30 November 2005

Arsenal 3 - 0 Reading

Reading are the tea bag of football teams - we're never in the Cup for very long. I really enjoyed the match last night despite the result. Having been to see Reading lose to the likes of Plymouth, Coventry and Norwich, it was actually quite a privilege to see Reading lose to a team like Arsenal and to do it at a place as famous as Highbury.

Al and I got to the ground at 6.30 where we were supposed to meet Has and his mates but they didn't turn up til 7.30 (15 mins before kick-off. Thanks). There was a fun atmosphere outside the ground and we mingled a bit where the Reading fans were. The Reading team bus came on the road where we were and everyone started cheering, clapping and singing at it only to realise when it got closer that it was empty and the players had already gone in to the stadium.

The first sight of Highbury.

Football fans are funny man. Al and I were arguing about whether we'd rather have Ronaldinho or Wayne Rooney in our team and this Arsenal fan butts in to tell us how crap he thought Gilberto was. He then told us that Arsenal have always lost in the Carling Cup when he's come to a match so he was going to change his routine. Instead of sitting in the North Stand, he got a ticket for the East and, most bizzarely, instead of buying his habitual quarter pounder with cheese from the dodgy football ground burger van, he was going to get a hot dog instead. He said with full sincerity that it would help the team win. I chuckled to myself inside...but I guess it did sort of work in the end.

A great view from the East Stand Lower.

Even funnier were the fans inside. As we were sitting with the Arsenal fans I had to keep quiet while Reading were doing well (yes, for the whole 15 minutes that we remained at 0-0). I managed to get up and sing some Arsenal songs but kept quiet during the anti-Reading ones.

The Royals in our traditional huddle. I had to be careful taking this pic because it would have been obvious to the Arsenal fans around me who I was actually there to support.

Having said that, I did find their bating of Reading's big ginger striker Dave Kitson quite amusing. Whenever he touched the ball everyone around us got up and yelled "Ginger! Freeeeeeeeakkkkkk!". The most excited I got was when Wenger put Cygan on as a sub for Arsenal and I thought Reading now had a chance. The Reading fans were giving him stick and the guy behind me shouted "He might be bald but he's not gingerrrrrrrrrrrr!" I still don't understand why it's so bad to be ginger.

Reading fans in fine voice.

In the Arsenal stand showing exactly where I actually belong (ie. with the Reading fans behind me).


Al and I wanted pics of us at this famous stadium. Has didn't want one. He said taking photos is "gay". Got a pic of him reading his programme. He has red-eye as punishment for his comments:

The game itself was enjoyable. Arsenal were a class apart, espescially van Persie and Reyes, and 3-0 was probably a fair reflection of their dominance.

van Persie, team-mates and Arsenal fans celebrate his goal putting Arsenal 2-0 up.

I got so excited whenever Reading even got in the Arsenal box and took a photo pretty much everytime it happened (don't worry, there are more photos than just this).

This header by ginger Kitson forced a damn good save out of the Arsenal keeper.

Oh well...

After this slap up supper, a return to the bread and butter. Reading have a home league game against Brighton in two weeks. Anyone who wants to go see the mighty Royals, give me a call.

If everything goes well in that game and the rest of the league season, we'll be back playing Arsenal again next year. Come on you Royals!

24 November 2005

Look what came in the post today

Woohoo! I can't wait.

23 November 2005

A bachelor's kitchen nightmares

"The first time you cook for a woman, it can bind you together for life. You are sharing an experience that not only touches all five senses, but reaches deep into your emotional consciousness, gently plucking strings and touching chords in each other that you never knew existed, creating a symphonic harmony of oneness from what was duality." (Ross Anderson, The Times, 22.11.05).

The writer has obviously never seen me cook before. 'Cooking' for me tonight involved putting some meat under a grill and some greens in a boiling pot.

Yum Yum. Queue up ladies.

It certainly wasn't passion that nearly set my house alight tonight. It was my stupid negligence. I left the oven mits above the grill and left the kitchen for a bit to do some work. By complete chance I walked back in and noticed the room was a bit smoky. The mits had caught fire. I stuck them under the sink as fast as I could, sighed the biggest sigh of relief I have ever known and thanked God repeatedly for helping me.

I think I better buy some new mits.

The lesson from this is not to attempt to cook and use the bachelor's best friend (aka the microwave) instead. Alternatively, just learn to cook properly and take more care in the kitchen.

Warwick Weekend

Didn't take nearly enough photos over a fun weekend but Chris did and has stuck them on the Warwick05 blog. I drove up with Chris and Febri. Met them in Uxbridge. I was happy for the break in the drive when I picked them up because I was bursting for a piss like never before.

We noticed the new pink UniRider buses from Leamington to campus. Chris wanted a photo so I did a bit of cheeky driving jsut to get close enough to take one. Got a bit nostalgic as we came to campus ("Wah Feb...Sudah mulai nih, sudah mulai!"). We took some photos of our arrival on the top of Car Park 8. Looked like tourists and got wierd looks from people walking by.

Seeing all the Isoc lads was great on Friday. There was good banter as always at lunch and in the evening at Zaf's house. Dissapointed not to get some Pro Evo time in there but next time boys...that means you too Mawji. Football was fun. It was damn cold and I could feel my groin and calf muscles at snapping point for most of the game. Asif was in a t-shirt. Ali was in shorts. Nutters.

Spent the night in Vaq's room. It's a nice little pad. Thought I'd add to it by contributing to Vaq's staple diet of lucozade and chocolate weetabix minis. I wanted to take a photo of him sleeping in it when I left in the morning but thought against it.

Saturday afternoon was magic. Saw Febri, Fel, Richard and Eugenia as well as Hanna, which was a nice surprise. Eugenia and Richard were on top comic form as normal. Eugnia, I can never go in to a bathroom without studying the layout of tiles on the floor anymore. We went for a buffet at Five Rivers in Leam and I engaged in an unofficial eating competition with my old culinary consumption nemesis Fel. I think I won by 4 plates to 2 and a half but this result might not cont as Fel wasn't feeling so well. This was evident again when we walked up the parade when one minute she was saying how much she liked the cold and the next was screaming and running for the warmth of the car.

Then met Roy and went to AOR for tea. Had a good chat. Agnes continues to scare the living daylights out of me ("So Mus, tell me something interesting..."). Just joking. Thank you girls for the much appreciated scarf for my birthday. The girls looked very glamorous as they prepared for their night out so Roy and I left them to it.

I said goodbye to Vaq and Khalil at Rootes and then saw Vicki (my old manager) at the Arts Centre to wish her luck for her new job at Brum airport. She gave me my job at the Arts Centre and I am ever grateful for that because I loved working there.

Thank you all for a good time. I hope I come back to visit again soon.

21 November 2005


Very quick cheeky post from back of the school computer room here. Had a great weekend up in Warwick. Really enjoyed seeing everyone. Thanks espescially to Vaq for lending me his very comfy bed. Got some pics. Will put them up in due course.

Meanwhile, I want to ask: Why did the cornish pastie cross the road? Because he was meat n potatoe.

Trust me, it is far funnier in oral form.

16 November 2005

Computer going away

Computer going away for repair. Don't know how long til it comes back but hopefully will still be able to do some quick cheeky posts from the school computers.

Been trying to back up some files just in case the proverbial hits the fan. Cool looking back at old photos and reviewing the music collection. Saw some shocking tunes that I had absolutely no hesitation in not backing up. For example, Mandy Moore's
I Want to Be With You,Ween's Ocean Man from the SpongeBob Squarepants soundtrack and Come Out and Play by Offspring. What was I thinking?

I also found some pics that I had no qualms about letting go of either:

We all learn from our mistakes.

15 November 2005

The thing with winter

The thing with winter is that you have to wear more clothes. It was freezing cold the other day and I made the mistake of going for a run wearing shorts. It was cold and unpleasant and means I'll have to start using trackiebums, which I don't want to do because they impede your movement and there's something quite pleasant about feeling mud splat against your skin rather than cloth when you're running through fields and woods.

The added layers thing also got me on the train today as well. People (admittedly including myself) need to wear whopper coats to keep themselves warm and this means you get the squish on the chairs. A guy sat next to me and squeezed me up against the window. Someone sat next to him and squeezed him against me. It was cosy but too cosy. Bums were in contact and unless I wanted to sit on the luggage racks I was going to have to put up with it.

It's going to be cold until April and I need to get on the train everyday, which means relentless bum contact for the next 5 months. Wish me luck.

13 November 2005

England 3 - 2 Argentina

Oh my days was it good! I can normally never be arsed with Sven's friendlies and I considered not watching this one but I'm glad I did. It's probably the best 90 minutes of football I've seen this season and DEFINETLY the best I've seen England involved in. Rooney was incredible, as were Robinson, Gerrard, Beckham and, for those final fabulous four minutes, Owen.

To say England will now win the World Cup is premature but I can't wait for the tournament to start now, espescially when the likes of Beckham and Sorin whip out their haircuts. If anyone in Hollywood fancies making a film of Rapunzel they should consider these two for the lead role:

Add Rio Ferdinand's do to the mix and you've got yourself a blockbuster:

If anyone is interested in collaborating with me to make this film, just drop me an e-mail or leave a comment. I will probably tell you I was only joking but you're free to take the idea on yourself. I won't even charge you for the IP.

Can I just say...

...that KT Tunstall's song Other Side of the World is beautiful. It has been getting the repeat button treatment from me this week. If I wasn't living alone, someone would definetly have told me to shut up by now. Check this out to hear it and see the video.

10 November 2005

Being very very careful

My computer went a bit doolaly last week. The battery hasn't wanted to recharge sometimes. I think there's something wrong with the adaptor lead because it'll only charge when I stick it in at a very specific angle. Last night it didn't want to charge at all.

I managed to get it going by complete accident. I'd left it on the floor of the sitting room while I was trying to get it to charge. I just left it there after I gave up trying for about twenty minutes to work it. When I got up I accidentally kicked it and voila! The beast came alive. Problem now is that I don't want to move it a single inch in case it turns off again. Seriously. This thing is staying on the floor connected to the mains whatever happens and I am sitting on the floor twisted between the sofa and the phone table while I type.

It'll be like this until Wednesday when the PC repair people are going to come and get this baby to fix it. Apparently they have to send it to Belgium to get it done. The computer gets to go to Belgium because it refuses to work.

I want to go to Belgium. If I get knackered and refuse to study will someone come and take me to Belgium to get fixed up? My back hurts already. I want to go to Belgium.

07 November 2005

Pro Evo FIVE

After yesterday's Real v Zaragoza game everyone was worried about Jonathan Woodgate's hamstring. While I do feel sorry for the guy, I must say I had other things on my mind. Behind the picture of him clutching his upper thigh is an advertising board with the words 'Pro Evolution Soccer 5'. Pro Evo 5! Woohoo! I'll be camping outside the shops for that one.

Well, that is rubbish actually. I'll probably just get someone from Indo to bring over a pirated copy for 15p.

06 November 2005

Man Utd 1 - 0 Chelsea: United are back!

Lordy it was brilliant. It's going to take about four years for my fingernails to grow back after those last twenty minutes. Ironically those last minutes did themselves feel like four years as I sat on the edge of the sofa, eyes hidden behind my fingers, muttering "BLOW THE WHISTLE REF! END IT! END IT!" It was so refreshing to see the old United fight and determination in the team. They've looked so tepid and indifferent of late.

I had a desire to say something about how we should be having a
national holiday after this but thought against it after Mourinho gave quite a sporting post-match interview. Let's be honest, Chelsea are probably man-for-man the better side...but we gave them one heck of a kicking this afternoon.

Remember remember the 5th of November

It's been 400 years since Guy Fawkes tried to blow up parliament. Every 5th November the Yeoman go down to the cellar and check no one's rigged it up with some TNT but they know they won't find anything. It's just for tradition. The English love it.

Hence the throngs that descended on Lewes, East Sussex for their annual bonfire jolly on 5th November. The town has 10,000 inhabitants but last night the estimates were that there were 60,000 people there (myself, Aunt and Uncle included) to see people dress up in funny costumes, risk a blazing inferno by carrying their flaming torch in one hand, sleeping baby girl in the other and throw dolls of Guy Fawkes and others in to a fire. If this was any other country than England, people would be arrested for some of the stuff they were burning.

In effect, it was political correctness that they were throwing to burn brightly in the fire just for the one night and told their kids they could do the same (Father Christmas wouldn't mind their naughtiness on this occassion and they'll still get there presents next month). No one minced their words in their revelry and I won't here for much longer because I got some pics:

There were so many people on the street. You could hardly move. Crowd surfing would have been one way to get through but, as you might be able to see, that was ruled out by the amount of people carrying flaming torches in their hands.

Paintings of the Queen, a Union Jack, the national anthem, fire and a whole lot of drunk people.

I don't know if this guy was in costume or people along the way really didn't like him. Maybe it is flame resistant toilet tissue.

That's more like it.

Nelson made an apearance from the dead. Check out the people on the walls and in the windows. The best part of the night was to see so many happy people.

This guy is cribbing my style.

Imagine singing songs and roasting your marshmellows around this campfire.

This is what £10,000 looks like when it's in the middle of going up in smoke.

Thank you to Uncle Sharif and Bude Ti for a fun evening.

04 November 2005

Idul Fitri in pics

Since I've lived in England I've got used to not making Idul Fitri a big deal. Indeed, today I went to school as normal and to make it in to school in good time I had to see this in the morning:

So much for a holiday.

The evening was better. Met up for dinner with all the family. Has brought Kim. It was a good time.

I hadn't ever used the timer before and it took me a bit of time to sort it out. I thought I'd done it but then we sat in front of the camera smiling until our faces became tired and I realised it wasn't going to go off. As Afandy pointed out, if the wind had changed we would have been stuck with those faces for eternity. After about 4 tries, we got it. The smiles do not tell the story of the effort.

Anyway, it's a better effort than last year when Has wasn't there and Afandy tried to digi-doctor him in to the picture:

Next year will hopefully be third time lucky.

03 November 2005

Happy Idul Fitri

Yesterday was the last day of fasting and today was Idul Fitri.

It has been a testing thirty days for many reasons but in the test lies the blessing. I have learnt so much about myself since Ramadan began. I have witnessed my many faults and I feel lucky that I have been shown them so I that I can make an effort to change.

I never thought I'd do this but I'm actually going to have to quote Kanye West: "We at war with society, racism, terrorism but most of all we at war with ourselves." We can't hope to make the world a better place without making our own inner-selves better first. It starts from inside out. This is the thing I have learnt most from the last month and I hope I can now put it in to practice.

As is the custom, and as is my feeling, I would like to ask for your forgiveness for anything I may have done to hurt or offend you in the past be it on this blog or other times.

May God bless us all.