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.