Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Title - Yang Berhormat Yossi Benayoun.

If not because of this bloke's brilliant timely pin-point pass, Torres wouldn't have scored. Other than his bedazzling trickery and control of the ball, he put colour when Lucas put shit on the painting, and that alone should be enough to make him a favourite.

I don't think he's had enough credit for what he has done.

Indeed, he is my favorite Jew. I hope Rafa won't leave him behind when Aquilani starts kicking the first team football.

Oh, should I be more excited for the win? Absolutely, but I'll do it after Selangor's quarter final exit pain is healed.

I've posted this on my Facebook page as a reminder to myself: Tak menang EPL tak apa, janji menang lawan Man Utd. Well done Reds, and cong-Reds-tulation, as I tweet-ed it. Pardon me, self-quoting is worse than taking pictures of youself using your right hand.

Anyway, knock knock! Who's there? Owen.

Owen who?

posted by Izham Ismail at 6:27 am | Permalink | 5 comments
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Kisah Stadium Padang Gantung
Kisah ketiga kalau awak kisah kisah yang pertama dan kedua.


I watched The Reds played at Anfield for the first time last Tuesday. I could not make it more dramatic because everything that involves Liverpool is dramatic. Thanks to Dedust, some stranger I picked up as great friend at Banting, who agreed to share his birthday present with me.

Liverpool vs Lyon, Champions League, the league that requires your team to break into top four of English Premier League to play in. That is if your team is based in England. Don't worry if you don't know this, maybe because you are a girl, ouch.


It was something special, to be part of Liverpool worst ever consecutive losses in many years, and everyone was quick to point out my presence at Anfield was the reason of the shambles (the same way my attendance at Riverside Stadium last year was noted, resulting in relegation of both teams I saw playing).

Superstition aside, Rafa Benitez was another man on the highlight, and the main reason of him being coy about what happened might be the same reason he won Liverpool the Champions League for the first time in many years: he sees what others don't.

I want to believe in that. It is understandable that Stevie's substitution in the early hour of the game might add fuel to the fire (given that those girls from Old Trafford are coming over on Sunday), but subbing Yossi Benayoun for employing a defensive Fabio Aurelio is a bad deal in a game we need to score more than one goal to win.

It was in no hesitation when I joined the crowd jeering at Rafa's ungodly decision. Soon I regret: he sees what others don't.

Riverside Stadium and Old Trafford failed to impress me albeit their Red-dish facade and the funny accented Scouser who was sitting next to me would agree especially when he sang You'll Never Walk Alone with Liverpool scarf held aloft in unison with few other thousands of The Kop, and of course few other songs I don't have a clue.

But the great and iconic ambiance of legendary British football experience Anfield had for the fans was not enough to convince Lucas to be a Brazilian and N'gog to be more decent to play for a world class team. Unknown youth Martin Kelly however was in fact more deserving of million pound worth of contract, looking at how calm and matured he fared.

It was sad to see Stevie walked away midway through the first half, and to make it worse, handed the armband to Jamie Carragher. But ignorance kills, as observations would see Jamie Carragher did well as a captain, and did well organizing the defence especially in the presence of junior Kelly whom he could pick on.

I think everyone would agree that good leadership is not enough for good results, because at the end of the day, it was Lyon who stood tall.

Delgado arrived at the far post and turn in a goal, and Liverpool's Champions League ambitions are as good as Malaysia's Vision 2020.


Transportation was a bit bitchy. Busses were full and we had to walk for an hour and compete with thirsty Scousers to get a taxi.

It was not a good night empirically.

But for a Malaysian boy who flew thousand miles away to see his heroes playing right in front of his eyes after countless hours of watching them play from kedai mamak and to live a dream of many Malaysian boys, it was a helluva night.


This post is dedicated to Izwan Ismail, Abdul Mualim Shah, Shamsul Azhar, Ahmad Nurhaziq, Amirul Hafidz, Muhammad Faisol, Zulhisyam Zarwawi, Muhd Abu Huzaifah, Muhammad Fitri, Azlifaizal Latip and of course, Khairul 'Dedust' Izwan.

And that is what I call dramatic.

posted by Izham Ismail at 3:23 am | Permalink | 4 comments
Monday, October 19, 2009
Tea With Nigella Ashworth

You are Allie Hamilton when I am not looking.

You are Marla Singer when I am not looking.

You are Victoria Lathum when I am not looking.

You are Maria Quesa Dilla when I am not looking.

You are Sharon Pintey when I am not looking.

You are you when I am not looking.

Until I enter the room, you are not anymore.

Don't do things out of fear of losing me.

Do things out of fear of losing yourself.

posted by Izham Ismail at 8:44 pm | Permalink | 3 comments
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Horror, Fantasy, Superstitious and Stupidity
Just what is fucking wrong with these guys. Mind my language, but I just can't stand the way things are governed, decided and manipulated by sheer stupidity rather than basing to facts and logical reasons.

Even worse, when religious matter is intertwined with moral values by words uttered by the most unlikely human being who themselves, a slave of rabble-rousing chantings: fucking politicians.

So these people, this time trying to take on filmography, and trying to be smart by trying to take a piss out of it. This is how they put it into words they expect us (at least me) to understand:

Puteri Umno wants the Government to ban the production of “horror, mystical and superstitious” movies, claiming such films can weaken the faith of Muslims in the country. - The Star

It easily raised my eyebrow, and spoon the fucking anger out of me right from the beginning of the news.

Let me cool down and say this in English.

I am sure Puteri Umno were not born adults, and were at a point looking for some entertainment other than Spektra and Majalah 3. As for myself, while too much Pi Mai Pi Mai Tang Tu might do a boost to my Malay-comedy dexterity, it might stifle the development of other important areas of my brain. So it is not good. I did not know all these while a toddler, so I consider myself lucky for being flexible enough not to watch Pi Mai Pi Mai Tang Tu all day and switched to Mighty Morphine Power Rangers and Scooby Doo once in a while.

The first movie I watched was Anastasia, and I’ve always love Rudyard Kupling’s brilliant masterpiece The Jungle Book. Not to mention, Aladdin from the Arabian Nights. I even forced my dad to buy Aladdin the video game on Sega, out of the craze of the amazing film.

If not because of football, my relationship with my brother blossomed by his nick of teasing me to tears. One of the ways was through a film any kid my age would remember: It. He would remind me the look of the nasty clown’s face and would do voices to scare and throw me into panic, especially when parents are away at night.

I am completely sure you can come up with your own set of experiences about how fantasy, horror and superstitious movies, books or whatever touches you as you grow up.

Imagine life without Stephen King’s imagination, Tolkien’s world of fantasy and Rowling’s sea of creativity. I am sure Rowling wouldn't be a Rowling in the first place! And imagine life without Rowling. Millions of kids and adults would be left untouched by her amazing writing artistry.

She casually teaches her readers what it is like to paint emotion through writing, and if not because of Harry Potter success, she wouldn't be able to fund a number of NGOs dedicated to literally save life of million others like through Multiple Sclerosis Society of the UK.

Just to note, she lost her mother to Multiple Sclerosis, and one can imagine how big it is for her to contribute and fight against the disease, and fantasy world and her creativity gave her just that.

Brain is a complex organ, and should never be dealt with objectivity. It is not a good idea to base the decision to ban fantasy, horror and superstitious movies just because you feel it can weaken the faith of Muslims in the country.

One thing to consider, is it just Muslims you are talking to? Are other religions so perfect that their followers wouldn’t get their faith weakened by watching Harry Potter or The Exorcist?

Art is so beautiful that you can take the most dubious and ghastly element and turn it into something beautiful. Along with it, it is compulsory to tie messages and wisdom, and it is your choice to do it subtly or otherwise.

That is why Puteri Umno have to start reading Harry Potter, The Lord of The Rings, and start watching The Exorcist to understand subtle messages underneath superstitious elements we ought to think a disease to our soul. Brain is more subjective than you think it is.

Most importantly, it is good for them to learn the meaning of tact, of humility and wisdom, because too much talking is not good for the soul.

What about money politics, contempt and trash talking? I am pretty sure they are in fact things that can weaken your religious faith, mister. Oh, missy.

Akademi Fantasia? Terang-terangan unsur fantasi kan. Ha ha.

P.S. Picture, the making of a horror movie about a superstitious bloke living in a fantasy world. Tak lama lagi kena ban lah tu.

P.P.S. Thanks for the wishes guys. I was 21 years old many years ago.

posted by Izham Ismail at 12:19 am | Permalink | 9 comments
Thursday, October 08, 2009

I think, to comment on other people's work of art, you have to first, make an art yourself. It should be read the same way as in commenting other people's writing; you have to first write before trying to write people off, or whatever comes your way.

But doing all of it without reading would be a complete tragedy.

So, grab a book to read before you grab a pen to kill.


posted by Izham Ismail at 11:56 pm | Permalink | 6 comments
Tuesday, October 06, 2009
Pemain Malaysia Di Hadapan Gol

Title - Sepakan tak cantik, tapi mahukan gol.


I woke up to two things today, Real Madrid first defeat in La Liga after a summer of eventful cash splurge and the defeat of Del Potro in the first round of Japan Open after a dream triumph in the US Open. All these knocked my head on how fragile success could be, if nothing good is done with lingering complacency.

In less than a week, Zulkefly Mohamad Omar will walk in the ring as Pakatan Rakyat looking for their straight win in all eight matches.


Benitez brought lots of results for Liverpool, most of them in the hardest of way unthinkable, like allowing Liverpool to play badly in the first half against Milan before turning the game to a historic Champions League moment and bringing Andriy Voronin and Robbie Keane to Anfield as the new number 10 and 7 consecutively.

Great managers share an amazing trait of spotting talents that cost million more in few years. Arsene Wenger is the epitome of managerial talent spotting prowess. Just look at how he did it with Thierry Henry and lines of Arsenal-bred Forbes-listed players.

But it is the trait that Rafa Benitez just doesn't have, no matter how stylish he wins the game for Liverpool. He tried to groom an N'Gog, an Insua and an El-Zhar when he failed to give final touch to the already groomed Ryan Babel. And then came Lucas Leiva into the fray of Melwood's failing grooming saloon.

End result, another year of hoping the other big four will slump to a certain Hull City or in other words, to call for luck to win Liverpool a Premier League crown.

While I have to thank him for Fernando Torres and of course, 2005 Champions League, I think Rafa Benitez has to go because losing 2-0 twice in a row is not funny. It is not because I don't believe in great managers longevity theory, but I think great managers stay long because they are simply great.

Or Alberto Aquilani could prove me wrong and Rafa could still taste the non-alcoholic Standard Chartered paycheck next season.


I watched 'The Invention of Lying' last week. I have a huge amount of respect for Ricky Gervais, the man who doesn't have to pull a stupid face to be funny. The Office is his brilliant franchise, and I thought his second movie would make me adore him even more.

It is funny how arts work sometimes. An artist could be a star in a day on the day he made a brilliant piece and be scorned contemptibly on the day he made lousy art, as if he never made anything brilliant. This unfortunate reality applies to footballers as well who are always under the spotlight of fans' selfish expectations.

That is why while Gervais' 'The Invention of Lying' was totally out of my tune, I wish to remember him when he touches me through The Office.

And to remember Manchester United version of David Beckham.


Indonesia struggle with earthquake, typhoon heads to Japan, storm stalls over Philippines and hatred still making rounds in Malaysia. I just hope we all know that Someone is not happy.


Gerak dulu.

posted by Izham Ismail at 4:46 pm | Permalink | 1 comments
Monday, October 05, 2009

I don't know about you, but Indonesians I know are sweet and better looking than most Malaysians. And please, if there was a war anyway, please leave them alone.
posted by Izham Ismail at 2:16 am | Permalink | 3 comments