Friday, March 23, 2007

The Games We Play

& The Politicians Who Celebrate Victories

Another gem has been spotted in one of my favourite blogs (which happens to be written in exquisitely expressive Malay language). The heading was a clever play on "sob-story" and shuttlecock, but I digress ...

Cerita Tangis dan Bulu Tangkis
Hari tu gua menangis. Gua dah lama dah tak menangis. Tidak pernah semenjak menonton cerita Sepet, yang membuatkan gua menangis atas kekayuan pelakonnya, bahagian-bahagian 'redundant'nya dan terlebih publisitinya....sorri, terlanjak pulak. Ok sambung cerita gua menangis. Ya, selepas lebih 20tahun, selepas melihat Razif dan Jalani menjulangnya buat kali terakhir, aku tak dapat menahan emosi bila beregu negara menang All England tempoh hari. Menang ada gaya la katakan. Sepanjang kejohanan tak pernah kalah satu set pun. Ini baru panggil Malaysia Boleh (tapi Koo, hang kontrol sikit keret hang tu. Janganlah joget kat depan net time dapat matchpoint. Ada ubi ada batas, ada hari Cina tu balas siut. Lain kali dia buat tarian singa kat depan hang baru tau!).
it gets funnier, if you can believe that, you can read the rest at:

Malaysians love their sports, we may not be very good in most of them, but we love them. Though football may be our top passion, we are very poor at it. Due to our Asian build, we can only succeed in sports which favours low center of gravity, favours nimbleness and speed, and non-contact sport please. Hence our resources should go towards that. For a nation that spends so little in sports development, and for us to be tops in squash, badminton and bowling (and even lawn bowling) is a magnificent achievement. Plus we make it almost impossible for good sportsmen and women to make a living in the real world as well.
Great atheletes are left to fend for themselves when they retire from the sport after having represented the nation for years and years with little recompense. Many are left with just technician jobs at Telekom Malaysia or Tenaga Malaysia for the rest of their lives, barely making RM2,000 a month. That's how we treat our sportsmen and women. The worst example was the way Karamjit Singh was treated by the relevant bodies and authorities - why Asia's top rally driver can get ZERO support from the government when they can plan for a stupid and illogical training facility in England costing millions is beyond me. Let's see how far can we build a sports facilty so that no one can get there and that it will be the most expensive place on earth to train. Geez... you can do the same thing with better facilities in Canberra for a fraction of the cost, if its winter conditioning you want. We can pour millions every year into F1 racing where we always finish out of the points, and yet we cannot sponsor and support a Malaysian rally driver who's at the top of his game in Asia ... hmm ... could it be ... Please PM Badawi, somebody, do something right for once!

So, Nicol David, Koo/Tan, Shalin/Zandra/Esther ... get all the sponsorships and prize monies you can, while you can, cause things will look very different 10 years from now.

Somehow, badminton is the only sport that can rally our support and give rise to frenzied emotions in us Malaysians. I cannot remember a happier moment in sports in my life than the time we won back Thomas Cup in 1992. I was watching it on TV with two other friends. When the doubles started, we opened a bottle of Chivas and agreed to down a shot of Chivas everytime the Malaysian players got a point. Imagine a three setter would involve at least 45 points, there was not enough whiskey man... but what a night! Bring back the Thomas Cup!!!

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