Mar 9, 2007

American Idol - top 12

Here are the top 12 contestants who made it to the next round. It's a surprise because Haley and Sanjaya are still in the competition. It's sad because Sabrina Sloan who's a much better singer has been voted out.

The guest star for next week show is Diana Ross. Personally I would prefer to see some recent singers on the show.

parents and teachers - partners or rivals?

I've created a poll which I placed on the sidebar. Recently I've been working on a research project about teachers-parents partnerships. Well, the poll is definitely not going to be used in my research but I would like to know your opinion whether you are a student, parent, grandparent or single working adult.

Parents often feel that what they want for their child is somehow in conflict with what the principal / headmaster / teachers wants for the school as a whole.

Teachers on the other hand feel that parents are too demanding and do not understand their job. Meanwhile, principal or headmaster wants parents to stay behind the school gates during school hours by giving security reason. Schools often confining parents' role to money raising and denying them from any constructive part in the education of their child.

I believe there's a need to improve the relationships between these parties. Yes, there are Parents Teachers Associations (PTAs) in every school but these PTAs can be a gimmick. Most PTAs do not gain full support from parents. Attendance rates are low. Many parents do not see the needs to attend. Teachers are also reluctant to join unless they were dragged by their principal or headmaster.

The lack of communication between parents and teachers can also be reflected in students report card. Even if there's an open day for parents to meet their child's form teacher to collect report card, how often is the communication is a two way traffic? How many teachers ask parents for information? And how many parents actually share information with their child's teacher?

This can be a long discussion. So, I'll just have to stop now and continue in the next post.

Mar 8, 2007

American Idol - girls' night

The girls are definitely better than the guys. Here's my opinion about the show tonight.

Jordin Sparks
She's sweet and young but vocally she's way behind the other girls in the show. And I'm not really interested about her song choice or performance. I don't care if she leaves the show tomorrow. (6/10)

Sabrina Sloan
I think she's kinda hot and talented too. But sometimes I don' really feel her presence because she's being overshadowed by really charismatic contestants in this show. (7/10)

Antonella Barba
The media definitely help her a lot to get this far on the show. Her name is #1 top searches in Technorati. And with her smart song choice tonight (Corrine Bailey Rae's Put Your Records On), I think she's probably going to stay. Although she's not a great singer, I think her popularity is going to put her through another week. (5.5/10)

Haley S.
Haley who? I have to agree with Simon that nobody remember her name. I thought she already out last week. Probably I mistaken her for Alaina. I don't care what she sings. Vote her off the show tomorrow. (5/10)

Stephanie Edwards
She's really beautiful and elegant. And she can sing! I think she's able to go very far, probably top 3 in this show. If she wins, her records going to sell because she's very 'current'. I can imagine her being a big R&B star. (7.5/10)

Lakisha Jones
She's a power house but she kinda keep it low tonight. Anyway, I don't think I need to elaborate further because she's the best singer in this show. (8/10)

Gina Glocksen
Finally I see the real Gina Glocksen. I always thought she's a rocker at heart since her audition last year. And I'm glad she finally come out and sing an Evanescence's song. She can't match Amy Lee's singing but what the heck. This is the first time she belted out a rock song. Hope to see her perform that kinda genre in future show. (7/10)

Melinda Doolittle
And I thought she's a timid girl. But when she's on stage, gosh, she's a totally different person. She's 'fierce'. (8/10)

In my humble opinion, the girls are more talented and fun to watch. The guys are dull.

Mar 7, 2007

American Idol 6 - tonight's performance

I love this season's American Idol. This is the best season since season 3 (when Fantasia emerged the winner). And I'm rooting for the girls to win this year. Personally I want Lakisha to win. If the guys should ever win though, it has to be Blake 'Beatbox' Lewis.

I have never done review about this show before. So here's my opinion:

Blake Lewis
He is definitely the most popular guy in this competition. And now the group 311 is going to love him for promoting their song, All Mixed Up, on American Idol. It's great to hear some fresh songs from this guy. We had enough of Marvin Gaye or Stevie Wonder songs on the show already. With Blake incorporating beatbox in his songs every week now (except the first week), it's just fun to watch him. (7/10)

Sanjaya Malakar
Oh, please! How could he spoiled my favourite John Mayer's song (Waiting for the World to Change)? I know he has a huge fan base and I won't be surprised if he's going to stay for another week. He's a nice boy but all the fanjayas need to accept that he's not very good on stage after all. (4/10)

Sundance Head
This guy did a good job last week but this week, he sucked. He's going home. Next. (4/10)

Chris R.
This guy is actually quite good but he's too 'Justin Timberlake'. The way he moves and sing resemble JT which is something I do not like. (7/10)

Jared Cotter
He is the sexiest guy on the show! I don't care if he's not the best singer. Hope he will stay on for a week or two. (6/10)

Brandon Rogers
His singing was good tonight. However I thought he was forgettable. I don't really have much things to say about him. (6.5/10)

Chris S.
I thought his audition was good. But when it comes to performance on stage, he doesn't stand out like his hairdo. And with his singing and song choice tonight, he's going home. (6/10)

Phil Stacey
If Chris S doesn't go home, Phil is. His performance tonight was so bad I couldn't believe it. It was a disaster with the song 'How Do I Live'. However he deserves another chance as he was pretty good in the previous weeks. (5/10)

Overall, the guys performance were pretty bad. Can't wait to hear the girls sing tomorrow.

applying for The Amazing Race Asia 2 like everyone else

I'm supposed to blog about the Amazing Race Asia 2 yesterday, which is open for application now. I read in Che-Cheh and Chingling blogs first.

Of course my buddy and I don't want to miss out this opportunity to apply. Syong and I did not apply for the first season because we thought we were not ready. Besides she never watch a single episode back then.

Now, this year we are determine to send in our application. Syong is ready ever since I persuaded her to join me at the AXN Amazing Mall Challenge last year. Yesterday, we talked about it for awhile and decided to start shooting the Amazing Race 2 audition tape this weekend.

Why we want to join? It's not about the money. It's not about fame. It's not that we want to prove to the world that Malaysians are the best for the second time. It is also not because we are a huge fan of the Amazing Race. Although all the above are actually true but frankly speaking we just want to be able to travel and participating in as much activities as we can for free :p

Syong and I have been participating treasure hunts recently to improve our driving and navigating skills as well as to sharpen our mind to be able to think out of the box. We have done quite a lot of travelling to new places without a map in Malaysia but we have not travel to overseas together in our lives.

We are not physically strong and we do not have model faces. But we don't mind to be as cunning as Andy & Laura. Or perhaps as smart and strategic-thinking as Mardy & Marsio. We are not afraid of anything except not being selected for the audition.

freelance writing job - Science and Maths workbooks

Anyone interested to start a freelance job in writing Science and Maths workbooks? If you are:

  • looking for a writing job, working comfortably from your home and with attractive pay,
  • an organized person who is able to meet reasonable deadline,
  • in the educational industry (teacher, tutor, editor, writer, etc),
  • well versed with the National syllabus particularly the Science and Maths subjects,
  • able to present your manuscript neatly using the Microsoft Word;
  • creative and original,
  • doesn't mind working closely with the editors and accept their criticism,

then probably you should give it a shot. It is okay if you have not published any books before as training will be provided by the editors at Cerdik Publications. For your information, Cerdik is one of the strong players in the competitive educational publishing business. They are the sole publisher who has the rights and permission to publish past years examination papers.

For more information, you can send an email to me at or call +603 5637 9046 or +603 5637 9044 and look for Lai Yeen (Science and Maths editor @ Cerdik Publications).

Mar 6, 2007

Linda Onn was taken off the air

Poor Linda Onn. The Malay Mail reported that she was taken off from her radio show on ERA FM 20 minutes after the show.

She was supposed to go on air at her usual 4 p.m. - 8 p.m. slot but listeners were surprised by the sudden replacement by Nana. Hence, this sparked the rumours that she had been suspended by her bosses.

According to the interview with the Malay Mail, Linda said that she was taken off the show because her bosses were "extra concerned" and felt she might be tired and needed a rest.

In another article on the same page, Star TV associate vice-president distribution and marketing SEA, Nini Yusof said that Linda's non-appearance is not their focus anymore. However she continued by saying that "Star Movies sent two Asian hosts to the Academy Awards Red Carpet to report for us and not to walk the red carpet".

Hope Linda will bersabar and wait for this issue to calm down.

finally convert to Firefox

Finally I've decided to change my browser from Internet Explorer (IE) to Firefox. Usually I'm a loyal user and reluctant to change a tool or something that I've been using all this while. But somehow I decided to download Firefox and give it a try. And it was a good choice.

I'm not a tech geek so I wouldn't be able to talk about the technical stuff about Firefox. And I haven't really explore the available features in Firefox.

However I must say that I love the (obviously different from IE) tab feature. It means I can open new tabs within a window instead of opening new windows. The Google toolbar is user-friendly. I can do spelling check, check the Page Rank (PR) of blogs and websites, subscribe to news and blogs, etc.

The speed is okay. I don't really feel if there's any difference from IE. The tool options are not bad because I think I have better control of the setting to my browser.

Now that I've been using Firefox for a week, I don't think I need IE anymore.

scoring more than 19 1As in SPM is still possible

I did not know about a record-breaking SPM results until I read Malaysia Students's blog. Nadiah Amirah scored 19 1As in SPM 2006, breaking Nur Amalina Che Bakri's record of 17 1As in SPM 2004 . The SPM results will be announced nationwide on Mac 12, 2007.

According to Utusan Malaysia Online, Nadiah sat for the following papers: Bahasa Melayu, Bahasa Inggeris, Matematik Moden, Matematik Tambahan, Fizik, Kimia, Biologi, Sejarah, Pendidikan Islam, Sains dan Teknologi (EST) in English Language, Prinsip Akaun, Perdagangan, Ekonomi Asas, Tasaur Islam, Pendidikan Al-Quran dan Sunah, Pendidikan Syariah Islamiah, Sains Teras, Geografi and Sastera.

Impressive, right? Yes, but is this a healthy trend for the government or perhaps the school to turn SPM into some sort of a platform for record-breaking?

Dear future SPM students, you think you can do better than 19 1As? Don't worry because it is still possible to score 20 1As or 21 1As or more. There are still subjects such as Bahasa Arab, Bahasa Cina, English Literature, etc which have not been tackled by Nadiah.

The question is should we encourage SPM students to break Nadiah's record in the near future? How will this impact Malaysian students as a whole?

Mar 5, 2007

SPM students: watch out for JPA and MARA sponsorship program

Calling out all students waiting for their SPM results. You know your results will be out on Mac 12, 2007.

If you check the papers today, JPA/ PSD and MARA announced that scholarships will be offered to outstanding students who wants to pursue overseas program,
Program Ijazah Luar Negara (PILN). The online application via or will be available on Mac 12, 2007, the same day as the SPM results.

Please note that the deadline for the PILN application will end on March 22, 2007. Shortlisted candidates who made it to the interview stage will be announced on March 30, 2007.

For any enquiry on the JPA sponsorship program, call 03-88853397 from 8.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. or email to them at

For any enquiry on the MARA sponsorship program, call Bahagian Penganjuran Pelajaran MARA at 03-26915111 (ext 1103, 1107, 1120, 1134, 1155, 3619, 3620, 3631 from 8.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. or email to them at

Finally on any technical issues regarding the online registration procedure, you can call 03-88853559, 03-88853550 or 03-8885 3533. These lines will be opened from 8.00 a.m. to 10.00 p.m. starting March 12, 2007.

Do mark your calendar for the above dates. All the best.

Monday is reality tv day

Majority people of the world hate Monday. They called it all sorts of names: 'Monday blue', 'manic Monday', etc. But I love Monday because it's reality tv day.

I haven't blog about The Amazing Race: All-Stars (TAR) and America's Next Top Model (ANTM) Cycle 7 in any of my post yet. Man, I'm glad the shows are back on Monday. I like the fact that the shows are shown back to back on Channel V (ANTM 8 p.m.) and AXN (TAR 9.p.m.) so I don't need to get out of my seat.

The Amazing Race: All-Star
Hey, I thought Rob & Amber are supposed to be the bad guys. Perhaps they have mellowed down a bit after getting married, eh? After two legs, I'm pretty confident that Rob & Amber team is going to win this thing. It seems that Rob is pretty determined not to end up in second place again.

Since Rob & Amber are no longer the bad guys, the beauty queens, Dustin & Kandice are taking over the roles to be the #1 bad girls on this show. I wonder how America chose their beauty queens. Perhaps we should ask Jennifer Hudson because she knows why the Americans always make the wrong choices.

By the way, someone please tell David & Mary to be realistic a bit because nobody is going to help you all the way in a race that worth a million bucks. In a tight race to the pit stop last week (week 2), Charla & Mirna did the right thing, that is to overtake everyone else and race as quickly as possible to the pit stop. Who wants to be eliminated? David & Mary, the Cho brothers were just helping you guys in the previous season for their own benefits.

America's Next Top Model Cycle 7
How come Tyra Banks become so 'aunty' already? People said that she's getting fat and I guess it is quite true. But she's still beautiful and 'fierce'.

Some of the girls in this cycle are pretty anorexic-looking especially the twins, Amanda and Michelle. They are not really good role models for young girls. Besides, unlike previous cycles, there are no plus-sized model this year.

So far I haven't seen any ridiculous challenges yet. I must say that the scariest and most ridiculous task of all seasons, the previous cycle where the models were asked to walk on high platforms was the scariest moment. Danielle, who eventually won, actually twisted her foot during the task. It sounds easy but you should watch that episode (if you haven't) to understand what I am talking about.

They did mention that Megan resembles Kim from Cycle 5, right? They share something in common. You probably already know about Kim but yes, Megan is gay too. So does Michelle, the twin sister with better potential.

That's about it now. Until further review of the shows.

Mar 4, 2007

Federer wins at Dubai Open

We don't get to watch the Dubai Open on Astro sports channel, not even the final men's championship where Federer face off Mikhail Youzhny today.

However the result is out. Top seed Federer easily defeated Youzhny in 2 sets, 6-4 6-3. According to the official site of the Dubai Open, although Youzhny competed well, making Federer work hard to close out the match, he failed to bother the world number one after losing an early lead.

Federer is unstoppable this year. Nadal is not on top form to give Federer a good competition. Although the number one player was defeated by Andy Roddick in January, we knew it doesn't matter because he managed to defeat Roddick in their following match at the Australian Open recently.

Seriously I do not want to watch tennis when only one player dominating the game. It's feels like watching Michael Schumacher winning every F-1 Grand Prix. Can any player step up their game and stop Federer?

Federer the unbeatable genius

I'm not really a big fan of Federer because he is too perfect. This guy is a genius. And he is better than Tiger Woods in golf. Now he is in the final against Mikhail Youzhny at the Dubai Tennis Championships tomorrow.

The fact that Nadal lost his match against Youzhny simply worries me. It seems that he is going to have trouble maintaining his game this year. We are not sure if he is going to play better on clay. Hope Nadal, the king on clay, will improve his game when he play in Monte Carlo Open.

With Federer's wins at the Pacific Line Open in Indiana Wells and the Sony Ericsson Open in Miami last year, it is only fair to believe that the world number one is going to defend his championships again after tomorrow's game. In the meanwhile I don't think Federer is not going to have any problem taking on Youzhny, the world number 18.
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