Controversial Day @ Bistro RIA…

It’s been a long time since I last lamented on the brickbats I get on air. The atmosphere today during Bistro RIA (10am – 2pm) was one full of emotions and anger by the listeners, quite different than most days. And when you have yours truly being the instigator of a thousand different views and perspectives to kick things off, you know tensions are gonna run high and emotions will be vented with much enthusiasm as well as fury. So what made them furious you might ask, for those who did not listen???

It all started with this debate on which gender was more intelligent and who thinks rationally. I didn’t expect two harmless, yet logical sms-es to ignite the anger of the majority. In those sms-es I questioned, “If women are more intelligent and if they think rationally, why was the power to grant “Talak” given to men???” and “If women are more intelligent, why did history dictate that men were “khalifahs” (caliphs) and that men became “Nabi” (Messengers of God)???

You can imagine the amount of vile and venom that ensued. There was a listener who called in and poured forth her fury, condemning my comments as nothing more than stupid and crappy. She also said she was disappointed that Pujangga Malam‘s mentality had deteriorated after he got married and he does not think as well as he did in the past. When “Pied Piper” started to blow her flute, naturally the minions and brickbats followed suit, assassinating my character and applauding her for coming out in the open to attack me. Some even said not to mix religion with what was being debated. Was I angry??? Nope, because these people fell right into my trap hook, line and sinker and proved my questions right once and for all.

First and foremost, marriage and fatherhood hasn’t changed my way of thinking one bit. In fact, I believe it has evolved to an extent whereby the initial big picture has gotten even bigger through time, and as usual, the general masses find it difficult to comprehend just like before (Some things never change, do they???). It’s easy to say the more intelligent species are the more renowned billionaires, inventors, scientists, chefs etc. But that is too subjective when you also have influential females bridging the gap these days as Hillary Clinton and Ho Ching amongst others have showed. Just because I used words like “Talak“, “Khalifah” and “Nabi” doesn’t mean I’m using religion as a means of reasoning. I used those examples as proof of the stature of men since days of yore and when it comes to reasoning, men are looked upon as those who think rationally than jumping the gun and acting on impulse. It is mere logic being put forth for people to mull over the big picture.

As I always complain, with 160 characters in the sms, you can only comment so much and hope others would think the way you would or at least ponder over what you said without being too quick to retaliate. I was only more than happy that when that caller called and called me names, along with her emotions and hell-hath-no-fury tone, she proved me right in what I was trying to put across in the debate. If they think that I have ceased being the thinker I once was, I think they themselves have not moved forwards in their way of thinking. What I’m just displeased about is the way they complained and criticised bothered on personal issues when they all know I’ve always been objective. Saying my way of thinking has deteriorated after marriage and parenthood, is as good as blaming my queen and my princess of things that they are not guilty of, and that is bloody personal!!! I’m kinda appalled the person who said that my chromosomes were lacking from all the waking up at night to feed my daughter, works in an architecture firm and has a family of his own. Smart??? I wonder which part of him is. I don’t find it humourous coming from a fellow parent.

So do I regret after all these??? As usual, I would say not one bit!!! And I definitely would put forth thought-provoking comments like these in time to come just to test the way my community thinks. Yes, radio is entertainment, but radio is also an institution where the mind works to make the community be an even better one. The DJ also played a part in this and I can’t thank Hafeez enough for kicking up the storm and testing the listeners’ resolve and mindset. Only in Bistro with Hafeez around can these kind of free-for-all comments be aired. Good thing too, cos if the other segments were to follow suit, my monthly handphone bills will be up five-fold. A few years ago we had Syah Ibrahim kicking things off in the morning with Hafeez following suit for another four hours. Right now, I can only contend myself with four hours.

The episode with me was not the only one that riled the listeners. Towards the end, one caller called in and complained about the Indonesian maids who called in, blaming them for not doing their work and having too much free time calling the radio station. To some extent I agree with her but she also has to remember that this is their only medium to entertain themselves when most of the time they are bogged down with housework, on top of the fact that they are away from family and don’t meet their friends till weekends come by. Not all maids are bad and not all normal people like us are good. In any case, there will always be a small minority that would affect the mindset of the majority. We shouldn’t be too quick to stereotype them and put them down. I agree that some of these maids are irritating when they call, cos they like to ask stupid questions and get carried away, but we learn to be more tolerant and respectful and accept that without them, our lives would be even more unmanageable (for those who have maids).


I bring you more pics of Syahindah Adawiyah at the recent breakfast event with Imran Ajmain. Thanks to Vintage07 for allowing me to “borrow” the pics and putting them up in this blog. As you guys can see from some of the photographs, she’s very inquisitive with Imran‘s laptop and wanting to touch it even when he closed and put it on the floor. The actual sizes of the photographs can be seen at the link above. Enjoy!!!