Tuesday, July 24, 2007

During my days in Koleq, I have always felt that I am capable of changing the world and everything under the sun is actually under my power to exploit. I have changed my ambitions quite a number of times, thanks to the vast range of reading materials I had gone through which somehow altered my world view and even my soul quite greatly at times. It is still fresh in my mind that I wanted to be an architect, before thinking to be a man who wears a white-coat at a gloomy alley in a hospital – a doctor. For some time in my younger days, when Manchester United was in their glory days, having scooped every little championships on their way were splashes on papers and televisions, when Malaysian football was quite a phenomena around here (the reason why I said it so is because Selangor were the real Red Giants I knew compared to these days), I wanted to be a footballer, to play for Selangor of course, and eventually will get an offer to play for Manchester United as the first Asian ever played for the Red Devils. I even hallucinated a newspaper headlines – ‘Izham : From a Giant to a Devil’.

Then as I go along, when Selangor started to play sloppy game which then eventually started to lose their crazed antics, and when David Beckham tried very hard to impress other clubs than his own, I started to loose out the daydream to be a professional footballer.

Just like any other little kids around, I was the biggest fans of comics. I didn’t fancy reading superheroes stories like in Marvel Comics’, or fantasy like Doraemon type of comic, but I yearn more on satirical and simple slapstick – and you can find them only in Ujang and Gila-Gila, Malaysia’s very own MAD. I grew up reading them and I guess that’s how humorous trait happened to seep through my vein and I couldn’t stop myself looking things at its humorous part all the time. Then I started to play with pencils and papers that my first artwork was an ‘orang lidi’ – and most probably you guys could expect that for once, I dreamt to be a cartoonist.

Then it came to the time when I can even think of being a boy band, inspired by 2-By-2 hit wonder, which their songs happened to be my lip-synching routine. Even my friends like the band, and we planned to produce an album ever since – which then have to be cut short after one of us moved to a new place, and we are short of one vocal. Then the dream faded off.

I love to watch dramas and live performances. I still remember when there was a slot called ‘Spektra’, which was then a phenomenon in Malaysian drama field with the famous series of Jaguh Jaguh, a story about an inspiring young group of boys who were en route in achieving their craziest dream, to be badminton stars. I was so occupied with the series that I forced my mum to buy me a racquet for me to play with. So most probably you guys might think that I wanted to be a shuttler – you are wrong. I wanted to be an actor! There were times when my mum bought a camcorder (which is very huge in size back then) and it was so happened that my brother spotted my inclinations in front of the camera. He recorded some of my slapsticks and hyperactivities. I could even write playscripts and my first script I made was Hang Tuah story, a story revolved around the fight between Hang Tuah and Hang Jebat where I got to play as both Hang Tuah and Hang Jebat, and so technically, I was fighting alone, with an imaginary opponent. But it was a very fascinating experience when I watched the clips back. My brother would laugh hysterically off my insanity during my younger days. I was an inch close to appear in a movie, but then have to be cut short as my mum would argue that, study comes first!

Lines of ambitions I kept during the time when I was finding my own self had been a good tutor which broadens my scope of view greatly. Dreaming made me a person I am right now, for I am dreaming about I want to be and I tried very hard to be what I want to be. Dreaming allowed me to step to a place I never dream of being in and everything is in my grasp to take hold of – whether I want to do something about it or not. It is nothing wrong about having lots of ambitions and dreams, as long as you are to put your best effort in making the dream comes true. Dream on guys, there is nothing wrong about it. You’ll grow richer with options and experiences, if not money.

At least there is something positive about Mat Jenin.

P.S. I'm dreaming of traveling around the world and write my blog post in different part of the world.

posted by Izham Ismail at 9:38 pm | Permalink | 12 comments
Monday, July 16, 2007
Size won't cause seizure

I thought Argentina was going to seal it. But early goal from Julio Baptista and blunder by world-class defender in Roberto Ayala were quick in approving that a team comprises of star-studded players doesn’t guarantee a win – especially when the opponents have set up the tempo, and of course, when they are Brazilians. My money was on Argentina, and I was banking on Riquelme, Veron, Messi, Mascherano and Tevez to deliver. I have no idea that the Brazilian lineup formed by Dunga could create such ambiance and rhythm in the game, which left the Argies dumbfounded and mesmerized, at least I did.

Everyone would suggest that the double trouble in Roman Riquelme and Seba Veron would capitalize on their pin-point passes and maturity in designing the pace of the game. But then came the real double trouble in Josue and Elano, two wonderkids which only came to my knowing after their appearance in this tournament. They lack of physical prowess; they are short – compared to Riquelme and Veron. But they have what typical Brazilian midfielders have – speed and outstanding ball control. Albeit their hobbit-like build, they excellently being in a class of their own, creating lots of exquisite moment of art of football. Size doesn’t matter.

Ah yes, I am talking to Khairunnisam and his team-mates – if they have ever thought that the reason behind their disastrous Asian Cup howler was in their physique. Josue and Elano would say fuck off.

P.S. Tengku Abdullah resigned as FAM No.2 yesterday. Only after 23 years. Wonder when the No.1 would do the same thing.

posted by Izham Ismail at 9:27 pm | Permalink | 3 comments
Sunday, July 15, 2007
5 puluh tahun merdeka, 5 gol dok kena

It is good to host what said to be the premier football congregation in the continent. Let alone the pride of having our country name splashed everywhere across Asia for being able to compete against the giants for the title.

But save for being humiliated in front of our own crowd is beyond obvious a too familiar fashion of the national team – which most probably have the nicest kit around, and expensive boots too. Five goals conceded in each both two matches clearly prove that Malaysian red, blue and yellow flag shouldn’t be flying its mast anywhere near the Asia’s biggest sporting event.

Rejected...since day one
My name is...bastard son
I've been damned...so many times I've lost count!
- Billy Talent

It is rather an embarrassing fact that we are competing in the cup as the lowest ranked of the 16 teams – but it is not an excuse for us to play a lowest ranked performance. And the fact that Malaysia is a country of 25 million people living in affluence, with eight percent living below the poverty line - And only a bronze medal in a sub-par regional soccer tournament to show for it is way beyond deserving a middle finger.

Against China, Hairuddin Omar was busy tying up his nice boots while Khairunnisam was busy chewing up his chewing-gum – and it was Indra Putra and Akmal Rizal who came and give a nice pat at the back of their heads. But it wasn’t enough for the national team as we were thrashed 5-1 by a team we easily bang once. – It’s been a while since I shouted ‘Goal!’ as the national team scored. Anyway Thanks Indra, for giving me such experience.

And Uzbekistan was next on the list. Maybe Norizan Bakar had a dodgy affair with Hairuddin that he insisted that Hairuddin should be somewhere in the field each and every game – leaving out the player who had been spending years playing in Europe, Akmal Rizal sidelined. And only 20 minutes away from the final whistle that Norizan realized that Hairuddin just couldn’t make his cut anymore in the national team – albeit his towering header goal against Chelsea few years ago – that he was substituted with Akmal, who looked disheartened as he stepped the pitch. Final whistle, we were thrashed again, with a bigger margin of 5-0.

Against Iran? It would be no surprise if Ali Karimi and his colleagues score by only using their Iranian dicks to humiliate Malaysia – with greater margin. 7-0 maybe.

Bemoaning Malaysia’s lack of success on a football field is turning into an annual ritual. And admittedly, it’s getting rather stale, with no end in prospect to our team’s sorry state.

Well you have all the time you need to do something, FAM – for we don’t actually have anything to rush for. If we were in a primary school, we would be in the ‘kelas pemulihan’, where we would be thought how to read, write and count, the basics. The is no need to give hope of we are going to get 5A in the UPSR, but instead just give them proper module so that by they reach standard 6, they can read the UPSR question if not answer it. The problem is now we cannot even read – let alone answer it, but we act like we are the big boys who scored straight As in SPM (if that what it takes to be a big boy). Wake up!

“Malaysia is a nice country, nice food, friendly people – but they play lousy football” -quoted from Mike, a Canadian friend of mine

Thanks for being honest, dude.

P.S. I don’t write anything in particular about the other three hosts, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia as I got so damn envy of their fantastic performance. Enough said.

posted by Izham Ismail at 9:20 pm | Permalink | 1 comments
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
Selera Carey

8.01 pm

It is just minutes away from my dinner time and I am currently waiting for my friends to prepare themselves. I am belatedly left behind every now and then and today, it is my turn to wait for them. Well I wonder what is on the menu today – not so much to be awaited I guess, since food in KMB is not that desirable. I just have to gobble whatever they serve though – since my pocket money wouldn’t allow me to enjoy the luxury café rations. Every single day, during this time of the day, the dinner time, Koleq days has always haunted me without failing. I miss Koleq humble Carey Hall damn much and I miss the vibrant atmosphere created when we enjoy our delicious food. With juniors around, it was the time of the day when we can have a chat and update about ourselves. And the best part is when the prefect on duty giving his announcement of the day, which is highly awaited and anticipated by the audience, whom fervently looking for any he-she sound and any new vocab the prefect about to make. If there is any, the hall will go frenzied with laughter. And of course, words of advice from the wardens could also be the highlight of the day – with the audience submissively listening, and at the same time looking for those two ‘flammable’ things. And if not the emcees or anyone with mic, then colleagues at the same table could also contribute something to be embodied in my memory. It is still fresh in my mind of Apoz, who has been a fantastic in delegating task to the juniors – to buy soy sauce, ketchups and pepper (humble ingredient that could turn a humble nasi putih to a piece of superb culinary art), and Zaim, head of the table, who has been a great companion with his mind-pondering notions – well, it had been a pleasure to have a conversation with once best orator in the country in him. And the moment prefect on duty stood to recite the closing prayer, then the moment of breathtaking eating experience would come to an end – and there was always tomorrow for to look forward to, as I slowly making my exit through the hall’s door and proceed my way for night prep, hoping that the table would still be there tomorrow.

And now, they are just another chapter in my memories.

Since this is my third semester in KMB, I tried very hard to cherish every single thing to make this place not as dreadful as anyone would suggest – and maybe I should try to cherish every single moment at KMB by starting to appreciate the Dewan Selera. Maybe I will be missing this place even more, who knows?

P.S. Ah shit, they are all waiting for me. I am late, again.

posted by Izham Ismail at 3:40 pm | Permalink | 4 comments
Sunday, July 08, 2007

It is exactly 1 week that I have been walking around with flu. I hate to find myself feeling tired, sneezing all the time, coughing, and having a never-ended runny nose. It comes suddenly and hits hard. Sometimes I felt like being in an igloo with some Eskimos or something, and sometimes I felt like being in a tent with some Persians selling carpets. Severe pain in my face and forehead made me felt like not going to class each day I woke up.

And now my diet is panadol actifast (confusion or disorientation may cause the spelling error) with panadol soluble to wash it down my throat. I hate panadols, for it doesn’t cure flu, it just relieves pains – as analgesics don't work against viruses – and it’s a blow for my pocket money.

And the fact that flu comes with muscle aches really a big woe to my football calling. I was close of being axed from the team for playing a sloppy game during the Kolej Sukan MARA selection tryout. And it is not just that, it has follow up symptoms as well, and now I have a groin injury. Don’t get dodgy people, it is just follow ups. Now it is killing even for me to walk.

And tomorrow is Monday, with few presentations I have to work on – which seems to be suck considering my health condition. I have to agree that boys are so hard to get sick, but once they are bedridden, they could walk like a dead man.

But thanks to the coughing and sneezing, my voice turned out to be like Buble’s all this week. And Torres made his move to Liverpool when I was busy clearing my throat with phlegm. Blessings in disguise, and I am waiting more than just that.

P.S. Being a concerned pre-med student as ever, I googled flu and I found out that the virus could be spread even when I laugh. Well don’t make me laugh then, for it could cost your macho-ness.

posted by Izham Ismail at 2:59 pm | Permalink | 3 comments
Friday, July 06, 2007
Torres oh Torres
So Liverpool have signed Fernando Torres – well at least Rafa is doing something with his financial muscle provided to him, after a long wait. I was trembled in anxiety few days before Torres penned the deal, and the feeling upon knowing that the prolific striker would join the Kop was heaven. Liverpool have had a serious problem in scoring goals where they lack the Owen factor ever since Rafa took charge. The likes of Dirk Kuyt and Craig Bellamy seemed to have turned the future bright for Liverpool, but having just enough is never enough to lift a silverware – we need a phenomenon who could literally put the ball at the back of the net. Xabi Alonso would be ecstatic to know that he soon will be play alongside a familiar baby-face in Torres, given that the two has been great attendants for Luis Aragones’ Spain World Cup team. The fact that Torres is just 23 years of age made me go crazy, and having went through his fantastic resume, anyone could agree with me that he is really fit to deliver something special to the Kop.

Blondies look good in red. But baldies? I'm not so sure about it.

He possesses speed and far-fetched football brain, which is the key of his appointment as Atletico’s captain, albeit his young sperm. So which striker in the Kop’s list is the best bet to pair with this wonderkid? Well if you ask me, Kuyt could be a great spouse. With a little flick of pass and a little bit of dash out of nowhere, Kuyt could be fatal and he is perfect match while everybody was busy looking after Torres. Crouch in the other hand might give his go sometime late at the game – when Gerrard loses his composure for short passes, and his aerial ability would come in handy. Ah yes, I nearly forgot about the new boy Voronin. Well the new number 10 hasn't so much to impress on paper, but he sure has the experience muscle to deliver some good moments for The Reds. Wearing Number 10 always come with a high responsibility to do some magic - and I am pretty doubtful whether or not Voronin deserves such recognition. But he's still The Kop and maybe Rafa has a lot of plans ahead for him.

Speaking of Gerrard, his prowess as leading goal-scorer status will not come out in the wash, in fact he might be the happiest person alive to have another team-mate looking after the goals scored by the team. Maybe his bid for the most spectacular goals award might be challenged as quoted by Aragones, Torres is a player who wouldn’t score two same goals – a sign of versatility and maturity in the penalty box. But for me, it doesn’t matter who scores as long as there are someone out there who could deliver goals for Liverpool, even if it takes Pepe Reina to do that. But having El Nino would increase the possibility though.

It is my hope that Fernando Torres would settle down quickly and have his mind focused on the foremost business, to clinch the mighty EPL crown. Well if he ever does a Crouch – well remember how Crouch played shitty game during his first few months in the team? – he could come out roses in no time and surpass Drogba if not Rooney as the league’s most dangerous man in the penalty box.

Overrated or not, he is our new heartbreaker.

P.S. So who needs Luis Garcia now? Worst Number 10 in the Kop’s history.

posted by Izham Ismail at 9:33 pm | Permalink | 4 comments