Here In My Home - Malaysian Artistes For Unity

Friday, 9 November 2007

G’Me A Cuppa

Of course I know the correct term is mea culpa, but like it says give me a cuppa, I wanna take a break. I have been asked by friends why I mostly reminisce about foods in the blog. Do I intend to be a food blogger, or flogger, the moniker that is quite distasteful to me by its connotation. This may be due to the fact that they may not realise the true meaning of flogger, because if they did I am sure they do not want to be associated with such a vocation. And this is basically why I evoke about the past, as many a proverb in many cultures has exhorted that in order to go forward, you must not forget the past. To burn your bridges does not mean you cannot go back. It just means that you need to find another way while moving forward in order to return home, as that is still your primary objective.

Yes home, your place of sanctuary. Its form may change through time but home will remain a safe haven, as a calm port is for a sailor. Thus in the rush to advance to whatever marvels that awaits us in the future, I would like to be an instrument to remind all of us what it is all about, which is to make our nation a safe home for everyone. Certainly there are pitfalls in our path, pass, present and future, and we overcome it come what may but we should not lose sight of our objective. Do not fail to remember our colourful past, even something as trivial as Rose Chan that the young may go huh at, as such things are what made us what we are today. Hence let us not forget what things to cherish, lest they be pushed aside for fleeting baubles of faux joy, believing such will gladden our souls but actually leaving us a hollow nation and not a hallowed nation.

Yet in my recollections food remains the easiest to write about, as the saying goes a full belly is a sated soul. This is especially so since our society seem to rush headlong into ‘homogeny meals’ in the name of economics and convenience, as even lunch boxes has seeped into our golden service airline, no longer tolerating diversity and nuances in preparations. What a joke! And for those who chose to head into the other extreme, chasing the latest nouvelle fad of this chef and that in a sort of glorified bento existence since it is just that, a gourmetised lunch box, do they do not realise that these novelties are actually dishes that has stood the test of time after being tweaked here and there by the chefs. A food reviewer I claim not to be, as I have no tyre manufacturer stars, chopsticks or any such marques to give to any food establishments. I will only mention those institutions that remain true to their art, fighting to maintain our food heritage as culinary repositories so that such gastronomic legacies is not swallowed by the rivers of time.

Still I may write about other things that are part of our inheritance, such as the lost games of our nation’s childhood like konda-kondi, galah panjang, teng teng and others that may sound odd to kids of this generation. However I feel that my words would fail to elicit any curiosity in the young to ponder on these heirlooms, so it would be best to leave such recollections for those well versed in the visual arts or better wordsmiths than I to not only preserve the memory of such diversions but to revive so that children laughter while playing the games shall ring out again. But even then I have my doubts. Remember the nostalgic Merdeka advertisement of children playing a game of combat in the bushes of their village? In this age of virtual electronic role-playing, I have not seen kids replay such games and if a national campaign like that cannot bring out any response, how will others fare. Nonetheless for those things that does not require such visual aids and I feel I should reflect upon, I will surely comment even though it may be political, even if I am surely no political commentator. Notwithstanding the fact that bloggers seem to be a reviled species to the establishment nowadays; I am still proud to be associated as one cause I believe responsible bloggers are still doing a service to society. And if I can help maintain our food heritage amongst others by doing so, I say why not?

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