Is Avril Too Sexy?


Written on 8/20/2008 10:25:00 am by sikapitan

Well, it was pretty late, and Jimmy Kimmel sucks, so I switched to 712. That's E! Entertainment Channel for you folks without Astro. So in the Daily 10, a sort of Buletin Utama for entertainment news, Malaysia gets a mention!!!

But imagine the embarrassment when I found out that the news was about Avril Lavigne’s concert here in Kuala Lumpur, scheduled for the 29th this month. Again, we are in the news for all the wrong reasons, and are made to look a bit foolish in the international media.

It all came about when PAS protested against the concert, apparently because Avril’s too sexy (are you freaking serious? They’re Malay girls wearing less clothes walking around Sunway Pyramid!). When the news was featured yesterday, no decision has been made yet, and I was quietly optimistic that this would just blow over.

Imagine my surprise when I visited the Malaysian Insider and came across this news:

No to "too sexy" Avril Lavigne

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 19 — Malaysia today cancelled a concert by Canadian rock singer Avril Lavigne, saying it may taint the Muslim-majority country's Independence day celebrations after the Islamic opposition slammed her show as being "too sexy."

The Arts, Culture and Heritage Ministry said it had decided not to permit Lavigne's show because it was unsuitable to Malaysian culture and could not be held on Aug. 29, two days ahead of Merdeka.

"It is not timely. It's not in the good spirit of our National Day. If we go ahead with the concert, it is contrary to what we are preparing for," said Shukran Ibrahim, a senior official from the culture ministry's department that vets all foreign artistes.

The decision came after the youth wing of a fundamentalist opposition party, the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party (Pas), called for the show's cancellation.

Kamarulzaman Mohamed, a party youth official, said yesterday that Lavigne's show was "considered too sexy for us" and would promote the wrong values just before Merdeka.

"We don't want our people, our teenagers, influenced by their performance. We want clean artistes, artistes that are good role models," he said.

Lavigne, who became famous with her 2002 debut album "Let's Go," had planned to launch her monthlong Asia tour in Kuala Lumpur.

The show's promoter, Galaxy Group, can request a new date for the concert, which will be considered by the ministry, Shukran said. Galaxy officials couldn't be immediately reached for comment.

Galaxy began advertising the Grammy-nominated rock singer's concert this month even though it had yet to obtain a government permit, which is mandatory for all foreign music shows. It said yesterday about half the concert tickets had been sold.

Last year, R&B singer Beyonce moved her show from Malaysia to Indonesia, and Christina Aguilera skipped the country on an Asian tour after a controversy erupted over a dress code for foreign artistes.

Malaysia requires all performers to wear clothes without obscene or drug-related images and be covered from the chest to the knees. They must also refrain from jumping, shouting, hugging and kissing on stage.

Still, members of Pas and other conservative Muslims often protest against Western and even Malaysian music shows that they deem to be inappropriate.

The local organiser of a Pussycat Dolls concert in 2006 was fined RM10,000 after the US girl group was accused of flouting decency regulations. — AP

Go figure!

Under - 15 on Steroids?


Written on 8/15/2008 12:42:00 am by sikapitan

This news caught my eye today:

Phnom Penh - The Football Federation of Cambodia is up in arms over widespread reports of hairy-legged, mustachioed players taking the field in the first nationwide under-15 championships, the federation’s secretary general said Tuesday.

Cambodia has been named one of the most corrupt countries in Asia by the Berlin-based watchdog group Transparency International, but the country’s football federation has said it is determined to buck that reputation and prove itself clean so it can earn funding and international respect.

Frustrated secretary general Ouk Sethycheat said in light of these efforts by the federation, the latest example of bending the rules was beyond the pale.

The cheating involves ’several’ of the 24 teams involved in the championships, he said while accusing them of abandoning all attempts at subtlety.

‘We decide who is under 15 using two criteria - documentation and by looking at them,’ he said. ‘If Cambodian players are under 15, under no circumstances do they have hairy legs and moustaches.’

He said that after questioning the more hirsute players, it was found their documentation was forged.

The fiasco is particularly embarrassing for the federation after it was fined 4,000 dollars by the Asian Football Federation in February for fielding an overaged player in a regional Under-16 Youth Championship qualifying match. Cambodia’s football governing body has pleaded ignorance.

It was not clear what punishments the cheating teams would face.

Cambodia’s national team is currently ranked 169th in the world

This is just too funny. And suddenly, thoughts of over-competitive schools here in KL importing foreign players (because the locals are rubbish?) and passing them off as under-15s left me in stitches.

Of course, it doesn't mean one cheat will win the game. The other team might just do the honorable thing, and pay off their opponents. Mustache or not, money shaves points off better.

Yes, I'm 13.

Here I Go Again...


Written on 8/10/2008 08:24:00 pm by sikapitan

It has been a while, and a lot has happened since. I’m sure most of you are aware of the political situation here in Malaysia, and there’s no need for me to comment further. In fact, I sense an increase in the number of socio-political blogs from Malaysia since GE 12, a sign of maturity or another one of those short-term “hangat taik ayam” situation.

Well, shouldn’t say much about “that” because I have failed to update THIS blog (hint: there’s another blog lurking around, but it’s not something I should share). I don’t know if you guys know this, or if I have mentioned this before, but here’s just a quick recap of my life:

  • Life as a married man has not been as challenging as some made it out to be. I guess it’s about finding the balance in life.
  • Work has been challenging and interesting thus far. Maxis, through MGTP, have provided me with a great platform to learn a lot about the corporate world...and NO, I am not doing anything remotely related to legal work (which is a waste apparently to some people).
  • It’s getting harder to meet friends and do things I used to do. But it just makes hanging out with them even more precious. Sometimes, I do get pissed off when we talk nonsense, but then I realized that’s what makes hanging out so much fun!
  • I’ve been on a real tight budget nowadays – and I love it! I carpool with my wife most of the time, take public transport daily, and no longer have lunch at KLCC, ever since the fuel price hike. Somehow, it has made me a bit more responsible.
  • I still am learning, every day. In fact, I think I may have overloaded my brain with information, until books I read become just another piece of dead tree, which is sad.

So, now that I’ve started writing HERE again (another hint), I guess readers would like to know the direction I’ll be taking. Well, looking back at my past posts (spanning 4 wonderful years, right?), I noticed no discernible common thread, except a genuine desire to be as creative and interesting as possible. I guess that’s what you could expect – the expected and unexpected all rolled into one.

Remember, I am a walking, breathing, living contradiction. Go figure!