Remember the Hmmm.. Hijrah video I made a few weeks ago? I submitted it to Filem Negara for a competition and was invited to the prize giving ceremony. Filem Negara did not mention whether or not I was shortlisted or anything like that so I wasn't expecting anything to happen. I was even convinced that I will only go there to have lunch and get a participation certificate before going back to Alor Setar.
I even told my cousin that I will bring along an extra pair of shoes that I could use to throw at the organizers if they didn't give me anything to bring back like the customary participation certificate and free mug.
But when I registered my name, I was informed that I was seated at the top 10 table. Ohmaigod. The gentle and harmless butterflies in my stomach evolved into wolf-vulture hybrids. I began to revised my videos and asked the other contestants about their videos.
After the speeches by VIPs, they announced the top5 and I was one of them. We were asked to stand in front of the crowd when they announce the winner. This never happens before. What are they thinking? This is not Akademi Fantasia or American Idol! Shortly after forming a line on the stage, they announced the winner.
Okay fine. I didn't win. So what did I get? 2nd? 3rd? Apparently, there were no first runner up or second runner up positions, just the top 5 title. So I thought to myself, I have to see the winner's video. He must be really really good. And then the most unexpected thing happened. The winner's trophy cracked and broke apart. Oh man, this is so typical especially for a competition organised by the government: Lack of quality and over-emphasis on the VIPs.
After the VIPs gave away the trophies, they showed the winners' video. I watched the video intently and made my own personal verdict. "What bullshit!" I thought out loud. I thought the competition is about creativity. Since when is a slide show of a university creative? But then again, it's a Filem Negara competition. I mean, I'm not being cruel when I say that RTM made the worst commercial videos in Malaysia. It's just the way it is. A stagnant and complacent environment results stagnant and complacent products and mindset.
I went home with a trophy and a scroll container containing a note that says that a certificate will be sent promptly along with a RM500 cheque by post. Segala kesulitan amat dikesali.