Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Iron Horse Driver & Ipoh's Mother-lode of Liew

Food, Weekender, The Star

On lucky occasions, writers stumble upon stories they feel an instant affinity for: stories they enjoy exploring, reliving, and in some cases, eating.

These were two such stories :)

Above is my ode to an all-time Ipoh favourite - liew! Be still my wagging tongue :D

On the same day, this came out:

Scratching post, Weekender, The Star

By now, I already know that these kind of low-wattage pieces about everyman don't register nearly as many hits, but my ode to Abang Azmi of KTM surely ranks as my favourite of all time for now, next to the jungle rain piece I did for Going Places in March 2009.

I must have met Azmi in January or so. After getting down from the train, I jotted down my experience in one breathless rush as soon as I could get my hands on a pc, and filed it away with the dozens (maybe hundreds?) of other drafts I've written and tucked away in my computer.

While I knew his story was too compelling to reserve for my own enjoyment, I just couldn't hit the perfect final note. Even after dozens of drafts, I felt none of them were good enough to do justice to him, nor stand up to public scrunity. At one point, I despaired of it ever seeing the light of day.

The day it came out, I duly sent Azmi an sms in the morning, citing page, section etc.

One of his replies was: "I dah war-war kan artikel you pada kawan-kawan I."

Wow. Don't you think that single sms captured the zeitgeist of his personality, far more eloquently than my 1K whopper?

That man sure has a way with words ;)


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