Monday, March 07, 2011

Honest Hornet

It has been a while since I last ate a very good breakfast of nasi lemak. So on Friday I decided to take the LRT and walk to the warong near my wife's office. It's my reading day so I have all the time to spend there and anywhere with the books that I want to fact I wanted to get "Teohlogy" by Patrick Teoh because I heard it's really a good read.
So, I started the day with a good nasi lemak breakfast lah....
It was OK, the sambal was a tad too salty than usual. The kakak at the counter is the same - with no terima-kasih in exchage of the money I paid for the foods and sporting the usual unfriendly face, it's a good thing people just care about the food not how they are being greeted or appreciated for that matter. The crowd are there...some old people (pensioners perhaps) and also of course some young people (self-employed like ngoh-hai leh.....or maybe students....or people having "kopi-break" or "mengular")...Chinese, Malays, Indians, Really Malaysia lah so to say....

The thing about good food, I found it difficult to get consistent quality from any "warong" in general. The quality and that "special touch" starts to deteriorate especially when they start "expanding" their menus or extending their serving space - more tables and chairs but same workforce and kitchen. Mass production is also the factor - to my observation - for the deterioration. That's what normally kills a good warong or restaurant or any outlet that serves good grubs. (Please note that "kills" in this context would refer to to my keen interest to go back to have another serving, not the warong goes ka-put and bungkus already lah!)


Some people - or probably they would like themselves to be addressed as businessmen - just have never realized that some business is never meant to go bigger than what it really is. Business is being expanded due to demands and (ready or not) the ambition of the shareholders to make it big.
Why big? To bag in more money. To accumulate more wealth. To get that latest HornDuh SeeArVee...use Proton car where got standard? To buy that latest eyePhone or BrackBerry - those thwo are only phones nowadays, other than that are not phone already?? To get that latest iPad 2 so that can show off and play Angry Bird-bird whil siping expensive coffee that you have no idea where it came from. To go have holiday in Australia and show the photos to office mates like everybody else name it. Kiasu laaa...Boleh-Land also becoming like our southern neighbor already, only just a bit worse because we boleh maa?

Reality - what started off as a simple AMBITION somehow turned and lead to GREED.

Before you start flaming (aahhh come on, you do know that it is easier to flame what a person has written rather than writing about some article yourself right? Shortest way to fame...duh!)...take a look at the matter from a different angle.

If you are selling good foods and people keep on coming to your warong, you know you would already have loyal customers and they keep on bringing their friends and families and business contacts to enjoy that plate of nasi lemak....your business is not food anymore but SERVICES.

The cold fact about service (especially in relation to food) is you cannot train others to create the same feel & quality 100%.

...and that 100% is what you have been giving the customer all these while.

Think about it.

There can only be one well let's just say "Warong Bawah Pokok" will never be the same if the brand is served inside Pavilion. That's total "wannabe" already, argue what you may but it's a wannabe.

...and for that same reason too, my lovely wife's "PassionCreative Bakery Studio" products is never on the selves of any other kedai or petrol kiosks even though many have approached and suggest for it..not thanx, you do your own business, we do ours and we intend to be in control of our business wanna get rich fast, go ahead...we want to live a good life and enjoy it for real.

After the nasi lemak breakfast I head on to KLCC Kinokuniya with but one target in mind - buy that book by Patrick Teoh.
...and that was what I did.
...and I found it very hard to stop reading "Teohlogy" so I had to force myself to stop and do some other stuff....before an hour, I found myself reading the book again with that "some other stuff" only half cooked! :o)

The book is really marvelous - to my definition. Patrick tells what he sees and thinks. His opinion. Real story, real situation. What he sees as white, he wrote it as white.

...and the language is sincere too...some may say it is "kurang ajar" but I'd say it is not "kurang ajar" at all, it is what you might say in a normal conversation with good buddies...and thus since maybe you are just too lazy to write and perhaps the kind that would always try hard to look and be proper in front of any other people and can only be your true self when you are alone in your stinking "rumah kecik" should either be quiet or you could try writing your views on the same topics instead. Try lah....but do it all in your stinking "rumah kecik" first because that's the only place you can truly be your own self!

I have a reason why I wrote the above lah. (Not because I am trying to write like Patrick Teoh ok?!). A couple of months a go I wrote a nasty "kurang ajar" article about a topic. Many positives and negatives comments flooded the article in my FB, not in this blog la because we all know already what, people now lepak FB need other thing from the net lah...FB only..further more, Boleh-landers are generally lazy to read, anything more than 3 lettered words is already too tiring for the general Boleh-landers....even SMS also must in short forms...correct?

Anyway the response to the article was a tsunami and I then only allowed limited access - reading back the comments, I can say frankly I am ashamed to see how people think and present themselves in writing. The worst kind would be those trying hard to sound like an educated kerbau pendek and comes up with ridiculous points simply "hantam" the article writer back for being a writer telling that white is white. (that is why, a true photographer understand the white balance...otherwise you will say white is blue...your white balance is wrong lah....busy with your stupid tone or what??)

My point here is simple....I have actually mentioned it in one of the sentences above - If you have anything to say against an article or writer, write a proper article. If you just put up a lengthy comment in it, chances are you're not going to be heard....simply because you just don't have enough points to present. Or maybe you just don't know how to elaborate your other points. Or maybe you are just trying to steal some lime-lights and be a hero by -chance. Or maybe because your braincell is just as active as that of a dead sloth.

So, coming back to "Teohlogy: The Word According To PATRICK TEOH" - it is a honest view of what we are breathing and living with here in Boleh-Land. Tabik spring to Patrick for being a sincere writer...heck even the preface is blardy sincere and I could not think of any other witty preface that I have read other than that he has done!

So you tunggu apa lagi? If you have not read Off The Edge from 2005 to 2010....GO BUY "TEOHLOGY" and start reading lah!! :o)

The fact might hurt a lot like being stung by a hornet (I can say this because I have had the experience, being a kampung boy!) but like it or not, that honesty needs to be told. Boleh?

After good hours of reading and writing, I had lunch with my Petronas friends - Hazarizal, Nazri & Sunardi - before I got the Masjid As-Syakirin for Jumaat prayer. Khutbah in English. Good. But it would be better if the khatib really read it with emotion and I am not saying the khatib is not pronouncing the words right enough...I am saying this: Reading is reading. Khutbah is not at all like just reading off the text.

Some "leaders" read their speech....politicians read their speech. Words that come out of their mouths may mean NOTHING for those who respect the intelligence given by Allah...
So in this case of the khatib, I salute him for trying his best but he can do better....he must do better....reading is not it.

HOWEVER...the worst thing that I wish I would not encounter ever again since I last did a prayer there actually happened ...hampeh punye executives (not naming any company but they are executives la...who else would be talking London but looks like petai eating Malays who wear expensive watches, slacks/khakis and not cover their head for prayers?)

Next to me, on my right, there was this bunch of youngsters (I admit I am old but many told me I look younger than my age...ok ok I am off the track a bit...ahahah!) was talking about investing in something, the amount of money they paid, the money they got back.....while that poor khatib was trying hard to deliver the khutbah for the benefit of all present. Stupid yuppies.

My left side "neighbor" during that khutbah was busy...sleeping.

Then there was this other guy behind me, so totally busy with his phone calls...

My conclusion for them:
a) The stupid yuppies:
They have not been getting much from their company....kesian....stylo tapi sengkek? it like the businessmen who just want to expand just for the sake of expanding like I mentioned above - those executives may have enough but they just want more because everybody is trying to get more than they could possibly chew...isn't it?
Or...maybe those executives have not completed their kelas agama...insyaAllah next Friday they might have completed it and would be quiet when the khatib delivers the khutbah in true emotion and capturing the intention of all in the masjid.

Maybe they think it is ok to talk about anything during the Jumaat prayer session...naive but ...Allah Maha Pengampun maaa?

b) The sleeping neighbor:
He's a very dedicated employee. Probably worked long hours and through the night. That's why a nap duting khutbah is important....because he cannot sleep at his workstation - Boss marah!!

...but sleep during khutbah...Allah Maha Pengampun maaa?

The guy busy with phone calls:
Must be a star performer. Or the boss.
Company paid for the phone & bills so have to answer the call also lah....during khutbah...Allah Maha Pengampun maaa?

Honestly.....I am not a good option when it comes to being role model (and rust me I really suck big time when it come to being a model...or shooting a model!!) but I try my best to be a good HambaAllah, a good rakyat and, my ramblings - as hurtful as it may be to some including me - is my way to venting my frustrations and voicing my make me a better person....

Want to flame me ah?
Write lah....but like I said earlier (read the whole rambling please!)...maybe you have to do it in your stinking "rumah kecik".

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