Friday, August 28, 2009

The Country in Mid-Life Crisis

In just three days, the nation will be celebrating the 52nd Independence day from the British after they (the British) seemed to have lost interest in the Asian nations for several reasons that I can't really recall but which I could recite without any problem about 12 years ago when I used to be 'ahem' book smart ;)

In the old days, we looked at Independence day with awe, at home and at school. I remember getting up early as a child to watch the parades on TV (I should ask my mom why she made it a point to wake us up to watch it, though - on a public holiday of all things!), and I even used to be able to sing along to the particular year's chosen song. I drew the flag, even if I never got the 14 points of the star symmetrical enough and put it in front of the house because we didn't have a cloth flag back then. Independence day or Merdeka (as we call it) used to be something to really look forward to.

These days, other than it being a public holiday (long weekend this week, yay!) there's nothing much else to look forward to. There's a flag somewhere in the house, but no one is hanging it up... I have no idea which song was picked, or how it sounds (although there was an ad that asks you to select which 1Malaysia song you want, but I am not sure if the 1Malaysia song will be used for the Merdeka celebrations. I like the one that has that upbeat, rock-ish tune) or even what is the motto for this year's celebration. So, I wonder... what is it about being an adult that makes you feel that the Independence Day celebration is just a show, and not something that genuinely makes you happy?

Upon dwelling on this point on this quiet Friday afternoon, it occurred to me that just like last year, the current situation in the country (be it social or politics, increasingly insane rules, people arrested for doing certain stuff, etc) could be a contributing factor to the lackadaisical attitude of the people towards what is one of the great turning points in the history of our nation. With the blooming field of alternative media, all the rose tinted glasses we once wore seems to have been crushed under very strong heels... irreparable. There are so many other problems that have surfaced that it looks like the 52 years of attempted nation building could crumble any minute with even the slightest jolt.

The only thing that makes me smile is this ad by Petronas for Merdeka...


  1. Just like you I don't know what our theme is this year.

    And just like you I used to get up early to watch the parade on TV and would sing along even but these days I find that with current sad state of this country, we shouldn't even be having a national day!

    And you can bet your bottom dollar I'll be snoozing away till noon on Monday ... LOL!

    Happy holidays.

  2. Oh my... I wonder how many others out there feel the same way. Well, hope you have a good weekend :)

  3. i always adore yasmin and think she always try so hard to bring amalgamation to our country.

    if we depend on our politicians, i think we will get our "real" independent at end of the day.

  4. In reality , it's Petronas add's like this which potray's the real meaning of MERDEKA !

  5. One of my fav ad.I have always admire Yasmin Ahmad's guts in handling controversial issues and love the way she convey her message through media.Check out her story behind the ad

  6. Well isn't he the don Juan. Independance day here is just an excuse to have sales at the stores and get drunk. no one really recalls the history but then again it happened a long long time ago.

    It seems from the not fully educated observers eyes (that's me) that the nation is going through some rough racial and religious tensions that are causing it to become less secular. I for am a strong proponent of secular governments because religious ones just turn crazy. It seems to happen overnight. Like what on earth did the flog that young woman for drinking a beer? That's crazy.

    I hope the message of that commercial becomes reality. It's what humanity deserves.

  7. Faisal: Yeah, her work is good, indeed. Hopefully not all is in vain

    Unicorn Girl: You think so? I feel that the make you all misty eyed and stuff, but I don't know if it portrays the real meaning of merdeka. Or maybe I'm just jaded.

    Jai: I will check it out, thanks...

    Ricardo: Yes, there are issues going on.. hence why I titled the post the way I did...

  8. irreparable, yes, that is the perfect word.

    i still remember when i was without a car, i cant wait to get my own set of wheels so that i can parade the flag during merdeka day.

    hahahaha... this merdeka, i didnt even see a single car doing that (besides some random taxi).

  9. I couldn't favourite that YouTube clip fast enough.

    Happy not-a-part-of-the-British-Empire day!

  10. Zewt: Yeah, there was a time when all the cars had flags... this year was kind of pathetic.

    Orhan: LOL... yeah, that's right. I kind of wonder how it would be here if the British were still around - when I have nothing better to do.

  11. a perfect reflection of the people's sentiment. i like it!

  12. Oh, lol. I posted this on Facebook and got this comment:

    'That video of that kid was so cute it made me want to gnaw my knuckles and put my head through the monitor. Is there more of the same? Oh I do hope so'.

    Is there?


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