Sunday, January 08, 2012

jalang-jalang cari makang

It was not that I had a 'thing' against people in Terengganu. Just because I had 1.5 failed relationships with their men, it did not illustrate my frustration.

You could not also say that I don't fancy just because more than eight Terengganu men called me "pongpuang" during Piala Malaysia match few months ago. Indeed, I screamed when I saw a boy who did not say or do anything beaten up by those Ganu fellas. It was true that I called them men without balls if they wanted to hit me. I hated their guts for being brainless. Well, in the first place, I was saying, "Takdo tolo ko?" But that was my accent and I believed they could not understand that.

But eight men versus millions of population out there seemed pointless. Okay, we plus 1.50 ex-boyfriends. It was still nine with point several zero percent of the people in Terengganu.

However, I did not know why was it hard for me to understand the fact that some accent could be really weird. I watched Jalan-Jalan Cari Makan this afternoon and felt that how could a famous program like that could be so unfavourable towards Terengganu accent. I remember my Terengganu housemate, Tanti who used to tell me that the accent was quite strange. Whenever the letter 'G' was not required, they would used it. Take example the word ikan which has been pronounced as ikang. In contrast to that, whenever the letter 'G' was required, they eliminated that from the word. Like "udan dang soton" which supposed to be pronounces as "udang dan sotong."

I used to laugh at that - considering that I was a barbecue freak. Both me and Tanti were wondering how was it going to be if we were to advise our friends to enjoy grilled "ikang, udan dang soton." We mentioned how hard it would be if I, as someone who loved to laugh about bad pronunciation, would marry a guy in Terengganu. I couldn't even stop grinning at a guy who has a short tongue and couldn't pronounce anything with 'S'. Like "sedap" sounded like "tsedap." I also could not imagine a guy who is in Malay we called, "sengau."

I just couldn't help laughing or going crazy with things like that. I remember laughing loudly at one of those annoying Chinese auditors who came to audit us last year. I mentioned "zero" and she mentioned "jillo". I called "Zul" and she called that person as "Joe."

Well, obviously laughing at one's pronounciation was my worst attitude. It became a habit in a way that I did not realised. Probably I had enough of people laughing at me during the time when I could not speak Welsh or understood pure English accent really well. I started to pick up so that no one laughed at me in the end.

It was also because I did not appreciate one thing which was very important. Something which was called language and culture. It was true that until today, I still can't figure out why the letter G must be something which determined Terengganu accent. I also found it funny on why Badrol Baktiar; the famous Malaysian footballer was not being called Badrol Bakhtiaq in Kedah. Or the fact that Negeri Sembilan people loved the word "jobo" to address a snob while other states were using the word "jubur" for something else.

I also failed to realise that most people are blinded by culture. Sometimes I even wonder how a man from Sarawak is making love to his wife from Kelantan. Do they talk? Or they would just used gestures?

My goodness. I became stupid thinking about all these things!

Yes, sometimes culture could be strange and funny. Just because our cultures were different it didn't make that the person who pronounced ikang, jobo or Bakhtiaq an alien to us. If the blood type was O then the person would be damn valuable should you need a blood donour.

Ultimately, cultures, in my opinion were something to be tolerated. For example, I, who had those problems with pronounciation managed to keep a relationship with a Pak Chak. Yes, I was a laughingstock back then when I mentioned that Sepet's nephews were calling him that. We in Negeri Sembilan did not have such title. Personally, there were times when I missed his Northern accent or differences but frankly speaking, there were other language which could substitute the awkwardness. We used English instead.

But there were cultures which were too awful to be compromised. This morning, I read an article about fish which were cooked while they were alive. The head was uncooked but the body was fried. Kosmo managed to catch my attention with this article. I posted the article in a group that I joined in Facebook and the reaction was " it was normal for something like this to happen".

Yes, lots of people ate bizzare stuff. But to let a creature to be half alive and half dead were totally horrendous for me. It was like keeping a clerk which has been beheaded by his boss everyday to do the same thing over and over in the dark office. Or it was like a keeping a wife whom you don't want anymore. Or some other things like that.

That fish, for me, had a very outrageous way to die.

But it died because of culture, wasn't it?

So, I'm asking you, working people out there:
We have office culture. The politics. The people who laughed at differences. Or the person who laughed at misfortunes. Or the group who loved potluck and dining out.

Are you living the culture, or dying in it?

pix credit: Kosmo: Odori


*SiRibenMerah said...

drooling tgk ikan tuh!

Sharian Zamrinor said...

i live in Pahang-Terengganu border and i am dying here....polek2 lah the way they speak here