Friday, March 30, 2007

Thank you School of Arts, USM

Orang berbudi, kita berbahasa.

First, I must say, I felt really honoured when the School or Arts, USM, through my friend Alias called and invited me to give a presentation on “Communicating and selling in a cluttered market”.

USM’s Adiwarna Galeri

And the first class treatment that they gave me, rasa nak menangis pun ada.

Alias personally picked me up at Penang International Airport at around 6:30 pm yesterday and we went straight to his office and lepak with another nice lecturer Dr Kipli and we talked about lots of things from travel to the courts of Surakarta, Solo and Ternate.

Then the talk... It started at 8:30 pm and ended at 10:00 pm. It was fun and the students and faculty members participated in a lively discussion.

Once again, thank you.

To Assoc Prof Mohamed Najib Ahmad Dawa, the Dean of School of Arts, you are one forward thinking gentleman. I hope your content and new media project will be a success. I would love to be a part of the project.

And right after the 'talk' the nice USM people sent me to USM’s partner hotel – Vistana. And I lepak with MorkyMoqq sampailah the weeeee morning hour. What did we talk about? Teramatlah banyak and also dengar lagu-lagu from his thumbdrive collection.


I left Penang at 9:05 this morning, touched down at KLIA at 10:00am and once I arrived at Sentral Station at 10:40, me, Ashwad and Rizal went to Fasta Pasta to celebrate. It’s Rizal’s 24th birthday!!

Birthday boy Rizal

Ashwad control macho


Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Terima Kasih Encik Kudus

Abdul Kudus, a nice man from Bangladesh helped to change the battery of my car yesterday.

Papa Khalid and I ‘kidnapped’ him from the kedai repair kereta and took him to my kereta yang posing maut tak berdaya sehari depan Bangsar Village (Thanks Ayun, Papa Khalid and Cekem for masukkan duit dalam parking meter).

Kudus has been working for Mun Thoong Car Accessories for 10 years. He also gave me lots of pesanan pasal kereta.

I asked him, “Battery ni berapa lama warranty dia?”.

He said, “Satu tahun. Tapi kalau pasang lampu, pergi jalan-jalan, battery kong, itu tak masuk warranty.”

I smiled and dalam hati aku kata “amboi, amboi, amboi...”

Anyway, after fixing the battery, Papa Khalid and I took Kudus pergi makan kat Devi’s. He is a nice chap.

Today will be another hectic day.

Going for a meeting later with Nuzul and Cekem at Sapura Building. And then rush to the airport to catch the 5:15 flight to Penang. Will be giving a talk tonight at USM. Staying overnight at Vistana and MorkyMoqq akan bawak I pergi makan the best burger in town. Burger apa best sangat kat Penang tu…? Hmmmm....

Oh BTW, I got very good feedback on the communications workshop that I conducted for 2 days at MIDA.

And yang best sekali, the training department at MIDA wants me to come back and give more training. Alhamdulillah...

One more thing... You must get yourselves buku "I am Muslim" by Dina Zaman. Ada parts yang buat I ketawa melekek-lekek. Ada part yang insaf.. But I particularly suka the chapter on "Born Again Virgins".

Tuesday, March 27, 2007


What a stressful morning!!!

Today, at 6:30 am, I went to Citibank to settle the payment for my Mastercard yang dah a few days past due.

Right after that at 6:45 as usual I went to Devi’s for my teh tarik and roti bakar.

And this time, instead of being the normal anal me (always checking on things, takut terlupa barang and all), I terlupa to swith off lampu kereta.

And at 7:45, after my cup of tea and after flipping a few pages of The Star, I masuk kereta and of courselah… kereta tak boleh start.

Apa lagi… I told my brains – jangan panic ok…

And I had the best exercise!!

Tinggalkan kereta kat tempat parking between Madam Kwan’s and the New Bangsar Village, and went to kedai repair kereta belakang Restoran Syed (adalah 400 metres pergi-balik... keluarlah peluh). But it was just too early. The mechanics were still in bed (boinking perhaps…).

So I took the cab to make sure I’ll reach MIDA at Plaza Sentral before 8:30 because today is the second day of training for the directors and officers of MIDA who will be selling Malaysia in the Global Market.

It’s 8:45 now… and I told myself, cool.. relax… breathe normally and shine…

Papa Khalid and Cekem akan tolong letak coins dalam parking meter. Petang nanti I ganti battery, after the training… AHHHHHH.

Yang penting, presentation and training kena meletop..

Sunday, March 25, 2007


I worked throughout the weekend and enjoyed it.

On Saturday, I facilitated a brainstorming session on content/branding/strategic thinking for a group of friends at Country Heights Club House.

They are an interesting group of 30-something women of substance.

On Sunday, I had the luxury of waking up slightly late (8:30am), and then ketuk laptop to prepare for the upcoming training for MIDA, Berita Publishing and UNIMAS.

In the evening, I went to Silverfish in Bangsar to get me Dina Zaman’s “I am Muslim” only to find out that Silverfish tutup of Sundays. Alamak…

I am a fan of Dina Zaman. She writes so well.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Kisah 'kendem'

Ashwad was mad yesterday at a convenience store over a ‘kendem’.

‘Kendem’? Apa ceritanya. Ini ceritanya.


A Mat Rempit was taking such a long time talking to a Burmese/Myanmarese cashier who obviously needs to enrol in a BM101 class.

Mat Rempit: Ada ‘kendem’ (pronounced ‘kernderm’)?

Cashier: Ada. Pergi belakang tengok.

So the Mat Rempit went to the back and couldn’t find the ‘kendem’ and came back to the cashier.

Mat Rempit: Tak ada ‘kendem’.

Cashier: Ada. Belakang. Ada tulis tepung gandum.

Mat Rempit: Bukan. Itu kendemlah. Kendem, kendem... (with his eyes directing the cashier to the condoms behind the cash register).

The cashier still couldn’t figure out.

Suddenly Ashwad, loud and clear said it.

Ashwad: CONDOM… Kendem, kendem. Sebut CONDOM. Itu untuk … (Aswad using his fingers to describe sexual intercourse).

Cashier: Oh… (smiles).

And the Mat Rempit paid the cashier and walked away with a shy tudung wearing girl holding on to a file (obviously just came back from class or tuition) waiting outside the convenience store.


Tuesday, March 20, 2007


Pagi meeting pasal next training session for UNIMAS with Dr Victor at Mines.

Lepas tu rushed back to prepare a proposal for Nuzul.

And now baru boleh rehat kejap sambil belek script emcee.

Tonight I’ll be emceeing ‘Pelancaran Filem Aduh Saliha’, to be directed by M Nasir with Mawi in the lead.

Emcee ni tolong kawan-kawan -- budak-budak MCKK (old boys) yang produce film ni.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Writers are STARs

When the big group of great talented journalists and editors left The New Straits Times a couple of years back, I did miss their columns and stories. Why? Because their flair for writing, their articles and style, really entertained me.

For me, reading is not just about getting new information but to also get to know the world that the writers live in and how they see the world.

So when Datin Rose Ismail, Fatimah Abu Bakar, Aishah Ali, Dazman Manan, Hisham Harun and many more left (don’t ask me why they left… if you want to know ask the people in the keluargo-journo-circle and they’ll tell you…), I tercari-cari kerja-kerja baru mereka.

They are like recording artistes – you keep on wanting more from them because they entertain you while delivering the message.

Now I’m happy all the great writers dah bergabung to produce a cool magazine for ‘women of substance’, MADAM CHAIR. And not only women, men too buy the magazine because of the mass appeal.

For me, I read MADAM CHAIR because I love the way the contributors write – they are the stars.

In Volume VII, I particularly enjoyed the story on how Nafisah Radin built NR Architect into a great brand and Aishah Ali’s interview with the former Chief Judge of Malaysa, Tan Sri Siti Norma Yaakob.

Since we are discussing writers and what they write, Monsieur Kimster in his latest posting again went back to debating whether to write a book or continue serving the Big Company. What to write lah? Will it sell lah?

Kimster… Write about sex. Why not? After all, Dr Ruth Westheimer became prime time material because she managed to make the editorial on sex acceptable for under-18 viewers.

Talking about sex, the other night, I was so ‘impressed’ (for lack of a better word) with how patient and ‘considerate’ of a male cat to not force itself on a female cat. Mengekor sampai kat setengah jam -- unlike what we normally see on National Geographic, terus mount.

Oklah, enough… before this blog becomes Kamasutra.blogspot.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Hidup Datuk Wong Chun Wai !!

That's it Datuk Wong Chun Wai, yes, finally someone understands how the millions of rakyat feel.

I find his views in The Sunday Star yesterday very honest and refreshing.

During my TV3 days, I selalu 'bertembung mesra' with Datuk Wong Chun Wai on many occasions on assignments, normally covering the PM and collaborating with The Star for The Star's Learning Skills events.

Dengan izin yer Datuk Chun Wai… (kawan-kawan, ini cuma sebahagian, kalau nak details I believe ada kat The Star online kot…)

“….. There is no need to take criticisms badly. Some of our politicians or bureaucrats seem incapable of handling such brickbats, preferring to hear things that they want to hear only. Instead of addressing the issues concerned, some have reacted negatively and with intolerance. To suggest that bloggers have an anti-national agenda simply implies that some of us are still not logged into blogsphere. Some have yet to see the importance of the New Media, assuming that bloggers are all political commentators, without understanding that many travel writers have embraced the new medium for their writing.

From food reviewers to motoring journalists, many have chosen blogging to gain a bigger audience to complement the print and electronic media that they work in.

It’s a new world but it is still not too late for some of our politicians and bureaucrats to check out blogsphere....”

I write for fun and to connect with people …

Friday, March 16, 2007


It’s Friday and it’s time for our monthly book-hunt trip.

Off we went to our favourite place -- Borders at The Curve.

Ashwad ‘high’ on books.

Ashwad and Rizal tak sabar with their new toys.

What did we get?

Books good ole books from ‘who killed humpty dumpty’ to ‘surviving a dysfunctional family’, to ‘engaging and credibility building’ to ‘self-indulgence’ to 'pseudo-intelligent books' .

Seronok kan?

And then lepak and makan kat Little Penang.

I’ll write the reviews later.

Now tengok gambar kat bawah ni and cuba teka siapa beli buku mana?

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Engage the public...Baru best

After a hectic day yesterday, I decided not to take the laptop home and planned to just relax and watch TV.

I moved from one channel to another until I got to RTM and stayed.

Why? Because a ‘live talkshow’ was on!

And as a former anchor/editor/producer, I can’t help but to indulge.

Now, the programme …

The host: Datuk Johan Jaffar.

The topic: FTA.

The guests: Tan Sri Adam Kadir (Chairman of Pos Malaysia), Prof Dr Mahani Zainal Abidin (Economist), Datuk David Chua (Representing the Chinese Chamber of Commerce).

Why I stayed on RTM? Because I wanted to see the editorial strategy – making complex issues simple to be digested by the mass audience.

Did they achieve that? Well, while Datuk Johan asked ‘relatively’ appropriate questions, I still feel that the editorial was more to satisfy the ‘initiated’ not so much to engage the ‘uninitiated’. Complex issues remained more complex and if you were one of those who wanted to know more about the issue, you would later decide to see Yasmin Hani and her Watcchhaaa…

While the topic was a ‘niche’ one, the editorial team failed to make an effort to give it a ‘mass appeal’. Only by giving ‘niche’ topic a mass appeal will the public benefit. In return, the rakyat will give pointers and feedback to policy makers. Like it or not we are moving towards ‘participatory democracy’ and ‘engaging the minds of the masses’. Engage the rakyat and they will help steer the country to the right path in the right direction.

The respondents on the show were trying so hard to appeal to their peers more than to educate the public.

My rule on editorials for TV production is – no matter how ‘niche’ a topic is, it must always.

1. Satisfy the peers (40% of the content).
2. Educate the public (60% of the content).

Meaning – Engage the people ‘in the know’ and open up the discussion/topic to a bigger audience – we’ll gain more with more contributions from people of different backgrounds.

In the mass media, nothing should be too difficult to comprehend.

We must be good story tellers.

Barulah orang sokong initiative yang dilihat teramatlah complex.

Engage the public -- tak payah 'highbrow' sangat

Tak gitu bang?

(Pix from

Rambut & Jambul

As we grow older our hair on the head menjadi less and less.

I prefer to call the ‘phenomenon’, and the new ‘space’ created by the ‘hairdrops’ as ‘Aristocratic Receding Hairline’.

But lately I noticed, it’s not just the hair on the head.

Hair on the kaki (read: betis and peha) pun ada sikit kurang.

Is this part of the maturing process? And what should I call it – Aristocratic what?

And the hair on the left arm ada uban jugak... Takkan nak inai lengan kot?

(Pix from

Monday, March 12, 2007

Perang Burung.

Recently at Bukit Setiawangsa, I witnessed a ‘perang burung’.

What perang burung?

On the road leading to Puncak Setiawangsa, ada tiga species burung berperang.

At the same location, burung tiung lawan burung tiung – ada 4 pasangan.

And burung pipit lawan burung pipit – empat pasangan jugak.

And also another jenis burung warna kuning, tak tahu apa jenisnya, pun lawan gak.

On the same spot, side by side.

Very strange indeed. Apa maknanya? Malapetaka akan menimpa ker? Oh tidak...lari-lari, selamatkan rambut kita...

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Telur, melecur ringan, Kuching & Power Breakfast bersama Tuan Kimster

1. Telur dan Melecur…

Lebih 40 tahun, and almost everyday, my fingers would ‘melecur ringan’ trying to break open half-boiled eggs – sebab telur tu kan panas lepas masak. Kalau nak makan dengan kicap kenalah ketuk dengan sudu, break the eggs into 2 parts and then scoop the egg white and yolk and makan.

Now… tak ada ker ‘industrial designer ker’ atau any designerlah (..not fashion designer… sensitive wor…after my last posting) yang nak design alat yang boleh tolong kopek telur separuh masak supaya jari tak terseksa dengan kepanasan telur?

Lagi satu, teh tarik served dalam gelas tak bertangkai. Bila pegang gelas di kedai mamak tu, jari jemari kita ‘melecur ringan’ sebab panas. Tak ada ke pereka-pereka yang boleh reka gelas khas untuk teh tarik – macam beer mug ker, sebab dah sah gelas tu panas..

2. Kuching.

Kuching from my room at Hilton

Kuching from my room at Hilton.

Kuching from my room at Hilton.

Got back from kuching yesterday afternoon. As usual, it was fun conducting “Crafting an Image, Branding & Positioning” training for UNIMAS.

Prof Datuk Dr Abdul Rashid Abdullah, the VC, and his team, as usual, as energetic as ever and the training session was a very productive and fun one.

Whenever I go to Kuching plan nak diet tak menjadi… Makan sedap betul -- seafood fresh. Had lots of seafood at the famous makan place Topspot.

3. Sarapan Kuasa (Power Breakfast) – kalau ikut translation filem dalam DVD.

This morning had a great discussion over breakfast with The Great Kimster and his boss on Oursourcing, Offshoring, Change Management, Capability Building and Engagement.

Great to meet great minds early in the mornig – terus motivated macam nak rak…

Pix from:

1. Camera phone sendiri.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Antara 'profesionalisme' dan 'divarisme'

When I read the story about “Linda Onn’s No Show at The Academy Awards”, dalam suratkhabar The Star today, I can’t help but being reminded of my days at TV3.

When I was the Manager of Editorial Services, among others, I was responsible for the branding of all the News and Current Affairs TV personalities – including what they wear, hair styles, etc.

Under me, among others, were Ezzah Aziz Fawzy, Datin Seri Normala Samsudin, Azizah Ariffin, Dangsuria Zainurdin, Tengku Elida Bustaman and many more.

Together with the designers and the wardrobe head at that time, Zaihani, we worked very hard to brand and position the personalities. Of course, what we see in others and what others see in themselves, sometimes ‘amatlah berbeza’ – however, there must always be a compromise, as at the end of the day, the show must go on.

There were many personalities who were sad because they did not get the clothes that they wanted but they still put up a great show. Why? Because they were (and will always be) journalists first and personality second.

As a journalist no matter how ‘trying’ a situation is, the report must be in before TX (transmission time).

So that’s why during my time, yes, we had personalities crying over tak dapat pakai major designer labels and earings gedabak, tapi still managed to present great reports. It’s all about professionalism. Derita hati kita tanggung sendiri – bukan ker begitu.

Oh BTW, Radzuan Radziwill’s design amatlah cantik. Akak-akak drag queen sanggup berbunuh nak pakai design tu tau!

Oh well…. Rambut sama hitam, kuku pakai cutex.

As a TV host, we are journalist first, and ciri-ciri 'divarisme' kalau boleh kita kikis – baru tinggi peribadi.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Tagged lagi... Why I blog...

I dah kena tagged by KuE.

Oklah ini jawapannya to the tag -- WHY I BLOG..

1. Because I love sharing my weird thoughts with others.
2. Because I look at things differently and sengaja suka cari pasal ngan orang lain.
3. Because I know if I were to tell what I think ‘orally’ (don’t get me wrong here) people will go to sleep.
4. Because I love hitting the keys of my white, small, twinhead laptop.
5. Because I sunyi.

Cukup KuE?

Now I will tag:

Kichi (
MorkyMoqq (
Ewan (
Faslin (
Roul (

Sila berikan enam sebab kenapa anda blog (termasuklah photoblog.. ingat boleh escape ker?)
Selamat beramal.

Oh BTW, I'll be going to Kuching again on Wednesday to do some consultation work at UNIMAS. Apa lagi kengkawan di Kuching, mari pesta...

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Ideas, Positioning and Powell Bookstore

I respect people with ideas and people who are not afraid to sell the ideas and develop them into products to make our lives better.

Never mind if people laugh at the ideas or ridicule us or make stupid comments – because, believe me 3 or 4 years later, things that most people dismissed as ‘idealist dream’ will have great impact on our lives.

Pillow with built-in radio

Like today for example, while I was having lunch with NK Anuar at Devi’s Bangsar, someone approached us and introduced -- a pillow with built in radio. How interesting!

While some people need complete silence to sleep, there are people like me who need some noise to make us sleep. And this pillow is a wonderful thing.

But many people laughed at the guy who tried to sell the product. Toksah putus asa …


And today I must say, finally, yes finally someone dah nampak how to position the Program Latihan Khidmat Negara (NS). That’s why I said Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye is brilliant. What NS needs is just a simple correct positioning and cool branding and the right PR spin.

In fact when I hosted AGENDA, a talkshow on ASTRO about 2 years back, I did say -- while NS has great mission & objectives on jatidiri and race-relations, it shouldn’t be positioned as a ‘boot camp’. But can’t blame them because the ‘organizers’ are people of my father’s generation and they still define ‘discipline’ as pakai uniform, rambut kena macam sojar, kena merentas desa, pumping 100 kali, nyanyi lagu patriotic. But honestly – discipline is not about ‘appeal luaran’. It is all about 'jiwa & dalaman'.

And the youngsters tak suka sojar-sojar ni…

NS should be about ketahanan mental, creative thinking and leadership and with all these, good race-relations will automatically berlaku.
Objektif memang bagus...tetapi perlu dilaksanakan dengan mengambil kira pandangan dunia (worldview / frame of reference) anak muda. A bit of 'popular culture' (pop-culture) approach is needed and has been proven successful, when we need to communicate with teenagers and young adults.
Something must be done to reduce the generation gap which is very-very seriously wide in Malaysia at the moment, especially between 'pembuat dasar dan pembiaya' and 'the young ones'.

For the NS programme, they should invite people like MICROSOFT’s founder, Google’s founders and funky young successful world leaders that the youngsters can relate to, to give talks.
If Queen Rania or Queen Latifah can communicate the message better, why not invite them -- instead of ketua-ketua bermisai dan nampak garang -- because we will eventually ajar anak-anak -- to get things done kena garang dan jerit kat orang -- tak betul tu.
If NS is positioned as hip, educational and will transform youngesters into resourceul humans, all you know, soon, we will have youngsters ‘applying’ to be in NS, as opposed to youngsters ‘drafted’ (kena paksa, kalau tidak kena masuk jel) to go for NS.

In Israel, that’s what they do – they invite big names to inspire schoolchildren -- no wonderlah they are so good.


Moving on, bravo to the leaders in Klang for the E-Library project.

It reminded me of Powell Bookstore in Portland Oregon.

When I was a student in Portland Oregon, I spent lots of time at Powell Bookstore. It’s a huge bookstore as big as Bangsar Village Shopping Centre and many young people hang out there to read and buy cheap books.


Thursday, March 01, 2007

Makan adalah Therapy.

McDonalds, Restoran kat Sungai Penchala, Cafe sebelah Grand Continental kat Kuala Terengganu and Restoran Salim kat Setiawangsa – semua sedap.


Rizal & Ashwad enjoying the food

After the presentation in Putrajaya yesterday, En Amin Silat Cekak took us to Restoran Salim.

We have never heard of this eating place – my oh my… Masakan kampung semua ada kat sini. It’s right behind the LRT Setiawangsa station, dekat rumah Pak Abu Pakar Pelamin.

And as usual, melantak sampai mengantuk.

Cendol kat Pad Thai Restaurant, Hartamas Square.

Tempat lepak yang 'happening' kat sebelah Grand Continental KT.


Enough of cerita makan...

Last night, I had a great time watching Dreamgirls.

Bukannya apa, I was entertaining myself to the subtitles yang teramatlah jahanam. Contohnya:

“Oh baby, please give me a chance..”
“Oh bayi, berilah aku peluang..”

This is our big chance to break into the world of show business..”
“Inilah pelaung untuk berehat dalam dunia pertunjukan…”

“We must make amends here and there…"

"Kita kena menjadi lelaki sana dan sini …” (now… that I rasa nak terpelanting pun ada..)

Kata Rizal, they now use voice recognition machine to do translation… Oh yer ker? Sepatutnya lagi eloklah.

When I was a kid, the subtitle dah memang teruk dah.


“Lets go to war..!!”
‘Mari berperang… Sedia.. Api…!!”