Thursday, March 02, 2006

The Sultan Of TV.


Ours is the second house in the village with a tv. You know for sure about this since no way you can miss the steel pole almost as tall as a coconut tree right outside the house. It holds the antennae big as the ribcage of a dinosaur. You may have a father or a mother who love you very much but it's not the same as having a tv in the house. A tv will make you more important than Tunku Abdul Rahman that your friends will say yes yes yes to everything you say about anything that comes to your mind.

You can say something like, your brother is stupid.
Yes.
Your sister is stupid.
Yes.
You are stupid as a cow.
Yes.
Your mother sleeps with Daud keling.
Yes.
Your father sleeps with a whore.
Yes.

You can even say, your father and your mother will to die tonight.
Yes.
Sometimes they cry. Which is better because you can threaten them with, you are not coming to my house tonight to watch tv with the rest. You see them wipe their tears to cry even more, silently, body jerking violently like a fish out of the water.

And you feel so powerful. As powerful as the Chinaman who works the projector of the cinema. Maybe even more powerful than the guy who owns the movie house, or Cik Wei who runs the government movies from a landrover of Jabatan Penerangan. Besides Cousin, I am the only person in the house who know how to turn on, and turn off the tv set. Nothing is more powerful than this in the whole wide world. Even DYMM Sultan Ismail has someone to turn on the tv for him because he doesn't know any better how to do it himself.

The whole village will troop to the house from as early a little after Maghrib that Grandma has nothing but complaints about the house being turned into a movie theatre with music blasting at the holy hours, children not performing their evening prayers now that they are not afraid of hell because the tv is right before their eyes to entertain them with Malay movies about some stupid ghosts coming out of a grave. I perform my Maghrib before she can start on me. Of course she doesn't know that I perform it the fastest I can, not reading anything in between the rukun, hurrying through it all standing and sitting, standing and sitting, standing and sitting to complete the 3 rakaat. I don't pray behind Grandma anymore because she takes a long time to finish the 3 rakaat that in the end she says, you are coming with me to the masjid tomorrow for jemaah. I wish she just die and shut up but Aunt says, either that or she will return the tv back to the Chinaman. It's hard not to feel angry especially when both of them talking in turn, complaining about you right in front of the whole kampong folk who came in to watch Hantu Jerangkung. Of all the time in the world they have to do this now when the movie is playing and everyone is trying to be scared hiding inside a sarung, peeping through an opening no bigger than a matchbox.

7 Comments:

Blogger Diran Kesuma said...

man... do you have a job? if you do, is there any vacancies? reason i am asking is i am baffled by the phenomenal rate of your entries. you are one productive individual man... it is like you have nothing else to do but update your blog. that is an interesting life, or job you have man.

6:13 PM  
Blogger anggerik merah said...

the TV and the living room turn to be movie theater especially during Malays movie time was something that I experienced when I was really small. Also Jabatan Penerangan have this movie shown in the paddy field after they make some kind of ceramah...the old days!

6:21 PM  
Blogger bergen said...

Diran Kesuma: I'm looking for one, sir. Any job will do as long as it pays the bills and puts a decent meal on the table. And with enough left to give Aunt Su her weekly pocket money, although she doesn't really need it.

Anggerik Merah: All that is but a distant memories now. Diran Kesuma, you are a movie guy, what do you think if you include the scene of kampong folks going to the wayang padang to watch Bridge On The River Kwai, or something like that.

8:22 PM  
Blogger AuntieYan. said...

Those were the days!!..:-)

1:14 PM  
Blogger LifeBloom said...

Am guilty of praying too fast when I know that my favourite show is on tv as well.....Even now!!!

5:58 PM  
Blogger Sayuti said...

(read and agreed to diran kesuma's comment)

(read but ignored anggerik merah comment)

(read your reply to diran kesuma)

suddenly exclaimed, "no wonder..."

(skipping the rest of the comments and write my own)

8:08 PM  
Blogger Mama Rock said...

the only time i got to stay up late was when the neighbours came down to watch TV at our house :)

11:24 AM  

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