Halloween Story: The Tale of Jack O'Lantern

Halloween is around the corner. Catholics will celebrate the All saints' day and All Souls' Day on 1st and 2nd November which is related to the origin of the Halloween day. However, many people consider it as a secular celebration. It is also my Birthday (1st November)! As I have no time to write, I would like to share a story/ "cerita rakyat" of Halloween. For those who will attend Halloween costume party, I suggest you to bring a Jack O' lantern along. Haha...

Jack, the Irish say, grew up in a simple village where he earned a reputation for cleverness as well as laziness. He applied his fine intelligence to wiggling out of any work that was asked of him, preferring to lie under a solitary oak endlessly whittling. In order to earn money to spend at the local pub, he looked for an "easy shilling" from gambling, a pastime at which he excelled. In his whole life he never made a single enemy, never made a single friend and never performed a selfless act for anyone.

One Halloween, as it happened, the time came for him to die. When the devil arrived to take his soul, Jack was lazily drinking at the pub and asked permission to finish his ale. The devil agreed, and Jack thought fast. "If you really have any power," he said slyly, "you could transform yourself into a shilling."

The devil snorted at such child’s play and instantly changed himself into a shilling. Jack grabbed the coin. He held it tight in his hand, which bore a cross-shaped scar. The power of the cross kept the devil imprisoned there, for everyone knows the devil is powerless when faced with the cross. Jack would not let the devil free until he granted him another year of life. Jack figured that would be plenty of time to repent. The devil left Jack at the pub.

The year rolled around to the next Halloween, but Jack never got around to repenting. Again the devil appeared to claim his soul, and again Jack bargained, this time challenging him to a game of dice, an offer Satan could never resist, but a game that Jack excelled at. The devil threw snake eyes—two ones—and was about to haul him off, but Jack used a pair of dice he himself had whittled. When they landed as two threes, forming the T-shape of a cross, once again the devil was powerless. Jack bargained for more time to repent.

He kept thinking he’d get around to repentance later, at the last possible minute. But the agreed-upon day arrived and death took him by surprise. The devil hadn’t showed up and Jack soon found out why not. Before he knew it Jack was in front of the pearly gates. St. Peter shook his head sadly and could not admit him, because in his whole life Jack had never performed a single selfless act. Then Jack presented himself before the gates of hell, but the devil was still seething. Satan refused to have anything to do with him.

"Where can I go?" cried Jack. "How can I see in the darkness?"

The devil tossed a burning coal into a hollow pumpkin and ordered him to wander forever with only the pumpkin to light his path. From that day to this he has been called "Jack o’ the Lantern." Sometimes he appears on Halloween!

Taken from the Catholic Update: "How Halloween Can Be Redeemed," by Page McKean Zyromski



BZ is busy.

Busy eh... Sik pat mok update blog musim tok. Banyak esemen mok dipolah. Dahlah exam dah nak dekat. Masalah pun mala jak menimpa nasib ku. Huhu... Apa-apa pun, ku mesti tabahkan dirik.
Banyak benda mok ditulis rah blog ku tok sebenanya.Tapi ngantik time cuti lah. Time cuti kelak ku "memuntahkan" segala topic nok terpendam sitok (mun ada berokband la, sebab mak ku madah nya mok beli berokband pakei online rah kampong). Ku mok menghafal lok pakei ku "memuntahkan" otak ku time exam kelak.

In Memory of Rebekah Tiong

October 2, 1988 -October 15, 2010

"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest." Matthew 11:28

Deepest condolence to her family.

Safely Home

I am home in Heaven, dear ones;
Oh, so happy and so bright!
There is perfect joy and beauty
In this everlasting light.

All the pain and grief is over,
Every restless tossing passed;
I am now at peace forever,
Safely home in Heaven at last.

Did you wonder I so calmly
Trod the valley of the shade?
Oh! but Jesus' arm to lean on,
Could I have one doubt or dread?

Then you must not grieve so sorely,
For I love you dearly still;
Try to look beyond earth's shadows,
Pray to trust our Father's Will.

There is work still waiting for you,
So you must not idly stand;
Do it now, while life remaineth--
You shall rest in Jesus' land.

When that work is all completed,
He will gently call you Home;
Oh, the rapture of that meeting,
Oh, the joy to see you come!

Although I was not a close friend of her, losing a nice colleague leaves a big impact to me. All of sudden, she left us. As we were learning, working and struggling together, we never expect this to happen, plus I and even her closest companion did not have the chance to say goodbye to her. Now, she have no more sufferings and agony. Maybe it is not a permanent farewell, because I know, she will join the others in the heaven, waiting for us. Life must go on.


Memorable Convo Fest with Mike

It is the Convocation season in Malaysia! Firstly I would like to congratulate all graduates of UNIMAS this year. I can really feel the excitement in the air. I can't wait to graduate. mine is next year (hopefully). Haha...

Myspace Layouts

9th October 2010- I was feeling disappoint because nobody could fetch me back to kampong. I thought there will be nothing to do this weekend. So last night after dinner, I did my laundry. It was rainy that night, and I wonder, who would want to out tonight? As I hang my clothes at the balcony, I heard a familiar voice coughing outside. It was Mike. Ah, I got his message... He brought an umbrella. I changed my pants immediately, grabbed my sweater, hand phone and purse, and approached him.

“So where we are heading tonight?” I asked him. Sounded like asking him to go to some place like cinema, party or else. We are living in modesty, we do not have any car or money to rent car. so it means that we were only deciding to go out to some place nearby. “Let’s go to East Campus. It’s Convo Fest (pesta konvo). Is there bus at this time?” I said. “Sure! I have not eaten yet. Plus, Sixth Sense is going to perform tonight.” Oh boy, why didn’t I know about that? Why didn’t the news spread earlier?

As we arrived at the bus stop, I was quite surprised to see the crowd waiting for the bus. Nampaknya hujan bukan penghalang. We waited for almost an hour and the bus was just like melimpah ruah dengan manusia sampai macam nak mengalir keluar melalui tingkap (hyperbole). Hahahaha... Ehem... As we reached East campus, we tried to find some place to eat. Situ pun banyak manusia juga, dahlah hari hujan! So, we sacrificed our energy to Desa Ilmu to have supper first (it was already 10pm).

We went back to East Campus and people were still waiting for Sixth Sense. Sixth sense came a few minutes later and the crowd were screaming (maybe Sixth Sense were wondering why the screams were not loud and merry enough). It was rainy and everybody held umbrella. I assumed that was the reason. Adi (vocalist of Sixth Sense) kept asking for more voices from the floor, because the audiences were quite dingin. “Do not get us wrong Adi, there are really lots of fanatic fans of you here,” I thought to myself. I usually scream in concerts, but I couldn’t do so because I had a cough cold. Plus, no one near us was screaming, so I shy to scream at least once. =P By the way, we really enjoyed their performance. I am not a fanatic fan but I really really love their fantastic music.

Mike asked me to capture some photos during the concert but unfortunately, my phone was out of battery! Damn! Adi loves to be close to fans. He went down to the floor twice. The second time he went to the floor, he walked to the right side of the stage first, then, he went toward us on the left side. At first I was just watching it on the screen. Few seconds later I did not realize that Adi was running right in front of us (I was still watching the screen!) and I was really shocked to see him as I turned my head down. He lent his hand to the audiences he passed by. So I quickly strecthed out my arm to reach him. Mike was successful and (perhaps he was the last audience Adi touched) but I missed it! That was close...Damn! When the concert was over, I yelled with envy at Mike.

That was not the funny moment yet. Next, we waited for the bus. It was past twelve already. It seemed like everybody was a Cinderella. Only two buses were scheduled first, and both of them were damn full like melimpah ruah again. We waited for half an hour I guess, but the buses had not move yet. There were too many students in the bus yet way too many students waiting outside. So, most of us decided to walk a parade home. It was really like a parade! Walking from East Campus to West Campus is like walking 3 miles! Some students were demonstrating by blocking the bus. Many were recording the crazy moment and mentioned about uploading the photos and videos in Facebook. Finally we reached west Campus safely. Everybody was gone and the Campus was suddenly quiet. Gerenti tidur berdengkur lah diorang malam ni, tapi main fesbuk dulu... Mike and I had a chit chat for a while before he sends me home.

What a student life...


Can Tokay Gecko Really Cure Cancers?

My family is finding an idea of what kind of business to run. Running homestay, cabinet making, handicraft and agroforestry are among the choices. It is just a plan anyway.

Tokek found in jungle.

One day, my mum asked me about Tokay gecko (Gekko gecko) or locally known as cicak tokek (because it makes sound like "kekekek"). She said that this geckos price so high up to a million ringgit (I am not sure what parameter measures the price). I asked her why is that so? She said that she read from many websites that these geckos can cure cancer and people around Malaysia are hoo-haa about it. She ordered me to ask my grandfather whether there are such geckos in the jungle of our village so that we can sell them. Urm... I never heard of the fact. None of my lecturers ever mention about it. I was very skeptic about this, and I hate selling wild animals somemore.

Tokeks can also live in houses (only in Southeast Asia).

So I went to browse some info about this tokek. Words that attracted me as I read the list of the entries are puluhan ribu ringgit and HIV. Then I clicked a blog that mention the tokek. It stated there that tokek have high therapeutic values which it can halt the growth of cancer, and acts against HIV and H1N1? Wait a second... H1N1? I thought vaccine is the only way to prevent H1N1 and there is no cure for the disease. Plus, it is very hard to make the influenza vaccine. It supposed to be so easy to cure H1N1 if the lizard can keep doctors away. The villagers only have to race and hunt more of this lizard without spending bulky Ringgits to cure H1N1.

Do you really know what is the meaning of vaccine? Generally, vaccine is an agent that resembles a virus or bacteria that causes a disease, made to stimulate the immunity system of the body so that antibody that against the virus can be produced. Actually, vaccine is an inactivated or dead virus/bacteria, when inserted to our body, the immune system can recognize them without any harm occur. As a result, the immune system can easily destroy the real one in future. It is not easy to produce influenza vaccine including H1N1 vaccine because influenza viruses can change (mutates) rapidly and frequently. So how can a lizard's tongue be a vaccine? Think, think and think!

Okay, maybe I should think more deeply. The article also mention how does the potion in the gecko can heal the diseases in a scientific way, not a magic way. The active ingredients that do the fighting is the "Tri-heksipentafenikol" (name given by IUPAC, spelling is in Malay/Indon because the article is in Indon). I suppose the spelling in English is Tri-hexipentaphenicol. Now that sounds really convincing... I became very convinced and started to think "lets go hunting!"

WAIT... Curiosity urged me again! How does the trihexess... what was it again? Ok, Tri-hexipentaphenicol act? I am not a chemist, I only know basic substaces/compounds. So, I browsed for it and the result was:

We did not find results for: Tri-hexipentaphenicol. Try the suggestions below or type a new query above.
  • Check your spelling.
  • Try more general words.
  • Try different words that mean the same thing.
  • Try asking a question on Yahoo! Answers

Then I tried using different approach. I went to the NCBI Entrez browser and applied boolean operator to make query like I learnt in Bioinformatics. I typed "Gecko AND cancer". No desired results found! Then I searched for it in google scholars. I searched for Gekko gecko and cancer again. There are no entry about it....

So, what can I conclude here is, there is no such thing! It is just a HOAX! There is no scientific evidence to verify that tokek can cure diseases. But if you really know that tokek really can cure diseases, please correct me and prove me the fact. Humans are greedy. But I am still wondering, why tokek?


Bidayuh Lady of the Month (October): Carrie



Siapa warga Pichin yang tidak mengenali Carrie? Walaupun tinggal di pinggir kampung, Carrie cukup dikenali serta disenangi oleh semua penduduk Pichin tanpa mengira usia, jantina, taraf hidup mahupun taraf sosial disebabkan sikapnya yang ramah mesra dan suka membantu orang tanpa mengira bulu. That’s what we call versatile!

Carrie suatu ketika dahulu menjadi impian para jejaka. Malangnya kini tidak lagi. Kenapa? Adakah kerana beliau sudah tidak cantik? Haha... Sebenarnya hati beliau sudahpun dimiliki seorang jejaka bertuah buat selamanya. Kini beliau sudahpun mempunyai seorang cahaya mata. Walaupun begitu, kecantikannya tetap maintain.

Carrie berasal daripada keluarga yang mementingkan pendidikan. Namun, ia bukanlah penghalang untuk carrie bergaul dengan belia tanpa mengira latar belakang. Carrie sangat terkenal dengan sifat ‘happy go lucky’. Beliau menyatakan bahawa beliau suka menjadi ‘centre of attraction’. Itu tidak dapat dinafikan kerana sewaktu beliau masih bujang, beliaulah ‘dalang’ yang menceriakan pesta dan meriuhkan parti dalam kalangan belia Pichin. We can really feel something missing in a party with the absence of her. She was the loud, the bomb, the attraction and she could even be the music.

Selain gemar menjadi tumpuan, Carrie juga seorang yang kreatif dan suka menjadi unik. Beliau suka melakukan perkara dengan pendekatan dan cara yang berbeza. Carrie baru menamatkan pengajian ijazah sarjana muda dalam bidang perniagaan. Walaupun beliau sangat sukakan keseronokan, ternyata pelajaran dan tetap menjadi keutamaan kerana ia merupakan jaminan masa depan dan panduan hala tuju hidup. She looks at the brighter side of her life. (Enjoy pun enjoy... Kena ingat juga perkara yang penting).

Keluarga juga menjadi salah satu keutamaan beliau, dan saya yakin ia adalah keutamaan yang paling atas kerana beliau sendiri berkata, "where we love is home, home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts"...yey...

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