Thursday, July 28, 2005

The Malays - Who Are We?

Malay Annals
Originally uploaded by
"I cannot but consider the Malayu nation as one people, speaking one language, though spread over so wide a space, preserving their character and customs, in all the maritime states lying between Sulu Seas and the Southern Oceans." - Stamford Raffles, 'On the Malayu Nation', Asiatic Researchers, 12 (1816):103.

"........for the purposes of this article, however, only those among these races which bear the name of Orang Malayu, speak the Malayan language, and represent the dominant people of the land, can be included under the title of Malays. These people inhabit the whole of the Malayan Peninsula to the borders of lower Siam, the islands in the vicinity of the mainland, the shores of Sumatra and some portions of the interior of that island, Sarawak and Brunei in Borneo, and some parts of Dutch Borneo, Batavia and certain districts in Java, and some of the smaller islands of the archipelago..........." -
The present-day Malays of the Peninsula and coasts of the Malay Archipelago are described anthropologically as deutero-Malays and are the descendants of the tribal Proto-Malays mixed with modern Indian, Thai, Arab and Chinese blood. In northern states of Perlis and Kedah, inter-marriages with Thais were commonplace. The east coast state of Kelantan still has traces of Javanese culture that date back to the era of the Majapahit Empire of the fourteenth century. The Sumatran Kingdom of Acheh dominated Perak for over a century. The Bugis from Indonesia's Celebes Islands colonised Selangor and fought for rulers in States along the length of the Peninsula - from Kedah to Johor. The Minangkabaus from Sumatra has their own independent chiefdoms in what is today Negeri Sembilan. This mix of different races to form what is the Modern Malay.
Saya terpanggil untuk menjadikan topik di atas sebagai 'entree' terbaru kerana beberapa orang rakan dari Indonesia agak terkejut apabila saya mengaku yang ibu saya mempunyai darah keturunan Jawa dan Banjar (manakala ayah saya pula kacukan India Muslim, Arab dan Melayu Thai). Bagi masyarakat di Malaysia ianya bukanlah sesuatu yang asing atau baru. Majoriti masyarakat Indonesia berpendapat bahawa masyarakat pribumi yang tinggal di Malaysia ialah bangsa dari suku Melayu sahaja - 'purely 100% Malays' , sama seperti suku Jawa di Pulau Jawa, Banjar di Kalimantan Selatan, Bugis di Kepulaun Sulawesi dan Minangkabau di Sumatera.
Sekiranya anda berkunjung ke bandar-bandar atau perkampungan di Semenanjung Malaysia, dan bertanyakan soalan mengenai bangsa atau keturunan, dialog di bawah akan pasti anda dengar.
Achmad: Boleh saya tumpang tanya, saudara ini orang apa?
Ali: Saya orang Malaysia
Achmad: Ialah orang Malaysia, tetapi keturunan apa?
Ali: Saya orang Melayu
Achmad: Melayu? Melayu itu asalnya dari mana?
Ali: Dari sinilah!
Achmad: Orang Melayu asli?
Ali: Oh! tidak, bapa saya orang Jawa dari Parit Ponorogo kat Batu Pahat, tapi mak saya memang asal Johor Bahru, orang Bugis. Isteri saya pun ada darah Bugis jugak, tapi dah campur dengan orang Banjar, sebelah mak dia.
Saya masih teringat cerita dari arwah datuk saya beberapa tahun dulu. Peristiwa ketika Konfrontasi antara Indonesia-Malaysia di awal kemerdekaan Malaysia. Indonesia telah menghantar sejumlah tentera untuk menyerang hendap di pantai barat Johor (Pontian, Batu Pahat, Muar). Tentera Indonesia ini telah masuk ke dalam rumah-rumah orang kampung pada waktu malam dan cuba menakut-nakutkan mereka. Tetapi apa yang sebaliknya berlaku, tentera Indonesia ini terkejut dan merasa sungguh terharu. Orang "Melayu" atau Malaysia yang hendak mereka serang itu ialah dari keturunan mereka sendiri! Orang-orang Jawa yang telah menjadi warga Malaysia, telah berhijrah ke tanah Melayu lebih 100 tahun dahulu. Mereka masih bertutur dalam bahasa Jawa, mengamalkan kehidupan desa seperti di Tanah Jawa dan yang pasti....mereka masih makan tempe!

Friday, July 22, 2005

The Lone Angler in Johor Bahru

The Lonely Angler in Johor Bahru

So many things happened to me since last weekend. On last Saturday, I attended Zara Hair Saloon soft opening at Chismosa, graciously opened by the Sultan's nephew, had an amusing chat with the Indonesian Consulate to Johor (we ended the conversation on the saloon's chair!) and Gusti Raden Putri 'A', attended the food testing of my friend's new halal Chinese restaurant (extremely beautiful Zen arte deco) at her hotel right after the haircut. On Sunday Morning together with my parents, we went to uncle's 'Dusun Buah-buahan' or fruits orchard some 32 km from our house. Plenty of fruits especially Yellow and Red Rambutans, Fragrance Jackfruit, Duku Langsat, and we also collected some Calamansi Limes, Bird's Eye Chilli (Cili Padi), Petai and Milk Fruit or Sukun. HRH Tunku 'S' gave me a wonderful present for my birthday at her palace on Tuesday night, Zharny, the 'Padang Boy' accompanied me - thanks dear! Test drive for my new car on Wednesday, Im not sure which one I should buy, Proton Perdana, Honda CRV or Mercedez Benz C200, gonna go for second test drive for Merz this Satuday. I had good food and laugh on Friday night at Chismosa. And tonight, I just want to stay at home, drop-by at Carrefour on the way back for some 'jajan' or titbits. Happy weekend all!

Saturday, July 16, 2005


I came acrossed this article from somebody's blog and totally agree with him. All comments are welcome.
"I am outraged, partly because of all the misdirected outrage that I saw today. To use an old clichĂ©, I am, yet again, shocked by man’s inhumanity to man. At least seven hundred Iraqis have been killed—just in the last two months. Tens of thousands of Iraqis have been injured—just in the last two months. Overall, because of the American invasion of Iraq, a quarter of a million Iraqis have been killed. Millions of Iraqis have been injured, maimed, or incapacitated. Millions of other Iraqis have suffered unspeakable deprivations and horrors of various kinds, not to mention outright torture, all because of and only because of the invasion.

Had there been any humanity left in this world, the carnage in Iraq would have ended the reign of the American Empire long ago. There would have been such an outcry of morally outraged humanity the like of which would never have been heard before. Yet, there is hardly a peep from anyone. Even the daily toll of the dead has disappeared from newscasts.

Today, 37 people died in bomb blasts in London. 700 others were injured. There has been nothing else in the news today. Is the blood of these 37 people any redder than the blood of the quarter million Iraqi dead? Hotlines have been set up for Canadians and others to call to find out if anyone they knew is among the casualties. Where are the hotlines for Iraqis to call to find out the fate of their loved ones? Am I being unsympathetic to the plight of the British dead and injured? Are you being sympathetic to the plight of the Iraqi dead and injured?

All that a sane and rational person can hope for is that this attack will have the same kind of effect on the British people as the similar series of bombings in Madrid last year had on the Spanish people. The Madrid bombings incited the Spanish people to throw out the Bushite government of Aznar, and elect a new government that put a quick end to Spain’s complicity in the Iraqi genocide. Will the British people finally say a loud and clear No to the government of the ignominy whose name is Blair?"

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Indonesian Queer Film - Arisan

Arisan Film
Originally uploaded by
I read an article from the website 2 years ago about this controversial and most talked about (among the queer especially) film in Jakarta and so excited to watch them. I managed to buy the vcd from a street monger by luck. It is a valuable contribution to the world of Indonesian cinema, ARISAN! is the second film from acclaimed director Nia Di Nata. Focusing on a group of friends who live the high life in Jakarta, ARISAN! illustrates how their lives aren't quite as great as they may seem. Puppy-faced Sakti is a successful young architect, desperate to keep his homosexuality hidden from his domineering mother and his gal-pals Meimei and Andien--especially when he finds himself in a romance with movie producer Nino. Things hot up as Sakti enters into a relationship, with Di Nata steering the film into a sympathetic and realistic portrait of what it means to be gay in Indonesia at the turn of the 21st century. Very challenging and successfull I would say for a queer movie to be premiered in a world's largest Muslim community.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Happy Birthday Mom!

Mom's Birthday in Pastel
Originally uploaded by

We celebrated Mak's birthday on last Friday night at a golf resort nearby our home. It was a surprise party or I would call 'makan-makan' gathering for Mak. I've invited Mak Ngah's family together with my other siblings to celebrate with us. The live band musicians serenading us with oldies and dangdut numbers. Abah and Pak Ngah really enjoyed the music and the female singers as well. I can see tears in Mak's eyes when all of us sing the birthday song accompanied by the live band. The cake was superb, her favourite - strawberry ice cream cake, its colour matches Mak's baju kurung and scarf ;-). Semoga Mak dipanjangkan umur, bertambah rezeki, diberi ketenangan dan kebahagiaan - dunia dan akhirat. We love u Mak!

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Mencari sesuatu......Kedamaian....

Birthday Dinner Sis Judy

It was a lovely sunny day when we left Mersing. I was there on last April with a bunch of friends for a weekend camping. We really had a great time doing some fishings, sunbathings, BBQ, watersports etc. It only took us 2 hours from Johor Bahru city to this beautiful sandy beaches. Tadi seronok baca artikel pasal MAWI. Aku tak peduli apa orang nak kata, memang lah aku ni fanatik MAWI. Bukan dibuat2, ianya datang sendiri, secara tiba2. Maybe MAWI tu ada aura agaknya. Nak jadikan citer, aku ni pun asal Kulai gak. Sebelum nih tak pernah ler aku gila2 tengok AF, tahun ni plak macam kena rasuk, ni lah yg dikatakan fenomena Tsumawi. MAWI ada X-factor. Hari ni jugak aku asyik teringatkan si Rhoni, kenapa ek? Aku suka berkawan dgn dia sebab dia ni low-profile, educated, simple dan tak der kerenah. Tapi yang buat kengkawan aku dan aku sendiri begitu hairan ialah.....kenapa aku ni senang sangat berkenalan dgn bebudak Indon. Bebudak Indon ni jugak, senang sangat sangkut dgn aku. Sampai aku punya bahasa Indon pun dah very fluent, orang Indon sendiri pun ingat aku asal sana. Memang ler tok nenek moyang aku asal sana, tapi tak ler sampai 'badi' tu aku bawak.Sebelah mak aku ada darah orang Banjar dari Banjarmasin, then ada plak darah 'biru' atau ningrat dari Kraton di tanah jawa, tu belum citer lagik pasal bapak aku yg memacam mixed. Hari ni pun aku asyik pikir pasal adik aku yg nak sambung master kat UTM. Rasa macam nak pi temankan dia mendaftar jer, kesian plak dia pi sorang2, dah ler pompuan.