Saturday, 23 December 2006

2006 – A Year of New

I would to say that 2006 is the best year in recent memory for me. It’s probably due to the fact that I can remember most of what I did. The year started off all right I guess. I moved out, had a makeover (I just threw out my old clothes and bought new ones, nothing drastic) and gained a tonne of confidence. It had its bumps and high points but it is probably the first year in recent memory where it’ll end as well as it started. Previous years always start off difficult, gradually becoming all right in the middle and segues back to its original craptastic start. But I’m happy to report that I will be ending the year with a small bang, nothing fancy, just a feeling of triumph that I managed to get through 2006 without much fuss.

This year is extra special because of these things:


I finally pried myself from all the Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman stuff and decided that I needed to expand my reading. I am slowly venturing to other genres, in particular religion and world issues, and the occasional mystery/thriller. You will never see me reading a book with Fabio on the cover however. I’d rather put my head in a blender. With peas.

Football (Soccer for you people who think that running with a ball in your arms constitutes football)

I’ve always liked football. I used to follow the local league, back in the day when they actually could kick a ball without it having a soporific effect like it is currently. It was reignited with the World Cup in Germany. I supported Germany for the simple and rather bizarre reason that my favourite Teutonic band at that time was Rammstein. I actually stayed up, got up at obscene hours and jumped for joy when the Germans won. Italy may have won but Germany has left me with a new-found fervour and a generous serving of sleep depravation.

Manchester United friggin’ rule by the way.


I saw Slayer in October. My journey as a metalhead is complete as far as I’m concerned. I managed to headbang with a bunch of like-minded bespectacled metalheads, suffering the pain of stomping my feet on the cold, hard floor and swinging my head as though it was a windmill made the RM300 I paid for the ticket the best RM300 I ever spent. And I finally got myself some guitar lessons after mulling it for almost forever. Marc Antoine better watch out, give me a couple of years and I’ll be playing in sold-out arenas. But in the mean time, can someone tune my guitar? And here's my top 10 metal songs of 2006!


Bin Siew and Irwin, if you’re both reading this, thanks for all the late night (and morning) jaunts to the beautiful lake in Putrajaya and all over Kuala Lumpur. Let’s not forget to do that again before we get too old to drink Red Bull, eat instant noodles on the way, the ever useful mosquito repellents (cigarettes) and having the best chats ever in the history of the world. All of that under the brilliant night sky and a view that was magnificent and awe-inspiring that made our contemplations, dissertations and figuring out life’s conundrums some of the best times of my life. And here's a holler to Fill who proved that it is possible to go fast in a Kancil and headbang to Fear Factory while looking like complete dolts. Precious days those were.

And probably the most important thing that happened to me:

My never-ending quest to better myself as a human being and most importantly, a better Chris. I feel more alive, like I’ve broken down the walls that kept me from being me. I may give in to histrionics once in a while and embark on warped ramblings about the perplexing nature of rabbits and their twitchy noses but the Chris that’s now in this world is definitely way better than the Chris last year. And he’ll keep getting better. I really hope so. (What’s with all the talking in the 3rd person anyway?)

So as the year draws to an end, I can only hope for 2007 to equal 2006, because honestly, it was a blast and if it does top 2006, I’ll be sure to tell you all about it.

Gute Nacht und Gutes Glück.

PS: I dedicate this to all my friends, family and especially to anyone who reads this. Have a blessed new year and I shall see you when I see you. 2007 here I come!

Tuesday, 19 December 2006

I I yai yai!

How this shindig works:

Each player of this game starts with the “6 weird things about you”. People who get tagged need to write a blog of their own 6 weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave a comment that says ‘you are tagged’ in their comments and tell them to read your blog. I was tagged by the venerable Lia and effervescent Syar.

Since I’m still working on a blog post on food, I’ll do a “6 weird things I do” instead.

  1. Well, maybe just one will do. I love onions, be it raw (think Mel Gibson in that Lethal Weapon movie where he was naked for most of the time) or overcooked.
  2. I don’t read lyrics. Firstly, it’s because I don’t want to get the booklet all smudged therefore after a while it will develop fungal growth which really sucks. Secondly, and rather embarrassingly, I can’t seem to understand them.
  3. I can speed-read. Unfortunately, I can’t seem to be able to recall what I’ve read so it makes my speed-read feat pretty much useless.
  4. I can spend hours looking at books and music CDs. I will pace up and down, flip and flap a book, then not buy anything.
  5. I am incredibly parsimonious. I will walk for hours, visit countless stores, heckle and query till the cows come home just to find the best price for anything. I’m like Chris Rock’s father in Everybody Hates Chris. I know the price for a lot of things.
  6. Whenever I’m by myself, I tend to walk very fast. I will actually scan the area I’m traversing, and pick out the best route. When I’m driving by myself however, I like to go as slow as possible.

I had to really think of things that I haven’t already told you guys. It was fun, and I think it’s why I’m a sucker for memes, I feel like a little boy with a set of Legos.

Gute Nacht und Gutes Glück.

PS: Since I can't really think of anyone to bequeath this meme to I'll just wish anyone who wants to do this all the best. Till then, have a nice week!

Wednesday, 13 December 2006

I’m fashion road-kill

When I was younger (think much spikier hair, window-pane-like glasses, chubbier cheeks that resemble a hungry Canadian squirrel and much, much bigger trousers), fashion was something as alien as a pink loving man. It was a lot simpler then. Men and fashion were not synonymous. The only thing that remained the same was how bad men were when it came to differentiating cotton and snake leather. But now it seems that men are coming out of the other closet, pun intended, and at this moment are embracing the joys of faux chic couture.

My philosophy for buying clothes when I was a wee lad was very simple: Expensive = Quality. Of course, growing up then for me meant that I was to board a manically driven minibus to good ole Globe Silk Store (which is now known as That Cheap Cheap Place) for the latest RM5 (!) tee which at that time was pretty expensive for a strapping young lad like me. And they weren’t in my favourite colours too.

I would say my fashion sense is that of an octopus trying to wear a one-armed sweater. If the fashion police did exist, I would be on their Most Wanted list for ever. I do all right in the “getting the right coloured tee along with the trousers” department but either than that I’m absolutely horrible in trying something new. Take for instance, East India clothes. I like their line because it’s simple yet classy. But for the life of me, I don’t think I could ever slip on a shirt made from the finest coconut husk from Panama and trousers made from cotton indigenous to the plains of Mongolia.

I want to look Bohemian, not try and be one.

There’s an emerging trend in the male front and that is to wear light colours, which is more popularly known as pastel in the couture world. I call it girly. Flail your arms wildly. Strike me down with a bastard sword, go ahead. I don’t care. I’m very happy wearing a collared tee, three-quarter trousers and slip on my trusty Camel sandals. And if I feel like being inconspicuous, I’ll put on a cap. Simple, no? You can call me old-fashion when it comes to fashion, but I know I’m only conforming to my own personal style god.

Who you may ask? Why, Me of course you silly kitten!

As I was growing up and being constantly fed with images of cool people with cool clothes only made me wish I was rich enough to buy one of them. But then I realised it’s not worth it. Personally, splurging on clothes is a mini sin for me. Take this for example: Would a guy who doesn’t really give a damn about his clothes buy a Timberland t-shirt that costs RM400 just because he can afford it? Or would he pay a visit to good ole Petaling Street and get the same t-shirt but with the label spelt as Timbarbland instead? I don’t get fashion but I do get the people. They’re nutters.

So, what is the true definition of being stylish? Is it as simple as being you? So which is right, do the clothes make a person or does the person make the clothes? Whatever it is I’m still wearing my sandals and faux Hawaiian shirt. I look quite Bohemian.

Gute Nacht und Gutes Glück.

PS: I don’t get Malaysian fashion shows. A good number of people don’t even know how to pronounce some of the labels let alone wanting to buy them. FCUK anyone?

Monday, 4 December 2006

I don’t know why but I feel compelled to write this

caveat – This is a “What I Did Today” kind of a blog.

I didn’t want to go. I thought it would be mind-numbingly boring with old men in suits far too big for their shrunken shoulders would come up to me and inquire, “Are you in search of a house? Then come right over here. Yee haw!”

Property showcases, to me, are one of the dreariest things one can do on a Saturday afternoon. Besides having to take your Aunt Mildred to the dairy farm of course. The layout was awful. It created sort of a mini congestion of bodies. People would bump into me while looking at pretty pictures that everyone knows for a fact doesn’t translate to real life. They would peer into see-through glass, with their noses dangerously inches away from the display. A person would come up to me and ask, “Hello, are you looking for a house?” The activity itself isn’t much to talk about but considering that I looked like a Chinaman who just got his gold necklace from the nearby jewellery store with his RM5 sandals I thought I would be safe from these wretched salespeople with eager smiles. Wrong I was. One after another, a smiling model with rather nice curves would greet and pass me brochures with far too many words for someone who hasn’t had his coffee.

In another hall of the convention centre, there was an education fair dubiously called FACON (I said this aloud in puzzlement and a lot of frowns stared back at me), which featured a mix of local and international institutes of higher learning all vying for attention of kids who have just finished their exams and wish to further their studies. I thought what the heck, maybe when I’m more stable in life I’ll take up another degree. I’ve been to my fair share of education fairs in my younger days and people would drag me off to a little table with high chairs telling you that their course is the best in the world. Now that I’m older and considerably wiser I don’t give a damn. I managed to stump quite a number of councillors that day with my quick observations and charmed them (them being women, the men—pfft) with witty one-liners.

It turned out to be one of the most pleasant pleasantly surprised days. It all boils down to, naturally, a girl. She was pretty all right: nose small and angular, a hearty laugh that would make any grandmother be proud of, and possessed something that to me, is the defining factor when it comes to women I’m attracted to—that special something. Yes, yes, I can see you guys and lovely gals slightly bemused and irritated even that I’m on one of my illustrious loopy ramblings. I apologise but let’s continue the story. I initially was approached by this tiny human being, a girl who reached my chest and smiled at my navel. I inquired her about the availability of Mass Communication in her college. A smile at my navel again and she led me to the obligatory tiny table with high chairs. I waited for a bit and soaked in the noisy ambience, remembering the days when I was a wee lad fresh from secondary school. Damn I was dorky. Then she arrived.

It’s these little trinkets of niceness that makes me grateful to be alive and the person that I am. It’s moments like these that transcend all the ugly happenings in my life, giving that much needed rush of joyfulness. I won’t go further simply because it’s one of those one-time moments where the more I try to remember it, the faster I forget the experience and I don’t want that. The mind is a terrible thing to play with.

The thing that drives me mad is always the post-meeting analysis whereby I would stare into nothingness for minutes on end, flagellating my poor mind with the whip of remembrance. I would talk to myself, curse myself, soothe myself, and then sigh, sigh the sigh of someone who wished he could have just a little bit more. A smidgen. A tiny speck. The tiniest of morsels. Just so that I can close my mind and remember what it was like.

I’m so there at the next FACON.

Gute Nacht und Gutes Glück.

PS: Good things happen at the most unsuspecting times. I would like to have more of these.

Other Blog updated!

Monday, 27 November 2006

Punctuality and the people who keep screwing it

I took a quick look at my watch. It’s almost 1 p.m. Traffic today is insanely busy and there’s no apparent reason—I see no cars on the side with smashed bodies and teenagers who just got their licence calling their parents nor do I see a motionless body on the ground covered with newspaper with its feet sticking out. I do however notice that there are many women drivers on the road. This can only mean one thing: The end of my sanity!

I’m late!

An event like this is common for all city folk. Time just flies by when you seem to be stuck in traffic most of the time. No wonder people are stressed out! And are likely to go on a rampage involving machetes and lots of dead rabbits!

Every single morning during my college days was always frustrating. I’d get up early to have my breakfast and leave just before traffic started to crawl slower than an overweight caterpillar. By the time I reached my friend’s place I would park my car, walk to 7-Eleven to get a newspaper and maybe a doughnut. Then I’d wait. And wait. And wait. At the very least—a good 20 minutes later—my friend would finally come down, put on his shoes and off we go. Even though college was theoretically only 20 minutes away from his place, we had to leave at least a good hour to be just in time for class. If I was going to college by myself, I would leave much earlier just to avoid the cursed jam. I’d rather be an hour earlier than to spend the same time inching my way, cursing at all and sundry, and wait for the rest to come. Till this day this friend of mine is still late for most engagements.

If there’s one thing my father thought me well was that it’s better to be early than to be late. It’s something that has shaped my personality. I’m a planner; that is I will set my alarm, pick out the clothes I want to wear and plot the route I’m going to take. All this will be done the night before, so that I don’t need to rush and put my underwear on my head instead. I estimate the time it takes for me to get there and punch it into my internal hard drive and whoosh! I’m there. It is one custom I have no qualms with and is the reason why I am always the earliest. Or one of the earliest, depending on the nature of the meeting of course.

When someone is late we call it a Malaysian thing. I call it being inconsiderate and discourteous. We’re too much of a laidback people I guess. We take things for granted because we have this mentality of since it’s there, it’s there. There’s no need to rush things. Take it easy some may say. And yet these are the same people who are chronically late for everything and the one time you’re slightly behind for a very important engagement, they’ll push the blame unto you in an instant.

Life isn’t always fair but it can make you very pissed indeed.

When my friends are late, especially the usual suspects, we just shrug it off and say, “That’s him all right. The late bastard strikes again.” But when I’m late, even by a mere nanosecond, they say, “That fucker is late!” I am that bad. Where does this blatant apathy stem from? When you’re running late, I’d very much appreciate it if you could tell me. A simple SMS with the words, “Am late,” would more than suffice. It’s the thought that counts after all.

Tardiness is a national disease and while a cure for it exists, none are bothered to take it. Something about not having enough time…

Gute Nacht und Gutes Glück.

PS: I try my best to be not late due to circumstance of any sort. If I am late, that means I did it on purpose. Really.

My other blog is updated! Go! Thanks!

Monday, 20 November 2006

Try not to step on my head too much. I may bite. And devour your soul you worthless tadpole!

One day in a shopping mall located in one of the capital’s trendiest suburban neighbourhoods, I had a feeling that that day would be a great day. I saw a couple of girls checking me out (it could have well been curry on my cheek, I was too engrossed in my own vanity) as I was about to get across to the adjoining mall. Before anything else, I went straight towards the loo (I knew I shouldn’t drink too much green tea), and in the interconnecting bridge I had to pass by a group of salespeople or as I like to call them, Ambushers of Wanton Insensitivity (AWI). You see, getting pass these people is like going through a mediaeval gauntlet to retrieve the Sacred Chalice of Paramount BraveryTM. And just my luck I had to encounter one of AWI’s most promising new knights. This was how the crossing of the gauntlet went:

(Me walking rather quickly, face slightly contorted as I forced my bladder to control its already bursting dam)
(Skinny boy with impish-looking features jumps out of nowhere)
Annoying Skinny Sheet (ASS): Hello! Do you have a minute?
(I smile, put up my right hand to indicate that sorry, I’m not interested in whatever it is you’re selling or peddling)
ASS: Are you in a rush?
Me: Um. Yeah. Sorry.
ASS: (in a very sarcastic tone) Fantastic! That’s so fantastic of you!

Of course the above retelling seems a bit tepid. But picture it in your mind, summon the most aggravating voice you can and hopefully you’ll know what I went through. I don’t know why I didn’t go up to him and pound his skinny ass to the wall for such rudeness. I could understand such a treatment if I was being a complete asshole and didn’t acknowledge his existence but I wasn’t. He did it not only in front of other shoppers but also his seniors. I even smiled at him!

I know it’s a hard way to make ends meet, especially when you have to deal with idiotic and downright rude people, but that doesn’t you can treat me and people like me with disrespect just because you’ve been the receiving end one too many times. I could have been a person with violent anger pent up waiting to explode which would have provided some World’s Most Brutal Shopper moments. But thankfully, to him and myself (I don’t want to go to jail for beating a pugnacious salesperson), I’m not of that nature. My mom was the one who wanted to give him the smackdown.

Customer service in Malaysia is a myth I tell you.

Another incident where manners was of the utmost priority, my friend Fill and I were part of a land banking management firm. We had to call up people and beg (of course it wasn’t the on-my-knees pleading to give me 15-minutes of their time because after all, what’s 15-minutes compared to an opportunity? you name the place and time and I’ll be there!) them for a chance to showcase our service. Fill had the misfortune of using, oh blimey, a phone directory for his leads. Seeing him dial home numbers and getting his ear severed to its very tip for having the audacity and flagrancy to inform them of our product made for some uncomfortable silences. It’s difficult to commiserate with someone when you’re laughing hysterically at them.

Dealing with people is an art. Like art, sometimes blatant flicking here and there, a misconstrued stroke there and here, may not be the best thing to do. You have to be scrupulous and deliberate yet not to the point of being cold and brusque. Unfortunately, it’s an art only a select few know how. The rest just butcher it.

Gute Nacht und Gutes Glück.

PS: Quick question: What would you have done if you were in my sandals (I didn’t feel like wearing shoes that day)? I hope it’s something violent related. Till then, beware of the Ambushers of Wanton Insensitivity!

Friday, 10 November 2006

“No son, she’s gone to heaven for awhile. What’s that? Yes, you’ll see someday.”

I hate getting lost only to find out after 30 minutes of circling in the same area and in the pouring rain to find out actually, I wasn’t lost at all. If this were the Amazing Race I would have dragged someone to help me locate the elusive house. Turns out my uncle did give the correct directions, it was only the reverse of it. Left became right, straight became back, and I nearly gave up in the end. When I did finally arrive my aunties, uncles and cousins were all there and other relatives I knew I’ve seen them before but I couldn’t remember their names. The atmosphere was decidedly calm, laughter could be heard and one or two relatives still were slightly shell-shocked from the sudden departing. I’ve met the departed auntie a few times and all of the encounters were full of smiles and she saying “Wah, lu dah beser!” (Wow, you’ve grown!). And all this while I wondered who she was. She was my grandmother’s sister who makes her my mother’s auntie therefore she’s my great-aunt or something to that effect. As well as if you twice remove a certain uncle and further removing an auntie you’ll get my cousins.

Only in a Peranakan family will you hear a myriad of languages. Besides the usual English and our mother tongue, Baba Nyonya, there was Hokkien, Cantonese, Mandarin, Bahasa Melayu and even Tamil could be heard in one corner. The amazing thing is that you could speak a different language yet the whole family has this built-in translator of sorts in which you’ll be able to understand each other. I kept telling my grandmother that I have already eaten in English while she answered me in Baba Nyonya.

I asked my other auntie as to how she died. It seems that she was alone one day and fell awkwardly, landing on her back. Her son came to drop his son there, as usual, and the son came running out telling daddy that grandma is on the floor. When the ambulance arrived, she was declared dead. The little boy was oblivious to the crying and sombre faces surrounding him. He knows his grandma has passed on, yet he knows not what death means only that his dear grandma won’t be there anymore to take care of him, to feed him when he is hungry or to soothe him when he feels ill. But what he does know is that she is at a much better place and will look out for him, always.

The quiet murmurs of the Buddhist priests chanting could be heard amidst the hubbub of people catching up with each other. A short prayer performed by the priests and the immediate family members was done to appease her soul, and to wish her a safe journey into the exalted halls of those who have left their mortal shell. A cymbal rings and a light tap on the Chinese drum told us all that it was time to send the dearly departed mother to the heavens. As is customary in Buddhist tradition, the burning of effigies and paper doll deities signifies that her soul has been released from its earthly bounds. The burning paper ascends to the sky, the moon shining even brighter as though she was smiling at us, thanking us for being good sons and daughters.

As I approached the coffin, I said a small prayer, wishing her all the best in the afterlife. It was the least I could do for a woman who meant so much more to others. She looked calm and at peace. I think that was what she wanted, everyone to be happy and not be sad with her passing. I was about to leave and the little boy ran pass me, happy and laughing. I smiled and went home.

Gute Nacht und Gutes Glück.

PS: This post is dedicated to the memory and family members of EePoh. May her soul rest in peace.

Saturday, 4 November 2006

A man’s not a man when he doesn’t admit his wrongs

A man builds a mansion without the proper authorisation. This same man has a restaurant built on land that wasn’t even his to begin with. It belongs to the government. His family members have been nominated to hold positions of power in the local municipality. This man has also failed to pay assessment fees for his own house—which is an understatement considering it’s now a palace—together with two other buildings under him. Other follies of his include backing a project that would have deprived people a place to have their walks, exercise and other healthy doings and breaching party ethics during political polls. Yet, this seemingly pompous and discourteous man has humble beginnings; he was a former railway gatekeeper and office boy. The Sultan of the state summons him, wanting to get to the bottom of this, but he informs the His Royal Highness he is ill from hypertension. This man was so ill apparently that he had to travel to another state and “recuperate” by celebrating a festivity ironically would no doubt increase his hypertension because of the sumptuous fare that would have greeted him and his family. He lies during a period where sins are severely frowned upon and simply ignores the same people he was entrusted to lead. So how do you respect a man who wears sunglasses when summoned to speak of his actions? You can’t deny the fact that he has done his part, and some good has come from it but going easy on him when a small time restaurateur had his extensions demolished almost immediately because he forgot to submit the proposal earlier on is akin to exonerating the now disgraced politician without even a trial to begin with.

Why do former leaders think it’s all right to berate and tarnish current leaders and do so without the merest hint of regret thinking they’re doing it because in their mind it’s the right thing to do? And I hate when they say, “It’s for their own good,” or “I’m doing this for the good of the people,” when it’s nothing more than a veneer to divert attention from their own insecurities. The people are grateful for what they have done. You could say that without such leadership the country wouldn’t be near where it is now. But it’s time for them to let go and let others lead for they have a job to do. What they need is teamwork, positivity and sometimes a pat on the back; they don’t need constant scrutiny and disparaging criticism. It’ll make the toughest of people even nervous. Let’s also admit that during their time they’ve made mistakes. No one is perfect, hello. It’s okay to admit them, but instead they choose the proud route, why should I admit my faults when I can point someone else’s?

The small people are always the first casualties simply because they have no power whatsoever when those who are above them, who often deign to do things for them, wield their magical wands with an air of extreme derision and smugness. It’s okay for the big guys to take 3 steps out of the line but if a petty person treads even half a step he’ll find himself the recipient of a cruel and senseless punishment. It’s also funny to note that people who speak about “upholding the law” and “no one is above the law” are the ones who flout them unflinchingly and sleep well at night when their actions have caused nothing but pain to those who have to bear the consequences.

Apologising and publicly repenting your actions means absolutely nothing when you don’t follow up by rebuilding your already destroyed image. It is never too late to admit your wrongs and trying your best to regain the respect and love lost. But if you’re going to hide yourself in a corner hoping that it will all go away only makes you a coward. It’s a far worse title for a person formerly held in high-esteem.

We all know that there are always two sides to a coin and he is after all still entitled to a fair trial. His backers and supporters will surely defend him till the end because there’s no other way and it doesn’t make sense if they were to turn around and say that “Oh yes, he pinched my bum once. Very rude indeed.” But when evidence is so against you the right thing to do would be to say sorry. It’s the first step only a real man can do redeem himself.

Gute Nacht und Gutes Glück.

PS: This is by no means a personal attack on any person or organisation of any kind. This is merely sentiments from a disgruntled citizen who’s had enough with double-standards and abuse of power. It’s time we stand up for us.

PPS: My other blog is updated! Check it out! Go on!

Sunday, 29 October 2006

Non-conformity in my inner self, only I guide my inner self!*

When I was but a wee lad, I always wanted to be like James Hetfield of Metallica. I copied the way he held his superb black ESP Explorer, stood the way he stood and tried to sound like how he sounded. I was about 15 and was steadily losing interest in all the Green Day clones and dreary rock bands (read: Creed). I was slowly being indoctrinated into a new music faith and I wanted to look the part, to be uber cool. So I had three-quarter pants and a chain that was actually a combination of a short wallet chain and one from my police cadet uniform which gave it a one of a kind look. It was ridiculous and radical. You could have chained a pit-bull with it. It screamed poseur but I didn’t care. I just wanted to look like my then idols.

I fell for the whole “wanting to fit in” stage of my teen life. I remember vividly that what I wanted whenever I saw anything on TV my dad would shoot me down with a resounding “No.” It echoed in my head, the No bouncing off the walls of my sanity. Thankfully I was shot down so frequently I just gave up in the end. Otherwise I think I would have turned out a depressed child wanting a strawberry lollipop and have an imaginary friend named Bob who likes kittens. Preferably dead.

It’s a common occurrence for parents to send their young children to one tuition centre to another, one music class to another and having them play sports whenever their little feet can. Parents are in a way, trying to compete with each other to see who can go all the way to outdo each other. Whatever happened to friendly competition?

For awhile when I was in college I used to envy my friends who had the latest things. You name it, they had it. I just couldn’t figure out where the heck they got so much money. One would have the latest mobile phone, another would be wearing a pair Dockers I always wanted (the best trousers ever), or the newest whatever. They were so cool and I was so bland that I got envious. Try as I might I couldn’t be like them. Yet again, thankfully I got so downtrodden, and so sick of all the bullshit media feeding me images of what is cool, that at last I said, fuck this, I’m going to get people to try and fit with my style.

So what does conform mean anyway? According to the dictionary, it means “to comply with accepted standards, rules or customs.” By that definition then a good percentage of the planet’s population is a conformist of some form or another. Conforming to the norm while everyone wants to go against it is like going against the tide, you’ll tire yourself quicker and you’ll eventually drown. It is an inevitable part of life. We are all guilty of conforming. By not conforming to the norm we are in reality conforming to another norm. Think about, if you’re against guys who wear pink and you choose to wear black, then I’m afraid to say that you’re part of the anti-conformity conformists of the Black Brigade. You’re either a part of the bandwagon of commonness or you’re a pedestrian that goes against traffic just to see if the cars would swerve to avoid you.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I would like to buy that pair of Nike shoes. People look cool wearing it.

* = refers to Brazilian thrash metal legends, Sepultura with their classic Inner Self.

Gute Nacht und Gutes Glück.

PS: I feel the need to apologise. I feel that I didn’t make myself as clear as I had hoped. Some parts in this post I feel that I’m slightly off tangent with regards to the topic and for that I apologise.

PPS: Since we’re on the subject of conformity, I’ve decided to *GASP!* convert Whacker Inc into *GASP!* Blogger Beta!

PPPS: And since I felt like doing it, here's my new blog where I give my 2.666 cents worth of reviews from books to music to even toiletry products.

Whacker Inc's Reviews and Ughs

Thursday, 26 October 2006

S L A Y E R – Live in Singapore

When I first heard that Slayer was going to play in Singapore, I thought no fucking way. Last year when Malaysia hosted German legends Kreator I just couldn’t believe it either. It was only when I entered the hall did I finally believe that I was going to witness a real metal concert! But with Slayer it was totally different. I was alone for the best part of the 2 hours I waited. I didn’t mind really. And something happened which doesn’t happen often, I felt short and small. Some of the guys there were huge. There were the ubiquitous fans screaming and clamouring.

The hall was divided into three sections: those who paid $65, $85 and $125. Since I had the $125 ticket I was let in first. As I was walking into the hall my heart started to pound rapidly and I had to calm myself down lest I start to headbang even before anything started. I had actually positioned myself at a very strategic spot; it enabled me to see all the members but at a price. Being smack in the middle means you’re in primo moshpit territory. I valued my well-being so I decided to move back. I came to see Slayer perform and not be crushed by rabid fans. It was almost 8 p.m. and my friend, Brandy, was running late. Thankfully he arrived in time.

The atmosphere in the Max Pavilion was electric. The crowd were chanting “Slayer!” at every opportunity they got. The hall all of a sudden became dark. Then it was bathed in blood red light, and the opening riff of South of Heaven started resonating. A sense of eerie danger and intrinsic madness was building up and when Dave Lombardo blasted the cymbals, Slayer signalled their arrival. I remember clearly that I didn’t intend to sing the words but I did. Everyone sang at the top of their lungs. As the song ended it segued into Silent Scream, arguably one of Slayer’s most brutal songs. When Lombardo did his double bass run I could feel a rumble in my um, family jewels, so I shook the feeling off and started headbanging wildly with my short hair. When Tom Araya asked us if we were ready for war, I was sent straight into metal heaven. War Ensemble is probably my favourite Slayer song of all-time and they delivered a blistering rendition. I told Brandy that my metal soul is now complete. I could die now a happy boy.

I swore to myself that I would never enter the moshpit. I’ve always maintained that the pit was for reckless and stupid kids. I became a reckless and stupid kid when Dead Skin Mask was played. By the time Raining Blood arrived, I took off my glasses, and got ready to get into the pit. Brandy even lost his mind then as we started to mosh together with his friends. I could feel my neck started to ache, my legs slightly heavy from the stomping, my throat a parched landscape yet I was empowered with a primal urge that scared me even. I was running purely on adrenaline and feeding off the crowd’s energy. With my initial fear of thinking that Angel of Death might be axed from the set, it was put to rest instantly when the unmistakeable riff reverberated in the hall and in my head. Setting aside my decorous inhibitions, I started slamming into people with reckless abandonment. In hindsight what I did was gosh darn immature and silly. I could have been hurt or worse. But it was a Slayer concert after all, if I had wanted to boogie and gyrate I would have gone to a Michael Buble gig (he’s great by the way). Even Brandy later confessed that he too didn’t want to be part of the moshpit. By the time the opening riff of Angel of Death kicked-in everyone and I mean, everyone, went berserk. Nobody was spared. It was either you were part of the moshpit or you stood way back. It’s also funny to note as I was headbanging I was also taking down the songs in my mobile phone and snapping pictures away. Araya (he’s like Osama and Santa Claus if they had a love child), Jeff Hanneman (he’s the man yo) and Kerry King (who is quite short) were very obliging with their headbanging. But it all wasn’t good…

Some Bum Notes:

  • Hanneman’s solos were not audible enough. I’m not too sure whether it was my being more to the right which also happened to be King’s side.
  • There were some who actually stood and smiled. This ain’t a friggin’ Linkin Park or Il Divo concert. It’s a Slayer concert. At least headbang a little!
  • The brevity of the show. It started half an hour late and stopped at 10 p.m. sharp. They didn’t take many breaks in between songs so it wasn’t that bad. Though another 15 minutes would have been greatly appreciated nonetheless.
  • They didn’t play some of their more enlightening songs due to the restrictions imposed by the authorities. Araya was apologetic which softened the blow somewhat.
  • The girls, some of them rather attractive (albeit they had weird makeup on and horrible fashion sense), were clearly there because they’re boyfriends were.

All in all, it was the best concert I’ve ever been to, which is a stretch since I’ve only been to 2 thus far. I had an awesome time. I’m so looking forward to the next time I see Slayer if I ever do get the chance. Till then, keep on slaying all!

Chris is signing off. For now…

PS: To the people I moshed with, sorry I banged you guys.

Sunday, 15 October 2006

Have I or have I not? I think I have. Um, I don’t think I have. Ugh.

After what seemed like the longest time I finally found a parking spot. It’s a bit far from the entrance but what the heck, the walk would do me good. I get out of the car and lock it. I walk about 5 meters and realised I didn’t lock the car. I walk back, cursing myself. It’s locked. Shit. I walk to the entrance again and I feel a sense of anxiety crawling up in me. I run back to the car to check that I have indeed locked the car. It was still locked. Satisfied I tell, no, I force myself to remember that I have locked the car already and there’s no need to go check again. The last time I did that the car-wash employees gave me queer looks.

We all have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). It’s just that ours is not as extreme as others and we don’t need to go to therapy for it. The feeling you get when OCD kicks in is not pleasant. It really is an itch that can’t be merely scratched, it has to be thoroughly dispatched off. For people who have it mildly they have another word for it, Habit. Like for instance, I normally start off my day with a song, preferably something that is upbeat and galvanizes me to carpe diem. It’s something that I’ll do but isn’t a must. If it was OCD, the minute I’d get up from sleep I’d have to run over to my stereo and start blasting music. That would be bad.

Here are other OCD quirks of mine:

  • I have to wear a wristwatch whenever I go out. Even if it’s to the sundry shop that’s about 2 minutes away I’ll still wear it.
  • I can’t litter away. I have to find a rubbish bin to dispose of it.
  • I have to put my money in order; RM1 in the front, RM5 second and so on. And they all have to be face forward.
  • I tend to air guitar at the most unfortunate times. Sometimes a song just pops into my head and triggers an automatic response where my right hand will curl and goes into an all out riff jam. Many think I’m a pervert since my hand is ahem, positioned, at an angle.
  • I tend to headbang as well. Though even I have to admit it’s a bit scarier since people might assume I’m having an anaphylactic shock.
  • I shake my legs quite often. It’s not because I’m a sufferer of Shaky Stevens Leg Syndrome, but rather the fact that a song randomly pops in my head I’ll immediately do a drumbeat. And if I’m really into the song, in tandem, my hands will shake and bang an imaginary drumkit too.
  • The way I arrange my CD collection would make a systematic person cry inconsolably. It’s not in alphabetical order, it is however, in order of “greatness”, which translates to the CDs I frequently listen to.
  • I have to read with music on.
  • My blog posts have to be written in more than 500 words. Only on extenuating circumstances will I be forced to blog with a post of shorter length.
  • I normally proofread my posts as I go along. I can’t do it when I’m done otherwise it won’t be finished.

I think that just about does it. There are probably a bit more but I’ll have to proofread which means this won’t get posted at all. These quirks are the reason why there’s only one me and you. Of course, there’s bound to be others with the same symptoms as the above but that would be coincidence. Weirdness afflicts anyone, anywhere.

Chris is signing off. For now… He thinks… He hopes… He… BAH!

PS: This is sort of a meme, so I tag Syar, Mawar and whoever who wants to tell us about your OCD quirks. Please do check out Maria’s blog as she has hers with some pretty interesting quirks.

Saturday, 7 October 2006

Going solo

Coldplay. Franz Ferdinand. Keane. The Killers. The This and That. Snow Patrol. Razorlight. The Argh...!

What do the above have in common? Apart from being the forerunners of the new wave of “rock” (I could debate this all day, but for the sake of not wanting to have a protracted and possible rancorous war of words with the exponents, I’ll keep my sentiments to myself (for not the time being of course)) these bands are currently ala mode, with kids getting into them because of their out of this world catchiness, unbelievably varied hooks and singers with distinct voices.

And most importantly, these bands do not subscribe to the Church of the Solo.

What is a solo anyway? And what’s the difference between a solo and a lead? Some say it’s the same thing. People like me however, know what they both mean to a song. As a non-musician trying to explain it to another non-musician, it’s been a difficult task to elucidate because the minute I hear a song with the above components I immediately recognize which is which. This ability to distinguish solos and leads didn’t come easily. Try 6 years of almost non-stop listens. It’s an ongoing education you could say.

Of course solos are meant to be indulgent! They are called a solo, duh! Like any good recipe, a solo can be used to spice up a song or to give it a shot of much needed adrenaline. Bands who say that solos are archaic are whiners who can’t play more than 3 chords. But what do I know right? I’m an old school guy who appreciates good song-writing. What I don’t like is when people talk claptrap (this is a cool word) about things they think they know.

Can you imagine Deep Purple without Ritchie Blackmore’s solos? Iron Maiden without theirs? Judas Priest without the solo duels? Or even The Beatles who normally didn’t incorporate them into most of their song but when they did it matched perfectly to much effect and create masterpieces of utter brilliance. Soloing is an art. You have good ones and you have bad ones. That’s why I listen to the good ones!

So here is Chris’s Top 5 Guitar Solos of All Time (because I couldn’t think of 10):

Metallica – Fade to Black

Without a doubt Kirk Hammett’s finest hour. As we all know, the former Exodus shredder was tutored by the one and only Joe Satriani. I guess Hammett wouldn’t be the guitarist that he his without the guidance from Satch. Metallica’s first “ballad” of sorts came out of nowhere, proving that the former thrash gods could write a moving, brooding and ultimately one of the finest metal songs of all time. All this is largely thanks to Hammett’s solo which extends the song’s meaning of wanting to end it all to its glorious climax.

Dream Theater – Voices

When 5 musicians came together, 3 of them with their Berkeley background the obvious was that each member were masters of their chosen instrument. The song is monstrous; a 10 minute marathon of epic proportions culminating with quite possibly John Petrucci’s best solo of his career. It is sweeping, powerful and it makes me wish I hadn’t spent my money last year when they came to Singapore to perform. I feel a need for a tissue. Lots of it. NOW!

Nevermore – The River Dragon Has Come

This is seven-string wizardry at its finest. Jeff Loomis’s guitar tone remains one of the heaviest in metal today. He has an uncanny ability to know when and where which technique is going to sound great and this song has it all. From tapping to all out goreng-ing (Malaysian for tearing it out) I wet myself every time I hear it. Gross but true.

Whitesnake – Sailing Ships

A lot of fans give this album the track is from tonnes of flak because of one guitar virtuoso’s approach to the solos and melodies. It was odd to say the least. But nothing in this world can take away Steve Vai’s solo for this song. On one side it’s Vai at his Vai-est and the other is brilliantly taken like the best Manchester United goal (you heard me!).

Megadeth – Holy Wars... The Punishment Due

For years I’ve hated Dave Mustaine because of my then blind and undying allegiance to Metallica. And his vocal delivery remains one of the most atrocious in the history of thrash metal. But nothing, and I mean, nothing, can take away from the fact that his solo right after Marty Friedman’s own blistering piece still captures me off-guard with its technicality and awesomeness.

I have to make this clear yet again, I despise the current crop of bands that play under the banner of rock. But to each his own and whatever floats your boat. As for me, my boat is about to play some of old school rock.

Chris is signing off. For now…

PS: The only band with ‘The’ in their name I like is The Darkness. Their second album tanked big time though.

Wednesday, 27 September 2006

Better to look smarter than you really are

I get this call at about 3 p.m. and my train of thought suddenly comes to an abrupt halt as I wonder who would call me. The number is unknown to me. It could be the human-resource manager calling me for a job interview. Whoopee! I answer the call, on the other side this girl says Hello and introduces herself. I caught neither her name nor where she was calling from. Disappointed but not wanting to sound like an ungrateful sod, I greet her back. She says this call is in regards of a survey she’s conducting. It’s about a certain drink. She then proceeds to rattle question after question regarding when was the last time I bought Red Bull, would I buy it in the future, do I like to travel, do I play sports and finally what’s my age. I answer her questions, some in my trademark sarcastic tone, and by the end of it she says that if my “answers” are satisfactory then her colleagues will call me back. All right, I said, Goodbye was her response and the call ends.

So what could be possibly wrong? For starters, what the hell did I just go through? Was it a genuine survey to see if I liked isotonic drinks or was it a scam to acquire my personal details for an insidious plot? The questions didn’t make much sense. To what end is all of this? I knew I smelled something fishy when she asked whether or not I liked clubbing. I just couldn’t determine what type of fish.

But I’m more angry…make that furious at myself. I may sound confident and sometimes brusque in my replies but in actuality I’m pretty much hopeless when it comes to talking to people on the phone. All the things that I know are wrong, I commit them. All the no-nos become do-dos. I can’t help it, I know what I am about to say is wrong and might incriminate me but my mouth is faster than my brain. I should have questioned her back, like where did she acquire my name and my number, the legitimacy of her company, is she still available and so on. We all know how people are getting conned into revealing their personal details and I think I’m smarter than these poor souls. But that call apparently proved that I am not as smart as I thought I was.

Sometimes all it takes is for someone to speak in a nice tone and you might be hooked before you can say “Punk’d!” The male mind is probably the easiest to manipulate. Humans are highly visual creatures and men are attracted to all things shiny and pretty like male insects to pheromones. You see roadshows of any kind and you’ll see girls in very short skirts and tight tops revealing a hint of cleavage is enough to make men drop their brains and act like cavemen. Let’s face it, sex appeal sells and together with male stupidity and gullibility makes for a very potent combination and one with remarkable results.

Maybe it’s because I’m an honest guy. I’m also the kind that wants to get this kind of thing over ASAP and I hardly stop to formulate my answers thoughtfully. Every single time this happens, I bang my head on the table very hard, call myself stupid and solemnly vow to never repeat the mistakes. Till the next time, I’ll be ready. I hope.

Chris is signing off. For now…

PS: Never read H.P. Lovecraft at night.

Friday, 22 September 2006

Perhaps Love? Perhaps NOT!

What do 15 dismal and senseless men and 3 gorgeous women have in common? A new show on TV that is. The premise is simple enough: out of a thousand or so desperate males, 15 of the best that represent desperation in all its shameful glory “compete” with each other to win the hearts of 3 belles who could operate an airplane faster than the 15 can dish out an omelette.

Are the guys worthy? Are the girls worth it? Is this a game or is it something more? And who the hell wants to eat Cornetto ice-cream for a whole year? People are oh so gullible. They’ll do everything it takes to win. This is exploitation at its finest and the players have not a clue as to what they’ve gotten themselves into.

You may wonder, why am I so angry over a show? After all, I’m not related to any of the contestants. I didn’t audition for the part so I have no reason to be jealous. Two reasons, first is because I find the guys so boring, predictable, and abysmal in their wanting to look and sound so cool that they’re overlooking the fact that these 3 girls are smart, confident, level-headed, sassy and sexy that it pains me deeply to see them and their actions. Secondly, I’m angry because I knew I should’ve entered the show. Damn. All right, seriously, reason number two is because I feel that love isn’t game. I don’t what’s gotten into me lately but I’ve become rather craggy when it comes to the game of love.

It was only last week when I saw my old college friends during convocation. It was great to see them after so long. We chatted, we hugged and asked are you working and how is your pay? Standard talk. When it came to a particular guy friend of mine, Copacabana, when Fill told me his girlfriend was quite pretty I said, “Okay, let’s go see.” After 10 seconds I realized, what the…? Girlfriend? Copacabana? Huh? Fill gave me a wry and pulled me into the hall. True enough, there he was with his pretty girl and after exchanging pleasantries we were off to stalk more girls. It was only last year that Copacabana and I were somehow “competing” for this girl, Lewinsky. We never did say it out loud but it was a tacit agreement, look at me and I’ll whack you if you get her. Sad to say, neither of us got her. Then not long after, Copacabana went after another girl, Yawnster, who was also pursued by none other than Fill.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that 99% of the time I’m very glad that my money is all mine to spend, but when the 1% does happen, I do wish I had a special someone to share it with. Gosh, I sound like an emotional turd. It must be all the girly shows I’ve been watching. Someone please STOP ME!

Which brings me to my final questions, would have I entered? Would I even dare to show my face on TV, battle with 14 other shameless guys, put on a fake smile every time the camera is in front of me and eventually win the hearts of one the girls? Call me old-fashion, but I’ll find love the good ole way.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I feel like eating a Cornetto ice-cream.

Chris is signing off. For now…

PS: To the boy who said “There’s not enough time la,” in regards to speed dating, you are one stupid fella.

Thursday, 21 September 2006

The Chris Reviews

This year’s rock scene is pretty much boring. In terms of new bands that is. In its place however the world bore witness to the emergence of the Men Who Sound Like Women Only Much, Much Worse. Ever since Coldplay emerged with their “it is okay to sing like a lugubrious tit with highly depressing lyrics” together with their piano driven drivel, it seems that being a loser can make you an instant champion in the hearts of the similarly maudlin. Then came the likes of Jason Mraz, Daniel Powter, and Bo Bice who play sappy one-hit wonders and are now nowhere to be seen. But no-one comes close to the champion of the sad people, James Blunt. I swear if I hear You’re Beautiful again I’m going to bash my head with a guitar and use the strings to strangle myself. Which is why I decided to check out 3 of the best bands ever to walk this green Earth and their latest offerings.

Here is Chris’s Rockin’ Reviews:

Audioslave – Revelations

When I first heard that they’re going to release a new album I was like, didn’t the new come out already? Blimey, I was stuck in the past for this year is 2006! Forgetfulness aside, Audioslave delivers a much worthy follow up to their eponymous sophomore effort. The best way to describe this album is mature. The first two albums didn’t have the longevity or the staying power. I’ll listen to their albums day after day and in an instant I’ll put it down and never listen to it again. However this album doesn’t fall into that category. It’s certainly their strongest and most political to date. They’ve also turned up the funk on this, all the way to 11. At times it’s like 70’s funk but with much heavier rock riffs something the anathema entity that is Red Hot Chilli Peppers can’t seem to achieve (I blame the singer of theirs). The lyrics are scathing and the delivery just as harsh as they slam Bush for the war and the lack of help when Katrina struck New Orleans. Two word review: Highly recommended.

Iron Maiden – A Matter of Life and Death

I am not a Maiden fan. While these English blokes have influenced every single frickin’ metal and rock band there is, I never became a fan. I like most of their “hits” but I didn’t really consider getting their back catalogue. Their comeback album so to speak, Brave New World, churned out the crowd favourite, The Wicker Man. While the album was good at first, its initial delivery was quite boring. I got so bored with it I gave it away to my friend (you know who you are!). The follow up was Dance of Death. I didn’t even bother downloading it. So what made me even buy this? Aside from the fact that I had heard neither the single nor the other songs, it was the fact that it was priced low that I bought it. You can call it on a whim basically. So how does this album fare? In one word: Brilliant. I have to admit that it took repeated listens before I fully appreciated it. The guitars are as melodic as ever while the solos still blistering and Steve Harris’s basslines are still annoying. Bruce Dickinson still doesn’t know the meaning of mediocre and delivers yet another vocal masterpiece though they are parts where he sounds like he’s struggling. Three word review: Up the Irons!

Tool – 10,000 Days

This album is moody. One minute it is pensive the next it goes for the jugular. It has all the ingredients to drive anyone insane upon first listening to it. Tool is a band that doesn’t understand the word, easy. Instead you get an aural assault of the senses. Your brain can’t process anything else besides the music. The words drive into your skull like a lobotomy performed by a mad doctor. The only bad thing about this record is ironically the fact that it’s a Tool album. It’s that good. Some bands go through transitions. Some transcend. Tool is one of those rare bands. Critics may throw brickbats and try to say that Tool is merely “noise”, but I’ll show them the middle finger and walk off. Tool is by no means an easy band to get into but the rewards at the end makes it all worth while. One word review: Ohmylord.

And as a bonus:

Marc Antoine – Urban Gypsy

My Marc Antoine collection is now complete. I have all of his albums at last. 7 great works from a great guitarist. To me, the best description Antoine’s music was perfectly conveyed by famed saxophonist Chris Botti who said that Antoine’s music goes straight to the heart. He gets really technical only when the music requires it. I rarely listen to an album in its entire run. I tend to skip with most albums because I don’t want to get tired of it. But with Antoine albums I don’t have to do so. That’s the hallmark of an excellent musician. Few words review: Absolutely wonderful that even my sister likes him.

And there you have it. My 2 cents on this year’s rock and metal offerings. I know that it’s been a while since I’ve written something heavy and topical. I’ve a few partially written pieces but I just can’t seem to finish them. Is this some kind of blogger’s block? I for one hope it’s not extended any further. I do have fans to please! Till then, keep rockin’ people!

Chris is signing off. For now…

PS: The Audioslave review is for my good friend Fill, Maiden is for my running sifu Eirza, Tool is for all you beautiful people and Antoine is for Irwin, who has helped me burn holes in my wallet.

Monday, 18 September 2006

The Day Chris Wore A Silly Hat

Boy did I have fun. Serious! 17th September 2006 marked the day that finally I got to go up stage at a not-very-swanky hotel and receive my honours degree. And I had to wear robes that draped over me like an ominous shawl from the mediaeval days. What joyous fun.

It’s funny that I had left college for 9 months when memories of it are still swimming in my head as though it was only yesterday I kicked the CPU in class (it was an accident, I swear). Time passed by as I and my friends went about reminiscing the good and bad times, how intensely hot we were due to the silly heat trapping robes, and how working life sucks. Even when most of us hadn’t seen each other since college ended the camaraderie was as strong as ever.

So there you have it, after 9 months of waiting, cursing, registering and more cursing, my association with my former institution of higher learning (HAHAHA!) is now over. I am a proud holder of an honours degree of which I’m not that proud of. At the very least of it I feel that it enables me to knock on some employers’ door.

I honestly didn’t think I would have had a good time but I was proven wrong many times over. To all my friends, hopefully that wasn’t the last time we meet. Keep in touch everyone!

Chris is signing off. For now…

PS: I look like a dork I know. But that was on purpose. I swear.

Friday, 15 September 2006

Supernova are Superstupid

Firstly I have to congratulate Magni for delivering outstanding performances every week. He was by far the most old-school of them all and it showed in his overall outlook. Toby, I love his original song and some of the renditions that he did. I just dislike his nasally voice and honestly, he wouldn’t have suited them anyway. Dilana was a disappointment and that’s all I can say.

Lukas is one of the most conceited human beings to ever wield a microphone. There’s no denying that the diminutive Canadian has talent to a certain degree (he has after all, hoodwinked Supernova and the people who voted for him. That’s talent) but his arrogance coupled with the fact that he has the eloquence of a child in need of a massive smack to the face just makes me pissed. I’m also sad because people are equating that attitude and having a certain look is what makes rock stars. Sad people you all are. Just look at all the women who clamour about stage, they have the look that they just want to get laid by Tommy Lee who by the way acted like he had difficulty in coming up with meaningful comments thus resorted to the old and tired phrase of “You’re so awesome”. Thank God it’s all over now. Gilby surprised me. I have never heard his name prior to this. Of course the mere mention of Guns & Roses only conjures two names, Slash and Axl Rose, so it’s not surprising that he isn’t as famous. I would have thought that him being more on the old-school wagon he would have dismissed the fag that is Lukas who is about as rock as Click Five. Clearly I was mistaken. Of all the contestants, Lukas is the only one who did not improve. He obstinately continued with his singing style even though you can hardly call it singing in the first place.

Lukas is in essence, an emo singer rather than a rocker. He has the look, the sound and the lyrics for it. Besides Kiss, makeup in rock is just plain silly. Eye-liner is not rock. Wearing sparkly clothes is not rock. Singing like a constipated person who badly needs a dump is not rock. Lukas IS NOT rock.

I believe it was Tommy Lee’s decision to have Lukas. If you recall back the earlier shows, he was on Lukas’s side right from the start. Only Newsted had proper ears. But I have to say that it was the “fans” that are to be blamed. It was their votes that kept him in the top most of the time when it was evident that he was nothing but a poser. Again, it was looks and the illusion that Lukas brought the rock that won him the gig. Goes to show what the state of rock is right now which is downright pathetic and saddening. To the people who voted for that scum, thank you all for being such witless “rockers”!

Clearly Supernova chose that shit for a simple reason: they think he might be able to push sales of their soon-to-be shitty album. I for one have lost respect for them. I’m even disappointed in Jason. He should have continued to jibe Lukas for singing like a frog with a throat infection. Maybe, just maybe, the outcome would have been different.

So cheers to them, they’re one less band to like now. Supernova’s gain is certainly their lost.

Chris is signing off. For now…

PS: This diatribe was brought to you with liberal doses of reality and old-school rock.

Tuesday, 12 September 2006

Let’s watch some TV!

So there I was on my plastic yet comfy Ikea chair, wielding the remote control like a light sabre, changing channels like I was about to slash an imbecile into two when I stopped at the Discovery Channel. The topic: HOT ANIMAL SEX. Hoo yeah!

Seriously speaking, the idiot box is currently undergoing its biggest revolution and it’s called “Good Shows That Do Not Suck Like Seinfeld”. C’mon, I don’t get people and their fascination with the bland, whiny, and smarmy Jerry Seinfeld. The guy with the frizzy hair and incontinent-ish body movements is a hell lot funnier than him. The fat guy with the lowest self-esteem in the world is funnier than him while the woman with the frizzy hair is just forgettable. And guess what? Astro* is showing it till the end of the friggin’ year! Argh! Anyhow, this post isn’t a diatribe about some 90’s comedy, it’s about the shows that are currently shown on terrestrial television.

I present to you, Chris’s Favourite Non-Astro Shows.

First up, My Name is Earl. This show is so funny. It’s about this contemptible yet lovable buffoon Earl played to perfection by Jason Lee, who won the lottery but after a few minutes was hit by a car and loses the ticket. It was at this point in time that he saw an episode of Carson Daly’s talk show talking about karma. He then writes a whole list of bad things he’s done in the past and is going to correct all of them. Being a big believer in karma I fell in love with the show instantly. Its satire is so ludicrous that it makes sense. It’s so over the top that it stays grounded in reality. It’s like a morals class, what goes around comes around. And by the way, that Latina lady is so hot she made my nachos sizzle (That was very bad with a capital D).

Next up is Bones. My Friday nights used to be terrible. Shows were terrible and I didn’t really want to watch yet another repeat of World’s Most Amazing Videos. So when this show finally arrived on our shores, I was glad that my Fridays won’t be crappy anymore. I like Emily Deschanel. I like the way she delivers her lines, it is devoid of any emotion and is spoken entirely as matter of fact. Though I have to say that I prefer her sister’s (the girl from Elf, the only Will Ferrell movie I like) rather deliberate and eccentric way of acting (and unconventional looks too). I’m being picky so bah. The repartee between her and former evil turned sappy Barry Manilow lovin’ vampire is quite fun. I for one do not want to see them getting together. Remember when Niles got together with Daphne? Disastrous. Or when Mulder and Scully decided to do it after chasing their 53684184th alien? File that under BAD!

And last but certainly not least, Ghost Whisperer. Inane title aside, there are only 2 reasons why any sane, very straight guy would ever watch this show. Firstly, Jennifer Love Hewitt. Ridiculous and bloody hideous hairstyle aside it’s still Jennifer Love Hewitt. Secondly, Jennifer Love Hewitt’s décolletage and they way in which she helps ghosts while wearing gravity defying, boob jiggling tops. If I was the husband, I’d have to administer CPR to myself whenever those jugs pass me by. The show however is hopeless and repetitious. Thank you to those for creating Medium, while not as sexy as the aforementioned Ghost Whisperer, it’s a lot darker and actually quite creepy. That Arquette lady has the same horrendous hairstyle as Hewitt though. Sigh, bad taste is contagious. (Ghost Whisperer has finished its run here in Malaysia. I can’t wait for the second season! Honest! Pigs do fly!)

So there you have it. Some of my favourite shows that most people won’t watch because they’re stuck watching yet another lame reality programme. Anyhow, I’m off to watch this little show called Arrested Development. Hopefully I’ll be able to do the chicken dance soon. Till then, happy couch potato-ing!

Chris is signing off. For now…

* = Astro is the country’s leading cable operator. They suck massive donkey balls.

PS: I prefer to watch a good TV show than go to a noisy club and party with people I don’t know.