Tuesday, January 29, 2008

How Japan Killed My Childhood

"... with an overwhelming, surprising transformation..."

A line from the theme song in the video below.

No shit.

There are so many things wrong with this I don't know which I want to piss on first.

How many of you grew up with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles as your heroes in your kindergarten days? I'm guessing that there's not many since most you were either girls at that age (I still hope you are) or haven't been born yet (I hope you are now). If you've never known the original TMNT stories, you probably won't be able to see how many shards of broken glass this anime version of TMNT shoved up us old fans' assholes. BUT DAMMIT I NEED TO RANT!!!

  • Is it a fricking law in Japan that any action adventure ensemble superheroes MUST power-up like Super Saiyans, or have their own colour-coded animal mechas that can assemble themselves into an ultimate boss mecha?!!
  • Is there not one person in Japan who knows enough English to NOT come up with names and concepts that are lousier than what comes out of my butt?!! What the flaming dick is Saint Mutation, the Turtle Saint??!!!! Anthology of Superman Legendz??!!!!
  • Shredder, Bebop and Rocksteady is NOT, under any circumstances or mind-altering drugs, Team Rocket.
  • Shredder is suppose to be bad-ass! Fuck, he's the very epitome of bad-assery! There's a picture of him beside every entry in the Dictionary of Bad-Ass. He's so bad-ass he's Wolverine, Darth Vader, Katsumoto from The Last Samurai AND a durian (arguably the most bad-ass fruit ever invented by psychotic Malaysian geneticists) all-in-one! And they fucking castrated SHREDDER!!!

I was a genuine hardcore fan from way back. All my birthday cakes had to be Ninja Turtle cakes. My schoolbags, pencil cases, dinner-plates, bicycle, T-shirts and even underwear had Ninja Turtles on them! I spent every hour of my kiddy life pretending I'm Donatello, genius turtle who kicks ass with a stick. Now that's what I call childhood - not spent worshipping some retarded sing-along purple dinosaur.

Damn Japs. They invaded my homeland and my ancestral homeland, murdered our people and raped our women - and now they've come back perpetrate surprise butt-sex on my childhood.

For the record, I'm not into animes, which 90% of my Malaysian peers wank to and which my otaku sister is adamantly addicted to no matter how many times her insanely cool brother attempts to brainwash her. And I don't read mangas either, and I'll murder the next person who tries to tell me that they are works of art. I'm a Batman graphic novels fan. Batman: The Long Halloween is a good place to start if you're not familiar with the series - it's gritty and haunting with none of that campy shit you see in the animated series (and of course in manga and anime, 90% of which are made out of stuff ejaculated by rainbow-coloured campy fairies). Think Batman Begins, but with ten times the bad-ass.

End of rant. Back to the books I go.

k0k s3n w4i

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Just You and the Big Screen

"Language has created the word loneliness to express the pain of being alone, and the word solitude to express the glory of being alone."

Paul Tillich

I've totally forgotten about this post. I had it in draft since September, 2007.

"Why you so pathetic one?"

I can't remember who said that to me. I have a few likely candidates who could have wafting about in my mind like half-formed spectres dancing on my finger tips, but when I try to close my hands around them, they would dissipate and drip through the crevices between my digits like smoke. That's precisely how it feels like when I try to recollect something old and expired. I have a terrible memory, a trait which my Dad insist I, his eldest spawn, inherit from him.

"Why you so pathetic one?"

That was the response I got when I told someone, whoever that was, that I routinely visit movie theatres alone. It was a remark indicating a little bit of pity (not sympathy, that's different) and whole lot of 'Damn, I'm glad that I'm not you' laced with a sprinkling of malice. It's as if my solo trips to the movies were circumstantial rather than preferential (they were not). You'll find that catching a movie alone is an experience of a different sort, if you've ever bothered to give it a try. Not having someone leaning towards me and asking me in a much-too-loud whisper every two minutes to explain the latest turns of the plot is definitely a plus, and there is also a liberating sense of anonymity which allows me to be as uncouth and uncultured as I like. And besides, it's really hard to find someone else who shares my enjoyment of third and fourth row seats from the front, where the big screen is positively looming.

Last September during the mid-year hols, I've discovered a new haunt, the recently opened MBO cineplex of Melaka Mall (formerly Kotamas). My ol' retired Dad, who too has a propensity to hit the movies own his lonesome (Darwin much?), recommended the place to me. One tenth of the mall has been reopened, but no big name brands or popular chain restaurants yet, unfortch - so it's probably doomed to fail again or become one of those hubs for Malay delinquents, cut-price Nazi skinheads and Chinese ah-beng lowlifes to loiter about like what Plaza Hang Tuah opposite the old bus station has become. Not good for business, see?

Desolate is the word I would use to describe Melaka Mall, with its too-bright antiseptic fluorescent lights, number of lifeless mall rats you can count with the fingers on one hand and bored sales assistants slumped behind counters with a phone in their hands, texting their boyfriends and whining about how much they needed a hug. I was pleasantly surprised to find that an old Cantonese rock song by the now-disbanded Beyond were blaring resolutely from the PA system - played by a Malay disc jockey, half-hidden beside the stage in the atrium. That made the place a little less cold for some reason, and I sat there till the song ended.

It's a song that demanded respect.

The MBO cineplex is at the top floor and it stood in stark contrast with the rest of the place. I think the neon lighting has something to with it, and the colourful movie posters too, which plastered every available surface.

Neon silence.

There's a somewhat decent café in the cineplex which I thought was perfect for someone like me who watches several flicks at a stretch, who needs someplace to stone while waiting for the next movie to start (free Wi-Fi too incidentally). That's where I first saw Ben.

Okay, I don't really know what his name is but Ben seemed oddly appropriate to me. Ben is a guy who is either in his late twenties or early forties - it's hard to tell. He has a unkempt mop of lustreless hair on his head which no doubt could stand to gain a lot from a good conditioner. His complexion is dark, quite visibly a result of too much time under the sun and there were permanent dark rings around his little eyes. He is also rather stout in stature, almost Hobbit-like but unfortunately, he has none of the cuteness.

I noticed him because he's alone too. I wonder if anyone has ever realise this, but people who are alone in any given place always form these invisible fraternities on an abstract level. We would always notice each other in a silent, solemn way and acknowledge each other without really meaning to. And if caught the eyes of one of our own, we would experience these flashes of undefined intimacy that are quite beyond the capacity of my vocabulary to describe. It's like understanding, without really knowing anything at all. We feel so far removed from the crowd of noisy groups of friends and whispering couples that we must be sharing a common plane of spiritual existence elsewhere - some sort of limbo for loners.

Ben and I only exchanged a line each - when I was about to enter the wrong theatre and Ben, somehow knowing that I was going to watch the same flick he was, told me,

"It's theatre four."

Concise, but not at all curt. He sounded surprisingly soft-spoken, not at all as gruff as I painted him to be in my mind's ears. Ironically, the movie was The Invisible.

"Thank you..." I replied uncertainly.

We were the only two person in the entire theatre, with him sitting right at the back and I in the third row from the front. That's why I like going to the movies on a weekday afternoon - I get to have the entire hall to myself, almost. Back when I was working in GSC, I was told to to refund tickets if there were too few customers per screening (something to do with the profit versus cost ratio) but MBO apparently doesn't follow that practice. I hope they aren't operating at a loss. I really like that place.

Ben does too, I guess. I see him almost every time I went there during my month long holiday. And he was always alone.

"Why you so pathetic one?"

I hope he has a girlfriend now.

PS: Another thing about the MBO cineplex is their awesome manager, who I first met when I was inquiring about a novel I carelessly left behind in one of their halls. He had a gender-neutral name like Jackie or Leslie, but I can't recall what it was exactly now. I couldn't tell whether he's Malay, Chinese or Serani either. He took my number, promising to give me a call as soon as my book turns up - which did. He dropped me a line a few days later, and we talked a bit about movies and cineplexes (seeing that I worked in one before) when I went to retrieve my book. He's heckuva friendlier and warmer guy than my old boss at the GSC at Mahkota Parade mall, I can tell you. Boycott GSC! Support MBO!

Movie freak foh loife,
k0k s3n w4i

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Quirky Day Out

"You can like the life you're living. You can live the life you like."

Roxie Hart singing "Nowadays", Chicago (2002)

I just can't get it out of my head.

Last Friday, Phoebe and I (I seem to be saying "Phoebe and I" a lot these days, huh?) decided take a bus down to Mangalore, the token big city of the small town of Manipal, which I live in at the moment. It's kind of like what KL is to Malacca, except that Mangalore is pretty backwards even when compared to good ol' Malacca town. I think it must have been my 4th or 5th time there, and my reason for going was the same as my reasons for my previous visits - to catch a movie. Or rather, two.

This time, it's for The Golden Compass and National Treasure: The Book of Secrets.

It's a two-hour bus ride from Manipal to Mangalore, and the public transportation services here aren't world-class, I can tell you. I have tons of horror stories about Indian buses that'll make your skin crawl up and down and do back-flips through fire-hoops but this - this seriously takes the cake,

I am not pleased.

First off, you'll have to forgive my appearance. The photograph was taken discreetly from a terribly unflattering low angle. I am like 2 months due for a maintenance haircut and at that moment, I happened to have been recently and abruptly woken up from a nap which I - if you would allow me to add - was enjoying a great deal.


Because the whiff of something tart, rank, and possibly in an advanced stage of decay socked me good in the snoot. For reasons best left rotting in the X-files, the plump, local man sitting beside me suddenly (and without any warning whatsoever) raised his right arm and latched on to the luggage compartment above my head - giving me a deadly blast of eau de armpit hair square in the face.

What the fuck did I ever do to him? Did I kill his mother, rape his dog and eat all his chapatis?! The bus wasn't even swerving as violently in the unbalanced psycho way as it usually does! And he was in a bloody seat - not standing and being narrowly jerked off his feet and out the bus' window at every turn! He didn't need support! Do you know what he needs? He needs to stop flashing his sour ketiak and attempting to murder innocent, law-abiding civilians on buses with his freakishly powerful BO.

I pretty much spent the rest of the bus journey leaning as far as I could from the disgusting, curly, drippy armpit hairs sitting right there in plain sight inches from my left cheek.

You'd think a man can take a hint. Gah. Ack.

Moving along with the story - we missed our stop when we finally reached Mangalore with my miraculous survival of the fiendish ordeal, so we had to take an auto rickshaw to Bharath Mall (which was pretty much the only place worth going to in Mangalore).

We found this cute auto which had hearts sewed onto its upholstery,

Ooh! How twee! Pffft.

The missus and I in that auto.

I think there was some political rally thing going on that day in Mangalore because we spotted a whole procession of autos on the road all flying the Indian National Congress Party's flag,

Talk to the hand. I like this party.

It's hard to imagine a bunch of people who had to make a living chauffeuring folks around would have the time (and petrol) to spend making circuits around town in a show of conviction for their political party of choice. I imagine that they are probably paid for this. Kind of like how Digi is corrupting the trishaws back in Malacca.

They even have a pickup ferrying a troupe of men with drums following the mini-parade around,

Not that anyone can hear them over the level of traffic noise pollution the typical Indian city suffers. I swear that every driver had one hand on the horn at all times.

One of the weird things you'll see at Bharath Mall is that they have metal detectors which customers have to walk through in order to get in,

Anti-terrorist security measures in a small Indian city.

It's admirable, really, how seriously they view the threat of suicide-bombing extremist hereabouts. I mean, look at us in Malaysia! How perfectly sloppy! Been to KLCC? We ain't got no metal detectors there! Since it's one of the world's tallest buildings, you'd think they employ the whole shebang - y'know, like narcotic-sniffing dogs, X-ray scans and full Kevlar-armoured guards armed with sub-machine guns.

But nooooo. We got none of that. Not even mandatory full-body, cavity searches. Disgraceful, that's what it is.

Now that I'm reminded of it, Shaki told me that when he first came here last year, they had to post someone on duty by the escalator to instruct some of the less bright local customers on how to ride it properly. Someone could seriously get hurt on those magically moving stairs, eh?

Anyway, it turned out that The Golden Compass had its last run in the Adlabs theatre here the day before, so we had to be contented with watching just National Treasure 2. Our outing was starting to shape into a "series of unfortunate events" kind of day. Okay, given that there's only two unfortunate happenstances so far you might not think it qualifies as one, but I can tell this one thing about you, mister - you have obviously never sat beside an open ketiak before.

Since the flick plays at 2.30 pm, we opted to have lunch at Pizza Hut first,

My girl likes to stir.

From where we sat, we spotted this conga line,

Blind leading the blind leading the blind leading the blind.

Now that I've seen it, that idiom sort of lost its connotations for me. You can't help feeling sorry for them. It took them forever to negotiate their way to the front door (at one point, the alpha blind man nearly led them down to the basement instead of the front door). If you look really close at this picture, you'll see that he has a bicycle bell attached to his stick.

I think that they must be one of those unfortunate folks which represent some sort of society which aids certain people of a specific handicap - the sort that got this little portfolio full of newspaper clippings and certificates and stuff like that.

Too bad the guard at the door wouldn't let them in. They should have just pretended that they are shoppers.

It's pretty wrenching to see the four of them forlornly making their way down the steps onto the hot summer streets again after trying so hard to find the entrance.

We headed to the Coffee Day outlet there after lunch to while away the hour or so we still have before the flick starts,


I always enjoyed reading the menus, feedback forms, signs and posters of franchised F&B outlets in India (especially Coffee Day's and Barista's) because they are always worth the gander for a bit of unexpected wit. They aren't like the boring, unimaginative drivel we see in our typical Malaysian chain restaurants. Have you read the Sushi King menu before? It's like a furniture catalogue written by a law student on valium.

You know you're in love when you keep sneaking shots at her.

From the monthly Coffee Times magazine of Coffee Day.


It's only a couple journal when there's more than two couple cam-whoring photographs per post. Last you'll see of us in this update, I promise.

Later at the One Dollar Store (which ironically sells stuff priced at 100 rupees apiece), I saw something that looked suspiciously like a box of Cap'n Crunch cereal, which I always wanted to try. It couldn't be, of course - not at 100 rupees, I thought to myself.

And damn straight, it wasn't,

For some reason, I am impressed.

It only looked like a Cap'n Crunch cereal box from 5 feet away or more but once you get close enough, you'll choke and blurt out, "Cap'n Crunch isn't kangaroo!" But hey, I still think it's a seriously well-done imitation. I wish I've bought one now, just for the novelty of it. Oh, and can anyone tell me where I can get some Niko, Reebak and Adidaz merchandise? I always wanted fake stuff that are made to look intentionally pirated. I mean, put it this way - since everyone is wearing overpriced tees with that stupid, contrived motto "Just Do It", it'll be really nifty if yours says "Just Screw It".

One day, I'll print a shirt like that for myself.

Speaking of nifty shirts, we spotted this right after we exit the theatre,


Why can't our medical school's tee-shirt look half as cool? I wonder which geek designed it.

And one last picture,

It's funny once you know what this brand sells.

C'mon people, try to guess what it is. I'll tell you guys the answer when I reply your comments later. Whoever manage to get it right will win an all-expense paid trip to the Maldives!


No, really.

Okay, I'm just shitting you.

We finally left Mangalore at about 5.00 pm even though I wanted to shop for a backpack for my Awesome, Super-Cool North Indian Backpacking Escapade in March during the month-long hols. Mainly because I was tired. I'm like that - always terribly undisciplined and fickle. I would make up plans from the start and then nix them on the way depending on how I feel. I'm told that real men aren't like that at all. Real men always stick to the plan, and get things done, and all those other macho crap I keep hearing about. As far as I'm concerned, I think having a tallywacker should qualify me as one already. I still think football stinks.

The end.

Of this post.

Bye bye.

Big lazy blogger,
k0k s3n w4i

Saturday, January 19, 2008

im not drunk lol xD

"phoebs thinks its cute."


"she's your gf. she's biased."


"thank god."


beve n i about my msn display picture... or sum shit liddat la


phoebe n i went to bluewaters jus now cos i promised her earlier this week tat i wud take her dere to makan da mash taters there mar. taters soundss so much betta than po-ta-to rite? i dun noe y people even stil call em po-ta-tos. somethin shud be done bout that in that oxford dictionery thingy srsly. taters roxxor. po-ta-to suck ass!!!!!

where was i? OH!!! I remember!!! u kno not? the mash taters at bluewaters is da shit man. its the best i hav eaten evar. and phoebs tinks so tooo. i noew it looks kinda funky... i mean... kinda funny. but its kinda funky too joo noe whut ah mean??? but okay okay.. nuff wiv my shit. here's pikchur...


i noe it looks laik vomit, i agree oso but then da taste damn the geng 1. i dono y la. no gravy oso rite?!? first time i eat it that time hor, i at first tot they mixed sum rice innit. i can feel like got pieaces of squishee stuff inside my mouf. meybe its sum tater not mashed kau kau. buthen hor, the flaver realli nice mar. so evrytime go there i order lor. the important thing is dun think so much when chew can d.

of cos we not only eat mash taters la. got other stuf oso. err she had chiken steak i think. and i ate... erm..... errr.... wait wait, lemme think, i noe this 1.... OH! chiken steak!!! chiken steak oso, but my one got mushroom in the sauce mia. hers dun have. so they dun taste the same.....

but lemme tell u one thing la. the portions at bluewaters very the kiam siap 1. makan tak kenyang mia. cos tat place club mar. oklar, it's not club so hi class like zouk or pure bar or shit liddat, but still got ballroom for ppl to dance somewhere at the back la. u walk past the toilets den can see d. i dono y bt i feel like going there too. suddenly feel like i very pro at dancing bt phoebe dowan let me go..

BEST. DRINK. EVAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

OH OH OH!!! wana tell u all hor. i damn like tis pina colada. i think it got rum n coconut krim. n oso got that spiky fruit mia but i not talking abt durian here k? a bit yello 1 inside. NO LAR. NOT DURIAN LA! i noe durian oso yello inside bt tat's not it k? kanasai...

but dun worry la, i a bit a bit wun get drunk mia... pina colada only mer. like shandy only, i tink.

I dono abt tat 2 other glasses of something else i drank la. got vodka 1. and gin. and tequila. and got rum oso gua...

my supercute gefren mabuk d lolololol!!!1!11!!!1!

too bad my lou po not geng at holding her alcohol. she became like lobster boil too long d after oni half a glass of tequila sunrise. u look at her face!!! n her cheeks wuz srsly burning up when i touched them. i sit beside her can feel her radiating solar power.

bt i happen to tink that she's way hotter after she mabuk d xD. her smile also becum broader :3...

so afterwards, in case i order sommore pina colada, i faster call for the bill and pay lor. n while we were waiting for the bouncer guy at bluewater's front gate to call for an auto (also called tuk-tuk in siam and jawa) for us, we challenged each other to stupid drunk tests. like walking in straight line. and throwing stuff into the air and catching them with one hand oni. the other clubbers whu were just coming in gave phoebe funny looks (not me cos i damn the sober). wait wait wait!!! i just remember somthing funny!!! when we juz exited that place n was walking to the bouncer, phoebe suddenly just drop the purse she was holding in her hand!!! like walk walk walk walk then drop... can't even hold her purse properly d LOL!!!111!1 after oni 1 cocktail!!

i duno y la but when the auto came d, and phoebs and i was walking out, i accidentally ter-kicked the door. and i said sorry to it xD. the bouncer fella and his frens was there and they all LOL at me..

i wana go bek there to makan again next week :D

where got drunk leh,
k0k s4n w3i

Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Best Movie You Have Never Watched

"A movie without a single redeeming quality that we highly recommend."

A review of Dragon Wars at movies.ign.com

There are technically no spoilers in this post. How can you spoil something which is already so spoilt?

I believe this is only the third time ever for me to dedicate an entire post to rave about a single movie. The first one I wrote was about The Hunchback of Notre Dame, specifically its villain, Judge Claude Frollo – who I consider to be the darkest, most complex antagonist ever to emerge from the dank depths of the Disneyland’s deepest dungeons. And the second piece was a rather rambling article on why I think 2005’s Hard Candy, a psychological thriller exploring the dynamics between a paedophile and a very disturbed fourteen-year-old, was such a kick-ass watch for me.

My subject of interest this time?


Or better known by its American release title, Dragon Wars.

At one time or another, we all have entered a theatre with great expectations, and discovered that the movie is way better than we could possibly thought it can be. The first thing we’d do about it is tell everyone. We just wouldn’t shut the fuck up. We would bug and badger and bully everybody till they watch it too just to shut our holes. Then, we would be there standing right there excitedly at the theatre’s exit with big a shit-eating grin, saying "Told you, right?!" in a ridiculously gushy voice, and our friends would will reply "Yea," in a tired, 'whatever' monotone.

D-War is the complete opposite. It’s a movie that was so ripped apart by critics that all the king’s jigsaw puzzle experts couldn’t put it together again - and understandably, my expectations were lower than a wife-abusing drunkard’s standing in a popularity poll surveying the opinions of abused wives. It’s a movie which I downloaded just because there’s a good quality DVD-rip torrent available and I was so incredibly bored that even two slugs mating with strap-ons could have kept me entertained for hours on end (I wanted to say two-elderly lesbians, but the mental image KO’ed my brain). It was by this most auspicious of circumstances that I decided to give this movie a watch.

And by Jove, it’s bad. It’s fucking bad. It’s bad, bad, bad, bad, bad to infinity bad. It’s almost as bad as that Indian buttermilk I glugged in December, but at some point, the flick got so overwhelmingly crappy that it actually begins to be good.

I can’t remember the last time I ever laughed so hard or said "What the fuck?" so many times in the span of an hour and a half watching a movie. The dialogues sounded like anime subtitles read out loud by Keanu Reeves. The storyline is so absurd that even a 7-year-old kid think its bull. Coherence? Absent. Continuity? Ass-raped. The only thing that deserves some degree of commendation in this over the top flop is its CGI action sequences, which was surprisingly damn good considering its budget – which is fraction of what Michael Bay had to sacrificed as an offering to the great Transformer gods.

The movie starts with the appearance of Ethan, a reporter which arrived at a site of carnage in the city of Los Angeles, and spotted a giant scale half-buried in dirt. He then went back to his news station to emo and had a flashback while playing with his funky medallion.

… and another flashback within the flashback.

The flashback (and the one inside it) served as an exposition sequence, where an old antique dealer named Jack told a younger Ethan about the Imoogis, giant serpents of Korean folklores which dreams to one day be celestial dragons. Apparently, every 500 years, heaven would send some sort of mojo called the Yoo-Yih-Joo down to earth, which will manifest as a dragon-shaped tattoo on the left shoulder of a maiden. This Yoo-Yih-Joo is what a good Imoogi need to level-up and become a celestial dragon. The problem is, there’s also a bad Imoogi, known as the Buraki, who also wants the Yoo-Yih-Joo to become a powerful dragon (and possibly to conquer the world or something). So the good Korean heaven sent down two more Korean extras, a master and a disciple, to make sure that the Yoo-Yih-Joo does not fall into Buraki’s hands (or mouth, for those who want to be anal about how snakes have no hands).

This show is worth watching just to see that old man trying futilely to explain to a little boy the difference between the Imoogi, the Buraki and the Yoo-Yih-Joo.

Best. Scene. Evar.

I mean, the back-story is so stupid and convoluted that two separate characters in the flashbacks actually asked bewilderedly, "What are you talking about?"

But the flashback sequence did have its saving features,




Well, the important this is that the disciple of the master who was sent down from heaven fell in love with the Yoo-Yih-Joo, which is also a girl, by the way, in case you aren’t following so well. So the disciple ran away with the chick (who is also the Yoo-Yih-Joo) because he didn’t want to sacrifice her to the good Imoogi either, which was what he and his master were supposed to do. Buraki gave chase, and the lovers leapt down from a high cliff and went "Splat!" The end.

The end to the flashback within the flashback, that is.

Things just kept materialising on screen out of no-freaking-where.

Then Jack went on to say that he’s actually the old master, and that Ethan is the reincarnated disciple. He also revealed that the new Yoo-Yih-Joo’s name is Sarah.

Bah, this is pointless. Trying to explain the plot to you is like trying teach a fish how to speak duck. Let’s just move along to my reasons for why this movie owns,

#1 – The Buraki has a henchman who looks like a cross between Shredder and Darth Vader.

#2 – He has a fucking lightsaber.

#3 – There’s a scene where the Buraki ate a ridiculously fake elephant at the zoo.

#4 – Massive, and I do mean MASSIVE CGI carnage in the middle of Los Angeles. Buraki’s army of ugly things versus tanks, helicopters and SWAT teams. Almost as freaking good as Transformers! Honest!

Somewhere through the middle of the flick, Ethan again wanted to run away with the new Yoo-Yih-Joo, Sarah, but Jack intervened, and he delivered the funniest line I’ve ever heard on screen,

"The fate of the world rest on your shoulders. Deny this, and you will deny yourself everything. Even the girl."

I just cracked up. I laughed till my sides split and my cheeks were sore, and I replayed that part like seven times over before I could keep a straight face again.

Damn, that Jack certainly knows what buttons to push on a guy.

Anyhow, after the epic battle in the city, Ethan and Sarah drove out of town and headed to Mexico. They were captured en-route and soon found themselves in some creepy temple place, in the middle of a cult ceremony surrounded by thousands of Buraki’s cronies. Sarah was tied to an altar while Ethan was tied to a pole. Then, a magic light shoot down from heaven onto Ethan’s funky medallion, and it suddenly began shooting laser beams at all the bad guys – which all got fried and died. Shredder Vader survived and attacked Ethan with his lightsaber, but he accidentally touched Ethan’s Deus ex Machina medallion, and exploded.

Buraki, however, wasn’t impressed, and tried to eat Sarah (who is also the Yoo-Yih-Joo, remember?) but it was stopped mid-chomp by a good Imoogi (I know that because Ethan actually said "It’s the good Imoogi!" out loud and made me laugh real hard for a good 5 minutes), which came out of nowhere at all. That started a rather cool snake-on-snake wrestling match, but Buraki managed to lay the smackdown on the Imoogi.

The awesomest Chinese dragon I’ve ever seen rendered in 3D. Also reason # 5 why this flick owns – kick-ass kaiju fight!

Then Sarah stood up to the Buraki and her dragon-shaped tattoo began to shine real bright like. And she transformed into a blue, shiny crystal ball and flew into the wounded Imoogi’s mouth. The good Imoogi (having gotten the Yoo-Yih-Joo mojo) morphed into a celestial dragon and whooped Buraki’s snakey ass with so much style you’d think it’s wearing Prada. It finally ended when the dragon spit into Buraki’s mouth, and it got so disgusted and died on the spot. Win!

No, seriously. That’s how it ended.

Everyone knows that the most important thing about a movie, regardless of its genre, is that it has to be entertaining. And I can’t remember the last time I’ve had so much fun watching a show on my own. It may not be something the critics love. Heck, it sucked so hard you can put it in outer space and call it a black hole - but still I highly recommend this to anyone who’s willing to indulge in a little bit of clean, stupid entertainment on a lonely Saturday night. Give this a try!

Now, anyone of you know any movies that are also so bad it’s good? Share the fun, people! Don’t hog!

D-War fanboy,
k0k s3n w4i

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

My Life in Between Exam Papers

"Last of all Húrin stood alone. Then he cast aside his shield, and wielded an axe two-handed; and it is sung that the axe smoked in the black blood of the troll-guard of Gothmog until it withered, and each time that he slew Húrin cried 'Aure entuluva! Day shall come again!'"

Hurin's Last Stand
The Silmarillion,
by J. R. R. Tolkien

In this day and age, a two-handed axe is also known as "comment moderation". 9 out of 10 trolls in a survey admit that they like wanking to k0k bL0k. The last one is gay.

I am literally writing in between my exam papers here. I just returned from my Forensic Medicine paper earlier this morning - and at two o'clock in the afternoon later, I'll be pitted against a Pathology Practical paper. This is most definitely a filler post - containing snippets of what's going on in my incredibly exhausting life here, in case anyone is at all interested.

What the hell am I doing sounding so apologetic for? This IS pretty much just a web journal after all. My web journal.

First up, I just found out that I have won this year's Inter-batch Creative Writing competition.

Here's a picture of the trophy I got last year from the same contest,

Which is currently holding the job of keeping my cane chair level.

I needed another one for my table anyway.

Secondly, I had my first ever troll in this blog here. He's not the best troll in the world, but he's still my troll, okay? Here are some memorable quotes from him,

  • "You just have to accept it, even if you don't like it."
  • "The truth is we need to fuck, when we need to fuck we fuck" (This cracks me up every single time I read it!)
  • "Hi kok, why the need to hide behind another nick? Feel the need to reset yourself? Of course by reading what you typed we can tell its your KOK LOL."
  • "Come on, you need such a post to win the traffics over because of your inability to write sexual erotic postings. Admit it for once ok?"
  • "Trying to insult our intelligence? LOL You can't."

In the span of a few hours, he managed to refute himself, go hilariously out of topic, become paranoid and mistake a reader for me, attempt lamely to provoke a response and insult his own intelligence. I have encountered trolls on internet message boards before this, but I have never seen one who is so self-defeating. Guys, if you ever meet a troll in your own blog, just leave him alone. He'll whoop his own ass for you.

And, it is always funny to see how a troll assumes that everyone is as jobless as he is. Sorry kibitzer, whoever you are. I hope you weren't the troll's alter ego. I had my suspicions because "kibitz" means "to look on and offer unwanted, usually meddlesome advice to others." [Edit: But kibitzer have been so kind as to shrug off his/her shroud of silent stance of observation to clarify that he/she is not in the least bit trollish, and thus, have my full and official apology for being the suspicious bitch I am. *kowtows* Terribly unfortunate choice of nickname, but I think it has a nice ring to it, in spite of the connotations]

And sorry, Pink Leo, for getting in the untimely crossfire.

[Edit: AND thank you, beve, for referring to me as "narrow-minded kok"]

Just because this post is so ridiculously short and pointless,

Some creepy, hovering thing I drew last year.

I resurrected this from my long dead deviantART account, and I thought that you guys might like to give your expert criticism on how badly my pencil-drawn art suck donkey nads. But since I'm a medical student and not an art major, I'm fully allowed to stink at it.

Okay, that's it for this post. I'm running off for my next paper now. Comment moderation would be switched on, by the way, now that a troll is roaming about the neighborhood and taking shits in the flower-beds.

Is up to here in exam black and blues,
k0k s3n w4i

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Innit is Where Blogging Died

"Innit revolutionizes the Nuffnang community..."

In the help section of the Innit page.

Revolutionizes, my ass.

The recipe which attracts Nangs to posts like flies to shit.

Yes, this post is directed to everyone of you excellent human beings who have put on the mantle of "blogger", then turned around half as quickly and wiped your filthy snot all over it.

I went into blogging early last year with the great expectation of an intellectual community, rumored to be the avengers of hurts unheard and truths untold. And bloggers; you are the heroes which would boldly write where no government controlled press and broadcast ever wrote before. And I believed that the least of you would be authoring a page offering your experiences in everyday incidences in a somewhat coherent and mildly amusing manner.

I found that my beliefs were a tub-load of balderdash. Or in this case, an entire blogosphere of it.

I found that the Malaysian blogging community is an ailing animal, one lumbering under the weight of a free-for-all popularity contest. In my beginning months, I have had many, many visitors whose sole purpose for paying a call was to offer a link to my blog in theirs, in exchange for having their links in mine. For awhile, I did go along with it - till I realise just how utterly pointless it was. None of them was at all interested in what I write at all (nor did they themselves offered any scintillating reads in return). It's traffic they were after, and they would pawn it for ad money or bragging rights - whichever rocks their cocks. I have politely turned down every link exchange offer ever since, and I have linked only one new blogger in the past six months, whose writing I found to be mercilessly entertaining.

My perception of the blogosphere had softened somehow in the course of the year I participated in it. I am more forgiving about blogs which say, contain nothing but endless strings of badly-camwhored pictures of the author in desperately pathetic attempts to appear human cute. I've learnt to be nicer to tagboard-hoppers, even though their apparent purpose of existence is to offer insightful comments like "Hi, nice blog" and leave their link footprints everywhere they go. And I've also stopped telling bloggers who do paid posts that they are prostitutes who have sold their soul. I have became, in effect, a nicer, friendlier blogger.

Then along came Innit.

I was initially wary of using it, given the propensity of such a device to be abused. When I did, I find that Innit is certainly not something that would be useful for me at all because of my tendency to ignore the current hot news, political scandals and the latest updates in the blog ad wars. "Whoop dee doo," I said. I didn't really care.

In the earlier days of Innit, posts putting down Advertlets often garner ridiculously high counts of nangs in spite of the remarkably substandard contents most of the posts actually contained. I found that the situation had a great potential for amusement, and I devised my own "Nuffnang pawned Advertlets" post as an experiment, to see how far it'd be taken (I included an original artwork because posting an entirely "me too" post is just beneath me - and it should be beneath everyone else too). I came back from college later that day to find that my post had been propelled to front-page honour. Amazing what the right blog title can do, really.

And of course, the other "bloggers" realise just how powerful the right blog titles can be too.

Yesterday, for instance,

Yesterday, 12th of January, 2008; smut have completely filled the front-page.

So, this is how Innit revolutionizes the Nuffnang community? Nuffnang, is this seriously the image you want to show everyone? To potential members of Nuffnang and advertisers alike?

Behold ye, the all time popular posties.

The all-time second-favourite post was one of a blogger shamelessly prostituting her sister. And for what? FOR FUCKING NANGS! And number three is a post with a picture of a hot waitress! And she's not even 62 nangs hot! I'd give her 10 nangs, max.

Let's take a step back a reflect on this gross display of depravity. We bloggers have cried outrage at the government for unfairly labeling us as a people of impaired moral sensibilities, as a bunch of yahoos incapable in censoring what ought not be said - and worse, as liars. As of today, with Innit so conveniently displayed for all to see, those accusations were not unfounded. We are a people of extensively handicapped morals. We are a bunch of yahoos talking dick. And as proven by a lot of the posts with risqué titles but lack of the explicit contents it boasts (a terribly, terribly unprincipled trick to harvest nangs and visits) - we ARE indeed LIARS. Is THIS the freedom of speech that real bloggers have risked arrest and suffered prosecution to defend, I ask you? IS. THIS. IT?!

People, everyone has the right to write his mind - but that doesn't mean everyone should. Consider what sort of mind you're revealing for everyone to disdain and scorn, to look down upon with contempt like it's a filthy ball of used toilet paper. Or worse yet, even if you're completely impenetrable by negative opinions on your person, take a minute to think of the image you're associating the rest of us with. Not everyone abuses Innit by posting entries bordering on outright pornography - and (surprisingly) uninteresting ones at that. Not everyone puts a "Nang me pls pls pls link" with every quasi-erotic post they write (or rather, don't write) in lame bids for popularity. Have anyone consider how cheap that looks to readers who can conceivably be interested in your writings, but won't now because they are turned off by your self-debasing, whoring ways?

And you degenerate readers who can't seem to tire of being led on by subpar erotica, you aren't much better. If you must debauch yourselves with garbage, at least get up on your ass and go hunt for quality debauching materials. There's an internet full of 'em out there. I understand that all you "nangers" on Innit are bloggers yourselves. Your support of such unethical, undignified, unclean writings is only going to reflect badly on the entirety of our community - even if you avoid from sinking to the molluscan, filter-feeding "blogging" practices you applaud unabashedly yourselves.

Bloggers, please post only articles you deem worthy of attention and credit for the effort you've expended to pen. Post original opinions. Post things you believe to be imperative to the community, to bloggers and to us, the people of Malaysia and Singapore. Please stop making all of us look bad. Please stop making yourselves look bad.

Readers, please be supportive of writers with genuine opinions. Stop nang'ing posts with suggestive titles but is obviously lacking substance even at face value. When I have the time, I nang posts that deserve the commendation, but aren't getting the attention they deserve. Let's face it, not all of us can write provocative essays, stimulating treatises and discerning discourses of any significance whenever we want to.

But the least we can do is make sure that those that can are heard.

The rest of you out there who have maintained your integrity, have stayed aloof while everyone else have turned into "nang me" zombies, and have steadfastly produced decent, thoughtful posts amidst the noise pollution that is Innit, and the corruption of the blogosphere of late,

You have my sincere respect.

Where's my flame-proof jumpsuit?
k0k s3n w4i

Friday, January 11, 2008

Something I Drew for the Comment Whore in You

"Leave comments. They make me happy :-)"

Spotted in Aya's sidebar

Empty Comment Box Emo
Empty comment boxes makes me emo too.

This is just a quickie, people. I have a Microbiology Pharmacology paper to slay tomorrow so I can't just stick around and like, write stuff, y'know.

But I still want comments.

PS: TGIF doesn't exist in medical schools.

PPS: The blog title rhymes! Next artistic conquest: Poetry!

PPPS: Okay just kidding. I can't rhyme for pudding.

EDIT: nissy (in the comment box below) had been so kind as to SMS me and tell me that it's a Pharmacology paper - NOT a Microbiology paper tomorrow. See how nice my friends are to me :p?

PPPPS: Yeah, I live my life not knowing what exam papers I'm sitting for next. Nor the venue. Nor the time they are scheduled for that matter.

PPPPPS: So be afraid.

PPPPPPS: Be very afraid.

Resident comment whore,
k0k s3n w4i

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Pretty Pasta and Ugly Soups

"Food for thought is no substitute for the real thing."

Walt Kelly, the cartoonist who drew Pogo

Hi, I'm a blogger
Waiters always give me that look too.

This post is going to be shortish-like because I have a Pathology paper doom in the morrow and you know the drill; my loquacity is inversely proportional to how fucked I think I am.

Yesterday, Phoebe and I paid a call to Basil Café (formerly Sidestop, which I thought was heckuva better name anyway) for a spot of dinner after their fortnight-long hiatus to spruce the place up. What I meant by "spruce" was that they fitted a couple of doors to the kitch, hung a few swanky lamps and (I think) tiled the staircase. Not much of a revamp, I opine.

Down an Indian Cup
Guess what this is. It's found in every Indian restaurant.

We were pleasantly surprised to find that their menu have also underwent a revision of sorts - stuff that no one orders were ixnayed, and new dishes were introduced in their stead. Phoebs and I each ordered weird soups for ourselves from their appetiser list to take out for spot of taste-drive.

Hers was,

Canadian Soup
Canadian Cheese Soup.

The moment it arrived on our table, I blurted "Where's the cheese?" out loud. I wanted to ask "Where's the Canadian?" at first but I thought better of it because café is quite the haunt for the North Americans studying here in Manipal. I suppose one of Basil's regulars gave them the recipe. That's how eateries catering to foreign aliens like us Malaysians and the Yanks survive hereabouts; off the cookbooks of their customers.

The soup wasn't bad at all, and it tasted vaguely oriental. I find it amusing how the Chinese food they serve never taste that way at all, while they frequently (albeit unintentionally) get it right in the wrong dishes. A classic example was their Fried Chicken Macaroni back in their Sidestop days - it tasted precisely like Char Kuey Teow.

And mine was,

Shorba Soup.

The menu billed it as a "traditional Indian soup with tomatoes and coconut milk" - which sounded waaay tastier in theory than in practice, mucho unfortunato. At the first sip, awful childhood memories which I thought were lost for good came flooding right back. It's that bad. There's nothing wrong with the tomato part of the bargain, and I was perfectly okay with the coconut milk bit too. The problem was - there's something else in this Soup of Death that they have neglected to mention; Asafoetida. Devil's Dung. The Stinking Gum. Whichever name you want to call it, it's still the same murder weapon they used in the local buttermilk which, if you remember, nearly took my life not too long ago.

Frankly speaking, this shlop can actually taste somewhat decent if I had bread or naan to dip in it. On its own however, it's quite lethal.

Next up on the table was,

Basil’s Steak Sauce Pasta

I have always wanted to try, but never did (because their idea of steak sauce was apparently, "rich sour cream sauce flavoured with garlic"). The thought of sour spaghetti is quite off-putting for me. I have always opted for cheesier/creamier sauces for my pasta like the ones they use in Fettucine Alfredo or Carbonara. Conversely, I find the tang of Bolognese to be quite offensive. This is, of course, a matter of personal preference. Go suck on your Bolognese all you want.

But what the hey - after my flirt with Suicide (alias Shorba Soup), I was game for anything.

On a side note, I think pastas are very photogenic regardless of how crummy they can be sometimes,


As a lucky break (bet it's God’s idea for a reward for finishing off that Satanic Shorba), the steak-sauce-smothered fusilli turned out to be pretty darn good, and there wasn’t the least trace of sourness in it! I always thought that the descriptions in menus were written to give diners an idea of what to expect when they order a dish, but I’m afraid that the crew over at Basil’s just doesn’t have a firm grasp on the concept.

Like that Shorba. Not mentioning asafoetida was like saying that a toilet bowl has porcelain and water - without warning people about the shit in it.

Basil Sink
The funky sink at Basil's. It's one of those stuff that makes people go, "Now why didn't I think of that?"

On another tangent altogether, I have always wondered what restaurant proprietors think of bloggers. I mean, we’re something like regular culinary critics. Those of us who enjoy a decent amount of hits can actually carry a bit of clout. Say if a 10,000 visitors per day food blogger saunters airily into a newly-opened bistro, then saunters airily out again hating his/her experience there and vowing to write a full-length, boot-to-the-face post about it – can that break a business or can that really break a business, I ask you?

Food Blogger Badge
A badge every blogger can use.

Restaurant owners should trip themselves over in our service whenever we walk through their doors, put their best chefs on our case, and give us big discounts to slap our big blogging mouths shut.

You know what? One day, I’m going to walk into some really posh eating place with a clipboard, a pen, and a face-ful of disapproval. They might think that I write for the culinary column in some big time paper. Gotta go practice my "tut-tuts".

Hey, it’s worth a try, right?

P.S. I am aware that my short posts are longer than some other bloggers' long posts. Sue me, wontcha?

Will blog for free nosh,
k0k s3n w4i

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Nuffnang's Killing Blow to Advertlets

"An exclusive Nuffnang blogger is a blogger that has NO advertisements from any other ad network that originates from South East Asia on his/her blog."

Nuffnang's definition of an
exclusive Nuffnang blogger

How many other proper blog ad network do you know which originates from South East Asia?

Sperm-head versus Sperm-head. The Nuffnang Jizz Man putting a foot out and down.

I received three emails yesterday from Nuffnang, one from Samantha Wong and the other two from Mr Co-Founder Timothy (which, amusingly enough, was found in my spam-box), detailing their new "exclusivity program" dubbed the Nuffnang Glitterati. It's just like the Illuminati but the difference is that it has glitter in it! Like wow, right?!

I shan't bother talking about all the fringe benefits offered by Nuffnang to members considered eligible to participate in this program but if you're interested, here's the page in their webbie that gives the full rundown.

I have never, at any single occasion, ever written about earning from blog ads or the ad network I'm affiliated with. I have always felt that that's a rather pointless thing to do - unlike some people who belt these out every other post (ads so damn the interesting mae?). As for the advertisements I have tacked all around my weblog, I like to pretend that they aren't here at all. They are nothing but a means of giving me a wee bit of free cash while I write about stuff of greater import and relevance to my life.

Since the launch of Nuffnang's blog aggregator thingamabob, Innit, I have observed the slew of posts that recount just how incredibly dysfunctional Nuffnang's primary competitor really is - and these posts would customarily garner much attention and high counts of "nangs" (Innit's versh of "props" or "kudos"... whatever). I have read posts written by disgruntled bloggers about Advertlets' rather tactless accusations of click fraud against them. Then there was much hoo-hah about Advertlets' purported delay in payment to its members. And the most recent (and also biggest) fiasco - which provoked an angry mob of nightmarish proportions - was the expiry of Advertlets' domain, and the subsequent redirection of blogs hosting their ads to some placeholder page resulting in,
  • Loss of valuable page hits
  • Partial forfeit of Nuffnang earnings for blogs also hosting Nuffnang's ads
  • And much hilarity.
All the top 'nang'ed posts over at Innit yesterday featured the identical predicament. Innit, I think, had became the greatest bane to Advertlets' fast-deflating balloon of a reputation. I can almost imagine the folks over at Nuffnang going, "Look, another anti-advertlets post! Everybody faster go nang it!"

The improbably coincidental and timely advent of the Nuffnang Glitterati interest me greatly because to date, it is the only visible act of offense from Nuffnang's camp in the blog-ad wars. From the beginning, it had always been Advertlets' initiative to deal lame blows while Nuffnang (being too cool to even bother to lift a parrying finger) worked hard at modeling themselves to provide the absolute best for their members and clients. One of Advertlets' most infamous attempt (the ghost of which still lingers here) was their rather contemptible chart which matched themselves against Nuffnang, inch-by-inch. I had an Advertlets' ad for about a week but I axed it in the end - mostly because of the sleazy aura which surrounds the web company. Nuffnang, however, has an unmarred "good guy" image.

But I guess Nuffnang stepped out now, huh? I always thought that that little stickman in their logo looked as if it's shaking a fist and raring for a fight. This time around, Nuffnang actually has the cred to bare its teeth now that it's a big, big dog - unlike Advertlets which had been yipping pathetically all through its puppyhood. I suspect that Glitterati is Nuffnang's long-planned coup de grâce to Advertlets, and by "suspect" I actually meant "bloody duh". It's a really brilliant strategy - stamping out the competition when it's down with a referee thumping to ten on the floor beside it.

Let's see if "Asia's Better Advertising Network" can get up at the count of 9.

I have been a long time supporter of Nuffnang and now that I'm getting a regular flow of ads from them, I feel even more disposed to be supportive. I'm constantly amazed at the promptitude and patience of their support team in explaining simple stuff to morons like me; like that time when Pinkpau sent me a screenshot of my blog when I complained
- to much comedic effect - that my ads weren't appearing in my site (they were apparently geo-located). Here's to the excellent peeps over at Nuffnang who have to deal with bullshits from people like me every single hour of the day while simultaneously doling out free cash back! Mucho props, kudos and respect from this little blogger here!

Come 13th of January, 2008, I'll be a Glitteratus. Why does it sound so much like "clitoris"?

P.S. Actually, this whole post was an excuse for me to show you my new-found photoshop skillz.

Am a Clitoris Glitteratus,
k0k s3n w4i

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Humanity in Writing

"Your manuscript is both good and original, but the part that is good is not original, and the part that is original is not good."

Samuel Johnson, LL.D MA

With a stiff cup of piping java in one hand and a fistful of reluctance in the other, I peered cautiously into Seminar Room number 4; the place where I was suppose to spend two full hours unwillingly writing a full-length essay using my hand on a topic I don't give two flying fannies about. One of the contestants was already there - last year's First Second Runner Up. Her promptitude and the business posture she adopted in her seat spoke rather assertively of her determination to stamp my ass out this year. Me, with my just-got-out-of-the-bed-which-I-was-in-since-last-Tuesday hair, caffeine tremors in my fingers and buzz tics in my cheeks, was heckuva lot less formidable sight to look at.

I popped right in the back and wordlessly studied the participants that came in after - all of them looked a lot more better for wear than I was ("a wreck" describes me best). I was a bit surprised that lingghezhi, Stephanie and that smart specky bloke from Batch 19 were some of the people who I would have to contend with this year, since all they had to fight for the glory of their class last year was a Malay girl who wrote for 30 minutes, and then left for the Maghrib solat. What a disgraceful time slot to hold the competition! Racism, that's what it is!

That Malay girl didn't join this year though - she probably figured that half an hour is one-and-a-half hour short of sufficient time to write a masterpiece. lingghezhi looked to be a real tough nut to crunch. Considering my beaten up shape of mind, a chimp at a typewriter would probably cream me too.

Then in a replay of last year's amateur writers' smite-down Dr. Surekha Bhat sauntered into the room and everyone hushed up like in anticipation of certain, terrible doom.

"Humanity in Medicine" she wrote on the chalkboard, and remarked crisply that we have two hours. Then she left. I think everyone was a bit stunned for like 5 seconds after.

Shit. I'm not very good at medicine, to be honest (watch out, future patients of mine!) and I've never been particularly humane either. "This is a damn stupid topic" I said aloud but no one took notice of that because they all have already started planning out their essays. I craned my neck and took a gander at Miss First Second Runner Up's manuscript, and found that she already had this octopussy mind-map thing drawn out.

Fifteen minutes into the competition, I was still wrestling with my blank manuscript and my brain - which strangely, for reasons unknown, kept replaying scenes from previous episodes of House over and over again. That's when that biggish Seychellois girl I mentioned in my previous post walked into the room as cool as a penguin in a freezer, glanced at the topic on the board and remarked, "I can be creative with that!" Way to go. Psyche me down more, wontcha. And before she settled into her seat, she asked one of the other participants to lend her a pen. Oh Em Gee. How much more nonchalant and confident can one get? I actually felt my butt deflate and me sinking into my chair.

By the time I wrote my first word, most contestants have already filled up half a page. I think I'm pretty screwed this year. Oh well - no use crying over a flat butt. Here's my piece. I think I deserve "A+" for effort. It's hard to write when you keep thinking that the paper in front of you looks remarkably similar to a white, fluffy pillow,

2nd of January, 2008

Dear Diary,

My name is Julie and I’m 12 years old this year. I’d ask you to introduce yourself but you can’t talk back very well, can you? You’re just paper stuck together between two covers – but I guess you would have to do. Dr. Colbert gave you to me yesterday because I told him I was lonely and that I kept wishing that I have somebody (or something!) to listen to my thoughts. I have so many, many things in my head and if I don’t let them out somehow, I think I might just explode. Dr. Colbert comes by every morning for a few minutes to keep me company but he’s a terribly busy man. Mommy visits every evening, right after she gets off work at the canning plant but I find it so hard to talk to her. All she does is hold my hands and cry every time she looks at my face.

I have no Daddy.

I wish Dr. Colbert is my Daddy because he’s such a clever man. And nice. And he always brings me Terry’s books for me to read. Terry is his son. He’s about my age.

I remember meeting Dr. Colbert for the first time when I had to come live here at St. Marcy’s General. He told me I was ill and needed "chemotherapy". He taught me how to spell that – he knows so many big words. That’s why I said he’s frightfully smart.

I’m glad he gave me you.

29th of February, 2008

Dear Diary,

Today is my birthday. Mommy brought brought me my favourite cake; Strawberry Chiffon from Constance’s Confectionery! I asked her if I can have a kitten for to play with here in my room but she said she couldn’t afford it - what with all the bills she's paying to make me better. She promised that she’ll get one for me next year though.

Albert, the boy in the bed next to me, said that Mommy was lying. He said I am going to die here.

I don’t believe him, of course. He’s just jealous that his mother doesn’t visit him as often as mine. Besides, I remember asking Dr. Colbert if I am going to die, and he smiled at me saying 'Not if I can help it, Julie'. I know that he will fix me. He’s a very clever man – didn’t I already tell you that before?

I want to celebrate my birthday in the park next year – under the sun and blue sky and cool, green grass between my toes. I have enough of hospital rooms to last me for this life and the next. And the one after that too.

I shall call my kitten, Colbie. I think it’s a nice name.


21st of March, 2008

Dear Diary,

I think it’s unfair. It’s unfair that I can’t go outside and play, or do anything at all. It’s unfair that God gave me two legs, and then take away my strength to use them. It’s unfair that I have to stay in this smelly room. It smells of disinfectant and sick people. I used the think that it was bad enough that I’m always weaker and smaller then the other girls in school, that I’m never as pretty as they are - but now it’s just so much worse.

I yelled at Dr. Colbert this morning. He’s the reason I can’t go home. All he wants to do is keep me here and give me horrid "chemotherapy". And now "radiotherapy" too. I thought all these therapy things are suppose to make me better – Dr. Colbert said they would. But HE LIED! All they ever do is make me throw up. I’m feeling so much sicker than even before I came here. Mommy won’t take me away either. She just keep telling me 'Soon, baby'.

I cried last night. I cried because my hair won't stop falling out. I know I'm not beautiful, but I have always thought that my hair is the prettiest part of me. Now that's going to be taken away too.

Why is God killing me? Why does he heap all these misery on me?

I hate him. I hate him I hate him I HATE HIM!


29th of March, 2008

Dearest Diary,

It has been nearly three months since I came to St. Marcy’s. I really, really miss home. Do you think God is keeping me here because I said nasty things about Him before? I’m sorry I did that now. I promise that I’ll never EVER do such a thing again. I promise I’ll always pray and be a good girl from now on. I’ll promise anything – anything at all. Just let me be well again, please.

I finally said sorry to Dr. Colbert for throwing a tantrum and yelling at him last week but he told me not to worry about it. He said he was not angry at me in the least bit. He told me he understands just how difficult everything is for me and that I am a very brave little girl.

I’m feeling terrible pain these days and I can barely even hold this pencil steady now. The medicine Dr. Colbert gave me to keep the pain down doesn’t seem to work so well anymore. I asked him to give me more but he said that my body can’t take so much of it. God, it hurt SO BAD!

Yesterday, Dr. Colbert and his friend, Dr. Thomas was talking softly between themselves beside my bed while reviewing my charts. They didn’t know this, but I wasn’t really asleep. I think they were arguing about something or other.

Dr. Colbert said a lot of things but I only caught one word because the pain medicine made me drowsy. I remember it because it sounded weird and I’ve never heard it before. It sounded like "Youtha-naysia".

I asked him what that word meant today and he was a little taken back at that. He asked me where I heard that word from and I lied to him. I said that Nurse Grace said it while talking to Nurse Eva. I didn’t want him to know that I’ve been eavesdropping on their conversation.

He wouldn’t tell me what it means though.


4th of April, 2008

Dear Diary,

Albert died this morning and they covered him completely with a blanket, and then took him away. To be honest, I never really like him. He’s always so morbid and he kept saying horrid things. But I’m going to miss him anyway. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because he understands that unhappiness I experience with my sickness – because he has the same illness too. Now, there’s just me in this room. I never realised that it’d be so quiet without Albert’s breathing sound coming from the bed beside mine.

I talk a lot less to Dr. Colbert and Mommy these days. I’m just so distracted by the pain. It’s in me all the time, never letting me rest. Sometimes, I wonder if it would be better for me to just die. Do people still feel pain after they are dead?

I asked Dr. Colbert if there’s anything he can give me to make it all stop – to put me into a sleep I’ll never wake up from.

He said yes. I think he must have really felt sorry for me at that moment because his eyes watered a little behind his glasses. I must have looked really pathetic then – with my few single strands of hair left on my bare scalp and my small, broken body. And my crying because of the terrible, terrible, terrible pain – and for it stop.

I asked him if he would give it to me but Dr. Colbert said it isn’t "ethical" to do that.

Is it "ethical" to let me suffer this way?


6th of April, 2008

My Dear Best Friend and Diary,

I can’t write a lot because I can barely move my hand. The pain. But it’s going to stop. Tonight. Dr. Colbert whispered to me that he will make it go away but I must not tell anybody.

I said 'Thank you, Daddy'. I don’t know why I said that but it just came out of my mouth. Dr. Colbert burst into tears and hugged me close to him. It feels so good to have a Daddy – even for a minute. Daddy’s going to make the pain stop tonight.

Tell Mommy that I’m sorry for making her cry everyday. Tell her I said goodbye, and that she won’t have to cry anymore after I’m gone.

Bye bye, Dear Diary.

For the more perceptive of the lot of you, you might have noticed that I have loosely structured the essay after the Kübler-Ross model - more commonly known as the "Five Stages of Grief". I picked that up from the first episode of season 2 of House, "Acceptance" (House called it the "Five Stages of Dying"). They are Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance.

I had problem deciding initially which perspective I wanted to tell the story from - the doctor, the mother or the dying girl herself - but I finally picked Julie. Had I chosen Dr. Colbert's PoV, I would have to spend a lot of time struggling to decide what sort of cancer the little girl would have, describe the accurate clinical course of said cancer and maunder on the tedious technicalities of treatment regiments just to make sure my essay is convincing enough for the judges, who would most definitely be part of the faculty (doctors, the lot of 'em) - time I don't have because I already took half an hour to do a big fat load of nothing.

Also, the Mom's side of the story didn't seem to interest me the least bit.

Writing from a 13 years old girl's perspective allowed me to hand-wave all the medical bits aside. Plus, I would be required to dumb down my choice of words as well - something I don't really need to work at considering my desperate need for relief from my prolonged sentence of forced consciousness (that's a whole mouthful of bull saying "lack of sleep"). Besides, her limited vocabulary allowed me to insert that minor plot wink about mercy killing.

I have a terrible sensation that I was not sticking close enough to the topic while I was writing. My interpretation of the title was much more subtler than my entry last year - and I think, a lot less clever too. But then again, if you're broadminded enough, what I wrote is precisely that too; the humanity in medicine. I took the most serious theme in the line of health care - Death - strip it of its IV lines, life support and expensive scanning machines, and gave my take on what's beneath it all.

How come I got this feeling that someone else wrote about the same thing? And yeah, I know my essay sucked pig.

All hail King of Crapland,
k0k s3n w4i