29th Feb 2012 - What a day! 29th Feb comes once in 4 years and yesterday was definitely, a memorable one!
Salary came in and I have a few things to settle. So, went to the ATM to do my withdrawal. Entered amount to be withdrawn, waited, card returned, screen went back to main page but no cash received. I thought that maybe I wrongly did something or maybe I missed any notification on the screen, so I tried again. Entered amount to be withdrawn, waited, card returned, screen went back to main page and again, no cash received. I was puzzled and decided to check my bank balance, WHAT THE HELL? My balance got deducted and here I am, still cashless! So, I had no choice but to go to the bank to settle the problem. I explained the situation to the bank officer, she said this is not a common occurrence but it does occur. Yes, there was a court case reported in Sarawak on this.
Well, back to my story... The bank officer checked in the system and yes, the system says that I have made 2 withdrawals but I told her no cash came out of the ATM. She said that they will check the system etc and will call me back. Today I received a call from them saying that they are still in the process of verifying etc and that my account will only be credited after a week, if it is legit. A week??? What the hell? Don't they know that people have commitments and bills to pay? What a disappointment!
Another disappointment that is worth mentioning is about Erykah Badu's banned concert. She was supposed to perform last night, 29th Feb 2012 and due to the publication done by The Star on Mon, 27th Feb, the concert is banned by the Malaysian government. The published photo of Ms. Badu was questioned as she had the arabic word of 'Allah' tattooed on her bare skin (pix below):
Here's the news clipping taken from Telegraph UK:
Malaysia bans singer Erykah Badu for Allah tattoo
Muslim-majority Malaysia has banned a planned concert by Erykah Badu after a photograph appeared of her with the Arabic word for Allah written on her body.
The Grammy-winning R&B singer was scheduled to perform Wednesday in Kuala Lumpur, but some Muslim groups said Badu was an unsuitable role model for young Malaysians after seeing a publicity photo of her with what appeared to be temporary tattoos of the word Allah on her bare shoulders.
A government committee that includes police and Islamic policy officials decided to forbid Badu's show because the body art was "an insult to Islam and a very serious offence," Rais Yatim, the information minister, said in a statement.
The photo of Badu had "triggered public criticism that could jeopardise national security and cause a negative impact to the government's image," the statement added.
The 41-year-old, Dallas-born singer had already arrived in Malaysia. She can stay as a tourist but will not be allowed to perform, an anonymous Information Ministry official said.
Razman Razali, managing director of the show's Malaysian organiser, Pineapple Concerts, said his company hopes the ban will be reversed.
Badu is "worried and dismayed," he said. She was slated to perform in an auditorium that can hold about 3,000 spectators.
It was the first concert by a Western performer to be banned in Malaysia in recent years. Several other stars, including Gwen Stefani and Avril Lavigne, were told to dress modestly while performing.
The photograph of Badu, which also appears on her official fan website, attracted attention after Malaysia's most widely read English-language daily, The Star, published it Monday.
On Tuesday, the newspaper apologised to Muslims for what it called an "oversight," saying it deeply regretted any offence sparked by the photo, which was "inadvertently published." The Home Ministry summoned The Star's editors to explain the photograph, which caused some Muslim activists to demand the newspaper's suspension.
I saw 4 comments to this news and got curious, so here they are:
In Foxnews, there were more than a thousand comments. Very mixed reactions from so many people but mostly... *sigh* I remember in 2002, when I went to Australia for a business trip, when we told the taxi driver that we were from Malaysia, he mentioned about Anwar's sodomy case. Now, we will be known as the conservative Malaysians who banned Erykah Badu's concert.
While I do not condone to such display of temporary tattoo in a sensitive nation like Malaysia, I am amazed with the amount of negativity received by our Malaysians, up to the point of banning her concert. I thought that once a personal apology is given, we would be liberal and matured enough to forgive a foreign artist for a photo-shoot taken somewhere else, and continue with the concert and we could enjoy her music and the event organizers will not be losing their investment. It's not as if she purposely put the temporary tattoo especially for her concert here and it's not as if she's planning to perform with that 'accessory' in her concert here. It was a photo taken somewhere else and for something else! Again, very disappointing... *sigh*
What have we become? We should uphold our values but at the same time, be more tolerant and considerate of others, and be more forgiving to those who may not understand. Frankly, my fellow Malaysians, I am very disappointed and at the same time, I am scared to be living among those who are too fanatic. Here we are, a multi-cultural, multi-racial nation, living together in a community and yet, there are some of us who are so narrow-minded. IF the number is so small, I don't think that the ban would happen. IF the tolerance level is this low for a foreigner, what would the tolerance level to a fellow Malaysian then? I don't want to even think about it.
Sad but true, we are so far away from being the 1-Malaysia that we dream of or we claim to be. What a disappointing leap day *sigh*
Anyway, my mortal and model readers out there, I wish you peace and let's pray for a better and more tolerate nation.