w.I.b:warung ikan bakar:
Harap-harap INI KALILAH !
Saturday, July 30, 2005
The importance of language
Probably not the best person to preach about the importance of mastering your language, but I strongly believe (therefore I post this) that we need to have decent mastery over the language of our daily business.
And in Malaysia, the young generation of Malaysians desperately need to improve their English. Most are brilliant in Mandarin and Bahasa Melayu, but the standard of English is disastrous.
A freshie in my college was asked this question during orientation week, "Minister Nazri called you a RACIST. What do you have to say about it?" He kept quiet.
"Do you know what is the meaning of RACIST?"
"Then go and ask your fellow coursemates!!!" The senior was almost furious now, not at the freshie lack of response, but the horrifying truth of the poor vocabulary of the student. A fresh undergraduate not knowing a relatively simple word 'RACIST'.
Worse, when the freshie asked a coursemate about the meaning of RACIST, the coursemate confidently answered,
"That one lah,...you know...like Michael Schumacher la..racing mah...He is a RACIST la..."
If English is the business language of this country, then we really should improve. It is ridiculous that medical students have to struggle with the pronunciation of simple words like 'privilege', 'nevertheless', etc.
1) Dad, why the UMNO people talk so much about the Dasar Ekonomi Baru as if it was forgotten? Is not the government still favouring the Malays a great deal. Ah Kor's interview was rejected but his Malay classmate flew to Ireland last month.
2) Dad, what did the people in Terengganu do until they hate him so much? Is the giant 'Teko' so dangerous? I think it was pretty nice.
3) Dad, all the newspaper showed the lady minister cried. Why did she cry?
4) Dad, why the UMNO people talks as if they are side-lined when it is so obvious they are treated like first-sons of the country? Dad, did you not pay as much tax to the government as the UMNO people ?
5) Dad, why they talk about special privileges for bumiputras but Ronnie Benson, my Sabahan friend did not get any scholarship ?
6) Dad, dad, do you plan to leave the country someday?
7) Dad, if I go to work in Singapore next time, should I become a Singapore citizen too?
Just now, I brought my mom to TGV Ipoh to watch WAR OF THE WORLDS. I was looking forward to a good time.
They laughed at the Nokia Cinema Ad. I thought all of them understood the message because they laughed.
The basic rules when watching movie in a cinema are basically simple:- 1) Phone on silent/vibrator mode 2) Do not talk on the phone 3) Do not be fashionably late 4) Do not chit-chat during the movie
But it all went wrong from the start of the movie. People was commenting loudly how ugly the amoebas look like.
For the whole first 30 minutes, there was a traffic of latecomers.
Later, babies cried. I wonder why there are people out there who wants to bring infants to watch a movie at night. Shouldn't they know that these younglings should be sleeping, or getting fed? Shouldn't they know that as parents of such young people, they should sacrifice cinema time when they do not have a babysitter and resort to DVD instead? How can they concentrate with their babies crying anyway? And don't they have the slightest thought that the crying could also disturb others?
Then suddenly, a Chinese song tune rang out while Dakota Fanning and Tom Cruise were running from some tripods. And, I heard a voice of a Chinese lady, loud and clear, telling someone over the phone about somebody's recent surgery and about somebody else and something. I gave a loud 'Shhhh!!' twice, and 'Excuse me' once. But still, that lady hidden in the dark continued to blabber.
Having watched movies in TGV Klang last year, I thought the Klang hokkien people are probably the most 'pariah' kind of audience. Tonight, I found out that Ipoh people have reached a record-low. They are equally bad, if not worse.
The movie was about 6/10, but the audience got a 0/10.
Probably, we need cinema marshals in places like Klang and Ipoh to educate the people on basic manners. Nokia ads may be amusing, but sometimes I wonder if these people are actually just laughing at the funny cartoon without really understanding the sarcastic message.
1) I am back in Ipoh and finally I got a haircut that I needed badly. Then my father revealed to me something rather amusing - that he nearly named me Foo Chee Ming which in Chinese it sounds and reads just like the famous Vietcong 'Ho Chi Minh'. Anyway, if you don't know by now, let me thell you that I share the same surname with this illustrious communist and also the current president of 'communist' China, Hu Jin Tao. (Tumpang glamour je,hehe...)
2) Kerajaan langit clampdown. I believe this people are not a threat to the peace and wealth of this country. Using force and the law to overturn their beliefs is a very lowly and most likely to be an ineffective way. I do not know this Ayah Pin, but definitely he is less a threat to us compared to some corrupt Ministers and Umno-putras.
3) The tauke is thinking about setting up a project named "The Desperate FInd The Tauke a Girfriend Project", after numerous interrogations from all angles about my not having a girlfriend. Some are even going into the realm of suspicion that I am actually interested in guys instead of girls.
New undergraduates came in yesterday. In a peculiar way, I always feel a tinge of envy thinking about them because they have a new clean slate to start with, and with wisdom, they have a chance not to screw up or make things better. Unlike old seniors like me. This reminds of me of a blog entry I wrote last year.
To all my juniors, here's what I think....
Entry - November 2004 .....Walau bagaimanapun, I do think that UM, despite being a very rigid and stunted university in many ways, is still a place potential enough to grow great minds, and admirable characters.
The soil is ready, the water too, it is just that the sunlight is rather poor, and the weather bad. But if God and ourselves say grow! We shall grow!!
So, how do we create an enriching university experience for ourselves despite all the shortcomings, dead ends and wrong impressions? Here’s a list of what I gathered from my 4 years of observation and interaction with people who have managed to have a fulfilling university life-
i. Do not be shy!!!!! Thicken your face. Do not be too timid to ask, to question, to initiate, and to pursue.
ii. Stop being a snobbish jerk. Stop being communal. Stop being a racist. Dump all the racist and uninformed nonsense that your uncles, aunties and some seniors told you. In short, keep an open mind. Question your own pre-formed conclusions.
iii. Get to know the foreigners- the Sudanese, the Japanese, the Iranians, the Iraqis, the French. If you can find them la….
iv. Learn another language. Learn a new sport. Learn to dance. One thing one should acquire in university is a good learning culture.
v. Read Read and Read – read beyond your prescribe text. Read Farish Noor. Read from the internet. All the superb discussions in those superb blogs – Jeff, Najah, TVSmith, the late Johan Ismail, etc. Read the mainstream media and be critical about it. See the spin, see the lies. Read the Economist, discuss about the Economist.
vi. Get to know the East malaysians- they are the best!
vii. Seek information and inspiration beyond your lecturers. Go for open lectures, seminars, free speech outside the university. Hear the activists talk, hear the opposition speak their mind, also hear the BN politicians and hear the lies and hear the spin. Learn to recognise crap in their speeches.
viii. Write write write !!!!! Speak up!!!! Share your thoughts!!!! Criticise and anticipate criticism!!!! Listen Listen Listen!!!
ix.Continue your zeal from pre-university days, do not forsake clubs and activities just because you have done it all in secondary school.
x. Aim for the sky stars so that at least you’ll get the moon.
xi. Find a good set of campus friends who are also looking for some real deal in education.
xii. Know God and seek God.
(Any suggestions to the list?)
If they are going to make our university to be like sekolah menengah, then we should unfreeze our childish expectations of such institutions. Seek it out on our own, with a healthy appetite for what is wise, what is stimulating, what is enriching, what is meaningful and what is true.
Do not let your schooling interfere with your education – Mark Twain.
__________________________________________________ Semoga berjaya to my fellow junior undergrads!