World Toilet College is gonna be like, but nobody seem to have any specific details. No one knows who the lecturers are, what the facilities are like, and so on.
Now, thanks to very reliable inside sources (ok lah, it was just the cleaning lady at my office), I managed to get my hot little hands on some never-before-seen, exclusive, top-secret photos from inside the World Toilet College.
Remember, you’ve seen it first on 😉
Here’s what the inside of their world-class state-of-the-art lecture theatre looks like.

Students are invited to sit on toilet bowls during classes.

The graduation ceremony.

The graduation regalia includes wearing a toilet seat around your neck, and instead of wearing a mortarboard, you wear a “tam pui” (kid’s potty) on your head.

To save on costs, the certificates are printed on toilet paper in “special brown” colour.

Mr Lau Sai King’s parents are gonna be so proud of their son.

I’m sure enrolment numbers will jump wildly as soon as the World Toilet College begins operation.

MTV Asia VJ Hunt

I’m still not feeling well but I’ve finally succumbed to visiting the doctor after much deliberation. The doc suspected mumps and prescribed me with a whole lotta pills to swallow. He gave me an MC, but I’m not gonna be able to use it. In fact, I got so much to do at work, I’ll be staying back at the office this Saturday and Sunday.
Since I’m not in the mood for entertaining, I’m gonna bore you with my weekend instead.

I was strolling around Kuching’s shopping district last Sunday when I noticed MTV Asia staging their VJ Hunt at Crowne Plaza. I totally wasn’t planning on hanging around to watch the show but my friend Brandon Juan was there and he convinced me to stay. Besides, Guy Sebastian was there.

Fine, so I lied.
I thought long and hard whether or not its wise of me to put up their photos and videos, especially when these are all Kuching ppl and they can bash me up easily if they want to. But I decided since they’ll all be appearing on MTV Asia anyway, they shouldn’t have any problems appearing on right?

This guy was on Malaysian Idol before or something.

The contestants were asked to do a brief introduction of themselves, perform a special talent (usually singing), then do a spiel introducing a music video. More often than not, the results turned out quite horrendous.

The new MTV show requires the VJ to host upside down.

I don’t understand why so many of the contestants went on stage and decided to suddenly transform into an angmoh and speak in an obviously fake American accent. What is it with being a VJ and speaking with an ang moh accent anyway?
Whatever happened to Asian pride? Come on guys, you are from MALAYSIA and you’re auditioning for MTV ASIA. Why must speak in ang moh accent? Speak in Hokkien cannot ar?

He said “Dude, what’s with the fake accent?”

From what I saw, probably one out of every twenty of them deserved to be in the finalists. The rest were so bad, if I saw any of them on MTV screens, I’m gonna sue MTV Headquarters for insulting my intelligence.
Download video clip here. (WMV, 11.2MB)
Anyway, I waited for Brandon’s turn to go up the stage. Heh, I don’t think he did too well either.

Better luck next time, dude.

The best thing that night was meeting a few readers who recognised and greeted me, instead of freaking me out by passing me a paper note that reads “Kenny, what is KNNCCB?”. Drop me an e-mail so I can send you the photos.
Who’s there sitting in a corner digging her ear?

No shit, its Denise Keller!

Denise sure got an eye for a guy like me.

Speaking of Denise Keller, I thought Christian Jigmo from Eye For A Guy look like a character from Journey to the West. Don’t you think?
Here, let me show you.

Sung Wu Kung!

I’m only saying that because a friend of mine thought he looked cute but I begged to differ. No, I’m not jealous. Really. Look at my not-jealous face.
Anyway, its not an insult, its a compliment. Imagine what Sung Wu Kung could do with his magical baton that can grow long and short.

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