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sore losers May 12, 2010

Posted by youppe in football, general.
2 comments

Man Utd fans, get over it already. Chelsea is the rightful winner of Barclays Premier League, hands down. they are DOMINANT in the stats department; record of 100++ goals scored, second best defense, 4 games with 7 or more goals scored, and… (drum roll please) they did the double against the trio of Man Utd, Arsenal and Liverpool! yeah man, they beat you home and away.

the perennial King of Sore Losers, Sir Alex Ferguson, always blamed the referee for his side’s shortcomings, but never complained when the blind linesman gave them a goal when the ball never crossed the line against Spurs, or when the referee decided it was an endless injury time until MU scored against Man City. and about all those dubious penalties awarded for… touching a United player in the penalty box?

sore losers never win, even when they win.

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no boundaries May 7, 2010

Posted by youppe in general, personal.
3 comments

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ok, that’s it. i am going to start writing again. it’s too boring (?) now, without this. as my life gets more hectic and busier by the day, more and more responsibilities coming my way, time has been a luxury. don’t get me wrong, it’s not that i don’t like it; in fact this is what makes me thick, what makes me feel purposeful when i wake up in the morning. i like being busy, and always on-call. but no, i am not a workaholic. hahaha… well, before i confuse you more and this become a full blown ramblings on my part, lets just move on shall we.

i’m in mumbai right now, if the news hasn’t reach you yet. i’m working on a monorail project here… so far it has been an eye-opener for me. an international consortium comprised of people from all over the world working on a huge billion-dollar project with all its complexity and not to forget some high-level politics… what a wonderful experience! my family and friends always asked me how did i arrive at the decision; to leave KL and work in India, of all places? for me, it’s not even a fair fight, the decision is so obvious that i would feel irresponsible to myself if i didn’t take the offer. the reasons to take the plunge (!) are (1) moneeeeeyyyyy (triple what i’m getting at KL, plus it’s tax-free, with accomodation – decent apartment in good neighbourhood – and transport – pool Innova with driver – are fully supported by the company, plus other here-and-there perks) and (2) the experience (strapped in the middle of a multibillion dollar international project) which of course will translate into more money in the future! against those 2 reasons, i wanted to stay in KL because it’s easy, it’s familiar, everyone’s here, friends and families. it’s not a fair fight, my friends… it’s not.

oh, it’s almost time to go home. i am pledging to write anything, at least something, everyday, or once every 2 days, every 3 days…. arrgghhh!!! ok, i’ll find time.

damn, i miss writing.

maiden trial run of the monorail in mumbai

a long post to blow off some steam January 13, 2009

Posted by youppe in general, personal.
8 comments
31st December 2008
i met an interesting character during the weekend, who claimed that he is an ‘anarchist’, with the big well-known anarchism ‘A’ stitched on his backpack. i was surprised by the bold claim, but nevertheless excited at the same time. in this age of full-blooded capitalism, where can you find a thoroughbred communist, socialist and even more so an anarchist??? especially in the current bleak economic condition, already dubbed “the twilight of capitalism” whose casualty list reads like the who’s who of capitalist icons, any curious bugger like me would be dying to interview a through-and-through socialist/communist and asked them how they felt, and hear the i-told-you-so’s and the gloating to follow. even Alan Greenspan – the former Federal Reserve chairman of 20 years, who presided over sustained economic boom at the height of capitalism – has been openly bashed & criticized; no one dares to say anything bad about Greenspan in those glory years, you’ll immediately get burned at the stakes! indeed, Marx and Lenin must be smiling in their graves while the likes of Friedman and Keynes must be turning in theirs.
however, i was to be disappointed, my excitement would be found to be shortlived. though still young, with his specs and tie and well-buttoned shirt he looks intelligent and knows his stuff. but he never even heard of Mikhail Bakunin or Peter Kropotkin. he didn’t even know that anarchism is a branch of the socialist/communist idealogies, nor did he understand the difference between them. hell, he couldn’t even tell me convincingly, what anarchism is all about. he champions anarchism just to look cool, he screams the anthemic anti-capitalist slogan ‘All Capitalist Are Bastards’ (made popular by usually left-leaning punk bands), with only the vaguest idea of what it’s all about. and never even heard of Bakunin?… anarchist my ass!!
ahhh… the youth. the brash insolence of it, the ignorance and the carelessness. as if the world is there for the taking, nothing can take you down. those were the glory days, but for some part, i’m glad it was over for me.
here’s for growing up. for getting older, stronger and wiser.
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HAPPY NEW YEAR. cheers!
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ps… don’t mind me, i feel old every New Year’s Eve. maybe because my birthday is also in January. ;p
pss… if you really have no idea, why don’t you just stick with the Quran and Sunnah? why bother with all these other philosophies that’s gonna give you just headaches?
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11th January 2009
have you ever felt like….
you haven’t met this person for a very long time, and you know you missed her. deep down you know you missed her. and then finally, one day, you saw her for the first time after so many years….. and only then you realized, actually just how much you’ve been missing her. like something swept through you, and made you realize just how heavy is the burden in your heart, that has been missing her in all this time.
it also made you realized, for a fact, that you can’t live without her.
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have you ever felt like that?
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13th January 2009
i have a new hobby.
i have always enjoyed reading. (no, it is not the new hobby). i always refer to it as my ‘secret’ passion, because not many people knew this about me. i used to read a whole lot of novels & fictions during my school years and then later in university, the whole nine yards from Puzo to Grisham to Star Wars and Lord of the Rings and even Picoult and Cabot. the non-fictions? ahh, they must be dry and boring, bereft of those nifty storylines and beautifully-constructed sentences of beautiful words that i liked so much.
nowadays, however, it was the non-fictions that gave me the thrills and a whole new dimension to the term ‘engaged reading’. (if you think Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code is engaging and a page-turner, try reading Michael Gordon’s Cobra II, an intimate insider account of the Iraq Invasion from pre-planning stage to the day-to-day operation). yes, i have indeed, switch sides. i’m not quite sure why, some people say it’s because i got older. haha, maybe that’s true. but don’t get me wrong, i have nothing against novels & fictions; any read is a good read, even more so when you consider the fact that most people (especially Malaysians) are too lazy to read anything, even the newspaper. and no, i don’t read all the time; nowadays where got time maaaaa????
anyway, my new hobby is … writing book reviews! ahaha. i was sifting through Facebook’s gazillion mess of widgets & applications and found Visual Bookshelf through one of the requests, and it has been fun since, it’s addictive! ahaha. well, here i pasted several reviews that i’ve done through Visual Bookshelf, of some books that i thought were ‘best-in-class’ written by award-winning authors, in the hope to spread the knowledge and perhaps encouraged more reading especially to the younger generations. (wow, speaking like a 65-years-old).
enjoy!
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The Return of Depression Economics & The Crisis of 2008 by Paul Krugman
krugman “2 things amazed me about this book…. first, though Krugman is a Nobel Laureate in Economics, this book is fairly understandable – like brantley said, it is not an economics book full of numbers, charts & graphs… which is always the case even with Krugman’s previous bestsellers. secondly, there’s a chapter dedicated solely to question/criticize/bash Alan Greenspan, the revered former Fed Reserve chairman, which i think is unprecedented, at least in the mainstream masses. the elevation of Greenspan as the Godfather/the Chosen One/the Messiah of capitalism, up to the point that we fully surrender upon him to take care of our economic well-being, is exactly the kind of thing that we do not need right now, to halt the crisis of confidence that is currently bleeding the market, Krugman argued. with capitalism under attack on a world-scale and its favourite sons bashed and now even doubts themselves, is this really the twilight of the capitalist Gods? highly recommended.”
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Malaysia’s Political Economy: Politics, Patronage, Profits by Edmund Terence Gomez & Jomo K.S.
51kq1w6cyel_sx160_“no one writes about Malaysia’s (or Mahathir-Daim-Anwar’s) “crony capitalism” during the 90s as well as Edmund Terence Gomez, and i think this is his best book on the subject, together with prominent economist Jomo KS. from Daim’s “Peremba Boys” to Anwar’s “MRCB Boys” to Renong’s Halim Saad, Berjaya’s Vincent Tan, MAS’ Tajudin Ramli, the YTL’s partriarchs, Ananda Krishnan as well as a host of other tycoons; from the privatization frenzy that changed corporate Malaysia & put important cash-cows into private hands to the the heady days of Danaharta-led Government ‘Bailouts’ during the 97/98 Economic Crisis, this is a must-read economic history of the country. highly recommended.”
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The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money, Power by Daniel Yergin
prize1“Oil politics 101, from the days John D Rockefeller founded Standard Oil (precursor to ExxonMobil) and became the first American billionaire, to the rise of worldwide oil ‘nationalization’ characterized by the 70s Arab oil embargo & the Iranian Revolution, that gave birth to powerful state-owned oil corporations challenging Western hegemony, until the complications of the Gulf War, on why the West could not afford to let Kuwait fall to Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. now a major referential in studies relating to the history of the oil industry, it has even made into 4-part documentary by PBS (which is good, but not quite as engaging as the book).one need not wonder what the fuss is all about the ‘War on Terror’ in Iraq after reading this book.”
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ps… for the list of non-fictions that i’ve read & recommend visit me at my Visual Bookshelf profile @ Facebook. i own most of them, so drop me a message if you want to borrow.
pss… other highly-recommended; Supercapitalism by Robert Reich, The Looming Tower by Lawrence Wright, The Last Oil Shock by David Strahan, Superclass by David Rothkopf, House of Bush, House of Saud by Craig Unger.
psss… currently reading The Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein and All The Money In The World by Peter Bernstein & Annalyn Swan.
pssss… yeah, i could finish up to RM400 a round at MPH, Borders or Times.
psssss… wow, i sounded like a geek. well, who am i kidding….. i am one!!! muahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

nice guys finish last..? November 28, 2008

Posted by youppe in general, personal, quotes.
20 comments

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This is a tribute to the nice guys. The nice guys that finish last, that never become more than friends, that endure hours of whining and bitching about what assholes guys are, while disproving the very point.

This is dedicated to those guys who always provide a shoulder to lean on but restrain themselves to tentative hugs, those guys who hold open doors and give reassuring pats on the back and sit patiently outside the changing room at department stores.

This is in honor of the guys that obligingly reiterate how cute/beautiful/smart/funny/sexy their female friends are at the appropriate moment, because they know most girls need that litany of support.

This is in honor of the guys with open minds, with laid-back attitudes, with honest concern. This is in honor of the guys who respect a girl’s every facet, from her privacy to her theology to her clothing style.

This is for the guys who escort their drunk female friends back from parties and never take advantage once they’re at her door. For the guys who know a girl is fishing for compliments but give them out anyway. For the guys who always play by the rules in a game where the rules favor cheaters.

For the guys who are accredited as boyfriend material but somehow don’t end up being boyfriends. For all the nice guys who are overlooked, underestimated, and unappreciated. For all the nice guys who are manipulated, misled, and unjustly abandoned, this is for you.

This is for that time she interrupted the best killing spree you’d ever orchestrated in GTA3 to rant about a rumor that romantically linked her and the guy she thinks is the most repulsive person in the world. And even though you thought it was immature and you had nothing against the guy, you paused the game for two hours and helped her concoct a counter-rumor to spread around the floor.

This is also for that time she didn’t have a date, so after numerous vows that there was nothing “serious” between the two of you, she dragged you to a party where you knew nobody, the beer was awful, and she flirted shamelessly with you, justifying each fit of reckless teasing by announcing to everyone: “oh, but we’re just friends!” And even though you were invited purely as a symbolic warm body for her ego, you went anyways. Because you’re nice like that.

The nice guys don’t often get credit where credit is due. And perhaps more disturbing, the nice guys don’t seem to get laid as often as they should. And I wish I could logically explain this trend, but I can’t. From what I have observed on campus and what I have learned from talking to friends at other schools and in the workplace, the only conclusion I can form is that many girls are just illogical, manipulative bitches.

Many of them claim they just want to date a nice guy, but when presented with such a specimen, they say irrational, confusing things such as “oh, he’s too nice to date” or “he would be a good boyfriend but he’s not for me” or “he already puts up with so much from me, I couldn’t possibly ask him out!” or the most frustrating of all: “no, it would ruin our friendship.” Yet, they continue to lament the lack of datable men in the world, and they expect their too-nice-to-date male friends to sympathize and apologize for the men that are jerks.

Sorry, guys, girls like that are beyond my ability to fathom. I can’t figure out why the connection breaks down between what they say (I want a nice guy!) and what they do (I’m going to sleep with this complete ass now!). But one thing I can do, is say that the nice-guy-finishes-last phenomenon doesn’t last forever.

There are definitely many girls who grow out of that train of thought and realize they should be dating the nice guys, not taking them for granted. The tricky part is finding those girls, and even trickier, finding the ones that are single.

So, until those girls are found, I propose a toast to all the nice guys. You know who you are, and I know you’re sick of hearing yourself described as ubiquitously nice. But the truth of the matter is, the world needs your patience in the department store, your holding open of doors, your party escorting services, your propensity to be a sucker for a pretty smile.

For all the crazy, inane, absurd things you tolerate, for all the situations where you are the faceless, nameless hero, my accolades, my acknowledgement, and my gratitude go out to you. You do have credibility in this society, and your well deserved vindication is coming.

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* i thought i’d share this with anyone who have not yet read it.

* originally published for Wharton Undergraduate Journal, and reposted by Noktah Hitam. too excellent for me to ignore. haha 😛

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jenaka melangkaui zaman May 26, 2008

Posted by youppe in general, politics.
3 comments

this is so hilarious, i can’t stop laughing. sebuah jenaka melangkaui zaman.

most of us grew up watching P. Ramlee movies, and his songs are still a bunch of the best written Malay songs ever (moreover if you compare it with the quality of the Malay songs nowadays – ooops!). and the genius that he is, only now we realize this cynical stunt in one of his most famous movies, Pendekar Bujang Lapok. we’ve watched this scene over and over again and never get tired of it, but somehow we missed that little pronunciations that would certainly make it even more hilarious.

don’t know what i’m talking about? this has been making rounds in the cyberspace for the past couple of days, and shouldn’t be missed by those of you especially P Ramlee fans!!

check out the YouTube video here. and the original posting by Op-Ed here.

indeed, ‘jenaka melangkaui zaman’.

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alif mim nun wau.. alif tendang wau……. sarkis?????

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pss.. that haunted song Dimana Kan Ku Cari Ganti still gets me every time…

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at odds with everything May 3, 2008

Posted by youppe in general.
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i’m in the mood of sharing something today.

i was flipping through the TIME 100, the latest list by the renown magazine of 100 most influential people in the world. the usual suspects are all there – the Rupert Murdochs, Jeffrey Immelts, Ratan Tatas and Saudi princes of this world. among all the who’s who in their respective fields, a peculiar name stands out for me, eventhough i haven’t heard of him until today. the name’s Oscar Pistorius, cited here by the one man who could possibly understand the things he had gone through.

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When I was learning how to climb mountains as a blind person, I had a lot of encouragement from experts. But after I summited Mount Everest, these people weren’t ready to accept what I had done at face value. Some said I must have cheated; one even claimed I had an unfair advantage: “I’d climb Mount Everest too if I couldn’t see how far I had to fall.”

Similarly, when Oscar Pistorius’ lower legs were amputated at age 1, few would have banked on this South African challenging world-class sprinters. At 20, when he began to close in on an Olympic-qualifying time for the 400 m, experts posited that his times were so good, he must have been getting an un-fair advantage from his bladelike prosthetics. When he set his sights on the Olympic Games in Beijing, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) ruled he couldn’t compete against able-bodied athletes. An IAAF-initiated study found that more energy is returned to Pistorius’ upper legs from his blades than from ankles and calf muscles and that he uses less oxygen.

Pistorius, 21, is appealing, on the basis of studies with differing results. It was only recently that living with prosthetic legs was seen as a huge impediment, but he has turned this perception upside down. He’s on the cusp of a paradigm shift in which disability becomes ability, disadvantage becomes advantage. Yet we mustn’t lose sight of what makes an athlete great. It’s too easy to credit Pistorius’ success to technology. Through birth or circumstance, some are given certain gifts, but it’s what one does with those gifts, the hours devoted to training, the desire to be the best, that is at the true heart of a champion.

Weihenmayer is the only blind person to conquer Mount Everest

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defying the odds in spectacular fashion, Oscar Pistorius is the definitive testament to the power of human will and determination. indeed, it’s really up to us to decide whether that something which were thrust upon us is a burden or privilege, curse or gift.

heart, mind and soul… as they say.

but sometimes though, even everything is never enough.

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*owh, we’re honoured as a Malaysian made it into the prestigious TIME 100, and he is Anwar Ibrahim.

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in 4 years’ time March 9, 2008

Posted by youppe in general.
6 comments

anwar mobbed

euphoria.

i am still reeling from last night’s adrenalin rush. the scene was at Bangsar Sports Complex, deep in the middle of upper class Bangsar. Anwar Ibrahim’s presence ensured that the Lembah Pantai polling centre was packed to the rafters. imagine the earth-shaking roar and the ensuing frenzy, when it was announced that first-time contestant Nurul Izzah Anwar has defeated incumbent Shahrizat Jalil, a veteran Cabinet Minister. it was almost unbelievable. everyone was high, and shouting at the top of their lungs. Bangsar has never been associated with ‘quiet’, but last night it was at its loudest. Nurul Izzah was in tears, but only for a short while. celebration was picking up. and as it will eventually turn out, it was a hell of a night for Malaysia.

despite even having corporate bigwigs such as CIMB’s Nazir Razak and AirAsia’s Tony Fernandes (of course, both are cronies with interest) campaigning for her, Shahrizat’s defeat in Lembah Pantai was just one of the many high-profile losses suffered by BN. Based on last night’s results, it was apparent that BN was voted out by middle & upper class Malaysians in urban areas. it was obvious that only ‘orang kampung’ who read Utusan & Berita Harian, and watched RTM & TV3, especially in Sabah and Sarawak, who were still rather ‘blind’ to the insurgence of awareness of their peers in the urban areas. and i don’t blame them, as they have limited avenues and decades-long skepticism to boot. hopefully they could be reached better in the next election, for their own good.

but apart from that, i think the message from rakyat was HUGE. Kuala Lumpur is the capital of Malaysia, and Selangor is the most industrialized state in the country. these areas are home to middle & upper class Malaysians, most of them are successful professionals and a highly-educated bunch. these modern, knowledgeable and well-informed urbanites hated it when their intelligence is insulted. you can fool those ‘orang kampung’ with your threats and lame rhetorics, but not us. we are even more qualified than some of your ‘kaki bodek’ MPs who only have SPM (and some don’t even finish school!), so who are you kidding? and the urban voters have spoken, louder than ever, and as important as ever. KL, the urban capital, was almost a sweep, and some places were won by staggering majority (Teresa Kok won in Seputeh by 36,000++ votes!!), not to mention the high-impact wins in Lembah Pantai and Titiwangsa (Dr Lo’ Lo’). only Zulhasnan Rafique (Setiawangsa) survived for BN in KL’s 11 parliamentary seats. in Selangor, BN only won in the more rural areas such as Sabak, Tanjong Karang and Sungai Besar, but closer to KL, even Shah Alam has been won by PAS. BN were almost cleansed out of highly urbanized areas on the outskirts of KL such as Petaling Jaya, Ampang, Subang, Damansara, Gombak, Pandan, Kinrara, Kelana Jaya, Puchong and Bangi. even the youngest contestant, 26-year-old first-time candidate Nik Nazmi (or Budu), who is a year my senior at MCKK, won at Seri Setia. after KL and Selangor, one would imagine the next highly-developed state in Malaysia is Penang, and you already know what happened there. even in the states won by BN, the more urbanized state-capital seats such as Seremban (Negeri Sembilan), Kuantan (Pahang), Kota Melaka (Melaka) and even Kota Kinabalu (Sabah) and Kuching (Sarawak), were won by the Opposition. what does this tell you?

the BN-controlled media were shrewd not to highlight this. but the fact is… the more highly-educated, more intelligent, more informed, middle class, upper middle class and upper class Malaysian citizens living in urban areas with access to the best facilities and infrastructures, are voting BN out of the government in one voice. and that, is a HUGE, HUGE statement, in any way you want to look at it. when the better minds, the better-informed group of people in the country is voting you out unanimously, you have to take notice. BN is now hanging largely on the support of those ‘orang kampung’ who relied heavily on the ‘polluted’ mainstream media. the urbanites have spoken, bigtime, and showed their credentials in style. they can’t be fooled, they see credibility as it is. even with the blanket on all mainstream media, the urbanites can’t be swayed. for that, i am proud. i am damn proud of us. i am so damn proud of us for stamping this statement so boldly. BN should realize that we are not as stupid as they thought. and the rakyat in rural areas, hopefully they can see this statement as something to think about. when their peers in the cities were all united in voting BN out, maybe there’s actually something that they missed out on. maybe all those propaganda in the mainstream media were just that, a propaganda. because in all fairness, their peers in the cities might be in a better position to know something that didn’t reach them.

this time, it will be different from 1998. in 1998, the Opposition’s big win was the climax, and the momentum slowed down after that, resulting in the lopsided GE 2004. this time, Anwar will be in Parliament, which probably has sent shivers down in the BN camp. in Malaysia, only a handful of people could even stand comparison with Anwar Ibrahim, let alone even thinking of trying to debate him in Parliament. the platform is now here, and a lot of work needs to be done. first of all, the Opposition must unite. and then, they must ensure that they deliver in the areas that they won, to build on reputation and credibility. this huge win should not be the climax, the momentum must be maintained. and with Anwar back in the fray, this is optimistically possible. and if this momentum could be maintained, enhanced and built-on, 4 years from now, General Election 2012 will be an even closer fight. if Barisan Rakyat can unite, maintain, enhance and build on its reputation and credibility, and gain more trust in the coming 4 years, the corrupt and ‘unsaveable’ BN could finally be voted out, for good.

it was plain to see, that after Tun Dr Mahathir, there was no one more qualified than Anwar Ibrahim to lead this country. he was destined to lead us into the new century, to take us to the next level. Mahathir has denied us from that, in his own selfishness. but if everything goes as planned, God-willing, we just might arrive at that, in 4 years’ time.

so see you then, in the midst of it all, again.

I AM PROUD TO BE MALAYSIAN.

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* today is the last day Malaysiakini will be open for free to non-subscribers. alternatively, check out Raja Petra’s Malaysia Today.

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WELCOME February 12, 2008

Posted by youppe in general, personal.
5 comments

welcome. as fond as i am with my own writings (ehehe) i am not quite sure why i even bother to start a new blog, here at wordpress. though i could be an addictive writer, these days i really couldn’t find the time to indulge myself in blogging, which has become some kind of a guilty pleasure to me. which kinda resulted in the once-in-a-full-moon updates on my previous blog at Friendster.

yeah, maybe because it’s Friendster. real bloggers don’t use Friendster, right? cheesy, ain’t it? ahaha, you must be kidding yourself if you answered right just now. the words are the ones that matter, not the medium. but Friendster is quite cumbersome, i admit to that. i had requests to move to other sites, and i think the timing is right. why?

because my previous blog, aptly named ‘Starcrossed’, is a tome of something. i may not realize it initially, but it is actually just that. it is a compilation (from my point of view) of the chronicle of events unfolding from the day ‘it’ started to the day it ended until today. and unfortunately (for me), it still hasn’t ended. it is an ongoing real-life drama, which i think will have more twists and turns in the future.

‘Starcrossed’ aside, i hope by separating the blogs i could find the time and interest to be more involved, because honestly, i like writing. besides MUSIC, it is my other way of losing myself when i just have to be anywhere but here. (yeah, i’ve been sober and clean for a long time now)

WELCOME.

ps.. check out the links i put in here. they’re certainly worth your time.