Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Heroic Malaysian

One of the news articles published in The Star newspaper today sickened and angered me tremendously. Robbers apparently gunned down a Bah Kut Teh seller, Soo Lee Choo, because she poured a bowl of hot soup at them. The bravery act was supposed to ward off the robbers but subsequently costs her life. People like Soo should and must be commended for her selfless and bravery act. Her sacrifice of her own life should not be in vain. The culprits must be brought to justice. The robbers must be arrested, tried and sentenced with maximum punishment as provided for in the court of law.

Our society today is filled and inundated with selfish people and bloodsuckers. It took me awhile to realize that there is still hope in this society after reading Soo’s great story. Even greater is the fact that she was somebody's daughter, wife and mother but died for people who were not related to her.....

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Word of the Day is TONSILLITIS

This morning I went to see a doctor in Puchong. Told him I had a pro-longed sore throat. He shoved a flat stick into my mouth and pointed a torch light into the gap. He was like….

”You have tonsillitis. How on earth could you have waited for a week to come here? Isn’t it painful?”


I told doc, “Of course it is, but I was lazy”

I don’t even know what’s tonsillitis. So, he explained it was a bacterial infection. It is an inflammation of the tonsils, the fleshy clusters of tissue on both sides of the back of the throat that fight off germs that enter the body through the mouth. The tonsils become enlarged and red, and can be coated with a yellow, gray, or white substance. Typical symptoms include sore throat, fever, swollen glands in the neck, and trouble swallowing. Exactly what I kena the past week. That sort of explained why all the salt-gargles, honey drink and other unprescribed medicine did not seem to work. Well, the panadol did give a little bit of relieve for a few hours before the swallowing becomes painful again.

Doc then said….”You need a premium antibiotic to fight the bacteria since it’s spreaded over a wide area now. You know, the word "premium" is automatically associated with high cost. Doc showed me the exclusive packaging "Augmentin 625mg". Ooo, very impressive packaging, really! Doc said, "don’t worry, you’d be alright within a day or two”

Doc said “You better take a day off because the antibiotics will make you weak”.

Then, I was adamant,”I don’t think that’s necessary”

Doc seemed surprised, “I noticed you have turned down the MC I gave you previously and this time too. Are you really that busy? You never know, maybe your tonsillitis came from your stressful workload.


i told him, “No la, just don’t want la. Btw, can I continue with my sports activities?”

Doc said, “Anyway, I'll just issue you the MC, in case you need it.”

Then he was telling me about Chua Jui Meng’s story about sweating it out if you are sick and all that political stuff, he was saying that I should not work out if I’m still unwell because my heart may apparently fall off position if I did….haha..or something like that “

“What sports do you do?”, he asked.

“Triathlon” , I said.

He was stunned for a moment. Isn’t that a very strenuous sports? You’d probably got yourself infected while training. Or maybe you wrecked your throat with grilled stuff on friday? Did you take any? I don't remember having any grilled stuff except that I was finishing Han's "chicken soup for the soul" and spicy spaghetti.

I think it was from training then, from the swimming pool last week.

Doc thinks some rascals who had skin infection went on swimming in the pool and people like me kept sucking up those bacteria till I'm down with tonsillitis. So, Irene is innocent from all charges of infecting me with her cough and all.

Doc said I should be up and running in a day or two. That was nice to hear. So, when I was waiting at the dispensary, the nurse whom I’ve befriended since my previous visits, told me that the “premium antibiotic”, apparently from GlaxoSmithKline costs RM50 for 7 tablets!! That's really premium. I have not even included other medicine which would be my staple food for the next few days. I guess the bill shot up to about RM90.

I took the medicine as soon as I stepped into the car. I think Augmentin worked pretty well. The soreness on the throat slowly diminished and I believe the battle of the bacteria will be putting up the white flag soon and I should be back with my KFC Bandito Pocket and McDees prosperity burger in a few days…..fingers crossed. Even if those are not achievable, at least let me be well and up for the coming New Year’s Eve party….pray for me....

Christmas At SFX

This year’s Christmas was celebrated at the Church of St Francis Xavier. I went to the Midnight Mass extremely early to avoid the jam. Yah, it takes a kiasu to know one and how one operates.

Happily, merrily, taking pictures away, I spotted a mice trying to hide away from my sight. Perhaps it was the movement to hide away from me that got me his attention. It was pang cheng, a “mangsat” fella by nature. I spotted him and Yen at a corner of the church and waved them over. I think I kinda spoiled the fun for them to surprise me. I knew Han was around the vicinity of the church too. Well, I waited until Han came out of nowhere but before that, continued taking pictures of the crib.

The saying, “once beaten twice shy” seemed to work on me but it was all done in good faith. The first time was my birthday where the two of them including my new pang cheng also sprung into action. It’s one of my most memorable birthdays. For me, I never believe in quantity of friends celebrating, but quality. Sounds like a cliché but true.

The Christmas celebration started off with some powerpoint presentation of how Christ came into the world. Then in between there were choirs who sung the psalms. Seriously, I preferred last year’s presentation even though I believe all of them should be commended for all the hard work they put to make it all happen that night. Maybe it’s just personal preference or maybe I was down with sore throat, apparently infected by Irene.

The night moved on with the celebration of Mass. I am glad non-Catholic friends joined and witnessed the whole event with me in this meaningful night. Shirley, Boon, Yen, Han and Houn were there but I never had the chance to ask them if they enjoy themselves or if they have any questions about the different rituals involved. Perhaps the answer may only come when I invite them again next year….hahaha….that is assuming all of them are free and available again on the night of Christmas eve.

The mass ended sharp at midnight but most of us were hungry, so we went for food like bloodhounds except for Boon and Shirley who needed to catch their plane to Bedfordshire.

First at a Chinese restaurant right next to the La Salle Secondary School. Santa let them off early, so they were closed. Next, we went to Old Town for the Char Kuay Teow and some Dim sum.

Talking about dim sum…. Irene managed to get herself fleeced by an unruly fish ball cum dim sum hawker who charged RM1.50 for a fish ball that taste like a steamed meat ball ala try-hard keropok lekor style. It was a sickening experience because she not only bought some pau, lohmai kai but also 6 of those balls!!! You just have to try it to know the gravity of being conned under moonlight robbery.

Hungry stomachs fed, it’s time to head home. Next morning have to wake up for morning Christmas mass mah…..

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Teresa Kok did the right thing...

Forget about politics or my political affiliation. There’s nothing to do with politics. Coincidentally I may be staying in her constituency, Seputeh, but it has no bearings to my beliefs on this week’s hot topic – the nude squat. I strongly support her cause for human rights, justice and dignity and let me reiterate today’s topic….she did the right thing!

There were many letters to and from the press in support of her cause. One very good article came from Datuk Wong Chun Wai with his ending remark “Let's fix the problem, not fix somebody”.

Certainly if Teresa Kok (TK) were to be punished for what some myopic politicians believed that she has circulated pornography, then all other ministers involved should also be punished because TK merely brought up the issue on mistreatment of human dignity and never spoke a thing about the race or religion of the nude squat victim. Many other ministers have also pushed the buttons and “sensationalized” the nude squat saga. So why only punish TK? What is the rationale?

There are things that are difficult to fathom at times.

What about the recent case of a lady who gave bride and later took the matter to court. She was sued instead.

What about the recent case of a politician uttering, “You tak suka, you keluar dari Malaysia!”, apparently to another Malaysian?

What about the sparring match of calling each other “Monkey” in the august house of the parliament in the presence of visiting overseas delegates?

Where have all our Malaysian values gone? Are we becoming hooligans with more advanced technologies, taller buildings, bigger airport and better infrastructure systems? I really have no idea. Sorry for the red herring but if you ask me again, I still think TK did the right thing.

Now you tell me…

Chin Woo Biathlon 2005

I had to attend Gary and Pooi Fern's wedding on Saturday night in Ipoh. Had to drive back to KL on the same night so that I could participate in the Chin Woo Biathlon which I have forgotten I have signed up earlier. I reached KL at 2am and had to wake up early for the biathlon event. It was tough.

Raymond (Dr. Hee) was parked a few cars away from my car. The long driving fatique was overwhelming me. But I didn't think much of it. Just wanted to complete the race and get on with it.

The race started with the Kids and Veteran category. We started at 8.30am. Had to do a 800m swim and 7km run. In Chin Woo's swimming pool, it's a 25m pool, so we had to swim 32 laps. You'd be lucky if you didn't lose count. Anyway someone would tap your shoulders with a swim board to indicate that you have to swim your last 2 laps. For me, the marshall pressed my head because the board wasn't able to get my shoulders. Pretty ironic isn't it....

My swim time was 14 minutes 42 seconds.

Someone told me I was 4th to have came out from the pool. At first, it was difficult to treat the exhaustion, but when you are in a race, it's a different story. Adrenaline rushes through your blood and you have to do what you have to do....RUN!!!!! It was difficult to get your legs on the ground especially when you are shuddering from imbalance right after coming out from the pool. Jason, one of the Penguins' friend and cameraman was clicking away with his camera. I wish I could strike a few pose but i was literally "too occupied" with the ambience and people around me shouting..."Ok ok.....hurry!!! Alden you are 4th!!". And yeh, you just don't want to be the anti-climax to put on a slow-mo and strike for pose...heck no!

Off to my running leg. It was a dreadful started. I couldn't just create a good pace in the run. Maybe still tired but as the mileage picked up, I could feel lightness and started picking up speed. I think I did a 5-minute pace on average.

I clocked a total time of 49 minutes 34 seconds. So, my running time must have been in the region of 35 to 36 minutes.

I am pretty happy with my achievement this time, I feel I have redeemed myself from a bad marathon race in Singapore and considering from the tiresome journey few hours before it. Dr Hee finished 4th and I was 5th though we had the same first two digit finishing time. I am also very proud of Chee Wee who did his first biathlon and achieved a presentable position.

Photos courtesy of : Jason, KC Leong and Dr Hee