Sunday, March 8, 2009


Last night over you-know-what amongst some former students in The Oval, one asked me "How come you did not get arrested?" Of course he was referring to the march to hand over the memorandum to the Agong about reverting the teaching of Maths and Science back to the National Language.

My answer was BRASH; however all five of us knocked our glasses and bottoms-up that heavenly malt at my retort: "I don't eat shit and die, just because PR says so." I took the opportunity to tell my blokes that although some have classified me as a socio-political blogger, I really am NOT. I don't blame people of course if they have stigmatised me as such, just because of the hyphenated word. I blog more on social issues, civil society issues, and missteps by by politicians from both sides of the deepening divide. I never claimed infallibility, I just ask for understanding, guidance, to be heard, and hunger for non-partisan feedback.....quality feedback that gives solutions rather than abominations.

So what about this MILLSTONE bit. Long before the blender came into our kitchen, we had that slab of granite, and the granite roller pin. We "geling rumpah" with that. As punishment I was often told my Mum to geling rumpah. I did not mind it because we were going to have curry that day. But it became punishment when Sonny, Boy, Kechik and Rat is hollering outside to come out to play. It is during these times that I added more zapp to the rumpah.....crook your first finger across your forehead and fling your sweat onto the rumpah! But Rat and Kechik's mother had a millstone. Why do you think I love tosai. That was simpler than ours at home when you need to use both hands, forward and, my parents would be cited for child abuse for making me geling rumpah.

So you see, there is a lot of science and what-have-you in the millstone. It is damn heavy, you bet.

Idiomatically we have heard this: A Millstone around one's neck is also a phrase used constituting a metaphor meaning a burden or large inconvenience one has to endure.

Historically: Neolithic man used millstone functionality to process grains, nuts and other vegetable food products for consumption. These implements are often called grinding stones. They used either saddlestones and rotary querns turned by hand. Such devices were also used to grind pigments and metal ores prior to smelting.

I did not participate in the march because I did not subscribe to it. I hold strongly to the National Language as a bonding must.....but when it is used for other nefarious purposes, like politicising it, you do not have my support.

The Holy Scriptures said it would be better to have a millstone tied around our necks and cast into the depths of the sea than to cause one of these little ones to stumble. Why do we want to put our kids through all these, because some politicians are feverishly stirring the pot to unearth some frothy issues. Haven't we have enough issues than we can handle?

This issue is about children's future and wellness and not political tactics or scoring partisan points.

We have a moral responsibility to care for our children. Who would dissemble or play politics with our children's futures?

Everyone who has anything to do with or cares about children in our country knows that this is the way to go, have Maths and Science continue as the medium of instruction, until our politicians can coin a more creative media.


wandererAUS said...

Zor, you are 30 years to late to project your noble intentions. Since the nationalists tainted the education system, the whole system is screwed...full of leakages! What you see now, is arguing which sticking glue works best.
"I hold strongly to the National Language as a bonding must...." I subscribe to this line of thinking, other than that, what other purpose it is a useful, especially one leaves the shore of Malaysia?
"Man does not live on bread alone"

desiderata said...

i respect that SIR.
i'd NOT participate in any RACIALLY divisive marches like this one, BUT I DID IN NOVEMBER (10th?) 2007 UNDER BERSIH BECAUSE that was surely above race, class and creed, my abiding motto as a Blogger. YL, Desi,knottyaSsusual
PS: But zorro, so-po lable okay-lah, niCe fit wit'BUMmer, no?

Anonymous said...

Dear Zorro,
Please let me correct you concernng the term "guring rumpah" as it should have been GILING REMPAH (GRINDING THE SPICES)




donplaypuks® said...

In his infinite stupidity, the sleeping PM said on tv that a decision had to be made on this subject as the opposition against was gathering momentum.

Stupid, because a decision was made 7 years ago and few opposed it. So, what decision is this PAS sympathiser (his grandad was the founder of PAS)in sheep's clothing talking about?

Just because 2,000 gathered in protest (I agree they have a democratic right to do so) yesterday does not mean the majority in M'sia agree with them.

If in doubt, I suggest they conduct national polls and make it a referendun vote at the next GE. Then we'll know what the majority desire!!

Writer said...

So much verbiage about nothing! Like a typical politician. Sounds like an opportunist depending where the wind blows. No sir, you are not there amongst RPK or AI or LKS, KS, NJ, LGE, NA, or even Khairy Jamaluddin.

zorro said...

Anon1:47pm. Thanks for the correction. You know how some of us chinese screw up the "r_ and the "l".
Thanks again.

BTW Zorro'horse is Tornado. Silver is the Lone Ranger's and Kimo Sabe is what Tonto his Red Indian companion says to the Lone Ranger after instructions? I stand corrected.

zorro said... is never too late. "Too Late" is an escapist's excuse. Remember I was a teacher from the '61 to '92. I have seen the shifts. I gave 24hours notice to leave this noble profession, so that I can fight it from the fringe. I will continue and you have every right to can say I am 30 years late! So what? Give up? Bay at the Moon? No lah, not my style.

Anonymous said...

the millstone? its just a PERDANA but its like a MILLSTONE when one dies for a CAMRY.
oh, no more MILLSTONE coz she got more than she wanted. Now, she travels in style in a MERC.
welcome to the world of sellouts, BN-style.
Wanna millstone removed? Follow HEE!

zorro said...

Anon 4:32 What exactly are you ranting about. Do you understand the intent of this post. Pls keep to the subject of this definitely did not read the posting where I welcomed good feedback for solutions rather than abominations. I am annoyed, and I do not welcome your type of aimless rantings.

Daniel said...

I read a suggestion somewhere that PR should use a raintree as its official logo.

I think it's a good idea. Hope you could pass this idea on to the PR leaders if you have a chance to meet them.

Anonymous said...

Dear Zorro,
I am not a regular visitor but I do read your blog occasionally and it is interesting. I guess I am like you in the perspective of who cares which party - as long as they are doing right or if they are wrong - then we blog about it.

Anyway, for your information, I have a background in edu and it is interesting to note that a couple of years back, I met this lady on an airplane and she was flying back to KL from her TTC in another state. She said that she was fed-up with TTC as she only had lecturers who spoke and taught in BM but on English as a subject as well as Maths and Science. All the lecturers had lap-tops courtesy of the MOE (and our rakyat's taxes) and had no clue on how to teach in English. She said that they made the excuse that the trainees could not understand and therefore they had to speak in BM but when confronted by other trainees who could speak in English, the lecturers were equally unable to academically converse. Well, she said they had Phds and Masters etc. I wonder how they got their papers?

It was a dismal thing for me to hear that. Another dismal thing is that thaere are those who are equally able to teach and have a good command of English but are unable to get into the teaching profession JUST BECAUSE THERE IS A QUOTA. There are also quotas for RMC and also for TUDM for pilots etc. Well, Zorro, we need more than you and Tonto - we need the whole of Malaysia to wake up but they are under a spell - so even though I love theis nation and have contributed to it - I really detest the situation right now and feel that there is so much injustice permeating every strata of society. Give us one good reason to say we are proud to be Malaysian! I can't find any right now.

Anonymous said...


dont get too angry too fast with anon 4.32

exactly what i meant? its about politicians who dont care two hoots except for their self interests.

Why Hee? She is the epitome of such self-serving politicians who cares about materialism rather than national interest. The cars are only metaphors.

Thats what I am aiming at which is educational policies were not made for the country but political expediency. No, you cant take out politics completely from this touchy language issue and this is the primary reason for the sorry state of affairs in our educational system. And Minister after Minister responsible for the educational affairs have committed the same crime of putting their self interest above national interest. Aint this any different from Hee?

anyway, if to you I am ranting off tangent again, do pardon me. Its never my intention. have a great holiday, zorro.

once again, my apologies if I have irritated you.

Anonymous said...

since 2003, 100juta been spent on
'm/s in ingris' project BUT 10juta of 'teaching aid' = lap-top,software,
projector, printer & ...... ter-missing ,either stolen or sold .....@#$%^&* !

Anonymous said...

I am reminded in this day and age language is only a tool, as the MERCEDES BENZS is a better tool incomparison to the PROTON, please do not turn it into an Ideology.Ramlax

Anonymous said...

Will it mean that blogging needs to be changed to Bahasa Baku in time to come?

What's so wrong about going about studies in English that has been in use all these donkey years?

Some of these Nationalists don't even know how to shave or get a hair cut and want the world to change for their sake.

To hell with them.


Nostradamus said...


R.A.H.M.A.N Theory (Teori R.A.H.M.A.N)

R - Tunku Abdul Rahman
A - Tun Abdul Razak
H - Tun Hussein
M - Tun Dr. Mahathir
A - Datuk Seri Abdullah
N - Datuk Seri Najib

M.A.H.A.T.H.I.R Theory (Teori M.A.H.A.T.H.I.R)

M - Mahathir? Musa? Muhyiddin? Mohd Ali? Muhammad Muhd? Money?????????
A - Anwar? Ahmad Zahid, Abdul Rahim? Abdul Hadi Awang? Altantuya? ???????
H - Husam Musa? Hishammuddin? Hang Tuah? Hang Jebat? Hang Siapa? ?????????
A - ??????????
T - ??????????
H - ??????????
I - ??????????
R - ?????????

Why teori MAHATHIR? (Kenapa teori MAHATHIR?)


Answer coming soon! Subject to endorsement by DYMM SPBYD Agong.
(Jawapan akan menyusul! Tertakluk kepada DYMM SPBYD Agong perkenankan.)

zorro said...

Anon11:51PM....apologise for my brashness. really I am sorry.

Anonymous said...


no apologies needed from you. i know you are sincere. if only I am clearer in my thoughts and writing, then you wouldnt be so irritated.

you mean well. that to me means more than anything else.

as usual, i will be trawling your blog as my daily diet.

Chow, Best wishes and God bless you always.

zorro said...

Anon 6:14pm.
I am deeply appreciative.