On commercials…

Here’s a particularly cute one, from Air Asia…

It is amazing to see that commercials now are not just about selling a product, but also a lifestyle… Anyways, I had fun watching it, and I hope you do too 🙂

Can’t wait for Gangly Bro to have his benefits spill over to the rest of the family – Jasmine.

On driving…

It’s been four days since we picked up my new car. Well, semi-new at least, seeing its a second hand car and all. But it is an upgrade from the little entry-level, fuel-saving, boring sedan I was driving before…

The new car looks like a bulky, boring Mum-taxi from the outside. Don’t be fooled by the mundane-ness of the look – it really is a joy to drive… Boxer 2.0-litre, turbocharged engine made by those people in Japan who are obsessed about the performance of their vehicles. All-wheel drive with active LSD means it takes corners like a cat on speed. On the highway, the car glides to over 160km/h effortlessly and joyously. Literally a joy to drive…

Yes, I’m very much a car person. And yes, I love to drive. Preferably along winding country roads with no one in sight for endless miles with the promise of a gem of a find at the end – perhaps a quaint little restaurant or chalet to rest for the night. And yes, I love fast cars, that handle well and is comfortable to be in.

Spent the weekend trying to keep my hands off the wheel. Woke up on Sunday and the itch was just a little too much to take. *sigh* I guess my favourite Giraffe will be the victim – dragged him out of bed and went on a drive to nowhere. Grabbed a late lunch, and continued driving…. By the time we got home it was late afternoon, and my mind was already scheming where to drive to next…

I guess I won’t be blogging much these few days… Can’t get the thought of driving out of my head. I’m already scheming for the long weekend ahead, probably something that involves a long drive through windy country roads, where we’ll stop for the night at some little chalets of some sort, and maybe come home in time for work on Monday…

Ohh, how I love smoking the boys with their noisy exhausts sounding like fart pipes 😛 – Jasmine.

On allergies…

As Muslims who own dogs, I’ve had my fair share of people telling me its ‘haram’ to own dogs. I have no idea where they get this idea. There’s an even larger bunch of people who behave as if I have a man-eating monster at the end of the leash, and all they want to do is get away from it… *sigh* All the furkids wants to do sometimes is to get some pats on the head and a scratch behind the ears…

Its funny to see people’s reaction to my furkids. There are times it takes a whole lot of effort for me to just smile, nod politely and walk away when they start talking religion about dogs. I’ve given up explaining that owning dogs is not haram, and that there are clauses to be followed.

There are even more times when my furry kids behave better than the ‘skinkids’…. They’re jumping all over the place, bouncing off the walls, throwing food, throwing tantrums, running over people’s feet in their toys and rides, screaming bloody murder, biting and scratching other kids and adults alike, and generally behaving like lunatics – while all this is going on, my furry kids sit quietly beside me and watch the hoolabaloo with a bemused expression on their faces. I’m sure if they could talk, they would ask me why the human kids are behaving like that…

And then there’s another type of people – who think they know all about dogs and start making assumptions about mine. “Does he bite?” Anouc is a girl, and WILL bite your hands if you hand it over, and don’t think she would shower you in love and gratitude. Who the hell are you, anyways? Wouldn’t you be worried if a stranger decided to fondle your boobs / balls / butt without giving notice?

“Wahh… look like wolf. Does he bite?” Layla is a girl, and she’s a husky, so that is what she looks like. And she wouldn’t bite if you stick your hand out, but Anouc might 😛

“Wahh… this one someone gave to you? Not cheap mehh? Got another one?” Feliks is NOT cheap, he is a fully-pedigreed dog, that was rescued of the streets. He wasn’t given to me, we’re just giving him a good forever home. Don’t ask me for a free pedigree dog please, I don’t do charity. If you can’t afford to buy a pedigree dog, do yourself a favor and don’t get one. Their upkeep and maintainence is not cheap. Unless you want to go the way Feliks’ previous owners did, and throw him out to fend for himself when it was too much to keep him…

Anyways, I’ve gone off-tangent. The subject of the day happens to be this clip, a friend called Puteh put up on her blog… Thought it was interesting, since finally, a Muslim scholar thought it fit to explain why it is not haram for us to own dogs.

Doesn’t matter to the dog whether their owners are Muslims, Jews, Taoists or Christians or whatever, all they want is your love and affection, and for you to be a responsible owner – Jasmine.

On acoustic sounds…

We had dinner at No Black Tie last night, my Giraffe and I, which was a quaint little joint serving Japanese cuisine to go with their jazz repertoire, and Monday nights are reserved for acoustic performances. Last night’s performer happened to be an upcoming local singer/songwriter who is awfully talented…

I apologize for the low resolution videos, but they were made with a simple point-and-shoot camera and did its job. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did…

Awfully talented, these two boys. I will let the videos do the talking…

The first one is a song called “For Her”, the original song that drew me to start listening to Reza Salleh in the first place.

I’m not quite sure of the title of this one, but I’ll call it “Don’t Let Me Down”, till I get the correct title…

The last video is of Rashdan Harith, another talented singer with his very catchy tune, called “Gadis Jalanan”.

You can find out more about them at their MySpace pages :

Reza Salleh

Rashdan Harith

Thank you, my darling Giraffe for indulging me last night. Its been ages since we had a romantic date like that, isn’t it? Much love and affection 🙂

Looking forward to Moonshine this Saturday – Jasmine.

On pms….

Sigh…

Biting people’s heads off left and right again today… And it really is PMS bugging me for the past three days or so – mood swings and bloating and the pain – the works this time around… How I so don’t miss having the ‘aunt’ visiting…

Methinks ice-cream would be good. Or that heavenly chocolate cake from Delicious. Or that milk shake from the Blue Cow. Till then, I’ll keep my head low so no more biting people. I’ll play nice…

Can’t wait for dinner with Giraffe – Jasmine.

On racing…

The past four days (precious weekend included) was spent at the KL Velodrome, as I became part of the Commissaire team managing the National Track Cycling Championships, the first of the series for the year. We spent the whole time racing, figuratively and literally – against riders and the organizers, against the clock and the weather and general stupidity, or rather lack of sporting discipline…

The last four days has been wet, to put it mildly. Actually, a better description of the weather would be – hotter than hell in the morning, followed by downpours in the afternoon that could have floated Noah’s ark had it been in KL. As the KL Velodrome is an open-air track, we were subject to the vagaries of the weather, and the minute it rained, the race would be postponed. Postpone the race we did, repeatedly. To the point it felt like we were waiting for the rain to break long enough for us to race a little bit, and then back to waiting again for Mother Nature to be kind…

When the weather was clear, we raced to finish the multitude of events… With dark clouds rolling and roiling above our heads throughout, it was important to hasten everything. And this was where we encountered another snag – racing against the clock and the weather, and the worst of all, against human ineptitude.

Riders and coaches and managers were never ready on time, we were perpetually waiting to start the race, to finish medal presentations, to finish press conferences… While time kept a-ticking, and the rain kept on coming… And riders kept disappearing, bicycles still being repaired or replaced, and officials never at their intended posts… Typically, we were approximately 20 minutes behind schedule at the start, and by the end of the day, the delay would have extended to perhaps an hour or more behind schedule.

I wonder if these riders and their managers / coaches / mechanics are aware that had they been at a tournament overseas, they would have been disqualified on tardiness. I wonder if they are aware that becoming world-class athletes demands precision and self-control and discipline, and whether they have been taught these values… I wonder if they were taught to respect officials and judges and the audience, and how to behave in the public eye, especially with regard to how to deal with the press corps.

Perhaps its time that our athletes are exposed to more than just the training to make them physically able enough to race or compete, but also to be taught the finer points of being an athlete that represents our country – proper sporting conduct, press relations and what not, ehh?

It’s not just about the racing, boys…. – Jasmine.

On imperfections…

An uncle of mine, who I admire greatly, sent this link to me.

Watching the short clip brought tears to my eyes, and tugged at my heartstrings. I used to think that Giraffe’s snoring was an issue that wouldn’t ever be resolved. But over the years, I’ve learned to sleep to its comforting lullaby, and without it, find sleep elusive…I guess I’m not the only one with that thought 😛

Someone once told me, that a marriage is a beautiful thing between two imperfect souls who strive for perfection in tandem. I’ve found that after our wedding, as cliche as it sounds, our relationship has improved by leaps and bounds. Yes, we’re both imperfect. And yes, we’re striving for perfection, which will never be attained… But along the way, we would have learnt our lessons and become better people…

My mother told me, a few days before the wedding, to make a list of the three things I disliked/hated/couldn’t stand about my Giraffe. And then she told me to forget the list. Forgive him for his flaws, and love him for what he is… For all the times I’ve not listened to you, Mum, this one I would take to heart…

I suppose it’s all about learning tolerance, acceptance and forgiveness. For without it, a marriage wouldn’t ever work. And it takes work, real effort to stay in love with someone, especially when time has cast a patina of familiarity… And believe me when I tell you, we’re really working for it…

My darling Giraffe, don’t ever forget that I love you, and hope against all hope that you feel the same for me… Snores and all – Jasmine.