Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Friday, March 25, 2011

BOOK: Half Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls

so, i was a bit down at the beginning of this week. a good read should do me good. i went to popular bookstore, Boulevard, Kuching, yesterday to collect my membership card and also to window shop for books. (i'm dead broke, buying a book was out of question).

but, i did. i bought Jeannette Walls's Half Broke Horses. for the cover and for the author's note, by calling the book a novel, wheres others will categorize it memoir/biography. the story is about her grandma, Lily. a thin volume, it took only over couple hours to read. then, i re-read.

i'm not overly crazy of her writing style, nor the grandma she potrayed. i have no intention in my life to ever be in her shoes. no matter how adventurous her life sounded.

the story began with Lily, together with her younger siblings, Buster and Helen survived a Texas' plain flash flood when she was 10, then trot on her childhood living in a dugout, breaking horses for wagon horses, ranch chores and occassional flashback on her parents' families history. surviving a tornado and moved to a ranch in Arizona.

then, come the heartbreaking part of where she went to school and had to go back to the ranch because her gimp father bought dogs instead of paying for her tuition. throughout the book, Lily was potrayed as a sensible, practical and very resourceful woman. being so, at 15 she went to northern Arizona, 500 miles ride on a horse she broke herself. she took 4 weeks travelling the distance, alone on her own expenses to be a teacher. she got the position because there's shortage on teachers during the war and because of the remoteness of the place. when she's 18, the WW1 over, so was her temporary teaching position.

so, she went to Chicago. having no diploma or any academic certificate, she only can chose to become a factory worker or maid. she chose the later. it was in this city she met and married a salesman, Ted at 21. after 6 years of marriage, she discovered that Ted, actually has another family. brokenhearted, she annuled the wedding and went back to his father's ranch. finding no purpose in the ranch, as it now belong to her brother, Buster. She enrolled in the university to get her degree, she got her high school diploma in Chicago, attending night classes. on her second year, she got a position to teach at Red Lake, Arizona.

it was here she met her second husband, Jim, 20 years her senior who taught her to drive. when Lily went to Chicago, her pretty sister, Helen went to Los Angeles to try acting. She ended up pregnant and came up to Lily at Red Lake. she later commited suicide. her death sobered up Lily on her purpose in life. she decided to marry Jim and started a family. the family survived the Great Depression, thanks to Lily's resourcefullness. she even managed to learn flying small plane during the depression. the book ended with the birth of Jeannette Walls, the author of this book by Rosemary Smith, Lily's daughter.

Now, i really need to read The Glass Castle, Walls book on her mom, Rosemary.

this passage on page 207 , mugged my heart. (conversation between Lily and her small daughter, Rosemary over the Mormon's belief in temple garment)

"America is a free country," i said. "and that means people are free to believe whatever cockamamie thing they want to believe"

"so, they dont have to believe it if they dont want to?" Rosemary asked.

"no, they dont"

"but, do they know that?"

Malaysia is a free country too. do we know that? really?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

this too, will ebb away

life is full of temporary failures, di ba?

and this too, will pass.

something happened and i felt like a fool. and when stupid things like this happened, it'll only go downhill. and i dont really feel like i wanna be dragged down the hill, yet. especially when, i love the view up here, where it's cosy, breezy and familiar.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Hantu Kak Limah Balik Rumah

finally, Sarawak State Assembly dissolved today. this next few weeks will be interesting in Sarawak. being an outsider, i have the privilege of being nonpolar in their political affinity, and being a localised stranger, people are more open in voicing out their opinion. ya, the kadai kopi talk..what not to say?

that first para is not intended to be written in this post. just, i think its important to notice. i actually want to jot on a hillarious malay film (which, i reluctantly watched--glad i did). Hantu Kak Limah Balik Rumah.

so, what if the leading actor is Awie?. ya, that Awie. and only in this film did i realize, he really can act! like really selamba bodo...the credit should go to the script man: Hassan Mutalib (you, wrote a wonderful, hillarious, very relevant, openly honest script sir, thank you!)

if you want a malay movie; politically inclined, quietly challenging the system, openly menyindir everything and everyone that should be disindir. try this movie. pause to listen to 'sorry seems to be the hardest word', keroncong version. i almost terkencing, for laughing out loud. man! thats better than Elton John's version.

i really, really should watch this film earlier. this is one good comedy film.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Joke is on The Joker

No reading done since Heartsblood. i tried going back to Moby Dick with little success. i ended up watching movies from a friend's DVD collections. so, from sunday to last night, i've watched (in order): Push, Terminator Salvation, The Terminal, X-Men Origins;Wolverine, Merlin and The Book of Beasts, Legion, In The Name of The King, Night at The Museum, G.I. Joe; the rise of cobra, Fast and Furious4, Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire, Sundel Bolong 2, Hantu Kak Limah Balik Rumah.

The only movie i'll recommend to watch from the lots is, The Terminal

Tom Hanks played Viktor Navorski, a visitor to New York from eastern Europe, whose homeland erupts in a fiery coup while he is in the air en route to America. upon arrival, he's denied entrance to the States because, technically, his passport is no longer valid and he cannot be deployed home for security reason. so, he stayed at the airport's terminal international transit lounge until the war at home is over. His genuine helplessness in dealing with the system he's not accustomed to and his limited ability to converse in English well, is hugely funny and entertaining. This movie has it all; the funny part, painful side, romance, friendship, family and how good, will eventually triumph in the end.

While i lmao at Viktor's painfully sticky situations, i asked myself, how easy is it for us to laugh and make fun of other's weakness and helplessness.

Consider the blunder made by BH in publishing this:
i bet, if CNN didn't push it over. they'll never realize how insensitive they were by trying to be funny.

p/s: its considered decent to make fun of our own boisterous politicans, its another to poke fun at other's misfortune. along that line, go watch the terminal. its ok to laugh at Viktor. He's Tom Hanks after all.
added on 21/03/2011
so, our 'first lady' also threw herself in the band wagon of serious blunders. she's a cool parampuan rambut kambang.

Monday, March 14, 2011

the dress looks nice on you and other fooly

i was on the phone with my sister last night, lementing on our pertambahan berat badan mendadak, (huh?! mendadak kepala kau!). the trigger of the 'sudden' realization is our close friend, charles' wedding this weekend. no dress to wear.. (Shut up Sufjan Stevens, your quirky music:(the dress looks nice on you), doesnt really help)

so, as you can imagine, i feel a bit like these today:

puckered up, well dried taik

i hope the image of (above) will remain intact in my mind, everytime i have the urge to use my magic spoon to produce 2 mins choc cake - no kidding. (now, the regret to learn such trick)

it seems, we suffer 'unsustainable development' in our environment. read: the root cause of many environmental disasters is in the production and consumption. go figure!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

friday's breakfast special

i should be eating Pho for breakfast in Saigon today. i decided to stay and do my job instead. i have to catch on my classes and finish the syllabus before their mid term, by the end of this month. its a fine friday morning here in Kuching. a bit cloudy, just the way i like it best. But, wouldnt it be grand if i were sitting in a stall in saigon slurping away my second helping of pho bo?

notes: i blame the system in Bahagian pengurusan Latihan for my failure to comply to my schedule. they always sent letter for meetings a few days before the events, like they never plan anything. just because we're under the ministry of health, doesnt mean everything should be done 'emergency' way.

i read in the Star (Sarawak version) about Mahathir's memoirs. let it stew (say, a year?, or maybe when he's gone?). i'll read it someday, but, i'm not dying to know what he has to say about himself. or any justification for whatever done, whatsoever. I am a Sabahan, and i'm not over yet of what he've done to us.

Thinking of Saigon (and longing to be there) makes me think of that book. Saigon: being re-named Ho Chi Minh City, when it's the last and least to abide to communism. i'm mulling over the idea on correlation of important figures, ego and ego-feeds (just finished reading Heartsblood by Paul Martin- a book so medically entertaining (relatively to the books i skimmed through, writing the proposal) and concerning the ego things). Mahathir's book and HCMC are ego-feeds.

p/s: feeding myself tomato for dinner. the first tomato from my window's balcony garden.

Monday, March 7, 2011

wishes do come true, unexpectedly

be really carefull when you make a wish. they may just come true, unexpectedly, without a warning, at a time you'd say, not really a good time.

last week, i gleefully wrote about me 'going to heaven' in reading frenzy. i thought, i have at least more than a week to read, analyse and write the proposal. i didnt count on the 4 days of examination paper editing (i have to be the urusetia, since our setiausaha peperiksaan, En. Saza had to take emergency leave because his FIL nazak) the job required me to be the serf to prepare for PPoint presentation, editing other's questions, questioning other's questions. my own subjects, i had to prepare the questions at night, leaving no time for me to read.

my precious weekend was cut short by period pain (in i refuse to talk about what a hormon imbalance can do to a woman). merely finish reading and making short note on Godin's survival is not enough, carbon metric measurement and national green policy. and made an outline for my proposal.

i should be reading Design For Environment by Fiskel yesterday. but, instead, i spent the day preparing for my naziran today. they're coming for pengenalan kimia's outlier. i am the pengajar for that subject and the coordinator for the class. i feel pathetic. i need more than a potter's hand to mould 'rejected' clay. really.. have you ever tried teaching chemistry to kids with 8E in SPM science? (and now, i'm bitching) sorry. i cant afford the energy to be negative. tomorrow, is the last day to submit the application.

but, let me survive today first. i'm writing this while waiting for my 'algojo'

i'm listening to the morning benders--- they're awfully zen'ing.

update: i got myself a merciful algojo. they're totally not what i've expected. my head's still intact and still where it suppose to be. and now, i'm humming "God be merciful to me.. on Thy grace i place my plea, planteous in compassion Thou..", you know, the Jars of Clay version.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...