Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Daphne Show Episode 4 : Do we need ANOTHER Highway in Klang Valley?

There is strong objection from some very, angry PJ residents, towards two proposed highways; the Damansara Shah Alam Highway (DASH) and the Kinrara-Damansara Expressway (KIDEX).

From our discussions with them, I could see there was a deeper frustration to it all.

Find out more on this episode.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Daphne - Episode 3 - Are we a nation obsessed with our cars?

Episode 3 continues with me speaking to the folks from PEMANDU (sorry if there's that humming sound behind.... the cleaners decide to clean the floors outside with their water vacuum)

In this episode, Mohamad Azharuddin from PEMANDU, acknowledges the weakness in our Urban Public Transport and shares with me briefly, the GTP plans on moving forward. 

Women activist, Ivy Josiah tells us why her patience is running thin while Queen of Traffic, Producer and radio announcer, Priscilla Patrick explains how highways have helped ease traffic.

We also get insights from the Public Transportation User Asso. rep, Ajit Johl.

Parents should encourage children to be what they want to be

Different Spin 31st October 2014 - unedited version

I watch my daughters play “doctor and nurse” while their bapak pretends to be their ‘patient’.

“See, if you drill it often enough, you plant seeds into their head that eventually manifests into reality,” says my husband proudly.

He has been telling our daughters that they can be “whatever they want”, provided they obtain a degree in medicine first. I stop myself from rolling my eyes at his statement and raise an eyebrow instead.

“Geez, you really are starting to sound like your father in-law!”

I remember those days when you had to fill out your ambition in the ‘cita-cita’ column and were only were given three choices.

“Daphne, are you sure you want to be just this when you complete your studies?”

I used to get so annoyed when my teacher questioned my preferences.

“What is wrong with wanting to be a librarian, a race driver and an embalmer? I love books, I love speed and the dead fascinate me!” I tell her as politely as I could.

She suggests I be more like my peers.

Yup! Doctor. Engineer. Lawyer
(How many of you guessed these three correct?)


I was reading a statement by the Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister, Datuk Masidi Manjun recently. He said that Sabahan youths are at risks of becoming slaves to migrants in their own land if there is a continual dependency on foreign labor.

According to the report, there are about 400,000 foreign workers in the state, mainly from Indonesia and the Philippines, but at the same time, there are many local youths who are jobless.

He adds that in the old days, the Dusuns used to take pride in toiling their land, but nowadays, almost all are being toiled by the Timorese and cites the vegetable farms in Kundasang, as an example.

“Our country is an inviting destination for foreign workforce because of the opportunities left vacant by our own people who tend to be very choosy when it comes to seeking jobs.

We cannot blame the foreign workers who will become more financially capable through their diligence and one day manages to open their own businesses. Don’t be surprised if one day, we become kuli  in our land,” he said.

I agree with him.

Our Malaysian service industry seems to be flooded by non-Malaysians.

I’ve not had my mee mamak fried by a fellow Indian Muslim chap in a long while. The waiters, my dry-cleaners and the friendly cashier who tends to my groceries each week, are all foreign workers.
My husband got annoyed once, by the security guard who gave confusing directions to the autopay machine;

Aiyo … don’t they speak proper English or Bahasa Malaysia?”

“I think he’s from Nepal love,” I explain kindly.

A new trend is emerging.

Step aside Indonesian and Pilipino recruits… Hello newbies!

There seems to be more Nepalese, Cambodians and Laotians coming into our country looking for odd job work - from rubbish collection and farming, to cleaning services and construction work. There seems to be a huge demand for these jobs, and I can understand completely.

Malaysians don’t want to do what they do simply because it is a job. Not a career.

You don’t have many parents encouraging their children to be refuse collectors or someone who lays bricks for a living.

You can OWN the business but you won’t be doing the actual labor.

In fact, most parents (and some educators out there) deem these jobs as menial and quite often with a negative tone to it.

“You better study hard, or you will end up as rubbish collector!”


I will be honest. Being a parent who works extremely hard to make sure her children receives the best education one can afford, naturally, I too would hope for them to choose a profession that would offer them a good remuneration package.

Unlike my husband, I truly would be happy for any vocation my child chooses in the future. But being a mother, I know that laborers work long, hard hours for a small wage. My maternal, protective instinct is just concerned.

But perhaps I shouldn’t be too worried about their career path?

Apparently Generation Y is like Generation X on steroids.

My sister who works in the Human Resource department of a bank finds it tough to find suitable candidates when hiring. Graduates who express interest in banking tend to zoom in to only the widely publicized roles in investment and corporate banking and are less open to other parts of banking.
Gen Y-ers are surrounded by more choices and therefore don’t tend to stay in one job for very long. 

They have a “what’s in it for me” attitude and focus more on entitlements, rewards, promotions and development.

Which brings me back to Datuk Masidi’s concerns on the plight of our jobless local youths. There is not one definite answer to solving this problem el pronto, but I think we can start by changing our perception and mindset towards the jobs that really need more locals getting interested in. When we stop thinking these jobs are ‘low class’ , the remuneration and respect, gains. If the Mat Sallehs in places like Denmark and Sweden can get it right, I see no reasons why we can’t.

Change must start from home.

If your child wants to be something else other than the ‘norm’, let him or her be.

Daphne’s daughters Isobel and Iman would like to be a fashion designer and aerobic instructor respectively. Her husband is okay with this, provided they have a medical degree specializing in gynaecology and pediatrics. Daphne finds it hard to teach an old dog new tricks, so she encourages her girls to just follow their dreams.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Blessed Deepavali

This morning, I felt a bit sad and admittedly annoyed because I felt I had no more freedom to do the things I love -- simple things like yoga, my NGO work and meeting up with friends because he says "I just prefer you to be at home".

Before I allowed myself to get more angry and more sad, I held my tongue and kept calm. And obeyed.

Why did I do this?

Because I didn't want to rock the boat nor make him angry.

That's what you do when you want to make things work.

I said a little prayer and read an article that made me see things from a different perspective. I may not wholeheartedly believe in it, but it did make me calmer and kinder. It's all about healing and why the person is the way he or she is due to what may or may have not happened to them in the past.

I cannot speak about his background nor upbringing, because I've only chanced the in-laws once in my life. But I can speak about my own experience.... and it was not easy living with a very stern father who didn't give me permission to do a lot of things I wanted to do back then. From singing to hanging out with my friends after school.

"Your studies are more important".

I am grateful for the restrictions for I would not be where I am today. But I admit. My father and I didn't see eye-to-eye for a very long time. And I vowed when I earned my own keep, that I would do the things I felt I should do so that I would be happy.

And I did do all that.

Years passed by and this horse was a happy horse. And then she met a bull and they became friends.

When I am asked to do what I am told, without a reason that is logical to my head, I naturally get agitated and flighty.

It used to kill me inside and made me so unhappy. But I had to make a decision and because I have committed myself to this for as long as God grants it ... I have to find ways to make it work. And softer for my head and heart to comprehend.

I guess I need healing the fear and anger is felt again when I am stopped from doing things that make me smile. It brings me back to those days that I was so hateful and vengeful to my own my father.

I will just have to focus on whatever good is left and be grateful for that. My work. My children. My family. And a very loving husband.

May the light of goodness and kindness be shared upon us all.

Saw this Petronas ad and it made me reflect on the past, but to live what is today.

Happy Deepavali friends and family celebrating.


Monday, October 20, 2014

Daphne - Traffic - Episode 2 - A Day Out on Public Transportation

On the second episode of DAPHNE, TV Journalist and Producer, Daphne Iking, slaps on loads of sunblock and wears her (blingified) comfy walking shoes, to make her way to the city ... without her car!

Friends, Mark Ian Timms and Elaine Yap, accompany her on her mission to deflower her 'Malaysian Rail' virginity.

Along the way, she finds new friends, good food and tips on getting by, using our Malaysian Urban Public Transport.

Music by her Wonderman Co-Producer, Joe Lebosi. (Cause we can't afford Pharrell ... yet!) =)

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Daphne Show Episode 1

So I finally got my act together into producing my own online show, DAPHNE. (Thanks Azmi Abdul Rahman aka Joe Lebosi for giving me the nudge!)

Decided to tackle traffic problems first, since it is such a bitch right now around my neighbourhood.

I'm in the midst of doing episode 2, 3 and 4 now. . . and boy oh boy!

From an innocent "what the hell is wrong with our traffic lah wei!" question ...has now evolved to something crazier...

Find out more...on DAPHNE.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Pertiwi Soup Kitchen

Thank you for interviewing Aunty Munirah so the authorities are more educated on what the Pertiwi Soup Kitchen volunteers do.