Saturday, November 01, 2008



I was at Chawan in Bangsar enjoying tea and tahu bakar with the “movers and shakers” when Jef sent the text message “Uncle, I injured my ankle during the game, can you help me get an ankle guard?”

I rushed to the nearest pharmacy to get the ankle guard. And what do I know about ankle guards and sports injuries? Well, this is what life-long learning is all about.

At Guardian Pharmacy I bought two different ankle guards for Jef. By now, it's certain he will not be playing for NS Wanderers in the Cobra 10s tomorrow.

When I met him at PJ Hilton – where the team members were putting up, he could hardly walk.

The prelim check by the doctor indicated no major fracture or too serious an injury.

Nevertheless, Jef’s ego deflated and his spirit dented, as he wanted to help his team to win tomorrow.

We had dinner at Paya Serai at the Lobby of PJ Hilton and got him to retire for the day early. I hope this nephew of mine will feel better and get better tomorrow.

When I was young, when I hurt myself mom and dad would always give me words of encouragement so that the spirit within will help the body to heal faster.

Since Abang Mustafa and Kakak is far away, I'll be the 'surrogate' guardian angel. And I feel good doing it.


Now back to the “movers and shakers” at Chawan.

There were 6 of us.

Rida – a Malay PR consultant who is married to a Ceylonese gentleman,

Eda – a beautiful Malay content developer who is seeing a Chinese sociologist,

Lenny – a sexy Malay lady who recently changed her status from married to divorced after she dumped her lazy Malay husband,

Kay – another recently divorced Malay lady who is still sore at her irresponsible ex-husband, a Malay,

Alvin – a cute Chinese guy who is an engineer and spends more time at the gym than at the dining table and he is into Malays,

And of course me, the listener extraordinaire.

This group is what the ‘Neo Malaysia’ is all about – yes, may be a minority but the number is growing, especially in urban areas – different races coming together celebrating both their similarities and differences.

It is when you are very different from one another that you get really attracted and curious to know how the other party lives and what makes them tick.

And some, like my movers+shakers group ended up marrying someone from a different race.

I would like to believe this was how and what it was like during the glory days of the Malacca Sultanate when Malacca was the centre of trade, power and culture.

Cosmopolitan Malacca was a place where people from the Malay Archipelago, China, India and Europe mingled and traded a variety of goods.

Life was good then – prosperous and culturally rich.

But today, sometimes I think we are moving backwards.

Due to the need to play to the gallery, politicians said things that promoted anger and hatred instead of promoting cooperation and collaboration among the various races.

Whatever happened to lateral thinking?

The same group of people would later talk about national integration. And some would translate all these into majlis tarian, pertunjukan budaya pelbagai kaum etc etc – like it’s not natural.

I just hope the next time when there is a need to play to the gallery, just go and see the “movers and shakers” and learn a thing or two from them.

Understand the adjustments they had to make and how they resolved conflicts in the best intelligent way.

When decisions are based on trust, love and honesty, the result will be just beautiful.

And mix marriages will create a new pool of great genes -- Beautiful people with strong DNA.

Of course there are other issues too, but then again, we can think of the best possible way to solve them…