SULTANMUZAFFAR (26 Februari 2002 - sekarang)

Seorang blogger, pelayar internet, penyelam scuba dan penagih tegar televisyen dan Wii. Melihat seluruh dunia di laman blog menerusi kamera DSLR dan kacamata tebalnya (kadang-kadang kanta lekap).

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Entri oleh sultanmuzaffar 23 June 2004

A work of fiction about Akademi Fantasia's Vince and Khai, meeting American Idol 3's top winners

by dchua@mmail.com.my or chua@nstp.com.my

This is a cerpen in English I recently thought up in my dreams and it involves Vince, Khai, the three beauties who won American Idol 3's top 3 positions, and Zainal Alam Kadir the entertainment journalist whom I know as a friend. He has read it and enjoys it.

This vision is entirely fictitious but it may turn out to be true. I had it while I was recuperating from a bad flu at home over the weekend.

The characters:
1 Zainal Alam Kadir, late 30s, a leading entertainment journalist who is "manager" of the Akademi Fantasia duo Vince Chong and Khairul Nizam Wahi.. From Muar, Johor, and a big fan of Vince.

2 Vince Chong Ying Cern, 25, Chinese-British from Kuala Lumpur. Handsome and strong gentleman who is the top winner of Akademi Fantasia.

3 Khairul Nizam Wahi (Khai), 25, from Johor Baru. Softy and sweet, sometimes sloppy. Owner of Nemo, an adorable white cat. Second winner of Akademi Fantasia.

4 Fantasia Barrino, 20, African-American who is the champion of American Idol 3. Soulful and perfectionist single parent (divorcee with one child). Admirer of things Asian. Always polite and friendly.

5 Diana DeGarmo, 17, Mexican who is the second winner of American Idol 3. Former beauty queen of the US state of Georgia. Playful and friendly, very attached to Khai and especially Nemo.

6 Jasmine Soriano Trias, 18, demure and sweet Filipino from Hawaii who is the third winner of American Idol 3. Good swimmer and lifeguard, very compassionate and sisterly towards soft Khai.

7 Nemo, Khai's adorable white cat.

The vision:
Zainal Alam Kadir (Alam) successfully arranges for Akademi Fantasia (AF) pretty boys Vincent Chong (Vince) and Khairul Nizam Wahi (Khai) to perform alongside the top three winners of American Idol 3 (AI3) in NY, US. Producers of AF and AI3 cut a deal earlier this year, unknown to the media save Alam, for Vince and Khai to appear in a special edition for Malaysian viewers only, of AI3. The title is "American Idol 3 Special Edition: Fantasia Meets The Academy".

Alam phones home:
While in the US, Alam gets to share a hotel room with Vince. How wonderful, Alam thinks. In the room, Alam makes a long distance call to John Tiong in NSTP. John tells Alam all is OK back home in Balai Berita. Khai gets to share his hotel room with Nemo, his adorable white pussycat.

So, how it went with Vince Chong:
Being the champion of AF, Vince, 25, was mentored by the soulful and perfectionist Fantasia (Barrino), 20, the champion of AI3. Vince proved a fast learner, and had a music video collaboration with Fantasia completed rather quickly. No hitches. America's newest pop queen thinks Vince will go far in Malaysian music because of his gentle and kind demeanour, and his humility.

o, how it went with Khai:
Softy Khai, 25, thought he would have an easy time being mentored by the second and third AI3 winners, namely the bubbly Mexican Diana, 17, and the demure Filipino Jasmine, 18, respectively.

But they were rather hard on Khai, who had a problem being slightly sloppy, sleepy and worse, possessing a minor acne problem.

Khai gets tickled by his cute mentors (electric shock of sorts) each time he says he is tired and needs a rest. They also pinch his acne out, a painful 10-minute process, so that he looks smooth-faced enough for the camera.

Nemo, Khai's faithful cat, is taken care of by some AI3 staff in the floor above Khai's studio. Khai tries to visit Nemo upstairs, but a power failure ensues as soon as the lift reaches the above floor.

Khai finds that he is claustrophobic, and becomes a little panicky and breathless. Fortunately, the power failure only lasts a few minutes, and even more fortunately, Khai's beautiful mentors are with him in the lift, to keep him calm.

At the end of the day, Khai sees his own standards improve, but he feels upset that he has "made a clown of himself". Nevertheless, his mentors apologise for being hard on him, and commend him for trying hard in what he does.

Khai realises that "saudara/saudari serumpun" abroad are vital to push up standards of Malaysian natives.

The end result:
The producers of AI3 and AF are happy with their end product, and with Nemo, the mascot of AF for bringing cheer to everyone.

Another vision about Alam, Vince and Khai I had while exhausted at home:

Zainal Alam Kadir (Alam) meets Vince Chong and Khairul Nizam Wahi (Khai) in the hotel lobby on the penultimate day of their visit to New York for the filming of the special edition of American Idol 3.

Vince and Khai tell Alam that they both had fascinating adventures in their dreams while exhausted in their hotel rooms the night before.

"It was a marathon. Facing adversity in every corner of the planet. But emerging unscathed. You were at the end of the tunnel with everyone else, Alam," said Vince.

"My travelling companion for the whole adventure, was Fantasia of AI3, who is just as mighty in facing adversity as me."

Khai said he had a similar adventure but added that he felt like frail Frodo of Lord of the Rings.

He said: "It was terrible, Alam. Bruised, battered, bloodied. That was me. Everyone else was unscathed, except me.

"I had to keep strong for Nemo, and for everyone on the planet, to survive. It was all a battle of mind over matter.

"My travelling companions, and saviours, were the Mexican DeGarmo and the Filipino Trias.

"They kept me, and Nemo, going.

"The former carried Nemo when the going got tough. The latter helped me walk when I was frail and losing blood."

"Interesting," Alam said. "I guess your American friends shared the same dreams, too."

Vince said: "Yes indeed. It was very coincidental. Fantasia also shared the same dream."

Khai said: "The same with DeGarmo and Trias. Only Nemo does not dream."

Vince Chong Ying Cern hereby narrates his vision:
"It is just like those wretched roundabouts you find in KL. They are always partly blocked."

"I am Vince Chong Ying Cern, a Chinese-British Malaysian lost in some remote part of the planet. With me is another lost soul, my African-American team mate Fantasia Barrino."

"All we have in our pockets is a note of paper which reads, "Follow the straight road and don't give up. Use the power of your mind. You will find light at the end of the tunnel."

"My team mate tells me that this adventure is something like "Rabbit Proof Fence" meets "Seven Years In Tibet". Interesting.

"Superhuman strength is required. We have to cross grand canyons, scale icebergs and alpine mountains, brave desert storms and cyclones.

"Even use our powers within to smash huge granite rocks standing as tall as KLCC in front of us.

"It looks impossible but we try. It is all about the mind.

"We both try not to get hurt by simply not thinking about injury. Thank God, we finish our incredible journey unscathed.

"This is like Keanu Reeves and Jada Pinkett inside the Matrix.

"Seriously, I felt very demoralised when I reached a huge mountain of granite standing in our way.

"But my team mate told me, "Vince, it is all in the mind. You can break it down, and so can I."

"We just focus on the giant rock, and smash it down like never before.

"At the end of the tunnel, is a door that shines bright.

"It is situated right where we began the arduous journey.

"I open it, and find, the real world of our studio.

"Alam is there to greet us. He embraces us.

"How wonderful," I think. "The pain is over. Freedom at last."

Khairul Nizam Wahi hereby narrates his vision:
"Vince and I had a common adventure. But I must say, Vince is Superman compared to me.

"I am Khairul Nizam Wahi better known as Khai. From Malaysia's third largest city, Johor Baru.

"With me is my faithful white pussycat, Nemo, who is almost a year old. "And with me are my fearless team mates, Diana, a bubbly Mexican, and Jasmine, a demure Filipino.

"As Vince said, we begin our arduous journey at some mysterious Point A, on the far side of the planet.

"We are armed with nothing save mysterious pieces of paper which read: "Follow the straight road and don't give up. Use the power of your mind. You will find light at the end of the tunnel."

"I am fit and able-bodied at Point A. But when we finally arrive at the end of the road, Point A again, I would be frail and constantly haemorrhaging from nose and mouth.

"Nemo is in good spirits, but at the end of the road, he shivers and meows from time to time.

"Our beautiful team mates are the only ones who are unscathed.

"We have to do pretty much the same things Vince and Fantasia did on their mission.

"But in my case, I deteriorate physically. The whole exercise is a test of mind over matter.

"Whenever I am weak and tired, my team mates tell me, "The universe depends on you. If you don't make it, everyone will perish."

"There is one stage where a cyclone flings a zinc roof at my face, and I am badly injured."

"Then, my Filipino team mate presses my wound, and she tells me "Think Wolverine."

"I discover my remarkable healing powers."

"In another stage, we scale very high mountains, and I start bleeding from nose and mouth. I feel very weak."

"My Mexican team mate tells me, "You cannot be a bleeder forever. Fight it."

"As I get frailer by the hour, my Filipino team mate helps me walk. My Mexican team mate carries shivering Nemo.

"There are times I collapse on the ground, and my Filipino team mate tries to curb my terrible haemorrhaging.

"Whenever I spout blood, my cat shivers and turns cold. My Mexican team mate rips part of my T-shirt to blanket Nemo.

"Finally, we arrive at the door, back at Point A. I open it, but it zaps me, and I fall to the ground.

"My Mexican team mate lifts me up, and I try to open the door again. I touch the handle, and it radiates a force that cleanses all of us.

"I am cleansed of all the blood on me. The blood which splashed all over my Filipino team mate's T-shirt also vanishes without a trace.

"Nemo no longer shivers. I cuddle my cat. My team mates also cuddle Nemo, and myself.

"Then, Alam opens the door. He embraces all of us. The real world beckons. It is back to the studio in New York."

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