Screaming but No One’s Listening

Thursday November 29, 2007
 

One thing that is seriously beginning to irritate me to no end is when I read stuff like this in the Western news and literature:

“I wish that those in the Muslim community who stand for moderation, reason and logic would stand up and be counted as opposed to letting the extremists always have their voice
.”

Excuse me! Have you not been reading the Guardian? The paper is littered with Muslims writing to say there’s a whole bunch of us out there who extraordinarily moderate, and so extraordinarily normal that is boring. There’s a huge group of Muslims who are religious and yet, fancy Daniel Craig and watch Doctor Who. A whole bunch of Muslims who are just like you. We don’t partake in terrorists activities and we certainly never approve them. We speak about it, we speak against it. In fact, recently, a bunch of us moderate Muslims have taken to blogging about how much we abhor terrorism and soon, we’ll take to standing on top of roofs and shouting at the top of our lungs about how much we are anti-extremists.

The thing is, being normal and moderate NEVER MAKES THE BLOODY NEWS. So yes, we do stand up and we have been waving our hands screaming “Count us, count us” but DAMN YOU, you just ain’t listening, are ya? You’re content in not knowing that there are moderate Muslims out there so that you can brandish and attack the Islamic faith as extremist.

***

Now today was a very bizarre day. I was adding all these lovely classmates of mine to Facebook when I saw that one of my classmates’ father’s name (in Malaysia, we don’t really have surnames, it’s a first name and dad’s name) reminded me of my granduncle. Coupled that my granduncle is actually an avid writer, I had a suspicion that my classmate might actually be my aunt.

Long story short, she was! Now how bizarre was that? Here you are, fooling around with someone, talking a lot of bullshit nonsense until you realize they’re actually related to you? Eep!

In other news, I’m feeling pretty confident about my writing as days go on. I actually feel a lot more in control of my words and the characters I put to paper. It’s like being in a whole new plane of thought. And get this, instead of mumbling to people that “I’m a writer” and then looking at my shoes, I can actually look at people in the eye and say proudly: “I’m a writer”

And the best part of this course? Realizing that all writers are insane. It used to be so lonely being insane alone. Now I have fellow insane people out there.

I’m off for the evening. Plenty to write this evening. It’s the last day of my course and I want to get cracking on some more writing for the tutor to look at. It’ll be a long time till film school (definitely decided this is where I want to go) and better squeeze the most out of it. =)

Posted 11/29/2007 at 6:23 AM
Advertisements

Because I Write

Monday November 26, 2007

 

I am free because I write.

I feel so lucky and privileged. It’s going to be hard to return to the real world after this. I’m going to miss writing nonstop, almost 12 hours straight. So much for being tired. It’s writing boot camp, tortured and broken at first, and then you’re a believer after all the pain.

It feels f***ing wonderful.

Posted 11/26/2007 at 9:52 AM

To be or Not to Be

Sunday November 25, 2007

 

The cat on my bed is meditating with ease, calm and poise, qualities that I could only dream of having.

I am currently stuck on thinking up of three controversial issues that would make a great idea. I can’t think of one. Either I have been shacking up to my liberalism ideals far too much that I’ve become completely blase or nothing in this world fascinates or shocks me anymore. People are cruel, yeah, yeah. Whatever.

Six more days. I’m going to miss this course when its over but I’m not going to miss how tired I am at the end of everyday. It certainly is one hell of an emotional roller coaster, coaxing my inner creative self to be more disciplined. There are times where I’m worried than in my efforts to be more disciplined and technical, I’ve lost sight of my own creative prowess. I think writers beat themselves up more than directors or actors do. Hehehe.

Is that controversial? Can I put that down?

Meh. We’ll see. Six more days till I’m a short course NIDA alumni. I’m going to miss this but at the same time, I kinda miss my corporatey part of me, working on business concepts and strategy. This too shall pass and I shall come back to the real world.

Posted 11/25/2007 at 10:56 AM

Listening to the Creative Self

Monday November 19, 2007
 

First day of the course, and am pretty much frazzled out. Not much happened today aside from creative exercises. Today was one of those exercises day where you were supposed to let your heart and mind flow, and just write.

But plenty of food for thought. One of the things I did recognize about myself today was how impatient I am. I have these ideas on what I want and how I want to see through them. Sometimes, I wish I have the maturity to stand back and take a breath and observe. I want to be right and good the first time that I don’t slow down to let the mind and the soul do its job.

I remember my music teacher once said that I lived life on the fast lane, I wanted things and I wanted them now. And that drives me to work and work and push and push for things. But she said that I needed to chill and reflect. Which, if most of you know me in real life, is very difficult. I’m deeply ambitious and its something I feel inside my bones.  As David says, patience is a virtue that I do not have.

But today, when we talked about creativity, I realize I need to slow down or I’ll miss the finer things in life. I need to be able to listen to other people’s work and not feel intimidated. I need to focus and listen to my inner creative self regardless of others around me. I need to hone what I already know instinctively and work it into paper. I need to believe more in my skills and not depend on validation from teachers or fellow peers. It’s not a race, it goes beyond that.

To realize it’s not a race means to slow down. Like yoga and meditation, gaining so much more by slowing down.

Tough. All this from half a day? Yeah. It’s definitely one of those courses.

Posted 11/19/2007 at 6:17 AM

I is Scriptwriter?

Tuesday November 13, 2007
 

Guess what?!

I GOT INTO THE ASTRO NIDA SHORTCOURSE FOR SCRIPTWRITING!

OMG!

I’d like to thank my parents for being all supportive, Eizwan for staying up with me till 3am to edit, my friends who were confident that I’d get into the course….

Posted 11/13/2007 at 6:42 AM

John Simm as the Doctor? No Wai!

Tuesday November 13, 2007
 

This rumour is as implausible as it gets. But if it’s true, can this girl be any less happier? A combination of both John Simm and Doctor Who. I’d die happy after the first episode airs in 2010.

Wait, 2010. Scratch the dying happy. Doctor Who in 2010 is like years away. And that means no David Tennant. No David Tennant? The thought of the Tardis without David Tennant is pretty heart-wrenching. Coupled with this sad violin music that’s currently playing on my iTunes, I’m about to tear up now.

Excuse me….*sniff sniff*

Posted 11/13/2007 at 6:39 AM

Fairness and Equality

Sunday November 11, 2007
 

A few months back, I came up with a profile, well, a profile of sorts detailing the weaknesses of my family. We all bitch and moan about certain things in life, and one thing you’ll eventually notice is that the bitching and moanings correspond to a value that you hold dearly.

For instance, my dad bitches and moans about people not doing things right. He’s ex-HR and an ex-engineering so processes are dear to him. He cares about processes. So I said to him, “That’s your problem, you think people care.”
My mum, on the other hand, is an incredibly creative person who adores thinking up of new solutions. She gets frustrated with people when they sort of just give up when a problem is presented to them. Callously, I said, “That’s your problem Umi, you think people think.”

My aunt once overheard me saying this and asked me what my problem was. “All of the above?” she asked, laughing. I shook my head, no. I’ve thought about my problem for a long time and I’ve come down this: “I think people have ethics.”

Or more specifically, I think people care about ethics as much as I do. I am not ashamed to admit, that I care about political correctness and ethics more than most. Most of my articles that I mark as favourite tend to centre on the debate of ethics, of what is right and what is wrong. I want to do things the right way, morally and ethically because it matters to me, not because it’s the in thing.

When I come across something plainfully unethical, honestly, I lose it. I know it is a bit presumptious of me to behave in such a manner. Why should anyone subscribe to my beliefs and my values? To each his own.

This is where I believe the law and the constitution comes in. We all have various values and various morals that we subscribe to. As an economics and a politics student (lawyers, be forewarned, this is a political interpretation, rather than a lawyerly one), I subscribe to the belief that the law is a set of rules that has been collectively made and implemented by society (or representatives of society, democratically or by merit chosen) to uphold justice, fairness and equality. We may not agree to every law written but we abide by it as citizens and our duty as citizens. Because we believe that there is more to the law than just the written word. The law encapsulates the values of justice, fairness and equality.

What am I getting at? Oh yes, the law encapsulating the values of justice, fairness and equality. When you work with the law, be it as a lawyer, or an upholder of the law, the police, a referee etc, it is more than just the technicalities of the rule that you must abide by. You must imbue the spirit. You must take it in you, function by it and live and breathe it. It is not enough to be seen as acting fair or ethical. You must be seen and act in fairness.

In the wise words of Sam Tyler, as the police, you must be whiter than white, you must uphold the law and do things the right way

It goes beyond the job and the law, acting in fairness. We live by a code of conduct, ethics and morals that are unwritten but is the glue that holds society together. I can always give more candy or more money to my favourite niece over my other nieces and nephews, but is that fair? It’s not against the law but it’s certainly unfair. I am discriminating someone based on my irrational like for a particular child. Wr I can always pop over to Eizwan’s place and start raiding his fridge because his mum told me to make yourself at home. Is it wrong? Yes. Against the law? No.

See where I’m getting at? Ethics and morals, fairness and justice are what keeps a community functioning. They’re not always right and they have to be challenged and corrected. But it is a spirit that must be imbued, cherished and upheld.

When you’re a party to the law, you are the deputy to the law. The end does not justify the means for you. It certainly doesn’t. The spirit of right and wrong has to go all the way because you have to be fair. You just can’t be seen to act in fairness and not act fairly. You can’t get a fair result by acting unfairly. Think Gene Hunt. Is he right to be beating someone into a confession? No. He got results, but he did it the wrong way.

That’s why, I find it ironic when someone in a position of power, like a regulator or a referee starts screaming of the top of her head about abiding by the law when she herself is unable to do so, even in the smallest things. Do you not think the smallest thing matters? Sure you don’t kill, but when it comes to playing unfairly, you certainly don’t mind because it ain’t against the law. Who cares if the spirit of it all is unfair. But does it matter? Oh yes, it does, incredibly. In your arrogance, you forget that if you are unable to imbue the most important value that makes you a wonderful regulator or referee, you lose. People look up to you and society will mimic your own lawlessness. And you scream and shout again, wondering why things never change for the better.

My mistake is losing it when you display your arrogance, berating me for not understanding. It is not I who do not understand. It is you. It is not me that should cower in your awesome anger. It is you who should be pitied for not ever understanding the game in the first place.

Posted 11/11/2007 at 10:22 PM