Thursday, 27 November 2014

Happy Birthday!

Some day in November 2014.

On leave and after my usual morning walk in the forest, received a SMS from yt:
"Think you wait for her to wake up then go lunch and bathe."
My reply was short as usual:
Then I remembered...
"Happy Birthday baobei. Give me advance notice. Walking in the forest."
Next this SMS came in:
"Can send previous SMS again? First part only, haha."
My sweet wife. Love you, ever, forever….

In the photograph: my sweet daughter working hard on her batik painting.

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

That Report Book!

Wednesday, 5 Nov 2014.

Reaching home after work, yt said...

"Your that friend ah... Aiyo, you want to sign her report book?"

Taking tz's report book, my heart was pumping... pumping very fast till I am wondering if I am going to get a heart attack?


Not good, not among the top in her school. Not that bad either, I think. Not that bad I think it would be. At least the lowest among her 3 subjects is still above my expected marks.

加油 tz!

Next, I started practicing my signature on a piece of paper. Once, twice, three times... I continue practicing to get that perfect signature in tz's report book. It must be like after 20 times then yt said...

"Aiyo... don't need to be so stressed. When will you stop practicing and start putting that signature of yours on her report book?"

The next morning...

"Wa!!! I like practicing more than 100 times before I sign on your daughter's report book!"
said yt.

Err... who say don't need to be so stressed huh? Haha...

That first experience with tz's report book. That Report Book. Interesting, isn't it. That classic reaction all parents will have to face.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

The girl that got addicted to blogging.

Saturday, 22 Nov 2014.

Over dinner last night with me,
tz asked:

"Daddy, can you put my video of in-line skates on your blog and write something about it?"

I nodded.

"Daddy, now la. Ok?"

Aiyo, speaking Singish again. Mummy is going to have headache you know? Anyway, your daddy is not a professional writer. I really can't just write in any place at any time. Well, a promise is a promise and that's why I sat in McDonald's writing about it today.

After a long long time, my blog. Not that I have nothing to write or no mood to write. Just no time... Or lazy? Haha...

No time, or rather can't find time to write because I got addicted to walking and getting the opportunity to catch up listening to my downloaded podcasts. Oh, or is it the other way round. Hmmm...

Good addiction anyway, either way. Right?

By the way,
tz started with scooter, then bicycle, and now in-line skates. Err... what's next?

How nice if it is bachelors, masters then doctorates degrees. Sigh~

Saturday, 23 August 2014

It hurts, but it's ok.

Tuesday, 29 Jul 2014 at 6pm.

Had a long walk home this evening and it had been awhile since I last did that. That must have accounted to my recent increase in weight. Haha...

Today's walk is not only about the need to log that 10,000 steps per day, but also to expel my anger and reflect on the event that happened just hours ago.

Everybody have their weaknesses and so do I. For this particular weakness or rather fear, I had been trying to look for opportunities to fight it. I had been taking baby steps, but constantly so that I hope to conquer it sooner rather than later. It's one of my hindrances towards my dream.

My worst fear, that weakness won again this afternoon. I am fortunate to have people who are understanding and giving me the much needed support and advice. All, except one who took the opportunity to capitalise on my weakness. I am not sure what the intention was. Maybe I might have triggered that reaction from my earliest unacceptable behaviour to the person. Maybe it's resulted from my speech previously spoken. Maybe I might have hurt that person to be treated in this manner. 

All this were after thoughts during my long walk home. At that moment, I really felt like giving that person a punch or at least fight back with more hurtful words. But I did not. I did not because I don't think my action is going to be of help during that situation. I did not because if I were to fight back either in words or action, how much difference will I be as compare against that person. Moreover, there might be a reason for the behaviour which I have yet to find out. In any case, it just dented my pride with no other damages. Why take revenge when it was in fact giving me a good learning opportunity to toughen up myself.

I was very surprised, disappointed and hurt by the action of that person than the words used, or my inability to overcome my weakness again.

Well, I will practice harder and keep trying for that dream of mine. Life is a journey when we came with nothing and left with nothing. It's the experience in life that we should treasure. Everything comes for a reason. Rather than rejecting it, why not embraced it for the lesson that it brought along to teach us.

I am sorry for that thought of wanting to fight back on those hurtful words. 

I will move on with this episode. Please remind me, uncle life. Holding on to that revengeful thought only waste the previous memory for the better things in life.

P.S. – It obviously hurt me more than I expected. I am still wide awake at 3am that day! Haha…

Saturday, 16 August 2014

Shouldering the responsibility of parents.

The train along Circle Line reached Caldecott, its door opened and a young Chinese couple walked into the cabin. The lady was seen holding very tightly to the arm of the trendy, well dressed gentleman. Soothing his hand, the lady doesn't talk along the journey, neither did the gentleman.

At Bishan Station, a motorized wheelchair's siren started buzzing when it reversed itself into the cabin. Everybody in the cabin was shocked, not by the wheelchair's buzzing, but the high pitch and continuous screaming from the gentleman. The lady was visibly troubled by the behaviour of the gentleman. She keeps soothing his hands, telling him:

"Mei mei (sister) is here with you, it's ok kor (brother). It's just the sound from the wheelchair."

It is then that I realised the gentleman may either be suffering from autism or some form of mental health illness. He is blessed to have a responsible and caring younger sister that take good care of him. He is so well taken care of and well dressed that if not for his screaming, nobody will notice he has a disability or illness.

At the same time, I feel for the young lady. For her entire life, she will have to make sacrifices for her elder brother. She will have very little time for herself. She may not get a life partner as not all spouse and in-laws are so accommodative towards her brother's behaviours. And she will continue to be starred at by the public whenever she is out with her brother.

Hope she is strong and have good support.

Saturday, 9 August 2014

Daddy, I am the Quiet Captain!

Thursday, 24 Jul 2014.

On my way home, my phone rang and the first thing I heard when I pick it up was:

"Daddy, I am the Quiet Captain!"
Thereafter, she goes on and on about when it happened, her roles as Quiet Captain and the other roles teacher had assigned to her other classmates. I can feel her excitement and I also felt bad for she could only call me, and not share her happiness in person with me. How many more moments I am going to miss with the little fellow? I wonder...

She ended our conversation by saying:
"Daddy, I need to wear the badge every day, I show it to you tomorrow morning when you send me up my school bus!"
That's my girl.

P.S. - By the way, she wasn't that quiet at home. Hmmm.... should I also give her a badge at home? Nah, I will miss her sweet voice if I do so. Haha...

Friday, 1 August 2014

Learning to be a father.

Sunday, 15 June 2014.

It's father day today, and a day of great importance in today’s standard.

I happened to know it through the numerous postings on Facebook, advertisement seen everywhere and most important of all, the preview and greeting from my lovely daughter.

"Daddy, later you cannot see what I am doing, OK? It's a card for an important day. Hee hee... "

As the year’s passes, things changed and so does the way we celebrate father's day and the role of father.

Till I am in my 30s, I have never heard of Father's day, the special celebrative day in the world. Whenever I saw those posts on father's day and how they had celebrated father's day, I am lost with my words. I had never celebrated father's day with my father, and the phrase "Happy Father's Day!" is totally alien to me. However, I am not guilty and I know neither is my father sad about it.

My father is proud for being the pillar of the family, for being able to bring in the money to support the family. His greatest achievement is his ability to support his children to secure a diploma each, despite the fact that he did not have any formal education and he was fighting an illness to live at that time.  He is a sailor and a man with few words, so few that we can count the number of words he says within a year. Well, that's partly resulted from his sailing schedule where he only came home once every 2 years. He did not attend any of my birthday celebrations, which only happens 3 times before I am married (once when I turn 21 and twice planned by my then ex-girlfriend aka. wife). Neither did he attend any of my school graduation ceremonies. He only went to school once with me to apply for school fee subsidy and loan of school text books, when he lost his income due to the illness he had been fighting. During that day, it's the first time I saw him smiling. My teacher was full of good comments about my studies and character. I am happy that day too because I made him proud despite the tough life we had.

Fast forward 40 years later, I am now a father. I am a father that has to face a totally different set of challenges. I played Barbie with my daughter, brought her for her enrichment, dance, art and swimming classes, I changed her diapers, bathed her, combined her hair, talk nonsense to her, and even carry my wife's bag so that she can hold my daughter or free her hands to choose my daughter's clothes during shopping. All of which I had never see my father doing. Without a role model, I am kind of having my on-the-job (OJT) training as I grew to become what it's expected of a new age father.

It's not about I am or my father are a better father. It's how the roles of father had changed with the progress of mankind and under the expectation of the society. It's kind of difficult for men to cope with those changes. I can't look out for the bus while talking to 小tz. I can't talk to her on the phone while I am attending to my work. I can't watch the television programme, do my stuff and talk to her at the same time. In short, I am taught and trained to mono-task. Multitasking like what mothers are always doing is just too overwhelming for me, you know?

The other day, while waiting for my bus, I saw a mother with 2 children seated with her back facing the traffic. She was helping her daughter with her ponytail when her son shouted to her that their bus has arrived. She wasn't panicky, finished the ponytail for her daughter then walked with her 2 children to board the bus. Perfect timing and I was like "How she did that!”. Women, they say.

Are you coping well being a father?

I am struggling with my new role. Happily struggling...

Unlike being at work with a team of colleagues that compliment each other’s strengths and weaknesses to complete our daily work, I am alone as a father. I don’t have anybody to share or take some responsibility away from me as a father, and I can’t. Nobody can replace me as the father of my daughter. I guess the only then is to be a good student and continue to learn to be a good father.


We were watching World Cup where the battle was between Iran and Nigeria on Tuesday afternoon, 17 Jun 2014 at SAFRA. tz wrote this on my phone and ask me to post it:

We went to watch football at SAFRA, it was so interesting and I like it so much. ThE cRaZy DaDdY’s wife also likes to watch football. I thought ThE cRaZy DaDdY does not like to watch football, but he was watching the football too! The screen is so BIG!!! ~The End~

From tz and ThE cRaZy DaDdY.

Note: She took my phone, if I don’t watch football, what should I do?! Anyway, I really don’t like watching football, except to see matches by Brazil and South Korean. Both teams transformed football into an art when I seen them during the last World Cup. We just happened to be there and though why not let her be part of the craze now in Singapore. Haha… 

Saturday, 26 July 2014

This may happen to you...

Monday, 19 August 2013, 11:30pm.

As usual, Jennifer was getting ready to complete her writing on her diary after a long day. Taking out her diary, Jennifer realized that she finished writing on the last page of her diary yesterday night. 

"Damn it!" 

Jennifer shouted at herself for not remembering to buy a new diary on her way home this evening.

"Of all days!!! Why must it be today and at this hour that I need a new diary?"

Jennifer again grumbled to herself. In her office this morning, her colleagues had just warned her to go home earlier tonight, as the Chinese Hungry Ghost Festival Month will starts today at 12 midnight. For the entire 7th month of the Chinese Lunar Calendar, the Chinese believed that the Hell Gate will be left open and the ghost will be free to wonder on earth to fill their stomach. Earth will be very crowded after midnight, just like how Universal Studio Singapore is filled with visitors on its first day of opening. 

After 15 minutes of struggling to sleep counting sheep, hunks, and even monies, she remains wide awake. She blamed it on her 10 over years of habit writing diary before her sleep every night, a habit she practices even while she travelled overseas. Remembering that she had an important presentation tomorrow morning, she reminded herself that she can't afford not to have a good rest. After all, age is catching up and she will looks like a vampire if she can't get her rest tonight.

Banging on her ability to protect herself as an ex-police officer, she changed and set off to hunt for her new diary in her neighbourhood.

After walking for some 10 minutes or so, she finally found a bookshop that's still open. Having stayed in Yishun for the last 5 years, she doesn't recalled seeing this bookshop. When she was about to enter the bookshop, her Casio G-shock vibrated, indicating that it is now 12am on Tuesday, 20 August 2013. Or better still, the start of the month long Hungry Ghost Festival.

Walking into the shop, she was greeted by a thin gentleman wearing a pair of black plastic spectacles. With sunken eyes, whitish and pale face, he asked her what she wants in the most eerie voice she ever heard.

After telling him that she was looking for a diary, he asked her to follow him to the row of shelves that display the diary. Following behind him, she cannot help but think that he seems to be floating. Maybe it is because he is too thin and too light, she started finding excuses for her observation.

Scanning through the diaries on display, she found one that she likes very much. The shop owner grabbed the dairy before she managed to take it for a closer look.

"Are you sure you wanted to buy this? This book is the last of its kind!" said the shop owner.

"Yes! Any problem?" replied the determined Jennifer.

"Very well then, young lady. This is a blessed dairy and it will cost you $10. It will bring you good luck for as long as you treat it with respect." the shop owner paused, gave Jennifer the most eerie look then continues...

"Remember! Even if you had finished the diary, do not, I repeat. Do not turn to the last page of the diary, or you will have to suffer the consequence of your foolish act!!!"

Jennifer got worried after hearing that. However, as if a mysterious force had pressed onto her, she just simply can't convince herself to buy any other diary. She paid $10 for the diary and can't wait to leave the bookshop.

Once she reached home, she immediately sat down to write her feeling for the day on her new diary. Unable to overcome her curiosity, she turned to the last page of the diary. On its last page, right at the centre of the page, Jennifer saw 2 rows of words written in bloody red ink. It reads... ... ...

Promotional item:
3 for $10!


P.S. – I heard the Chinese version from a podcast. What I did was translating it into English and localized it for Singaporean. Can’t give credit to the originator as I cannot remember her name and podcast. And… if you feel like throwing bricks, eggs, stone, etc at me, DON’T! It’s not my work, pleasssseeee…. 


Friday, 25 July 2014

No, I really can't.

The other day, I was delighted to read a heading of an article that says:

"From a fat tummy to a six pack abs in 8 weeks. If he can do it, so can you!"

Ya, ya, ya... That’s too good to be true, right? But you know, I do have a fat tummy so why not learn something that may help me drop a few more kilos! 

After reading the articles, my dreams got crashed. Went down to nothing, you may say. The writer of the article is a Director cum owner of his own company. He engaged a Director/Owner/famous fitness trainer of a popular gym to assist him with his plan. He ate specifically cooked meals involving mainly proteins like beef with mixtures of vegetables. Each session of workout at the gym was carried out on expensive equipment with the famous personal trainer. He ended his article saying:

"If I can do it, why can't you?"

No, I really can't. I can't leave my workplace and go for gym training every single day.  I can't afford a personal gym trainer, what's more, one that is so popular. I can't pay for the membership to go to the gym. I can't afford to spend the money and the time to cook the special diet required.

"If I can do it, why can't you?"

I can. Provided that there is a level playing field of which resources are also made available to me.

Else, I can't.

It is not that just because I am less well off than the other person that I embark on giving such comment. I simply hope that whenever we say something like this; do think if it is a fair statement. I would rather hear words like this:

"I can afford it. I am sorry, you can't."

A true and honest statement and not one that is sarcastic and fake.

Friday, 18 July 2014

Just some random thoughts.

It has been 2 years since I began this blog. It was started with a very simple objective. To leave words behind for my daughter if she does decide to find out about me and what we did when she was young.

2 men were instrumental in getting me to write and put up this blog. My late father and father-in-law. Both were men of the 60s. The old resilient Asian men that we hardly see in today's generation. They were good men with few words who prefer to bring in the money and ensure a minimum standard of living for their family. Both prefer not to explain their action, and let their action speak for them. However, many, me included did not discover their good intention and failed to understand them. I've been fortunate to be given the chance to know both of them better towards the end of their life journey.

That gets me very worried. What if I followed their style, became less chatty and decided to keep everything to myself? Well, many of my friends may though that is almost impossible, right? I chose to be better prepared than to leave those to fate. I will never underestimate the power of our environment, circumstances and peers that may change us. 

I had explained, but some of you may still wonder. Since the main objective of this blog is to leave words for my daughter, why then am I actively promoting it? It is all part of my effort to ensure that this blog remains accessible (not password protected) and is on the top of a search. I had in mind, if there are 2 or more "Ling Chong Beng" or "The Crazy Daddy" in this world, at least this blog will be displayed among the top few listings during a search.

Along the way, while the main objective did not defers, this blog had also become an avenue for me to let go of my many frustrations in life. A place to practice my writing skills and a connection point for the limited group of readers I had. Having said all the above, I am still learning, as I always said. My expression skills, grammar and readership for the blog are still way below average. But I am learning, just like how I am learning to be a good father.

Friday, 11 July 2014

Characters vs Disability

Vesak Day, Tuesday, 13 May 2014.

Experience the opportunity to witness 2 entirely different people in the same restaurant while enjoying my buffet.

See, when it comes to buffet, I don't just eat and eat. Haha...

Person A is a Chinese Singaporean with well-to-do family. Both parents dressed well with expensive accessories. Father is only concerned with imitating the slang of his European friend and impressing him. Mother is busy giving in to person A.

Person B is a European with an average family. The whole family, including his sister and her family were seated together, talking and enjoying their meals.

The only similarity between the two were likely be their IQ level. 

Person A is a boy about the age of 6. Person B is a teenager with Down Syndrome.

That's the only similarity as far as I can see.

The boy was shouting, screaming and running around the restaurant, taking utensils from almost every table if nobody stops him. Then giving it to his mother who ran after him, not to intervene buy to support his utensils collecting spree. Once in a while, he would run back to his table, grabbed some food using his hand, stuffed into his mouth then continue his routine of disturbing others.

The teenager on the other hand, was polite and observe social norms. He eats well and talks softly to his family members. I met him at the egg station and was delighted to see him waiting patiently for his turn to order his omelette. He even say thank you to the cook after he got his omelette. 

Am I saying that Europeans are much better than Asians?

Definitely not. Earlier on, a group of European men seated at the table next to ours, was seen grabbing 2 containers of fresh milk from our table. After they finished the milk, they just placed the containers on our table, not in its original place and didn't even bother to say thank you or sorry. Walking back to our table, the group was seen dragging our table to form a bigger table to accommodate their friends who have just arrived. They are aware that the table belongs to us. Moreover, our food and bags was also left on the table. I have to tell them its our table before they stopped their nonsense. 

A lot of time, we judge others based on their disability, race, country origin and wealth. I am just trying to proof that it is not true.

Friday, 4 July 2014

Another bad dream?!

Sunday, 1 June 2014.

Remember the bad day dream I had about having a morning jog with yt and 小tz? I had been thinking about it and I really like the idea, but not the sport. So here comes the idea of having a morning swim together. That is what 小tz and I did this morning.

Well, what happened next caught me by surprise. She brought along her new swimming board, we bought her upon her request. It is supposed to help her to better her strokes in front crawl, said her swimming instructor. Yes, her front crawl still needs lots of effort, but her kicks are powerful. Holding on to her board in front and kicking, I have a problem catching up with her.

Go, Chong Beng, go!

Better practice harder before the jogging bad dreams translate into the swimming scene. Haha...

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Like father, like daughter, eh?

Brought 小tz to dinner and discovered that she had the same habit as I, of leaving the best till the last. She finished most of her rice and what are left behind were the steam fish, steam eggs and sweet & sour pork.

I always thought that the habit I had when I was young, were resulted from a poor background. The need to keep the best for raining days.

Anyway, a delighted new discovery on my crazy girl.

Friday, 27 June 2014

Uncle Life.

Life delivers a pretty unique ways of handling our affairs. You know, when you think you had the hardest time ever in your life, it added yet another challenge for you. When you are happy and in a celebrative mood, it hit you with a bad news. When you believe that you had been doing good, it continue to throw you challenges to fail you one after another. Don't you guys agree? He is just so unpredictable.

Ladies and gentlemen, please say hi to uncle Life!

He is an important part of my journey here on earth. I have numerous encounters with him and one more to add lately. He just told me a bad bad news. Well, the catch, fortunately, is the words "if" and "might" embedded into his message to me.

That's great news isn't it?

If the "if" and "might" did not materialize, then the message is as good as null. Hey, time to call for a celebration, don't you think so.

Maybe I had been bad, that's why Uncle Life has been very active with my life. Well, he can do what he wants. Who am I to dictate what he should or should not do? As if I am bothered about his intervention. I can either cry, worry and/or feeling frustrated about his action, or I can continue to live my life till the day comes with the bad news.

Give me a tiger! Nope, not the one that eats meat, the one that is yellow and serve cold. The beer!

Oops... just remember I don't drink beer. Give me a cup of tea then. 

Friday, 20 June 2014

Who should be my friends?

Dear 小tz,

Now that you are into the next phrase of your life, it sort of gets me worried.

With less than an hour with you each weekday and 2 full day of weekends each week, after taking away time I needed to work late, time I needed to work over the weekends, time you spend on travelling, school, swimming, dancing, enrichment class and sleeping. You likely spend more time with your friends than with me. 

If I guess what you may be thinking, based on what I was thinking when I am at your age, friends are likely more cool than daddy and mummy added together. Right? For one critical consideration, while both parents and friends can be fun to be with, friends at your age will hardly tell you off when you did the wrong things. How then can friends not be cool? It's fun, fun and still fun! 

I thought it would be good at this phrase of your life that I share with you, my definition of a friend. 

A friend is someone that enjoys your company. A friend will treats you well. A friend will share the good things with you. A friend will care for you. A friend will want you to be good. A friend will help you when you call for help.

A friend will not only come to you when they needed something from you. A friend will not take things from you without asking for your permission. A friend will not steal your things. A friend will not lie to you. A friend will not keep asking things from you without sharing what she has. A friend will not tell you to do the wrong things. 

Having said that, I am not telling you that whoever that doesn't meet the criteria of your friend become your enemy. It is not meant to be that way. Anyway, it is not good to have enemy. They are not helpful and contribute to your worries, anger and frustration. Remind me to talk about it the next time when we wait for your bus in the morning. 

I have friends and enemies. I have enemies who I tried not to be bothered or forget. I also have classmates when I was studying, teammates when I was volunteering and colleagues that I work with while I am at work. Not all of those people are my friends as they did not meet my criteria of a friend. However, I don't call them my enemies as they did not hurt me in anyway.

So you see, not everybody that I know and knows me are my friends, and it's totally fine with me. People my age no longer threaten to not friend me if I do not do what they wanted me to do. However, that happens frequently while I am your age, just like what you may be experiencing now or you will likely to experience soon. I have very few friends since young till now, as I have strict criteria in selecting friends. I only have a few but good and trusted friends that I can depend on in needs. Do I feel bad for having fewer friends? Nope, in fact I feel better as I don't need to struggle whether to make a friend happy or do the right things in life.

Please remember my sweet princess; if a so call friend asks you to do a wrong thing and you get into trouble, he or she is unlikely to come to your help. You will have to face the punishment for doing the wrong things. Do you still want this type of friend?

Your crazy and caring daddy.

Friday, 13 June 2014

The hindrance against conscious and logical thinking.

Are we moving in the correct direction? 

Ever since mankind becoming better equipped with knowledge, skills and tools for our so called enhanced quality of living, we saw the constant creation of laws, SOPs and guidelines. The number of those laws and SOPs just keep increasing. Everything was covered to guide us in our daily and professional life, and state consequences for violation.

Did we get better with those guidelines and had crime been substantially reduced?

I think not. I did not do any research on this. However, I got a strong feeling that if we gather the total number of crimes committed and plot them against the total population, the stories say otherwise.

We got so used to following SOPs that we try searching for one when we are faced with issues. When there are none, we are quick to create one to ensure we have all situations covered. We are so dependent on the SOPs that we are unable to react appropriately when there isn't a SOP to guide us in that situation. We lost our ability to apply logical thinking and develop immediate strategies to solve the emergency we encountered.

Then the problem came about with the laws and SOPs used as a yardstick to measure against conscious and ethnics. When a person committed a crime or an offense, laws and SOPs were used to determine if the person is guilty. We had through the years saw cases of how an individual managed to twist in the interpretation and use of laws to escape judgment. As comprehensive as the laws and SOPs can be, even after gaps were filled with an addition or amendment, its effectiveness lies on the person who enforce it. When one justified that he or she did not violate any laws or SOPs, it not necessarily means that he or she is conscious clear. Only the person will know. Well, perhaps the person may not even know or be aware that what he or she did wasn't ethically correct.

I am not against laws or SOPs; there is a need for them to be there to provide guidance and as a yardstick for our life and work. However, they should be simple and short so that one can remember during an emergency, giving critical outcomes to be achieved and not steps to be followed. They should not attempt to provide detailed procedures for every single situations, but required outcomes needed for emergency so that it encourage critical and logical thinking during an emergency, instead of flipping through the laws and SOPs for a solution.

While we are working on refining of laws and SOPs to cater to the changing needs and environment, we should not neglect in instilling good morale and the ability to apply logical thinking in us. Without a good morale and the ability to apply logical thinking, laws and SOPs only serve as an excuse to do the wrong things and prevent us to apply quick critical thinking in solving issues and save life during an emergency.

Friday, 6 June 2014

I think too much.

Saw an ex client I supported previously walking towards me. While waving to him to say hello, he suddenly stopped. I waved to him again and signalled him to move on, thinking that he might be worrying that I will tell him not to pick up trash. He smiled at me, hanged his umbrella on the railing, raised his leg then tied his shoe laces. 

I am thinking too much, I said to myself. 

This, I agreed. However, there are times when we pointed out mistakes committed by another person and they turned around to say we are thinking too much and had over reacted. 

What rights do those people have to put in such a comment without strong evidence to prove their point? Ethically, they don’t have that right. In fact, they ought to answer to their conscious for the wrong doing. That's ethically and in theory on the assumption that everybody has equal rights. 

Well, that will never happen. I will be kidding myself if I believe so. I did not believe in such a theory but anyway, I continue to point out what's wrong. I got my head banged and unwillingly pulled along a few others to suffer with me, for many times in my life. I have no regrets as I can answer to my conscious and sleeps soundly every single night.

Adding on, even if I am, how can I not over react when things happened again and again. Where is the reassurance for me not to over react, if I did? 

I bless those who are still in their own world to be awakened, to see for themselves the outcomes of their act. 


Thursday, 29 May 2014

What is your favorite subject?

During a lunch to celebrate Mother's Day... ...

Grandma: "小tz, what is your favorite subject in school?"

小tz kept quiet... ...

Grandma: "Is it English, Math or Chinese?"

小tz still did not answer grandma's question.

Mummy: "I know. P.E., right?"

小tz nodded her head.

Grandma: "Why P.E.?"

Mummy: "Don't need to study ma. Right, 小tz?"

小tz nodded her head again.

Grandma: "What is your second favorite subject?"

Mummy: "I can answer for her. Her second favorite subject is Music, third is Art and if there's a fourth favorite subject, it will be dancing. Right, 小tz?"

小tz: "Mummy, how do you know?"

Mummy: "All don't need to study. Right?"

Daddy at the side facepalming...

Aiyo, this is not the way darling. Academic results are still very important at this stage of your life. Without it, you can't go far. You are fortunate that your daddy is not like your grandfather. If not for the fact that it is compulsory to have an ECA, I would never get a chance to play a saxophone. True enough, even when the school allowed me to go back, your grandfather stopped me and asked me to focus on my polytechnic studies. I started drawing straight lines in architectural plans instead of still life with shades and shadows. 

Your grandfather said to me: "Complete your studies, earn a salary, then do what you want."

So I picked up my saxophone again when I was 27, learned cartoon drawings when I was 29, started Taiko Drumming and doing arts when I was 30+. 

I stopped all those again many years back because you and mummy came into my life. In life, we have our obligations and responsibilities. Sometimes, we needs to put personal interest aside for other greater responsibilities.

I am not asking you to be what your grandfather had asked me to be. You don't need to stop all your interest and hobbies. What, I asked for is that you put some effort into your studies, to get a good grade and have the capability to pursue your higher education. 

The minimum requirement for education had changed over times. When I was in my primary school, I was told that having a PSLE will get you an executive job. Before I can even completed my primary school education, it was said that you need a Secondary School education. Then a degree when I was in polytechnic. Now it's a master if you wanted a good and comfortable life.

It's not that I wanted to force you to study. What I wanted was to ensure that you build the minimum foundation, while I can still bring in the money to support your education. Thereafter, it is okay for you to explore your other interest as I am assured you have a safety net in case things doesn't work out.

Put some effort into your study, please, darling.

Videotz introducing me to her new game. 

Monday, 26 May 2014

Do you have this?

Do you know what this is? It is a Rainbow Loom. The latest craze among kids and I just got one from my daughter last night. She proudly told me that she made it for me and mine was the first she had completed, others in our family will still have to wait for their turn. She took half a day to make it and I must wear it forever, she said. She also mentioned that she had carefully chosen “boy boy” colour for me so it’s ok for me to wear it at work.

I proudly show it to the audience during a presentation this morning. Not only to illustrate how close I am with 小tz , but also to put across a point that it is difficult for parents to let go of their child even when they are adults. However, it is a must as parents will never be able to outlive their children.

I keep telling myself to have the determination to let 小tz have the opportunities to learn to be independent and be resilience to face challenges in life.

Thanks for the Rainbow Loom 小tz. 

Yes, I will wear it with me forever and take good care of it. After all, you did warn that if I lost it, then I will have to wait till you complete making for everybody before it is my turn again.

Love you 小tz.

Friday, 23 May 2014

Simple things in life that leads to happiness.

Wednesday, 24 Apr 2014 at 7:20pm.

While waiting to cross the road at a bus stop, I saw an elderly man coming down from the next bus, running, waving at the bus in front of me and trying to catch up to board the bus. I smiled and waved at the driver, indicating that the elderly man is trying to board the bus. She looked at her side mirror, smiled and nodded.

Up on the bus, the elderly man smiled and thanked the driver for waiting. The driver smiled and pointed to me. Both the driver and the elderly man turned and smiled at me before the bus drove off the bus stop.

Nothing special, just some show of gratitude, simple gestures, acknowledgement and smiling by 3 strangers that makes the day for all the 3 of us. Simple things in life we do that leads to happiness.

Reaching home, I was rewarded with a bowl of salmon porridge topped with white baits, just like what 小tz is having.

Actually, I rushed home just to have dinner with the little fellow. yt SMS me earlier that our little princess was having fever and ate very little during lunch. Rushing home for dinner, I hope to encourage 小tz to eat more. I tried to eat as slowly as I could, hoping she would eat more with me accompanying her. Well, it's hard to overcome the old habit; I was done with my big bowl when she was still trying to finish half of the porridge on her small bowl.

The little fellow smiled, for it's the second time her crazy daddy have dinner at home with her.

Love you little fellow.

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

It's just 9 minutes.

It's just 9 minutes.

9 minutes of laughter, fun and teamwork on Friday, 16 May 2014 starting at 7:41pm, presenting an opening performance for 400 audiences during our Organisation’s Dinner & Dance in Compass Ballroom, Level B2, Convention Centre, Resort World Sentosa.

But this isn’t our usual 9 minutes. Lots of effort had been channelled into the preparation for the 9 minutes. The selection of the 3 songs for the medley, the changes after changes made to the choreography, the recording of demonstration video for the song signing and dance movements, the script writing, the planning and recording of the video to be screened on the actual day, the rehearsals, and the coordination of the sequences with about 60 persons across several centres all carried out within one and a half month. We even managed to make some last minute changes to the choreography due to on-site constraints.

The end result is simply and wonderfully great feeling seeing the surprise look from the audiences. When they thought that it's it, we managed to surprise them again and again, giving them wave after wave of excitements. I personally liked 4 segments of the entire performances that thrilled the audiences. First was the interruption to the usual countdown with a 2 minutes humorous video, teaching the audiences the Key Word Signs needed for the song signing subsequently. Then mid way through our first song "We go together" when the audience thought it was just a usual stage performance, the stage dancers interacted with the 8 dancers who suddenly appeared on the 2 big projector screens. The third excitement comes after the first song ended and when the audience started clapping thinking that it is the end. We surprised them with the beginning of our flash mob with 22 people walking out from within the audience and signed the chorus of "I just called to say I love you". Lastly, they were overwhelmed with 60 of us joining in to dance in the grand finale of “You can’t stop the beat!”.

This is definitely a fun and energetic moment for all of us! In my self-praised opinion, it was an awesome performance and I am delighted to be involved with the team of fun and committed people. It is also my first experience to be in the team, coordinating a flash mob for 60 people.

While I am full of praise to the team for a great effort (self-praise again, haha…), there were also lessons we should learn from this experience. (1) We need to use more contrasting colours in the video, to prevent the video having a wash out effect if we are unable to dim portions of the room's lights. (2) If we intend to have audience participation, it should not be done towards the end of the performance. We also need time to warm up the audiences.

Lastly, this post is intended for everybody that participated and/or contributed towards the fun, joy and success of this flash mob. It is equally important to dedicate this post to my daughter, tz who had watched all the video we produced over and over again during the one and a half month when I was helping to prepare for the flash mob. She had also been singing:
I just called to say I love you,I just called to say how much I care,I just called to say I love you,And I meant it from the bottom of my heart.
This will definitely form part of the great memory I had, and I would like to thank everybody for giving me that opportunity to try something new!

Photo: Part of the organizing team for the flash mob.

Thursday, 15 May 2014

Assumption is bad.

A bad person, I am.

For months, I had been secretly laughing at the noodle stall owner. Before the incident, I had seen him smoking, gambling and drinking at the coffee shop where his stall is located. When I notice that his wife no longer come over to help him manage the stall, deep in, I laughed at him for he deserved to be without his wife, to be alone for life. Who asked him to smoke, gamble and drink, I thought.

For months, I have seen him struggling to manage the stall alone. He looks tired, disoriented and lifeless. While I didn't like his behaviour, I still buy my favourite noodle from him. It’s tasty and in anyway, his behaviour had nothing to do with his noodle.

Ok, Ok... I am just addicted to his noodle. Giving me excuses to patronize his stall.

I felt bad last weekend. Felt very bad for being judgmental, very bad for secretly laughing at his suffering, very bad for the wrongful accusation without finding out more.

His wife was there when I ordered my noodle last weekend morning. Her hair was short, almost bald and seems to have just grown from a clean shave. She also seems to be very tired but I can see that she feel relieve and happy to be back.

No, I am not going to judge again. What facts do I have to know what had happened to her? What rights do I have to find out what had happened? What position am I in to judge her? It is bad enough that I had likely made a mistake judging her husband. It would be very bad for me to judge her this time.

How I hoped I have the courage to go up to him to apologize for my bad behaviour. But no, I don't have the courage to admit that I had been secretly laughing at him. What's more, he will likely think I am crazy cause the act of laughing at him only happens in my mind. What I can do is likely to eat his noodle more frequently for now.

Please do not follow my mistake. Don't judge unless you are 100% sure, supported by evidence. In any case, who are we to judge?

I am sorry.