Tuesday, 31 May 2011

It's not right but it's okay* - Whitney Houston

We were talking about how some people would do anything to get ahead in life - specifically, the younger ones these days who suck-up to the bosses shamelessly.

We then talked about how this attitude is evident in all areas of life these days. People will just do whatever it takes to get ahead - not caring if it is morally or ethically wrong. Some would even go so far to do what is legally wrong! After all, it seems that it's the ends that matters - and the ends justifies whatever means we use to achieve it.

Take a simple example - when we drive on the road, people will not think twice but to just go right to the front and jump queue so that they need not wait in tunr for so long. And ppl like me are like idiots to them - stupid enuf to wait patiently in line for my turn.

There are many occasions when i stand patiently in a queue and people just "slip in" in front of me as if i wasn't there!!!! It happened when i was at Wimbledon queueing to get into a court - and it was two sweet looking old laides who just slowly moved in infront of me!!!! I wasn't gonna make a scene where people will no doubt side with 2 golden girls than this scruffy looking asian.

And what is even sadder is that if we try to prevent these people form doing what is morally/legally wrong, they snap back at us - instead of being ashamed at descending to such low means to achieve their selfish ends, they act like it is their inherent right to do so and we are wrong to prevent them!

How true what the Bible says - that there will come a time when people will say that wrong is right and right is wrong.

But i had to confess that i have been tempted to think that way. After all, what gain do i get from waiting patiently in line? Those who just "cut queue" will benefit as they do not waste time and they will not get into trouble over it.

Who who cares if it is morally wrong to suck up to the bosses in order to get ahead at work - instead of the stupid people who work hard, ethically and humbly? In the end, the former will get the promotion and the latter will remain where they are.

I feel sad that these days, ethics and morals are so low on the priority list these days. We focus on the ends rather than the means - so much so that if a football player cheats during the game, he can be touted as a hero!!!! (see here)

It's not right - but it's ok. And it's not just OK but it's commendable these days!!!

So why bother doing what is right?

I know there are many who still hold on to these ideals - and i salute them! They do what is right simply because - it is right!!! They believe in the inherent good of man and that if they stand up for right and against wrong, it will make a difference.

And there are some like me - who stand up for right simply because we believe in a righteous God. And this righteous God would demand only the same from us - to do what is right. So to me, that is my joy and reward - i'm not here to please my bosses or to satisfy my own wants. I'm here to live for him - and when i do what is right, he will be pleased. And that is all that should matter for me. As a good fren once said - "We should all live in the audience of one". And that one is of course God.

*She won the 2000 Grammy Award for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance for this song.

Friday, 27 May 2011

Who am I?* - Will Young

Kung Fu Panda 2 is out!!! We watched it last nite.

So how was it? As one online reviewer was saying, is it more like Toy Story 2 or Shrek 2?

I for one was a little worried. I want it to be good! I loved the first one so much. But can any sequel live up to it's predecessor that was really good? Not every movie is Toy Story.

Well, it did not blow me away. It was not a Toy Story 2 kind of sequel. To me anyways. Perhaps i was tired, perhaps i was too worried about my interview this morning (no, not job interview - in case you Taylor's management ppl are spying on this), perhaps the really lousy popcorn (which started to spill out from the bottom) spoilt the movie a bit... but i have to say that it was not a super enjoyable movie.

Still, i'm not saying that it's bad either. It was enjoyable! There were quite a few LOL scenes. New characters made it more interesting too.

What really worked for me was the storyline. We get know more of who Po is. We finally find out why is it he has a goose for a father!

We also get to see Po when he was a little panda - scenes which will surely appeal to the girls (Cue: Awww..... so cute).

Po was asked in the movie - and he asked himself the same question- "Who am i?" The answer? Simple - but i won't spoil it for you here.

So the sequel is very much a self-discovery journey for Po - and fortunately for us, it is an interesting and funny journey that we can join in.
I liked that that Po's character has been developed much further - and tied in to this is the theme of father and son relationship.

I'll prolly watch it again - in Cantonese! Sure, it's no Toy Story 2 - but how many movies can be like a Toy Story 2? At least it's not a Terminator 3!

*Memorable as it was in the charts when i was studying in the UK.

Thursday, 12 May 2011

Rain* - Madonna

I’m sitting with the sound of rain falling outside. I should be sleeping – there’re not many things much nicer than sleeping while it rains outside! =)

I love the rain! Maybe it’s cuz I usually can’t stand the heat – and in my country, rain usually is synonymous with relief from the heat. I know many do not like rain – and I fully understand it. In the weeks before the recent heatwave, it rained daily – and it caused much inconvenience! It not only rained but it poured. Thunderstorms. Traffic jams, trees being uprooted – and even for me cuz I had to turn off the modem which meant not being able to go online!!! Even now, I’m typing this offline!

But given a choice, I would like it to rain! Like now.

Simple pleasures in life – sitting by my window and watching the rain. I remember days I spent in London – not exploring the city but sitting indoors, reading, with a cup of coffee next to me, accompanied by the sound of the rain falling outside.

There is something beautiful in seeing the rain drops falling downwards, forced by gravity yet somehow, it does so almost reluctantly, using whatever friction there is in the atmosphere to stop it’s downward ascend – an exercise in futility as its destiny to reach the ground is inevitable. Perhaps what is more beautiful than that sight is the snowflakes wafting slowly down to the ground.

The view of everything changes – everything is covered by a layer of the rain – like watching the scenery behind a window. Only that the scenery is now behind a glass sheet of rain. It is eerie and beautiful at the same time.

The sound of the rain is in direct opposite of the sound of snow falling – while the latter is hauntingly silent, the rain makes its presence known audibly – but not in a distracting noisy manner but in a consistently comforting tune. How many times have I been awaken in the middle of the night by the sound of the pitter patter of the rain drops on the roof, and then being lulled to sleep by the same sound!

The feel of the rain is also lovely – altho it has been some time since I have been able to enjoy it. Perhaps I’m getting old – and running around in the rain is not something my brain would approve of! Not especially if the rain is accompanied by lightning! And also the body not being as strong as it used to be to ward of any sickness due to getting drenched in the rain. But I do miss the feel of the tiny little icy pin pricks on the skin of my body.

After the rain, everything seems nicer. Life seems better!!! I exaggerate - but not by much! =) Even the sun shines brighter after the rain. The world looks so much fresher, like it took a nice long hot shower!

And the rain can stir up something within me, to drag me out of a wonderful afternoon to blog about it!!! Trust me, not many things can achieve that – not just to drag me up but to get me to do so willingly! =)

*Her 5th single from her 5th album.

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Evergreen* - Will Young

Dear Shona and Hollie,

I talked about you two again in class this morning. For some reason, it was much harder than it used to be.

Time flies, doesn't it? My current students were only 2 years old when i last saw you two. I'm gonna get married soon, you know! Would have loved to bring her to mee you.

Perhaps, one sweet day, we'll all be reunited again?

I told my students that the last song you were listening to before you left was Will Young's Evergreen. In a way, it is kinda apt - cuz the memories of that time back then will remain evergreen for me.

*This was a remake of Westlife's song! Yes, for a change, it's not Westlife that remade a song - but just like always, the Westlife's version is not as good!

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

An Englishman in New York* - Sting

I love Jamie Oliver!!!! Well, not in that gay way!!! =P

I think he's really good and interesting. I could go on and on about him but i just want to blog about an episode of Jamie's American Road Trip that i caught last weekend. It was the episode where he was in New York.

I really enjoyed it cuz he went to places and sampled food that is not what one would expect - not on a travel channel. No, he did not do any of those touristy stuffs. Instead, he did what he always does - goes and searches out the interesting and often overlooked food-related stories.

His focus was on the immigrant community - rather large in the Big Apple. This is the placed where ppl go to fulfil their American Dream!

Here is an excerpt taken from his site regarding this episode:-

This episode of Jamie’s American Roadtrip takes Jamie to New York City, only this time he’s trading the upscale restaurants and neighbourhoods he’s used to for an apartment in one of the world’s most ethnically diverse areas: Queens. From his new home Jamie explores some of the food being cooked by New York’s immigrant communities: Egyptian, Peruvian and Chinese.

Jamie uncovers things he’s never imagined like an illegal restaurant run in a family’s living room and an anti-restaurant scene. The people who run these ‘supper clubs’ open their homes to strangers and feed them restaurant-quality meals, without the inflated prices and hurried service. After discovering this new side to the city he’s known for years, Jamie is inspired to hold his own supper club.

But perhaps the best part of this episode (to me) was when he visited Jorge who is an immigrant from Columbia. It was pretty interesting - as Jamie was not concerned so much about what Jorge was cooking but who he was cooking for.

Jorge has a full time job - but when he gets home, he cooks every nite for Colombian immigrants who are homeless and on the streets of Queens. Jamie follows him out and even helps to serve the simple food - to a lot of them, their only meal of the day in the freezing cold New York winter.

Why would Jorge do that? simple - he himself was like that in the past. He went into the States as an illegal immigrant and had to endure the hardships and suffering - and now he feels the need to help his fellow country man - based purely on humanity, nothing else. And his faith in God too.

One could see that Jorge has a big huge heart! i just did a search on him (angel in queens) and i came across many articles and videos about him.

I liked it when at the end of the episode, jamie was reflecting about the role of immigrants in our community - how his great granddad used to be rather "racist" about immigrants - even tho he himself was a Sudanese!!! It was a nice personal touch personal touch to it, not too preachy, but his simple view of how the immigrant community can contribute to our society.

*One of his classics! and one of my fav songs!

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Mad season* - Matchbox 20

With the exams here, i thought life would be much easier. I was wrong. Dead wrong!!!! Last week was prolly the craziest week of my life at Taylor's. There were some pretty difficult times but i've not remembered not being able to sleep for 2 nights in a row, just rushing to complete some work - which i still feel is not right to impose on us!!!!

Ah well...

Too lazy to blog about it - just reposted my fb statuses since last Monday:-
Pork noodles on Labour Day holiday! But after that, back to campus to labour on Labour Day. I'm a labour-holic...
02 May at 08:22

Drowning in work... but on the bright side, singlehood only has 4 more months before its expiry date! =)
03 May at 01:00

I got tricked!!!!! It's not as easy as it was made out to be!!!! =(
03 May at 10:47

Super stressed, so much work, crazy expectations... but in some weird sick way, i'm enjoying it.
03 May at 12:48

Paganini keeping me company as i try to keep meself from drowning in my work. The only way to stay afloat is to just keep swimming, just keep swimming...
Wednesday at 01:35

Classical music really goes well with law!!!! I've had Chopin, Paganini and now Mozart keeping me company! Reminds me of my law student days.
Wednesday at 13:33

Trying not to drown... just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming...
Wednesday at 16:56

Looks like there is no sleep at all tonight. I really did not sign up for this - and no one can expect me to be happy about this.
Wednesday at 23:40

Staying up all night long doing things which i feel by right shouldn't be imposed upon me. Ah well...
Thursday at 00:41

Not bad - i'm still plodding on despite not sleeping last nite - and sleeping very little the night before that. Well, i guess i can sleep when i'm dead...
Thursday at 15:17

Sleep is overrated!!!! It's gonna be another all nighter again - and i'm armed with lots of food and coffee!
Thursday at 23:38
Finally went to sleep on Friday around 10 am. It was scary as before that, i would be typing a sentence and midway thru, i would not know wat i was typing about!!!! The mind just switched off!!!!

This weekend, i was like suffering from jet-lag.

I hope the worst has passed...

The title song of their 2nd album.

Saturday, 7 May 2011

I like Chopin* - Gazebo

When i woke up this morning, this tune was playing in my head:-

Strange to have a classical piece playing in your mind? Well, i must admit that it has been some time since i've had any classical pieces in mine.

I like Chopin. Used to be such a big fan - one of my fav composers. I used to love the sound of the piano so naturally i was drawn to a pianist. And this piece is one of his easiest to recognise. I remember first really listening to this piece in a Tom and Jerry cartoon!!!! Yes, they used it in a cartoon! Not a bad way to introduce kids like me back then to good music.

This piece is also known as "Minute Waltz" - and there are people who say that it was meant to be played in 1 minute!!! Well, that is not true - i used to believe in that, tho! It is just a 'nickname' for this waltz as it is a 'small' one - a minute one.

I've listened to some people playing this waltz like a runaway train - sure, it may look impressive but it just spoiled the piece. It has this rather playful light feel to it! Maybe tt's why i love it - it was such a contrast with what i was going thru lately.

These past few days have been pretty crazy for me at work. Actually went 2 days with sleep (but with some power naps here and there) - and classical music has been keeping me company!

It reminds me of my student days when i used to study listening to classical music - i just needed some music to be there - enough to keep me company but at the same time not distract me - and only classical music can be like that! =)

More about my crazy past few days later. Now i still need to pay off some debts. Sleep debts!

*One of the big hits in the early 80s - interestingly, it has been categorised under the genre "Italo Disco"! Loved this song back then.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Deep water* - Jewel

I'm so in above my head... just struggling to keep afloat.

I guess the best way not to drown is not dissimilar to how not to fall off a bike. In the latter, one must just keep pedalling and moving forward. For the former, one will have to just keep swimming, i guess.

But in some weird sick way, i'm actually enjoying it! I was feeling really tired when i went to bed in the wee hours of this morning - but i did not collapsed and fall asleep immediately. I felt mentally alert! Yes, i'm actually enjoying this... =(

Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming...

* The first track from her album Spirit.

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Part of your world* - Jodi Benson

This has been sitting in my draft folder for a month!!!! Better late than never:-

Being engaged to marry means getting ready to enjoy married life - when 2 shall become 1. This means that she will share with my life and i hers.

She has fit in very well into my world.

Celebrations and outings with my family, frens and students

I must confess tho that it is taking me a little longer to do the same. Well, last weekend gave me an opportunity to not just be with her family but to with all her extended relatives as well!

It was an interesting time. I can describe it as 4 Wedding gatherings and A Funeral! Thankfully, the funeral was not of someone that we knew.

It was an eye-opener of how the people in a small town celebrate a wedding! The night before, we went over to her cousin's house for dinner. Nice home cooked meal, very home-y feel to it.

The next day was the wedding dinner - in a restaurant at Gopeng. Typical chinese restaurant, with a huge dragon and peacock decorating the back of the stage. The MC was also the entertainer! he was dressed in a bling bling bright orange shirt with an equally bright red vest! He was pretty good, i must admit. He sang and MC-ed and led in all the usual wedding dinner stuffs. He was clearly very experienced (and apparently he was English educated).

Being a typical wedding dinner in a small town, there had to be karaoke!!! Thankfully, those who went up to sing were pretty good - unlike my one other previous experience during my fren's wedding in a small town down south!

There was plenty of food to go around (unlike one which i attended recently at PJ where there were only 7 dishes) and plenty of alcohol too! =)

SEVEN, baby!!!!!

The next day, they had the tea ceremonies at both sides' home. Then we went to the groom's house for lunch. They catered from a nearby restaurant.

tGiF with her cousins, aunty and mom

During the time we were there, a funeral procession passed by. There was a band and then a lot of people walking - and the casket was carried - yes, carried by a few men - all under the hot sun.

Overall, it was not as bad as i dreaded it to be. And there were a lot of moments which were really fun - and one of tGiF's uncles is really like Jack Black!!!!

We were colour coordinated all weekend - but it was nto planned!

*Taken from the soundtrack of The Little Mermaid.

Monday, 2 May 2011

Let go* - Avril Lavigne

And yet we know that the worst images are those that were unseen to the world. The empty seat at the dinner table. Children who were forced to grow up without their mother or their father. Parents who would never know the feeling of their child's embrace. Nearly 3,000 citizens taken from us, leaving a gaping hole in our hearts.
Taken from President Obama's speech - (see here)

I hope and pray that with the news today, those aforementioned people will have some sort of closure.

*Her unreleased track which was supposed to be on her debut album which had the same name.

Grace* - U2

Still on the Royal Wedding! =)

The flower girl is so cute, isn't she? Her name is Grace. Grace Van Cutsem. She managed to steal the limelight (to me, at least) from the Royal kiss!

*Makes mental note - make sure there are no frowning flower girls around when my photos are taken during my wedding*

*Quite a beautiful song, taken from their 10th studio album.

Sunday, 1 May 2011

When you're gone* - Avril Lavigne

We watched this movie a few weeks ago during my church's home cell group meeting.

It wasn't great but it was a sobering reminder that one day, Jesus will take all of his people away from the earth. This is what the Bible refers to as the "Rapture". Thereafter, there will be a period called the "Tribulation" - before Jesus comes again and rules the world.

If you are not a Christian, this may seem as utter nonsense to you. I dun blame you - if i were in yr shoes, i would think worse things of these views.

But i feel compelled to blog this - please, please, please, take note of this. For one day, all the Christians who are true believers will disappear from the face of the earth - literally. It is believed that infants and little children will also disappear.

I do not know how they will explain it away - but i want to tell you now that this has been predicted by the Bible long ago.

If unfortunately this has happened, and you are here because you did a search online to make sense of what is happening, do not be surprised. Instead, get hold of the Bible. And take time to watch the following videos.

1. Video - Part 1
2. Video - Part 2
3. Video - Part 3

The videos are really long - it would take some effort to watch them all. But if rapture has happened, then do make the effort! There may be other videos or webpages online which talk about this.

If it has not happened, you may think i'm out of my mind and full of cr*p. Well, go ahead. But i'm still blogging this as i feel compelled to warn everyone - and i'm putting kep words in this post so that in the future, after the rapture, people can do a search on google and come across this post - millions disappeared vanished unexplained chaos world peace

I wish you all the best.

*The 2nd single from her 3rd studio album. Nice power ballad.