Sunday, August 24, 2008

Beijing Olympics - A Tribute

Just finished watching the closing ceremony, and felt like putting a few final thoughts about the Beijing games.

The games has been very memorable, mainly because behind the spectacular shows that the organisers put up, the true spirit of the games still remains intact. We saw wonderful achievements, wonderful sportsmanship, and to see the athletes time and again exceed themselves was a joy and inspiration.

So, as a tribute to the those who so inspired us, I dug out some old MV's from Youtube from that perennial favourite of mine - Animalympics.

The first two MV's are a tribute to the sacrifices that each athlete makes and the discipline that they have to endure to get to where they are today:

The third MV is a tribute to all who have gone to Beijing and gave their very best:

And last but not least, beyond the spectacular presentations that Zhang Yi Mou came up with, the Beijing Olympics theme song for me best personifies the spirit of the games:-

Thursday, August 21, 2008


Since young, I was well known to be a kaki bangku, hopeless in all sports, except maybe for chess.

But in Form 1, I took up cross country running, and was instantly hooked. I wasn't very fast, but there was a certain sense of joy and fulfillment whenever I go out for those long runs.

Since then, on and off I will pick up running again. In Belfast, I used to go on bracing runs in the cold winter. The cold made it easier to cover long distances, and 8 to 10 km was quite the norm.

In my first job, I was encouraged to take up walking, and for 2 years I represented the company in the 10 km walk in the annual inter-insurance company athletics meet.

But later as I started a family and moved on to new careers, running took a backseat. The only exercise I got seems to be wandering around shopping centres during the weekend.

A few years ago, thanks to my good friend Simon I got a treadmill for a good price. I found out to my horror that my fitness had dropped tremendously - I could barely do 3 km before being forced to stop. Once a week I also jogged in the park near my home - again 3 km seems to be my barrier.

Then about 6 weeks ago, a church friend called and asked whether I was interested to sign up for a 10k race.

With that, finally came the incentive to really train and break through the barrier. I did 4, then 5, then 7 and finally was able to do 8 just before the race.

And finally came the big day. It was a wonderful feeling finding out that, yes, I can do 10k once more! The time of 1 hour 5 mins wasn't great, but finishing was still a fantastic feeling :)

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Wither Malaysia?

I don't like to blog about politics, but it has weighed heavily on my mind recently.

Amidst all the shows and drama that are on display daily in our newspapers and in cyberspace, there are a few things that I felt are worth pointing out:

The dominant party in the ruling coalition has become too powerful, to the point that not the police, not the judiciary, not the parliament, and probably not even the monarchy is able to do anything about the rampant abuse of power by them.

I suspect it is not really the alternative coalition that the rakyat want, but rather a way to finally check and roll back the insidious influence this party has been having on all our cherished institutions. They see the alternative coalition as one of our final hopes of doing this.

The key players in the party have too much at stake for us to hope that they will find it in their conscience to do the right thing. They will surely have to answer to the Almighty in the hereafter, but at the moment they just don't care.

There is one other hope, and that for the other member parties of the ruling coalition to realize that they do have it in their power to turn this tide around. Minus all the other member parties, the dominant party cannot stand on its own. But most are either too cowardly or too self serving to have the courage to do the right thing.


So, is there no hope for Malaysia then? Will the final remnants of resistance be finally snuffed out and Malaysia continue on its slow but sure path to self-destruction? The events unfolding in the next few weeks will tell, but at this moment the optimist in me has just turned off the lights and left the building.

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