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Fri, Mar. 11th, 2011, 10:25 pm

Let us reflect upon the life of one Mohammed Salman Hamdani.

A graduate student, paramedic and police cadet. A man who participated fully in the life and culture of America, who played sports for his school, saw all the Star Wars movies. All his life he tried so hard to be an “all-American kid”.

And yet when 9/11 happened, people speculated that he had something to do with the attacks, as a homegrown terrorist and a Manchurian candidate.

Only in the identification of his body was he actually exonerated.

There was nothing wrong with Sal Hamdani. Any nation would have been proud to have had someone like him. There is, however, PLENTY wrong with a nation that people sacrifice their lives for, and yet rejects them as the Other, torments them, and holds inquisitions to demonize them, like the one the Hon. Rep. Ellison testified in, in return.

Reflect on thyself, America. God knows someone needs to.

Tue, Nov. 23rd, 2010, 01:13 pm

In light of the following thread, I need to remind myself that I’m naming a person, not building a Linux distro or customizing a Firefox browser.

No, an “everything on top” approach and a “bells-and-whistles” approach to naming is how we ended up with people who have 3 three-syllable-or-more names. It totally has to stop.

It also probably explains why parents subject their kids to extremely long and meaningful names, and then see their kids call the stout child “Bob”. MORE IS NOT BETTER, PARENTS.

Thu, Oct. 14th, 2010, 12:38 pm

So, there’s this tweet from Obefiend

The average malaysian sense of humour is bloody terok. Make political joke mad! Make sarcastic remark mad! Malaysian need to surf 4CHAN moarThu Oct 14 04:13:46 via MetroTwitEffi Obefiend Saharu
obefiend

Yes. 4chan (and what Obe probably means is /b/), is hilarious.

trigger warning: racism, outright misogyny, IslamophobiaCollapse )

Look, I get it. Malaysians don’t have a very flexible sense of humor. But seriously? If you have to use 4chan as the exemplar of humor, you’re so fucking deep in your privilege that you need that tunnel thing that rescued the Chilean miners to dig yourself out.

Edited to add: And then, irony of ironies, he posts this:

Thats why Malaysian are so miserable. But they laugh at racist stereotype comedy n slapstik. R we that UNSOPHISTICATED in our comedic taste?Thu Oct 14 04:15:43 via MetroTwitEffi Obefiend Saharu
obefiend

Seriously, man? Seriously? Have you ever been to 4chan? It does the occasional damn good absurdist comedy, but have you seen the bulk of the posts?

Thu, May. 13th, 2010, 01:36 pm
My Thoughts On May 13: Let Me Show You Them

This is part of the May 13 Blogswarm. Follow it on Twitter, Facebook or on malaysians here.

You know, I had an idea of a post out, but then I eated it.

Well, you know what. Whatever. Today’s May 13.

For those who don’t know: in 13 May 1969, race riot happen.

I don’t remember talking about May 13 as a kid. No surprise, really: I come from a hyper-privileged upper-middle-class family. I thought my parents were overseas, but no, it turns out that my mother was 15 and my father was 17 when the riots broke out, so they’d have been here when it happened. My in-laws were overseas at the time, I know that much; in a sad irony, my mother-in-law’s birthday is May 13.

I’ve never really talked to my parents about the subject. And I didn’t even realize, until a few minutes ago, that yeah, they would have been here, and that they would have memories of that experience, as it unfolded.

Isn’t that fucked up? A defining moment in Malaysian history, and I have no idea what my parents felt. Worse, I know for a fact that my paternal grandfather was in UMNO leadership, and my maternal grandfather was in the police force, likely in a senior leadership position, and likely privy to internal security matters. And none of their grandchildren know. I know I don’t. I suppose if I post this up in Facebook, my cousins would be able to tell me what stories they’ve heard. Hell, my mother could tell me. Either that or I’d get an earful for being so gauche as to publish this online, where “everyone can see”.

(yes, Mama, I’m putting that up. Yes, everyone can see. You can upbraid me later)

I have friends who’ve told me of stories their parents told them of May 13. One had a mother who was a nurse, who worked in HKL, and apparently witnessed the injuries of people who were caught in the violence. And of course the narrative is stuck in our national consciousness.

It’s really weird. I’ve heard from people who were alive at the time; it’s as if when they were children, the Malaysian people were united, despite race, despite creed, despite everything; race “wasn’t just important”, and we “respected everyone else, no matter what race or religion they came from”. Many of them say they had friends from different races and different belief-systems, and some still do. I know my parents did, and I know for a fact that they’d look at the kids these days and despair, because the kids today are so divided and polarized and hating on each other and members of “racist” and bigoted groups, existing as tools and thugs of the political elite. Not like them; not like us.

And I have a hard time believing that. Because seriously? The simmering tension that blew up in the late spring of 1969 had not sprung from nowhere.

I suppose it’s self-absorbed (as Hani would say it) for me to say this, but if I had to link the emotions people at the time felt to my own experience?

I’d bring up the recent Catholic Herald’s action in the Malaysian Supreme Court, and how my fellow Malays, people who prided themselves in being “moderate” Muslims, reacted. And how I felt when I realized that my fellow Malay-Muslims were far less moderate and relaxed than they and I had blithely assumed.

And then I realized that “those people” have always felt this way; it had been at the back of their minds, but never expressed until challenged, until pushed.

It’s not as if I don’t know what being pushed beyond my comfort zone and privilege feels.

So yeah. I don’t feel like I can buy the “May 13 was the beginning of our troubles” narrative. I think it was us, waking up, and realizing that we were less secure, less accommodating, and less tolerant than we actually believed we were. I think it was us — all of us — suddenly realizing that we had been pushed beyond our limits, and we had no idea that we had been, until the break happened.

And we’ve had 41 years to mull over the results of that. Or at least, my parents and their generation did.

There are all kinds of narratives that exist now, that have their roots or at least refer to May 13. Opinions on the NEP, for one — yet another child of May 13. There are two narratives about this: that the Malays need the NEP and similar protections against the rapacious and demanding minorities, who would swamp the Malays otherwise, and the opposing viewpoint, that the NEP was a tool used by the lazy Malays to oppress the Chinese minorities.

I have skepticism with both narratives. Because you know what? The fact that there exists a significant Malay professional class, today, is evidence against both narratives.

In a sense, the NEP is supposed to be a tool to break against economic privilege. I’m pretty sure I’ve never directly benefited from the NEP; my parents were able to finance my rather expensive education. But that’s because I’m a privileged man-child, see. I can say that. I’m not sure any of my peers can. I have friends whose parents were either rural working-class or just outright poor, and they managed to get a university education thanks to the policies of the NEP. And yet I also know for a fact that several of the policies that benefit me, unfairly, that aren’t open to some of my other friends, simply because of the NEP.

And you know what? I’ve been yammering on about this, and a friend of mine just sent a rather cranky email about May 13, and I was just hit by a sudden realization: I’ve been talking about it from the West Malaysian context. I was going to talk about this other point as well, and my friend just hit it home: May 13 is also about our national narrative narrowing down to, basically, the Malays versus the Chinese, along with the occasional Indian power-play.

The Western Malaysian Malay, Chinese and Indians. Everyone in the cracks? Everyone outside those definitions? Sidelined. It’s testament to my privilege how much I was talking about personal narratives, and it took an email from a cranky Sabahan to kick me to a bigger picture. And the fact is? We, as Western Malaysians? We don’t notice East Malaysia, and what the NEP and May 13 affects, or doesn’t affect, East Malaysia.

And there’s this part of me that wonders, really, if the narrowing or perspective was really a narrowing of perspective, or the realization that hey, you know what? Our perspectives are narrow. Was it always this narrow? Did we think about lofty things before something like May 13 or another disaster like this kicked our coconut shell, and we realized, hang on, we’re under a coconut shell?

Holy shit, this coconut shell is cramped. Why are we here again?

Thu, May. 6th, 2010, 10:33 am
Racist Douchebags Are Glad We Don't Know They're Racist. Let's Change That.

Basically, this asshole redneck teabagger council member named Clay Yarborough didn’t want a respected university professor to be allowed to be on the local Human Rights Commission because Ahmed is Muslim, and that means Ahmed is a terrorist and is only out to ruin peoples’ Human Rights. Or some nonsense such as that. It’s been going on for weeks now, and it’s an appalling testament to how racist and shitty Jacksonville can be. (Which depresses me, because I’m third-generation Jacksonvillian and I want to be proud of my hometown. There’s a lot of neat things going for Jacksonville, except that it’s mired in racism and religious bigotry.)

The post in UFB.

And quoted from the story itself:

Ben Warner, deputy director of the Jacksonville Community Council Inc., said he heard from many who said they just hoped the story wouldn’t “get out” of Jacksonville.

“Everybody is just praying, ‘Keep it off Drudge,’” he said, referring to The Drudge Report, a news aggregation site with a national following.

Let’s ruin Mr. Warner’s week, shall we? Spread the word.

Thu, May. 6th, 2010, 10:13 am
FILK TIEM

So a friend of mine posted a link to yet another comment thread with fail in it, and suddenly Britney Spears’ “Womanizer” began playing in my head.

What’s a guy to do but filk?

...yeah. >_>;;

ETA: WE NOW HAEV CHALLENGAR. Actually not la, but horusporus came up with an actual song that fits mansplainer better than mine. Go see!

Tue, Apr. 27th, 2010, 05:26 pm
Because This is FUCKING BRILLIANT.

No country for strangers.

No further comments from me.

Mon, Apr. 19th, 2010, 10:20 am
Sonoma County CA separates elderly gay couple and sells their home

I got this from karjack:

Clay and his partner of 20 years, Harold, lived in California. Clay and Harold made diligent efforts to protect their legal rights, and had their legal paperwork in place--wills, powers of attorney, and medical directives, all naming each other. Harold was 88 years old and in frail medical condition, but still living at home with Clay, 77, who was in good health.

One evening, Harold fell down the front steps of their home and was taken to the hospital. Based on their medical directives alone, Clay should have been consulted in Harold's care from the first moment. Tragically, county and health care workers instead refused to allow Clay to see Harold in the hospital. The county then ultimately went one step further by isolating the couple from each other, placing the men in separate nursing homes.

Ignoring Clay's significant role in Harold's life, the county continued to treat Harold like he had no family and went to court seeking the power to make financial decisions on his behalf. Outrageously, the county represented to the judge that Clay was merely Harold's "roommate." The court denied their efforts, but did grant the county limited access to one of Harold's bank accounts to pay for his care.

What happened next is even more chilling.

Without authority, without determining the value of Clay and Harold's possessions accumulated over the course of their 20 years together or making any effort to determine which items belonged to whom, the county took everything Harold and Clay owned and auctioned off all of their belongings. Adding further insult to grave injury, the county removed Clay from his home and confined him to a nursing home against his will. The county workers then terminated Clay and Harold's lease and surrendered the home they had shared for many years to the landlord.

Three months after he was hospitalized, Harold died in the nursing home. Because of the county's actions, Clay missed the final months he should have had with his partner of 20 years. Compounding this tragedy, Clay has literally nothing left of the home he had shared with Harold or the life he was living up until the day that Harold fell, because he has been unable to recover any of his property. The only memento Clay has is a photo album that Harold painstakingly put together for Clay during the last three months of his life.

With the help of a dedicated and persistent court-appointed attorney, Anne Dennis of Santa Rosa, Clay was finally released from the nursing home. Ms. Dennis, along with Stephen O'Neill and Margaret Flynn of Tarkington, O'Neill, Barrack & Chong, now represent Clay in a lawsuit against the county, the auction company, and the nursing home, with technical assistance from NCLR. A trial date has been set for July 16, 2010 in the Superior Court for the County of Sonoma.

Read more about NCLR's Elder Law Project.


Are you disturbed by the story of how Clay Greene was treated by the County? Please post this, pass it on, do whatever you can to help raise the visibility of what happened to Clay.

Also, please write a letter to the local paper, the Press Democrat (owned by The New York Times) asking them to do some investigative reporting on the Greene v. County of Sonoma case. So far they have ignored the story.

Send a letter to the editor at letters@pressdemocrat.com. Include the story and a link to this post.

Source

EDIT: Someone posted this petition to the Santa Rosa Press Democrat asking them to publish the story.

This shouldn’t have happened. They did everything they legally could to secure their rights, and the local authority still decided to screw with them because they could.

This shouldn’t have happened. Spread the word. Make them bleed.

Tue, Apr. 13th, 2010, 03:12 pm
On Screwing Up And Making Amends

I had an interesting conversation with fantasyecho with regards to this particular tweet, which sparked a conversation between her and the original tweeter:

image, followed by yammeringCollapse )

Seeking and making amends does not make you a better person, but it stops you from being a worse one.

Tue, Mar. 16th, 2010, 07:28 am
Conforming To The Observations Set In Godwin's Law.

Now let’s begin by saying that this is an incredibly crude argument, that it has a huge hole leaking on the side, and that is on purpose. There are more nuanced arguments out and about on the Internet about this matter: here, here and here.

If you wish to dispute the main thrust of the argument, please go to those places, rather than trying to attack an obviously-flawed metaphor like the one below, because if you do, I will stare at you like you’re an idiot, and say, “What, you don’t know how to read?”

Right. Now That’s Sorted Out…

Actually, I can’t have said that I’ve been following that issue much. Yes, I’ve been listening to fantasyecho, and yes, I was essentially trolling here, but pay attention to? Nah.

It’s the same flavour of fail as RaceFail 2k9, with the same players, more or less, over and over again: one angry white male (who, at least to his credit, has not gone into the realm of outing people’s identity yet, mainly because the community would probably rip out his guts and leave him to dry if he did, so don’t get any ideas), a whole bunch of clueless privileged people, and upset POC. It’s not even Electric Boogaloo anymore, it’s kind of straight-to-video now.

But then I stumbled across this particular paragraph, from Dr. Dru’s post:

Victorientalism, defined at The Gatehouse, is a neologism coined to try to capture steampunk set in non-Western countries (remember, the term “Victorianism” refers to Queen Victoria, titular head of the British Empire).

Wait, so Victorientalism isn’t about British steampunks attempting to co-opt “Oriental” elements in their lives, in a mirror to actual behaviour of the British during that said period? It’s the above? Really? It’s Steampunk, set in the Colonies, acted by the Colonial Masters?

You know what that’s like?

« MASSIVE METAPHOR FAIL ALERT »

Let’s say you have Dieselpunk, which draws inspiration from technology from World War 2. There’s a particular brand of Dieselpunk, let us say, that draws special inspiration from the German side — you know, magnetic mines, acoustic weapons, Thule-influenced magic occultism, badly-read Nietzsche, that sort of shit. Hell, let’s include the Japanese in this as well — samurai swords (despite the fact that the Meiji Administration probably thought that those swords were backward, and probably preferred Prussian-style ones), bicycles, that sort of thing.

And then you have a subset of it set it in the Occupied areas: you know, Poland. Nanking. Malaya. Auschwitz.

And then, you name it something that incorporates both Naziism and the Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere.

That’s how stupid it sounds, okay? That’s how bad the idea is.

«/ MASSIVE METAPHOR FAIL ALERT »

That is all.

ETA: And it turns out that not only is my argument flawed and overly-crude, it’s not even original.

See? See? I don’t even know why you’re here still. Go on, get out.

Wed, Feb. 3rd, 2010, 03:50 pm
Testing Out Posting Using LJ Chat

This is a test.

And yes, I am on LJ Chat. Haiiii! :D

Wed, Jan. 27th, 2010, 12:28 am
Sudden unpleasant realization after reading Hellboy: The Chained Coffin.

So like, as I was (re)reading this, I was struck by this realization:

There are thousands, millions of children left abandoned, year after year. They don’t have anywhere to go, anyone to go to. Some of them die of a variety of causes, from malnutrition to war to domestic abuse by people who are supposed to take care of them.

At least some of these children could be taken in, and “raised as one of our own”. I mean, that’s right, kan? I mean sure, Anung Un Rama said that they’d probably end up living under a log, but come on, that guy’s an insensitive dick anyway.

End result? You’d have a generation of children who’d be raised under your tradition, with love and possibly care and possibly initiated into your society and culture, such as it was, and man and fae would be joined in a way that no man or fae could have been joined before.

But no. Instead, you little fuckers steal someone’s else’s baby and replace it with a changeling, who, I understand, was supposed to pretend to die or leave the household after a while. Like, steal a baby that is very much wanted by their parents, so much so that they enlisted to Great Beast of the Apocalypse to get back their child.

Who then gets into your business and inadvertently starts the chain reaction that ends with King Dagda getting stabbed by one of his subjects, to die, with the fate of the Fae in the hands of some bloodthirsty thing in a box.

My Lord Dagda…

Why are your people so fucking stupid?

Wed, Dec. 30th, 2009, 05:50 pm
Goodbye, goodbye.

A friend of mine passed away today.

…Actually, that’s not really true. He and I did interact once or twice when I was in the Malaysian “blogosphere”, and when I got to Facebook I friended him and harassed him as well as I could, but… we weren’t friends.

We chatted in comments around the Internets, we didn’t get along all the time, but we didn’t loathe each other, but we weren’t friends. I actually don’t know what he thought of me, even if that mattered, or even if he did think about me at all.

The only thing we had in common was that we both had a beef with another blogger who was, frankly, an asshole. But that was four years ago, and who cares about that shit anymore?

I remember giving him advice on how to approach clubbing. Pretty stupid fucking advice, as it turns out. And I think telling him what he should drink, when he was old enough to drink. Which was also pretty stupid, because it turned out that he had a hollow leg, and could outdrink the Orz.

But yeah. He’s passed away. Gone. Just like that.

He’s five years younger than I am — three years younger than my brother. From what little news I’ve heard so far, from he died from an accident.

If what they say is right, then I’ve seen this happen before… but never to me. I don’t know how to feel about it, except sad.

He was five years younger than I was. And now he’s gone.

Thu, Dec. 17th, 2009, 07:45 pm
Now YOU Too Can Listen Intently to the News Without Wanting to Cry or Kill Everybody in This Country

So, like, remember this post?

Here’s the Malaysian version:

Silliness beyondCollapse )

That’s all. Post links to games that you’ve done, if you’ve done any. If you have any further phrase additions to the game, please let us know in the comments.

Have fun! Hope you don’t get a free stay at Hotel Kamunting!

Credits

fantasyecho, N.S. and Y.M. played a pretty big part in adding terms and helping out. Thanks guys, you folks rock!

Wed, Dec. 16th, 2009, 12:35 am

So LiveJournal wanted to make gender mandatory in account creation, and planned to remove the [Unspecified] option from the gender choices — you could only be male or female, and you HAD to choose.

The change is no longer occurring, but I found the idea that it managed to go so far rather a bad idea — after all, while I don’t mind telling the whole world I have a wang and would like to keep it that way, thank you, I don’t necessarily think other people need to be obligated to tell me what gender they identified with.

So I sent them this feedback through this service:

Feel free to use any variant of the above. But try to be polite. The people going through feedback aren’t the decision-makers — as a former service desk dude, please spare your vitriol for the ones who made the policies and decisions, not the poor bastards who have to deal with the flak.

Mon, Dec. 14th, 2009, 05:53 pm
For yeloson and fantasyecho: Actually Playable Racist Bingo.

Based on yeloson's post here and this image.

http://u.nu/8jw74

It works. There's quite a list of terms in here -- you can click on the "edit" link at the bottom to see them all.

What it doesn't do is save your card or keep track of it, but I figure it's a step up from the static images that people bring up.

You can build your own cards here. It's pretty robust, as far as I can see. You'll need Javascript for the page to work properly.

Now all that's needed is a way to save session data and to link individual cards to a single event / page.

Mon, Nov. 23rd, 2009, 02:24 am
Writing Out The Demons: Muslims, the West, Jews, Mahathir, Me and Privilege.

My head’s a roiling, seething, boiling mess, and as far as I can see, the trigger for it was this article.

It’s really boils down to: “This world sucks, I wish I wasn’t here”.

Thu, Nov. 12th, 2009, 05:29 pm

I have done a terrible thing.

I sent an email out to Sin Chew Daily and The Star Online, two Malaysian newspapers.

Here is the email.

To whom it may concern,

With regards to the following news story, published on the Star Online here, which I understand came from Sin Chew Daily:

http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2009/11/12/nation/5092076

I don’t have the original link to the Sin Chew Daily, I’m afraid. Nonetheless I’ve included the Sin Chew editorial email address, as it should interest them on this matter.

Please be informed that the original source of your news report was a 2003 tabloid news report, published by the Weekly World News, and is very likely not related to any kind of study, academic or otherwise, that occurs outside the fevered imagination of the Weekly World News contributors.

Here is the original source, from archive.org, since I do not subscribe to WWN, and Yahoo Enterntainment does not hold news reports after a certain amount of time.

http://web.archive.org/web/20031203050045/http://entertainment.tv.yahoo.com/entnews/wwn/20031127/106994520005.html

Far from me to say how you do your jobs, but I believe an apology may be in order.

Unless, of course, you are inclined to believe the Weekly World News. In that case, based on the image of the Weekly World News in Wikipedia here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Recentwwn.jpg), you may wish to believe that the Garden of Eden has been found, along with the actual apple core, and that there is a man who is, as per the the title in that image, all thumbs.

I look forward to hearing your retraction of the article and apology for posting that piece of “news”. Thank you.

Tariq Kamal

…yeah. >_>;;

And now... tl;drCollapse )

Wed, Oct. 28th, 2009, 09:53 pm
An Apology, And One More Try At A Difficult Subject

I shouldn’t have posted this.

Posting on the Internet should really be like operating heavy machinery. While the risk of getting killed or killing other people by what you write is extremely unlikely, you are still making a jackass of yourself, and you’ve very likely hurt the one thing that is impossible, or at least, incredibly difficult to regain: the first impression you make on people, and good-will.

cut for lengthCollapse )

Tue, Oct. 27th, 2009, 12:14 am

I HAVE MUMPS.

MUMPS.

HOW THE HELL CAN I HAVE MUMPS? THE LAST TIME I HAD MUMPS I WAS ELEVEN.

AND YET, I HAVE MUMPS.

I HATED THE LAST TIME I HAD MUMPS.

DAMN IT!

Sat, Oct. 24th, 2009, 04:34 pm
I am ill and febrile, and I am tired, so I it is my god-given right to be incoherent.

You know, dhobikikutti passed this along, and we talked about it.

I got as far as this:

Here, Banker speaks candidly to Charles Tan about his difficult childhood, his views on US and UK genre publishing, and his role as India’s “self-appointed poet laureate without a license.”

And then I closed the tab.

Luckily for you, I do not consider it my god-given right to FORCE you to read the rest of this drivel, so woo for you.Collapse )

ETA: Hmm. I’ve been told to get offline, since I am ill, and even friends who like me can’t understand what the hell I’m talking about.

And I’m finding that I can’t explain it, because really? When I said it was incoherent? It was. D:

So, okay. I’ll get some rest, stay out of the comments, because, high and incoherent as I am, I’m pretty sure I can get pretty upset, pretty fast, and this’ll deteriorate faster than… something that deteriorates fast.

So… yeah. Possibly Monday. Or earlier, see how.

META: Here's a better whack at the whole subject. My apologies for taking so long — it turns out that the illness wasn’t the flu, but something that took a little longer to recover from.

Sat, Sep. 19th, 2009, 04:12 am
'tis been a while since I spoke like this. Brings back memories, it does! Arr.

Arr, so here be an article at me fav’rite waterin’ ‘ole, Boing Boing about this piece of electronic amusement that those scurvy bilge rats at Channel 4 are throwin’ their doubloons at. It be called Smokescreen, and ye can ‘ave a go right here.

Anyway, this be what those scurvy scalawags ‘ave got to say:

Smokescreen is a privacy game for kids, it runs them through a series of clever online missions that serve to explain how information disclosed on social sites like Facebook can come back and bite you in the ass.

‘tis sounds like a fine piece of entertainment, aye? And ‘tis indeed a fine game, I’ll run through the first blighter who sez otherwise! Sadly, though, the game be sufferin’ from a par-ti-cu-lar fault what I like to call it’s “narrative tone”. It just gets on me booty, and iffen I don’t sail outta the waters I’ll be bound to KEELHAUL some poor lubber. And ‘tain’t fair, that. ‘tain’t fair.

And ‘tis “edutainment”. Arrrrgh! (spits)

Mind ye, it made me think about the addle-pated behavior of me fellow sailors, and, and ach, weellll… I ‘ave this idea, see.

Arr, arr, hear me out, mateys! Let us say, hy-po-the-ti-cally, that we have a piece of electronic sorcery that schools ye in the black arts of social networkin’. ‘tisn’t an easy task, if ye ask me!

So why not:

  1. Teach not only cabin lads and lasses aboot the dangers of the Black Art, but also include ye fellow sailors? (bein’ a treastise on matters like… och, I dunno, thievin’ o’ identity, gettin’ caught by the cap’n, not being a bilge rat on the seven seas and gettin’ marooned).
  2. Pile in more nu-ance in, an’ add more depth in how ye play the game (‘cause right now the game resembles the bastard lovechild of Monkey Island and Myst. ‘tisn’t pleasant to see).
  3. Make it easy for yer fellow pirates to devise challenges for yer edification!
  4. Arr, arr, make it a 1970s demake. Maybe make it look like an old Apple schooner per’aps. Or even a Xerox PARC sloop. Per’raps even a PLATO coracle? I ain’t picky.

So whaddya say, lads and lasses? Eh? A fine idea? Bilge?

‘ave a go at the comments. But talk piratical, aye, or it’s the brig or the plank for ye!

Arr.

Wed, Sep. 16th, 2009, 02:24 pm
Something About A Supermarket In Jalan Telawi, And Shitty Behaviors We Do When We're Not Noticing

I got this from one of my friends, Najah, who got it off one of her friends. While I don’t know who the actual person is, and “friend of a friend” links tend to be tenous at best, I have known Najah for some years now and I generally trust her on this.

Sun, Sep. 13th, 2009, 01:29 am

Scalzi makes a comment on people who don’t live in the epicentre of their industry, and are a little bitter over it:

Scalzi’s been known to make ill-considered comments like this before. I remember one he made during RaceFail, mainly because people (read: the Shit-Really coterie) were acting like dicks in his website, which is perfectly understandable, but like I said, ill-considered.

Frankly speaking though, Bierce_Bitchslap’s comments are eye-rollingly stupid. Oh noes, I’m in Ohio, my chances of getting prestige status in my chosen field of endeavor are vanishingly small, give up time already? Yeah, go do that, you pathetic excuse of a writer.

No, seriously. When you know at least two people who feel like they’re not getting a fraction of the attention for their work (either deserved or not), because they live in fucking backwater South-East Asia, you don’t really have a lot of patience hearing some whiner from Ohio complain that they’re being held back because they aren’t in New York or Los Angeles.

Mind you, Scalzi’s response, by invoking outliers like himself and Gaiman? Not very smart. Gaiman made a name for himself in the comics industry, just as comics were gaining traction as a serious art form in Britain. Scalzi? Well, he started out by serializing his work on the Internet.

Which is a pointer of how things will happen in the future, but seriously… how often does that work, really?

I think an issue I have, and I know at least one other person I know has, is that… well, if the publishing industry is supposed to be the gateway between quality fiction and fluff…

How the fuck can people like Stephenie Meyer and Chris Paolini make a living when authors with equivalent skill languish in obscurity?

Sat, Sep. 5th, 2009, 10:31 pm
THIS IS MADNESS! No, it's just a whole bunch of music videos. In Malay.

Okay, I completely blame fantasyecho.

Actually not true. I think I have this perverse urge to see how many minds will implode from all of this.

Ladies and gentlemen, apart from one exception, all of these are the byproducts of the Malay music industry in the 80s and 90s.

MADNESS LIES WITHINCollapse )

Mon, Aug. 31st, 2009, 01:24 am
Merdeka Poem Post (failtranslation mine)

songsang (buat tok awang)
a. latiff mohidin

maafkan aku
jika aku sering saja
berlaku songsang

terutama
di perayaan tahunan
seperti hari ini

apabila orang
bangun berdiri
aku duduk

apabila orang
bertepuk tangan
aku diam

apabila orang
ghairah berbincang
aku tidur

apabila orang
lepaskan merpati
aku taburkan padi

orang lain
telah merdeka
aku belum

maafkan aku
jika aku sering saja
berlaku songsang

aku sekadar ingin
mengingatkan

Sun, Aug. 16th, 2009, 02:30 pm
Someone Probably Talked About This Better Somewhere.

This has been in my head for a while, so let’s see if I can make a blog post out of it.

Problem Statement

There’s been a common thread that I’ve been seeing in a lot of racefail-style discussions, and generally discussions where one person is found to hold bigotry of some kind. Usually it comes in the form of outrage by the offenders when people call them out on their bigotry, in which they say that no, they aren’t bigot, « insert lame excuse here ».

I have this feeling that part of this problem is because there is a misconception of what bigotry is.

click hear to access the tedium...Collapse )

Fri, Aug. 14th, 2009, 11:14 pm

I didn’t want to do this — I initially wanted to respond directly on the comments section, but that required registering. I wanted to open this link on Facebook, but the summary text I wanted to put in ended up pushing the comment limits.

This is from Yahtzee’s Extra Punctutation column:

‘Hardcore’ doesn’t mean ‘Halo-playing twitchy fourteen-year-old douchebag.’ ‘Hardcore’ gamers means the gamers who get into it. The gamers who have gamed since 256 colors were a distant wet dream. The gamers who follow all the hype and who want games with depth and innovation. The gamers who read websites like this one and ultimately the gamers who give a shit.

He then continues to slag off ‘casual gamers’ so that bit’s particularly uninteresting, considering the fact that that’s been his main hobby-horse these past few weeks now at least.

Click to read a long-winded 'open' letter to gaming's favourite assholeCollapse )

Thu, Aug. 13th, 2009, 07:59 am
Writer's Block: Proven by Science

LJ::User=HASH(0x2af6fadb64f0)
Do you believe everything has a scientific explanation?
No. For one thing, there doesn't seem to be a scientific method of predicting how ideas spread and propagate; despite Dawkins' et al. claims that memetics is that particular solution... well, I'll believe it if you can provide me a testable hypothesis and experiment, boys.

Thing is, if I remember Donald Norman's The Design of Everyday Things, people construct mental models of how things work around them (the point of designers is that you should design to accommodate and perhaps work on these mental models). Science is one of these mental models; or, maybe, more accurately, a way of arriving to a set of mental models that explain how the universe works.

The thing about these mental models is, well, they're not complete. They almost never are. There comes a point where a particular scientific theory breaks down -- Newton's Laws don't work near the speed of light, and our current scientific theories break down past the event horizon.

Apart from that, science answers the "What" question really well -- what happens, how it happens, when it happens. But it can't seem to answer "why" questions. Mainly because "why" questions are hard to answer in any definitive way. It might just as well be a flaw in us that prevents us from ever truly being rational.

And I really don't like that title. "Proven"? Science's central deliverable -- theories that allow for prediction -- aren't even final, and yet the word "proven" implies that it is. What's up with that?

Tue, Jun. 30th, 2009, 02:19 pm
Liking Racist Shit

Inspired by this particular post, particularly this thread.

You know what? I’m going to make a confession.

Long text is longCollapse )

Wed, Jun. 24th, 2009, 09:04 pm
Writer's Block: Department of Burning Questions

In your opinion, what is the cutest animal baby?


OMG CUTE HEDGEHOD BABBEH

'nuff said.

Tue, Jun. 16th, 2009, 04:18 pm
In Which Farish Noor EPIC WINS again.

Some of you know who Farish Noor is — historian, activist, writer and regular contributor (I think only contributor) to The Other Malaysia.

To be honest, a part of me doesn’t like the guy — like many Malaysian writers, he seems to equate long and tedious writing with eloquent brilliance — hence my desire to say that overly wordy and ponderous Malaysian writers suffer from Farish Noor Syndrome. But unlike the wannabees, Farish does seem to strike gold all the fucking time. If you can get past the three-plus-syllable Latinate words.

So anyway. He starts talking about this particular event that you keep seeing whenever you have people who come together to talk about Islam and what Muslims’ roles are in its modern society. That is, when someone says, You are not qualified to talk to talk about Islam:

Long quotage ensues. Please read original article; I NEVER do Farish justice when I quote himCollapse )

tl;dr Want a universal religion? Allow universal access.

Mon, Jun. 8th, 2009, 11:16 pm
NPPB: neurotic pile of privileged bullshit

I was going to do something else, but while driving, I decided to take up that seed that fantasyecho planted in my brain and see what kind of fruit it would bear.

Whinge, whinge, whinge, someone give him a slap and tell him to fuck off, please.Collapse )

Mon, Jun. 8th, 2009, 10:13 am
Meme: Ganked from fantasyecho.

  1. Anyone who looks at this entry has to post this meme and their current wallpaper at their Livejournal.
  2. Explain in five sentences why you’re using that wallpaper!
  3. Don’t change your wallpaper before doing this! The point is to see what you had at the moment, not what you want to show people.

I’ll do one better and take a screenshot of my desktop, along with all the icons I have:

Image bomb; dial-up beware. Also HUEG IMAEG.Collapse )

At any rate, here are the sources:

  • Background taken from the Damask section of Inspiration Gallery. I took one of the black-and-white damask images and reduced the contrast and things with it, because I didn’t want the pattern to dominate.
  • The vertroramas are from here: Cooksey-Talbott Gallery. What I did was I added a three-pixel border, and then arranged them so they looked more or less uniform.

Why?

Well, because damask patterns calm me down, and for some strange reason so do these vertroramas. So I figured one day, hey, why not go all the way and make the Valium of all calming wallpapers.

And so I did. I like it.

Mon, Jun. 8th, 2009, 12:26 am
Look, I get it; his career wasn't all good. But seriously, guys...

Permit me a few minutes of bitterness and some exercising of privilege (many of you Americans will not feel it — I suspect the ones who will will be the Malaysians who have the misfortune to not be born Malay).

After all, if theferret can spend a so much time fucking up, and then fucking up the rectifying of the fuck up, then I can too, right? After all, I am not an institution.

Okay, this is about this.

Finish reading already? Okay. There’s a chance that my comment also already out of mod queue, so you can see what I said to all of this.

For those of you who got upset over the role David Carradine played in white-washing Asian roles in the late 60s. I will not deny that, nor will I deny that that has not stopped, what with Fight Quest and Star Trek and so on and so forth.

America has gotten better at it, too! Thirty years ago, when you said “Asian”, people thought, “zomg, yellow menace!” Today they think, in whatever fail manner that they do, “Eastern wisdom” and it’s more likely to see some Asian dude being awesome in martial arts and being wise beyond his years or some shit like that.

They’ve even extended it beyond you people of Far Eastern extraction and moved it to people of South Asian extraction. So you have Harold and Kumar! And Mohinder Suresh! Isn’t that nice?

Hey, look! You’re at the Magical Negro stage in thirty years! That’s pretty good. It took real Negroes, what, fifty years at the least? Now that’s what I call making up for lost time.

Incidentally, we’re still at the “mistaken as Mexican” level. How’s the weather up there?

Sat, May. 23rd, 2009, 12:40 pm
Crossposted here (http://is.gd/CzL9), but hey, jsyk.

Hay guise.

Just a heads-up to anyone who’s from the South-East Asia region (either geographically or by ancestry) who are sf/f fen, or fen of any kind, really: there’s a new community in town for you guys!

Okay, actually, two — one on LJ, the other on DW:

  1. sea_sff: Southeast Asian fans of sff.
  2. fen_at_sea: ASEAN and Heard

Check ‘em out!

PS: fantasyecho, you might be interested in this. Is disorganized and messy, but it shows promise, I think!

Mon, May. 18th, 2009, 12:35 pm
Pretentious, Sanctimonius Rubbish On My Thoughts On MammothFail (http://is.gd/AXjF).

To be honest I’ve been dodging this for some time now.

tl;dr crap followsCollapse )

Better you than the medium I love.

Wed, May. 13th, 2009, 07:00 am
You a fan of science fiction / fantasy? Then listen here:

Let’s make it really clear, people. If you identify as a POC/nonwhite person and you read or watch scifi or fantasy, give yourself a name check in this thread. I am particularly wanting shoutouts from people who do not live in the US and who have still managed to read genre fiction.

From here.

So, you know who you are. I’m talkin’ to you! Have you commented? If you haven’t yet, why don’t you go ahead and do that?

Mon, May. 4th, 2009, 06:00 pm
Why Malaysian History Is Shit, And No One Paid Any Real Attention To It.

So I was reading this article at fantasyecho’s blog, when hanishoney came up to me, looked over my shoulder, skimmed the article, and said, “Who’s that idiot?”

Please don’t get mad, fantasyecho! D:

Srsly please don't! I seriously am going somewhere with this!Collapse )

Sat, May. 2nd, 2009, 12:34 am
In a post that very likely is a triumph in irony over outrage, srsly.

Wait, whut?

Twitter’s meteoric rise to ubiquity is proof positive that the world, in all its complexity, is eager to embrace simplicity. Wielding more impact on social networking than most communication tools this generation has yet seen, Twitter is one of those universal phenomena where the product name self-conjugates. To engage with Twitter is to “tweet.”

Okay, you know what?

privileged member of a privilege demographic railing against the pretensions of other privileged members of other privileged demographics in a self-aware and 'ironic' manner, like you'd fucking care, jesus god what a fuckheadCollapse )

Tue, Apr. 14th, 2009, 01:03 pm
Amazon FAIL: Some Dude Who Claims To Work In IT Speaks.

I’m watching, from the sidelines, the Great Amazon Fail of 2009, and after hearing Dely’s take on the whole situation, I’m willing to suspend my judgment until they fix the issue.

Blah blah blahCollapse )

At any rate, speaking as a low-to-mid-level IT executive dude here, is: Amazon may need to clean house. It’ll need to clean house while people are coming and out and trying to buy stuff and change rankings and add reviews and stuff.

Whoo-boy I wouldn’t want to be Amazon right now.

ETA: Got this and this. Very interesting, and these two issues explain the matter way more eloquently than I did.

Mon, Mar. 9th, 2009, 01:54 pm
Haiyoo, Gary...

I saw this at Grognardia, which is maliszew's blog.

http://paizo.com/planetStories/v5748btpy81ty



*facepalm*

I know why maliszew likes this sort of thing -- it's related to how the early pulps made him feel.

It's just... after all this talk about RF09, you just wanna... *facepalm*

Sun, Jan. 4th, 2009, 10:52 pm

So you know I’ve found myself, thanks to hanishoney, reading this book.

No, I don’t do New Year’s resolutions. I fucking hate them, the way I fucking hate diets (but not plans to improve my life that I can do at any time or the year or exercise plans).

tee ell dee ar, and disorganized tee ell dee ar at thatCollapse )

So. I’m still at this point where I’m evaluating the book, but I have this sinking suspicion that I’ll be using it.

Or at least some of it.

Fri, Oct. 24th, 2008, 11:06 pm
WHAT THE SHIT, RANDOM-GENERATING MACHINE THING

I am so suicidal! I am so going to kick mearls out of the house. They keep on stealing my tampons!

I feel like I'm so irritated! I don't know why leila_nile went all psycho over me and sashi1977 having a little fun.

What sucks is that that jerk tiramisupoet gone and said that I got caught dissing on vivian_shaw. If I get my hands on them there's paybacks!

And also yesterday at school I got in a huge fight with nikotesla.

Hey and know what? mom & dad was totally unfair to me Sunday and now I'm grounded :-(.

This entry automatically generated by the LJ Drama Generator!

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