Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Some things just get old

Probably it is just me. I get tired of the same old things. I used to enjoy checking the website that brings together all Malays living away from home country. it was exciting to sit and chat and share our different experiences in our lives adopting our new environment. It was then a place where we share our sorrows, praying and comforting each other giving and having a shoulder to cry on. We extend our moral support. We encourage each other. We were a bunch of friends or more like sisters and brothers.

Things started to change when a group started to dominate the website and of course there were those bad apples. Those religious chauvinists with holier than thou attitude. There were then the subtle rivalry to control the website. The website began to stink and I no longer visit that place where i used to be so much at home. I missed those friends that I made and there are still some I still keep in touch.

I use to blog hop quite a bit, but recently i realized that i only go to some selected ones. I no longer want to know what people write or do that has no connection to my thinking. I do not deny though that I learned quite a bit about human behavior.

I realized that I must have had a very protected life. I am thankful that while growing up, I did not have to struggle for survival. I did not feel that i was deprived of love from my parents or my family even though most of my teenage years were spent in a boarding school. perhaps I was not looking for anybody to blame for my failure or shortcomings. It is so easy to blame someone else for our short comings or failure than to ourselves.

Many people blame their parents, their governments, their schools or everybody else rather than themselves for their predicaments. Actually it is an individual choice to be what we are. If we chose a cup instead of the coffee then do not blame the cup if the coffee is stale.

When I decide to marry someone out of my league (i.e. not wealthy), many question my choice. I did not feel I need to explain my reasons. However suffice to say I enjoy a most sensational flavored coffee in an old mug.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Seven Career Killers by John McPhee,

Avoiding these seven deadly sins will also help individuals balance their "whole life" and assure they are ready to take on new workplace challenges as they are presented -- and execute them well.

Deadly Workplace Sins

At least seven "deadly workplace sins" detail key emotional offenses professionals should avoid at all costs to better assure upward career mobility. A few common sense tips will help aspiring pros get on the path to the ever-elusive paycheck promise land.

First, there's pride. Far too many who experience "workplace wins" take full credit for these achievements, regardless of any support or assistance received in the process. What often goes unrecognized is that people around, and especially below, the serially solo-successful resent the egocentricity, and may actually begin to actively undermine that person's efforts in the future. While one's pride wants all due recognition, a team philosophy can build the grass-roots support that can fast-track a career. Indeed, a dose of acknowledgment of and appreciation for one's peers and subordinates, so they may share in some of the glory, can go a long way to foster one's long-term success.

Moreover, while it's OK to recognize other individuals or organizations as they achieve, lamenting "what should have been yours" can be destructive and can adversely impact your own ability to focus on the job tasks at hand. Becoming envious of others in the workplace can sabotage your self esteem, which is one vital characteristic of every successful worker or executive. Rather than being envious, let the accomplishments of others become motivational fuel for your fire in working toward your own successes.
Anger is another motion that needs to be held in check. Begetting nothing but disagreement, dispute, tension or conflict, anger provides no benefit in the workplace. There is simply nothing productive about anger, which impairs one's objectivity, poise and self control. Don't let a bout of righteousness damage your reputation and image in the workplace. It's fine to feel passionately about your job or a project at hand and to disagree with others, but learn how to channel those emotions into actions that will work to your benefit in the eyes of others -- especially your superiors -- rather than against it. Those prone to angry outbursts rarely get promoted; they are seen as being poor leaders who cannot inspire or motivate others.

One's selfish desire for "more, sooner" is what motivates many in the Western culture to achieve their career goals. But taking this notion to the extreme can and will be self defeating as core values become misguided and life becomes unbalanced in the process. The road to success requires a long term approach in all aspects of one's job duties. Those laser-focused on quick, short-term gains may do well for the moment, but will be ill-prepared to take things to the next level.
At the other end of the spectrum, sloth, or simply put, complacency and laziness have no place whatsoever in the workplace -- especially for those with high aspirations. Expecting one's past achievements and successes to carry them forward in their long-term career is imprudent. Today's uber-competitive global marketplace ensures that only those who continue to grow, evolve and make fresh contributions of value will succeed. In a global environment where outsourcing is becoming a norm, everyone at all levels of the employment "food chain" is now replaceable. So treat every work day and every project as if your job, and your future at large, depends on it. It very well may.
Many individuals move up the corporate ladder so fast that they actually end up failing as a consequence. More isn't always better -- especially if you're not ready for the challenge at hand. It's important to ensure that you are not only professionally ready to take on a new and bigger challenge, for which expectations are equally bigger, but also that your personal life is ready for the new demands and strains to be placed upon it. Achieving career success also includes maintaining a life balance, and a misplaced professional desire can create a backlash both at home as well as amid peers for your perceived obsessiveness.

At times this can spill over to lust. An overly intense desire for what others have achieved at work, or being chronically dissatisfied with one's own status, is a surefire career killer. Spending an inordinate amount of time fixated on what you don't have rather than what you do will foster a bad attitude and negative overall demeanor.

Above all, one's overall "presence" in the office plays a big part in who gets promoted and who doesn't. No matter how ambitious, it's prudent to be present and make the most out of your current position at this moment in time. Organizations recognize and reward those with a good attitude who make the most of a situation. Winners recognize other's success with sportsmanlike conduct, while at the same time exhibiting an air of confidence that they, and their team, will realize their own great achievements.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

My rememberer

I notice that my forgetter is working overtime now, but my rememberer is working good as well. They are however work best at different time zone.

I forget what i wanted to do 3 minutes ago, but I remember clearly what happen when i was a child. Is this normal?

As i was sitting at some nice comfortable place, I entertained my wondering mind. I remember those days when I was a child. There was this incident so long ago that made me so humble and taught me a very good way to appreciate what I have.

I was at a boarding school, and during term break we got to ride the train for 24 hours to get home for 3 weeks. During those term break i always hang out with my former primary school friends. I would cycle for a few miles just to visit them and they would come and sleep over as well. I don't remember sleeping over too much, but I have friends slept over at my house (grandparents) all the time.

There was one time I was invited to break fast and dinner at one of my close friends house. I was happy to go and i guess my friend was happy to have me as I hardly go eat dinner at peoples' houses very often. I was humbled to see what was on the table for breaking the fast. There was only 2 dishes or was it 3. I remember there were 3 fried fish, a bowl of sayur lemak kangkong and sambal belacan. The rice came and it was cold and it was the leftover. I loved the food, but i realised that there were 7 of us. They wanted me to start, so i did, luckily I could compute that the 3 fried fish were not meant for me to get one for myself. They have to be shared between 7 people.

I went home after that and told my grand mother about how meager the dinner fare was. There was no kueh and sweets for breaking the fast like we had at home and we had to share 3 fish between 7 of us. I think my grand parents were a bit excessive with food on the table especially during the fasting month. We never have leftover rice for dinner, it had to be freshly cooked. We usually have a few dishes on the table to go with the rice. There is normally be a curry (meat or chicken or fish) Fried fish or chicken or beef and vegetables and sambal and acar rampai or acar ikan (ikan masak cuka). There is always the dadih manis or agar-agar for dessert. During the fasting month there would be table full of kueh2. Buah melaka, tepung bungkus, plus the usual desserts and of course there would be pisang mas and tembikai.

My grandmother would outsource the making of these kueh2, she would provide the flour, sugar and coconut to neighbours and in the evening, we would have them for breaking fast. My grandmother would cook all those beef, lamb, mutton, chicken and fish dishes. I love pesamah kambing or lembu. I love kari kepala ikan plotan and isi.

Well, what i was getting at was that in the late 1950's, 60's and 70's, there were a lot of poor households in my village. I never realized that until that dinner at my friend's house. I did not know that i had such a privileged childhood.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

My rememberer is broke (broken)

I got this in an email.

My forgetter's getting better,
But my rememberer is broke
To you that may seem funny
But, to me, that is no joke

For when I'm "here" I'm wondering
If I really should be "there"
And, when I try to think it through,
I haven't got a prayer!

Oft times I walk into a room,
and Say "what am I here for?"
I wrack my brain, but all in vain!
A zero, is my score.

At times I put something away
Where it is safe, but, Gee!
The person it is safest from
Is, generally, me!

When shopping I may see someone,
Say! "Hi" and have a chat,
Then, when the person walks away
I ask myself, "who was that?"

Yes, my forgetter's getting better
While my rememberer is broke,
And it's driving me plumb crazy
And that isn't any joke.


Monday, January 14, 2008


I feel challenged to write my thoughts on hijrah. I feel i need to write about it in relation to everyday life. I am a lazy blogger, but i blog hopped to many. There are blogs that are matured and makes a good reading as well as enlighten my outlook of life. There are blogs that the owners say they write to vent their bottled up frustrations, there are blogs that serve as a life journal to the owners and of course there blogs that are seriously political.

I do read the column di celah-celah kehidupan in Mingguan Malaysia and I feel that those who shared their stories are brave people. They found an avenue to share their unhappiness when there in no one close enough would listen to them. Most of them are women who are mistreated, abused and are left in despair.

Most of the stories are failed marriages. marriages that were built in good faith in the name of Allah. Expectations at the beginning into the marriages were high. The couple that tied the knots were expecting happy ever after.

Women, especially think they can live on love alone. They will marry for love, they stay in a broken marriage for love, they hurt their parents for love. For time in memorial, love does not hold a lot in a marriage. Responsibility, compassions come first in a marriage. Anyway, I almost forget, of course the reasons for getting married itself.

I do wonder if those women did any homework about marriage before they plunged into it. The first thing a person should do is to understand and read about what constitute a marriage, what bind in a marriage. No no no..don't listen to all the uztaz giving the ceramah. Go to the our reference Book. The al-Quran. Go read the surah al-Baqarah. Go to the hadith, but first go to the main source. Understand what marriage is all about. Understand what responsibilities that come with it.

Know the person you want to marry. Know his aspirations, know his bad habits. Know those stuff that would make your marriage gets a hiccup. It does not work when you say you want to marry a religious person, and the guy is so engrossed in his religious thingy that you think would help you. That is a big no no. You have already chosen the wrong guy. You already know that you and family will never be the first in his life. it is himself that is of utmost important to him.
A very selfish person is staring straight into your face.

What is so wrong with relationship is that most women think they can change their spouses character with love and devotion. Get this, that never happens!

For you all the women out there who want a partner in life, use your heads first before plunging into the imagined happy ever after relationship.

I went into marriage with my eyes wide open. I married very late though because it was my choice. I did away with all the cravings that young and impressionable women have first.

Money checked
House checked
Education checked
Car checked
High lifestyle checked
Good job checked
Work fulfillment checked
Travel checked

What i was lacking was a companion to enjoy simple life. The life i would like to share minus his baggage such as debts, emotional and responsibilities other than towards me.

Found one, not rolling in green, but have enough to enjoy the little things together. Simple things that make a day worth counting the blessing.

Friday, January 11, 2008


Hijrah means different things for different people. To most, it was the year the great prophet pbuh moved from the oppressing society in Makkah to a more receptive populace of Madinah. It was the main turning point for the prophet to preach Islam the religion of submission to the highest authority, the one and only Allah. He brought light and knowledge to the people of Madinah and a good government to a multi ethnics, multi religions and multi culture population of the place. There was freedom for the people.

Hijrah to me means moving on from a stagnant life to a more enlighten way of life. I do not mean in religious pursuant only, I mean in our everyday life. The real life. Allah has given us a mind that is so dynamic that can think and make decisions. Allah has given us the al-Quran to read and follow the good path, the correct one, yet the good brain Allah gives us, we misuse it. We build barriers around us. We short change the goodness in the Quran. We use Allah's words in vain. We use Allha's name in vain.

There is no my way or your way in practicing the religion. There is only one way, Allah's way. It pains me to see all those who called themselves good Muslims, actually are not practicing the religion the way it is supposed to be. There is no compassion in their dakwah, no compassions for their wife and children. They are actually very selfish individuals. They wanted so much to be with God, they forget their wives and children. Their duty in this life.

Just because you finished reading the al-Quran 10 times, doesn't mean you know anything about the content or the knowledge in it. You can tell people that my daughter can memorize surah Yassin at 6 years of age and be so proud of it, but do you realize that a child of that age can hardly comprehend anything. To me it is better that i take the Quran out read it a few sentences and understand the meaning of what i read. It takes us a few months for my husband and me to read the first chapter of the Quran with the translation and the explanation to grasp the meaning of the chapter. We still refer to it when we want clarification. At least the part of marriage, property and responsibility are quite clear to us. For us we just want to understand the basic teaching of the great religion. We leave the finer points to those who are more knowledgeable than us.

Well, to me hijrah is a time for us to look aback at our lives and move forward. Have a freedom to think and not be scared to move on.