Monday, December 2, 2013

Falling Short on Shortcuts

I’m always busier on weekends than on weekdays. Mostly, I would be busy with myself, running on treadmill and the sorts. So, don’t expect any updates on weekends.

I’m sorry for not replying the emails asking me who I really am because I don’t see the significance in doing so. I think it would be enough for the readers to know that those are my shoes that you’re looking at up there, and my books, and my table. So, I, exist. Ok? I just like to ‘operate’ from behind the light and watch people in the limelight.

I noticed that Malaysians have this funny craving for limelight; Singers, actors, DJs, Newscasters, Politicians, astronauts, religious scholars, movie directors, animation voice-over actors ... even ordinary Malaysians on the streets are craving for some sort of glam and I don’t know why. Everybody seems to want to be on the big signboard on the roadside or on TV, in the papers and anywhere that they can put they face on.

You watched Majalah 3 about some new discoveries deep in the jungle but all you see were the TV crews making a hero out of themselves. Unlike watching documentaries on Natgeo or Discovery Channel where you don’t even see the crews, simply because they are not the subject.

Funny that some of these jobs are meant to be behind the screen but somehow, they will find a way to show their faces to the world. I don’t really mind the people in the entertainment business going all the way to seek glamour, but astronauts and politicians? Seriously?

Just days ago, a friend told me about a Minister who starred in some kind of short-film or something, and I thought that my friend was only kidding. But then, I saw the still picture from the film being shared on my Facebook. Hmm….

You know, there were times when people looked up on politicians as the wise, the knowledgeable, the no-nonsense kind of people, the truly respectable ones. In the opposite, there were these people in show-business, whom were being looked sideways or down and often judged as the no-brainers, bimbos or the losers.

In those times, politicians didn’t even think of their positions as glamorous. They knew that it comes with much burden and responsibilities. It was no joke being elected or wanting to be elected. Politics was serious business, even more serious than life and death. Entering politics would mean putting the people’s fate in your hand.

Somehow, there seems to be a very thin line in the life of politicians and the show-biz people of today. The world of entertainment and the politics collided and the explosion was obnoxious. Today, we see both actors and politicians fighting hand in hand for a space in the newspapers. The only difference is that whatever stupid statement the actors may say will only effect himself but the stupid statement that the politician said could mean disaster to the country.

Talking about politicians seeking glamour, I have seen how politicians went on a ‘parade’ with their pack of apple polishers buzzing around, expecting people to scream in awe like seeing a primadona walking on a red carpet. I couldn’t imagine what the hell was he thinking at the moment but he sure looked like he was on cloud 9. In fact, this guy has been on cloud 9 and never ever touched the ground again since the day he set foot in Putrajaya.

Unfortunately, he represents the minds of the Malaysians today, at least the majority of us - or more accurately, the Malays. To give you a hint, this Minister has been going around trying to impress the non-Malays by portraying himself as an open-minded person or a ‘centrist’, as he puts it.

But, all I see in him is just another typical Malay with all the necessary ingredients needed to be a Malay - like loves doing things in shortcuts.

Like others, Malays want to be successful too, but the problem is, they spell successful as ‘M.O.N.E.Y’. They craved for money, lots of money, but they don’t want to work for it.

They long for status but they are too lazy to go through the trouble of gaining knowledge. They long for respect but they cannot bear going through hard work. They want to be known, famous, glamorous but they don’t want to go through the trouble of learning the necessary skills.

They want to be at the top without climbing the ladder, they just want to be put there somehow, no matter how. And when they did reach the top where the money is, it’s a ‘life-accomplished’ for them.

Next thing, they will do anything to stay there while spending their lives trying to prove to themselves that they deserve to be there. And so, they go around bragging, just to make sure that everybody is aware of how ‘successful’ they are - all the while wondering whether they look successful enough to be respected.

We can always hear them at the hotel lobby or some high-class café talking about projects and the millions involved, at the top of their voice. In a more relaxed tone, we could hear them talking about getting second wives.

And that is all about it in their ‘successful’ pathetic lives where everything is just for show.

My point here is, the Minister or the astronaut or the Ustaz or the actress or the chicks you find at the clubs, they are all of the same level of mentality. They could be Oxford graduate or Deobond graduate or leavers of some Sekolah Menengah Swasta for repeating their SPM, but they are all the same. They are the Malays longing for acknowledgment, glamour, status and respect through a shortcut. In their own little minds, they believe that they’ve gotten them all just because they have the money. Sad, don’t you think?

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