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Showing posts from July, 2010

Love and marriage in 1962 and 2010

I am doing some research on a project which entails going through back issues of the The Straits Times in 1962.

As I scrolled through the 1962 articles (which have been stored in microfilm) at the NSTP Resource Centre yesterday, an article by Esme Baptista (Vital questions for a girl about to wed) caught my eye.

It was on Page 12 (The Straits Times, September 4, 1962) and the strap line read MAINLY FOR WOMEN. Baptista wrote for urban women in Malaya including Singapore and her article referred to changing attitudes towards marriage in the East at the time.

Young Malayan women were then beginning to discover the freedom to choose the men they want to love and marry.

Arranged nuptials were no longer the only option for them, and, as noted by Baptista, "unions arranged by match-makers are becoming fewer".

Parents in independent Malaya must take into account the realities of the time. "However 'modern' some parents may think themselves, they still do not always unde…

Sabah is Veena's paradise

Life is seriously good in Sabah, says Berita Harian Sabah bureau chief Veena Rusli.

"Every inch of Sabah is amazing. What is there to complain when you live, work and play in a holiday destination?" adds the bubbly Seremban-born, who has called Kota Kinabalu home for more than four years now.

Veena looks at Sabah, known as "the land below the wind", with the eye of a person who appreciates the simple things in life. Living in Kuala Lumpur for many years as a journalist had taken a heavy toll on her.

She extols the virtues of a stress-free life which she has found in Kota Kinabalu.

Unnecessary pressures such traffic jams and flash floods are minimal in Kota Kinabalu and these lessen the impact of  managing the worries of everyday life .

I met Veena in Kota Kinabalu recently. I was there to attend the RHB New Straits Times Spell-It-Right Challenge which took place at the Suria Sabah mall over the weekend of July 4-5.
I was struck by her bubbly nature. Her cheerful, frie…

Guest Post: NST younger than Vampire Bill

Guest blogger and New Straits Times journalist Jehan Mohd just realised that this year marks the 165th year of the NST. How time flies when you're having fun, says Jehan, who is 31 years old, a mere sapling as compared to Vampire Bill, who is 173. Here she lets loose her thoughts on the connection between NST and Vampire Bill.



'Twas the day before Friday and all in the office,
Not a writer was stirring, except for those at the keyboard.

That changed, however, when the Genting Group started setting up for a special tea they've giving us in conjunction with NST's anniversary (we're still waiting).

We knew of NST's impending birthday a couple of days ago when the Group editor informed us to make ourselves available for the tea that the conglomerate famous for its casino is organising for the occasion.

I just hadn't realised how old the old dame was until I saw the wording on the cakes delivered by Shangri-La Hotel and Nikko Hotel (who brought just cake, not t…

Say 'no' to sexual harassment

"I have always found you sexy," says a male executive to his female colleague, who is also an executive in the same company.

Tasha, the 40-year-old female executive, tells me that this is not the first time that Johan has uttered those words to her. "Sensual," "alluring" and "hot" were other favourites.

Tasha's response to Johan's appreciation of her beauty is always a simple "Thank you". She feels good that this man finds her attractive but she does not take that as an invitation to begin "something" with her colleague, who is a very charming 50-year-old.

Tasha is happily married and she does not want to do anything that will jeopardise the loving relationship she enjoys with her husband. Johan is married too but the status of his relationship with his wife is unclear.

How should Tasha view Johan's attention? Is it a compliment or an insult?
I am bringing this issue up in response to the recent announcement that it…

Buah Tarap: A chance encounter

You learn something new everyday. My friend Alina is very fond of repeating this. And I agree with her.

Today I tasted the Buah Tarap (Tarap Fruit) which is said to be unique to Sabah/Borneo.

My colleagues and I arrived in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah this afternoon; we are here for the RHB New Straits Times Spell-It-Right Challenge which will take place at the Suria Mall over the weekend.

After checking into the Beverly Hotel we walked to a nearby eatery for a spot of tea. It was then that I chanced upon the Buah Tarap and began snapping away.

My colleague, who had eaten the fruit in Bandung, Indonesia, was excited to see it. He bought one for us to try.

The stall vendor split the fruit into two and we bit into its flesh. Everyone liked it but describing its flavour remains a challenge.

The fruit, which looks like nangka (jackfruit) or chempedak,  has an unusual combination of tastes: it is sweet but not as sweet as the jackfruit nor as chunky. Words fail me.

It feels so light that you want …