Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Too Old to Rock 'N' Roll: Too Young to Die

The old Rocker wore his hair too long,
wore his trouser cuffs too tight.
Unfashionable to the end drank his ale too light.
Death's head belt buckle yesterday's dreams
the transport cafe prophet of doom.
Ringing no change in his double-sewn seams
in his post-war-babe gloom.

Now he's too old to Rock'n'Roll but he's too young to die.

He once owned a Harley Davidson and a Triumph Bonneville.
Counted his friends in burned-out spark plugs
and prays that he always will. But he's the last of the blue blood greaser boys
all of his mates are doing time: married with three kids up by the ring road
sold their souls straight down the line.

And some of them own little sports cars
and meet at the tennis club do's.
For drinks on a Sunday work on Monday.
They've thrown away their blue suede shoes.

Now they're too old to Rock'n'Roll and they're too young to die.

So the old Rocker gets out his bike
to make a ton before he takes his leave.
Up on the A1 by Scotch Corner
just like it used to be.
And as he flies tears in his eyes
his wind-whipped words echo the final take
and he hits the trunk road doing around 120
with no room left to brake.

And he was too old to Rock'n'Roll but he was too young to die.

No, you're never too old to Rock'n'Roll if you're too young to die.

-- Jethro Tull, Too Old To Rock'N'Roll: Too Young To Die (1976)

Just a month ago, we were ushered into the year 2006. Two days ago, it was the Chinese New Year for the Year of the Dog, which I can't quite relate the zodiacal relevence. Yesterday was 1st Muharrram, the new hijrah year 1427.

Today February 1st, it is the 32nd year of Kuala Lumpur as a Federal Territory i.e. the year Sultan of Selangor sign away an expansive track of land to the Federal Government.

All these many "first days" reminds me of my piling age which will fall on auspices days. The upcoming one is the Day of Asyura 10th Muharram 1380. On the gregorian calender, its another auspicous day, 4th July, 1960 American time or the American Independence Day

I am not being philosophical or reflective today.

The title of the blog today relates to a nice and rather spartan eatery at the roundabout, near Sterling Drugs plant, at the end of Jalan Enggang, Keramat called D'Attap. When I have the time, I'd go there on a Friday nite. The band, Blues Treat, starts playing at 9:15 p.m. till around 12:30 a.m..

The place reminded me of the Whole in the Wall, a place I regularly go back in college. Its a bit bohemian place that serve all the organic and no chemical food. College students come to perform and anyone could come to join to jam along.

That pretty much is as close to describe the inconspicous D'Attap. Click on the link The Edge for their review of the place.

D'Attap is a place that revive your spirit after a week of hard work with music of your youth, the rock songs of the 70s and 80s. And, its a place for camarederie of an appreciative crowd with the sole interest of the genre of music.

It beats going to hotel and club lounges with its repetitive top 40s, overzealous wannabees, and business and corporatemen selling their wares or flaunting their ego. At times, their subtle displays is as fine as a battering ram.

The band inspired most of the songs written in this blog. I'd like to dedicate February for the songs from Blues Treat. To Rfizam aka Ali, Tapok, Bob, Arul and others ... No, you're never to old to Rock'n'Roll if you're too young to die.

A Voice
Kuala Lumpur
February 1st, 2006 2:10 p.m.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Open Arms

Lying beside you
Here in the dark
Feeling your heart with mine
Softly you whisper
You're so sincere
How could our love be so blind
We sailed on together
We drifted apart
And here you are
By my side

So now I come to you

With open arms
Nothing to hide
Believe what I say
So here I am
With open arms
Hoping you'll see
What your love means to me
Open arms

Living without you
Living alone
This empty house seems so cold
Wanting to hold you
Wanting you near
How much I wanted you home

But now that you've come back
Turned night into day
I need you to stay

So now I come to you
With open arms
Nothing to hide
Believe what I say
So here I am
With open arms
Hoping you'll see
What your love means to me
Open arms

-- Journey, Eclipse (1981)

So the court set aside the "quarrel", but not "quarrel", of Siti Nurhaliza and Sharifah Aini. I thought it is a ridiculous case and a waste of public fund. But isn't all quarrel and disputes ridiculous.

Alas this has become personal - one shamed by a malicious e-mail and one said to share the malicious e-mail with someone else. Yes there is honour involved - both side. That complicate matters.

I guess that is the nature of disputes.

When it is let to prolong, it'll come to the point you forget what its originally about. You start talking to lawyers. They'll tell ye other legal principles you do not know happen in the first place, before the dispute begins.

Its best to try to put aside what happened and rebuild that relationship again. Dah lah yang lepas tu lepas lah. I am learning that it is right.

I know its hard. I've got my own and many fair shares of disputes. Some out of being slighted for an incidence, injected with non related issues and get prolonged into somewhere else. Some out of others interference into a relationship that was drifting cause of our own predicament.

I was told by a special and wise person not too long ago "the bigger of you is the one that can set the differences aside ...". Some friends sniggered recently and said "alah tak de hal lah tu, biasa aja". And, they are right. It shouldn't have been allowed to worsen.

I hope I can be the bigger one and hope the counterpart is also a bigger one. Anytime we may continue our journey. For love, brotherhood, and friendship ... Open arms.

A Voice
Kuala Lumpur
January 26th, 2006 12:20 p.m.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Hey You!

Hey you, out there in the cold
Getting lonely, getting old
Can you feel me?
Hey you, standing in the aisles
With itchy feet and fading smiles
Can you feel me?
Hey you, don't help them to bury the light
Don't give in without a fight.

Hey you, out there on your own
Sitting naked by the phone
Would you touch me?
Hey you, with you ear against the wall
Waiting for someone to call out
Would you touch me?
Hey you, would you help me to carry the stone?
Open your heart, I'm coming home.

Hey you, standing in the road
Always doing what you're told,
Can you help me?
Hey you, out there beyond the wall,
Breaking bottles in the hall,
Can you help me?
Hey you, don't tell me there's no hope at all
Together we stand, divided we fall.

-- Pink Floyd, The Wall (1979)

I do not know how to describe what I am feeling now! Angry, concern, flabbergasted, frozen, and perhaps helpless. Some applied forces have upset my mental state and environment of harmony and balance.

How could a group of Ministers gang up to send a memorandum to a Prime Minister? That is a an act of threat so blatant that has never been seen. What cheez me off is their demand for the already poorly empowered Syariah court to be subservient to the Civil Court!

I can appreciate the horror of the wife of Allahyarham Moorthy to find out the husband converted to Islam without her knowing. He must have his own reasons. But this issue of the court making decision on behalf of others is part of law and order. It has worked against the Muslim too! If Ministers were to act to disrespect the law, I have a right to be angry.

I believe this is an open attempt and a slice by slice strategy to subjugate and deny the Malay and Islamic inheritance of this country. And, I am not talking out of paranoia or hatred but with full awareness and analysis of the timeline of events and its anticipated direction.

The immediate objective is towards the creation of Interfaith Commission (IFC). The proponents of IFC claim it to be a body to resolve inter-religious issues. I am agreeable to a mechanism to resolve such issues but the drafted proposed legislation does not say so. The intention seemed to lead towards revoking Article 153 and those relating to Islam.

Since last weekend, I was in communication with many who wish to express their willingness to show our Islamic concurrance but was dampened by the attitude of those in the position to initiate and lead.

Last night I met Mr Damp and express our more monumental concerns. We were told of a stark reality in our wishes to put right of wrong. Unity can be cracked by lines of mouth that needs feeding, young brains that needs schooling and dismotivated weary warriors.

I can't blame them and appreciate what they have went through. Only the Liverpool FC have ownership of the tagline "you never walk alone".

But I still believe lone frustation should not be a hinderance and ... together we stand, divided we fall.

A Voice
Kuala Lumpur
Jan 24th, 2006 11:15 a.m.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

For You

There’re no words to say
No words to convey
This feeling inside

I have for you
Deep in my heart
Save from the guards
Of intellect and reason
Leaving me at a loss
For words to express my feelings

Deep in my heart
Look at me losing control
Thinking I had a hold
But with feelings this strong
I’m no longer the master
Of my emotions

- Tracy Chapman, Debut Album (1988)

We just had a great feast of fish and good conversation for luncheon till a phone rang. Your counter has been suspended pending announcement. Look what is the other counter being suspended. We were suspecting a corporate M&A in the offing.

He left a company to join another company and the procedures of transfer is ongoing, strangely for too long a time. This industry emulates the professional football transfer practise. By a bizarre twist of coincidence and faith, his new company could be acquired by his previous company.

I have to dedicate to him this song because the first two verses accurately described his predicament. By thus far, he has not lost control.

I'd say buddy, face difficulty or such bizarre coincidence as scout and ossies. A scout is supposed to smile under all difficulty. And, ossie put a sense of humour into just about everything, even laugh their trouble away. Don't worry you and family will be alright.

We can never understand, even if try to rationalise and justify why certain things happen and certain things don't. I have stopped figuring it out and resolve to just move on. Off course, it is never easy on us and yet at times I do get into instances of regrets and dissappointment. After so often, I try to numb myself.

... I am no longer the master of my emotions.

A Voice
January 18th, 2006, 8:30 a.m.
Kuala Lumpur

Tuesday, January 10, 2006


Who am I to be blue
Look at my family and fortune
Look at my friends and my house

Who am I to feel deadend
Who am I to feel spent
Look at my health and my money

And where
Where do I go to feel good
Why do I still look outside me
When clearly I've seen it won't work

Is it my calling to keep on when I'm unable
And is it my job to be selfless extraordinary
And my generosity has me disabled
By this my sense of duty to offer

And why
Why do I feel so ungrateful
Me who is far beyond survival
Me who see life as an oyster

Is it my calling to keep on when I'm unable
And is it my job to be selfless extraodinary
And my generosity has me disabled
By this my sense of duty to offer

And how
How dare I rest on my laurels
How dare I ignore an outstretched hand
How dare I ignore a third world country

Is it my calling to keep on when I'm unable
And is it my job to be selfless extraodinairy
And my generosity has me disabled
By this my sense of duty to offer

Who am I to be woo

- Alanis Morisette, Feast on Scraps: Inside Under Rug Swept (2002)

Its the festival of Aidil Adha today. To commemurate this auspices Islam's syariat-ed festival, it is the animal sacrificial ritual in remembrance of the act of Prophet Abraham. Its about his willingness to follow God's command to sacrifice his beloved son Ishmael. He was about to perform it on his willing son Ishmael that another revelation came to request replacing with a goat. He has pass that greatest test of faith ever on men.

The message of the Quranic story that is translated into a ritual and honoured as a festival, is the importance of sacrifice. It comes together with the quality of patiance, selflessness and steadfast. It takes a spirit of such prophetic faith to be able to do such act of Abraham. We are not likely to be tested in a manner.

For us, God is less demanding. At its minimal, we are expected to assume some discomfort or restrain oneself from certain trappings for a rightful purpose. The Quran 22:37: "It is not their meat nor their blood, that reaches Allah. It is your piety that reaches Him...".

Its telling us to seek a purpose and role beyond the limited fardhu 'ain confine of family and neighbours. Each must balance their life to take up a role of a higher order for community, nation, ummah and humanity albeit within ones knowledge, capability and capacity.

As time goes by, I sense this is diminishing in today's society. It is selfishness rather sacrifice that rules the day.

People are driven by their self conquest for car, condo, and credit card. There are many of those getting involved but with the ulterior motive for access to power if not power itself. Gone are empowering for the sake of a cause and capability.

We have forgotten that it is the patiance and sacrifice of our forefathers, past leaders and brave souls that made this lovely and peaceful country of ours. Reap the benefit but concurrently assume some discomfort and restrain ourself to sacrifice for others or the later.

As professionals, carryout ones expertise diligently beyond just scope of responsibility but enable objective met and the community benefit.

As administrators, carryout ones authority beyond rules and regulation but with wisdom and compassion so community life be better and interest not compromised.

As people of commerce, carryout ones pursuit beyond personal wealth creation and opulance living, but accumulating capital to contribute to betterment and benevolent pursuit.

As corporate captains, carryout ones objective beyond bottom line and financial positioning but not to foresake the interest of the little people and the deprived, where one came from.

Just as in the ritual Aidil Adha, it is the meat that is redistributed to the poor, needy, and community, not the bone soup. Its tasty but no nutritional value.

The decay seemed inevitable. Lets ponder.

If individual's conscience can't be relied on to carryout their respective role dutifully and let alone beyond ones expectation for a cause and a struggle, it is time for a rethink. It has to be system driven and less individual's discretion. The role and integrity of institutions strengthened and must be instilled that it come before personalities.

But ... Who am I to ... woo

Selamat Aidil Adha

A Voice
Kuala Lumpur
January 11th, 2006, 12:10 a.m.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Highway Star

Nobody gonna take my car
I'm gonna race it to the ground
Nobody gonna beat my car
It's gonna break the speed of sound
Oooh it's a killing machine
It's got everything
Like a driving power big fat tyres
and everything

I love it and I need it
I bleed it yeah it's a wild hurricane
Alright hold tight I'm a highway star

Nobody gonna take my girl
I'm gonna keep her to the end
Nobody gonna have my girl
She stays close on every bend
Oooh she's a killing machine
She's a moving mouth body control
and everything

I love her I need her
I seed her
Yeah She turns me on
Alright hold on tight I'm a highway star

Nobody gonna take my head
I got speed inside my brain
Nobody gonna steal my head
Now that i'm on the road again
Oooh i'm in heaven again i've got everything
Like a moving ground an open road
and everything

I love it and I need it
I seed it eight cylinders all mine
Alright hold on tight I'm a highway star
Nobody gonna take my car
I'm gonna race it to the ground Nobody gonna beat my car
It's gonna break the speed of sound
Oooh it's a killing machine
It's got everything like a driving power big
fat tyres and everything

I love it and I need it
I bleed it
Yeah it's a wild hurricane
Alright hold on tight I'm a highway star
I'm a highway star, I'm a highway star

- Deep Purple, Machine Head (1972)

Yup, thats you alright. In all its glory ... Pontiac Firebird 1972. They must have wrote this song for you, honey.

I bump into you down in Tennesee at the end of summer 81. Rode you back to New York. I gave you a leg job ... air shocks. Redid your paint. Rebuild your engine myself. For $500 bucks, you gave me the most affordable validation a struggling college kid could have. In fact, I even had myself a pair of black leather jacket just to not embarass you.

I thought I was cool struting you around.

King of the highway. Nobody pass me by. You were built with speed. I was the only one who could handle you. You and me were meant to be.

Back then, I'd cruise you baby on a Saturday nite. We'd reach a traffic light. Look to our side. Aha ... thats a fine looking set of wheels. Are you any good? I'd ramp your engine a bit and they ramp back. ... OK. We are talkin' drag. Sure to the next red light.

The lights hit green and its showtime. Tires screeching and rubber burning for that split second lead. The first car that sets in will built up the speed. We reach the next red and slam the brakes. Thumbs to the winner! And its usually us. We acknowledge and we separate.

Cheap thrill on a Saturday nite. Memories of my youth in America ... A highway star.

A Voice
Kuala Lumpur
January 6th, 2006, 8:30 a.m.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

KepadaMu Kekasih

KepadaMu Kekasih
Aku berserah
Kerana ku tahu
Kau lebih mengerti
Apa yang terlukis di cermin wajahku ini
Apa yang tersirat di hati
Bersama amali

KepadaMu Kekasih
Aku bertanya
Apakah Kau akan menerimaku kembali
Atau harus menghitung lagi
Segala jasa dan bakti
Atau harus mencampakku ke sisi
Tanpa harga diri

Hanya pada Mu Kekasih
Aku tinggalkan
Jawapan yang belum ku temukan
Yang bakal aku nantikan
Bila malam menjemputku lena beradu

KepadaMu Kekasih
Aku serahkan
Jiwa dan raga
Jua segalanya
Apakah Kau akan menerima penyerahan ini
Apakah Kau akan menerimaku
Dalam keadaan begini

- M. Nasir, Konsert Akar (1995)

To to get movin’ on 2006, lets start with a positive and an inspiring note. So lets talk about love!
Pada Mu Kekasih” or translated as “To Thee The Beloved” is a love song indeed, love of God. We are familiar with the concept of love between mortals. The Greeks described love as philia for love emotionally driven out of friendship relationship. Eros love as born out of desire. And, agape love talks about selfless love. And, the many other love – lifelong friendship storgic love, manic love, pragma love, flirtatous ludis love, love of things, platonic love, etc..

Love to Robert Sternberg can be described within the dimension of intimacy, passion and commitment. Helen Fischer suggests that love can go through phases of lust, attraction, and attachment changing with the varying level of dimensions.

Pada Mu Kekasih” opens with the gist of penultimate love, divine love by total submission and reliance on Allah (tawakkul’alallah). The acceptance of the Beloved knowledge of his inner thoughts and true intention lead the Lover’s thought journey to seek answer for his fate with total reliance and submission to the Beloved.

As recorded by Omar Ibni Khattab, the Prophet s.a.w. said: "If only you relied on Allah a true reliance, He would provide sustenance for you just as He does the birds: They fly out in the morning empty and return in the afternoon with full stomachs."

The prophet’s words serves a positive reminder that God is the sole Provider. It reminds us to continue without fear for the way of the message in our life's pursuit. Modern life and decadence of society has made one accustomed to the need to be in control of the determining variance. Many have unconsciously forgotten and led astrayed to think that results is within their power and means.

Transcend our relationship with God beyond the unquestionable adherence to obey and abstain. Seek and follow the Straight Path with acceptance and sincerity (ikhlas). Fulfill and carry out God's wishes with joy. And, seek for God's pleasure that is beyond the entrapment of our senses. Put ourself willingly (rida) in the “hands” of the Provider.

Seek for divine love. The state of selfless and conscious love to the wishes of the Beloved. To be in constant contemplation of greatness and wisdom (hikmah). To fathom beyond our physical senses for the beauty in Gods greatness and perfection. To long and yearn to be close to teh Beloved in prayers and meditation. To have no fear of death in continuing the journey to God.

Put our fate in the wisdom and greatness of God. Fear not of evil to be in God's determined path. Not be discouraged by our situation, even … Dalam keadaan begini.
A VoiceKuala Lumpur

January, 2nd, 2006, 6:30 p.m.

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