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Friday, February 04, 2011

Hoppy Chinese New Year...

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No, it’s not a typo... being that it’s the year of the Rabbit and all.

Xin Tian Di, in Shanghai - image hosting by PhotobucketOriginal image taken in the Xin Tian Di district of Shanghai, a few days ago

It’s already the second day of Chinese New Year… yeah, this comes a tad later than it should, but Walski just got back from Shanghai last night, and he’s now in Penang with the in-laws for CNY. Plus, he took his time to get some added shut-eye before embarking on this post.

More about the Shanghai trip in another post, by the way.

Walski’s not in to feng shui as such, so he doesn’t know how the coming Chinese new year will pan out. But hopefully, our good fortune, wealth and health will multiply.

Like rabbits…
(the year of the Metal Rabbit, and more, in the full post)

Truth be told, Walski’s not entirely sure where the cliché “multiply like rabbits” comes from, because as far as he knows, rabbits suck at math.

But kidding aside, not only is this the year of the rabbit, but more specifically, it’s the year of the Metal Rabbit. The last time the Metal Rabbit came a visiting was in 1951, which is ironically the year Rob Halford (lead singer for Judas Priest) was born. Making him, of course, a metal rabbit in more ways than one.

Incidentally, Judas Priest will kick off their farewell Epitaph World Tour this year. So far only the only dates announced are for Europe. Walski’s guess, though, is that if they do add any Asian dates, once again Malaysia will probably be given a pass-over. Not surprising, since Malaysia is not exactly the most metal-friendly nation in the region.

Poster for Melvins, taken from Inside The Rock Poster Frame, image hostiing by Photobucket And being that we’re not exactly metal-friendly, what good tidings will the year of the Metal Rabbit bring?

Certainly not Judas Priest. Or at least, that’s Walski’s guess. One thing we can look forward to (NOT) is the introduction of restrictions to our so far restriction-free Internet (via The Malaysian Insider). Yes, the Malaysian government has had enough of us citizens shooting our mouth off, and they figured it’s time they started exerting control over what we say. And by extension, think as well.

At this juncture, not much is known about the proposed guidelines, except that

  1. Rais "#yorais" Yatim has a hand in it, in some shape or form
  2. The guidelines were prepared by the Attorney-General’s Chambers, and endorsed by the Cabinet’s Special Committee to Strengthen the Government’s Communications Strategy
  3. The guidelines covers how existing laws are to be applied to the Internet

Hmmm... Special Committee to Strengthen the Government’s Communications Strategy. Don't know about you, but doesn’t that have a somewhat communist ring to it? Odd for a country so McCarthyist on the surface.

Walski also reckons that one of these strengthening strategies is to spam all Malaysians with a Chinese New Year message, purportedly from PM Najib Razak (via The Malaysian Digest). Walski happened to get his spam delivered via SMS, courtesy of Celcom. Not once, but TWICE. Which is a nice touch, unless you happen to be in China, or someplace else on planet Earth that entails mobile roaming charges. So therefore, Walski in effect will have had to PAY for the two SMS’s, which he didn’t really want in the first place.

But to be fair, that accidental ang pow to the telcos happened in the old year. And we’re now in the year of the Metal Rabbit, so Walski is optimistic that his luck with unwanted SMS’s will change.

Rabbits, however, as cute as they may be, can be cunning. And in certain strange circumstances, vicious as well.

So what will the Metal Rabbit be like, and what else does the year have in store for us? Again, he’s no prognosticator, and certainly not an aficionado of feng shui. In short, Walski doesn’t know. What he does know is that he does not have a Holy Handgrenade of Antioch handy.

But he does hope that it will be a good year, both personally and for the nation in general. He hopes that there will be less politicking and more action on things that are important. Though that said, Walski’s not really going to hold his breath. Suffice it to say that he will remain optimistic, despite the odds that the politicos will likely continue with what they have been doing non-stop, 24/7 since March 2008.

Some think that the year of the Metal Rabbit will see a snap general election, in a move to consolidate Najib’s mandate to ruin run the nation. Whether or not that actually happens (the snap elections, that is) is something we’ll just have to wait out and see.

In the meantime, enjoy your well-deserved time off work, with family and friends. Regardless of whether or not you actually celebrate the lunar New Year, Walski is sure that you will have a nice time if you want to.

And if you happen to be on the road, please do be careful. The last thing you’d want to do is end up being an Ops Sikap statistic.

So, Gong Xi Fa Cai, Xin Nien Kwai Ler… and may the year of the Metal Rabbit bring us health, wealth, and a fair dose of political entertainment for all to enjoy.